Friday, 12 November 2010

Up north

A cold weekend up north. Amazing beach. Fish and chips.

Thursday, 11 November 2010


I am the proud owner of a new coat. A practical coat for my holiday, not your latest fashion piece from Top Shop. This coat does in fact tick all the boxes - warm, light, fitted, and of course stylish (well as stylish as it can be for an outdoorsy coat!). The coat comes from Cornwall based  Finisterre who are an award winning outdoor clothing company who produce practical, outdoor clothing which is ethically manufactured and fashionable, yes you heard it. 

Proof is in the pudding mind you, and I've got one week to wait until I put the coat to the test in the wind/rain/snow in Snowdonia, Wales. Wish me luck and let's hope I don't get blown away up on those hills.

Friday, 15 October 2010

All the leaves are brown...

... and the sky is grey. I went for a walk on a winters day.

Okay so it's not winter but it's well and truly autumn and I think I might go for a walk on Sunday to clear the cobwebs, and according to a source it's going to be sunny.

I'm on a mission to cram in those 5-a-day to avoid any flu-like symptoms so I think some warm hearty soup is on the menu this weekend. I'll post which recipe I end up going with. This is a great website for checking out what food/vegetables are in season at the moment.

Happy weekend!

Thursday, 7 October 2010

A place to relax

images via living etc

I'm in need of a place to relax. A place where I can read a book. A place where I can stop, think, close my eyes. A place where I can have a snooze. A place where I can plan. A comfortable place, with natural light and maybe a view. Okay living room, you're getting a revamp this weekend.

Thursday, 30 September 2010

October's challenge


I've just heard on the radio that summer is officially over. I'm not going to mourn for too long as Autumn is pretty much here and even though I can't wait to stay indoors on those dark nights, curling up on the sofa eating homemade stews, I'm equally ready to put a spring back in my step and get active. Sod the gym, I've never liked those soul-less places where you stare at a wall/tv whilst running on the spot for 30 minutes. I'm ready to embrace those brisk weekend runs in the park and will be practicsing more pilates that I can shake a stick at. You see I'm near the end of my course and I think it's time to up my game and be full to the brim of 'core stability' knowledge and to also look the part before I'm let loose on the general public. 

I'm currently admiring Sweaty Betty's new collection.

Goals for October include: eat breakfast. listen to more music. bake bread. buy weekly veggies from local fruit and veg man. make more time for friends. get more fresh air. find time to read a book. cook a new recipe each week.

That will do for now.

Friday, 17 September 2010

A confidence booster

The weekend is nearly here and I can't wait to escape London tomorrow to go up to Suffolk for my friends wedding, and it's going to be a sunny day, yeah! I'm hoping that I find time (after the hangover subsides on Sunday probably) to complete coursework and plan the new change that is ahead of me. Careershifters (a great website/blog that a friend of mine set up with her friends back in 2004) has been a true life-saver. It came to the rescue last year when I was made redundant, wandering around aimlessly thinking about what I was going to with my life.  Anyway, there's a great post on their blog about keeping up your spirits during the process of changing career. It's something that I've been trying to do throughout this crazy year and I think I need to go back to basics. Here are a few tips for those of you out there who like me need to focus on the (exciting) future ahead:

No 1.  Surround yourself with positive, can-do folk
There's nothing like hanging out with people who smile, laugh, offer positive support and generally see the glass half full. I try to catch up with friends who have made big changes in their life, listen to their story and hear that it was the best decision they made.

No 2. Be clear about your focus
And try and look on the upside. Challenge any negative comments from people and keep focused on the end goal.

No 3. Create your own positivity 
This could be relaxing reading a book (must try and find some time do this one!), exercising, hanging out with friends, dancing around the kitchen to your favorite tune. Something that makes you feel good about yourself.  I am the classic case of putting too much pressure on myself so I try and go for a jog at the weekend, a chance to clear my head and focus on the good stuff that's happening.

Right I'd better find my dancing shoes for tomorrow's wedding party!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

You and me

You and me print by Matthew Rose as seen on Keep Calm Gallery. Beautiful!

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

T is for Tomatoes

Me and a few friends have been discussing the state of our homegrown tomatoes (yep, life doesn't get better than this, exciting hey?). I seem to have done pretty well, especially for a beginner. This is a recent crop from the garden, grown from scratch, for the first time, I'm very proud.

What I like to hear is that
tomatoes are a very good source of Vitamins A, C and E (I could do with a vitamin boost right now). They also contain potassium and an antioxidant lycopene – which helps to mop up damaging free radicals in the body that can harm our cells. Lycopene can also help to ward against prostate and breast and can boost the skins ability to protect itself against UV rays. Powerful little things those tomatoes are!

So with having about another 30-40 tomatoes about to pop off the plant over the next few days I've been searching for some recipes that put these little red beauties to good use. I'm a big fan of Donna Hay who has a very simple recipe for Chicken with caramelised balsamic tomatoes or you can't go wrong with Jamie Oliver's Sweet cherry tomato and sausage bake, perfect for those autumn days which are close upon us.

Friday, 10 September 2010

A new direction

I spent the weekend thinking about where my blog is going. It's fairly new this little treasure of mine and seems to be lost out there in the big wide world, so I've decided to take it on a bit of journey until it finds its own path. As much as I love sharing with everyone what I love, what I've found, and where I've been, I now want these pages to represent the other priorities in my life.

Since January this year I have been training to be a pilates instructor (whilst working full time in my job in London). It's been stressful, exciting, hard work, emotionally draining and rewarding all at the same time, and as I am fast approaching the final hurdle I can finally see light at the end of tunnel and a lifestyle change to come, horrah.

So this blog will be a mixed bag about my new career path, mind, body, food, oh and the odd lovely product that I come across now and again. I hope you'll join me on the journey and find something you like along the way.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Signed sealed delivered

What did we do before email? I was a big letter-writing fan way back when. I would write to my best friend from my family holiday telling her how bored I was and would receive hand written letters from my Dad when I was at university telling me about life at home and including the odd £20 note for petrol. Oh the excitement of receiving post with your name on it that isn't a bill!!

I discovered
Telegram Stop (over at Swiss Miss ) who have brought back the the good old paper communicating system - old fashioned telegrams. You can upload your message, see how it will look, pay a small fee, and they print and post your classic-style telegram to your nearest and dearest. Right, who's first on my list?

Tuesday, 7 September 2010


A week ago me a few girlfriends dined out at Caravan on Exmouth Market. It was a Friday and the restaurant was buzzing with people like me, desperate for a glass of wine and a catch up with friends to take your mind off the working week. The restaurant opened at the beginning of the year and has had some impressive reviews so far hence why it was so busy (we had to book a table ahead). However it was the formula of good location, simple decor, and good quality food for a decent price that did it for me! Favorite dishes around the table included: peppered tuna with broadbean and ginger vinaigrette, falafel with apple and pepper relish, tahini and corianer, and salt and sichuan pepper squid. Will I return? Yes please!

Monday, 6 September 2010

Introducing Miguel

I want to introduce you to my friend Miguel de Almeida and his blog West Coast Cooking which I've been following for some time now. When the weather is dull, and I'm sat at my desk at work staring at a screen of emails on a Monday morning, I often divert and log on to see what delights he has been cooking in his kitchen that weekend.

I had the pleasure of working with Miguel a few years ago at a design company in Marylebone. Yes, the very talented Miguel is also a designer as well as a cook (damn him!) and he combined the two skills together when he
wrote and designed his first cookery book last year which included British recipes with Portugese twist on them, very clever indeed!

We would talk about food (a lot), and our dreams of escaping office life. Let's hope we're both a little closer.

Inspiration for the Day

Just come across these lovely interior photos from the new Autumn/Winter 10 campaign from Day Birger et Mikkelsen. Love the grey/white/black/silver combination.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Somewhere in the middle of nowhere

We're going on holiday. It feels so good to be saying that. We've finally got round to booking a week away in November and I'm breathing a sigh of relief to know that I'll have a week of doing nothing. We're off to Snowdonia in Wales and have hired a cottage by a lake in the middle of nowhere. I'm picturing lots of country walks, pub lunches, sitting by the log fire in the cottage wrapped in a blanket with a hot chocolate in one hand and a book in the other, games of scrabble over a bottle of red wine. Yes, a week sitting by the pool in the blazing hot sun would have been lovely but what's wrong with the Welsh country air?! Waterproofs, wellies, and thermals, bring it on!! Of course I've already started making a list of clothing essentials for the trip - leg warmers, mittens, wellies, wooly socks...

already spotted this jumper from Howies / mittens and leg warmers from Plumo

Friday, 27 August 2010

On yer bike

My boyfriend is obsessed...with cycling/bikes/bike equipment/bike parts/bike routes.

I listen (most of the time) when he's telling me about how far he's cycled around Richmond Park, how he's planning another big ride through the night, through the countryside. Don't get me wrong, I would rather he talked about bikes than sit on his bum playing the playstation all day long.

Anyway I've thought, if you can't beat them, join them, so I've got my eye on the Chixie bike by Giant described as cool, but not too cool for school. One supplier describes the handle bars as 'high rise cafe bars are a bonus for anyone who doesnt want to be doubled over on their way to the shops/work/pub.' Sounds like my type of bike.

photo by

Petersham Nurseries

After a failed first attempt to find Petersham Nurseries last month we were determined to find it a few weeks back when we went on a walk by the river (been busy hence the delay at getting this post live!). I only wish that I could have had a 'supermarket sweep' style moment in their shop - I would have easily piled my trolley high with all their wonderful plants, books, wellies, vintage homeware, tin pots in about 60 seconds.

These are a few of my favourite pics that I managed to take whilst oooh-ing and ahh-ing at all the lovely flowers but Artemis over at Tales of a Junkaholic has recently taken some amazing shots from her sunny visit the other week and captured the place really well. If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of London town then this is the place to visit, oh and you can have a cup of tea and slice of cake too!

Wednesday, 25 August 2010


Beautiful Durdle Door, Dorset

August. Where has this month gone. I feel as though I've not had time to sit down, breathe and relax. It might have something to do with fitting in: a camping holiday in Dorset, planning and hosting a bbq party for 25 friends and family in our 2 bedroom flat in the rain, studying non-stop for my pilates theory exam, working long hours, oh and turning 34!

I'm on a mission to find some me time in September.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010


A crop from our garden last week consisted of one healthy sized courgette and a handful of beans, perfect for a meal for 2. The bad news is that I killed our courgette plant, whoops.... Over the past few months it had grown huge, I mean so big I was worried that the leaves would take over the whole garden. Anyway I seeked advice from my Dad (a keen gardener, who thinks of himself as Alan Titchmarsh, I kid you not!) and he said, 'chop off some of the leaves', so I did, and courgette plant wasn't happy at all. Well you live and learn I say, and at least we've got about 6 tomato plants to love and cherish!

Tuesday, 27 July 2010


I've just come across a website that had me hooked for ages (well, my lunch break). Anorak love the outdoors, and their website proves it. They specialise in travel, camping and gardening accessories and seeing as I'm a big fan of camping, I'm always on the hunt for cool stuff that I can fill the tent/car up with! Really like their seagull coolbag. That would be perfect for my camping trip down to Dorset next weekend!

Monday, 26 July 2010

Down by the river

When I haven't got my head stuck in an anatomy book studying, or visiting friends, my weekends are now spent exploring the area where we live - wandering down to the Thames, catching a ferry over to the other side, getting lost in Richmond Park. Dan grew up around here when he was younger so knows the area pretty well so I love it when he takes me on some magical mystery tour and shows me little pockets of tranquillity. The latest discovery is Ham Polo Club. We walked past there the other day to find a match on in full swing. They have matches going on every Sunday throughout the summer so you can stroll in with your picnic and sit on the grass soaking up the atmosphere for just £2 (a must this summer I think).

A part of me wants to keep our weekend walk routes a secret but the more people come and visit, the more we want to share a bit of what we have on our doorstep. I'm sure the novelty wears off for most people living around here but I'm still amazed that you can find peace and quiet and think that you're a million miles away from London when you're actually in Zone 5!

I think I've finally found a slower pace of life, and I love it!