Category Archives: philosophy

Heat Wave

If you know me, you know that I hate hot weather. (Says the girl who is setting off to Morocco in a few weeks and is applying to work in Taiwan)

Yes, it’s true. I’ve said it. I hate summer.

Maybe a bit harsh, and perhaps I don’t hate all of it, but I really do dislike hot weather. Unless I’m swimming in a lake. Then I’m fine.

Just a couple of weeks ago we had this:

sun dappled hammocks

Everything was beautiful and shadows were cast of two friends in a park

see us?

There was even foreboding, ominous sky.

Such contrast of light and dark.

Regents Park gave us sunshine that shone through leafless trees

I love trees.

(HUGE trees?

In break from my poetic banter, I don’t know why that picture is so big. I’m no good with formatting….)

Birds aplenty.


what beautiful feathered feat

and some springtime babies! This is a blurry picture because I snapped it as the baby duckling was flapping its wings because it was just so darn cute! I hope you can sort of see…

Fly away!

Skies were blue and buildings were tall.

Okay, this one has always been tall.

I love Barbican.

Days were brisk, but perfect for fruit at Borough Market. Yes, I finally got around to taking some pictures!

I love strawberries. But they are one pricy fruit!

and veg, of course.

lovely greens.

and a…thanksgiving spread?

gobble gobble….I would.

But of course, we all know that I go to Borough Market for the samples.

This was mustard. All mustard.

My favourite condiment**? Mustard! They had wasabi and truffle and fig and just so many!!

**savoury. Nut butter is in its own category, obviously.

I’ve heard this is great. Haven’t gotten it yet though.

it was seriously cheeeeeeeesy

They’ve got so many great samples at Borough. Favourites include: Jams, rosemary flavoured olive oil, white balsamic reduction, CHEESE and the most wonderous mushroom pate. Seriously, I don’t know how they do it.

I will be missing the market lifestyle when I’m back in the states. Anyone know cities that have good sample opportunities markets?

Tomorrow I’m off to the Imperial War museum with a friend. I can’t wait!! Hopefully it isn’t quite so hot though, I’m going to ride the bus. No tubing for me in this weather, I’d imagine they are stifling.

Hannah x

Mellow Mondays


Why does everyone hate it so? I’ve never felt that drag of a feeling everyone describes as, ‘the mondays,’ but I can feel a bit of a general drag today.

Because my exams are now over, as of friday (yay!), I’m left with basically two free weeks until I’ve got Field Day

Music all day!

on 2nd June and then a couple more days until I go to Morocco!



So until June, I’m completely unoccupied.

Being a person given to Anxiety, I’ve made myself a giant list of things to do if I feel lonely, anxious or bored. One of those was to go to the Wellcome Collection today, after I returned my books to the library. But apparently someone is testing me, because nothing on my list if open on mondays!

Resigned to sit on my bed all day (kidding) I’ve been cleaning out and organising my internet bookmarks. Seriously? Do I really need five links to the same cauliflower pizza crust? Why on earth do I have that article from 5 years ago in my bookmarks folder named, ‘awesome youtube,’ and what on earth does the folder ‘banana’ contain (hint: it isn’t banana recipes).

I’ll share with you some of the fun links I found though, because it is as much fun for me to rediscover them as it was to find them the first time.

1. 43 Things – This website lets you set goals, see others who have the same goals as you, and cheer and be cheered. You can check off when you’ve accomplished something and write a little blurb about it.

2. Wedding Gawker– I’m assuming you’ve all seen Food Gawker (another favourite of mine) but if you haven’t found yourself its Wedding component, set aside some hours. For a girl who hasn’t even ever dated someone, I love to dream on this site.

3. Regretsy– You guys know Etsy, right? Well this site is like etsy, but the products have gone a bit….off. Where else can you find cinnabon earrings, foaming cake batter body wash, and top 5 bag overalls.

4. Sporcle- Sporcle gives you timed quizzes based on a given topic of your choice. My first year room mate was constantly on this site, and I’ve since developed a similar fondness, although cannot say to have spent nearly as much time quizzing as she had :) The quizzes are actually good for learning as well, such as countries in Africa or name the presidents.

5. The Oatmeal- I surprise myself sometimes with what I find and enjoy online. I wouldn’t peg myself as a webcomic reader, but this blog has some really hilarious things such as the one I’ve linked to where the author describes just what we mean when we say, ‘literally’ It’ll make you think thrice before you say it again, or at least laugh as you use it incorrectly!

So besides refinding joy in the internets, what have I been doing with myself? My friend S and I went to see Foster the People a couple weekends ago. It was a pretty good show- they even played the same song twice (we had a talk about whether this was by accident or not)

Bad lighting good friends.

I would have to say though, that my favourite part was the lighting. It was so dark and we were way up in the balcony (which is what you get with £15 tickets) but we could hear (everything but each other) and see the light show.



Brixton is lovely at dusk.

There was one point when bubbles came down from the ceiling, but we couldn’t get under them because we were on the balcony.

balloons or bubbles?

I’ve done the dark room-wet bubble/foam thing, if you remember, and it wasn’t fun.

**** Me, It’s Easter foam cannons were SUCH a night ruiner.


Beams of light

My friend D and I have walked around London some, Borough Market (DELICIOUS MUSHROOM PATE!) and Tate Modern (strange). We came across this and he had to take a picture with his fancy film camera in B&W.

I’ve always wanted one of these pictures.

Obviously, I wasn’t paying attention.

D and I also found an interesting nonconformist colouring book at a local bookshop. I will be getting this for my kids.

anti tradition

D got one of those super fancy swirly coffee drinks.

AND I got to see the barista do it!

I’ve been to Borough Market many times, and yet I never feel quite right about taking pictures while I’m there. I might go again later this week and see whether I can overcome this because if you want to see food beautifully presented, Borough is your place! So I took an awkwardly close picture of myself instead on my walk home?

All awkwardly photoshopped so that you can NOT see all my pores.

Oh, and those are ear phones, not supersonic bionic silver ears or giant earrings. And you thought I was starting a new trend.

I promise that once I get home and have access to some assemblance of schedule and more picture taking, I won’t do mostly photo/mind dump posts. I realise they can be difficult to follow.

But while we are on the topic of being random, I’ve got these ‘table talk’ cards from home that somehow made their way into my suitcase (I blame…..Mom encouraging me to be social?) The first question on it is, ‘If you could get a VIP pass into any special event, what would you attend? What would be the best way to celebrate it?’ My answer? Well, 3rd June is the Jubilee here, and I would love VIP tickets to get to spend the day with the Queen and get to know her and have fun together. I’d celebrate by eating eaton mess with her in a beautiful garden somewhere.

I’m off to work on my Fulbright and listen to Queen

Love, Hannah x

WIAW- Birthday/Thanksgiving/On Holiday Edition

So I’ve been absent lately. Noticeably or not, I haven’t been around.  Not since Thanksgiving have I really been up to blogging. I”m just not feeling college right now, and its kind of getting me down. But it’s probably this time of year. Raise your hand if you’re feeling a bit of a slump. Thought so.

Nothing like What I Ate Wednesday to bring your spirits up though. Jenn’s got something going on, as usual, and as always, I’m keen to join on in.

We begin with a 21st birthday parcel that’s been sitting under my bed for about a week.

Wonder what's inside!

I didn’t have to wonder long. After my flatmate wished me Happy Birthday at 12:01 am, and my parents not 1 minute after, I danced around my room a bit before deciding I’d better go to bed.


I opened it as soon as I got out of the shower. My family is the most amazing thing. My mom got me the cardigan that I have been imagining (that makes me feel like I’m in prep school) and sent me Justin’s Maple Almond Butter, which I’ve never tried. You bet I ripped it right open to try it.

My sister, G (who is ten) sent me a really cute card featuring my favourite animal; owls!

Answer: Happy Birthday to Yoooooo


Little pastas, lentils, spices, curry powder, shepherd's pie seasoning and mushroom bean soup mix!

I think my mom knows I like cooking :)

I've been admiring this spoon at Marshals!! and nommy tuna.

All the tuna I could find here has sunflower seed oil in it- greasy! blech.


I’ve never tried most Larabars, so this is a treat. I’m still banking on the seasonal clif barsthough.

I've been lusting after this too!

She also sent me my bag of peanut flour that I’ve been missing and a pop up turkey centrepiece, in honour of my birthday.

G and E made cookies!

Oatmeal raisin cookies are a staple at our house. By which I mean we make them occasionally. G and E, at ten, are really into cooking right now and they sent me these cookies they made. Let’s back up and I will tell you how I’m afraid of cookies and never eat them myself. I’ll post about that in the future, but mom knew what I’d say!

Only a bit stale....

I still don’t know how I feel about raisins though. They are so dreadfully sweet.

Birthday card from "the Queen" (my flatmte) and another plate card!

This little guy wanted to say hello.

and of course a 21st birthday wouldn’t be quite right without Birthday Pancakes!


Birthday Pancakes for one 21 year old
1/2 cup spelt flour
1/2 cup wheat bran
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 egg white
1/2 cup water
vanilla and sweetener, to taste
load on the sprinkles!

These hit the spot, I tell you.

Don't forget the sprrinkles!

Can we just talk about the deliciousness?

stacked high

and yes, I did run to the shops just to get sprinkles when I realized I didn’t have any. I needed flour that wasn’t white anyhow.

I am so short....

My friends came round and celebrated with me! Note the “Birthday Girl” badge. I was made to wear it out all day :)

Our thanksgiving spread, my plate is closest with the greenary

My other American flat mate wanted to do a “typical” American thanksgiving so, although my family doesn’t do it that way, I let him. This meant *gasp* sweet potato casserole, cornbread, boxed stuffing and all sorts of other things, all of which contained enough butter and sugar to last the rest of my life. I was polite and took some, because that’s what you do. I also made myself a baked pepper and had some lettuce because I felt a lack of veg.

For the weekend, I ventured off to Bath. It’s so beautiful there, and they’ve got a Christmas Market on. The last two times I’ve been have been in summer, so this was different.

overcast street

You can see the cold in the photographs, I think.

I stayed in a little B&B and for breakfast she cooked to order. I ordered grilled tomatoes and mushrooms and had a side of organic yogurt and fruits.

Farmer's Market!

I sampled my way through the entire morning (literally)

It was all I could do not to buy all of these

Do you see all the people around Bath Abbey?

Busy busy busy

I had to be careful what I bought because I only brought one bag!

I was surprised at myself though- I actually bought things! More on this in another post, but I’m petrified of spending money.

I wanted one of those stars

I don’t know if this is usually there. I don’t recall having seen it on previous trips.

I would have looked mad going on alone

I walked around most of the weekend, eating out of the grocery shops because it’s nice and cheap.

Beautiful river

Bath is really quite lovely.

I'd love to live here

I love how the old historic quality of the city has been preserved.

Street signs

and the Royal Crescent, of course.

I love roofs and sky, what can I say?

case in point.



Bath Abbey

I can’t possibly show you all the pictures (although I didn’t take as many as I thought I would) but these are just gems.

And who AM I to think I can leave town without a jar of nut butter?

See? Heavenly emergency PB

I had to rush into Sainsbury’s to replenish my empty stock. Silly me, never again will I leave without the stuff.

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and weekend. It’s almost time for me to go home for Christmas (read: 18 days) so I’m quite excited!!
I plan on trying to post more this week on some introspective stuff. Also about the cake I ate out of the blue yesterday when the family I Nanny for gave it to me. No big deal. Hannah:1 Ed:0

Love, Hannah



Oh, Bother!

Today I’d like to write up a little post about the things that bother me.

It’s getting towards crunch time, and I’m sure we students all have a bit of something or other that we’d like to let out to lessen our stress. Here goes.

1. When it is obvious that a comment is just there to leave a comment- that someone hasn’t actually read the content (I do write it for a reason, you know) or they’ve just looked a picture and said “oh yum!” When I read blogs, I read the entry, decide if there is something that resonates with me, and comment if there is. If I can’t leave a comment that is a couple sentences long with substance, I don’t leave one- they’d probably feel the same as I do. Plus, it’s nice to read comments from people who actually read your blog and care about what you’re going through, not just the pictures.

2. Walking behind people who are smoking or who are walking slowly- Hurry up!! and quit blowing that in my face, it’s not my choice to get lung cancer!! and yes, I will get a headache if you persist. Hurumph.

Enough said.

3. Writing papers that don’t really interest me- Do you ever feel like you’re wasting your life if you’re not truly doing what you love? Unless writing papers is the way to find out what you love? I don’t think so. I’ll write more at length about this I think.

4. Repetitive noises- Just don’t tap your pencil or jiggle your leg. Don’t do it!!

5. Mess- When our lovely cleaner comes in the morning and cleans our entire kitchen, my flatmates still still still leave piles of dirty dishes in the sink? I once put them all in the middle of the floor. They did nothing. They’re lucky I love to do dishes. I’m about to ask for payment.

Sometimes it looks like this. I kid you not.

This said: I’m sure I’m guilty of these things. I’m not hating on people, I’m just venting a bit? I’m positive that I annoy people daily. Maybe I walk too fast or I clean too much or something?

And I’m sure those things aren’t the only things that bother me. But since I went to see Karen Armstrong speak on sunday about Compassion, I thought I’d add a bit about what makes me relax.

1. Long Walks- I love being outside. It’s amazing how much my day improves if I walk outside and see sights and breathe the fresh air.

I finally got a picture of this November rose!

2. Music that fits my mood- There is nothing like listening to whatever helps me emote. Sometimes it’s loud, upbeat, or other times it’s soft, or anguished. Right now I’m listening to a playlist called “Mellow” and it’s some French guy I found on Spotify. I’m not sure this is because I actually feel mellow or because I want to. 

3. Changing it up- Sitting at your computer all day is no way to relax. I love days when I go to my job because not only is it away from my room, but it also isn’t the school environment. Get outside, do something else, talk to someone. It just exercises your brain and frees your eyes from strain.

4. Meditation- I think a lot about this and do little of it. I was much better last year while I was taking a course on it. I should really take it up again, it would make me feel a bunch better.

Just like this.

5. READING! One of the things I’m looking forward to over Christmas: parking myself with a book in front of the fireplace with tea. For hours. 


As you can probably tell, I’m pretty busy. Thursday/Thanksgiving is my birthday!! I’m going to Bath for the weekend, which will be fun. I booked a single room for myself right near the Crescent, so although I’ve already been to Bath twice, I’m looking forward to the Christmas Market!

I’ve been working on essays. I’ve got four this term, two of which I am done with. They’re due in January, but I don’t want essays over Christmas break- yuck!

I’ll hopefully be posting about my London whirlwind tour later this week, perhaps we a wordless post? I took loads of amazing pictures that I just might want to share!
and of course I’ll have some from Bath as well.

Love, Hannah

Get Real: Part Two

Let’s be honest.

This morning I’m really struggling with body image.  Like it does, it came on suddenly and without explanation. One minute you’re fine, “Oh, I love my legs today” and the next, “Gosh. What the heck. You shouldn’t have done X yesterday, now you’re too thick.”

Um ED? Do you mind? I run the show now.

*disclaimer: I’m not a debbie downer, I’m just exploring my feelings and processing. This is real, I’m real, and real people aren’t happy all the time.

It could have been the fact that I decided to wear leggings today.

Maybe I should try this

Reframe: Leggings are fine. They fit you and make you look strong and slim. There shouldn’t be any clothes you feel you can’t wear. Good for you for trying something new.

It could be that my friend is coming to visit this weekend and I’m nervous about having to eat in front of her.

I hope she isn't expecting this

Reframe: Okay. I know this one is hard, but you’ve got to think. One weekend won’t blow you up, you don’t have to eat pizza, and you eat anyways, so why would doing it in front of her matter? Breathe.

It could be that I’m trying to get too much done at once. Yes, I’m looking at you papers that are not due until January.

Okay, it's not THIS bad :)

Reframe: You’re extremely proactive, starting your papers months in advance. That way you can have  a relaxing time when you go home for Christmas. Although this week is “reading week” you do not need to finish all your essays now. You still have more than a month before you go home.

So it could be any of these things. Point is, what do you do about it? When you feel like all you want to do is crawl in a hole, or retreat back into behaviors, what do you do? It is made worse by dwelling on it, by realizing that old behaviors just don’t work for you anymore. You need to eat, you like to eat, and it’s when this is paired with bad body image that things get difficult.

Today I’d like to focus on what my body does for me. I read a quote this morning that really resonated with me in relation to this:

“The Greatest danger to our future is apathy” Jane Goodall”

Recovery is a process and a process doesn’t mean a fast track. Some days will be better than others and unfortunately, today is one of those others. It is when we forget what we’re aiming for that we are in danger. The days when I forget to eat enough of whatever, when I forget that I eat for my bones, for future relationships, for my family, for my education. It is when I forget that so much of what makes me unhappy now is caused by this disorder.

This is making me emotional.

When I really stop to think about this and actively push against the apathy, I become powerful and strong against this anorexia. I become the one who is in charge, the one who calls the shots on what I think tastes good and what I wear. The one who decides whether I have one piece of toast or two with yogurt for breakfast. The one who decides to love myself with all my imperfections. And in doing this, allow myself to be loved by others also.

The truth is, this is the hard part. The part where I am not so entrenched in my ED that I don’t care. I do care now. I see where I was, where I am, and where I am going, and I want to get there with all my heart. That’s where it is hard. Holding back would be safe, I’ve been there, done that and I know how and what it brings. But the future is brighter, albeit unknown. It involves friends, delicious food, opportunities, maybe my first boyfriend, who knows. It also involves a strong body that can see me through all of these wonderful things that the future holds.

It’s a lot to struggle with recovery when you’re on the brink. A lot to struggle while your maladaptive perfectionism is telling you to get your essays done months before they’re due, but at the same time, preventing you from productivity because you’re afraid you’ll fail.

Here is what I’m focusing on today, to help me battle this E(vil) D(emon)

1. Thinking about what my body can DO for me. It can walk me around London. I can walk to my job, be there for the two girls I Nanny for and get me back safely. I can meander around the city and see sights. I can run to catch a bus.

2. Thinking about something else. This morning I made peanut butter. Tastes good, good for me, makes me happy. Instant fix. Besides, what is NOT totally distracting about a loud food processor?

3. Thinking about my future and not sinking into apathy. Apathy is the same thing as fear and non-action in this circumstance. If I am afraid to recover or afraid of what it would meant to let go, I fail inherently. I expose myself to the dangers of brittle bones, relationship-less life and lost friendships. The more active I am in my thoughts, the more what I desire becomes a reality.

4. Thinking about these feelings. Where did they come from? What can I do? Ignoring feelings will only push them down and resurface them later. Buddhism speaks to the importance of letting feelings arise, acknowledging them, and letting them pass. I believe this this works, no matter how difficult it may be in the moment.

5. Reaching out. Reach out to those people who care about you. My parents are really great supports for me, as is blogging. I know that so many of you have and are going through what I am and can relate. Knowing you’re not alone is something that is spoken of again and again, but it is true. No shame in asking for help. The only shame is self generated. Change your thoughts.

6. Eating. Oh yes. Eating when you’ve got bad body image is probably the LAST thing you want to do but it can really help. Getting into a bad spiral can only bring you down. Chances are, missing nutrients are causing negative thoughts. Carbs, fats and protein are the ones I always miss, and it is true that I need a balance of those daily in order to feel great.

I hope this helps those of you who are struggling with body image today, recovering from an Eating Disorder or not. Sometimes we just don’t love our bodies. It’s okay. We don’t love the weather every day, but we put on our overcoats and brace the wind. We don’t love homework, but we slog through and get the “A” at the end. Life in general isn’t great all the time. But just living, if you think about it, is the most amazing thing. How complex we are as creatures. How much we matter as whole people. Believe me, your friends aren’t friends with you JUST because of a certain part of your body. That would be bogus. Legs don’t talk! Ideas, thoughts, emotions, those form people. What people DO. This is what makes you a person.

Give it a think. Love your body today. I am.

Love, Hannah

Get Real

Hi All.

I was talking to my mom via skype lately and, as usual, we got to talking about recovery and life.

We’re very philosophical, my mother and I.

I do lots of thinking about letting go and the limitations of my ED. Here are some of the things I’ve come across and I need to let go of.

1. I’m letting go of the fact that I’m never going to be tall with long legs.

I wouldn't want to be creepy like this :)

Reframe: My legs are strong and can power me through walking around London. If I didn’t have any muscles, I couldn’t see all the sites!

2. I’m letting go of the fact that I’m not the most social person out there. 


Reframe: It is completely not to enjoy clubbing so much, and I can go out sometimes too. It’s all about balance. I know that my body needs more sleep. I listen.

3. I’m letting go of the need to control every situation around food

Weighing my options

Reframe: I’m learning that food can be a social thing. Eating things others prepare, trying samples or eating because someone offers food to me will not automatically blow me up into a blimp.

4. I’m letting go of the past 

The past can shape me but it will not hold me back

Reframe: Yes, I’ve had social trouble, I haven’t been happy, I’ve had an eating disorder. But that does not have to be my future. I can live the vibrant life I dream about. Looking backwards with one hand holding on is never going to allow me to grow.

5. I’m letting go of being alone

Come find me!

Reframe: I may not have a best friend, and I may have never dated, but there are people out there who will make me feel special, just how I am. My mom says I’m looking for a very rare fish in a big pond. It may be true. I need to do my part to look for them, as they are hopefully looking for me too!

6. I’m letting go of restricting my entire lifestyle 

Money. Such a complex thing.

Reframe: Spending money doesn’t automatically make me a bad person or immediately destitute. I don’t need to restrict spending because I have money to eat, money with which to have fun. When I restrict my money, I become “unfun” and avoid situations. This is the most difficult, as I learn to spend without guilt.

I’m learning. Recovery is a process. I always like to say I’m getting my midlife crisis out of the way early.


Day two of reading week! I went to work yesterday, my first day as Nanny (remember the job that wasn’t going to work out? It did!!) The girls are lovely and the family is just amazing. Their flat looks out over London, which is just perfection in itself. I feel welcomed by their community and it is just a blessing. Isn’t it grand to love your job?

I definitely saw a guy walking down the street with one of these yesterday:

Stuck in the past?

I did a double take and laughed to myself.

I’ve been eating lots of this:

Read: It is now gone

and this 

Curry Spiced Hummus

I’ve been craving chocolate like no one’s business. I’ve been out for a couple days and haven’t been to the shops to get any. I have my eye on this bar:


I love dark chocolate. The stranger the flavour, the better. As long as it hasn’t got Hazelnuts or Pistachios, I’m golden.

I can’t wait until WIAW tomorrow- it’s going to be a good one!

Enjoy your snow. I’m jealous. Perhaps occasion to being out the Christmas music early? I always say never before my birthday (November 24th) but this year perhaps I’ll need to.
Love, Hannah

Soya Good Halloween

Hello Loves!!

If you’re American, like me, you’re probably thinking about what time of year it is right now.


Even though I’m abroad, I still tried to get into the Halloween mood today. Things don’t really take off in London like they do in the US. Whole Foods has a couple displays and the supermarkets have some halloween themed candy, but other than that, you don’t see houses bedecked in finery like these:

I'm glad that's not real!

Halloween lights!

If you guys know Martha Stewart at all, she gets really into the spirit of things (no pun intended) and decourates for parties which she highlights in her magazine

She's always got the best costumes around!

I can remember Halloween years past. A friend and I always used to dress up by the alphabet each year. We were Aliens, Babies, Cows, Dementors, Elves, Fairies, I think we lost it when we got to G.  Once I was “Little Dead Riding Hood”- ooh I thought myself to clever for coming up with that one.

When my Anorexia hit, Halloween ceased to be a fun activity, and began to be a night of horror and reclusion. I remember the first Halloween, I didn’t go out because a) I was too cold and b) I didn’t want to have any candy. So I can remember standing in my doorway, bundled up, handing candy to trick or treaters as they came by. It wasn’t a week after that that my parents pulled me out of school.

Flash forward and we’re on our way to recovery. A couple Halloweens ahead of that first one, I’m trick or treating with fellow classmates and I’m even allowing myself to eat a fun sized candy bar. My candy still lasted all year. I’d nibble it, never allowing myself to take a full bite of something that “might have too much sugar” or “contains trans fats!” or was “empty calories”

Look at it all!

And now I’m off in a foreign land with no trick or treating to be heard of. I might be too old anyways. But if I’m honest, I’m ready to enjoy the holiday again, even if it is by handing out candy (in costume, of course!) or taking my little sister and brother, G and E around. Heck, I might even indulge in a couple pieces of candy to keep my energy up.

Because I’m learning that there is nothing that I “shouldn’t” or “can’t” have- except for pistachios and hazelnuts, because I’m allergic to those-and that everything in moderation leads to a balanced outlook on food and how it fuels my body. One mini milky way won’t blow me up to a balloon size.

What is your view on Halloween? What is your favourite Halloween candy? If you’ve ever had an ED, how have your perspectives on the holiday changed? Should a holiday be centered so much on just candy?

So what am I to do, stuck in Brit-land, without access to the holiday I’m finally ready to embrace?

A couple weeks ago, Alpro was kind enough to send me some of their products to enjoy and review for you all.

If you know me, you’ll know that I LOVE ALPRO products. Last summer when I was at Oxford, I would buy the pots of plain and eat the entire thing, it was so good and creamy. Although Alpro couldn’t send me refrigerated products, like their soy milk (which I’ve yet to try!) and their delicious yogurt, they were able to send me some of their yummy puddings, as well as a single creamer and a soya custard.

A bit about Alpro and soya: Did you know that:

Several hundreds of varieties of soya plant exist, the most common being the one that provides yellow soya beans, which is the variety that they use in their products.
-These take between 150 and 200 days to develop in hot and humid climates. The plant itself reaches about 80 centimetres in height, growing small white or purple flowers that create pods that yield between 1 and 4 beans.
-These beans are one of the best plant sources of protein and we use the goodness of the whole soya bean to make their products to ensure that all of the nutrients are retained. source

That’s lots of effort that goes into making these products!


-can naturally lower cholesterol (not that I’m worried about this)
– is high in protein (I do look for this!)
-is good for the planet (always a plus!)
-is dairy free (if you’re keen on that)

So what hasn’t this stuff got going for it? I hopped right on the bandwagon.


I haven’t actually tried this yet because our mini fridges-shared among seven people don’t quite fit everything. But when I do, I’ll be sure to share!!

I'm thinking tasty over baked goods?

Same goes for this, but you’ll see I have plans as soon as space frees up in the fridge.

Creamy goodness

These taste like heaven. They’re low fat, and they contain calcium, and they’re not too sweet? A+ Alpro. I dove right into these. I’ve had them as a dipper for squash fries, Kabocha breakfast, steamed carrots, a topper for oats, and just for eating. Yes my friends, these things are good. If you have been searching for a creamy, dreamy dessert that doesn’t taste like they’ve dumped in sugar or artificial sugars, you’ve found your winner.

Which leads me to today’s recipe and wonder creation.

That’s what I’m talkin’ about

I waited to try these last and knew my plan for them. Emma always has pudding oats, and I knew my time had come to try them with caramel soya pudding. I’ve tried with chocolate, which turned out wonderfully, but if you know me, I’m more of a caramel person. mm

Caramel Apple Oats

-Oats, whatever serving you wish to have
-water or (non dairy) milk, if you prefer
– 1 Alpro Caramel Soya pudding
-Fresh stewed apples- I stewed mine on the hob, but you can also use sliced apples or applesauce

-combine and cook as you would regular oats. I topped mine with the apples and stirred the pudding in, but that can be up to you as well.  Oh, and don’t forget the cinnamon!

A sweet treat in honour of the Caramel Apples of the fall season.  

Enjoy, and happy Halloween, if you “celebrate”.

Don’t feel guilty about having a handful of candy corn or enjoying that chocolate bar. No shame, remember that okay? It tastes good, bottom line.

Love, Hannah

WIAW-English Countryside Camping Edition

Or “How I made my Debut as a Hobo”

Hello, and welcome to my blog. I like to wrap up my whole bed weekends and moonlight as a hobo.

Not really, I just like to go camping and being abroad, have nothing but my entire duvet to keep me warm.

PAUSE–> it is WIAW. It wasn’t wednesday when I ate this. But in all honesty, when is it ever really wednesday whenever we publish? It isn’t. So Jenn should still get credit for putting this all together and letting us feast our eyes on meals and doings from around the world.

The day began with a hearty breakfast. I decided to try my strawberry Gotein in my oats and use some toppings. Let me just say that it turned out super thick and delicious looking but the protein powder was a bit strong for my taste. I liked the powder in the shake, but perhaps not in oats? I think I’ll stick to pudding for now.

Pink GoTein oats with cinnamon, chocolate, banana chip and coconut toppings.

Try as I might, I’m just a huge fan of plain oats.

So kill me.

Off I went to the steps of SOAS to meet the other hitchers. No one was there.

Dismayed both at the lack of fellow travelers and the fact that I’d schlepped my entire bedding across London in a plastic bad (hence the newly found hobo status), I dragged it all the way home again, pulling off my boots, all 5 of my layers and dropping into bed.

I closed my curtains, put on some classical music on Spotify (if you haven’t discovered this, do, I’ll wait) and attempted a nap.

(did I mention it was all of 1130am?)

Phone goes off. It’s fellow traveler, ringing me to come along when they meet at 1pm. I decide “oh whatever, I’ll just go” and off I set.

This is my reward

Can you see why I’m glad I went?

Something Moor....I'm really good with names ;)

If you look way up, you can see the Flat Moor (I forget the name) where ponies run wild. Romantic much?

Rolling hills- wild pheasants present as well!

Since we arrived in the dark, after hitch hiking (which is fine, so don’t worry- try it, you might be surprised) I didn’t get to see these sites until the morning.

Another tree- with a hiding place!


Are you tired of nature photos yet? Try being there in person. I can’t believe I was only 6 hours (hitched) from London!

Beauty abounds

I had thought I’d have to stay outside and freeze but someone had brought a bell tent!

In case you didn't know. My mom didn't.

We sat around the fire on tires and cooked a veg stew with couscous and lentils. It was really the most deliciously rustic thing. It made me want to sell everything and move to a field, cooking everything over an open fire.

Too bad you just fall in.

Some really cool art was present as well. I only wish we’d made this.

The next morning (this is saturday, if you’re following) consisted of many apples straight from the trees!

Aren't they cute?

And so many apples cut up and pressed into Cider.

Before pressing

During pressing

pressing and juicing

We took a break from pressing to take a walk and go foraging and seek out a Haunted Castle!

Beech Nut

Beech nuts are really good and make a delicious snack.

From far away in the valley

Can you believe we could walk to it? Couldn’t go inside though, since it cost a fiver. (that’s five pounds, for you non british folk)


sky + castle = perfect

Looks peaceful, but apparently they used to hang dead bodies from the towers. Think again.

Honeycomb Ice cream

I tried a bite of my friends honeycomb ice cream. Pretty good indeed. I just loved the bowl. She looked at me funny when I asked to take a picture of it :)

We made dinner…lunch….when we got back. The two kind of morphed into one because it was already 4pm.

over open flame? yum!

This is the only terrible picture I got of our stew making that night.

rest assured, it tasted good

We also roasted chestnuts and sweet potatoes in the fire. Talk about a delicious meal.


I realize this was a picture heavy post, but I just cannot convey to you how relaxing and beautiful it was out there. I didn’t shower for two days, I ate in front of other people, food that I didn’t control made with *gasp* butter, I ate bread and not at certain times, I laughed, snacked, didn’t care what I looked like.

No wonder people say going to the countryside makes everything better.

Love, Hannah


PS Check out my guestpost!!

Living the Busy Life

Wow guys. I’ve been so busy. I’m sure you all can tell I got home from my Hitchhiking holiday in one piece- more on that tomorrow!

I’ve volunteered to take these surveys for London Business School every so often so I find myself in Regents Park many days. It’s lovely there, if you’ve never been. Put it on your list!

What have I been up to? Well an embarassingly long time ago I met Carrie at the Royal Parks Half marathon.

It was busy there!

I walked around and tried to find her, to no success. Finally I found myself a spot next to the start of the race and peeled my eyes looking, thinking it would be just my luck for her to be on the opposite side from where I stood.

See her?

Imagine my surprise when I was shaken from my concentration by “….Hannah?” It was Carrie standing right next to me!

There she is!

I can’t believe she was right there. It was really great to meet up with her, however briefly. We actually ended up meeting up a week later at Whole Foods for a quick shop. What a sweet girl. But our time to talk was limited because off she ran!

These old suckers

I almost got my gait analyzed but the line was too long. These old shoes have been around for a while! I was going to go on a Market crawl but the people who were organizing it didn’t show up.

Oh, Hello London!

I tubed it home.

Check out this escalator

I also mentioned that I went to a Vintage Fair.

Pretty shoddy picture of cupcakes

The lighting was pretty bad, but I tried to take a couple pictures.

It looked like this all around the room

I decided to take the plunge and promise myself that I wouldn’t leave unless I’d purchased something. If you’re new to the blog, I’m petrified to spend money. This is something I plan to post about in the future, because it has a lot to do with my recovery as well as just life in general.

Anyhow, I bought a classic blue wool dress, perfect for whatever I end up doing with my life, as well as London chill. I can’t get a picture with it on, because I haven’t got a mirror and full body self pictures are difficult, but I’ll try to get one without me in it.


I’ve just been exploring, really.

All clean!

Learning how to purify water at the Community Garden.

It's growing!

Wandering around London’s gardens.

A wise sage for me?

Looking up at the trees. I love tall trees. I miss these when I’m at home, because I live in a fairly new development that is only as old as I am (points if you know how much that is!)  

So it’s fall again, and I’m changing some things. I’ve come so far in my recovery and every day I feel the ED grip slip looser and looser from around my mind. I’m becoming me again, which is an altogether frightening and wonderful feeling. Rediscovering life is so fresh, every day I am faced with new realizations and challenges. If you’ve been down the dark road of Anorexia, you know it’s a slippery slope. Now that I’ve poked my nose into the sunlight, I don’t ever want to go back down there. It’s hard, of course, but the things I’m learning and experiencing now make everything more than worth it.

Therefore, I am thinking of changing my blog up a bit. I love taking food pictures and posting about what I eat, and I’ll continue to do this as I enjoy food more and more. However, there is a lot going on in my mind more than food now. I’m thinking about my future, my past, philosophy, the world, anything really. I want to share some of this with you. Insights I have, tips I’ve found helpful, musings, questions. Let me know what you’d like to see.

Love, Hannah

I’m thinking of doing a Q&A post, if you guys would like to send me some questions!! You can email me, formspring me or tweet me or comment below. 




Passing the Bar

I’m going to talk a little about something I like to call the bar collection today.

I’m sure many of you know that I love bars. I’m sure many of you know that I’m quite afraid of them as well.

What’s to be afraid of? Love on the carbs, protein and fat, not to mention healthy calories to fuel everything I do? So honestly, what’s to fear? Well, it turns out that it’s just those things that I’ve feared.

Until now.

Yes, my friends, operation lets-eat-bars has begun. I’ve dug my way through a couple and they’re going to be making their way into my daily routine more and more. Because let’s face it, who doesn’t love a good snack or protein bar? Luna? Clif? Lara? Love them all. I’m more than psyched to try all the UK has to offer as well!

Where do we begin? We begin with the small stash I brought with me from the US. We begin with the Clif Z Bars.

I had a couple flavours lying around, but with me to London I brought the Smores flavour, the Apple Cinnamon flavour and the Chocolate Brownie flavour.  These delicious, cakey bars also come in Blueberry, Honey Graham, Full Moon Brownie (seasonal!) and Peanut Butter. I’ll be getting those next to try, thank you very much!

**I have no pictures of my own because I’ve been eating them on the go, but I’m sure they pretty much all look the same, am I right?

I began with the S’mores flavour. I’m such a fan of the S’mores Luna bar, that I figured this one would be as much of a winner. Clearly I was right because it had the flavour of S’mores built right in around the visable oats and little chocolate chunks. Made with 10g whole grains, I was really quite pleased at the quality of nutrition in these. Drizzled with a nice white chocolate glaze that isn’t too sweet, I quite liked it.

I'd give this 8/10

Next, I tried the Chocolate Brownie. I’m not usually a fan of things that are chocolate flavoured, preferring it in it’s natural bar form, but this one wasn’t bad. 

I'll give this a 6.5/10

If you’re really into brownies and fancy a healthy one, this one is for you. It also is like a cakey cookie bar, which is always a plus. I only give it 6.5 stars because I’m not the hugest chocolate flavoured fan. It had a nice glaze as well, that wasn’t overpowering.

I tried the Apple Cinnamonbar. This one was my favourite out of the three I tried.

This one gets a 9/10!

I quite liked this one. You could taste both the apple and the cinnamon, which was really a plus. Again, it had the nice glaze on top, but it really did not cover up the actual flavour at all, which I consider to be a huge plus. This one reminded me of a nice apple cinnamon muffin, and would probably be lovely warmed up. Loving the cakeyness of these.

Overall, I love these bars!! They’ve all got a really nice texture and some protein and carbs to snack on. I liked also that they feature 20% DV of calcium, which can help you along as well. Well done Cliff Bar! 

Being a really big fan of the Cliff Bar company, I don’t think they’ve ever put out anything I didn’t like. There are loads of flavours I haven’t tried yet, but I don’t know if I can get them in London. I’ll have to wait until I can get them at home, I suppose. More to look forward to!

Phase one of lets eat bars challenge: complete. Let’s go eat some more!!

Love, Hannah

Ps: I want to do a Q&A post, so ask me in comments, email me, or Formspring me whatever you’d like to know! If I get enough interest, I may put that up later this week :)

PPs: Check out my guest post on Love at Kaile’s Thoughts! 


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