Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Week 45

Lots of food and crafting!

5th - 12th November

From left to right: a yummy cake from Steve, reading time, my lovely new drawer knobs, sending silly pictures to Ruben, palak paneer, yummy chicken for dinner, my second finished set of drawers, frozen food instructions for Dave, and crispy beef!

Week 44

Time for colder weather!

29th October - 5th November

From left to right: condensation on my windscreen, time for candles, purple car, our fish have found a spot to hibernate, spots!, scarf time, a massive full moon, herbs, and sunlight!

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Second Cabinet Finished!

It's taken me a few weeks, but I have finished my second bedside cabinet for the spare room. Hoorah! It looks awesome - especially with it's funky drawer pulls!


The distressing came out really nicely on this one. I only did one coat of white, which made the sanding process way quicker than the last one. I also think the overall finish is better. Still happy with my first attempt but this is definitely my favourite of the two. The drawer pulls were the absolute perfect colour as well!


I opted for a crackle glaze ceramic finish (it was one that Dave hated the least!!) and the colour is spot on. After looking all over the place, I finally bought mine from Knobbles and Bobbles on eBay - you can visit their shop here. They've got some lovely coat hooks that would match beautifully as well, which I may buy for the back of the door once I've finished work on the bed. We shall see!

A little before and after for you!

Whilst talking about the spare bedroom, I made a massive mistake on my blanket last night - actually a few days before, by the look of it! I somehow managed to make a 9 sided octagon, which I think is a really special skill. Not so much when it comes to crochet though. I obviously got complacent, wasn't counting properly, and bodged the entire block. So I frogged the last cream section last night, and have started the block again this evening. I will frog the rest of the previous one another night. It's so frustrating though, as it's actually my last block of the set! Onwards and upwards though, with lots of careful counting from now on!

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Week 43

I missed cooking!

22nd - 29th October

From left to right: finished my malaria tablets, walks to work, new earrings, poached eggs for breakfast, blanket block pile is growing!, came home to find Dave hanging fairy lights, my first apple strudel, eggs from Fiona's chickens, and a "lobster pie" for Emma (chicken and leek...haha!)

Week 42

More amazing sights in Kenya!

15th - 22nd October

From left to right: pied kingfisher on Lake Naivasha, boys fishing on the lake, travelling to Amboseli, amazing encounters with elephants, pelicans, back home to crochet again, snuggling under my shuka, roses from our wedding photographer, and my new coat from a trip to Glastonbury!

Week 41

Off we fly!

8th - 15th October

From left to right: amazing views from the plane, we've arrived in Nairobi, baby elephants at the Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, views over the Rift Valley, lilac breasted roller, visiting the Masai, weaver bird building a nest, baby zebras are so cute, and massive views full of wildebeest!

Week 40

Getting ready for the holiday of a lifetime!

1st - 8th October

From left to right: yarn for my Summer Mosaic blanket arrived!, cinema with Gurpriya on a last minute day off, sanding detail on my bedside cabinet, Kenyan shillings arrived, finished my rooster, progress on my first blanket block, packing for Kenya, nachos for dinner, mocktails to go with them!

Monday, 30 October 2017

Kenya!

Ok, it has taken me a couple of weeks to finish sorting through all of my photos, but I finally finished this evening! I took about 1600 in total and have managed to cut that down as best I can - I find it so hard to let go of pictures though!


We spent our first day on a plane, so I'm counting the start of the holiday as the Tuesday! We went to the Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage in the morning, which was absolutely incredible. They basically have a couple of pools set up, and the babies come and have some milk and then play around in the mud and water, getting you covered in the process! Genuinely a once in a lifetime experience, and I feel so privileged to have been. We were even lucky enough to touch the elephants.

After our excursion we went back to our hotel and relaxed for the afternoon, before having dinner in the African BBQ restaurant. We got to try all different kinds of meats, including crocodile (which was so yummy!), ostrich and camel! Following dinner, we had an early night to prepare for travelling to the Masai Mara in the morning!


We set off for the Masai Mara first thing in the morning, via the Rift Valley. The journey lasted about 4.5hrs, the last 1.5hr of which was on an unfinished road. We arrived in time for lunch and took a few hours to freshen up, before heading out for an evening game drive (between about 16:00-18:30).

We saw some absolutely incredible things, initially getting stupidly excited by some wildebeest, but then going on the see elephants, zebra, ostriches, giraffes, and finally a cheetah eating it's fresh kill! It felt amazing to see something so unusual, though not for the faint hearted - lots of blood and guts! Both Dave and I were really surprised at how many amazing things we saw on our first game drive though. We literally expected to see a couple of zebra and that be it, so we were really excited for what the rest of the holiday had in store!


Our first full day in the Masai Mara. We went for two game drives today, starting early til lunch and then going out again in the evening for another couple of hours. Again, we felt so incredibly lucky. After finishing the previous night with the cheetah, were really weren't expecting our first sight of the day to be not just one but two cheetahs! We followed this with some awesome bird life, leopards (again, not just one but TWO), giraffes and later on some lions. The amount of wildlife and the diversity of it is incredible. With the leopards, we saw the first one whilst it was hunting wildebeest and thought that would be it, but after a close encounter with some elephants we saw the second leopard sleeping in a tree! Definitely a strike of luck! Dave made a good spot with a pool of hippos on the evening drive, and I managed to take a picture of two lions mating (again, apparently not usually seen that often).

After being blown away by all of the wildlife, we returned to the hotel for a really great dinner, and then dancing from some of the local Masai, which was really awesome to watch.


Another full day in the Masai Mara. We had some massive storms the night before, so our guide Frank suggested we drive over to the other side of the park to see if we could find any crocodiles - success! It was a long drive but we saw several crocodiles on the riverbank. We then made our way back to our side of the park and passed cheetah, lions, and lots of wildebeest (literally millions) and visited the local Masai village. It was approximately 3 miles away from our lodge, tucked away behind some trees - you'd have never known it was there, to be honest. We were shown around by a really lovely guy called John, who made us so welcome. Dave got to dance with the men, and they showed us how to make fire. We also got to look inside one of their houses, and met family members. It was a really amazing experience and I feel really privileged to have met them.

After a short break we went back out into the park again (staying a bit closer to home this time) and tried to find some rhino. We were unsuccessful but did spot loads of hippos, and some tiny baby gazelle, so all was not lost. We then returned to our hotel to pack and prepare for moving to our next location in the morning.


We left early for our journey to Lake Nakuru, stopping once on the way. It's approximately 6.5hrs, as you have to go back towards Nairobi before going along the lakes. After settling into our new lodge and freshening up, we went for an evening game drive in the national park - we saw rhinos! That completed our "big 5". Such a privilege to see. We were both a little gutted we couldn't get a little bit closer, but we saw them (bottom left). We also saw some of Lake Nakuru's famous flamingoes, a really interesting troop of baboons, and some different birds. Our guide, Frank, also got a picture of us infront of Makali waterfall.


We woke up to the most amazing sunrise this morning, but had to set off early to travel to Amboseli. Enroute we stopped for a boat ride across Lake Naivasha. I really don't like boats and was expecting to hate it, but it was so much fun! We saw loads of different birds! It felt refreshing to photograph something completely different as well. The pied kingfishers were absolutely adorable - I could've watched them all day!

After our boat ride, we made our way back to Nairobi and had some lunch, and then continued to Amboseli along the Mombassa road. We got held up by an accident on the way, but Frank decided to off-road past it haha! We arrived in Amboseli just before dinner, so that gave us opportunity to have a look around the lodge resort and then chill a little in the evening. We were both so tired after the long journey though, so it was an early night for us both!


Amboseli is so hot! Our game drive today went from about 7:30-2:00 and peaked at about 33 degrees. It was like an oven in the truck when we weren't moving. We did have an incredible experience with some elephants though, so it was totally worth it. We saw our first herd eating just inside the park entrance. There was an enormous bull elephant - I was really shocked at how big it was. Amazing how quiet these animals are though, when you look at the size of them. We then moved on and saw another herd making their way down towards the swamps. We sat for ages watching them all walk down, throwing dust at each other and playing. Then they went into the water to graze and cool down. We were so close. Definitely a highlight of the whole holiday!

After lunch we got an afternoon to chill out (which we really needed). We checked out the Masai ladies market in the resort and bought a few souvenirs. Their jewellery is so beautiful!


In the morning we managed to see Mount Kilimanjaro peeking out from the clouds before we left - I was so worried we wouldn't see it! We drove back to Nairobi, arriving at lunch time, and spent the afternoon in the tour operators lounge relaxing before our flight. Here we are with Frank and our truck!

The flight home was very long and very boring. It was overnight and I didn't sleep at all...so I worked my way through 3 films and chatted with the flight attendants! We arrived back in London at approximately 6am and drove straight home, where I had a nap for a few hours and tried to work through our washing!

We had the most amazing time. Kenya is a beautiful country, full of beautiful people. Everyone was so kind and helpful, and it was incredible seeing a completely different culture. We couldn't have asked more from our guide Frank - he was super knowledgable and so lovely! The variety of animals was insane, as I'm so glad that we eventually saw some rhinos. We've both decided that we would love to go back one day! Hope you like all the pictures. I've done lots of crochet since getting home, so an update on that is on the cards for later in the week!

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Bedside Cabinet #1

Yesterday I finished my first bedside cabinet! After whitewashing the whole thing a few weekends back, I got the chance to sand it down, smooth it out and put a coat of finishing wax on over the top, and I am really pleased with the result!


The cabinet was originally a silk cream colour, which has actually shown through the sanding and adds a really warm touch. I painted over it completely with Rust Oleum Duck Egg, rough strokes of Dusky Pink and then the Chalk White (two coats) on top. Loving it!


Sanding took quite a while, and it's hard to know when to stop. I think I did just the right amount though - distressed without going mad. I tried to bring all of the colours through as well, and it looks as I intended. I just wanted a hint of the pink coming through! The cream was an added bonus.


This is my favourite bit of the whole cabinet. I love that I have sanded down to the wood, and have all of the colours showing. It took ages to perfect! I kept doing a little bit and then going back, but I'm glad I stopped when I did. I think it looks pretty!

By the end of my sanding session I had white hair and paint coming out of my nose - all good fun! The garage is covered in dust but I'll clean that up after I've attacked cabinet #2 and the bed frame! No point at the moment.

Just need to get some handles for the drawers to finish this set completely. The old handles are nice but won't fit in with the distressed style, so I want to get something different. No rush though!

Overall I'm pleased with my first attempt at upcycling! It looks how I intended it to, so that's always an added bonus. I think I'll only do one coat of white on the next cabinet - I sanded so much off of this one that it seems pointless to add a coat that I'm just going to take off when it's dry. Learning as I go!

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Week 39

Lots of cooking, this week!

24th September - 1st October

From left to right: cooking up some steak stroganoff, baking funfetti cake for our Macmillan morning at work, sunset at the end of a long day, South African chutney chicken, finally getting to paint one of the bedside cabinets, duck egg and dusky pink, really pink cake, cooked my first casserole, and yummy mozzarella chicken for dinner!

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Happy October!

Today has been a good start to a new month!


Here's an up-to-date status on my reading project! I have now reached 12/18 books for 2017, so am only 1 book behind schedule at the moment. With our 2 weeks honeymoon approaching, I am hoping to get in some serious reading time (when we aren't out and about, obviously). Just the chance to relax will be so welcome, to be honest. I am desperate for a proper break now! Anyway, book number 13 has been started - gone back to a favourite author of mine; Paul Finch. He released a new "Heck" book in April, which I haven't gotten around to reading yet, so have made a start on that. Fab so far! Taking my Kindle with me to Kenya, and there are about 50 books currently sat waiting on there, so I won't be short of reading material while we are away!

On a crochet front, I have ordered the yarn for my spare bedroom blanket! That will arrive this week! I am about to order the yarn for Nurse Adrienne's teddies (which I promised her ages ago), so I will have two projects on the go at once. Unusual for me, but I will find it hard to concentrate on the amigurumi at work - NHS staff rooms are not the place to try and count rounds haha! So my blanket will be the project I take into work, and the teddies will stay at home. I'm excited to get started on both of those though.

I finished Sam's rooster this evening! But I can't share any pictures with you yet. I want her to be the first to see him, so I will post him this week and write a little bit about him once he has met his new mummy! I'm super pleased with him though, he looks fab.


I started painting the bedroom furniture today! This is just a WIP shot, but those are two of the colours I have gone with. The duck egg blue is divine! Dusty pink, it's pretty and will look nice once sanded back I think. The first bedside table is drying at the moment and I will sand and wax it during the week, or next weekend. Hopefully it turns out well though! Dave isn't too keen on the idea of the upcycled look, so fingers crossed I can prove him wrong and create something really special (no pressure then!).

Back to work tomorrow, after what has been a pretty good weekend. Had my last flu clinic yesterday morning, then went into Poole with Dave for some lunch and last minute Kenya shopping. Got home and made a delicious beef and ale casserole - my first attempt at making something like this, and it went really well! Yay! Today was a mixture of swimming, painting and chilling...mostly painting. Watched a film this evening while I finished Sam's rooster and will be off to bed in a little while, methinks. Maybe a cup of tea first. Then in the morning I am going on an ECG training course, followed by work. Can't wait for our holiday now!

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Bedroom Decorating

Since the wedding, I have been feeling a little blue - just posting wedding blues, where I was planning constantly for 8 months and then suddenly it's over! Honeymoon in a couple of weeks, but that was all planned. So I have taken it upon myself to decorate our downstairs spare bedroom!

From Design Seeds

This is the kind of colour scheme I am going with. The walls are already a cream colour, so I'm not touching those (just touching up a few scuffs) but I want to accent the room with these nice floral tones. It will only need a few accessories to look really pretty!

Our lovely friends Rich and Sarah have gifted us their old bed and bedside cabinets, which I am going to upcycle! I've bought some chalk paint and am intending to distress them, with hints of pink and duck egg underneath white. I'm hoping it looks nice, and if it doesn't I figure I'll just paint over it again! The paint arrived yesterday, so I might get a chance to try it out on a cabinet this weekend...if not, next weekend when I don't have a flu clinic getting in the way.

I have decided I want to make a couple of special blankets to keep in there (I never make anything for me). I've had the Summer Mosaic Afghan (by Julie Yeager) on my Ravelry queue for ages, so have decided to make one of those to start with! I had loads of fun setting up a suitable colour palette the other night and have decided to go with this...


I'm going with Scheepjes Stone Washed XL, as recommended by the pattern. I've wanted to work with this yarn for ages, as I love the colours. I think it'll work really well in the room too! I can't wait to get started...just need to buy the yarn!

Week 38

Fun times with friends!

17th - 24th September

From left to right: new cactus socks, lovely blue lilies from Gurpriya, perks of the job - gp meeting leftovers!, espresso martini after a busy flu clinic, making sure Fiona is still alive on our new ecg monitor, wine rack for Roz, lots of pollen on my lilies, chicken with black beans, and the day the kettle wouldn't stop boiling...we had clouds in the kitchen!

Week 37

The start of flu season!

10th - 17th September

From left to right: herbs are growing!, first flu clinic, chilli chicken for dinner, paneer curry with Gurpriya, did my first ecg (on a piece of paper...he didn't make it...), shopping for Kenya, never had a cup of tea with it's own timer before, Wagamama's with Roxy, and a lovely message from one of our nicest doctors (don't worry, I'm not pregnant!)

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Week 36

Back to normality!

3rd - 10th September

From left to right: noodles for dinner, a chunk fell off one of our neighbours trees, kitty Shaz, drinks with the lovely pharmacy gang, bought myself some roses, go to work to scan...scanner breaks, marinated chicken before work, dinner instructions for Dave!, and our little herbs!

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Hekla's Children


This afternoon I finished my 11th book of the year - Hekla's Children. Just wanted to do a little write up, because it's completely different to anything I have read before, and I really enjoyed it!

Hekla's Children, in short, is about 4 children who go missing from a school trip, and only one of them returns (with no memory of where she's been). Years later, a body is found in the place the children went missing - fearing the worst, the police look into it, but it turns out to be a Bronze Age bog mummy. Upon archeologists removing the mummy, the child that came back at the time of the school trip comes back into the story, requesting they bury it again to stop evil forces from being let loose. As you can imagine...they don't...haha! 

I first heard about this book on a list that appeared on Facebook - something to the effect of "thrillers you won't be able to put down". I made a note of it at the time, whacked it on my Kindle a few weeks ago, and started it on our mini-moon! It definitely deserves a place on that list (whatever it was called!).

I absolutely loved the start of this - the bog mummy thing drew me in, as I've always found them particularly interesting, and I love that he had a bit of a back story as well. I honestly had no idea where it was going to go, and was surprised by the direction the story took! I don't want to give too much away for those who might read, so am being intentionally sketchy. 

The characters were well described (Scattie in particular is awesome) and easy to relate to, as were the settings. I really felt I could see the stream and wooden path that comes up on several occasions in the story, as well as the wooded camp. All of the "historical" parts (easiest way to describe them without spoilers) are excellent too - vivid and so descriptive, your imagination goes mad.

I did find myself getting a little lost and losing interest about 3/4 of the way through, but this soon picked up again. This may have been due to the end of a trip away (where I could read whenever I wanted) and going back to work, rather than a problem with the story though, so it doesn't really count. I did feel that the story ended rather abruptly though - I'd have liked a couple of chapters of build up and a bit more of a fight? But that's me. I loved it either way! 

Would definitely have a look at more of James Brogden's work, and thoroughly recommend this one to everyone. It's not horror, it's not fantasy, it's not thriller...it's categorised like this on Amazon though. To be honest, fantasy is probably the closest you'll get, but not in a rainbows, unicorns and fairies kind of way. Some parts really are quite dark! 

Really though, give this one a go - it's fab!

Monday, 4 September 2017

Week 35

Mini-moon!

27th August - 3rd September

From left to right: little acorn, chilling in the sunshine, our little hideaway in Devon, herbs from Anna and James, hot air ballooning, go to the zoo - take photos of a sparrow, our weekend view, giraffe, and pretty wedding giftwrap

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Marwell

Yesterday we went to Marwell Zoo, near Winchester, to get some practice in for our honeymoon to Kenya!


We got some really good shots, and the weather was absolutely amazing! Definitely a shorts and vest kind of day! The animals all behaved as well (except for the tigers, who weren't feeling it yesterday).

Bongo, giraffe, zebra and cheetah

It has made me so unbelievably excited to see some of these incredible animals in the wild! We will be travelling around four or five different reserves, so should have loads of opportunity to get some amazing shots. Dave has bought a new lens especially for the trip! It should be the holiday of a lifetime, and I am counting the days (36 to go!). It was great to go out with our cameras though. We used to do it a lot, but struggle to find the time nowadays. I have also lost a lot of motivation since a bad experience a couple of years ago, so it felt good to take some "proper" photos again. Hopefully this will get me back in the swing of things, as I do really miss it.

Yesterday was our 3rd trip to Marwell. It's only about an hour away from us, and is by far the best zoo we have visited together. The animals all have decent sized enclosures, and all look really well looked after. It's well worth the money! If any readers ever want a recommendation for something to do in the Hampshire and Dorset area, Marwell is a must!

Unfortunately we had to leave all of the animals there though, and are both back to work tomorrow (I went back on Wednesday but have that Sunday night feeling...). Hope you've all had a good weekend - especially if you've been in the Poole/Bournemouth area, with the Bournemouth Air Show!

Week 34

A week to remember!

20th - 27th August

From left to right: our pond lily started flowering, wearing in my bridal shoes, fish and chips for lunch, wedding favours sorted, wrapped our mother of the bride/groom gifts, marrying my amazing man, love heart, my first time making palak paneer on my own (it was good!), and my wedding bunting with my beautiful bouquet!

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Our Special Day

Those who are regular followers and readers will know that last weekend I married the love of my life. I have been a bit delayed in a little update here because I have actually been back at work since Wednesday, so apologies for that!

©Fiona Moorey Photography

We had the most incredible day! What struck me the most is that my anxiety was near non-existent, for the first time in about 15 years - that says a lot, right? It's completely unheard of for me to be so chilled out, and if I'm totally honest, I was expecting the full works - shakes, nausea and tears...but there was none of that, so I got to enjoy the whole day!

©Fiona Moorey Photography

My bridesmaids were fab, and we had additional help from my brother's lovely girlfriend Emma, who assisted in carting decorations around and setting up! My girls all looked amazing, and their support over the last few months has been off the charts.

©Fiona Moorey Photography

Hair and makeup was provided by the amazing Laura Jane and Olivia Lucy - please take a moment to check out their pages on Facebook and give them some love, as they did an amazing job and really deserve it.

©Fiona Moorey Photography

Sopley Mill was stunningly beautiful. We could not have asked for a more incredible venue, and the weather was perfect as well. Having my Dad walk me down the aisle was amazing, made even moreso by walking to "Here Comes The Sun" by The Beatles - a song loved by my brothers late friend Nathan, who always said he'd walk me down the aisle. We had you there Nath!

©Fiona Moorey Photography

Our guests all looked amazing! And it was so good to have Dave's Gran and Aunt come all the way from Scotland for our special day. Thank you to everyone else who made special journeys as well - there were a few of you and we really appreciated it.

©Fiona Moorey Photography

A final thank you to our awesome photographer Fiona (and her second shooter Ann). You were both so supportive on the day and made us both feel so at ease. We couldn't have asked for a better team, and the photos we have seen so far have been exactly what we wanted, so thank you! We can't wait to see the rest of them. Please give her website a look and find her page on Facebook.

©Fiona Moorey Photography

Last, but not least, a big thank you to my wonderful husband Dave. He puts up with so much from me (including yarn stashed all over the house) and I have so many things to thank him for. I don't want to write all of the classic clichéd comments (excited to spend the rest of my life with you, etc), I just want to say thank you for always being there, looking after me, and allowing me to relax and be myself. You make me the happiest girl in the world!

I'm going to be putting up a lengthy post in the next week or so, featuring all of the lovely gifts we gave people and the amazing suppliers and crafters that they came from, so please keep a look out for those. For now though, thanks to everyone for all your support and for checking in and reading - you're all fab xx

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Getting Stuff Done!

I've had a really productive couple of days and am looking forward to sharing some pics with you all after the wedding! The table plan looked fab in the mock up, the favours are finished, and everything has arrived! I just have to go out and get a couple more bits today and all will be sorted.

I had a lovely day yesterday and ended up going all over the place. I drove over to Portesham in the morning to see my Grandparents, followed by a flying visit to drop some presents at my parents, and then back over to Westbourne to pick Gurpriya up from work. We then went for lunch!

Super yummy fish and chips at the Branksome Beach Café

After a delicious lunch, I dropped her off at the train station and then battled my way through traffic to Tescos, where I managed to find some paneer (much to my surprise) so then came home and spent some time cooking some Palak Paneer for my dinner! It turned out pretty well actually, but wasn't as good as the one Gurpriya made me a few weeks ago. A valiant attempt for a first effort without a recipe though!


I'm going to enjoy some more for my lunch today! It's really easy to make, I just think I need to double up on the spices next time I make it. At least I know that our local Tescos stocks paneer now. Saying that, there are lots of world supermarkets in the area so I could easily get some with a little effort.

Another awesome factor of yesterday, was arriving home to find our water lily had started blooming!


So all in all, Wednesday was fantastic. Today is my last day to myself before the wedding, as Dave is off work tomorrow. I need to pop out and get these last few bits but otherwise I will be pottering around the house. I think we are all organised and ready to rock with the wedding now, so just counting down these last 48hrs! It's mad to think that in a few days we will be married and we won't be planning the wedding anymore. But then we will have the honeymoon to look forward to!

One last thing before I go - I finished The Rats last night, so now I am only 1 book behind my Goodreads challenge schedule. Hopefully I'll be able to finish another one over the weekend.

Monday, 21 August 2017

Fallen Behind

I hate being behind on my Goodreads challenge, and at the moment I am 2 books behind schedule (eek) on just 9 for the year so far. Don't get me wrong, I'm doing well (considering all of the planning I have been doing this year) but I do really need to catch up. Hopefully I will be able to power through some pages on our Mini-Moon, after the wedding.


On a reasonably healthy 3,639 pages for 2017, which isn't too shabby. My annual record was back in 2015 with 7,027 pages in a year. I am hoping to try and beat that this year but we shall see what happens. As for my "Reading Challenge" list that I started earlier in the year, I have currently completed 16/50 items. There are some that I'm certain won't be checked off ("a classic romance" definitely being one of them!!!) but I hope to get a few more items ticked off before the end of the year.


I'm currently halfway through The Rats by James Herbert, which is a book I was recommended years and years ago. The good thing is that it's relatively short, fast paced, and pretty easy reading (yes, I class people being eaten alive by giant rats as "easy reading"). I should have it finished by the end of the week so that I can start something fresh for after our wedding!

It's a struggle trying to juggle all of my hobbies at the moment. I have nearly finished Sam's rooster - just the feet and finishing touches to go - but at the same time want to focus on my reading, amongst other things. I have a few other projects going on, including restoring some old photographs for Dave's Mum, which I am really enjoying. There just needs to be more hours in the day!

Week 33

Happy days!

13th - 20th August

From left to right: beautiful nature, playing around with our table plan, tea and reading time, frying chicken, a frog eating a caterpillar (photo courtesy of Dave's Dad), back to the dress shop for my final fitting, our lilypads are doing really well, fab friends, and a gorgeous wedding gift from Kara and Marcio <3

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Hen Do...Part 2!

Sorry for my recent quiet spell, I have been doing the last minute planning for our wedding (which is 6 days away!!). I just wanted to take the time to share a few pics from my awesome work hen do with you all. I went out on Friday night with an open invitation to everyone at work, and the turn out was good! Here are some of our antics...


It was a fantastic night spent with some really special people, and I'm so grateful they all came along! I drank my first cocktail (aged 28 haha) and had such a good time. It's mad to admit that this is the first time I have ever done anything like this, due to my nerves, so that shows how fab this lot are - helping me overcome obstacles! 

The real countdown is now on and I have a few things left to do for the wedding. I am off work this week though, so have plenty of time to focus and get stuff sorted out. I'll also hopefully get a little bit of time to relax and recuperate from all the hard work I've been doing! I'll have loads to share after the wedding - I really want to show you some of what is planned but it'll ruin the surprise for the day, so will have to restrain myself for now. Rest assured, you will see it all afterwards though!

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Week 32

Family and food!

6th - 13th August

From left to right: one of the roses we salvaged from the old garden, "cheat and sour pork", something borrowed, movie night with lovely people, little shroomies in the lawn!, poached eggs and buttered toast, cheeky Nandos, Dave and a "snap snap", and noodles for dinner.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Week 31

Lots of green!

30th July - 6th August

From left to right: wooden dinosaurs, our funky fairy light chillies, a box of tablet, peanuts in my bluetit feeder, amazing Palak Paneer, white wine needed, our new dragonfly, bee friendly garden plants, and beautiful blue salvia!

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Week 30

Wet week!

23rd - 30th July

From left to right: wet walks to work, crochet colours, shimmer, my pretty Saturday, llama photo album!, a brief glimpse of the fish, amazing lunch with friends, ruffles, and my first contact lenses!

Saturday, 29 July 2017

My Hen Party

It's taken me a week, but I've only just found the time to throw together a post about my lovely hen party, last weekend! My bridesmaids did an incredible job!


After being whisked away to a little lodge in the country, Saturday morning started out with a pottery painting session with Kelly and Kirsty! It was cool to spend some time with these lovely ladies (at the time, I didn't know why Sarah didn't come with us but all was revealed later on!). We painted one pot each - Kirsty and I opted for vases and Kelly painted a little bowl.


I don't know where the inspiration for my yellow vase came from, other than the colour! We have a yellow giraffe in our lounge so I wanted to do something to match that. The rest of it was just random though! Kirsty's vase started out pale yellow and then ended up blue and green! And Kelly seemed to know what she was doing right from the start! It was super therapeutic though, and I would love to go again at some point. I can't wait to go and collect our pots once they've been fired!

After our painting, we went and got changed into some 50's style dresses and headed back to the lodge, where we found...


...vintage Sarah with an afternoon tea! She had decorated the whole lodge and put out all these lovely, delicious things (that she and the others had made themselves!!). It looked awesome. However, I didn't have much time to stand and appreciate the sight of the cake - I was sat down with a hair and makeup artist to create something as lovely as Sarah's look!


Kelly and Kirsty got their hair and makeup done as well, along with some of the other ladies! Everyone looked amazing!


We ate lots of yummy food and played some games - it was really good fun! I never expected anything along these lines - the hair and makeup was a complete surprise, and nothing I'd have thought of for myself. I don't know where they plucked the idea from but it was perfect!

Next up, we went to Dorchester for some pizza! Everyone loves pizza!


Lots of deliciousness later, we retired back to our lovely country lodge and spent an hour trying to get all the pins and back combing out of our hair haha! It look forever - for hair that looks so sleek, underneath it was a nightmare!


In all, it was a really wonderful weekend. These girls are the best - I couldn't ask for better friends, who have proven just how well they know me. I'm exceptionally lucky.

There are now only 28 days until we say "I do", which seems mad. It only feels like yesterday that the countdown was in the hundreds! We still have a few bits and bobs to sort, but they're just finishing touches. But in a month, we will officially be Mr and Mrs Hope!