Just Another Monthly

Something to think about:

accomplishment ceremony education graduation

Once when I casually mentioned in passing my attendance at university, it was met with a scoffing dismissal “Pah, I went to the University of Life, mate. No amount of education can teach you that”. True, BUT…..This wasn’t the first time me being a graduate has been criticised and met with an assumption that I know less about life because of going to university. It begs the question, do people who do this, think people stop living and experiencing life when they attend university? Like many students, I held down a part-time job during term time and worked full-time during the holidays as well as -of course- studying full-time. I met and lived with people from all different backgrounds. And I worked my tiny derriere off to obtain my degree (unlike the lazy stereotype that all students are lackadaisical). None of this is “not learning about life”. Also, university is for only 3 years (4/5 years max) of one’s life. If it truly does take you away from learning about life, it really is only for a small amount of time. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t by any means think that going to university is a superior life choice. I’m not some kind of arsehole that walks around thinking they’re better than anyone that hasn’t been to university. And of course, being or not being a graduate is not an indicator of someone’s intelligence. I knew plenty of people at uni, who I would squint at and wonder how on earth they managed to get into university and there are countless people I know who are very clever and successful, but did not attend uni (my husband being one of them). There are many life choices people can make and university is just one of many. So here’s the thing, why is it ok for some people to openly criticise my life choice of going to uni? And to criticise it in a way that demeaning my character seems to be the motivation. I give very little fucks whether you’ve been to uni or not. Why do you give any that I have? We’re all different and all make different choices about our lives. Just because something is the right choice for you, doesn’t mean that it is for everyone. Relax. Like I said, I really don’t think people care what your choices are regarding your education (and if they do- they aren’t worth worrying about). Literally, all people care about is whether you’re a wanker or not. And insinuating that I know less about life than you do because I studied for an extra 3 years than you, is you know…a bit wankerish.

Something to be cheerful about:

It ain’t all going to shit you know. In this week’s news:

  • sandwich chain Pret A Manger has opened a new hostel this week that will provide jobs and housing for the city’s homeless. I worked for Pret for several years and can vouch that they have always cared for the homeless. In its infancy, any left over sandwiches would be bagged up and taken to local shelters. Nothing would go to waste. Pret hopes this hostel will be the first of many to open across the country. What a great idea to break the cycle of homelessness.
  • scientists have said the ozone layer is continuing to recover well. The northern hemisphere is due to be repaired by 2030 and the entire layer by 2060. This is due to global reduction of harmful gases. Great news, but drastic action is still needed to help further protect the planet from climate change.
  • goat yoga is a thing of the past. In England, you can now do Alpaca yoga. Yep, in sunny Devon you can now do yoga classes in a field of fuzzy alpacas and mediate amongst the herd in a mindful manner. Sign me up!

photo of a llama


Something to buy:


Gingham flower dress, £85, Coco Fennell


Please Go Away clutch bag, £25, from I Love Mel

Something to read:


Whether you have depression, have suffered from it in past, know someone who is suffering from it or just want to learn more about it (and life), then please stop and read this book. Beautifully written by Matt Haig, who relays his own personal experiences with depression and anxiety. It will make you laugh and cry in equal measures. One of those books that you feel everyone should be made to read.

Something to watch:


Roma won the BAFTA for Best Film this week (and Best Film not in the English Language, Best Cinematography and Best Director). I absolutely adored this film. Honest, moving, sweet, artistic and at times funny. After I watched it, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Whilst, I’m still not 100% sure it should have won the Best Film category, it was most definitely worthy of the other three wins. You can watch it now on Netflix and if you’re a fan of films like this, then I guarantee you’ll love Roma.

Something to cook:

Chocolate Raspberry Heart Cake

Has it been Valentine’s Day this week? Well as you know, I’m not one for romance (you can read about it HERE), but I do like any excuse to bake. So, every year (if I can be bothered), I make this chocolate raspberry heart cake originally created by Annabel Karmel and slightly amended by me.


A not very good (and old school Instagrammed) photo of my chocolate raspberry heart cake


180g soft butter

180g caster sugar

180g self-raising flour

30g cocoa powder

3 large eggs

2 tbsp milk


200ml double cream

Fresh raspberries


100g dark chocolate

30g unsalted butter

Raspberry jam


  1. Preheat oven to 160/180/gas mark 4. Grease and line the bottom of a heart shaped tin (or whatever cake tins you might have at hand. I got my silicone heart shaped tin from good ole M&S)
  2. Chuck all the cake ingredients together. Take Mary Berry’s advice and make sure everything is at room temperature. If your butter is still hard and cold- melt it in the microwave for a few seconds. Give everything a jolly good mix.
  3. Whack it in the tin and bake it in the oven for 35-40mins. Take the tin out and leave for a couple of minutes. Then take the cake carefully out of the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  4. Now, let’s make the icing. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a heatproof bowl over the pan of simmering water. Then leave to cool.
  5. Next, the filling. Whisk the cream until stiff. Mix with a good handful of the raspberries.
  6. Once the cake is cooled. Carefully, oh so very carefully slice in half. Then slather a bit of raspberry jam on the bottom half. Then dollop the cream filling on top. Then place the top half on and carefully press down.
  7. Slather more raspberry jam on the top half.
  8. Once the icing is cool. Paste it on top of the cake and around the sides (if you like or leave the sides “naked” if you prefer that look).
  9. Cover the top of the cake with the rest of the fresh raspberries.
  10. Stuff it into your face and enjoy every mouthful.
  11. Sharing this cake with your partner is not compulsory.

Something to help save the planet with:


Beeswax Wraps kids pack of 4

Beeswax Wraps: Every little helps, eh? These little gems have been fantastic. I literally haven’t used any cling film since I bought them (coupled with silicone lids I also invested in). These beeswax wraps cling to food, just like cling film. I use them to wrap sandwiches, snacks, cheese, halved veg and there’s probably lots of other ways you can use them too. You just clean them along with all the rest of your washing up and when you have used them so many times, you can no longer use them any more, they are compostable. I’ve had mine for 6 months and there’s plenty of life left in them. Buy them HERE.

Something to enjoy from the Blogosphere:

Go have a read of this blog post HERE. It is one to cheer you all up. Features a mum who is now my role model quite frankly.


Seriously, don’t mess with her.

Something to listen to:

Just Another Playlist #1- A weekly mix tape of an eclectic collection of tunes (maybe to listen to while you make the cake)

Something to laugh at:

  • Look no further than the SimonCowellsShoes.jpg Twitter account HERE. I am so thankful for this account. It is exactly what the internet is for.
  • And lastly, these french bull dogs with googly eyes are EVERYTHING:

***Don’t forget you can sign up to receive this monthly newsletter straight into your mailbox. Just click the little “Follow” box at the bottom, right hand side of the screen and enter your email address***

See you next week for the top Björk tunes (and Just Another Monthly will be back in a month’s time)!



  1. TanGental · February 15, 2019

    Hayley you have made my day. Beeswaax wraps. Who knew. I’ve despaired about bloody cling film for ages. And here is the solution
    My kids will want to beatify you after i give them a pack.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

      Ha excellent! Honestly, they’ve been so great. I’m literally telling EVERYONE about them.


  2. angelanoelauthor · February 15, 2019

    I love the first edition of the “Monthly!” That dress is super cute. I wish I could use the word “wanker.” It’s such a good one but I think I’d get a lot of funny looks out here-except from my husband who has become a real fan of Liverpool’s Reds.

    Liked by 2 people

    • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

      Thanks Angela! Oh please do use the word wanker. It is sometimes the only way to describe some people ha! I wonder what your fellow Americans would think if you started regularly using it! Ooh your husband is a Liverpool fan- very good.

      Liked by 1 person

      • angelanoelauthor · February 16, 2019

        So, for example–I recently added a little question to my FB page (in honor of a friend who just lost her dog to lymphoma) to tell me a story about a favorite pet. And someone shared a story about a dog who’d been thrown out of of the back of a truck–but rescued and ultimately loved. So here’s my question: would the person that threw the dog out of the car be a wanker? Is it harsh enough for that kind of thing?
        Or is a wanker more like the fellow who was trying to be nice but essentially called me “old” when he said I “was doing a really good job for someone my age”?
        Or both?

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · February 17, 2019

        These are very good and very important questions. So, I would say if the f-word preceded “wanker”, then it *might* be harsh enough. However, I would say generally “wanker” is used to describe a work colleague who tried to make you look like a fool in a really important meeting after you gave a presentation that you’d worked really hard at. Or “wanker” is perfect to describe really bad drivers who do very stupid things on the road. As the U.K. are a nation of animal lovers (we generally prefer animals to humans), I think the harshest of insults would be reserved for what you described. But you could use “f-word wanker” yes.

        Liked by 2 people

      • angelanoelauthor · February 18, 2019

        Good to know! I feel like I “get” wanker now!


      • josypheen · February 19, 2019

        This is a great discussion about wankers. If someone threw a dog out the back of a car, they’d be a total utter wanker. Wanker on it’s own doesn’t seem strong enough to me…

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · February 19, 2019



  3. gigglingfattie · February 15, 2019

    Education is viewed differently here in Canada. University is a 4 year program, mine took 5 plus the summers because I didn’t adjust well haha! But if you don’t go to university then you are looked down upon. My best friend went to college to be a nurse. If you want to be a doctor you go to university, a nurse college. She is excellent at what she does. But because she went to college and not university then there is this stigma attached to her education that it’s not on par with someone who went to university. It’s really sad how judgemental people can be over such a trivial thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

      That is SO snobby. There is that slightly over here, but maybe not to such a degree (no pun intended) as Canada. Certain groups may judge you for what university you went to or even if you didn’t go to one, but I think most people over here don’t judge. Or at least I like to think they don’t.

      Liked by 1 person

      • gigglingfattie · February 15, 2019

        It’s really bad here and I’m not exactly sure why. Like some things require a hands on education(college) and some are more book based (university). I had a friend in my first few years of university that would not under any circumstances date anyone in college. She thought it below her. How horrible is that?!?

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

        That is awful. And incredibly short-sighted. You’d think people wouldn’t still think like that, but…

        Liked by 1 person

      • gigglingfattie · February 15, 2019

        Yeah exactly

        Liked by 1 person

  4. fattymccupcakes · February 15, 2019

    OK, this is freaking fantastic and not just because that’s my mama!! ❤️❤️

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this new feature!!

    I think people who scoff at university graduates are jealous, end of story. Saying you went to the “University of Hardknocks” roughly translates to “I Wish I Went to University, But I Fucked Around in School and Didn’t Attend/I Thought I Was Better Than University People, So Now I Need to Belittle the Life Choice I Wish I Had Made”.


    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

      So true. Why can’t peole just be comfortable with whatever life choices they make. It really doesn’t reflect on them! Thanks love! Thanks for letting me share your Mama! 😍

      Liked by 1 person

      • fattymccupcakes · February 15, 2019

        Of course!! Thank YOU!

        Liked by 1 person

      • josypheen · February 19, 2019

        This was my first thought too. I think some folks that didn’t go to uni feel uncomfortable around those that have, because they are worried *you* might look down on *them*… So they get defensive and bitchy.

        It’s even more crazy now. I mean, a degree is soooo expensive. Anyone that can make a fun life for themselves without all that debt is doing amazingly! You’d have to be a total knob to look down on someone for their education level!

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · February 19, 2019

        Exactly. When very few people would actually care whether they went to uni or not. It’s weird. Why do you care what people think? Just be you, girl. And yes one would have to be a right knobber to look down on someone if they haven’t been to uni.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. willowdot21 · February 15, 2019

    Love this Monthly but that any I ever had! ( Sorry couldn’t resist that …okay childish I know) great info. Love the Beeswax wraps!
    All great fun, I need a rest now after reading it 💜💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ritu · February 15, 2019

    Loving your monthly newsletter type post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Suzanne · February 15, 2019

    Brilliant Hayley, fun and informative!! Many entrepreneurs failed the schooling system! Ozone layer is a big issue down here in NZ and wax wraps have been popular here for years. There are obviously more hippies down here says she an ex-hippie 😊 Wanker is used with much enthusiasm and on a regular basis in kiwiland. Especially while driving!!
    Have a good night Hayleyx

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · February 15, 2019

      Thank you so much, Suzanne! You have no idea how happy it make me that “wanker” is regularly used over in NZ. I always knew you were an articulate bunch. Have a good weekend! X

      Liked by 1 person

      • Suzanne · February 16, 2019

        Lol @articulate bunch. Though only a few use it regularly to be fair and all to my country counterparts 😊X

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m checking out those bees wax things. Cling film is my nemesis I just can’t bloody use it properly I get in such a mess that I just give up and use tin foil instead! That hostel idea sounds great by Pret and yes totally agree I hope it;s the first of many.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. samfiftysomething · February 18, 2019

    Love this post Hayley! So much great info. Alpaca Yoga 😂 and love the idea of the Beeswax wraps!! I Hate Clingfilm! Awesome

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · February 18, 2019

      Thanks Sam! Those beeswax wraps are fantastic. And yep, I totally want to do Alpaca yoga! 🦙

      Liked by 1 person

      • josypheen · February 19, 2019

        Do you ever watch Russel Howard? He did goat yoga a few weeks ago, and it was pretty hilarious. They were cute little dudes, but they kept peeing on the yoga mats!

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · February 19, 2019

        I don’t often no, but ha I can imagine it was funny. I’m rather fond of goats. Peeing all over the place ‘n’ all.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: My 10 Most Popular Posts from 2019 | Just Another Blog From a Woman

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