July 30, 2012

Manic Monday: Samsara



SAMSARA is a Sanskrit word that means “the ever turning wheel of life” and is the point of departure for the filmmakers as they search for the elusive current of interconnection that runs through our lives.  Filmed over a period of almost 5 years and in 25 countries, SAMSARA transports us to sacred grounds, disaster zones, industrial sites, and natural wonders.  By dispensing with dialogue and descriptive text, SAMSARA subverts our expectations of a traditional documentary, instead encouraging our own inner interpretations inspired by images and music that infuses the ancient with the modern. 
SAMSARA explores the wonders of our world from the mundane to the miraculous, looking into the unfathomable reaches of man’s spirituality and the human experience.  Neither a traditional documentary nor a travelogue, SAMSARA takes the form of a nonverbal, guided meditation.  Through powerful images, the film illuminates the links between humanity and the rest of nature, showing how our life cycle mirrors the rhythm of the planet.

I can't wait to see this film but it doesn't look like it will be released in Amsterdam for a while unfortunately. It opens in the U.S. on August 24th in a few cities and then has a larger release on September 7th so check release dates.


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July 26, 2012

London lovins


By the time you read this post I'll hugging the crap out of one of my bezzies in the Big Smoke. Amanda's visiting Europe with her boyfriend and I couldn't bare the thought of missing out on the excitement. A handful of my close friends in one place + wonderful weather + crazy Olympic atmosphere = pretty darn good excuse to book a last minute trip!

Plans so far include watching the opening ceremony on a big screen in Hyde Park, picnic'in, lapping up the sunshine & wandering around tourist style (I can visit certain museums & galleries a million times and still get excited!)
So I'll be offline until next week as we catch up and enjoy the city.
Lots of London lovin'
Xxxx

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July 25, 2012

Christmas in July - PRESENTS!


Daryl from Roots, Wings & Other Things was my Secret Santa for the Christmas in July gift exchange! Daryl and I have more than a few things in common and I love reading her blog. She hit the nail on the head with my gifts and I was really touched with my presents. Included in my big box were a packet of chocolate "Mozart Balls" - unique to Salzburg and super yummy! This cute and quirky mug includes a little painting of the famous Schloss Neuschwanstein castle that inspired Walt Disney in the Bavarian Alps. I can't wait to drink some warm glu wine from it in the winter! Last but not least, Daryl remembered that I collect postcards and picked up two on her travels; a really cute touch to a lovely Christmas package!
Thanks a lot for my gifts Daryl :)


Count on my internet to go bust this week of all weeks when I had two blog swaps lined up! Please excuse any formatting issues with this post {Or any in the coming days} as I'm posting from my phone for the first time and it's quite tricky.
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Blog Swap: Favourite Family Holiday!

Hey Ginger Flair readers :)

I’m teaming up with Kassie today over from Skip to Malou* for my very first blog swap thanks to20 Something Bloggers and our challenge was to talk about our favourite family vacation.

I come from Barbados, a really teeny tiny island in the Caribbean which is known for its tropical weather and beautiful beaches. But there is a place that’s even more idyllic, so untouched and picture perfect that many people say it’s heaven on earth. St.Vincent and the Grenadines are a small set of islands southeast of Barbados and people from near and far sail and fly to these little gems to get away from it all. I’m lucky enough to have been here a couple of times on holiday and a family vacation spent on a sailboat in the Grenadines remains one of my favourite holidays. I especially miss it now that I'm studying in Amsterdam and the closest I'll get is sailing along the canals!

You wake up at the crack of dawn as the sun peeks through your porthole (Sometimes we snuck upstairs and slept on deck) and immediately jump in the crystal clear water.
Days are spent snorkeling, building sand castles, sailing between the islands and soaking up every minute that you can in the water.



Christmas and Easter are the busy periods because of the cool temperatures and steady winds, so the tiny harbours are usually full of boats from all over the world; Germans, Australians, Barbadians and Canadians are all brought together by a passion for sailing.


Locals zip in between the docked boats selling ice and fresh fruit from the islands or offering to do laundry. They’ll also sell vital supplies like Oreo cookies & canned sausages.

If you’re lucky you can still find a bottled coke in one of the local restaurants {Have you ever had glass bottle coke? If not, you’re missing out} and drink that with your lobster or conch pizza.


This all sounds pretty basic but as a kid there’s nothing better than spending a day on a boat, fishing off of the back and hoping you don’t catch something that’s just been dumped from another boat nearby {ewww} You can also spot whales {at certain times of the year}, dolphins, sea turtles and a bazillion kind of fish.

We ate fresh fish for breakfast, lunch and dinner thanks to my Dad & brother’s mad fishing skills; marlin, dolphin, barracuda, lobster…I never thought I could get sick of lobster but it’s possible! This is a more recent shot of them zipping around on the dinghy:

By the end of the day you’re feeling sun kissed and exhausted, with the smell of sunblock on everything you own. And even though you’re sick of sharing a cabin with your snoring siblings and miss having a warm shower, you wouldn’t trade that taste of salt on your skin for anything…


For more on an island girl living in Amsterdam, follow me on Skip to Malou* | Facebook | Twitter
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Window to the World: Oman

The view form the car window as Dad and I make a trip across the Wahiba desert in Oman - Ema McIntyre, 2012

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July 24, 2012

BlogSwap: Favourite Family Holiday

Hello Skip to Malou* fans! Today, with the help of 20 Something Bloggers, Malou and I have traded blogs to talk about our fave childhood vacations! 
 You can read all about hers over on Ginger Flair today!

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pretty sure my mom said that’s a big mushroom!
As a child my family pretty much took vacations every summer, generally to visit distant family around the US - Colorado and New Mexico, Chicago Suburbs and West Virginia. We also often frequented Minnesota (fishing family here!) and once I went on a trip with my grandparents to the Carolina’s and the Outer Banks - it was my first time seeing the ocean and I was in awe!


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My mother and I! The ladies of my fam have the fishing bone too!
Regardless of the beautiful ocean and lovely temps, my favorite “vacations” were up at a campground in Bellevue, Iowa. As a child we went there to camp quite often - several times each summer. We even used to have this brown camper, ha, I loved it! If you’ve never been up to northeast Iowa, let me tell you it’s pretty. I actually grew up in a river town a few hours south of Bellevue and it’s crazy how different it all looks. The river is gorgeous in both places, but Bellevue is all bluffs! The town itself it small and quaint. The main street is atop a bluff that overlooks the mighty Miss and it’s lined with cute shops. Even to this day, whenever I’m near Bellevue, I always stop to get some fudge! I’m doubt it’s actually anything special, but it’s nostalgic for me.

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my dad and I


We spent most of our time out at the campground - fishing, swimming and boating. As I mentioned, I come from an outdoorsy family and they like to fish. So, we’ve always had boats and I’ve always had the pleasure of enjoying a boat ride! Let me be clear, a boat ride on a lake and a boat ride on the river are two very different experiences (at least the lakes I’ve been on). Sure you can open it up and go fast for a few minutes on a lake, but eventually it has to end. On a river there are long stretches and the Mississippi has such a wide channel that there’s plenty of room for everyone. I always felt so calm and relaxed on boat rides, except at night with the bugs smacking into your face! Haha! Some of you reading this are probably completely grossed out that I would go in the Miss at all, people think it’s so dirty. Maybe it is, but honestly I feel like it’s just part of me, so I never give it a second thought. In fact, one time the showers weren’t working or something, so I actually bathed (read: washed my hair) in the river...and it was about 60 degrees out! BRRRRRR!

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Grandpa & I
After boating, I think bonfires are my next favorite thing about camping. How wonderful it is to just sit around a fire with your loved ones, telling stories, eating s’more’s (mmmmm) and just enjoying the evening. It really is the perfect way to end a long day. Dontcha think?

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always in style! ha!

xo, kass


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Make sure to check out Kassie on Twitter {@kassie_nichole}and read her awesome post on Taboo Topics.
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July 23, 2012

Manic Monday: {Epic} Failed attempts at Cockney Slang

Ever tried your hand at cockney slang?
Cockney Rhyming Slang originates from East London and was used by local gangs as a 'secret  language' of sorts to confuse the police: if someone was seen on the stairs, they said "apples and pears."
Rhyming Slang phrases are derived from taking an expression which rhymes with a word and then using that expression instead of the word. For example the word "nightmare" rhymes with "Tony Blair". In many cases the rhyming word is omitted - so you won't find too many Londoners having a "Tony Blair" but you might find a few having a "Tony's". There's a long list of cockney slang used more commonly:

Dog & bone - Phone
Barnet Fair - Hair
Pork Pies - Lies

This basic understanding of cockney is crucial to appreciating these videos; your average Englishman would barely get the gist of Cockney Slang when used in everyday language, far less Americans who have obviously never heard of it. I commend Team USA on this marketing ploy; it makes their athletes seem much more fun,human and likable, even if their attempts at a British accent are dreadful.

Worth a look and a giggle or two:

Can you guess what {Chicken Oriental} {John Cleese} & {Rosie Lee} are?







XXX
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July 21, 2012

Fitness meets Fashion

I may be a bit late on this Olympic shoot by Annie Leibovitz in the June issue of US Vogue but I really like the 'Behind the scenes' video that came along with it. How cool is that technique used for the 'swimming' shot of Ryan Lochte? (He also made fashion history as the fourth man to ever grace the cover of US Vogue - shocker!)

   

XXX
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July 20, 2012

Eat myself skinny

On the long dark days of dietdom, when I want to eat everything in sight purely because its 'not allowed', I turn to Pinterest for yummy, healthy recipes. Here are a few I've tried over the last few weeks; I didnt bother to take my own photos because a.) I was too hungry to stop for a photo and b.) these looked pretty damn good & my photo wouldn't have done my meal justice. They were delishhh!

Lemon Quinoa Avocado Cilantro Chickpea Salad{via}
Marinated mozzarella
Grilled Zucchini & Summer squash with yoghurt cumin sauce{via}
Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with roast tomatoes & goats cheese{Via}
Zuchinni Ribbon Salad{Via}
Black Bean & Avocado Lettuce Wrap{Via}
Honey yogurt berry pops made from Greek yogurt, honey and mixed berries
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July 17, 2012

Can't waitttt for Carnival Part 2!


Here's Part 2 of my blog post build up to Notting Hill Carnival at the end of August. I can't believe I left all of this off of the blog last year! I think I was too busy settling into postgrad life to blog about it.

This whole carnival concept seems pretty strange to anyone who's never heard of it or experienced it. Notting Hill Carnival is held each August Bank Holiday in London and was started in 1966 by the local West Indian community. When I first partook in Nottinghill in 2010 we were worried about being 'underdressed' for the underground and public transport but soon realised that nobody bats an eyelid at the girls wearing beads and feathers on the tube, they know what's going on. 
The parade starts early in the morning and we were not exactly the peachiest of revellers when we were getting ready. Needless to say, lots of glitter and fake tan later, we were ready to go :) 
What followed was a full day of non-stop debauchery, everyone dancing and going completely wild! 



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