Sunday, 26 February 2017

7 Years Pescatarian


Above is a picture of an amazing pizza I ate in Harrods last October. It was full of seasonal vegetables and hands down one of the best things I have ever eaten- now I really want a pizza!

There is a reason why I am typing this brief story is this month marks my 7th year as a pescatarian, and had I never have taken the plunge to stop eating meat and only eat fish when I was 12, I simply wouldn't have eaten this pizza pictured above.

How do I know this? Being Pescatarian improved my diet dramatically, I was a fairly fussy eater growing up, I'd happily try new things, but would often dislike them before really giving them a go.

I first wanted to be vegetarian when I was 8/9, and this was down to hearing about it on TV or in a magazine and thinking it was a cool thing to do, plus I felt sorry for the animals. It never happened. I think my parents sort of distracted me from the idea as I remember almost every meal always involving chicken for a week or so afterwards! (chicken was my all time favourite.)

Then, when I was 12 1/2 I took the plunge and told my family I wouldn't be eating meat anymore. That Christmas I had eaten what felt like my bodyweight and more in meat alone, what with numerous buffets including cold beef, chicken and ham, it was any meat eaters heaven, and I simply couldn't eat it without feeling ill anymore.

The decision was made that I was only allowed to give up meat if I continued to eat fish, which I was fine with, I hadn't eaten much of it over Christmas and frankly I loved and still love fish, and knew I would never get bored of eating it. I also knew it wouldn't have much of an effect on me socially, as fish generally seems to be something people either love or hate, so I would just be one of those people who loved it and would eat it, whilst almost every restaurant has a fish or vegetarian option- I knew I was never going to go hungry.

Turning Pescatarian was arguably one of the best decisions I had made in my pre-teens, and sticking to it has also been good for me. I know for a fact I do tend to eat a lot of the 'bad' things, and somehow I have a little gut feeling that had I have never taken the plunge, I would have become even more addicted to the 'bad' things and potentially felt worse about my body and diet. I have been able to maintain a healthy weight throughout my whole teens, I rarely get colds/coughs and asides from the anaemia, I haven't been ill at all. 
It also opened my eyes to so many more vegetables, fruits and other vegetarian-based dishes that I had never considered eating before, and now I have a very balanced diet,  and I feel great for it. I also always said that if one day I wake up and I want to eat chicken again, I will. This 'phase' was only ever going to be brief initially, however I don't see myself turning back anytime soon.

If you like fish enough to sacrifice other meats, I really do suggest giving it a try, even if it is just for a week, I guarantee you will feel somewhat better from it.

Beki x

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Saturday, 25 February 2017

Yet Another New Design...


Oh look, Beki has changed the theme of the blog again, surprise surprise. 

As mentioned in the 3rd birthday post, I am constantly changing the design of the blog, whether its a colour, header or completely new theme- it's always changing, and I'm not gonna lie, it irritates me.

I've always said that this blog is an extension of me, and as a result of this I want my theme to counteract that, so rightly I'm not going to want my blog to look different to how I want it perceived? 

Individuality is another point, I've always been very quirky and feminine when it has come to my sense of fashion and style, so that is something I also need to be reflective in the design.

Last April I had the simple black and white theme with the flowers, and I adored that theme, and still do if I am 100% honest, however I created that theme at the point where I couldn't write, so when it came back to being in a position to write, I felt as if I needed a new start and the flowers needed to leave.

I really love the tiles I've used, and has wanted the tile look since my blog first began, however, now I'm really over it. I think it looks a little too basic for my liking and once again I really don't think it represents me at all.

So here we have it, the new design, and I am obsessed.

I say this now, but it will probably change, however I can't see myself swapping for a very very long time. 


Beki x


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Friday, 24 February 2017

Currently Reading: 'Girl Up' by Laura Bates

Hello all!
Today's post is a quick one just to talk about what book (or should I say books) I am currently reading.
I adore reading, especially when it is a book I have a genuine desire to read, and frankly I know I don't do enough of it, and set myself a challenge of one a month throughout 2017- that failed when I didn't read in January, however I am close to reading two in February, so I think it will be quits. The problem is at the moment I am needing to dedicate more time to audition prep and monologue learning (which takes me forever-not ideal!!!), but I singlehandedly know that no matter how much I read it/attempt to learn it if I am remotely stressing about it my brain will not even begin to consider remembering it. So right now I am currently trying to do everything else I need to do, and then monologues can be my best friend.
A couple of days ago I picked up my copy of 'Girl Up' by Laura Bates, which had been sitting on my bookshelf to read since I ordered it back in Autumn. I'm only a few pages in so far (this being due to Gi Fletcher releasing 'Happy Mum Happy Baby' and I naughtily started reading it prior to finishing this one and ended up reading it whenever I could and starting/finishing it yesterday- more on that soon!) however I am unbelievably interested and excited to read this book, and 'empowering, easy-read,  feminist non-fiction' really is a favourite!
Part of me kind of wanted to read 'Everyday Sexism' (also by Laura) first, and part of me still does, however, I've started the book now and there is no going back, perhaps I'll have to pick up 'Everyday Sexism' to have as my read throughout March...
Let me know what you are currently reading!
Beki x
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Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Urban Decay Vice Liquid Lipstick in 1993


 
Last week I went shopping and picked up a few things from Urban Decay.
 
Two of my purchases were sort of intended, however not as I initially planned.
 
1993 was a shade of lipstick I wanted in my collection as soon as it first launched, however I never got around to getting it.
 
Whilst stalking the counter I knew I wanted to purchase a pink lip liner (more coming soon), and 1993 in pencil grabbed my attention, I dont have a true brown/nude lipliner and the colour really compliments my skintone.
 
It wasn't until I looked up and saw the vice liquid lipsticks that I knew I was looking at something I couldn't let go. I had seen nothing online about these launching, and knew looking at the vast colour selection needed at least one in my evergrowing collection. after swatching numerous colours, I realised that there was a 1993 in liquid lipstick form, and that was what sealed the deal. The consistensy of these liquid lipsticks is in my opinion the best on the market. They are thin, quick drying and long lasting and incredibly pigmented. They have a slight stickiness to them but no different to what a standard matte lip or regular lipstick wears, and the longevity is fantastic. (I had it on for four hours whilst singing/writing/drinking plenty of cups of tea and it didn't budge at all- so much so it took four attempts of micellar water and cotton pads to take it off!)
 
Overall, I'm unbelievably impressed with these two products, but in particular the liquid lipstick, and it will take a lot for me to restrain from buying more!
 
Beki x




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Sunday, 19 February 2017

Blonde & Blank is 3!!!!



It's crazy for me to think that 3 years ago today I posted my first blogpost, where has the time gone?!

Three years ago I typed my first blogpost, and told three/four people that I started the wonderful world that is Blonde and Blank, and I couldn't be prouder.

Most people who were in this for the 'business'/'growth' would be questioning why after three years of consistent(-ish) blogging that my blog is going 'nowhere'? The answer is simple, this blog is a hobby that I adore, and it will always be that.

Sure, with time growth does happen, however it isn't my main goal in life to be a blogger. My main goal in life is to sing/perform and write on the sideline. So yes, this blog could give me a 'boost' dare I say regarding the future, but I like to look at it as a visual portfolio of my time and energy when it comes to writing. 

Naturally, YouTube and blogging go hand in hand with one another, combined with my little/personal social following to start with, I am unbelievably proud and happy with the 20,000+ views I've achieved over the past three years, especially when there have been times where I haven't posted for months! I really love the fact that I can also see the countries that have viewed my blog over the years, and it always makes my heart go a little bit giddy seeing countries such as America be in the 8,000+ views category! To say I feel like a proud mother would be an understatement.

This blog has been with me through some pretty difficult personal times, and since September I have felt little-no pressure to writing, which is exactly how I felt all those years ago.

My favourite part of this blog is the fact that I have used this website to track and monitor me, sure, I adore writing about my ever-growing lip collection, (and I doubt that will be ending anytime soon!) however, seeing my list of dreams, hopes, and simple day-to-day 'desires' typed on a screen and potentially accomplished is what makes me the happiest.

If you know me or have been reading this blog for a while you'll know I am constantly changing things until I am happy, and that is literally how I feel about this blog theme. I'm currently looking into another potential redesign, however I will be sticking with the grid theme for a little while longer, just until I've properly made up my mind!

So, from the bottom of my little blogging and lipstick obsessed heart, thank you, you've made this blonde very happy over the past three years, and I can't wait for so many more.

Beki x

www.blondeandblank.co.uk ♡




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Friday, 17 February 2017

Stress & The Fear of Failure




(this blogpost was written over numerous parts of the day)

It's 2.53am on the 16th of February 2017. I have generally avoided staying up to this time following the finish the A Level Drama (numerous 4am finishes and 6am starts mixed with copious amounts of Red Bull don't make a very cooperative Beki funnily enough!), however, in true Beki Blank style, its February and I am stressed. Just a tad, but all the same, stressed- or so I thought.

I say just a tad due to the fact that I am generally the kind of person who is always stressed or anxious about something, something is always on my mind 'worrying' me or going through my thoughts repeatedly so I don't forget (this is probably for the best- my forgetfulness is appalling!), and this is something that I am comfortable with, aware of, and most importantly in control of. 

However, on Wednesday the 15th of February, I had the mother of all Beki Breakdowns. The involve numerous equivalents of Kim Kardashian Crying Faces, endless spoonfuls of Nutella and general thoughts that often include/revolve around 'Why did I fall in love with performing?'- and the icing on the cake to this situation was my cat being sick all over the coffee table, not ideal for someone with Emetophobia!

I love to write to do lists, whether it be on paper or on my phone, and get great satisfaction in ticking off things I have done in the day (this will often include watch Eastenders, but it is another box ticked!). My To Do list is often never ending due to the fact I am constantly wanting to do more than I am probably able to do at this given moment, combined with my to do list often including the life goals I have rather than remembering to put the bins out.

So simply, yesterday I had a break down about the fact that I may not get to be the 'career bitch' or 'girl boss' I desire. I felt useless, talentless and like everything I had worked for both in education and in my own time was a simple waste of time. Earlier in the day I had cried over top notes that I felt I couldn't sing, screamed over monologues that weren't remotely entering my brain and asked myself why I was still trying. Cut to 1am-3am, where I spent two hours tidying my room, planning emails and saving lots of items to my Asos basket. It was almost like I had tipped over the edge of the iceberg and had the meltdown I needed, and subsequently fell asleep.

When I woke up Thursday morning I sent the emails I needed to send, told myself it was just a bad day and continued with the day like it was just another and I felt better for it. Now I know I just need to stop stressing and focussing more- else I will literally be no one (or any universities friend.)

I want to end this post simply saying I wish stress wasn't a subject that was brushed over like it was nothing. Stress has affected my health since I was 10 years old and somehow I think it will probably affect me for many more years to come. Only a few people have ever seen me at my worst and honestly, sometimes I wish more people had. This probably sounds ridiculous and attention seeking, but hear me out- I wish people would understand how ill, anxious and useless I feel when I am at my worst. I sit, I shake and I cry. I panic and basically think that the world around me is about to end if I don't complete what I set out to do, which 99% isn't the case. I do my best to hide it, but then often end up a clumsy mess that struggles with the simplest of tasks all because something that has nothing to do with the task I am taking part in is playing on my mind. I wish that people understood that it really affects and controls the way I can live my life and obviously, I wish I didn't suffer stress. And that I hope that one day stress doesn't run my life, and that I have a control on it.

Beki x



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Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Hated // Loved 3



'Hated // Loved' posts are surprisingly some of the most viewed posts written on here, and I must say they are a favourite to write, as its always nice rediscovering make-up/items that you bought however long ago!

First up I'm going to talk about Estée Lauder's Bronze Goddess Bronzer in shade 01. Realistically, I should have given this more of a try when I first got it, however, I didn't, and subsequently kept this bronzer for 'onstage' purposes, where frankly I need all the bronzer going to stop me looking like Caspar the friendly ghost. Last week we had dance shows in college so I packed my bronzer in my makeup bag, eagerly anticipating some 'orangeness' offstage and normality onstage, however, teamed with my full face it surprisingly suited me, and now I haven't looked back! Don't get me wrong, I use it extremely lightly, as I do think too much will literally make me look like I have brown lines smeared across my face, but generally I am really impressed!

The Nars Creamy Concealer is something I've mentioned before on this blog. I won't go into too much detail, however you should all note I found myself missing it this month. Yes, whilst Urban Decay's Naked Concealer will always be my favourite, last week I made the effort to find this concealer and switch it into my makeup bag- something that doesn't happen very often! Chantilly is a perfect match for my skin tone and the formula is flawless, and I simply cannot recommend it enough!

MAC's lipstick in Impassioned was not only my first ever MAC lipstick in 2014, but it was also one of the colours I was most scared to wear. I wore this colour to my 18th birthday a couple of years ago and I'll be honest, looking back I'm unsure of if it suited me. I love lipstick, and I love all colours of lipstick, but for a girl who loves to wear pink as much as I do, I just couldn't work out if this (or any other bright lip) did match/suit me anymore! Once again I grabbed this lip for my dance show makeup bag, and fell in love with it again. It sounds ridiculous, but I feel like I now remember why I picked this lipstick all those years ago, teamed with a lipliner its anyones best friend, and looking at it in more detail it is probably one of the easiest bright pink lipsticks to wear!

Again, I've spoken about Anastasia Beverly Hills' Dip Brow on this blog before countless times. And now, all I have to add to everything mentioned is that it may have overtaken my beloved Barry M Brow Pencil- which really is saying something! Since getting the right shade for me (Taupe for reference) I've only had one day where my brows were a bit dodgy (they literally went ginger and I'm putting it down to using too much pomade and rubbish blending my end!). It didn't put me off though, and I somehow see myself using this product for a very long time...

Finally we have the NYX Jumbo eye pencils. I've always been a fan of these, especially with how effective and easy they were to use, however, I always found they didn't last very well and would fade off my eyes really quickly, regardless of what bases or primers I used. It wasn't until one day where I was getting ready, and accidentally used a second coat of the pencil (on top of the Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Creme de Nude- go to base!) that I thought 'ey, we'll give the double coat a go and see what happens.' Completely different, it was genuinely like I was using a different product, the are so much more pigmented and long lasting that I now feel the need to collect all the colours so I always have them on hand. Pictured above is Lavender (the colour that made the rediscovery), Slate and Pots & Pans.

And that's all! Are there any products you've recently rediscovered a love for?

Beki x



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Sunday, 12 February 2017

Why I Bought Myself a Promise Ring...



Last year I jokingly made a statement declaring that I was going to buy myself a promise ring since no one around me was going to buy me one, and a few months later I have. Here's a story...

When I went to Bluewater the other weekend I had a voucher for Pandora, so I decided to treat myself to a ring, and jokingly labelled it my promise ring, but there is a significant(ish) meaning to it.

I, as well as many many people on the planet can have confidence issues and have things we love/like about ourselves, and things we hate. I wear this ring as often as I can now (basically I take it off for floor work in dance and when I shower as I'm paranoid I'm gonna break it!) and a little reminder that there is positivity, love and happiness surrounding me.

It sounds cheesy, but this little ring is almost a little reminder for 'why I am here', 'my purpose', and my 'promise' that I won't give up on the little things whilst working for the big things.

Wanting to go into the industry I want to work in means that negative feedback, criticism and simply being told no is pretty common, and I can take that, however, as I was explaining to a friend the other day, a little bit of positivity or a 'yes' certainly wouldn't go unnoticed or unappreciated once in a while, and this little ring, is just a little reminder to keep going, and the moment you give up is usually the moment when good things will happen, they just take time that's all...

Beki x
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Friday, 10 February 2017

hello, its me // #blankthoughts


Honestly, this week has been a really busy week for me, what with trying to sort out auditions (which are near impossible apparently!), planning a couple little things I need to do in half term along with dance shows, it is safe to say I haven't had much time to write this week!

However, you may have noticed that I changed the blog up a bit this week- firstly I opted for lavender as it is my favourite colour and I fancied a bit of a change, but secondly, and most exciting (well it is for me), we are now www.blondeandblank.co.uk ! AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!

I have been dreaming of this moment since I first started this blog, and I feel really proud in saying that I have done all this myself. I set up the blog themes and I transferred the domain across (most stressful half an hour of my life!), but I did it all myself with no professional help or guidance, and I couldn't be prouder.

I really cannot wait for the weather to start to get a bit nicer- I've got a few outdoor outfit posts I'd love to shoot but trust me they won't be good in the rain! And here is to a less stressful but even busier week!

Beki x
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Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Juice Wednesdays


I'm not the kind of girl who sticks to fad diets, or meal plans at all, I simply eat what I want within reason.

Back in the summer I made the decision to juice for all but a week in the hope I could lose a couple of pounds, but more than anything not feel so bloated and generally just a little bit better. This worked, however I lost a pound if I was lucky, not that this was an issue, because I didn't feel so crappy on the inside, and that was worth more to me than looking 'pretty' and toned in my bikini.

Cut to late November, when I slowly realised that my diet wasn't awful, I just happened to only eat the foods that made me feel my worst at the worst time. For example, I would often eat a pasta meal deal dish or some sushi for my lunch, as these were 'good carbs' that would give me the energy I needed to be dancing all day. Although, these good carbs make me very bloated, so much so that I can barely pull myself off the floor in an attempt to do a sit up- and now it all makes sense.

In December I decided to start a 'thing', and one week tried having just a juice (as well as my normal breakfast and orange/banana as a snack if I was lagging) rather than my 'carbs' to see if this made a difference. Physically, I didn't look so bloated and felt a little more comfortable in myself (if my waist would like to reappear in 2017 I certainly wouldn't complain!), and my core strength dramatically improved to the naked eye (I could actually do more than one sit up- shock horror!). I know that between September and now my core strength has improved (albeit slightly- it's still an improvement), however I feel so much better pulling myself up on a 'liquid filled' stomach as it were.

And that is where Juice Wednesdays began, now almost every Wednesday you can find me with my juice or smoothie moaning about my hunger all day until it's time for my tea. I genuinely don't think I'm ever as excited for food as I am on a Wednesday evening, sure, the juice does 'fill me up'/keep me going throughout the day- although I'm always going to want to eat something on an empty stomach- I love food!

I'm thinking of doing another 'proper' juice cleanse in a couple of weeks time, and if I decide to I will document my progress, but for now Wednesday lunch times will do just fine,

Beki x
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Monday, 6 February 2017

A Few Treats For Myself...Part 1


As I mentioned in a previous couple of Blogposts, I went shopping in Bluewater last weekend and really decided to treat myself, and here are a few things I purchased when I got back to Plymouth...

Now you may remember reading in my Mini Chanel Beauty Haul that I really wanted to get my hands on the lipgloss in the shade 'Blizzard'. The range is currently in the process of being discontinued and for once in my life luck was on my side and Plymouth's Chanel counter had the gloss in stock. I am so so happy with this purchase, the gloss isn't sticky nor is it thin, and the perfect neutral rose gold tone suits my skin tone perfectly, and now I will be using this gloss with caution ahead of the day it does run out...

The next two items I planned on grabbing in Bluewater however they were either out of stock or unavailable. Nars' Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Sex Machine is a pencil I have wanted since I saw a picture of Perrie Edwards wearing it on Instagram. Now living where I live I don't get my hands on a Nars counter very often, and every time I have visited since March last year (both in the UK and Spain!) Sex Machine was out of stock. Sure, I could have ordered it online like I subsequently ended up doing, however there is something I really love about buying from a counter. Sex Machine is a perfect baby-pink nude, and the formula of the Velvet Matte Pencil is a new favourite, is so long lasting and comfortable- I can't wait to add more to my collection! 

Finally was Charlotte Tilbury's lipstick in Pillow Talk. Surprisingly I don't own her lip cheat in Pillow Talk, however now I own it in lipstick form, I think I might have to. It's a dark rose toned nude, and the brown tones certainly show up more on my skin, but none the less, the gorgeous colour along with that perfect formula which I have spoken of before was always going to be a winning combination.

Have you tried any of these lip products?

Beki x
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Sunday, 5 February 2017

Dear February // #blankthoughts



Dear February,

February is one of my favourite months of the year. 'Why?' I hear you ask, well, it is all because in every February I know what I want, or so I think.

I usually like to make my days busy, whether this is in my head or in reality, as having a sense of business makes me feel fulfilled, rather than being unsure of what I'm doing, which is how I ultimately end up subconsciously feeling 90% of the time.

I've spoken about my thoughts on the concept of time before, and how I often spend more time wishing time would freeze or pause so I could catch up rather than stop daydreaming and just getting on with it.

However, so far, the few days into February have been relatively productive, both mentally and physically, and I am telling myself to do more, even though there are some things I am avoiding.

So February, I hope we can be productive and positive together for the next 23 days,

Beki x



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Friday, 3 February 2017

Positive Body Positive Mind // #blankthoughts



Naturally, we tend to pick out our flaws and the things we dislike or 'hate' about ourselves rather than enhancing the things we love.

This may seem obvious, but for the past few weeks I've tried to focus on the things I 'love' about myself, and work to change the things I hate. Granted, I'll never spend money on plastic surgery A) because I can't afford it/probably will never afford it and B) As much I 'hate' these things I equally know they make me who I am.

Studying Dance has made me very aware of my fitness, stamina, flexibility and body. I'm not terrible, I just hate ab work, which incidentally the majority of basis' of strength within dance.  As I said on Wednesday, I still allow myself to have bad days, (probably more than I should) however I also keep working on building my core strength, something that I have always needed to improve ever since I was tiny.

For example, every week in our jazz class I dread doing our ab routines, not because I don't want to do them, but because I know my core isn't strong and I struggle with them. I try, and really try, and if you compare my strength from September (where I couldn't manage one!!!) to now where I can do the routine, I have improved massively. (And realising that I physically can't do any kind of exercise on a bloated stomach has helped majorly! I'll be writing more about 'Juice Wednesday's' soon...)

 There's still a long way for me to go and I will continue to work on this probably until the day I decide to stop exercising all together. However, I've been telling myself not to be 'scared' of the sit ups each day/week and just do them, and so what if I fall out of them and look like a fool. I know that I am working towards improving myself and frankly remind myself that you will never be perfect on the first attempt at anything, and even if you were, where's the fun in improving an trying again?

And that is why, my current 'Positive Body Positive Mind' mindset is currently doing me a world of good...

Beki x


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Wednesday, 1 February 2017

My Plans For February // #blankthoughts


A life moto I live by is 'You'll never feel complete and that's the fun of it', and this applies to all walks of my life.

I've decided that I'm going to spend my February bettering my health and specifically fitness. I don't think I'm overweight/drastically in need of losing weight, it would just be nice to lose a couple of pounds and feel alright about it. 

When I was ill and at my smallest, I didn't dislike my figure, I just wished I still had my boobs and my bum, and even though I was self conscious, I still felt comfortable. 

This month I'm going to be sensible(ish), and by that I mean the odd naughty treat here or there is fine, but I am really going to give being sensible a shot. I used to really love sitting on my exercise bike or going for a run for however long, and then I got lazy and life took over.


I'm not expecting drastic changes, but it would be nice to see what progress I make (if I make any) by the end of February.

Beki x

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