WelshVegan Fest – May 19 to May 20

It’s been almost a year since I moved to Wales, and I am always excited to find super cool, enviromentally friendly and humane events in Wales, such as the Welsh Vegan Fest!

You all know by now how I love all things Welsh! So this event hits all the marks, I mean Welsh + food + vegan! Don’t mind if I do. The event takes place over two days: the 19th and 20th May, 2018. Standard entry is £3 per day from 10:30A.M to 17:00. VIP tickets are also available for £15 which include early 10:00A.M entry for both days and a goodie bag made up of donations we have received from stallholders and businesses.

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Photo courtesy of Thw Welsh Vegan Festival

There will be over 60 stalls for both days with plenty of hot food for people to choose. But if you are more of a snack kind of person, they are also having sweet treat stalls. Also (the fun doesn’t stop there) there will be vegan friendly cosmetic brands, sustainable clothing and many animal loving, super cool vibes humans around. It is a good chance to meet more people who wont look at you funny when you order the pizza sans the cheese lol.

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Photo courtesy of The Wesh Vegan Festival – The Ice Green

Speaking of animal loving humans, all of the proceedings from the event are going to Farplace Animal Rescue (charity) which is based in Weardale but rescues animals from all over the UK, many of which may never be rehomed due to their health.

So are you convinced yet? See you there! Cardiff, Tramshed May 19th – 20th

To buy tickets or to learn more about the event, visit: http://www.welshveganfestival.com

xoxo

J


The Festival is organised by Farplace Animal Rescue. We are a UK animal rescue who help specialist cases like FIV+ cats and have helped many such cases in need from across the UK. All the profits from the festival will directly help animals

Discover Britain: Stonehenge & Wow I am 36 years old now!

Where does the time go? is there a time-consuming black hole conspiracy happening at the moment? lol May 2018, guys, May! can you believe it? This year is flying by, but they do say time flies when you are having fun which is my 2018 motto “Have fun with yourself” life is way too short for complications, negative thoughts and boring political debates (sorry, if this is your thing and its fun for you, then YAY YOU! but definitely not my cup of tea)

Anyway, May means that my 36 (gulp) birthday has come and gone already, I love celebrating birthdays. I see birthdays as milestones, as an opportunity to celebrate life and everything you embody. Be you, unapologetically and embrace the beauty of age. With age comes wisdom and with wisdom comes enjoyment.

My 36 years on earth have been filled with ups and downs, with achievements and failures, with beautiful and ugly people (on the inside – not referring to looks) and with experiencing different cultures.  I have been lucky enough to live in different continents and different countries which has definitely expanded my views and has given me a taste for an eclectic combination of foods, lol. This year, 2018, my first birthday since I came back to the UK and my first birthday with my thoughtful Welsh half who made my birthday magical and unforgettable.

He surprised me with a trip to Stonehenge, Wiltshire ❤ and Salisbury!

Stonehenge is one of those places I always wanted to visit, on my top 5 bucket list destinations since I was very young.

Walk in the footsteps of your Neolithic ancestors at Stonehenge – one of the wonders of the world and the best-known prehistoric monument in Europe.

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I absolutely loved it! Although I always thought the stone circle would be bigger than what it actually is, the historic meaning of the place makes the trip worth it. As you enter Stonehenge you have access to a small Neolithic museum area with an exhibition of instruments, bones, and artifacts found in the surrounding areas. You can also roam around some Neolithic houses that represent a small village of the time (4,500 years ago).

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Fun Fact: Stonehenge stones come from West Wales! According to the established wisdom for some 90 years, many of the smaller rocks making up Stonehenge come from the Preseli Hills in Pembrokeshire, Wales.

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Stone Circle

Stonehenge Stone Circle is a prehistoric monument in Wiltshire, England. It consists of a ring of standing stones, with each standing stone around 13 feet (4.0 m) high, 7 feet (2.1 m) wide and weighing around 25 tons. 

Archaeologists believe it was constructed from 3000 BC to 2000 BC. The surrounding circular earth bank and ditch, which constitute the earliest phase of the monument, have been dated to about 3100 BC. Radiocarbon dating suggests that the first bluestones were raised between 2400 and 2200 BC. 

Stonehenge is one of the most famous landmarks in the UK, regarded as a British cultural icon. Definitely, a must see. Just know that access to the stone circles is somewhat restricted and you are not able to get up and close to touch the stones.  This is understandable due to the nature of the place. Also, keep in mind there is a charge for entry and it can be a little expensive for large families to visit considering there isn’t much more there to see apart from the stone circle itself, the Neolithic houses and the small museum area. There is also a cafe and a gift shop with lots of nick-nacks to commemorate your visit.

for more info visit: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/stonehenge/things-to-do/#Section1 

Shoutout to my Welsh half for surprising me with a roadtrip to one of the must beautiful, historical and magic place ever! ❤

On a separate post I will talk about the town of Salisbury, its history, places to go and my favorite location there.

 

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Family Cooking with Addie Gundry Recipe Books

Happy New Year!

2018 is here! Are you ready for a healthy, powerful, and enlightening 2018? I know I am!

This year I want to re-focus on healthy eating. Last year with the move to the UK, and a new house, new job, new everything it was hard sometimes to keep on track with healthy choices. But this year I am back to it 100% (ask me again in June, and we will see, lol) You can find lots of ideas posted daily on my IG stories (@Onixjihane) and on my Healthy Eating for Kids and Families Facebook group and Pinterest board (will post links at the end)

Whether you and your family choose to eat a vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free or traditional diet is entirely up to you. YOU and only you know what is best for you, make sure to be informed, there are so many sources of info online where you can find more details on the benefits of each diet and decide if it is for you. However remember these are not fad diets, these are life-changing options to improve your overall health. That is why they have to be tailored to you and what works best for you.

My son and I tend more to the vegetarian side of things however we are not fully vegan. It’s a process and more importantly, I want him to try everything and judge for himself what he wants and doesn’t want to eat. It’s his body after all.

Anyway, back in November, I was approached by a publishing company (St. Martin’s Press)  with these two wonderful cookbooks by Addie Gundry. The books feature a range of delicious yet easy meals for children and families.  The books are beautiful, easy to follow, family-friendly and with lots and lots of ideas.

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One book is all about cookies (My son LOVED IT) it allow us to bond over family cooking time while getting our hands covered in dough and our hair covered in flour (why does that happen when I cook with him?) Our favorite? “Tropical Paradise Cookies” with coconut and lime! simply delicious and it doesn’t take long to cook ( 10 min prep time, plus 15min cook time) * I wish I had photos but I lost them when I reformated the camera! 

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The other book “103 Everyday Dinner Ideas” is a gem. I am a working single mum, so planning my dinner meals for the week is a must. One of our favorites was the “Grilled Romaine with Blue Cheese Dressing” yes! grilled lettuce! I did substitute the Blue Cheese with a milder cheese because my son doesn’t like blue cheese and I have certain cheese allergies. Another winner? “Mushroom Stuffed Grilled Potatoes” feeling the veggie vibe here? lol The book is not a vegetarian book so you can find chicken, beef and turkey recipes in there too.

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These books are the perfect addition to any recipe book library! You will find so many options to kickstart your healthy 2018 with delicious, easy foods for you and your family!

Links to my food dedicated networks

Pinterest Board 

Facebook Group

Instagram (I only post food recipes and ideas on the stories not in the actual IG feed)

xoxo

Jihane


More about Addie Gundry, she received a master’s degree in culinary arts at Auguste Escoffier in Avignon, France. She has worked for Christian Etienne, Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller and Martha Stewart on management, restaurant openings, brand development, editorial, marketing and sales. In 2015 she was the winner of “Cutthroat Kitchen“on the Food Network. 
About the books
EASY COOKIE RECIPES: 103 Best Recipes for Chocolate Chip Cookies, Cake Mix Creations, Bars, and Holiday Treats Everyone Will Love (November 28, 2017, St. Martin’s Griffin, $19.99):Gundry adds elegance to no-frills baking with delicious results. From Apple Pie Bars to Red Velvet Thumbprints, and the best classic chocolate chip cookies ever, EASY COOKIE RECIPES shows readers how to use expert tips and shortcuts to make over a hundred types of cookies, plus plenty of customizations to make these recipes your own. Once you have your baking basics down, you can explore fun inventive types of cookies. This book is a collection of playful recipes that add to, change up, and make old recipes new and exciting, while maintaining what makes cookies classic.
EVERYDAY DINNER IDEAS: 103 Easy Recipes for Chicken, Pasta, and Other Dishes Everyone Will Love (November 28, 2017, St. Martin’s Griffin, $19.99): “Dinner. That word has many meanings. It can be that small window of time you have to feed the kids… hoping to convince your children to eat their broccoli before bath time. On the flip side, dinner can mean a first date, an anniversary, or even a birthday. Dinner can be a magnificent occasion, where the table is set with your finest china and crisply ironed linens. You can eat at 6 p.m. or 10 p.m. You can order pizza or poach lobster. Dinner is what you make of it,” writes Addie Gundry. With plenty of one-pot meals, dinners ready in under half an hour, and innovative flavor combinations to spice up your go-to proteins, EVERYDAY DINNER IDEAS is a home-cook’s best friend. Poised to become a go-to resource for busy people trying to cook delicious dinners, this cookbook is driven by the recipes home cooks search for most on the web, like lasagna, salmon, pork chops, and ground beef.

Holiday Must Have Gift for Mum

-This post is sponsored by Naipo Care products-

S T R E S S!!
Oh, the holidays are just a few Fridays away! gasp! can you believe it? just like that 2017 is done. Have you started your Xmas shopping yet? I admit I never do until the last minute which is why this year I have JUST started (thank you online shopping)

Xmas can be a very stressful time, heck half term holidays just now has been a very stressful enough lol. Kids out of school, bored at home, always hungry. STRESS I tell you! However, Naipo was a gift sent from the heavens! They sent me the exclusive Naipo Cordless Neck and Shoulder Massager with Heat The perfect way to end your stressful days, chilling with a hot cup of tea in your bed. It comes with a very cool handy bag in which you can store your cordless massager and take it with you if you need some peace and quiet at the beach or park. (just charge in advance or use the car charger if on the go) The settings allow you to adapt to a comfortable speed, and you can opt for the experience to include heat or you can turn that option off, up to you!

Product Features

● Cordless design with rechargeable lithium-ion battery offers you an extremely free massage experience.
● 4 deep-kneading shiatsu massage nodes deliver an incredibly comfortable massage, 3D rotation massage rollers are perfect to use on your neck, back and shoulders.
● Three distinct speed and bi-direction modes mimic the feeling of a personal massage.
● Heating function for relaxing warmth that loosens muscles and enhances therapeutic value.
● A bonus vogue handbag makes it convenient to carry with you, portable and gorgeous.

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This is the perfect gift for any mum, no matter what stage of motherhood she is at, I am telling you THIS IS IT! She will love you for it. And for a limited time only, Naipo is selling their exclusive holiday edition complete with a super festive and cute print. This is a specially designed shoulder and neck massager for this 2017 Christmas, which will be sold at the end of October in limited quantity. It’s special because the design combines Christmas elements together with their unique massager technology.

Naipo holiday massager OnixJ

Win-win! What’s on your holiday gift list?


Available in the USA and the UK 

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Indian Hand Woven Recycled Fabric Chindi Rag Rugs

Since my move to Wales, I’ve had the change to play around with new designs when it comes to home decor. Decorating a house from scratch gives you the chance to find your style and make your space, well, yours.

 

When it comes to home styling, I am in between Scandinavian and Boho looks. I love clean lines, geometrical patterns, all white and grey looks, lots of plants (cacti are my favourite) and I also little pops of colour here and there, which is why when I saw this recycled hand-made rugs I fell in love with them.

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Indian Hand Woven Recycled Fabric Chindi Rag Rugs are made using 100% cotton recycled fabric cuts, these rugs are a delight to own. Each one of them is unique yet conforming to the story of multicoloured stripes. Not one is ever the same to the other as the colours and patterns depend on what fabrics/colours they used when making them.
I also love the fact that they are Recycled 100% Cotton.

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How are they made?

Made from colourful cotton strips, our multicoloured striped cotton, Chindi Rugs use only 100% cotton recycled fabric offcuts. Each strip of fabric is woven together creating beautiful colour combinations and a design that is perfect for bringing some playfulness to your hallway, bedroom or living room.

Using traditional handlooms, these Chindi rugs are hand woven by skilled craftspeople in India, meaning that each one is completely unique and will give your home an individual look. These eco-friendly rugs are not only striking but also hardwearing so are ideal for high-traffic areas, and the multi-tonal design means that they don’t show dirt easily either, perfect for areas with pets or messy children!

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I bought two, one for my main entry hallway and one for the bathroom and I am in love with how well they look. They give the rooms a certain eclectic look without making it look too busy.

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What do you reckon? What is your home decor style?

xoxo

Jihane


I have added lots of Scandinavian and boho home decor ideas to my Pinterest board, go check it out!

Travelling, when your flight gets cancelled

Hello, world! I have been MIA for the longest! I think I have never been absent from the blog this long. It feels good to be back.
I have been settling in Wales, new job, new flat, new life, new everything and absolutely loving every minute of it.

I have been able to do some travelling both around the UK and to Europe. A few weeks back I went to Italy! I love Italy(ans) and all things Italian. The food, the culture, the language, the scenery. Italy has always had a place in my heart.

I went to Italy to pick up my now 11-year-old son who was there with my parents and my brother. We had a fantastic family reunion with lots of Italian wine and food. Pizza and Ice-cream will never be the same after I have been to Rome, never. The bar is set high and there is no going back, lol. We got to visit the Vatican City and the Coliseum in Rome. We also road tripped to Florence (thanks for the driving dad) and visited the beautiful and majestically old roads that enchant that city. Loved it all!

The journey got me thinking about all the times I travelled with my son when he was a baby, and how hard it can be for a mum to travel alone with little ones. Added the fact you can encounter delays, lost luggage, crying kids, tantrums and the looks of so many judgemental (often kidless) adults, travelling with small kids can be dreadful.

On one occasion travelling from the UK to the USA, our luggage got left behind in Heathrow due to a delay/change in flights. Which meant we arrived before our suitcases and hence we had only the clothes we had on available. Naturally, when these things happen and you have small kids there is nothing you can do but to buy a few clothes to get you by. Please keep that possibility in mind (extra cash) in case it ever happens to you. Trust me you don’t want to be stranded in a strange city with no clothes to change into at least for the first night.
But what if you don’t have the extra money? Or what if your flight gets cancelled on your way home after you have used all your money on your vacay?

That also happened to my parents recently. As a matter fact, when they were getting ready to leave Italy and head back to Texas, Hurricane Harvey decided to create havoc. All flights to Houston got cancelled, including, my parent’s flight from Milan. All of a sudden you are left with having to find a hotel for extra nights and having to find other ways to get back home. The stress! They ended up staying an extra night in Milan and then flying to New York (instead of Houston) and then finding their way to Texas.

There are some companies in the UK that can help you seek compensation if this happens to you. Flight compensation is a thing, and it doesn’t have to be complicated and expensive.This is just something to keep in mind for travelling mums. Be prepared, and in case things go pear-shaped, make your claim. Even claims based on bad weather cancellations might have a case, so check them out, Flight Delay Claims 4 U. https://www.flightdelayclaims4u.com

Anyway, that is me for now! Have you had a flight cancelled or delayed that has caused you extra money in expenses? Have your holidays abroad been affected by Ryanair’s recent fiasco?

xoxo

Embrace Your Natural Beauty #NoMakeUpDay

I am an advocate for wearing whatever makes you feel beautiful. Whether that is wearing makeup, a cute dress, a bikini, no make up at all, as long as you are comfortable in your own skin, and you are happy then wear it (or not)! The choice is yours and no one at all should make you feel bad for whatever it is you choose to wear.

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No makeup day is “celebrated” across the (Internet) globe on July 21st. It is a day to put down them false eyelashes and mascara and present yourself to the world just how you are. Unique, wild, goddess, beautiful. Unapologetically glorious and splendorous, that is you, that is you today and every day… flaunt it, girl!

There is beauty in “natural”. Don’t get me wrong, I do love makeup and some days I cannot leave the house with at least some blush and mascara. However, we need to learn how to love our natural selves more. We forget about nourishing the inner self and let it shine through. Sometimes we have this idealistic image of the world, and we feel that we need to present ourselves in a perfectly polished manner. But you now what? there is beauty in being natural.

 

Make sure you…

1. Take care of your skin, both internally and externally. For a healthy glow make sure you stay hydrated, that you consume enough water and fresh fruit and veg and you get enough hours of beauty sleep.

2. Scrub. Our skin is constantly shredding. Make sure you get rid of the old skin by scrubbing once a week. You can make your own natural scrub by combining sugar, coconut oil and coffee for a delicious gentle scrub. Or if you are feeling more tropical, why not some olive oil, honey and sugar. This will moisturise your skin and get rid of old skin giving you a natural glow.

3. Embrace your features. I have a million freckles which I have learnt to love. I mean it’s either that or covering with layers of foundation every day, lol. Embrace your facial features and make them your unique attributes.

4. Less is more, especially during the summer. Who wants melted sticky faces? No one, trust me. So during the summer take a softer approach to makeup. I am not saying don’t wear any at all, I am saying, go lighter.

And remember sunscreen. Whether you are using makeup or not don’t forget to use sunscreen.

For a guide to natural sunscreens  (UK) visit: The Healthy Now 

Let’s see your #NoMakeUp Selfies today!

Jihane, xoxo

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Tuesday Thoughts:: Opposites Attract?

Earlier last week, I did a bit of microblogging on my personal Facebook account, and I got so many messages I decided to expand.

This is what I wrote on Facebook

“For the longest, I believed in the old saying “opposites attract” – I believed it so strongly that I was ever so inclined to look for that _ I was wrong, it never lead me anywhere. Now at 35 (which is like 21 with 14 years of experience), I have finally understood that this myth it is not always true – and perhaps has never been true for me. Similarities attract. Same levels of OCD (lol, I have germ issues ok) same levels of weirdness matched up with same humour, values, morals, and background are important and fundamental. They lead to better COMMUNICATION, RESPECT and UNDERSTANDING. Opposites might be attractive at times, but similarities, man… those create magic sparks.”

Who came up with that nonsense of opposites attract? I mean yes, it is true, sometimes some difference can bring some balance into a relationship, however, more often than not it creates cracks. After all, why not seek to be with someone who can see and experience the world like you do? Has this perhaps been perpetuated by the media? Let’s look into Disney movies, movies which many little girls (myself included) grew up with. The Beauty and the Beast, and The Little Mermaid, for example, are filled with the notion of opposites and the perpetual seek for completeness. That is a pure lie. We are complete, whole and unique from the moment we are born, we do not need to seek for another half to make us one. We are ONE whole and beautiful. We should seek for supportiveness and life satisfaction, both of which are rooted in similarities. One similar view of the world, one similar path to seek. That is my opinion anyway, but just in case let me back my thought up with some research…

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The paper, “Personality Similarity and Life Satisfaction in Couples” by Katrin Furler, Veronica Gomez, Alexander GrobDepartment of Psychology, University of Basel, Switzerland, suggests that “research to date leans more towards ‘‘like attracts like’’ rather than ‘‘opposites attract’’ and assumes that similarity, as opposed to complementarity (Antill, 1983), is an important factor in romantic relationships.

“Studies on mate selection, for instance, support the notion that similarity between partners is essential in forming intimate relationships. People, rather consciously or unconsciously, choose partners who are similar to themselves on a number of variables, from age, education, values, physical attractiveness, and intelligence (Epstein & Gutt-man, 1985; Vandenberg, 1972). The similarity is theorised to be beneficial for intimate relationships by coordinating partners’ thoughts and behaviours, increasing understanding of each other’s intentions and motivations, and reinforcing their appraisals, leading to relationship satisfaction and longevity (Anderson, Keltner, & John,2003).

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Although many other empirical research on the matter has proved inconclusive due to the difficulties to quantify levels of life satisfaction, and personality traits in a more general manner, I have come to believe, for me in particular, similarities are a fundamental part of building strength in any kind of relationship.

What do you think? What has worked for you?

xoxo, Jihane

Tuesday

Waiakea, More than Just Water

Summer!! It’s already July, and things are getting hot! So it is important to keep hydrated. How much water do you drink every day? Are you sure you are getting enough?

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While we can get water from fruits, milk, teas and other drinks, Water is the only drink able to provide the required amount of hydration without adding on the carbs, sugars, and calories. And not a moment too soon, the people from Waiākea sent me a six-pack of their cool sustainable and ethically sourced water.

 

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What makes Waiakea so unique you ask? Well, it is not all about the water but the enormous positive ecological and social impact they have in their community too. Waiākea prides itself on using high-grade 100% RPET, or recycled polyethylene terephthalate, for all of its bottles. RPET is post-consumer recycled plastic and has incredible environmental advantages.

In comparison to regular or virgin plastic bottles, our 100% RPET bottles:
– Use 85% less energy to manufacture
– Use 90% less water
– Reduce carbon emissions over 90%.4

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What makes them extra special to me is their social mission.
In 2014, 650 million people lacked access to clean water—more than two times the population of the United States alone. Simultaneously, more than 2.3 billion people live without basic functional sanitation.

As a result, every 20 seconds, a child dies from a water-related illness. 6 Waiākea was founded to create positive change for not only the environment but also for people in need throughout the world. For that reason, for every litre of Waiākea you buy, Waiākea donates one week of clean water to those in need in Africa and throughout the world, through our incredible partner, Pump Aid.

Waiākea has won my heart! Not every day you can find an eco-friendly, socially ethical company that provides a fantastic product.

Thanks, Waiākea!


For more info you can visit 

https://waiakeasprings.com/ethically/#clean-water-changes-lives