Experimental cooking, 50 boxes, boxsets and a sudden love of cauli rice: aka a little life update

I've neglected my blog a little bit since I moved, and considering everything is W E I R D at the moment, and I've been furloughed (more on that in a bit) I should be posting 10 times a day and writing more and more. But I'm not. Even just kick-starting this now, I've realised just how happy writing makes me, and I'm certainly going to use it as an outlet of emotions to try and combat all of the negativity that's happening at the moment. Now, don't get me wrong, I know I am in a very privileged position, having potentially had it (but if I did it was extremely mild), being furloughed, in a house with a roof over my head, enough room for two people to cope with spending 24 hours of the day together, the internet, food in my cupboards and books to read. But still, it is important not to discount or down-play any emotions you could be having at this point in time because there are people who are worse off than you. Just understand that, and understand you are you and the emotions you are feeling are true and valid, and if possible, do what you can to help those less fortunate than yourselves.

I've been trying to keep busy myself. We FINALLY MOVED HOUSE! Here's a lil tour of the best bits, in a blog post I did.

Moving in this time was HARD lemme tell you that- we had one moving van cancel and managed to get another and the guys who did it were great! They even offered us hand gel as we got it done.

Getting the keys from the letting agent as we 'checked in' to our new flat was funny, having them passed over whilst standing 2m away certainly was a novelty, but we did it and we managed to move!

We've been unpacking slowly and steadily, and the large living room (with beautiful bay windows might I add) is looking great! I cannot say how lovely it really is to have a place just to yourself, surrounded by your history with the person you love.

I've been decorating on a budget, and aside from a couple of bits of furniture we moved with (bed and TV included) we managed to kit the whole place out in under a grand- I spent a lot of time comparing prices on Ebay! And it's turned out pretty cool if you ask me- very mid-century with some luxe touches throughout.

When we first got the place there was a few days of weird limbo where the old h0use looked a bit like a crack den because we had everything either in bin bags or boxes, and our new house contained nothing but boxes of flat packed furniture and our mattress (which my uncle graciously drove over from the Bush). We spent those days ordering Deliveroo, dancing around with happiness that we had our own home, and building flat packed furniture. And maybe getting into little squabbles over which nail goes into which hole. No, that's not a euphemism.

So, then we moved and it was great! Hard work, mind, and it even started snowing for about 5 minutes whilst we were moving things up the stairs to our flat! Very weird for late March.

And, we've been spending 23 1/2 hours in here, all day, everyday. P is working from home which means his life has a schedule and a routine to live to (and because of this mine does sort of too) but I'm on furlough which means it was meant to be self-enrichment time! It was supposed to be get fit, do yoga, do writing, get freelance gig time! But, it's not really. Turns out being stuck in your own personal version of Big Brother really depletes your motivation levels so I haven't really been getting a lot done, or as much as I wanted, but I've got at least another 3 weeks of this minimum so I'm not too worried.

In terms of getting fit, I've been following Yoga with Adrian's 30 day Yoga journey and Bloglates' workout videos, as well as trying to go for runs (more of a speed walk). I'm trying to do at least an hour and 20 of exercise a day as I find it really helps me sleep better at night, something which I've been struggling with because of lockdown. I love these videos because both of them aren't focused on loosing weight and transforming yourself, more being strong and happy with your body, which as you all know is what I am all for.

Yes, obviously we've been watching a lot of Tv in this time, from binge-watching Mad Men (a fave, purely because of Janie Bryant's costume wizardry) to finding new favourites like Chasing Shadows, a miniseries about catching the killers of missing people or SS GB, a drama focused on what WW2 would've been like if the Nazis had won and invaded England- there's a lot of great TV out at the moment, although I'm trying not to spend all of my time staring at screens.

I've also been focused on reading too- from old favourites that I haven't read since I was a teenager like American Psycho to new fiction like Bunnies (a horrifying satire of American WASPs) or gritty true crime like Unsolved: The Daniel Morgan murder. Overall, my taste of reading is really eclectic and I switch from genre to genre, and I most likely do so to stop me from being bored with one thing. Despite this, I read A LOT and I am actually relishing the time I have to do so.

I haven't been writing as much as I want to, but recently I've had a real burst of creative inspiration and motivation so hopefully I can ride this wave! We even did a photoshoot in the new flat, with pictures coming soon! That was fun- in my blog post about anxiety and the virus I talk about how clinging to your sense of self can really help you stay sane during this time, and doing that photoshoot really helped me.

Cooking however, in the Amey-Loane household (as we have christened it, and all houses that follow) has really taken a Heston Blumenthal turn- I've christened Saturday nights at home Burger Night, with each week being a chance to take a classic burger to the next level. Last week was smash burgers, the week before fried egg and spinach. Let's see what next week has in store! I've also been experimenting with healthy alternatives, and am making my own soup for lunch- I made my own hot sauce, healthy brownies and even a Duck L'Orange risotto one night! Easter lunch was a roasted leg of lamb you can see above and was delicious! Cauli rice has now taken over in my kitchen as an essential as I explore healthier options whilst we barely get off our arse all day. I've always loved cooking and even consider myself good at it!

On a side note, although I've been trying desperately hard to keep myself busy (as you can see from above) I am REALLY missing my job. So much. I miss my colleagues so much it's unreal, even just gossiping and bantering with them, let alone the love and support we give each other. I miss my workplace, trying on clothes in my spare time and chatting. I miss my clients, I miss styling them so much, learning their stories, gaining their trust, forging friendships, giving and receiving advice and so much more. I miss getting up every morning with a hectic day to look forward too.

So, there are ups and downs to my current situation. Even though I managed to secure a Tesco delivery slot for two days away, I'm certainly still struggling with my anxiety, more so than ever. I'm clinging onto everything that makes Ciara Ciara, this blog included. And of course, I would not be able to go through lockdown alone, so thank you so much P for being my best friend throughout all of this. It's nice to have someone to pillow fight with, to moan with and to laugh with in times where if I was alone, I'm pretty sure I would've gone mad by now.

What to expect in the future from me? Lots more blog posts I hope. I'll space out the ones about the virus so not to emphasise any worries people are having and I'll try to keep it very fashion and lifestyle focused, with tips for how to keep yourself busy at the moment.

Stay safe everyone.

C x

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London-based writer and stylist.

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