Edinburgh photo diary

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Hello there! I’m blogging from the beautiful historic city Edinburgh. As I already told, I’m going to be a delegate at the Model United Nations (MUN) which is held at the University of Edinburgh. Tomorrow is the official start of MUN, that’s why we had enough free time today to enjoy the city, eat at traditional scottisch places and for some sight seeing. Here’s the photo diary of my amazing first day in Edinburgh:

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View from the plane, it looks so unreal!

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The MUN girls at Calton Hill, where you have an amazing view! We’re actually with a really small group of 7, but they’re all so nice and it’s a lot of fun hanging around with the group!

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A traditional tea party, which was very delicious as you can see – especially the caramel shortbread.

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And I made some time for make-up shopping, I purchased some very nice products from MUA and Sleek: a highlighter, blush, mascara, two lipsticks and an eyeshadow stick.

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Me and the girls standing at ‘Edinburgh’s disgrace’. It’s called a disgrace, because it was supposed to be the national monument, but they didn’t finish building it. I don’t think it’s a disgrace, it’s breathtaking!

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Enjoying delicious chicken nachos at the University’s Library Bar. A very nice and cosy place to hang out and grab a bite or drink.

The first day in Edinburgh was a great success. Tomorrow is big and busy day, MUN begins officially and after that we’re going to eat and spend the rest of the night at the Balmoral hotel. (just google it, you’ll be flabbergasted)

Already fan of Edinburgh :)?

10 reasons to love summer

It’s February and I’m already looking forward to my favorite season: summer! Here are the 10 reasons why I love this time of the year.

1. Wonderful beach days: swimming, tanning, eating enjoying your view and the warmth of the sun on your skin while reading a good book and/or listening to your favorite songs.

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2. Salads taste a lot better when it’s summer. In the winter I really don’t feel like eating salads a lot, but in the summer I would like to eat salad almost every day. Like this salad with veggies and beef, jummy!
Image3. Picknicks and barbecues in the park. So cosy and so much fun!foto (17)

4. Campfires

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4. Plumping down at a cafe terrace with a cold ice tea and some snacks. I could sit all day at a cafe terrace, while talking, drinking, snacking and watching people walk by. Good life!

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5. Fresh fruits and vegetables. The summer season is the best season for greens. Strawberries, mangos, raspberries, pineapples, (water)melon and other tropical fruits, I already look forward to eating them every day and make some healthy smoothies!

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6. Tanning. I always look a little pale in the winter, sun always gives my skin a rosy cheeked look and a healthy glow.

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7. Outdoor exercises, for example going for a run. In the summer I often go for a run after a long beach day and then take a very long shower. After that, I really feel reborn!

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8. Traveling and vacations. I went to Turkey (Alanya) with my bf last summer. We had a great time and the beaches were beautiful! Image9. Cheerful people. People are more happy and cheerful during when it’s sunny. Summer, hot sun, slow, quiet afternoons, and vacations. What more does a human being need to be happy?

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10. Watching beautiful sunrises and sunsets. This sunset picture was made during our trip to Ohrid, Macedonia.
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Already excited for summer?

Persian passion

There ain’t no better moment than today to show my love for Persian food. And as you all know, I’m a real foodie! Next to spending the day with my love, I also enjoyed my favorite (Persian) dish, made by my mom. She’s the best cook and she has some serious masterchef skills. That’s why I wanted to post something about the Persian kitchen and culture, two things that I grew up with.

ImageCharacteristic for the Persian kitchen is rice, almost every dish is served with rice. The big quantity of the food is also very typical for Iranians. In our culture eating is not only seen as a primary necessity of life, but also as a social occasion. Hospitality is a great part of the culture. When for example ten Persian people come together to eat, there’s always food for twenty. It occurs frequently that other families, people or neighbours join spontaniously, so there has to be enough food. Better be safe than sorry!

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It’s really the opposite of the Dutch culture. When Dutch people make food, they make exactly enough for the number of people. It’s not costumary that other people join dinner. Honestly, Dutch people lack a lot of hospitality in comparison with Persian people. When I was in primary school, I experienced the weirdest and oddest thing ever. I was invited to eat at one of my classmates, when the mother of my classmate seriously weighed the meat, it had to be exactly 80 grams, not 1 gram more. I had never seen something like that, I was really flabbergasted!

It’s time to introduce you to two of my favorite Persian dishes:

ImageKoobideh is a minced meat kebab, the name koobideh refers to the style that the meat is prepared: originally meat was placed on a flat stone (precisely a black flat stone) and was smashed by wooden mallet. It’s really delicous and served with a mix of white rice and saffron rice and a barbecued tomato.

ImageThe second one is called ‘tahchin’. It’s a rice cake that includes rice, chicken fillets, yogurt, saffron and egg. My mom made this dish today because she knows that it’s my favorite, so sweet! Coming home to my parents is always being wined and dined. I’m really blessed.

ImageLast but not least, make some place for (a lot of) dessert, jummy!

Now you know something about the Persian culture and food. I’m also very curious about your costums, so, where are you from and what’s typical for your culture and/or kitchen?

Accessoire party

Accessoires, what girl doesn’t love them? Bags, earrings, sunglasses, watches, (statement) necklaces and rings. They all give every outfit a finishing touch and my guess is that every girl propably wears at least one accessoire. There are so many great combinations possible with accessoires, I’ll show you some of my favorites!

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These earrings really make a statement and show some great attitude, really love them! I found similair ones on Lionette.

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Beanies, one of my all time favorites! My saviour in times of cold weather and next to that, they look fashionable too! I love the white/beige one, I have a similair one that I bought at Monki, but I couldn’t find it, so I’ve hunted one down at Asos.com.

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Wearing rings is always a good idea, they give your look that something extra! Especially the combination of regular rings, with midi and pinky ones, as you can see on the picture. The rings on the second picture are from Topshop. (Too bad there is no Topshop in the Netherlands)

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5875001050_1_1_1Round glasses, it’s beginning to become a real hype! I’ve already seen a lot of bloggers wearing them and I begin to love them more and more, so maybe it’s time to get one pair of my one. These glasses with a metal spectacle frame are from Zara.

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I’m really happy that leopard is making a comeback! I love leopard, but it has to be subtle in a way that it’s not dominating your outfit. Too much leopard can look a little ‘trashy’ if you know what I mean. I love this leopard clutch in combination with the soft colours, it’s really elegant! I found this one on Asos from Jas M.B. 

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Last but not least, transparent clutches, you have to love them! I wouldn’t use this clutch as a every day asseccoire, but I think it’s really cool for a special occasion, like a party or a dinner. Also, I always have a lot of stuff with me, so I think it wouldn’t fit in such a small bag, but I like the idea! The clutch on the second picture is from Zara.

These accessoires are all so awesome one by one and I would totally rock them. However, there are some every day accessoires that I can’t miss, like a tote bag for all my stuff, my Michael Kors watch and golden plated heart shaped necklace I got from my grandmother.

What are yours? 🙂

Valentine fine

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Valentine’s day, it’s origin dates back to 270 AD, where a young roman priest called Valentinus –  also known as Saint Valentine –  broke the law of Claudius the emperor and followed the law of love. In his time, it was illicit to marry soldiers, because Claudius didn’t want the soldiers to be distracted by their home front. But Valentine broke his law and married soldiers in secret. Unfortunately, the secret didn’t last long. Claudius gave the order to torture Valentine and eventually Valentine was decapitated on the 14th of February.

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Nowadays, people give their loved ones special attention on this day. Although I love to spend this day with my loved ones, there are 364 other days were you can show your loved ones that you love them, it’s more spontaneous and I think the suprise element makes it more fun. Still, I love the gesture and it’s a great occasion to give someone some extra attention. That’s why I’ve hunted some Valentine items down!

ImageThis classy dress from Zara is perfect for a Valentine’s date. With some high heels, a clutch and statement jewelry you’ll be totally ready to rock the night!

Valentine’s day is not only for love couples, but also a great moment to show your love to your friends, family and even to your pets. Everybody drinks tea of coffee, so I think your friends and family will be very happy with a nice and/or funny mug! Every time they enjoy their daily cup of tea or coffee they will think of you. Here’s some mugspiration (personal customized mugs are even more awesome):

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And I found the sweetest thing to show some Valentine love to your pet. This hand knitted red hearted scarf from Etsy is so cute, cheerful and will keep your cat or dog warm these cold winter days.

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Whether you’re going to celebrate it or not, it’s never a bad time to make cupcakes. These red velvet cupcakes are delicious and look ‘Valentinish’. A great excuse to pamper yourself or your loved ones while watching a good movie. Tip: please don’t watch Blue Valentine, although Valentine is in the movie name, it’s a very depressing, non valentine movie (and yes, even when Ryan Gosling is the main character), so watch a feelgood movie like ‘Ride Along’, ‘Valentine’s day’ or ‘Due Date’ instead.

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I hope you all have a great Valentine and that you’ll not only receive love on the 14th of February but also the rest of the year! Lots of love from me!

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Chocolate, not only eatable, but also applicable

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Chocolate, we all know it and we all love it! Chocolate comes in many different forms and sizes, even in the form of a frog. At ‘The Chocolate Line’ in Antwerp you can observe all kinds of sculptures in the form of chocolate. I ‘kissed’ the frog there, but I really wished that I could take a bite of that frog! Not only does this heavenly product function as our food, but chocolate is a also an inspiration for great fashion designers, beauty collections and care products. Instead of eating it, it’s also possible to apply it! I found products that are inspired by chocolate, so you can fulfill your chocolate needs in other ways than eating it (although nothing compares to enjoying a good piece of chocolate, brownie or a bag of M&M’s). 

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1. Lush cupcake mask
2. The Body Shop chocomania body butter
3. Philosophy Milk Chocolate Shampoo, Showergel & Bubble bath
4. Mac après chic lipstick in ‘Hot chocolate’
5. Bobbi Brown rich chocolate eyeshadow palette
6. Bobbi Brown mascara in black chocolate

Let’s talk sushi

 

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Sushi, one of my favorite foods. I love it so much that I’m willing to dedicate a whole blog to it. Two years ago, I never thought I would be such a sushi freak. I remember my first time as the day of yesterday. It happened in a all-you-can-eat restaurant in Utrecht (Netherlands) and in one word, it was terrible! I spit out some sushis because they were too big and the dark, green and orange speckled ones scared me and made me queasy – now I know that the speckles were fish eggs. 

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After the experience at the restaurant, I didn’t eat sushi for a while, until the mood to play suddenly hit me: I’m going to learn to make sushi myself! It was the best idea and it saved me from my sushi trauma at the restaurant. I began with making the small ones (maki), with salmon/cucumber/krab/avocado. Very basic, but I loved it and now I love all kinds of sushi. So here is my personal tip to the ones who don’t like sushi yet, but are willing to try it: try to make it yourself or accompanied by (a) friend(s). I can’t guarantee that you’ll like it, but making sushi is so much more fun than eating it in a restaurant. Here is a very useful how-to-make-sushi tutorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K729GqTf2pk

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The left sushi on the photo is my favorite sushi, also known as ‘Crispy maki’, a crispy roll filled with tempura flakes. So jummy! The right sushi is a california roll and also an example of the orange speckles that scared me the first time I ate sushi. 

All in all, I now can say that I’m an advanced sushi fan and I love to make different homemade sushi combinations like sushi with chicken-teriyaki and cucumber, sushi with panga filet and my favorite: sushi with crispy baked chicken burger, cucumber, avocado and krab (inspired by my best friend’s recipe). You should try it too!

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Oh, by the way, I’m a real foodie and food is big part of my lifestyle, so you can expect a lot of food blogs from me! I hope you enjoyed my sushi experiences and tips. While writing this blog, I’ve been getting huge cravings for sushi..so guess what I’m going to make this week? 

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