Semaj’s Organic Dried Sorrel review | Champagne Twist

Hello,

Caribbean food month, August 2018, Champagne Twist

Traditionally enjoyed over the Christmas season in the West Indies, sorrel, fresh homemade sorrel that is, is a wonderful surprisingly fruity, spiced drink that is as refreshing as it is pretty in colour. Fill a glass with ice, pour the drink in, sit back and enjoy.

Sorrel drink | Champagne Twist

Which is why Semaj’s DIY pack version is such a disappointment.  Firstly, the substitution of whole cloves, an essential ingredient in for sorrel, with fennel seeds is inexcusable. If you can’t trust the ingredients list printed on the packaging, it will be difficult to trust the end product. Fennel seeds also tend to be cheaper than cloves, so it also makes me question the ‘value’ of the value pack.

That said, the product was easy to make, and adding cloves from my own spice cupboard, as well as other flavours made a difference. But having to source the spices defeats the object of buying this product.

Organic Dried Sorrel Semaj | Champagne Twist

As a quick introduction to sorrel, this drink had potential as a mixer. However as a stand-alone product, especially with the errors in the ingredients list, this drink cannot be described as authentic and in no way compares favourably with the real sorrel drink.

Rating 1 out of 5

 

 

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Just V Show / Love Natural, Love You Show – Day 1|Champagne Twist

Allergy and Free From Show / Just V Show / Love Natural, Love You Show / Eat Smart Show|Champagne Twist

Day 1 – Friday 6th July 2018

 

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Allergy and Free From Show / Just v Show / Love Natural, Love You Show / Eat Smart Show – Champagne Twist

 

With 4 shows under 1 roof, Olympia is the place to be if you’re a foodie.

 

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B Free stall, Allergy and Free From Show, Olympia, Kensington, London | Champagne Twist

 

Last year I felt overwhelmed by the vast number of stalls, the bags of free food, the number of talks and demos.  So this year I planned ahead.  I downloaded the show map, exhibitor list, and timetables yesterday, studied which talks I wanted to attend and the quickest routes to take to get from 1 talk to another.

 

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Good To Bee stall, Allergy and Free From Show, Olympia, Kensington, London | Champagne Twist

 

Friday, I’m guessing, is the least busiest day, due to work and school commitments,  and major events such as Wimbledon, Grand Prix, World Cup and Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.  Plus, with this unusually prolonged summer heat wave, where we actually have sunshine and the associated hosepipe bans to contend with, who wants to be cooped up in a huge building contending with massive crowds?

I also noticed this year that more people have followed my lead and brought their trolleys, suitcases and wheelie bags. I’m such a trend setter!

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Personally, I find it funny that I have attended a health show and purchased various chocolate puddings and cakes, with plans to purchase more. But I do this for 2 important reasons – 1, to review the produce purchased and in the case Freaks of Nature puds, to stock up.

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Freaks of Nature Puds, show offer sign, Allergy and Free From Show, Olympia, Kensington, London | Champagne Twist

I’m going again tomorrow and on the final day of the 3-day event – which I didn’t manage to do last year, mostly because I found the whole event overwhelming.

But not this year. I have a plan!

More to follow.

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Champagne Twist On Vacation: Barbados Series Preview​ now Live!

It’s finally here, the series preview of my new travel series.

The new series, Champagne Twist On Vacation: Barbados starts news week. There will be reviews, blog and vlog posts, travel guides and tips and so much more.

It all starts next week, so subscribe and make sure you don’t miss out!

On Vacation​ – New Travel​ Series: Country Reveal | Champagne Twist

Hello,

So excited to finally reveal which country I visited. Take a look at the video below to find out. Did you guess correctly?

Also, the series preview will be posted on Tuesday followed by a weekly video series, featuring travel hints and tips, food, culture, history and a little adventure thrown in.  Stay tuned to find out more.

Champagne Twist: On Vacation – New Travel​ Series – Coming Soon

pexels-photo-297755.jpeg

Hello,

It’s been a while since I posted, but there was a reason. A good reason.  I had been given the opportunity to do a little traveling and I thought I would blog about it.  The location will be revealed soon, but here are a few promo videos to give you a taste of what is to come.

A brand new YouTube series with corresponding blog posts will be published soon, so please stay tuned to make sure you don’t miss out.

 

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Wednesday Thinking The Mid-week Editorialv

Wednesday Thinking: Does social media encourage diversity or promote white privilege? | ChampagneTwist.com

Wednesday Thinking The Mid-week Editorialv
Wednesday Thinking The Mid-week Editorial

As August draws to a close, the topic which has stood out for me this month is diversity – or rather the lack of it, within the social media genre.

A vlog with too much talk

At the beginning of this month, I received an alert from one of my favourite social media creators Kristabel Plummer of I want you to know fame, over on Instagram stories. She had received a comment her on one of her vlogs which inferred she had an issue with her YouTube channel.

I immediately headed over to Kristabel’s YT channel to watch the vlog and then read the comment in context.  Here’s the vlog –

Below is a transcript of the comment from Lilly C –

Got this suggested. You’re lovely but you talk too much for my liking..not to take this as a negative, but personally I enjoy more vlogging and less talking. And your travel partner looked lovely

Confused as to how it’s possible for anyone can talk too much on a vlog, let alone one of the best UK vloggers on YouTube,  I read and reread the comment. Then it clicked. This was not intended to be a fair and reasoned critique, rather a passive aggressive attack and veiled attempt to silence a popular YouTube voice.

It appears that Lilly C is a dummy YouTube channel – which in itself is OK, and personally I have no issue with. But not if the idea of this possible holding account is to deliberately cast shade within the safety of anonymity.

 

 

After much thought, I decided that I couldn’t let that comment go without a response from me …

Lilly, your comment appears as a worrying attempt to ‘silence’ a popular and gifted vlogger, as opposed to a fair and sincere critique. Sade I agree looked lovely, as does Kristabel I’m sure you will agree. But their looks, with the highest respect to Kristabel and Sade, are not the subject matter of this particular vlog. Why focus on their ‘looks’, without one mention of the actual topic of the vlog?

The answer of course is because Lilly’s motives were not entirely honourable. Either that or the Lilly is a victim of this incessant need to place beauty at a higher value than the content of a a person’s character. And yes, I am challenging Dr. Martin Luther King. Now he was a person who talked a lot … a lot of sense which still inspires and comforts millions of people today.

But is there more to this?

Hello World, Goodbye Diversity

Hello World – is a social media event which is due to take place in Birmingham, England in October. Here’s the tag statement –

HelloWorld is an epic four hour, immersive live show like nothing on Earth. Two identical performances on the 28th and 29th October at the Birmingham Genting Arena, bring the world’s biggest Social talent and you together under one roof for an unforgettable, shared experience.

Just a quick glance at the list of announced talent, highlights the complete and total lack of diversity across the board, of an event called “Hello WORLD!”. The version of the world as promoted by the event, doesn’t seem a million miles away from the world a mad man once imagined, which of course was one of the major causes of the outbreak of World War Two.

With so many talented bloggers from all walks of life, faiths, religions, sexual preferences, genders, etc, and in such a diverse city as Birmingham, arguably the most diverse city in the UK second to only London, it is difficult to create a convincing argument as to why the talent is so white, male, heterosexual, middle-class, able bodied, with an average age range below 30 and from bloggers mostly from the world of beauty and fashion.

When our collective attention is being directed towards such a narrow field of talent, representing such few fields and even less voices, it is no wonder that in 2017 we still fighting for equality?

If, in the era of globalisation, social media influencers and power houses can’t manage to organise a truly diverse social media event, with all the technology at our disposal, then we are all in more trouble than we think.

Dreams of a White Christmas

Many of the UK’s most celebrated social media talents also tend to have 1 thing in common – the support of an agency. At the risk of mentioning the C word when we’re still enjoying Summer, last Christmas a number of famous UK bloggers, who are represented  by Gleam Futures, were treated to a pre-Christmas bash hosted by the agency. Here’s a video highlight from one of Jim Chapman’s YouTube channels, who is represented by Gleam.

From the huge number of bloggers, vloggers and staff at the venue, how many people of colour did you see?

Again, where is the diversity? How come a British, London based agency have so obviously failed to include a diverse range of social talent? How is that even possible? While we the audience are distracted by all the fun and jollies of the Christmas party trying to spot our favourite bloggers and vloggers, the subtle yet very loud message we are simultaneously receiving is that diversity is not a priority at this, or any other social media gathering. If people are being excluded from the party, how can we ever hope to create an inclusive social media network?

 

The irony of the title of Jim’s video is sadly all too apparent.

Note, many of the social media talents announced for the “Hello World” event are represented by Gleam Futures, including of course Jim Chapman. Dipping from a shallow pool of talent, will result in lack of inclusiveness.

What do you think? Is social media an accurate reflection of society, or a subtle  promoter of far right ideals? Please comment below.

Thanks for reading.

The C.T. Show, June favourites YouTube channel cover - ChampagneTwist.com

New Episode of the C.T. Show, now live

Yes, we are a little late this month … but June was so jammed packed it was hard to choose which would make the final edit. Now that the techno stuff is also on the mend, the video backlog will soon be cleared, so watch out for even more.

Don’t forget to subscribe, like, click the bell icon for notifications and tell your friends!

Thanks for watching.

How to make a mini travel sewing kit

spring clean - march

As part of this month’s Spring Clean theme, I am posting related articles to help with every day tasks and organisation. Today’s post is about creating a mini travel sewing kit for sartorial emergencies.

Whether you sew or not, it’s a good idea to carry a sewing kit in case you lose a button or a hem unravels. Here’s how I made my mine:

  1. 3 needles, 2 ready threaded
  2. small scissors or snips
  3. spare shirt buttons
  4. thread bobbin, with about 5 different coloured threads
  5. safety pins, in various sizes

Plus, a small container to hold the above items, such as an old sweet tin.

mini travel sewing kit | champagne twist

Needles –

sewing needles | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

Place 3 needles on a small fabric scrap. Thread 2 with white and black threads, leaving one spare. This will help save time in case you’re in a hurry.

 

Small scissors –

scissors | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

If you have one from last year’s Christmas cracker, this is where it becomes useful. If not, raid your sewing kit or consider purchasing a pair.

Spare buttons –

white shirt buttons | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

You could make a small paper envelope to store spare buttons, but I just usually keep 2 or 3 loose in the tin.

Thread bobbin –

thread bobbin card | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

Wrap different coloured threads around a small piece of cardboard. The colours I use reflect the colour of the clothes I usually wear. Adapt the thread colours according to your daily wardrobe.  Add extra black and white thread, as these tend to be the most useful.

Safety pins –

safety pins | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

These are quick to use, if you don’t have time to do a temporary repair. I used a piece of ribbon to store my pins together, but you could use a small envelope, pin them on a fabric scrap or simply pin them together.

 

 

mini travel sewing kit | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

Add the above 5 items in a box or tin, place in your every day travel bag*, and you will never be caught with a lost button or unraveled hem again.

*Note, if you’re travelling by air, chances are you will not be permitted to fly with sharp objects such as scissors. Check with your carrier before you add your sewing kit to your hand luggage.

mini travel sewing kit | champagne twist - champagnetwist.wordpress.com

I hope you found this article useful, please comment below and add your suggestions. Do you carry a sewing kit? What’s in yours?

Don’t forget to subscribe for more tips and tricks. Thanks for reading.