Review | My Cleanse Experience – Simple Green Smoothies

DISCLAIMER: This is my personal review of the Simple Green Smoothie Spring Cleanse aka Fresh Start Spring Cleanse 2017. Some of the words used here are from SGS to guide the cleansers (like me) write a personal experience on doing cleanse.

In My Own Words

I have been following Simple Green Smoothies since 2015 when I was looking for ways of improving my diet after having my second child and also introducing vegetables into my kid’s diets. After doing a few internet searches, I found Simple Green Smoothies. As much as they are based in the US and I live in England, that did not matter as I like how SIMPLE their recipes and guides to a healthy you are. It so happened that when I signed up for their newsletter, they were about to start their 30-Day Smoothie Challenge in October 2015 and I knew that would be the start of an interesting journey when it comes to healthy eating.

Well, that is a story for another day.

Fast forward to 2017, here I am looking for a way to get my healthy eating habits back on track and I get a newsletter from SGS about the Spring Cleanse. I have seen them do a cleanse pack before, but I was so reluctant to try as I was so busy with my studies, running a household and just trying to stay on top of things. Now that I have more or less finished my degree, I decided that the timing, although not perfect, was as good as any. So I took the plunge and signed up for the Fresh Start Spring Cleanse aka #FS21. The cleanse was a 21-Day programme from 3 – 23 April 2017, but you can still join the cleanse and start when you are ready. The disadvantage with that is that you will not be part of the Facebook Group that was created for the cleanse as it helps with getting support from other people trying the cleanse. My opinion would be to wait for the next cleanse as you would definitely benefit from having that moral support from other cleansers. The temptation to fall off the wagon is great and seeing that you are not the only one struggling when temptation rears its ugly head can be a relief.

So, for me, the best way to give my review of the cleanse was to do a video diary. Just me talking about how I feel whilst doing the cleanse, the recipes that I liked and didn’t like and the lessons I have learnt along the way.

Apologies for the long review. Also, some part of the edit the audio does not sync with the video and I could not fix it. So, for that, I am sorry! 🙈

Towards the end, I did the following as per SGS’s questions for the review:

The Intro – Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? (ex: where you live, family, job, kids, pets, passions, dream vacation, anything that excites you really )
My Hesitations – What hesitations did you have about buying Fresh Start?
Favourites from the Cleanse – What was your favourite part about the cleanse?
Recommendations – If you had a friend who’s not sure if they should do Fresh Start, what would you tell ’em?

In the words of Simple Green Smoothies

Fresh Start (spring) is a 21-day cleanse created by Simple Green Smoothies. This positive transformation program is for you IF…
• You’re ready to stop making excuses and take charge of your health.
• You want to feel energised, confident and well rested, so you can feel amazing in your body.
• You’re willing to skip highly processed ingredients and empty calorie meals.
• You believe health is a journey and you’re looking for a system that you can stick to without feeling deprived.
• You’re willing to invest a little extra time in the kitchen, knowing that healthy and nutritious meals take some extra lovin’ in the oven (no more “cooking is a chore” excuses).
• You’re excited to get out of your comfort zone (trying new foods, resisting temptations, giving up caffeine and alcohol).

Join the cleanse: http://simplegreensmoothies.com/cleanse

So, have you done a cleanse before or are you planning to? Please share your thoughts.

I hope you enjoy watching the vlog.

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#FreshStart21

Birthday Weekend in Paris

As some of you may know, May is my birth month.

This year, I decided that I would spend it in Paris.

So here is the thing, I am a fan of Rugby and particularly, Rugby 7s. So around my birthday, the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series final two legs (Paris and London 2017) happen in May right around my birthday. Last year, two things did not allow me to travel to Paris.

One – my visa expired the weekend before.

Two – I had deadlines.

So, I vowed to myself, that the following year, come rain or shine, I will find myself in Paris and here we are. A year later and I got to celebrate my birthday in Paris doing what I love most, travelling, photography and rugby.

This goes to show, with determination, you can make things happen.

Whenever I could, I documented my experience as a TWO-PART vlog for my YouTube channel.

Part One

Part Two

I hope you like it and if you do, please…

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#BirthdayMonth

I Still Cannot Believe It…

…I am an Art Programme finalist.

My latest vlog sees me attend an Intellectual Property Law Workshop at the Travers Smith LLC offices as part of the CSR Art Programme.

Last year, during the degree show, my “Women in Sports” project was selected to be part of the programme as it helps us, as students, to transition from studying to the real world. When it comes to creative degrees, there is a huge gap when it comes to learning/knowing your rights as an artist and how to run yourself as a business/brand. This is where the lucky few who are picked to be in the programme get to learn about from professionals on the field, while at the same time, have their artwork displayed in the offices for the academic year.

I hope you enjoy watching the vlog.

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#CSRArtProgrammeFinalist

How I Developed Black & White 35mm Film in a Darkroom

Apologies for the sound quality, esp. when showing the film developing time charts. 

Processing B&W film takes at least an hour and I did an InstaStories of the process that I uploaded on my Youtube Channel.

I shot an Ilford FP4 125 B&W film some time back and the roll of film had been living in my handbag for God knows how long and since I have limited access to a darkroom (that shall not be named), I decided to make the most of it.

Apparently, you are supposed to process film as soon as you finish photographing, but I have seen images from film rolls that have been processed several years or decades after they were shot and they look great. So, on that note, I went ahead and processed my roll.

Here is how I went about my process:

What’s in the box?

1x Film Developing Tank (Canister)
2x Film Spirals/Reel
1x Film Squeegee
1x Safety Goggles
1x Scissors
1x ‘C’ Clamp

Dry Side

Film Opener

Wet Side

Film developing chemicals
Water Bath
Wetting Agent

What Each Chemical Does

Developer – the clue is in the name really. In this particular darkroom, I am not sure which brand of chemical is being used as there are different kinds. All I know is that for 35mm film, in my case the FP4, I used 200ml worth of developer and mix it with 200ml of water – 1:1 ratio. And the developer I used cannot be used again. For my film, I had to agitate the chemical for 10mins. Hitting the tank on the side helps in removing air bubbles when developing the film. Inside any box of Ilford film, there are technical instructions which come in handy to help with the processing.

IMG_9247

Stop Bath – This is used to stop the film from developing further and is agitated for only a minute and the chemical can be reused until it becomes dead.

Fixer – This chemical stabilises the images on the film and is the final stage in processing the film.  You agitate it for at least 6mins, not forgetting to remove the air bubbles. The fixer can be used again.

Water – Used to rinse all the chemicals from the film and this takes the longest time at 15mins.

Wetting Agent – this helps prevent watermarks on the film when drying it. Very helpful especially in hard water areas like London.

Things I noticed whilst I was doing this:

1. The black stem inside the developing tank was upside down 😂
2. I should have gently moved the film reel in the water rinse
3. Goggles, gloves and an apron were available, but I didn’t use them. They should be worn for health & safety reasons really.

As you can see towards the end of my video, the lab technician was kind enough to show how the film is rolled onto the reel as this part is done in the dark and the two options of holding it down in the tank when only processing one roll. Which I failed to do 😱. I realised that without doing this, I could have ended up with a film that was not fully developed had the reel moved up the stem when I was agitating it with the developer. Lesson learnt!

And there you have it, that is how I develop Black and White film in a darkroom.

I only know of one place where you can process your own Black and White film and that is the Camera Club in London. You can only do this if you join to become a member and no, I have not been asked to say this.

Otherwise, you are left to drop off your film to any one of the few labs left around London, like Metro Imaging, Photofusion, BayeuxSnappy Snaps or Boots with the last two being on the budget end of film developing. Or, buy the kit needed from stores like Calumet or SilverPrint and do it at home.

I can’t wait to show you the photographs from this film.

Do you think Black and White film developing is something you would like to do?

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#darkroomfilmprocessing