Oh hi there end of May *gasps*. Yes, yes another month has passed by. Again the weather is still not stabilizing to welcome Summer, but having said that there were some pretty good days in this month to enjoy the sun. Leaving the food aside that I had in Canterbury - do not worry I am working on a blogpost as we speak - I was still able to find a couple of snapshots to include in this Foodies' Fun.
After a lovely dinner at Wagamama in Amsterdam (see last Foodies' Fun here) it was safe to say that my mom, sister, and I were a bit on an Asian Fusion high. Not long after we went to Maastricht and besides a day of shopping opted to try the food at Tasty Thai. My pick from the menu was once again a success - the Kaeng massamaan with chicken.
On another evening we went out for dinner at Happy Italy. And now I realize I have taken no photos whatsoever of the dishes we made and had at home during the month. Oops. I have only been there once before and had a delicious pasta dish, but decided to go for pizza this time. Behold, the pizza dello chef with mozzarella, gorgonzola, spicy sausage, and fresh spinach. The slices of spice sausage in particular lifted the taste to a whole new level. Definitely want to have this one more often.
May means one thing for sure and that is the annual market in Hoensbroek. For lunch, my friend Lizzy and I stopped at Bufkes for a "Werrem Sjink" - a baguette with special sauce, lettuce, and some nice slices of warm roast beef. Yum!
Earlier in the day we spotted a stand that sold these baked goods and I knew I just HAD to try them. If you have seen Amelia Liana's Budapest vlog, you just cannot. I never seen it before so was excited to see a stand here on the market with (had to look it up but I found it) "Kürtőskalács". And let me tell you, she is not exaggerating in the vlog. It is warm, soft, sugary, and just good. Great comfort food I'd say and a great ending of a wonderful day at the market.
Been a while since I made one of these posts, but I am excited to announce that tomorrow evening I am on my way to Canterbury! After some deliberation, I or we - my friend Aranka and I - will be visiting our friend Bonnie who is currently doing her master's there. Eeeeek! I only ever visited England once, spending a couple of days in London with these two as well as a couple of other friends of ours. I fell in love with that city and although I want to visit it again soon, I am interested to see what Canterbury will be like. What's on the list? Well, what about going to the pub, taking a stroll to the beach, visiting the cathedral and university, and hopefully trying some quintessential British food. Shopping-wise I am going to be able to visit Boots and Superdrug and get items that aren't available here in the Netherlands (whilst restraining myself to get anything from Primark). We do not really have any plans as long as we'll enjoy ourselves which we always do, so I am looking forward to an amazing time. If I can muster up enough courage I might even try to vlog, but if not, you can bet there will be some sharing of the photos I took during my time there on the blog. Oh, and did I already mention, it is going to my first flight as well? Guess we'll have to wait and see how that all went. Enjoy the rest of your week!
This particular post has been long in the making. By that I really do mean long in the making. In fact, it is one of the reasons I decided to start my blog back in 2013. A place where I can share my experiences, thoughts, and basically anything else I want to naturally would also include the not so positive sides. Examples of these are when I was struggling with my dissertation, when I felt lost from time to time, or just when I wanted to get some thoughts out, this blog - next to my friends - has been the place for it. The situations and feelings described above? Yes, to an extent it portrays some of the ways in which my anxiety portrays itself. Some I have learned to handle or in some way overcome, others are still very present in my life whether on an everyday basis or being experienced every now and then. The reason why I am sharing this on the Internet? Simply, because it was here where I found out that there was even a word for the feelings that I experienced and realized it was something a lot of people were and are dealing with. It is for this reason that I want to contribute by sharing the things I have learned when it comes to my anxiety in the hope that others will find it useful as well.
Do not let it define you
The most important thing once you realize you suffer from anxiety is to make it clear to yourself that this is not you. You do not want this standing in your way to live your life the way you want and there are ways to handle this. Do not let it define you. For example, if I would have let my anxiety take full control, I would not have been able to go out on my own to travel and explore other places. I would not be able to go to social gatherings with people I do and do not know or events and missed out on all the fun. Sure it can be difficult from time to time not to cancel at the last minute or the sudden breathlessness overcoming me when I am heading up a busy street in the city by myself but as long as I do not let it define me, it will never have complete control.
Find what works for you
Which leads me to my second point. Once you have realized "your anxiety" i.e. the forms in which your anxiety affects you - how it makes you act and feel, but also where and when - find what works for you to cope with it. Yes, most of the times it is not easy to battle once it decides to come out and play, but finding ways to cope with whatever form of it even in the slightest of manners will only benefit you and your state of mind. One big coping mechanism for me has been putting my headphones on and playing my favourite tunes. Outer circumstances aside (catcalling is uncomfortable for everyone), I know that me feeling breathless and on edge from time to time when I am out in the city, going to supermarket or what not, is a form in which my anxiety expresses itself. Honestly, there was a time when I felt this way every single time, but once again I do not want it to get to me. So, music has been a getaway. It helps me relax and keeps the hypersensitivity at bay when I am in my own little world a bit. Listening to music is something I just love to do anyways, but knowing I will always have something with me when I need the extra bit of help instantly adds to feeling okay. I can proudly say that now in more instances than not I can just as easily walk around in public by myself without my music and be alright.
Celebrate victories no matter how small
With finding ways to learn how to deal with your anxiety, it is equally important to celebrate victories no matter how small. Whether it is taking a moment to relax, watch a film, getting yourself that bag of sweets or treating yourself on an item you've been eyeing to buy for a while, celebrate. No matter how insignificant you think it might be (to you, others, or what you think others would think of it), notice and reflect and feel good about yourself for having that moment you handled your anxiety or kept it away. I found it will not only aid in prolonging the absence of anxiety you otherwise would have been through (fully), but boosts your confidence, and serves as a remembrance when things do not turn out so great in the future.
Only a few will understand, and that's okay
Not going to lie, this has been the hardest lesson for me to learn. Over time, you just come to realize that only a few will understand and that's okay. In fact, not too long ago I was once again remembered that this is the truth. No matter how closely related people are to you, do not expect that because of that closeness they will get you and your anxiety. Understanding it for yourself is hard enough as it is, so it shouldn't be a surprise, really. And that makes it okay. You still have plenty of other things you can relate to. Nonetheless, the ones that do are worth cherishing, and will help you and your state of mind even when they do not realize it.Whether it is letting you ramble about stupid thoughts and insecurities that are bothering you even though you know it's not worth the fuss, reassuring the way you feel, letting you be, or even agreeing with things that you have in common. Simple things such as these mean the world to someone with anxiety. The few that are this to me, I thank you.
In a way, these "tips" are mere thoughts of pure reassurance, but changing your mindset in the smallest of ways - for whatever reason - can greatly affect the way you look at and experience situations and emotions and in the case of anxiety can make you feel more at ease. At least that is how it works for me, and I hope you can find some reassurance in it as well. Naturally, my mind is conjuring up all kinds of thoughts right now. "What will people think?" "I must sound so stupid/dramatic/weird/insane sharing this." "What if someone I know who doesn't know sees this?" "What will he/she do?" "What if (future) employers read this when they search my name online?" "Would anyone be interested in reading this?" Just a few that are present right now as I am nearly finished writing up this post, meaning the "publish" button is just one step away. Annoying to say the very least. However I choose to share this with you. Yes, you. The like-minded individuals out there reading this who struggle with anxiety on some level in their lives. I congratulate you and am proud of you of living your life with anxiety no matter how frequent it has found its way to creep up on you. If you are currently in a state of mind where you do not fully feel like yourself or are in an unhappy place because of this shadow hovering over you at every twist and turn, I'll bet you will be happy someday and able to be your true self. You have come all this way in your life. Stop and think about this and be proud of yourself. Sure, the shadow may be lurking around the corner even when it gets easier, but it will not become you. Choose you.
First things first, yes I am still on the look-out for a new way of implementing my favourites tunes of the month into my blog. In case you want to know what I am talking about, check my last Monthly Music - suggestions are still highly appreciated. In a way, it was quite convenient for me not to have a platform to create my monthly playlist on, as I pretty much listened only to one thing in particular - BADLANDS by Halsey. Upon hearing Castle as the soundtrack of the new film The Hunstman: Winter's War I was very intrigued to check the whole song out and it wasn't soon after that I was listening to her entire album on repeat.
I have also been venturing back to my 8tracks account and really enjoy the fact that you can just hit whatever mood or TV-series/film inspired music you want to hear and you get an catalogue of playlist that complement that entire atmosphere you're looking for. For instance, now that The Magicians first season had ended, I wanted to see what was out there on the platform and sure enough I found this playlist. Catches the eerie and dark gloomy feel of the show perfectly. So there you have it. Sweet and short.
Have been a bit out of blogging, haven't I? Well, I only missed one week, but personally I feel like I have been out of it the entire month. Mostly because I still haven't recovered fully from the flu that struck me the previous month and before I knew it there was me resting on the sofa again for another full week or so. On top of that the weather has been acting very much like it would in Autumn and even Winter. Oh yes, snow, hail, wind...just everything. And dare I say that has brought my mood a bit down as well. However, that does not mean I did not have moments to enjoy as well. I went to Amsterdam with my mom and my sister, had a fun evening of going through the photographs my friends took during their travels, and attended a party or two. Thus, whilst this is more of a note-to-self I will try my best to get into the swing of things the next couple of weeks, I promise. Until then, enjoy this Foodies' Fun.
During the past couple of weeks we have a lot of cooking shows on, it has practically become a daily marathon. From about three o'clock in the afternoon you can almost be sure that when the TV is on it displays a cooking show. Nothing to dislike, but it does make one quite hungry. It also means, my mom has another source of inspiration. It feels like this has been a recurrent introduction to at least one of the photos featured in each Foodies' Fun in the last three months or so, but yes TV shows can be added to the list as well. Just look at that beauty. Mom prepared all different kinds of dishes to accompany noodles and a good broth with it. One of the episodes was all about noodles so what better way to use the previously pertained knowledge in an amazing dish. This is mine before I added the broth.
Eggrolls are always a big yes for me, especially the ones my mom makes. Just delicious! Add a spicy cucumber salad to battle the sniffly noses, and risotto rice and you have got yourself a great meal.
One long-awaited must-try restaurant had been Wagamama - blame the British YouTubers I enjoy watching - and as it turns out Amsterdam has one right at Central Station. It was good. So so good. My sister and I have been looking forward to trying out the food here and it was a success. Even for my mom who I isn't one to really go out of her comfort zone when I comes to the food she eats. Behold, surendra's curry with chicken without and with the rice combined. A definite highlight and great ending of a shopping day in Amsterdam. Please open one closer to my home.
Not long after, my sis, mom, and I went to Eindhoven to visit Primark. Not my idea I swear, but who minds a trip to Primark, right? Last time we were there, finding a place to eat was pretty much a disaster, but since we were just browsing around we spotted De Vooruitgang. Amazing place, I love the vibe and interior. Opted for the goat cheese salad. Also great. Definitely going to visit it next time I am in Eindhoven.
About two days after I was getting poorly again. Still, it felt just like a cold and so I spent my day at work as scheduled. Unfortunately I missed what I bet must have been a fabulous high tea party at my friends' house, but do you see that photo above? As kind as they are they dropped of some of the cakes right at my door. So lovely!
Last week my sis, her boyfriend, and I were surprised by this massive amount of sushi. Sushi is for sure one of the things you can always make me happy with. Always.