"There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Pizza Night and My Gluten-Free Shift

From my Instagram post:
It's pizza night! Lovin' the classic Margherita - tomato, basil, vegan substitute for mozzarella topped with black olives, field mushrooms and spinach on a gluten-free base. No shame, I finished half of this in under 15 minutes; saved the half for tomorrow. 
For those of you who may be wondering why I've moved to a gluten-free diet recently, there are various reasons and factors for the switch. You don't get diagnosed for gluten intolerance overnight. As I learned from a colleague, it took years for her to finally narrow it down to gluten. In my case, I don't usually adapt a diet (as I've done in the past, e.g., pescetarian, lactose-free) just because. This is one of my 'small steps' to rebalance my lifestyle while at the same time helping address some health concerns, with the ultimate goal of understanding the changes in my body better.

For the past few months, I've been having skin reactions on my face that seemed to not go away for good. It could be due to the change in environment (the ever changing and unpredictable weather conditions in London), change in diet (ingredients here may be different than what my body was used to), and/or stress factors. It could be a lot of things.

As almost everything in London is too costly, that means I don't have easy access to an affordable and at the same time dependable facial centre the way I used to when I was in the Philippines. Back there, it will usually take at most two visits, possibly one full facial peel along with regular facials, for my facial woes to go away. (Dermstrata - Greenbelt Branch, I miss you!)

For now, I'm staying away from gluten and dairy to see if my skin reactions have anything to do with these potential triggers. The good news is that there are properly regulated gluten-free and dairy-free options in the supermarkets here and all I have to do is search for them and read food labels diligently.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

The Saturday Agenda: Vintage Find

I love my routines but I do sneak in some variations every now and then.
My Saturday agenda at Angel and Islington today - the usual suspects plus a few twists:
  • After having my hair cut at Hair Base Islington (Cut was okay but I really miss my Filipino hairdressers and stylists in Manila!), I found out that it was raining quite heavily. I decided to grab a cup of coffee for warmth.
  • On my way to one of my usual coffee stops (Coffee Works), I bought fruits from several stalls along Chapel Market, a new discovery of fresh finds and my own small steps in supporting local.
  • After warming up over a cup of flat white, I bought my protein at Turner & George -- sirloin steak for my Chipotle recipe.
  • Another slight twist to my weekend routine: I wandered through Camden Passage and finally gave in to buying this vintage find. Scroll down to see what I found!
  • Finally, the endnote to my Angel & Islington weekend routine: I bought my flowers, this time from the stall in front of the Angel Station.
Cheers and enjoy the remaining bits of the weekend! Stay dry!


Vintage clip-on earrings with Swarovski crystals:
These would be lovely for a special occasion :)

Sunday, July 16, 2017

The Sunday Agenda: Ice Cream

Yesterday, I promised to treat myself to a scoop of ice cream.
This fine Sunday, I found the Amorino shop at Goodge Street.
Amorino sells gluten-free gelatos and I think its huge selling point is the artful presentation of its gelato in rose-like petals. How lovely and unique, isn't it? You can have as many flavours as you like, too! I got mine in banana, pistachio, raspberry and hazelnut.

Gelato. Hmm, is it the same as ice cream? Well, it is Italian for ice cream. It's just that the Italians make their ice creams in a slightly different way. Usually there is more milk than cream, which is then slowly churned to keep the gelato as dense as possible. The gelatos don't easily melt and drip like regular ice cream. I finished my Amorino 'flower' leisurely in 15 minutes :)

Sunday, July 09, 2017

The Saturday Agenda: Indian Brunch, Kensington Palace and The Regent's Park

Hey there! How's your weekend going so far? Are you dreading Monday and wishing for the extra 24 hours to prolong the weekend bliss? Hahaha, I feel you my friend. So relatable!

My weekend buddy, travel organiser, and good friend Liza is leaving for a place with almost-year-round warm weather very soon and we are maximising the weekends left for her to have a proper 'last hurrah' with London (after staying here for more than seven years).

It was a sunny Saturday contrary to our expectations of cloudy skies. Obviously, that made us very happy. Let's keep the text brief and sweet. Here's the Saturday agenda in five bullets:

  1. We had Indian brunch at Dishoom (Carnaby branch). The place gets packed quite fast and one needs to reserve ahead. Good thing we got a 9:30 AM spot.
  2. We walked around the Regent Street. It was the day of the London Pride March and the streets were decked out in rainbow colours.
  3. Kensington Park. It was a lovely day under the sunshine and the gardens seemed as green as they can be.
  4. Kensington Palace. Our Art Fund pass allowed us free entry to visit the state apartments where royals like Queen Victoria and Princess Diana once lived.
  5. Regent's Park. Incidentally, I got to cross out one from my bucket list: To visit an English Garden. Do you think I will be able to cross out the other two in my list this year?
Click 'Read more'to see my short, sort-of bucket list and the rest of the Saturday agenda pictures.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Saturday Agenda: Kenwood House & Hampstead Heath

Hello dear. Hope summer is treating you well, wherever you are now.
I went for a "little escape" this weekend.

Here's my quick Saturday agenda:
  1. Kenwood House - This stately house and its estate is located at the northern part of Hampstead Heath. This was featured in films such as Notting Hill and Sense and Sensibility. It also houses a collection of paintings which includes a Rembrandt self-portrait.
  2. Hampstead Heath - A really massive park that is more "countryside" than green spaces typical of London city parks. If you want to truly detach from urban life without going very far from the city, this is the 'heath' for you. Think hilly, sometimes forest-like, grassy trails and ponds (like the one pictured above).
Click to "Read more".