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What I Did: Hotel Indigo Launch Party

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Last night I was invited along to the launch party (as well as a little snoop around the rooms) of Hotel Indigo; a brand new boutique hotel that’s opened up right in the heart of city centre, just off Queen Street.  Not only was it fab night with live music and fancy grub (courtesy of the rooftop Marco Pierre White Steakhouse), but the hotel itself is stunning (it’s a blogger’s dream!), with little nods to Welsh culture, language and history are dotted throughout the reception area and the rooms.  Such a cool place to stay if you’re up for a weekend away in the Welsh Capital! 🙂

“The minute you walked in the joint… ba-damp!”

If you’re on Queen Street, it’s definitely worth taking a turn down old Dominions Arcade to see the new murals and pop into the cosy reception area of Hotel Indigo for a cup of coffee.  The walls are covered with Welsh iconography; from framed pictures of corgis, poetry by Dylan Thomas, daffodils, sheep… you name it, it’s up there (…except for a Love Spoon!  Get on that pronto tonto, Hotel Indigo! 😉 ).  There’s also a few hints at Wales’ past, with the caged canary and lit mining helmets behind the front desk a little tribute to King Coal.






I absolutely loved these quirky plates with Max Ernst-esque engravings and old Welsh sayings.  My Welsh is a little rusty guys, but I think this one means, “Every bird loves the sound of its own voice.”






The launch party moved up into Marco Pierre White’s Rooftop Bar and Steak Restaurant – including a terrace with views right across the city. 🙂


Couldn’t resist jumping into the photo booth with some fellow Welsh Bloggers: Leanne (The Globetrotter GP), Laura (Side Street Style), and Kacie (The Rare Welsh Bit). 🙂

Such a great night!  If you ever fancy coming to Cardiff for the weekend, then definitely check out Hotel Indigo for a taster session in Welsh Culture 🙂

Have a great weekend everyone! x

Happy Birthday Bungle!

My bestie turned one on Saturday, and seeing as today is the dreaded Blue Monday (the most depressing day of the year according to the media) what better way of bringing a bit of sunshine to your feeds than a bumper, image-heavy Bungle post?

It’s been such an amazing year.  Sunny and I had always wanted a dog – especially a Golden Retriever – and we couldn’t believe our luck when a Goldie not far from us had a litter last January (Friday the 13th, which should have been an omen really!).  Bungle is one of a kind.  He can be difficult and stubborn (I’m pretty sure I’m the neighbourhood laughing stock – he drags me around the block, knocks me off my feet and decides to hump me in the middle of the road on the daily), but we love him to bits.  He’s the friendliest dog in the world and makes us laugh every single day (check out his Instagram for a daily dose of his trouble making).  And because of that, we spoil him rotten. 😉

Oh come on, of course I made him a birthday cake!  It’s a dog-friendly cupcake with a cream cheese and peanut butter blob of frosting.






Have a great week everyone! ♡

10 Female Welsh Bloggers to Watch in 2018

10 Female Welsh Bloggers to Watch in 2018 - The Cardiff Cwtch

If there’s one thing that I bloody love about the internet (…other than Spotify, Wikipedia and my ASOS wishlist) it’s the fact that it allows you connect with so many like-minded, creative peeps you’d have otherwise probably never met.  Before I started blogging there were times where I felt incredibly lonely when it came to my own creativity; taking pictures, cooking and throwing my thoughts down was something I did completely on my own and only shared with my family and friends.  Before I started blogging I had absolutely no idea how many soul sisters there were just around the corner.  There are loads of talented Welsh Bloggers out there – waaaay too many to cram into just one blog post – but here’s a handful of my favourite online ladies as well as a few recent discoveries to get you started. 🙂

1. Rachel of “Rachel the Hat

I first came across Rachel over on Instagram. I was initially drawn in by her colourful daily outfit posts but quickly became hooked on her fun and friendly Stories updates and her down to earth personality.  She’s also got a killer blog and YouTube Channel, hosts Blogger linkups and was recently chosen by Laura Ashley as their Style Crush for December.

Suggested Posts: Not Keeping up with the Insta-Jones’ – Stopping the Constant Buying“, “Five Ways to Downsize Your Wardrobe

2. Christy of “Style Rarebit

I’m continually blown away by Christy’s daily fashion and beauty posts over on Instagram, as well as her clean and crisp looking blog.  And I can confirm that she’s just as stunning and as lovely in person as she is in her beautiful photographs 🙂

Suggested Posts: When am I going to ‘Make it’?“, “Flower Shopping

3. Gwennan of “Twenty Something Meltdown

If you’re into Bullet Journals and Stationary then you seriously need Gwennan on your blogroll.  As well as being a talented illustrator, she also blogs all things lifestyle over at Twenty Something Meltdown and was even nominated as Lifestyle Blogger of the Year at last year’s Blogosphere Awards.  You’ll LOVE her real and relatable Instagram posts.  (Also, I’m pretty sure we live right around the corner from each other – I have literally no idea how we haven’t bumped into each other down the supermarket yet)

Suggested Posts: Two Hearty Meals to Make in Winter“, “43 Things You Remember if you grew up in Wales

4. Naomi of “Teatime with Naomi

I’ve always wanted to go to Japan and so lived vicariously through Naomi’s blog posts and Instagram back when she was teaching in Nagasaki.  Now she’s back in the UK and studying for an MA in Creative Writing in Bath, her cosy blog is still just as addictive with posts about feminism, mental health and writing 🙂

Suggested Posts: You Are Enough“, “Why I Just Can’t Go for a Walk

5. Lottie of “This Girl Is

Lottie’s only been blogging since October but I love her style and her Instagram is absolutely banging.  Definitely go follow her if you’re not already 🙂

Suggested Posts: Coffee Table Stylin’“, “This Girl Is

6. Annie of “Annie Bishop

I absolutely LOVE Annie’s photography over on Instagram and her style carries right on over to her blog where she writes about music (she’s freelanced writing gig and album reviews) and her travels (definitely check out her “Cities Stories” if you’re planning a Eurotrip any time soon!).

Suggested Posts: Embracing a Settled Life“, “A Beginner’s Guide to Cardiff

7. Charlee of Rose above the Thorns

Charlee recently lopped off 12 inches of her lovely long hair to give to the Little Princess Trust, raising £500 to boot, which is amazing!  Based in Swansea, she also blogs budget fashion, beauty and lifestyle over at Rose above the Thorns and also helps run the Welsh Bloggers Twitter Account (also, her pup Beau is so cute!).

Suggested Posts: “Sustainable Fashion: What is it, and how can we make it more accessible?“, “How to Feel Pretty in a World Full of ‘Perfect’ Social Media

8. Charlie of “Charlie’s Chapter

Fellow Cardiff foodie Charlie blogs all things food and lifestyle over at Charlie’s Chapter, and I love seeing snaps of what she’s recently cooked up over on her Instagram.  Definitely one to watch if fresh and healthy cooking is one of your top priorities for 2018!

Suggested Posts: Cardiff’s Top 5 Breakfast Spots“, “Meal Prep Top Tips: Charlie’s Cheats

9. Leanne of Be Your Natural Self

I first started following Leanne over on Instagram as I totally admire her no nonsense approach to fully embracing life, caring less about “perfect” and being yourself.  As well as blogging beauty and lifestyle, she also sings and supports the Alzheimer’s Society.

Suggested Posts: “Why Instagram Perpetuates my Feeble Obsession with Acceptance“, “When I’m Skinny I’ll be Hayley Williams

10. Lucy of Lucy Mary

Lucy has only been blogging for a year, but you’d never know it!  It’s clear she’s put in so much work to her lifestyle blog Lucy Mary, where she writes about everything from Wellbeing and living with Cystic Fibrosis, to Fashion and Personal Growth.

Suggested Posts: We’re all Different, but Equal“, “80 Acts of Kindness

Have a fab weekend everyone! X

Indian Potato and Cauliflower Fried Flatbreads

Other than a Chicken Jalfrezi, there are two dishes I’m likely to have a strop over if they’re not on the table when I go out for an Indian; Aloo Gobi, and Aloo Parantha.  Both potato dishes (Aloo Aloo!), Aloo Gobi is a vegetarian dish made from potato, cauliflower and Indian spices (my mother in-law makes great Aloo Gobi) and Aloo Parantha is basically a veggie flat bread stuffed with potato and fried in butter (yum).  They are my absolute faves – they’re such great comfort food, perfect for this time of year.  So why not combine the two and have the best of both worlds, eh? 😉

Aloo Gobi Parantha

Ingredients

  • 250g of Potatoes, chopped (I used one Maris Piper and one Sweet Potato)
  • 1 Echalion Shallot, finely chopped
  • 250g roughly chopped Cauliflower
  • 100g roughly chopped Green Chillis (the smaller, the spicier!)
  • 225g Atta Flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 100g Melted Butter
  • 125 ml Warm Water
  • 50g roughly chopped fresh Coriander
  • 1tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  1. First, make the dough: If you’ve got a bread maker then you’re good to go – pour in the water and oil first, followed by the flour and salt.  Run the “dough” program and then leave it to do the hard work! 😉
  2. Next make up the Aloo Gobi filling: boil the potatoes and cauliflower until soft, then pour out the water and mash.  Add the onion, green chillis, coriander and spices and stir together.
  3. Once the dough is ready, divide it into six equal balls.  Now the tricky bit; filling the parantha and then rolling it out without it spilling out the side, AND trying to keep it in a perfectly flat circle.  I’m RUBBISH at this part; I’m sure there’s a knack to rolling them out perfectly, but I’m still nowhere near figuring it out!  You’ve basically got to roll them out a little, plonk a spoonful of filling in the middle and then parcel it up and roll out the dough again until it’s flat and round.  Sounds easy, right?
  4. Heat up your frying pan with a little melted butter and cook the parantha on both sides, brushing with butter as you go.
  5. Serve hot with fresh yoghurt (I flavoured mine with a little turmeric) and tamarind sauce.

What’s your favourite Indian dish? 🙂

New Year, No Pressure

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A couple of days before the New Year a bunch of daffodils sprung up and bloomed in our front garden – which is weird, because traditionally daffs have got at least another month or so of underground snoozing to go before they’re expected.  But nope, these guys are up and ready to go.  You know, as if they’re raring to smash 2018.  I mean, if they were human they’d have quit smoking, organised their bullet journals and vowed to go vegan by now.

And it’s not just my eager daffs, during the first week of January there’s always that pressure to get up, get going and – like a crash test dummy on their first day of work – throw yourself at 80 miles an hour into a brand new year.  There’s that fresh page right in front of us and the chance to start over and reinvent which is exciting…

…But also TERRIFYING, and comes with a huge amount of pressure (if you’re a writer then you’ll know how terrifying empty pages are!).

I wish I could say that I had the same January Get up and Go attitude that my daffodils have, but the truth is that it takes me a bit longer than that.  For me, January has always been a massive struggle.  I used to dread the trudge back to school and the old routine after spending time with my family at Christmas, and I’m always falling foul of the January Blues.  It’s a dark, cold and miserable time of year; not exactly the easiest month to feel motivated to get up early and get crack-a-lacking on those goals, amiright?

For people like me, the expectation that I’ll wake up on the 1st of January bright eyed having switched into a new mindset overnight is completely unrealistic (…the truth is that I spent the first couple of hours of 2018 with my head down a toilet… but I digress…). And yet the pressure to do that is everywhere, so it’s easy to beat yourself up when you wake up in January and just want to groan and bury your head under the covers instead.

My January Self-Care Kit: Plenty of reading material, fresh flowers to brighten up the house on dull days, lots of candles and fairy lights, hot tea, sticky buns and lots of time spent with the beardo and Bungle ♡

I’m not saying that I’m not excited for 2018, believe me, I really am (2017 was one of my favourite years so far 🙂 ).  But I’m going to need some time to ease myself into it, and January seems like the perfect month for some self care and self reflection.  I’m going to hold off on the resolutions and goal setting until February at least, and spend the month quietly feeding myself instead.  Not with food exactly (although there are still two Chocolate Oranges in my kitchen cupboard that I’m very excited survived Christmas…), but with all the things that I’m going need to inspire that fresh mindset when Spring arrives.  I want to read, I want to write, eat good food, go exploring and then come home and cwtch up somewhere warm and cosy with a cup of tea.  Unlike those eager daffs, this girl needs just a little bit more time sleeping underground before she can be expected to bloom.

What’s in your January Self-Care Kit? 🙂