Friday, 28 November 2014

This Week The Mice Have Mostly Been...

Woo hoo! It's the...


This week we've mostly been wishing we could rewind to last weekend. Well I have anyway, given that last weekend I was lazing in a hammock gazing out at this view...




Three days of complete blissed out relaxation at Gili Lankanfushi in the Maldives were sadly over far too fast. More on that when I'm able to write about it without dissolving into a puddle of 'I-want-to-go-back-NOW' tears...

When we haven't been pining for sunny days and salty hair, this week the Mice have mostly been keeping the holiday spirit alive and...

Spritzing ourselves liberally with our latest Jo Malone obsession, Wood Sage & Sea Salt. I gifted myself a bottle of this before I headed off on holiday and now I'm back deskbound, I'm dousing myself in it at least five times a day in a bid to whisk myself away to lazy lounger days. 



This unisex scent was created in a bid to bottle the essence of the English Coast. If that conjures the scent of vinegary fish & chips and less than fragrant seaweed, fear not, the Jo Malone perfume magicians were thinking much more along the lines of  rugged cliffs, sea spray and moody skies. The end result is citrussy fresh, with woody notes and not a hint of girly florals. This is without a doubt my favourite new fragrance of the year.


Tearing through beach bonkbuster heaven, Tilly Bagshawe's latest book - The Inheritance. There's nothing like a good trashtastic novel to wipe away all your office woes and have you feeling like you're reclining on a lounger in the tropics. Tilly Bagshawe's most recent release is full of heiresses with razor sharp cheekbones and tall, dark handsome farm hands - Jilly Cooper with a 2014 edge.  




Getting our festi on and revving up for three days of Hong Kong's most ridiculously named music festival - Clockenflap


Every year Hong Kong's best (and let's face it, only proper) music festival ramps up a few notches bringing the city an ever more awesome line-up set against the always jaw-dropping Victoria Harbour backdrop (no matter how long I'm here, a glimpse of that skyline on a clear night still takes my breath away).

This year the Clockenflap team have really excelled themselves, bringing HK a menagerie of music amazingness from the Chvches, The Vaccines and Rudimental to the bonkers brilliant Flaming Lips.

Which is the cue for a weekend warm-up tune...



And with that, we'll end on a little sage advice for the weekend ahead...



x
The Mice

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Cracking Christmas Pop Ups...

In three days' time it's officially December, which means we're allowed to start going Christmas crazy! I've tried to hold back, only mentioning the C-word when totally necessary, however the time has come for us to start donning some tinsel and ramping up the chrimbo cheer!!

We all know how jam-packed December gets with work socials, tonnes of festive events and Christmas jumper parties galore (fear not if you're on the hunt for your 2014 knit, a post of this year's best will be winging it's way to you shortly), so, we need to be organised to avoid missing out on all the fun!

Christmas themed events are popping up left right and centre but to have any chance of joining in we need to act quick smart! Some are already sold out...proof to be wary of all those Scrooges out there. In fact, I'm starting to think that the 'Bah Humbug' may all be an act to put us off getting to the front of the queue!

Leapfrog the Scrooges and check out 3BM's top 5 favourite seasonal soirees going on right now or coming up very soon...

Berkeley Winter Cinema - I was dying to go to this last year but didn't manage to make it down, so this year it's back at the top of my list! A magical Christmas rooftop cinema complete with wooden handmade cabins, hot water bottles, cashmere blankets, hot chocolate and snacks whilst watching a Christmas favourite! I can't think of anything I would rather do...well perhaps pay an extra £20 for the champagne version!! 


Standard tickets are £50 and give you admission to the 5pm and 7pm seating, bottomless hot chocolate and mince pies. Or pay £75 for a glass of champagne and canapes!


Wilton Pl, Knightbridge, 
London SW1X 7RL

Le Chalet at Selfridges - what more could you want than a cosy candle-lit alpine chalet way up in the sky?! Think twinkly trees, thick tartan blankets, lanterns and fur throws - the perfect ski chic log cabin! Don't expect super festive dishes, officially it has an alpine BBQ theme but I've heard great things about the tiger milk ceviche and the spit roast suckling pig. Oh, and lobster macaroni doesn't sound too bad either! My favourite bit...the hot chocolate bar yum yum yum!!! 



Selfridges Roof Top
400 Oxford Street
London, W1H 6HB

Pop up Screens Notting Hill - if the Berkeley option is slightly out of your price range then this will be right up your street at £20 a ticket. Enter through the back of a wardrobe and into a winter wonderland complete with snow! Fear not it's all snug and cosy indoors with a festive helping of mulled wine and mince pies to get you in the mood! Plus, with a movie line-up of our all time favourites of Elf, Love Actually, Home Alone and Arthur Christmas you're pretty much guaranteed to go back night after night!! 




20th Century Theatre
291 Westbourne Grove, W11 2QA

Night Tales - if dancing in a twinkly-lit gazebo whilst drinking copious amounts of steaming mulled wine and devouring treats from gourmet food stalls sounds like your sort of thing, then have I got a treat for you?! Night Tales delivers all of the above and more...a converted outdoor space in East London filled with wild gardens, live music and far too much fun! They've roped in Patty&Bun, Rum Kitchen, Voodoo Rays and Morty and Bob's to lay on the food and a hot cocktail bar to ensure everyone loses their inhibitions and fills that dance floor! 


288 - 299 Old Street
Shoreditch, EC2A 

Cheese On The Terrace at Kensington Roof Gardens - if like us, you like nothing more than devouring platefuls of cheese over the festive period, this is the perfect way to while away an evening! High up away from all the London bustle The KRG team are serving up baked cheeses and fresh bread with the city's skyline as your backdrop! They've literally got all bases covered with a hot cocktail menu to battle those winter chills! I'm already drooling over the thought of Camembert topped with garlic purée, grated Autumn truffle and bread crumbs - divine!



9 Kensington High Street
London 
W8 5SA








Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Peckish Perfect Pub : Morgan Arms

You can't beat a really good boozer in my opinion but in London they're not so easy to come across. On the rare occasion you do hit the pub jackpot, hang on for dear life to the knowledge and be strictly strategic about who you tell, or you run the risk of it becoming the hot spot for every Tom, Dick & Harry! Seeing as you're part of my extended Mouse family, I'm going to share my latest pub love with you all...

Step forward, The Morgan Arms … tucked back from Bow station, nestled besides a gorgeous little square surrounded by row upon row of charming townhouses. It really is quite the picturesque spot which was a pleasant surprise as let's be honest, Bow isn't famous for it's beauty now is it? 

 

So a few Sundays ago I had arranged a girly catch-up with my very good and utterly gorgeous university pal, Lauren. I should probably draw your attention to the fact that I was appallingly hungover (Champagne brunch escapades the previous day to blame for that!). As a result, I was feeling incredibly sorry for myself - cue the ever so quiet violins, remember I have a Champagne head! I had given Lauren the heads up on the 'situation' so when I arrived I was greeted with an almighty bear hug! I immediately perked up - the prospect of a lazy afternoon of chatter and yummy food with one of my favourite people was just too good to waste by wallowing in hungover self-pity!

So first impressions - 10 out of 10. Pretty duck egg blue painted exterior, cute hanging baskets housing colourful happy petals and brass arched lights illuminated the drinking house. It helped that it was a miserable drizzly day outside, so as soon as I stepped through the doors I felt a rush of toasty warmth and was met with smiles all round! 
 


We headed straight to our table, nestled slap bang in the middle of the action offering up the perfect view of the glorious kitchen and head chef hard at work. We were immediately asked what we would like to drink. My answer, very quickly, was 'are you frickin' kidding me? Does this grey face look like it could handle any form of booze right now…??? I'll stick to cucumber infused water please' … our waiter nodded knowingly and scurried off, only to return 5 minutes later offering up Berroca - now if this doesn't award one brownie points, I don't know what will! Our food order was taken super quickly by our uber attentive waiter, there's no faffing around in this stellar establishment. Everything sounded uber-tasty but we generically went for the Sunday roast beef. I had heard huge hype about the tasty gravy and melt in your mouth fluffy yorkshire puds so I was pretty excited to taste-test these bad boys for myself… 
 

And....I'm happy to report that the roast was rip-roaringly superb! Beasting portions, vegetables cooked to perfection with that all important crunch, moreishly divine roasty potatoes, rare beef packed full of flavour and the gravy and yorkshires lived up to our sky high expectations. I was practically bursting at the seams when I took my last mouthful and whimped out of ordering dessert. Big mistake, HUGE! Lauren put her food sweats to one side and indulged in the passionfruit panna cotta. I had a cheeky mouthful when it arrived and regretted my rash decision immediately - light, creamy and stunningly sweet.
 


Will I be making a return visit? Damn straight I will! A weekly occurrence is most certainly on the cards in fact. Thumbs up, claps all round, gold star-worthy - Morgan Arms, two words … YOU. ROCK. 

The Morgan Arms
43 Morgan St 
Bow
London 
E3 5AAT

0208 980 6389


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Get Your Cosy On...

With Black Friday looming this weekend it's time to get those Christmas shopping lists at the ready and blitz through them in one painful swoop! It's never going to be pleasurable but if you can get fabulous gifts and a slight bargain I say why not?!

For me it's not only Christmas shopping I'm focusing on but also my favourite wardrobe category - knitwear! Every morning after I peel myself from my bed and shiver my way out of the shower, all I want to do is snuggle up in a cosy jumper! I'm at a complete stump as to how to approach the office to cocktails outfit scenario but for now I just want to be cosy but chic!

That's a cue for some picture inspiration if ever I heard one... 










I've already made a few purchases (a cricket jumper for one, with the help of HK mouse's post) but by no means enough...so the hunt begins!

The golden rule before shopping in such crazy circumstances (that's if you brave the shops...I think I'll stick to the safety of my laptop and sofa) is know what you want before you go - there's nothing worse than indecisive ambling!!

So we've had a little scour of all our favourite brands and with our inspiration in mind, here's 3BM's top cosy knit picks...


Zara Patterned Poncho, £59.99



Joseph Cashmere Cape, £385




Marques'Almeida for Topshop, £70





Jonathon Saunders Oversized Knit, £780





Turtle Neck Cable Jumper, £45.99



Isabel Marant Alpaca & Wool Jumper, £515













Monday, 24 November 2014

Light Fantastic: BXXLGHT

We've blogged a couple of times about light art, from bespoke neon signs to illuminated letters. This week though, we've stumbled upon what might just be our favourite version of letter lighting yet - BXXLGHT Light Boxes

Swedish designer, Daniela Upmark, set up BXXLGHT in 2013 after a trip to New York, with the aim of creating accessibly priced art that looked amazing, would brighten homes around the world and that each buyer could personalise if they wished. Hey presto, the BXXLGHT lightbox was born. 

Bag an off the peg version which comes in two sizes bearing a variety of phrases from the super cute to the frankly quite naughty... 

I Am Bananas For You (Small)
410



You Had Me At Hello (Big)
510



Baby It's Cold Outside (Big)
510



Be Naked When I Come Home (Big)
510



Alternatively, exercise a little creative flair and come up with your very own unique lightbox - add your name, your family motto or your favourite saying. Best of all, when you get bored, you can switch the wording up to something new with just a scramble of a couple of tiles. We're head over heels in love!

And, we think we know just what Mice Towers is currently missing...


Friday, 21 November 2014

This Week The Mice Have Mostly Been....

WOW...



...however fear not, the weekend is here! Soon enough we can down tools and stop feeling the need to run everywhere just to save a few precious minutes of the day and instead pick up a gin and amble to the bar for another!! 

When we haven't been running around at breakneck speed, the Mice have mostly been... 

Feeling smug with our latest Beulah purchase - involves supporting a great cause AND shopping... what better combination?!

Now that the wet and wintry weather has rolled in, my morning commute has just got that little bit more unbearable. Not only am I lugging multiple bags around (as I can never quite fit all my belongings into one), but I also have my coat and umbrella to balance on my breaking arms! After a particularly bad morning where a 'gentleman' trod on my new suede Whistles boots with his wet muddy man shoe, I decided I needed a big canvas tote in my life which could hold ALL my daily essentials and possessions!

During my morning Instagram peruse I stumbled across a photo of Millie Mackintosh with a very cute tote and an anti slavery hashtag...I was intrigued...



After checking out the Beulah website, I not only fell in love with the cobalt heart print 'Made With Love' tote but with the whole story behind it. 

Natasha and Lavinia founded The Beulah Trust in January last year, their main aim - eradicating slavery. The charity provides grants for skills courses to give woman who are/have been victims of sex trafficking and abuse the opportunity to find work. My new 'Made With Love' tote is produced by Freeset, a business in Kolkata in India, who provide a bank account, work and income for these woman enabling them to create a new start for themselves. 

It's refreshing to find a fashion brand with such a heart warming ethos at its very core and the knowledge that your purchase is not making the rich richer but actually creating an industry to help an amazing cause. 

And if it's not a bag you're after they have much more to offer, I'm now lusting after the printed shawls!! Check the full range out here and get spending my friends! 



Gleefully tearing open our November Flavour Full Stop box to unearth a whole new collection of treats! This month has been our favourite yet, a box packed lovingly with a Thanksgiving theme! 




Ok I know Thanksgiving is an American tradition but if we're going to adopt the Black Friday in our retail world, then why can't we also indulge in pumpkins and peanut butter and jelly?!

The founder of Flavour Full Stop, Heather, lived in California for a few years so it was a pretty exciting one for her to put together. You can tell it was done with extra TLC as everything I unearthed had clearly been thought through, was fun and looked super yum! So much so that one part didn't even make it through that evening...inhaled in seconds!!!

This month our treats were...

- Doorstop Baking - double Chocolate Brownie Mix. A personal favourite for us - basically brownies in a pot! Minimal measuring required just empty the contents of the jar into a bowl with butter and eggs and there you have it...walnuts, choc chips and all! We're still to bake ours but oh-so-excited - follow up post will be winging it's way for sure!

- The Market Wraps - Louisiana's BBQ Sauce - already in full swing in the 3BM Kitchen - the perfect marinade for finger licking good chicken wings!

- Keen Almond Butter Pumpkin Spice - pumpkin had to feature somewhere, but who would have thought in a butter?! Basically a healthy alternative to nutella or peanut butter...what's not to like! Also included in our box was a fab Pumpkin Spice Almond Cookie recipe which I can't wait to try out...again watch this space for a follow up post!

- Square Root London - Root Beer - a Hackney based company taking over London, delivering their sodas on a vintage tricycle!

Manfood Bread & Butter Pickles - a traditional American inspired pickle with lots of crunch and deliciousness that we'll apparently be cooking meat just so we can eat this Manfood!!


- Sugar 245 - Peanut Butter and Jelly Marshmallows - if you hadn't guessed these were the beauties that didn't make it through the night. Heaven in a little cube - super soft, super fluffy and super tasty...there's no better combination than peanut butter and jelly in my eyes and after trying these I'm sure you'll agree!! 

My favourite part...Sugar 245 do an annual subscription for £100 where you get two 100g boxes each month plus samples of new flavours...HEAVENLY!



Right all you lovely lot, now that I've made all your tummies rumble it's time to knuckle down and get through this fabulous Friday and hit the weekend! 


The Mice x


P.s ALWAYS remember...






Wednesday, 19 November 2014

3BM Kitchen: Chickpea Curry

With the bitter wintry London weather finally setting in, all Mini Mouse and I feel like doing at the minute is hibernating. Hiding away from Jack Frost, wrapped up in cosy cashmere with a big hearty dinner ... well that's exactly what we did yesterday night! As Mondays are notoriously THE worst day of the week, as soon as 5.30pm struck we skidaddled out of work, zipped in and out of dawdling tourists on Carnaby Street, hopped on the central line and we were home in a jiffy!
 
So what culinary delight did we whip up I hear you ask! Well fellow Mice let me tell you it went down a treat, some would say a rip-roaring success! A divine, light and healthy chickpea and tomato curry with a kick. Designed to be of the veggie variety but we threw in some extra chicken for good measure - why not! Seriously delicious and so quick and easy to make...

Ingredients - serves 2:
 
1 tsp of cumin
2 tsp of chopped coriander
1 tbsp of coconut oil
1 white onion
2 inches of grated ginger
2 cloves of garlic
1 chicken breast
400g of tomatoes
400g can of chickpeas
Half a fresh red chilli
1 tsp of garam masala
salt and pepper

1. Kick the recipe off by getting your prepping arse in gear! Get your chickpeas ready to go and your ingredients sliced and diced...




2. Next dry fry the cumin and coriander in a pan...


3. Finely dice your onion and add to the pan with your coconut oil - sauté for five minutes

4. Throw your crushed garlic into the pan with your ginger and add a good few twists of cracker pepper, stir for a minute

5. Next add your tomatoes, chickpeas, chilli and garam masala - allow to bubble away and cook for 30 minutes



6. Serve up! Done & done...




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