happy halloween!

Today's the 30th October, meaning that, in case you weren't aware, it's Hallowe'en! With all the candy, dressing up and constant Americanisms, you can't help but get caught up in the festivity.

So, to celebrate this celebration, I have a themed cupcake recipe to share with y'all. Enjoy!

Yes, cupcakes! A fandom no one's ever managed to leave, the bane of many people's diets and fares, daughter of Victoria Sponge, son of Birthday Cake... right here for you!

First of all, you'll need to preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius/ 375 degrees Fahrenheit/ Gas Mark 5 (oh the research I had to do for those conversions!) and let the heat simmer whilst you bake.
Then, crack your eggs into a mixing bowl, trying with all your might to avoid dropping shell in the mix, and beat them so that the yolk runs into the white. Measure out your butter and sugar and mix them all together.
Measure your flour, sift it into the bowl and mix again - I like to use a handmixer so that my hand doesn't fall off into the bowl with the ingredients. Add vanilla essence and, oddly enough, mix again.
Your cake mixture should now look creamy and smooth, a pale yellow shade, and that's when you know it's okay to lick the spoon. Good? Yes, let's continue.
Now you'll just want to spread the batter evenly into twelve cupcake cases and put in the oven for approximately fifteen minutes - or a little less if your oven isn't as pathetic as mine - and tradaa, your cupcakes are ready to decorate!

Yes, the designs are über low-quality but eh, it wasn't long until they were all demolished. I created the icing for the majority of my cakes by mixing some milk with icing sugar, and for the 'cat' cupcakes I mixed some raw coco powder with milk - the bitter taste of the coco completely contradicted that of the sweet bake beneath and made it taste awesomeee! Totally not an accident.

Happy Hallowe'en, ya'll!

amy goes to marmaris, turkey, part three!

Hey guys! I'm back with part three of four of my two week trip to Marmaris, Turkey! 
Again, this is pretty photo-heavy, but I hope y'all enjoy it - you might want to check out part one and part two first if you're new here (don't forget to say hi!).

One thing that I found out pretty quickly from where we were staying is that the Turkish can be very friendly when they want you to buy something. My family and I would walk down by the beachside of an evening to find somewhere to eat (ideally with local eaters), where we would constantly hear "hello family you look very nice" and "what a nice camera, please take a photo of me" and "you must be very nice and hungry". Friendly? Yes. Irritating? Also yes.
Whenever I went into a small shop to buy some shoes, one of the Turkish shop people would wait on me hand and foot.. literally. They would unlace my boots, find a pair of shoes that I "might like" and actually put them on for me, doing them up and everything. It was crazy, yet a pretty good idea - it is tres hard to say no to a pair of shoes when you have them laced up tight against your ankles.

- Icmeler - Icmeler beachside - cafe art - side walk - pastel drawing - shopping side - Turkish delight - rainbow pastel - beach view - sunbathers - chilli - beach walk - cliffside - boating it - anchor - Turkish statue - water cliff - cliff shine - Mediterranean - ocean blue - salted glasses -

The best part of my time in Marmaris, as I mentioned in my last post, was riding on a small sailboat across the city waters. The sun beating down on the pale exterior, salt water splashing our faces, a cool breeze whipping our hair... it was just so awesome. Although the transport was slow, the breathtaking views really made up for it. 
I even thought that I had gotten a bit of a tan, but when the Turkish waiters and shop assistants would compare their skin colour to mine (laughing..), I looked like a stick of chalk. However, a few weeks later, back in London, I was showing off my 'tan' when one of my friend's retorted, "Yeah, you don't look quite so blue!" so yes, I did get a, by my standards, pretty decent tan!

- aquamarine - boat rest - floating cliff - glasses salt - mall - is it going to rain? - overly fashionable model - blueport - who knows - darkside - pier - Banksy? - tree mark - melon truck - old woman marketing - Turkish fruit - Turkish fruit - we'll never know what this is - 

The hotel that we were staying at, High Life, was an awesome little place, and the staff were very... friendly: there was Phillis, who would hug us and kiss us whenever we met, slobbering us in sweat; Cobra, who others thought could be a bit rude, and would keep asking me what my problem was; Addy, who seemed way too young to be working 20 hours a day; Tony, the chef, as Turkish as could be. They tolerated us tourists well, even when I would stop to take photos of anything and everything. 

- Marmaris walk - bike side - bottle top collector - bluebay dancers - lightening robot - Latina dancers - Michael Jackson tribute - Marmaris side - reception - hotel interior - gallery - art - "share a coke with... Bitanem" - Turkish wild flower - school  statue - Turkish bus - crossing - riverside -

There was a hotel a few streets down from High Life called Blue Bay, and they would have nightly entertainment. My family and I went own there a few times, only to be confronted with Latin dancers, bellydancers, a Michael Jackson tribute act and LED dancing robots. It sounds cheesy, but... well, okay yes it was super cheesy. Even so, the atmosphere was awesome, and I took hundreds upon hundreds of photos of the bright colours and fast paced dancers. They had a small entrance lobby with a water fountain and what looked like marble models, and by the middle side of it all was a lifesized marble horse statue. Guys, it was fantastic.
However, although my time in Marmaris was mostly positive, from my experience I found that the Turkish sellers could quite happily edit the prices of their products, meaning that you can easily get conned. For example, I went to a small store to buy a few things, where they overcharged me by 20tl. I went back the next day to buy another pair of earrings, where the same seller, not realising he'd served me yesterday, charged me triple the price! It was pretty surreal, as I've never been conned, but apparently it's a common thing - if any of you guys go to Turkey, be sure to double check the prices.

- moped lane - riverside - boatside - Marmaris - walk - ocean blue  - Turkish statue - outlook - seaside view - cottage - raspberry sorbet - people seem to be a lot nicer when they want you to buy something - sailors - sunset - stunning peach stone - Marmaris walk - stray cat - Turkish postbox -


Have a good day, y'all!