Sunday, 29 November 2015

Shrewsbury Sunday: The Peach Tree

I'm bringing back Shrewsbury Sunday for the same reason I invented it over a year ago... The Peach Tree. One of my favourite restaurants since moving to Shrewsbury which is also attached to Havana, one of my favourite bars (oh hey, Rum & Ting Happy Hour)!

You know when you see on Facebook, "Share and like to win" and you think, I'll do it anyway with no chance whatsoever of winning, well I proved myself wrong when I won a 2 course meal for 2 people a couple of weeks ago. Wednesday night couldn't come soon enough and I was so excited to go back to the Peach Tree and take my Mum with me for the first time. Ive been struggling lately for blog ideas but as I said all those months ago last year, the food is just SO good I couldn't not snap away and blog about it.

For starter we shared the Korean BBQ Piggy Bits (MY FAVOURITE!) and the Tomato and Basil Bruschetta. The Piggy Bits are my absolute favourite food from the Peach Tree and have had them every time I've been and even had them at the Shrewsbury Food Festival.. I won't like, they now come with noodles and I enjoyed the Piggy Bits that much Nick ate the noodle part as I was more excited over the pork. The texture of each piggy bit is tender and soft and just the perfect taste of BBQ without being too overpowering and just enough for a starter so you don't ruin your main.

Although sharing two starters between 2 of you doesn't help the ruining your main when the second is the bruschetta with a pate style tomato and a gorgeous basil pesto on gorgeous toasted bread. The different in tastes work so perfectly and wasn't too heavy for a starter at all. Mmmhhmmmm!

For Mains, me, Mum and Nick had one each and I wasn't on planning on sharing my pork and mushroom (normally beef for if anyone can't find it on the menu!) stroganoff when it arrived. Oh my.. I was so indecisive when it came to the main but I made the best choice. It was a beaut of a stroganoff and the pork again was super tender and just fell apart in your mouth. The smell itself was enough to make your mouth water so I can't recommend this main enough - definitely my top choice.

By the time I'd eaten a (actually.. nearly 2) starter(s), and a big main, I couldn't fit in a pudding by it was good to see that they still have the Eton Mess on the menu as it is the ultimate pudding. I've had it 2 or 3 times at The Peach Tree and would have it even in winter.. unless I felt like I needed a jog home!

Not only is The Peach Tree one of my favourite places for food, but even the smaller details such as the wine, or the decor, or even the 2 courses for £10 menu and the lovely ladies looking after you, make the perfect night out for date night or a girls night out with friends!

Be sure to head over to their Facebook page to check out all their latest offers and competitions.. although I must warn you, even the photos will make your mouth water!

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

My Tattoos.. And thoughts on them years later!

Today is the 7 year anniversary of my first ever tattoo and it makes me wonder about the tattoos I've had since and how much I now dislike one or two. I hold my hands up to the fact, and anyone who knows me will agree, that I'm way too spontaneous for my own good and out of the 4/5 tattoos I have, only 1 was planned.. And even then it was a couple of days before. Each time it's been a spare of the moment thing and although it's a story to tell, I sometimes think my spontaneous-ness got the better of me...

My first ever tattoo was the day before my Sisters birthday.. The first birthday we had after losing her. So to honour her, I decided I wanted her initials tattooed on me. Me and a friend, Holly were having a girly day shopping in town and Holly wanted to know how much it would cost for her lip pierced (or something along those lines) so we went into the Tattoo and piecing shop next to the cafe I used to work in. I knew the guys in there as I'd worked next door for over a year on a weekend so got chatting and said that I wasn't working the next day as it would've been my Sisters birthday.. And somehow just minutes later I was in the chair, for the first time, just SIXTEEN years old, having a tattoo. 

I was surprised at how little it hurt compared to what I expected and I ended up going back a week later for the little pattern and star underneath. The part of the story I always love telling us the fact I went into my Mum's work and told her in front of her colleagues on the shop floor so she couldn't shout at me! 7 years on, I love the meaning of the tattoo but I wish I'd had it nearer my wrist and not half way up my forearm - and a different pattern maybe to make it bigger and stand out! 

A few years later in 2011 when I'd left college and had a job for a couple of years and been working for actress/singer Karen David in London part time for 9 months, I was heartbroken when I finished my internship. To remember the best few months of my life,  I got a music note on my little finger as a) Karen's a singer and still now like a big Sister, and b) my favourite song is about Pinky Swears. 

Out of all of these tattoos, this was by far the most painful and I'm sure I cracked the guys knee I was gripping so hard! 

4 years on, I love the meaning but it's fading and got little bits missing so I didn't choose the best place for it - but it's the one tattoo that's on show all the time and I do get people saying how nice it is. 

Late in 2012 I'd caught the tattoo but so when my girl Abi asked how it felt having a tattoo, I decided to take her to the tattoo shop and show her 🙈 I wasn't planning on having one and it was definitely a stupid choice as I think now it's a bit tacky and there's so many other things I look at now and think "that would look great on the back of my neck". It hurt like hell too. This is the one I regret the most as pretty as it is! 

Finally, the tattoo I have the biggest love/hate relationship with! 

While I was in LA in 2013, one of the things at the top of my to do list was visit High Volltage tattoo shop where they film LA Ink! I found the shop and the queue was out the door but I was determined to get a T Shirt or some kind of memrobillia! I had no idea that item would be a tattoo after queuing for an hour for the bloke in front of me to change his mind last second. I made the split second decision to jump in and say I would love to take it as I've travelled all the way from England. They said any tattoo no matter what size would have a starting price at $200 and I had about 10 minutes to choose what I want and half an hour to have it done. I knew I wanted something to do with America and I suggested a dollar sign.. They advised they'd "go and get my artist" and came back with Mojo Foster so I was that star struck I didn't really look at what he drew, I just said yes. It really was the most incredible time talking to him and some of the others but my dollar sign looks more like another music note and I've been battling with the decision of covering it up.. Not liking it Cs Having it done at LA Ink.. Hard choice right? 

I'll definitely be thinking about covering up my 4 inch dollar sign but it will take something I really want and love to do it! Same goes with any other tattoos, I'm not in a rush for more (even though I'm forever Pinterest-ing tattoo ideas) but I'll be sure to think before in ink now I'm idler and hopefully wiser.

Would love to see and hear anyone else's tattoo stories and any mistakes you may have made ;) 

Twitter/Instagram: MsSarahJack 💕

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Fitness Update: 12 Week Mark of PT

Literally can't believe it's been 12 weeks since I found my new motivation by turning to Sasha at On Form Fitness ( - I feel so good at the moment so thought I'd do just a little update! 

So my main aim was to sort my bingo wings out for my dress at the ball and it's safe to say I felt amazing in my dress and I had so many compliments. The ball was at the 10 week Mark and I'm still shocked at how much my body and even emotional levels have changed in less than 3 months. The PT sessions were the best and my favourite way to let off stress and steam in the run up the the ball and I don't think emotionally or physically I would've coped on the night or in the lead up without them. 

Don't think I posted the above photo last time and I hate posting underwear photos because.. Well, just urgh but I'm so glad I was encouraged to take photos every couple of weeks as I think I would never have realised what had changed and I would've just felt like I'd stayed the same without realising. My arms were the only body part really I could see had changed (and I'm sure Nick could too after he caught me flexing in the mirror on several occasions *monkey hiding face emoji*).

(10 week Mark) 

So 12 weeks in and I've lost 16cm around my waist altogether (or something along those lines) Despite having a couple of weeks of having put on half a CM. I'm also back into my size 12 jeans.. Even if they are a little tight around bottom and I can definitely see a different in my legs - not really toned up, just a little slimmer. 

As for food and drink, I've struggled slightly, the last month or so particularly - with 3 Saturday nights out in a row and my birthday, I'd had quite a lot of alcohol and therefore my body fat went up and my water levels went down but even though it took a few days after the ball and birthday to get my motivation back. 2 weeks on I'm back in the gym after work and into my PT sessions as well as back on the orange juice and making sure I'm eating better and going out less! I have bitten the bullet and turned into one of those girls who drinks protein shakes 💪🏻 I went for the Maxi Nutrition Strength and power which not only helps gain muscle 3 times as fast, but helps strength too! I'm sure I'll be writing a full review shortly but all you need to know for now is that it tastes goooooood!

Without the ball, I am worried that my motivation will come and go as it already has but I have toyed with the idea of the World Columbia Threadneedle Triathlon next year so I'm currently trying to pluck up the courage to even attempt to think about the training (baring in mind I can't run to the end of my road) but I think it'd be great to have something to aim for - any tips from other Triathlon'ers are muchly appreciated ;) 

Just a little update as a couple of people have asked how I'm getting on and it's a good way of me keeping track of photos etc.. Plus it means I have to carry on so I can keep this blog going 🙈😂

If anyone has any tips on how to get through the festive season without losing motivation and/or gaining weight, please Tweet me up! Next time I'll try and do a post of either what I do in the gym or my favourite healthy recipes :)

Twitter/Instagram: MsSarahJack

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Black tie, birthdays, blogging fail & new additions!

Well.. Don't really know where to start with this post!

It's been so long and even though I've been like "yeaaaahhh, back on the blogging train".. I've failed at blogging :(

It's been a crazzzzy few weeks/months as for those who don't know, I hosted a black tie ball on Saturday 7th November in memory of my sister and a close friend to raise money for Bone Cancer Research Trust so that has taken a huge chunk of my life/time recently.

The evening was INCREDIBLE and it couldn't have been better - to be surrounded by friends, family, old school teachers for such a special occasion.. A night I will never forget. 

The support we had on the night from both people there and people on Facebook etc sending us "good luck" messages was so overwhelming and I'm so grateful for every text/Facebook post and tweet.

Everything was planned to the smallest detail whether it be the home made cupcakes on each place setting to the shoes I wore! We've not totalled all the money yet but we've estimated around £5000 for BCRT which makes me so incredibly proud. 

Dress - Ted Baker 

2 days after the ball was my birthday - normally I'm like a child when it comes to birthdays but I barely had a chance to think about it this year. 

Me and Nick travelled up to Blackpool the night before my birthday so we could have a couple of days together after the mad months before which was lovely - as chavvy and messy as people think Blackpool is, I love nothing more than to have a couple of drinks over looking the sea, all snuggled in big coats and beanie hats followed by some fun with the 2p slot machines! 

I had a lovely birthday and all my family kindly gave me spending money ready for a couple of days in Birmingham at the end of the month at the Christmas Markets and Good Food Show... I'm on my way James Martin!

Finally on the life update - one of the presents I did get was from Nick and was waiting for me when we got home after 5 days away. I walked into the flat and got super confused by the empty Guinea pig cage - apparently Paddy had asked for some new friends so my empty cage was just the start and yesterday we went and chose 2 new little fellas to join the family! 

I was back in the gym this morning and now have to return back to normal life and back to reality after the madness of this week. It's been an amazing week and I definitely don't want it to end.

Thank you to anyone who wished me good luck or happy birthday and here's to the restart of my blog and getting back to grips with posting more regularly ;) 

Twitter & Instagram: MsSarahJack