CHINA 2015

WARNING: LONG POST! At the start of April I went on one of the most incredible experiences I will ever do.

I went to CHINA! It was such a brilliant experience and today I’m here to show you some of the pictures I got. I went with a school group with people from loads of different years so it was nice to get to know people you wouldn’t normally speak to. The food was nothing like a Chinese takeaway, let me tell you that now! But before I tell you everything, who wants to see some photos?! *raises hand*The Forbidden City

The Forbidden City 5

Sketching in Calligraphy class

Tea House

Tea Cup

Rose Tea

Summer Palace 3

Summer Palace 2

Summer Palace

Real Pearls

Olympic Stadium Birds Nest

Kung Fu Show

Giant Pandas

Giant Pandas 2

Dinner

Bullet Train Fastest Train in the World

Great Wall of China

Blossoms

We laughed a lot

Tiananmen Square

View From Hotel

These photos were only about a quarter of what we did! It was exhausting, slightly daunting, and very home sickening when you’ve barely been out of Europe without your family and then you’re flying 10 hours from them. But, it was one of the most amazing things I have ever done and probably will ever do. I am so so so grateful that my parents could send me on a trip like this. It was also a great way to try out my photography skills and try a different culture of food. It is so different to England it was quite scary. For example, not many deformed men come up to you asking for money in the UK, do they now? I’m thinking of doing a travel tips post as I learnt a lot whilst out there. What do you think? Let me know in the comments!

Have you been to China? Or on another life-changing trip? Tell me all about it!

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

THE Best Brownies You Will EVER Make (Recipe)

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Brownies 1

That title’s quite a bold statement, isn’t it? But it’s true. Honest. Today I am sharing with you my most favouritest (?) brownie recipe. If you have ever tried the Costco Ghiradelli Brownies then you know what a great brownie is. Imagine that fudgy gooey chocolately deliciousness but if you eat two of my brownies you won’t feel violently sick: my brownies are slightly lighter in texture but still keep that gooey richness. It’s against the laws of physics baking, slightly mind-boggling but it tastes good. And in the end, that’s all that really matters, isn’t it?

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Brownies 2

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Brownies 3

Makes 12 ‘delicate’ density brownies. Double up for the whole chocolate experience.

YOU WILL NEED:

75g butter (or Stork)

100g dark chocolate (just use the basics, no need for Green and Black’s!)

1 egg (free range please)

100g caster sugar

25g self-raising flour

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 180, fan 160. Line and/or grease a square pan (the usual brownie kind)

2. Break up 75g (3/4) of the chocolate into squares and cut up the butter into chunks. Place in a heatproof bowl and melt together until only a few lumps are left. This can be done in the microwave or a bowl over a saucepan of lightly simmering water (the latter being safer as you can keep a closer eye on it)

3. Set aside for 7-10 minutes. This is the perfect time to measure out the rest of your ingredients. Also chop up the 15g of chocolate left over into chocolate chips. Use more if you wish, but don’t alter the 75g.

4. Beat the egg in, constantly beating so it doesn’t scramble. Add sugar gradually and beat. Sift in flour gradually and beat until almost combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

5. Transfer mixture to brownie tin and cook for 12 minutes plus, it varies. I should be firm but not firm enough that it’s overcooked.

6. Leave in tin for 5 minutes. Transfer to wire rack and leave brownies to cool…until cool enough to handle and wolf down before your sister finds them.

Enjoy, fellow chocoholics. These won’t disappoint.

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Lottie’s Life: New Dress and Daffodils

Hey, you! How are we? Good? Good. If you’re following me on Instagram then you would know that I came back from China last week! A post is hopefully coming next Monday, I would do it this Monday but honestly going through 1000 photos is harder than you think! Still suffering from jet lag unfortunately, don’t think I’ve ever felt so tired at 7pm every night! Anywhoooo, onto today’s #LottiesLife. I went shopping yesterday with mum and sister and found this GORGEOUS dress in H&M. It was originally £25, but reduced to £15 in the sale. It’s very pretty and I can totally see me wearing this in summer!

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Lotties Life Cream Dress

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Lotties Life Cream Dress Closeup

Pretty cute, huh? Now, I hope everyone has been enjoying this GLORIOUS weather we’ve been having in England. How beautiful has it been?! So I went to the market yesterday as well and we decided to buy some daffodil-esque flowers, a bargain at 5 bunches for £2! Then what happened? It started raining. RAINING, I REPEAT, RAINING. But I guess this picture sort of shows the flowers saying: ya know what? It’s all grey outside but I’m gonna keep BLOOMING. Very optimistic, Mr Daffodil, well done.

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Lotties Life Flowers in the Grey Skies

Hope you have all had a good week. How have you been enjoying the (previously) fantastic weather? Or, if you’re not in the UK, what’s it been like near you?

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Spring/Summer Playlist 2015 + How to Find New Music

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Flowers Playlist

I loooooove music. I love listening to it, making it and playing it (piano, guitar and ukulele if y’all was wondering) and finding new stuff to listen to. So as the festival season is starting (helloooo Coachella) I thought I’d put together a playlist for you guys. I’m going to list all the songs below but I will also put together a playlist on my Spotify (lotsoflovelottie). I’ll also list some tips for finding new music because let’s be honest, there’s only so many times you can listen to Lips are Movin’. Enjoy, little ones.

You Got The Love – Florence and the Machine

Next Year (RAC mix) – Two Door Cinema Club

You’re On – Madeon

Sun – Two Door Cinema Club

Attracting Flies – Aluna George

Reflections – Misterwives

Superlove – Charli XCX

Ship to Wreck – Florence and the Machine

Ce Jeu – Yelle

Riptide – Vance Joy

Ain’t Nobody – Jasmine Thompson

Been There Before (Shook Remix) – Ghost Beach

Swept Away (Original Mix) – Para for Cuva and Anna Naklab

Comfortable (Lightwaves Remix) – The Knocks and The Ambassadors

Hotel California – Eagles

Cool Kids/Riptide – The Queen and King ft. Less Is More

Billie Jean – The Civil Wars

Stolen Dance – Milky Chance

L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N – Noah And The Whale

Forget – Marina and the Diamonds

Say My Name – ODESZA ft. Zyra

Oceans – Coasts

California – Delta Spirit

COOL – LE YOUTH

Shake, Shake Shake – Bronze Radio Return

Heartbeat (Lightwaves Remix) – VÉRITÉ

CLICK HERE for this playlist on Spotify

TIPS FOR FINDING NEW MUSIC

– Spotify WILL be your best friend. Go on to the ‘Browse’ section and see what they’re suggesting!

– Is it just me that gets annoyed when Youtubers don’t list songs in the description box? That’s what Shazam was made for! Or if that doesn’t work, try Googling some of the song lyrics.

– Listen to different radio stations.

– Look at other country’s charts. Or even the charts from 10 years ago!

– Try different genres, such as Indie or Jazz (or K-Pop…)

Hope you enjoyed that! I’ve never done a post focused on music before, it was really fun!

What are your favourite songs and artists? I’d love to try some new music!

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Best Study Tips: Tried and Tested!

I know, a school related post? We haven’t seen one of them since my Back To School Wishlist back in September! Now I know that most schools do GCSE’s in May/June and there are lots of final assessments around so I thought this would be the perfect time for a roundup of study tips! There are probably some you’ve seen before, and some you haven’t, but they’re actually tried and tested by yours truly so you know I’m not just making up some rubbish. Enjoy!

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Study Tips Notebooks

1. Write up a schedule This is sooooo vital for me. If I don’t know how many topics or subjects and how long they’re going to take to revise, I will leave it 2 days before exams and it doesn’t end well. Ever! You can find some really cute schedules on Pinterest, I found this especially cute printer-friendly one from the lovely Landee at landeeseelandeedo.com, I use it for blog scheduling. Find it here.

2. Google example questions This is great but remember to ask your teacher if you’re doing current papers or old ones, don’t want to find you’re doing the test all over again! And unless you know you can Google the answers to the questions, make sure they come with an answer sheet so you can mark yourself. This is great so that you can familiarise yourself with what you need to go over again.

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Study Tips Study Space

3. Find your own study space I find it really hard to study with people talking and loud music playing around me. So I love to move myself up to my bedroom and either throw a load of cushions on the floor or keep my desk cute and tidy to encourage and inspire me (how deep). But studying in silence is not fun so using a website like A Soft Murmur which provides soft background music is great. I love mixing the waves and coffee house options together!

4. Repeat the information When you’re reading through something and it feels like it just doesn’t make sense, just say it out loud. Somehow our brain (or at least mine does) feels like that if we say it out loud, it’s true and there’s sense in that stupid Chemistry question. If you really want to you could record it on your phone then listen to it whenever you want.

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Study Tips Notebooks

5. Put the facts in a way you understand For me it’s baking. So I had to learn how a fractional distillation column works the other day. To help me remember the different properties as you go down the column, I imagined it as a badly mixed cake! So the butter is light in colour and runny when melted so that goes to the top. And that dark and thick sugar stays at the bottom (obviously there is no butter and sugar in a column but do you see what I mean?) I also like to draw it out to help me!

6. Find out what type of learner you are There are hundreds of online tests you can do to see what type of learner you are. As I’ve got older I’ve become more of a visual learner but I used to be almost equal in everything! Once you find out your learner, read more study tips for your type of learner. This will mean that they’re most likely going to help you! You can probably see that some of my tips are leaning towards the visual side.

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Learner Results

I hope those tips helped you guys! I really enjoyed writing it actually, made me remember how on Earth I got a B in a Physics test!

What are your favourite tips? Please share them down below!

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Lottie’s Life: Insurgent and 24 Sharpies for £8.49!

Hey guys! So on Saturday I went to see Insurgent with my friend and then we went shopping afterwards. I never really go to the cinema but we had some free tickets so ya know YOLO and all that. I’m going to do a mini review of Insurgent  (SPOILER ALERT) then tell you about my bargain Sharpies, enjoy!

 

 

I thought Insurgent was good, but not as good as Divergent. I’ve read the book and the story line was nothing like it. There was no mention of Will’s sister, the alliance Tris had with Marcus and where on Earth did that weird box come from? Also, Jeanine was killed right at the end not 3/4 way through, and was shot by Evelyn not Tori. The simulation was really weird, don’t remember that at all. There was also a lot of pauses for Tris and Tobias to stare into each other’s eyes, that’s all very well but in the middle of every scene? No thanks. It is meant to be a teen movie but still, I’m a teen and I was gagging slightly. I thought the graphics were ok but some of the backgrounds looked very fake and the weird pixels when Tobias was the sim. All very strange! But I did love the excitement and adventure of the film, just like the first one. But the story line did let it down, if I’m honest!

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Lotties Life Sharpies

Lots of Love Lottie Blog Lotties Life Sharpies 2

Yes guys, you did read that right. I got 24 sharpies for £9.49 (because my other item was a £1 pack of Mini Eggs, duh). I got this from W H Smith, but it is only in store unfortunately. There was another pack of 24 Sharpies but they were £10, because they had some fancy shmancy metallic pens. This is is the 80’s Glam pack, I still think these are better! I really wanted some  more Sharpies as there are so many Spring DIY’s going around at the moment that involve Sharpies, so these were pretty perfect!

Well, that’s what I’ve been up to this week! Tell me what you’ve been up to, I really do like chatting with you guys 🙂

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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