My Manchester Trip(s)

As all you regular visitors/followers on any of my sites will know. I have been to Manchester twice in the recent past. Once at the start of July and once at the start of August. You may also wonder why I have been there so often. It’s quite simple really. Danny, the boyfriend, is originally from Manchester, so it is the perfect excuse for a weekend away. When we went in July it was pretty much for a quick visit to see his mum as he hadn’t been home since early March. August was to see Anberlin in concert and spend some time with Danny’s sister for her birthday.
I always get so stressed before going away. I have to have everything planned in advance. But thankfully as we were going to visit Danny’s family I was able to leave it all up to him to sort both times. I mainly took charge of printing everything off and arranging a hotel for gig night. I also made sure we got to the airport on time. I did this by making sure we left the house four hours before our flight. It worked fine the first time when we were getting to the airport by bus. The second time not so much as we got a lift and had to arse about for some time. Ah sure. Better to be safe than sorry.
The one thing I was very worried about was actually getting to Danny’s mum’s house. Thing is she lives in a lovely little town called Ramsbottom. As lovely as it is it is still 40 minutes from Manchester City/Airport. The local taxi company had a deal on which was pretty handy. It cost us £25 to get to where we were staying. It was either that or get a Train, Bus, Metro and taxi.
I of course got some shopping in both times we went over. The July visit consisted of me getting disco pants and LOADS in Primark and pretty much cost me all my money. The second visit I was a bit more smart, choosing to invest wisely in make up brands I can’t get at home and such. To be honest though, the days in Manchester were probably the part of the trips I wasn’t too fussed about. At the end of the day shopping is shopping and I much preferred hanging around Ramsbottom than bashing around Manchester hoping to find nice presents. Especially when shopping grates on my nerves at the best of times.
The best part of the days where we were actually in Manchester City had to be staying in the Ibis Hotel and going to see Anberlin in Manchester University. Anberlin has been one of Danny’s favourite bands for a long time and they have decided to call it a day at the end of 2014. Before that day arrives they have released a final album and gone on a final world tour, which Danny had tickets for. The first song Danny ever got me to listen to was an Anberlin song and we have listened to them every day since so not only did he get to see his favourite band but I felt like I was also seeing mine. It was a bonus when we got to meet them all after. 
I love gigs, I love the music and the atmosphere and I had such a great time that night but I have to say the best part for me was dragging my sweaty, weary body into the shower after the gig and getting into a nice, plush, hotel bed. The shower was UNREAL even if it does look like the inside of the space ship.
I just realised I’m pretty much blabbering on and I don’t want to bore you. I’m sure if you wanted to know ALL about my trip you would have gone yourself. I will point out two more things I ADORED and then I will leave you to enjoy the rest of this not so awful day. Yes they are both food related.
The first is a restaurant called Spice Garden. It is Thai and the best you will ever get. The one problem is everything is cooked there and then and it is quite small but also takes take out orders, so you can be waiting on the food for a fairly long time. But I will say it is always worth it. Their Pad Thai is my favourite meal in the world and I genuinely can’t wait to go back to Ramsbottom to get it again.
The second is a café and again I look forward to going back again. We went there during our first visit and all I wanted when we got home was to go back to The Chocolate Café. I was so happy when Danny’s sister said she wanted to go there for her birthday. I have no pictures to show you how cute it is but basically downstairs is a little chocolate shop and upstairs is a café selling all manner of chocolate infused foods. They do the best hot chocolate I have ever have. I PROMISE I will get photos when I go back.
That’s all for me. My next post will be live just after the weekend as it is mine and Danny’s birthdays and I will delve a little further into my anxiety. Until then I will share the few photos I took on my trips with you.
PS. I’ve been shortlisted for the BEST LIFESTYLE BLOG in the BLOG AWARDS IRELAND. Thanks for all the support.
PPS. Please send me post ideas or #AskLynnJo questions via my email which is listed in my information 😀
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Blog Awards Ireland Launch Party

Am I a socialite now? 

So last night I went to the launch of Blog Awards Ireland 2014 last night and I came very close to not going. In the days I got very socially anxious about going to such a big event. I knew my boyfriend wasn’t too keen on going either so I tried desperately to find a friend (a bloggy friend) to go with me, but unfortunately we don’t all work nine to five. 

To try pump myself up for the event, and so I wouldn’t have a major panic attack, I went out and bought a nice new outfit, that was somewhat out of my comfort zone, and got all dolled up.

When I got there it was very busy and I did start freaking out a little. The event description had said there would be ‘fun and games’ which I think played on my mind. I really did not want to be called up in front of everyone. If I know I have to get up in front of a crowd and perform or speak, it’s no bother to me, but it’s the unexpected ones and the thoughts that it might happen that cause me to freak out. 

Thankfully I did not get called up. The large crowd did make me a bit uneasy as I kept getting bumped and had to move out of everyone’s way. It thinned out though so it’s okay. 

I did really enjoy myself though and so did Danny, I think. We were downstairs in Pacinos which is such a nice venue. There were lovely complimentary cocktails provided. Madeline over at Tea Lady Tales played bartender for the night and did a brilliant job. 

The food for the night was courtesy of Glenisk. I had eaten before the event so I wasn’t too hungry but I did manage to grab some of their Coronation Chicken Cups which were DELISH. So much so I demanded the recipe. You can get this recipe as well as all the other treats they served here.

All in all it was a fabulous night, thank you so much to Amanda and Lorna for putting it all together. Whilst I only chatted to two other people it was two more than I’d normally be comfortable talking to so I am pretty happy about it. It was definitely a step in the right direction. 

Have a look at some photos of the night taken by the wonderful Damien over at Cearbhuil Studios, I hope you don’t mind me nicking some of these. 

If any of you give those recipes a try make sure you send me some snaps on Twitter.


Some nice organiser ladies / Photo Cred: Cearbhuil Studios

The lovely girls who kept us fed / Photo Cred: Cearbhuil Studios

Glenisk are amazing sponsors / Photo Cred: Cearbhuil Studios

Myself and the handsome Danny / Photo Cred: Cearbhuil Studios

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Now You’ve Got Your Results…

Time to brick it for the offers eh? I honestly wouldn’t bother.

When I was getting my results I was away in London which definitely softened the blow of not doing as well as I had hoped. What wasn’t any easier was hearing my Mum tell me that if I had put more effort in I would have done better and gotten my first choice course. However I believe everything happens for a reason and that I got the marks I deserved for the work I put in.

Besides there was enough crap going on in my life at that time that the mark I got was phenomenal considering.

So no I didn’t get into the course I wanted, but I did get into a course that shaped me as a person. Now I have a kick ass well paying job. No it wasn’t what I wanted to do then but it is what I want now. 

And I always have the choice to go back to college and be a teacher like I wanted and still have a good thirty year career out of it.

So just go with the flow, whichever offers you get, take advantage of it and look on the bright side, maybe it is meant to be.

I’m off to the launch of the Irish Blog Awards tomorrow. Stay tuned for posts on that and my Manchester trips this weekend!

I also want to just take a moment to reflect on the loss of Robin Williams. Whilst I never knew him he was a favourite of mine and was a strong figure as I grew up. I can only hope his soul is at peace and that the world remembers him not for his death but his work and life.

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