Hope you all liked my chocolate truffle recipe – please do give it a go and remember to tag me in the results – either on Instagram or Twitter using @mariablackstone (as you can see I’m super original on the name front). Don’t forget to follow me either!

I can’t believe its been two weeks since I graduated, time has flown like my degree did and I thought I’d take this opportunity to tell you about it – what I did over the weekend and show you a few pictures! No recipe this week as I thought I’d talk about the lovely food I ate instead but I will post a recipe for you next week!

Thursday 10th September:

We travelled up on the Thursday morning, I had a doctor’s appointment in the morning then got my stuff together and headed to Lincoln. We arrived around 2pm and checked into the hotel. We were lucky enough to get a beautiful view of the river and were so lucky with the weather! Bright sunshine. Laura (my sister) was quite tired from the drive so we decided to chill out for a bit before heading down the the Starbucks in the hotel, sat outside and had a bite to eat and a drink. It was so lovely to simply sit and watch the world go by. We mustered up the energy to head into town and had a wonder around the shops – why does doing nothing make you so tired?!

I bought a new dress from Fat Face, as if this wasn’t an expensive enough weekend haha! But hey, why not treat myself… right? That’s what I’ll tell myself anyway. We headed back to the hotel and a caught up with good friend Sarah, who’s off to Malta soon for a graduate job… beyond proud and wishing her all the success. We went back to the hotel, got ready and went out to dinner.

I booked a table at Carluccio’s. I had the bruschetta to start – Italian bread topped with a mound of fresh tomato, some garlic and herbs. For main I had my favourite pasta dish – a vegetarian option; which is so unlike me as I always love meat dishes. It’s the pasta dish with courgette, garlic, chilli and fried cheesy spinach balls. I certainly wouldn’t be kissing anyone tonight haha! I have the recipe somewhere in the kitchen, and want to try my hand at making my own version – so one day on here you may see the result! We finished off the meal (greedy I know) with dessert… a berry tiramisu which was creamy but nice and refreshing after a big meal. I won’t lie I was eyeing up my mum, dad and sisters salted caramel sundae though!

We finished the night at the Hilton, in the Electric Bar,, which is just next door to the Holiday Inn we were staying at. This is something I had wanted to do during university but never had the chance. Which is crazy because I spent three years there but it’s amazing how much I didn’t experience but there’s always the opportunity to go back and explore. We had some cocktails and headed back to the hotel for a relatively early night as Friday was going to be a long day! A pornstar martini was my cocktail of choice.

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Friday 11th September

Got up at 6am, curled my hair – which in the end seemed like a pointless waste of time as it fell out before I had even managed to graduate but hey, you can’t blame a girl for trying. I got gowned up, had pictures taken and caught up with friends before heading into the cathedral for the ceremony. It was absolutely amazing. I hadn’t quite anticipated the length of the walk I had to do – heres me thinking I’d walk across the stage and it would be over. Little did I know I had to do a whole lap of the cathedral afterwards – struggled with this in my heels but I made the ceremony without falling over AND didn’t twist my ankles on the cobbles so I was winning all round. I felt such a sense of pride and achievement – especially at the end when we all got up and gave a round of applause. The atmosphere was amazing and I really had that ‘we did it’ moment. I don’t really remember much of the stage stuff, but that bit will stay with me forever.

We had a scone and jam after the obligatory throw your hat up in the air photo and after that I had a prize giving as I won the prize for Best Contemporary Lens Media student joint with Lucy Bick, my fellow course rep and friend. This was a nice small ceremony and it was nice to catch up with tutors after.

We ended the day with a meal at my favourite place the Horse & Groom. I had BBQ ribs – slightly regretted it as I was way too full and all I wanted to do was nap after. However, I left my parents and sister at this point and they had the journey home. I got back to the hotel and started to get ready for grad ball with my partner in crime Daisy. We met up with my housemates and had a few drinks before heading there. My feet were ruined and grad ball was a bit disappointing to be honest but I had a good time with my friends who I’ve spent the last few years of my life with and quite frankly I’m glad I didn’t spend it any other way!

Saturday, it was time to come home, after a big breakfast I chilled in my favourite cafe which I will miss dearly! How sad does that sound, but they do the best coffee, and the vibe is so chilled and lovely. It was then time to catch my train … bye bye Lincoln.

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Sorry for this rambley post, hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I did. Some of them are only my phone ones so please forgive me that they aren’t the best quality. It’s times like these where I think how on earth did I gain a First Class Honours in photography ha!

Next week I’ll post you a lovely recipe for you to try out. Not decided if it will be sweet or savoury yet, but it will be delicious regardless!

A girl with an appetite for all things creative,

Maria x

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