Tag Archives: happiness

Thoughtful Tuesdays : Business Start-Ups

So, for those of you that follow me, I want to apologise for not being 100% real about me and my business journey.

I’m a huge one for keeping up with the optimism and the positive air, even though sometimes I am extremely stressed and uncertain on things.  And the reason I’m being open with this, is that it dawned on me today, when I left my accountants – he’s literally my ‘Ask Jeeves’  – that there are so many of you out there also running your own businesses, or trying to set them up, that are also in the same rollercoaster of a boat. (Sounds more like the log flume but you get the picture).

I want to try and relate and also get some comfort from those who are on the ‘log flume’ journey, knowing that we are in it together.

No one tells you how hard it is; how you suddenly should know everything. Because honestly I have to play about 25 different job roles within my business and, holy moly, I do it quite well but it’s definitely not always a smooth ride.

I encourage, and will always do so, for everyone to follow their dreams and do what they love but I have to be real and say being an “entrepreneur” is probably the hardest career to go down. Definitely the most rewarding but the most challenging.

Key factors to consider or things to have when opening your own business, and ways around them if you don’t:

Contacts
Some of you may be lucky that we are already surrounded by people who can help benefit our brands and businesses, and if so, GREAT, use them!

Regardless if you know them, and it may be feel awkward, asking for help or for insight when it’s for free should be the first thing on your list to do. And if you don’t… well, NETWORK! There are SO many networking events out there. Get your best clothes on, jazz yourself up and go and talk to complete strangers, because honestly it’s done wonders for me. www.eventbrite.co.uk

Finance
So this is sometimes a tricky one. I started my own by initially working and saving, working and saving and working and saving! Then I put that money into the start of this business. Having started and shown promise, I was then lucky to have some help from family to help me progress further!

So if you know someone who can help then great! If not, there are plenty of options – crowdfunding, bank loans, government grants and more. Or work and save as I did. All the options are out there.

The right attitude
Working for yourself can be challenging, SO CHALLENGING, so make sure you REALLY want to achieve your goal. Badly! I’m lucky that I’ve always been that annoying 5.45 am riser, bouncing full of energy, ready to take on the day. But, truth be told, I’m also very disorganised, so it took me a while to really get into a routine for working. You have got to want it to work because if you don’t put 100% effort in… then who will?

And for those of you that are a total whizz at everything with the contacts, the funding and the right attitude, then go be fabulous my friend! But what I’ve learnt is that sometimes it isn’t always possible to have all of those key things.

It’s weird to call myself an entrepreneur because when I started, I was just simply ‘Evie’, creating some cool stuff in the kitchen and selling them! I liked to think of myself more as a creative. It is only until now that I’m trying to grow my business (and oh it’s growing), and since going to E-Spark in Manchester (business accelerator), that I’ve realised that I AM an entrepreneur …and really I need to start acting like one.

Cue briefcase and blazer!

Just kidding. But honestly, it does mean that I have to play the parts of roles that, really, I know nothing about. It means that things are going to get tricky and I can’t just stick to the parts I love. And finally, it means that your motivation and attitude needs to be on fire.

I’m currently reading a book called ‘Create Special’ by Jim Duffey, which I won by the way for presenting the best Pitch in a small competition (smug Evie). And it is amazing! I highly recommend you read it as it’s already providing me with even more motivation.

Enough from me now,

Much love

Evie Xx

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5 Ways To Beat The Winter Blues

The darker days are looming, the break up with summer ’17 is official and I’m feeling just as heartbroken as you. With winter around the corner, it’s normal to be feeling a little bit drowsy, lethargic and unmotivated. Don’t worry, we’re all in this together.

 

If you’re already turning to the hot chocolate instead of the iced tea, or the scarf instead of the sunglasses, or rolling out of bed instead of springing, then check out these 5 ways to fight the winter blues.

 

Take Up a New Hobby!

 

It’s cool, I get it. The last thing you want to be doing when you’re waking up in the dark to go to work and coming home again in the pitch black is finding the energy to do something other than snooze on the sofa binge-watching Netflix.

 

However, according to Sue Pavlovich of the Seasonal Affective Disorder Association (SADA), Keeping your mind active with a new interest seems to ward off symptoms of SAD, says Pavlovich. “It could be anything, such as playing bridge, singing, knitting, joining a gym, keeping a journal, or writing a blog. The important thing is that you have something to look forward to and concentrate on,” she adds.

 

Dose up on Vitamin D

 

It’s the time of the year where we’re swapping the sunshine for vitamin D capsules. Since we see a break in the gloomy clouds approximately once a month during winter, it’s wise to get your vitamin fix elsewhere.

It’s not a coincidence that you may feel low during this time of year, so many diseases correlate with vitamin D deficiency – the most relevant being depression.

 

So, fight them winter blues and head to your local pharmacy ASAP! The New York Times best-selling author Joseph Mercola, DO, suggests that adults take as much as 5,000 IU per day. Certain foods are good sources of vitamin D, including cod liver oil, swordfish, salmon, tuna, milk, yogurt, sardines, eggs, and cereals fortified with vitamin D.

 

Go Carb Crazy

 

Carbs are your friend. Eeeeeeek!!! Yes, you read correctly. Complex carbs don’t cause spikes in blood sugar that can create roller-coaster moods; they also increase levels of serotonin in the brain so you won’t feel as drowsy and as dull as the weather.

Opt for whole grains and complex carbs like spinach, yams, broccoli, beans, zucchini, lentils, skim milk, and more, which will fill you up while also providing long-lasting nourishment.

 

Don’t Over-Indulge

 

Unfortunately, ‘storing food for the winter’ isn’t a good enough excuse to be eating rubbish. You’re not going into hibernation – it’s winter, not the ice age. Researched published in the Public Health Nutrition journal found that people who consumed fast foods were 51 percent more likely to have low moods. During this time of year, try super hard to stick to your routine, it will benefit you now more than ever.

 

Fish are Friends…Not Food!

 

Omega 3 is your best friend during the snowy season. Studies have long linked deficiencies of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids to Seasonal Affective Disorder. A 2011 study in Nature Neuroscience has even demonstrated how lower omega-3 levels change brain activity. With high levels of omega 3 racing around your body, you’re also more likely to fight off the dreaded cold and flu that creeps up on us every icy season.

 

With these tips in mind, you stand the best chance of staying healthy (and most importantly happy!) during the winter, whilst maintaining a balanced diet and energy levels.

 

Hope this helps!

 

Much Love,
Evie Xx

SMOOTHIE OF THE WEEK

Hello friends and followers,
I hope you’re all doing well and the happiest one can be.
I have a smoothie to share with you all that is just…divine.

I wish I could keep it a secret to myself but at this moment in time I’m bursting with energy and love and I must share it amongst those who love their greens and goodness.

PROTEIN MINT BLISS

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One whole coconut (obviously we’re not using the shell!)
3 frozen Bananas
1/2 tsp of spirulina
1 scoop (24 grams) of vanilla pea protein
1 dash of peppermint essence

Whizz this concoction together in a blender until ingredients are all combined and the mixture is of a nice smoothie-like consistency. Pour this mint-full beauty into you’re nearest glass or jam jar (if you’re that kind of person) and enjoy!
It’s probably the most delicious smoothie I’ve ever come across and a perfect post-workout meal especially when you’re not exactly feeling you can stomach a big meal just yet.

Please, give it a go! You wont be disappointed.
Let me know your thoughts.

Much love friends of the world

Evie X

 

It’s a smoothie thang’

Good morning world,

I wish you all a fabulous weekend and hope it’s even better when you try out my FAVOURITE delicious green smoothie.

So just to recap my rules for the whole juice/smoothie malarkey:

  • no more than 1 piece of fruit per juice/smoothie
  • an add in of a superfood

A green goddess of a smoothie : 

Juice: 2 celery stalks
1/2 cucumber
2 handfuls of spinach
2 broccoli stalks
1 handful of kale
1 chard leaf
4 sprouts (this is the only time you’ll find me consuming these awful balls of veg)

Then blend with half an avocado and 1/2 tsp of spirulina.

This is the ultimate blend of a drink, super creamy and filling.

If you like your drinks less earthy, try with less spirulina and add in either :

– mint leaves
– some ginger
– lime
-half an apple

Any of the above additions will make it an even more delicious drink. My favourtie is ginger!

Because of its high fat and fiber content, this is the PERFECT drink for any time of the day.

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Enjoy lovers.

 

Much love

Evie X

 

WAKE UP // SHAKE UP

Bonjour le monde!
The past few weeks I’ve had a fair few people asking me if I can put together a short FAT BURNING exercise routine for them. Potentially my readers too, would like to try out one I have devised. A pure beauty she is.
Now of course for some of you, you may require in depth one on one work  to reach your goals but for most this one off routine should help blast that unwanted fat – It’s more about how much YOU push YOURSELF.
The harder you go, the more you burn!

When wanting to burn fat, the best method to go with is HIIT as I explained in my “Morning Blast” post. A style of training called Tabata is something you should absorb, it is what I use for a lot of my own training.  Note it down and research it later.

Here goes a short devised fat burning beauty;

Firstly take note; we’ll be working at a 2;1 ratio. Working out for 20 seconds, and resting for 10. No more, no less… Aim to keep within the time frames.

WARM UP

March in place for 10 seconds after each warmup exercise.

Jumping Jacks
Duration: 20 seconds

Toy Soldier
Swing left leg and right arm to touch toes. Repeat on other side.
Duration: 20 sec.

Hackey Sack
Tap left ankle with right hand. Repeat on other side.
Duration: 20 sec.

High Knees 
Duration: 20 sec.

ROUND ONE-
Remember 2:1

Jump rope/Skipping rope  ( if no jump rope, use your imagination! )

rest

Burpees 

rest

Jumping squats

rest

Jumping jacks into squats

rest

Repeat all of above and move straight into –

ROUND TWO

Fast Feet – sprint on spot

rest

Pushup

rest

Quad Touch Jump Squats
Place hands on quads, jump and reach with hands to ceiling. Land in squat position.

rest

Mountain Climbers

rest

Repeat all of above and move straight into

ROUND THREE

Skaters

rest

T Jacks
Start with arms in a T. One touches the floor while the other is still out in a T.

Rest

Single Leg Burpees

Rest

Fast butt kicks

Rest

Repeat all of above and move straight into

ROUND FOUR abs-mazing

Plank Ups
From plank position, place right palm down, then left, to get in pushup position. Then, come back down onto forearms.

Rest

Bicycles

Rest

Supermans

Rest

Crunches

Rest…END

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casually worn out

 

HALLEJUAH. This style of workouts is SO effective when performed to our best ability! Only you can make a change to your body, only you can push yourself to the end! Make it happen. Why not start today?
Get off your bums and put your laptop down, go grab a big glass of water and sweat towel and jump into some comfy clothing. Whizz some pumping music on, and get to work.
20 seconds GOGOGO, 10 seconds rest.
Try this every morning before breakfast if possible and if the timings not all good for you in the morning then do this workout when you can fit it in EVERY DAY.. theres no excuses. You DONT need a lot of time for this and you DONT need a gym.
Give it 2 weeks maximum of doing this routine each morning and I promise you you’ll see and feel the difference phsically and mentally. Not only will fat be dripping off you, your cardio ability will actually improve!!

Double whammy, Enjoy and let me know how you get on!

Much love X

A smile for a smile

I noticed today that the sound of laughter makes me smile.

The sight of friends rejoicing makes me feel warm inside.

On my way home from work today, I saw a young boy showing off his car to his Grandma, holding his (what I believe to be) driving test papers… I couldn’t stop smiling for the rest of my journey home.

It’s funny how little things like that can have an impact on someone else too… someone else out of the situation.

I feel we’ve become a world where there is less and less eye contact with strangers, less warm smiles to walkers by, and less “please” and “thank you”. I’m too sure why we all think we’re better than the person next to us not to crack a smile because at the end of the day no matter who we are, we are all on the same path and it may just be you can change a strangers day with just one smile…

A few of my personal friends reading this will probably be cringing at how soft I sound but I felt I needed to write this as honestly I bounce off peoples energies and although I was already buzzing inside with happiness, seeing that small moment of laughter and joy made my cheshire cat smile grow even more.

The more you smile, the more everyone else will.
The more you love, the more love you’ll feel around you.
The more you compliment, the more positive air you’ll be surrounded with.
Make someone smile today!

 
It’s friday, enjoy

 

Evie X

 

Uni : the be all or end all

Firstly, this is just an article on how to keep yourselves in fine shape through those party months of your new chapters.

Hello European Lovers!
It’s that time of year again for us to get started or head back to university. Summer is, unfortunately, over now and term is just beginning!!

Just dropped my brother back off at Leeds university , unbelievably excited for him to start his last year of uni adventure! I’m sure a lot of you, who are just starting off in the first year of university, are feeling a whole mix of emotions! Well let me wish you all the best and assure you its all going to be tip top toe!!
Words of wisdom; Get social, and throw yourselves into uni life. Make it count!!

This post today actually applies also to the ‘travelling souls’ (my favourite kind of people!!) as well as Uni students; it goes one way or another…. I hope you’re all getting my drift.

It happens to all of us, to grow or shrink in size, so to be speak.
Don’t let Uni life get the better of you!! Keep on top of what you’re consuming, what you’re ‘downing’, and how active/inactive you’re becoming, because, trust me, this lifestyle change brings big physical change.

We all say it, think it and know it …so don’t do it!

It’s hard at uni, especially for the Freshers. For those who are heading back, you’re in a routine, you know what to expect, keep up with the good habits.
For Freshers, alcohol is going to take over your lives!
And what goes hand in hand with being blindly drunk? Fat bloomin’ food! UH OH…

TIPS FOR THE UNI BUMS –

1) Do your 15 minute morning HIIT!!
Blast that fat, dedication, determination and commitment – do not slack. Keep winning at life. Check out my ‘morning blast’ post for some ideas.

2) drink VODKA, LIME AND SODA. Oh yeeeeeeeee, my one and only. I personally believe this to be the queen and king drink of health in the alcohol society. Hallelujah. As I hope all of you know, drinking = calories. It’s ze juices and fizzy pop that contain a lot of the crappiness that ends up sitting on parts of our body we hate. Muffin top mania! SO sticking to V.L.S is the best way forward, a ‘guilt-free beverage’!  The soda also keeps you hydrated, meaning no stinky headache the next day! Hurrah!!

3) KEEP A LOCK ON THE GOODIES CUPBOARD. Now this is my WORST habit, that I seriously need to lock down. I, somewhat, turn into a fatty food eating monster when I come in from a heeeeeavy night out. It’s just not okay… I hope there are a few of you out there that can share my pain… but, yes. stay away from the midnight feasting. It’s never pretty.

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4) Choose wisely.
Okay so we all know that healthy foods costs a lot more ‘dolla’. Because that makes sense doesn’t it??? Students on a tight budget welcome to your array of Mcdonald’s burgers, whilst the other half can have champagne and caviar. Okaaaaaaay.

There are ways around this – Don’t use the money thing as an excuse, because if you’re that determined, and that well driven, maybe you’ll think that you don’t need that pair of shoes this week or you don’t need to go out boozing tonight… No, instead you’re going to help yourself to something else, bar the super noodles.
Try having eggs for breakfast, value eggs? They’re still eggs. Learn to love eggs. I adore them. Have your lunch, whatever that may be, and, perhaps for a dinner, Chilli con carne. Use turkey mince (leanest meat) as your base and go ahead as normal. Make a big batch and freeze the rest for later use.

Most of all, just be active. Join a sports team, get a job, or even dance all night… All of these things, although different, allow your amazing machine (body) to move and stretch and twist whilst being SOCIALLY ACTIVE too.

Do not turn Uni life into Sloth life. Be aware of the environment you are in. Enjoy it but stay on top.

Remember:

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Much Love X

SWEET POT : RED PEPP : COCO MILK WARMING SOUP

Holy effin’ Moly,
Unbelievable that September is here and SO winter is already on it’s way to our front doors… Don’t get me wrong, this time of year I love!! I’m the biggest festive person. Hurray. If we jump ahead a month or two : I loooove wrapping up snug, having fires, getting huuuuuge sausages, delicious hot chocolates and mulled wines at the christmas ( german ) markets ( so blooming excited!! Yes… 4 beautiful months away), going ice skating and doing all those other winter things. OH YES, IT’S BECOMING THAT TIME OF YEAR.

My humble abode

My humble abode

However, ( and that is a strong however) as I’m sure the majority of you, who too experience cold winters will agree with me, the delightful winter chill is just not okay; not being able to button up your shirt properly because your fingers are frozen, or catching the lovely cold that seems to pass round like wild fire or even looking so pale it’s ghostly. Meh.
WELL I guess my positive inner self is meant to jump in at this point and say ; “Where there’s a high, there’s a low” . But  SERIOUSLY eh presto, CHRISTMAS IS ROUND THE CORNER.

Anyhow I’ve gathered you all here today because I want to share a little loco something with you, so read  c a r e f u l l y  because I’m bringing to you… as promised, a bloomin’ loco with coco soup. Boo’ya!

How does this tickle your fancy – SWEET POTATO, RED PEPPER AND COCONUT MILK SOUP. Eh?

Absolutely spandanglin’ delightful.
Okay here goes; you may want to note this down for your next food shop-

 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 large onion – diced 
 60 mL Coconut oil
freshly ground black pepper
3 Celery stalks  – chopped 
3 large Carrots – chopped
3  cloves garlic, minced
4 large roasted red peppers – coarsely chopped
1  Litre vegetable stock
250 ml  coconut milk
Large handful of fresh sweet basil, thinly sliced

Okay firstly preheat your oven to 190 degrees, then prep all your veg as advised in the ingredients list.
Done??
Now the boring bits over, lets get down to it!

Place the sweet potatoes and the onions on a baking sheet. Drizzle with a teeny bit of the Coco oil and sprinkle black pepper to taste. Toss to coat and roast those babies for around 20 minutes or until golden.

Time over?? Fab, now set aside.

Heat the remaining coconut oil in a large  pan over a medium-high heat and then throw in the celery, carrots, garlic and seasoning(  I, for one, do not use salt…it’s the devil but If one loves the salt rocks, add in as desired.) Stir in the roasted red peppers and sweet potato mixture and cook on medium for 10 minutes.

Oh yea, now it’s time to get LOCO WITH COCO. Add the vegetable stock and coconut milk. Season with salt and pepper and increase the heat  in order to bring the bubbles alive. As soon as it starts boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer soup, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes. Once done,  remove from heat and allow to cool for five minutes before using a blender.

I use a blender but you can use whatever instrument fits in order to puree the soup to the desired consistency. I loooove it thick and creamy with a hint of spice ( got to love the pepper ) but YOU can tweak it to make it  your own.

Finalement, garnish with basil or coconut shavings and boom, you’ve just got bloody LOCO with COCO in a winter special soup.

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Let me know how you go and please send me your versions!! I would love to see how you go. Go get cosy on the sofa, get the fire lit and round the troop up.
Enjoy your loco with coco soup!!

Much love X