Monthly Archives: May 2016

5 of my favourite places to daytime drink in Liverpool

So guys, I did it! Bar my Dissertation, the university year is over. I submitted my last essay and sat my last (hopefully) exam! It’s debatable how well it went but in the words of my friend Ashley ‘submit it, forget it‘. I’ll deal with the marks when I get them and hopefully I’ll have done better than I expected. With the exam over my course mates and I decided there was only one way to celebrate- cocktails! Which got me thinking about my favourite places to drink in Liverpool. Now I’ll point out I am not big on nights out. I can’t dance and I’m not into club music so I mostly find the whole thing really awkward unless I’ve had one too many and then call me Beyoncรฉ on that dance floor- in my head at least! In reality I probably look more like Chloe from Geordie Shore… So I want to quickly point out that this list features places that I think are either good for afternoon drinks or relaxing in their beer gardens on a warm day. With that clarified, and in no particular order, let’s get started:

1) Roxy Ball Room

Right image via Aver

This is still relatively new to Liverpool and I was introduced to it by my friend when we first visited on her birthday. Situated in Liverpool One next door to Wahaca (an awesome Mexican street food restaurant), Roxy Ball Room resides on the top floor. Accessible by stairs and lifts, the entrance is covered in cool, bright graffiti. Inside there’s a bar and kitchen serving all sorts of treats and ping pong, beer pong and pool tables for hire. Outside is a terrace with picnic benches that looks out over Bluecoats and Liverpool One. The staff are friendly and make the best cocktails ever. We tend to get the staff specials, priced at ยฃ5 they’re super tasty and super strong. Or maybe I’m just a lightweight, either way they do the trick. The one pictured above left was a Gin, elderflower and cucumber mix that tasted heavenly.

2) Kazimier Gardens

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Image via Kazimier

I have an annoyingly bad habit of getting tipsy/drunk and not taking photos the way normal people do so I have no modern pictures of the Kazimier gardens by day. The lights at night are beautiful though and this is one of the few places I occupy of a night time. Day time drinks here though are just as good, especially when the sun is shining and the place has a real boho, festival feel. Their choice of craft beers is amazing and they often host gigs for local bands. There is a good range of food choices, even for non-carnivores like me! Prepare to battle it out for the table that’s styled like a boat, it’s the most coveted seat. To my friends at least!

3) Lady of Mann

image Image via The Good Pub Guide

Sometimes when you meet your friends from work, or in my case when you want to distract yourself from uni work, all you want is good beer/wine and someplace nice to chat. I love music but sometimes I just like getting tipsy and having drunken conversations and gossip with my nearest and dearest. That’s where the Lady of Mann comes in. Situated on Dale Street it’s a nice retreat from the bustling city centre. I visit here all the time with my friend Jojo and its just one of those places where ‘I’m only getting one drink’ becomes drunkenly stumbling out at last orders.

4) Tavern On The Green

image

Image via Yelp

Tavern sits on Chavasse Park, L1 and is another place I tend to visit with work friends due to how close it is to our work. The discount for working within Liverpool One is an added bonus! I love Tavern because most of its playlists are pretty much straight copies of the ITunes playlists I coveted as an angsty little 17 year old. They have an amazing selection of cocktails, beer and wine and their quiz nights of a Tuesday are always fun. They have plenty of indoor and outdoor seating but prepare to battle it out for a picnic bench when the sun and crowds are out!

5) Heebie Jeebies

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Image via Yelp

Heebies is probably known by almost everyone in Liverpool, especially the students mid week! I’ve been coming to Heebies ever since my youthful 18 year old days and all through my university life its always been a staple night out venue. Its music of choice is that of bands rather than club hits and for me that is always a massive plus. It offers DJ nights and gigs, its popularity is highlighted by the queues to get in of a weekend but once you’re in it’s worth it. Despite being known for its night life and funky decor, Heebies is also a really good venue for daytime drinks. Especially when the sun is out and you can bask in its outdoor courtyard. It has recently been renovated (the courtyard) and I’ve not actually visited since then but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before I do. Drinks are all priced fairly and when they do their pub quiz they even offer vegetarian hot dogs! What’s not to love?!

 

I realised as I was typing this that there is sooooooo many more places I could add but I’m wary of how long this post already is. Places like Shipping Forecast, Santa Chupitos and Hope & Anchor all deserve a shout out too. I feel like I’ll also be chastised for not adding places like the Botanical Gin Gardens and Oh Me Oh My but truth is I haven’t actually visited them yet! Although they are on my to do list I promise! As always I’d love to hear what you think, where are your favourite places to day time drink in Liverpool? Think I’ve missed any out? Just drop me a comment down below ๐Ÿ™‚

-Abbie

Follow me on Twitter via @abbieorbee

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19 thoughts I’ve definitely had as a 24 year old

I’m sure anyone who is at the early twentys stage of their life, or those who have already experienced it, will know/remember what a confusing time it is. You know you’re still young but compared to fresh faced 18 year olds you feel old.  However take into account demands and responsibilities of the ‘real world’ and suddenly you feel 12 years old again begging your parents to help you out and not sacrifice you to the world of bills and debt. The age of 25 looms over you and your younger friends all remind you that you’ll soon be ‘halfway to 50’ and you think oh god. How did this happen?? That age is a mere 3 months away, closer to 2 and 1/2 months if you want to be technical, for yours truly so as my birthday looms ever closer I thought I’d share 19 thoughts I’ve almost definitely had as a 24 year old.

1) How have I gone from being a young 23 year old to 24?! I’m so old. Stop singing happy birthday! STOP!

Via Giphy

2) Yeah I’ve got plenty of time to find a graduate job, I only graduated last…TWO YEARS AGO?! Is this a prank?

3) Fuck this I’m doing a Masters. Take me back to the student life!

4) What do you mean this is my last paid for holiday? Im your child! Okay I’m a childult. Don’t leave me behind Mum & Dad!

Via Giphy

5) Woo freshers! Wait are those people even legal to be in this club right now? Oh I forgot. That’s what being 18 looks like.

Via Giphy


6) My parents are still buying me Christmas clothes and everyone on Facebook is buying presents for their babies. What is life?

7) Yes I know you’re driving me back to my own apartment but that doesn’t mean I’ve moved out the family home for good.

8) Why is everyone from my undergrad so successful and I’m still in lectures. Why didn’t I apply for a graduate job???

9) Why is everyone around me suddenly getting engaged? We’re too young for that. Oh wait. No we’re not.

10) What? The Killers aren’t that old! I listen to Sam’s Town all the time, it’s definitely not 10 years old. Oh wait…once again how has this happened?


11) How has my life gotten here?

12) Maybe I should go down a different career path. If I could afford another BA I would be 26, 27…28?! 28 when I’d graduate again!!??

13) I want to produce documentaries and I’m 24. Fuck. I’m nearing my Media sell by date. Uhhubcriybuybcuhbwrcuhbwrcuhb. Another drink please.

 

via Giphy
 

14) Oh no graduation is looming close again, I can’t avoid the real world this time….well…there is always a PhD course…

15) No. I’m ready. I can do this, I’m going to apply for tons of jobs right now and be proactive!

16) I definitely can’t do this.

Via imgur

17) The age I want to be married and have kids by? 28 I guess, that’s the age I’ve always said anyway. Oh god that’s only 3 years away??? But I haven’t lived my life!

18) How have I not travelled the world?! How have I spent my young adult life solely in university and working part time jobs???

19) I’m just going to go to sleep. I’ll think about responsibilities tomorrow. Or the next day. Or the day after that. I’m still so young after all.

 

Via Giphy
 


May My Little Box: My Little Dolce Vita Box

Hi everyone! Two blog posts in the same week can you believe it? I’m proud of myself, usually this is where I bore everyone with excuses for why I’m such a lazy blogger soooo I’m going to give myself a pat on the back, especially considering I’m currently very hungover ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿผ Today’s blog post is going to be different from my last (for any new readers), I finally got the courage to post my blog through my Facebook so I think a lot of people I know would have only read my piece on cognitive enhancement. Judging from my stats though, the My Little Box reviews are my most popular posts and I’m glad that people get as excited about My Little Box as I do. It literally makes me feel like a kid at Christmas again, counting down the days of each month until my new box arrives and this months was SUPER early, which was a nice suprise. For anyone who doesn’t know about My Little Box: they’re a subscription service (based in Paris) in which every month you receive a box that has a different theme. What makes My Little Box different from other subscriptions such as Birchbox is that not only do you receive sample (and full size) beauty and grooming products, you also receive lifestyle products too. Things such as tshirts, tote bags, planters, jewellery and so on. Each box comes with a hand drawn illustration by My Little Box’s resident designer Kanako Kuno, which adds to the overall ‘cute/pretty’ feel of the box.

This months theme is Italy and the phrase ‘Dolce Vita’, Google tells me it means ‘a life of heedless pleasure and luxury’. If that’s wrong and I’ve just butchered the phrase I apologise but blame Google! 

Firstly I just want to point out, as I did in My Little Flower Book review, I’m happy the style has returned to the traditional box rather than the ribboned book. When you open the cardboard box you’re met with your pretty box and usually a sticker that I just stick either on the mirror or in random places in the flat, to which my boyfriend follows me around taking them all down. Men! As you can see this months sticker says ‘Baci baci’, again I had to Google this phrase and I’m told it means ‘Kisses, kisses’, or I guess maybe kiss kiss? I’ll just move on before I potentially falsely quote any more of the Italian language.

I love this months illustration, when I think of Italy I think of chic, sleek fashion (and good food obviously) and I think Kanako captured this perfectly. It’s not very often I’m jealous of illustrations but I want that outfit, real or not!

Another thing I was happy to see is that the quotes on cards have returned. My brain isn’t working well today, I’ll blame the alcohol so I’m sure there is a better term for those. Basically every month each box usually contains a nice little quote on good quality card that you can either frame or give to people or just collect. Everything is tied together neatly with a ribbon. Usually you have what I call the gimmick item here but this months box contained an extra lifestyle product (exciting!) which you can see below

Each month I end up, somehow, spoiling the suprise for myself. Usually by accidentally reading a spoiler on my Facebook newsfeed. This month however, I managed to avoid that so I had no idea what to expect. Looking at the smaller box I had figured it would be a piece of jewellery and I was right! I assumed the bigger box would be a scarf but I prefer what it actually is

It is in fact a hair turban, in the run up to summer and holiday season I’m very thankful for this. I personally love this pattern but I know it won’t be to everyone’s taste. But like it or not it will definitely come in handy whilst sunbathing, there is nothing more annoying than trying to keep hair off a sticky, sun screened face. It will definately be coming along in my suitcase this year but as this fits my general style anyway I’ll probably wear it of a day, here in England, too and work it into my style.

As I said before my guess at jewellery was right! Inside is a beautiful little ring that’s shaped like a leaf curled around your finger. Again this fits into my style really well so I’m very happy with this months lifestyle items. I would have uploaded a picture of myself wearing it but at the time my nail polish was chipped and looked a bit ugly so maybe I’ll post one to Instagram or Twitter at some point (I’ll give the links to follow me at the end!)

Finally we have the beauty/grooming products that always come in a handy drawstring back that is usually illustrated differently each month. I say it in all my reviews but for any new readers, these bags are amazingly handy and worth keeping hold of. I use them for storing toiletries whilst travelling and general organising.

Inside you usually receive three items. Occasionally you may receive an extra item but this month I got three:

Starting from the left we have a product from My Little Box’s own brand My Little Beauty. I personally love this brand as the packaging is always very neat, usually minimalistic and the products always smell amazing. This months is an illuminating moisturiser for legs, I’m guessing the purpose is to highlight a tan but unfortunately I’m like a milk bottle right now so I’ve not actually tried it out. I had a quick smell though and it has a very orange, citrus like scent so perfect for summer. Next is a body oil by the brand Baija. With My Little Box being a Parisian subscription service, the products received are always of a French background. I’d never heard of Baija until a few months ago when I received a floral moisturiser that was literally one of the nicest things I’ve ever smelt. Again I’ve not yet tried the oil but the green tea and jasmine scent is very refreshing and clean. Lastly we have another product from My Little Beauty, which is a decent sized sample of a fragrance called ‘la fille de l’air’ which, once again, trusty Google translates as ‘daughter of the air’. I’m usually sceptical about fragrances I don’t know about but I’m very pleased with the scent. It’s a very clean, subtle floral scent that is sweet yet not overpowering. I wouldn’t trade my other perfumes in for this entirely but it’s nice to carry around in your handbag which is exactly what I did last night.

Overall I’m really pleased with this months box. I’m not sure it’s my favourite ever as I always prefer receiving makeup items as opposed to moisturisers etc but I am still happy with the products I received. The lifestyle items are perfect for me and something I will definitely make use of! My Little Box ships different products so there is no guarantee you will receive the same products that someone else has and I know each country they ship to have slightly different contents. So I like to be nosy and ask what you all received too! Did you receive different products? Do you like them? How would you rate this months box? Drop me a comment below and let me know ๐Ÿ™‚ For now I’m going to try and convince my boyfriend to take me to Liverpool’s new Vegan restaurant Give Kitchen to nurse my hangover. If it works maybe I’ll even have two blog posts in one day! As always thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚

-Abbie

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated or endorsed by My Little Box to post these reviews (I wish this blog was successful enough for that haha), all boxes are paid for by me my boyfriend and all reviews are my 100% honest opinions

Connect with me on Instagram here: AbbienotAbby

Follow me on Twitter here: @abbieorbee

You can also read my April review here and my March review here!

Cognitive Enhancers

Hey guys!

It’s been almost a month since my last blog post, oh how time flies! Some of you may know and some of you may not,  I’m currently studying for an MA in International Journalism. I’ve wanted to keep up with regular blog posts but I didn’t anticipate how difficult it would be in the midst of end of year deadlines. Thankfully they’re mostly out of the way now. Bar an exam. And an essay. And a dissertation due August. But let’s forget about that for now hey?

Seen as I haven’t really left the library I don’t have any fancy places to blog about or any new buys to review so I thought I’d do a quick blog post on something different, I guess a more journalistic post? Yesterday I stepped out of my comfort zone and attended a seminar about issues surrounding new drugs: cognitive enhancers, legal and synthetic highs. That was in a broad term but the seminars focuses on everything from ‘what classes as evidence?’ to how drugs are sold on the dark web via The Tor network and Silk Road.

Now I must admit during quite a few of the talks I had absolutely no idea what was going on. I was kind of out of place in between all the Oxford, suited and booted types with my tweed cape and cleavage flashing shirt (not intentional, I lost a button on the walk in). One talk that did interest me was by a PhD student at LJMU, Jamie Tully, 25, who gave a short speech about his research that will take place over the next three years. Jamie’s talk was aimed to be entry level meaning no prior knowledge was needed which was perfect for me. Cognitive enhancers are something I know barely anything about, yet the media seem to hail these drugs as all sorts of miracles for the brain- my favourite example Jamie used was the Daily Mail and their use of the term ‘Viagra for the brain’.

To put it briefly cognitive enhancers is basically an umbrella term for drugs that are both legal (over the counter) for anyone and prescription based. Anything from caffeine to ginseng to Ritalin. Jamie will be primarily researching the usage of cognitive enhancers by University students. What I found most interesting was one of the aspects that Jamie’s research is investigating – morality and its preditctive capability on the use of these cognitive enhancement drugs. Although, as a scientist Jamie is primarily concerned with how morals effect use, as a Journalism student  with no science knowledge, I’m more interested in the moral dilemmas. By now we are accustomed to reading about athletes who have been disqualified or have their awards stripped due to testing positive for some form of banned enhancement such as steroids. In its most basic form we understand that it is immoral for one athlete to have an (albeit synthetic) advantage over another. But then what about at academic level? At school or college or university? If I was to sit an exam with my classmates and I took Ritalin recreationally, because I knew it would help me focus, would that make me any different from the athletes using steroids? In one way I guess you could argue that no, I’m no different but then where do you draw the line? Caffeine is a cognitive enhancer too so does that mean it would be unfair for a student to drink coffee before an exam? Would it give those who don’t drink coffee an unfair disadvantage?  

The seminar was definitely food for thought and although I initially felt out of my comfort zone I felt good for attending. Sure I took the semi-formal dress code a bit too far, dressing in smart layers during one of Liverpool’s only heatwaves and had to struggle against flashing cleavage all day but I felt like I’d achieved something with my day. I hadn’t just wasted it playing games or watching Netflix, I’d actually gone out of my way to learn about something new and interesting. I’d definitely recommend everyone to do the same at some point. Even if you’re not a student most universities have free seminars that are open to the public almost weekly, especially now the university year and classes are ending.

But I’m interested to hear what you think- do you know anything about cognitive enhancers? Maybe you’ve used them before? What do you think about Jamie’s hypothetical moral dilemma of the university student?

If you’re interested in this area you can message Jamie or follow him for updates on his research via @J_L_Tully

– Abbie

For lighter reading check my 7 stages of procrastination or last months My Little Flower Box review. I’ll be back with more soon I promise!