ConGRADulations!!

*waves arms around madly*

Long time, no see! And in the time I’ve been absent from my blog, I have managed to graduate from Victoria University of Wellington with a Bachelor of Arts (in English Literature and Philosophy, if anyone is curious!)

YAY I DID IT. xD

Survived all the late nights/early mornings (when things were really desperate!), the bajillion hours spent reading, the crazy first year Halls antics, the essay writing, getting involved in all the fun, extra activities that Vic runs, the even crazier things we got up to in first year (*cough*), the flatting experience, the 9am tutorials that no one ever turns up for, getting lost on campus (more than once!), the lecturers that you just can’t stand, the lecturers that you admire/fangirl over (guilty… *winks*), the awesome people I’ve met and the brilliant friends I’ve made…

The Time. Of. My. Life!

Thanks to everyone who was a part of it – you all had a special role to play, and I won’t ever forget it ๐Ÿ™‚

Now, time for some photos!

Me with my proud grandparents ๐Ÿ™‚

Mum and I (in matching pink! :D)

It’s my brother! ๐Ÿ˜€ (SO MUCH TALLER. I look ridiculous. xD)

One, Two, Three! ๐Ÿ˜€

And now, look what my darling mother made! Graduation Cupcakes. Wheeeeeee! With light pink icing to match my BA hood.

*drools*

They were delish. All gone now, sorry ๐Ÿ˜‰ My favourite was the one with the white trencher decoration!

And so, that was my graduation ceremony! It was such an exciting night, being able to celebrate with people I’d studied alongside for three years – clapping extra hard when it was their turn on the stage, of course! And thankfully, when it was my turn onstage, I managed a feat of a lifetime and didn’t do anything clumsy like trip over, or do an awkward handshake, hooray! (I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I moved with grace, because my Mum took a video of me walking across the stage, and I look like a hunchbacked troll slumping my way to my diploma, hahaaaa.) Oh, actually – I just remembered. I did the eyebrow raise greeting at the Vice Chancellor. *meep*

I shall leave you with my “Superman” photo, a pose which I simply *couldn’t* resist, what with the “cape” and everything!

Supergrad! ๐Ÿ˜€

Have fun!
Bri xx

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Fun With A Chelsea Cupcake Masterclass!

*wipes forehead*

What a weekend of fun I’ve just had! After being lucky enough to go to Elton John’s concert in Dunedin on Friday night (blog post coming this week), I was then also lucky enough to get to go to Auckland on Sunday, for an afternoon Cupcake Masterclass run by Chelsea Sugar! My Mum (of course!) had won two spots at the Masterclass for us both. We got flown up to Auckland by Chelsea Sugar and everything – I felt like such a VIP, what with having our taxi paid for (and I’m glad it was, the taxi fare from Auckland Airport to Parnell is not pretty!) and arriving to a wonderful gluten-free lunch made especially for me and my Mum, with THE nicest caramel/chocolate slice ever! Om nom! We were given a brilliant goodie bag, filled with baking treats from Chelsea, a cupcake cookbook, and a lovely apron, as modelled by moi above ๐Ÿ˜‰

The Cupcake Masterclass itself was run by Milly’s Kitchen, and so we were treated to amazingly skilled instructors. We were given a heap of epic skills to create our masterpieces… and so, I thought I’d share my cupcakes with you guys! ๐Ÿ™‚

So, first up was the Lemon Cupcakes (which I’m holding in the first photo). The different elements were…

  • lemon curd filling, which we punched inside the cupcakes with a nozzle (no scooping out the cupcake, wheee!)
  • a lemon cream cheese icing made using the yummy Chelsea Lemon Flavoured Icing Sugar
  • the fondant flower decorations…

…which were incredibly fun to make! First off, we used a leaf cutter to make the leaves.

The ones on the left are Mum’s, the ones on the right are mine. That white instrument you can see in the background was what we used to mark the veins on the leaves ๐Ÿ™‚

Next came the actual rose! This was one of my favourite parts of the class ๐Ÿ˜€

The top ones are my roses, and the bottom ones are Mum’s roses. Hehee, as you can see, mine are rather less elegant! My second attempt (right) *was* much better though, and I don’t mind if they don’t look exactly like roses… I don’t actually know that much about real roses vs other real flowers, so… ๐Ÿ˜›

Now, to put them all together! – and, we couldn’t forget the BLING! (ie. edible glitter, wheeeeee!)

Next up… Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes. These had…

For the chocolate filigree, we had to pipe out melted chocolate from a piping bag made from baking paper. It was… an interesting experience, that’s for sure! ๐Ÿ˜€ I learnt that laughing while piping does not make for the most even of lines. However, at least I wasn’t quite as unco as my dear mother, who went through THREE piping bags because hers kept spilling out over the top, or escaping all over the fine nozzle we had. *giggles* ‘Twas very amusing. Here were my chocolate patterns:

As you can see, I had a bit of fun with my own designs too. Heheee. After they’d set, all that was left to do was put them on the cupcakes! (and BLING it up. Big Time! :D)

Somewhere amongst the mass of chocolate, there is a “L” on the left cupcake, and a “B.J” on the right cupcake. That means that the left one is for my darling brother, and the right one is for me ๐Ÿ˜€ Om nom. Virtual cookies (or, should I say, cupcakes!) if you can spot them!

Which leaves only… Raspberry and Vanilla Cupcakes. These consisted of…

  • berry glace icing made from the YUMMY Chelsea Pink Berry Flavoured Icing Sugar. This is my personal fav of the Chelsea Icing Sugars, because it is amazing to watch the white powder turn pink when you mix it! AND when you open the bag, your nose is happily assaulted with the smell of pink marshmellows. *drools*
  • sugared flowers

To make the flowers, we just brushed edible flower petals (we used roses) with the tiniest amount of egg-white, and then coated them lightly in sugar, and left them to dry. That was a novelty for me, because I honestly had no idea you could eat flower petals! *pokes out tongue*

The end result (with the most BLING of them all!):

And so ended our afternoon of fun! And honestly, it was fun in the true sense of the word – silly, crazy, unadulterated and creative, with no rights or wrongs. I don’t think I spend enough time having this kind of fun, so it was good to be reminded of how good it feels ๐Ÿ™‚ So, thanks Chelsea Sugar and Milly’s Kitchen! *squeeeee!*

I almost don’t believe that *I* made those! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Now, time to eat them… *beams*

Have fun!
Bri xx

Welsh Pride & Some Epic Rugby!

Squeeeeee!

Last night was the Wales vs. South Africa RWC game that I was lucky enough to get tickets for, and WOW – talk about an amazing experience!

My darling friends and I started out the evening with a good ol’ fashioned Kiwi dinner beforehand – fish ‘n’ chips! (or, in Kiwi dialect, “fush ‘n’ chups”) ๐Ÿ˜‰ It was windy, and raining – the Welsh would have felt right at home! – so we sat outside the supermarket for shelter. I’m sure we looked incredibly homeless, but this was made up for by the numerous longing looks we received from passers-by, because of the yummy smell of our food ๐Ÿ˜€

And then… the trek to ‘Wellington Regional Stadium’ began! (it’s usually called ‘Westpac Stadium’, but the RWC are rather strict about what brands are associated with the tournament – lucky it will always be known as the ‘Cake Tin’ to us Kiwis!) This was incredibly fun, especially when we reached the train station, as there were a bajillion fans making their way to the match.ย  We even passed a group of four musicians playing the Welsh National Anthem ๐Ÿ˜‰ When we came across this guy, we just HAD to have a photo with him…

Such an epic hat!

Anyways, we merged into the massive crowd heading into the stadium, arriving early enough to mess around taking valuable pictures… ๐Ÿ˜€

Don’t I look truly Welsh ? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Moving on… the actual rugby game! ๐Ÿ˜€

And what an amazing game it was! To be honest, deep down in my heart I was afraid it would be a bit one sided – after all, Wales have only beaten South Africa once before, and drawn once too. BUT GOSH was this a brilliant display of rugby! The Welsh were really onto it, they played so well!! South Africa, quite frankly, sucked ๐Ÿ˜› The crowd was really great too – I think most were actually supporting Wales, probably because all of the ‘neutral’ Kiwis naturally love underdogs, and are probably still sore about South Africa recently beating the All Blacks, hahaaa. Although there were many South African flags flying! Had some fun with chants – not the most original… “Waaaaales, Waaaaales!” – and also some Mexican Waves.

This last one is a tad blurry, but I simply MUST include it because… when I was taking it, I half-jokingly/half-optimistically said “This is Wales getting their first try!” And blow me down, 2 seconds later they crossed the line!! ๐Ÿ˜€ I went absolutely mental, brilliant! This put Wales in the lead, which they were able to hold onto right until the final 10mins or so… when unluckily, South Africa scored, and rounded the final score off at 17-16.

One point of controversy is the hideous fact that the (excuse my French) wanker referee Wayne Barnes made a fairly bad call regarding one of the Welsh penalty kicks. If you watch the video that TVNZ have on their article, you can see that the ball clearly curves in, to slot between the posts, and so should definitely have been given! BUT no. As well as just being a crap ref, I reckon Barnes was a bit nervous being in New Zealand, after his 2007 RWC balls up… *sighs* ๐Ÿ˜›

Anyway, a great time was had by all! ๐Ÿ™‚ All that remains now is to thank my AWESOME Mum, again – don’t think I can thank her enough actually! Wish she could have been there too, but we all had fun anyways! I now have an extremely serious case of RWC fever ๐Ÿ˜‰

Even though Wales lost, I’m still super proud of them for showing such strength, and giving the South Africans a serious run for their money! Wales is definitely my ‘adopted’ second team, and I shall be rooting for them in their other Pool (of) D(eath) matches!

Have fun!
Bri xx

PROPER Snow in Wellington!

That’s right.

Yesterday’s snow? Pffft. Pales in comparison to today!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Apparently this is the first time it’s snowed this heavily for over 30 years in Wellington!

Very exciting times indeed!

The snow hit literally just after my class ended, so me and my friend walked back home giggling hysterically the entire way. Total loss of dignity – bahh, what’s new? ๐Ÿ˜‰ The walk home usually takes 10 minutes, tops – but it honestly took us around 25 minutes, as I kept stopping to madly click away on my camera, and to try and catch some flakes on our tongues – snow tastes delicious! – and we were just having too much fun… squeeeee!

So, here’s another onslaught of photos for you to enjoy! ๐Ÿ˜€

Before the snow began – it was sunny, but there was still snow left on cars (which had come to the city from the more blanketed snowy suburbs!)

Uni cat! ๐Ÿ˜€ This cat just down the street from university, and is often sitting outside, waiting to get attention from students walking to class. This time, he’s trying to avoid the snow!! So cuuuute. The snow had only just started at this point, sure hope he found a nice warm place to curl up ๐Ÿ™‚

Snow everywhere!

So pretty!

Snow falling outside my flat!

Wheeeeeee!! ME IN SNOWFALL! ๐Ÿ˜€ (my first time!)

*giggle* That was fun ๐Ÿ˜€

My normal 30 Day Challenge post shall be on its way later today ๐Ÿ™‚

Have fun!
Bri xx

Snowing in Wellington!

ACTUALLY SNOWING. IN WELLINGTON.

Yes, this does require the excessive use of capitals ๐Ÿ˜‰ It very very rarely snows in Wellington – and especially not in the city centre, where I live, so this was just magic! Sadly, it didn’t really settle, as it was raining too much… but still, had fun with my flatmates out on our balcony, getting freezing (bare!) feet and soaking wet hair, catching the snow on our hands and tongues ๐Ÿ™‚

…and taking photos, as proof!

Apparently it’s hard to photograph falling snow – well, with only an average camera – but I gave it my darnedest! Don’t think they came out too badly… just don’t zoom in, you’ll be blinded by the pixelation ๐Ÿ˜€

Snoooow and traffic liiiiights!

Look at that!

Feels like winter!

Wheeee!

Well then! That was fun, indeed. It’s stopped now, but I’m crossing my fingers for more tomorrow. Maybe we’ll get a day off uni…?

…I can dream, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Have fun!
Bri xx