July 2, 2013
Last week was a busy one…
We headed to a friend’s wedding on the first weekend, at Clevedon Hall which has the most beautiful grounds, it made for some amazing portraits. My friend is the wedding planner there so I can highly recommend it!
My bump is growing all the time, luckily a friend lent me a pretty maternity dress to wear… I love the colour, hopefully I will get to wear it again…
I had a marathon cleaning and sorting session at home, one of my favourite things to do is to sort through things and get rid of things I no longer need. Then I filled the house with peonies…
I am currently obsessed with my new perfume from Paris and this Elemis oil… little pampering treats are so important, as is red lipstick, as I grow bigger and bigger.
We have finally had some sun, there are still cloudy days and the odd rainy one but the sunny days are making up for it… I am taking strolls when I can, slowly of course…
One particularly grumpy day I decided to go to Harts Bakery near my office and treat myself, I had an awesome Moroccan spiced sweet potato and feta pie and spied some poppies by the side of the road on my way back… which actually cheered me up, of course the pie helped.
Friday I picked up some new wheels, a Pashley Little Black Bike… which I love already and must try to get out more this week before I can’t ride it for a while… then that evening stayed in for Mexican bowls and movies…
Then at the weekend we took it easy, I haven’t been sleeping well and my energy levels are quite low at the moment but it’s so important to still get out and do things, and see people.
Saturday we mooched down our local high street to buy our Sunday roast meat at Rare Butchers, and pick up freshly grown herbs… they were setting up for a street party so the road was closed and the bunting was up, love that.
We visited a little flower stall where the flowers are picked from local gardens, and had a coffee in the sunshine.
Then we got in the car and headed to the Cotswolds for a friend’s birthday lunch, the pub we visited was amazing. The garden was huge but all sectioned off in little areas by flowers beds so it felt so secluded.
We went to The Wheatshef in Northleach, which I can highly recommend… the drinks selections, for those boozing and those not was immense, service good, food even better. The garden is beautiful and I so want to go and stay there!
I wasn’t the only preggo which was lush, and meant I didn’t bore everyone (I hope) by not being able to talk about anything else, and being able to compare experiences with someone pretty close to due dates as me was great… makes everything a little less scary and easier to laugh at. The barman also made us delicious elderflower and mint carafes which made us both very happy.
The best thing though was the ridiculous portion of fries, it turned out this was for two people but when pretty much the whole table had ordered some we still had a lot. A lot, a lot, a lot. I was pretty happy with the situation.
Happily I am craving normal healthy food again as well, Sunday I wanted juice so my husband made me this amazing pink lady apple, pineapple and kiwi juice. So. Good.
Then we had a friend over for a summery roast chicken which we served with roasted Jersey royals, home-made ratatouille and steamed asparagus. So simple and delicious.
I also had the most amazing present for the Baby arrive, in the shape of a quilt from my Godmother… it’s so beautiful it went straight into the cot. She is getting quite the collection now.
We also finally finished my chocolate from Paris… which was quite upsetting, I need more of those!
And now it is Tuesday already, I wasn’t quite ready for the week to start yesterday… but I am looking forward to a yoga class and going shopping for a big list of Baby needs this week.
February 25, 2013
I am back… a few people have asked if everything is okay, let me take this chance to say that everything is fine, I am just really busy at work and at home which has affected everything else organisation-wise… I am trying hard to get myself organised again and get some blogs together.
I have had some lovely weekends which I am really sorry I didn’t get a chance to blog, I feel like I might forget nice times if I don’t have a record of them… this isn’t true of course but I do love having this little diary.
I have to mention last weeks beautiful sunny days, cold they were but they made me believe that spring is around the corner… I took the scenic route to work and went for frozen yogurt at lunch… I am so excited when the sun appears.
It was my husbands birthday last week, so this weekend his family came to stay and we ate our way around Bristol… seriously. The rest of this diary is all food.
We had a quiet morning at home on Saturday when I ate far too much toast with raspberry curd… my new obsession.
We spent the day visiting my Mr’s favourite spots with his sister and her boyfriend, that of course meant a visit to his favourite lunch spot Grillstock for some amazing pulled pork rolls and cornbread.
We love that there’s an Irish pub nearby with a real fire that let you bring your own lunch, so we headed there to keep warm and munch, with added Guinness.
Dinner was tapas at Manna, with my parent-in-law joining us we certainly managed the majority of the menu… I have wanted to visit Manna for ever, so many people who really know their food have recommended it but with it being a drive away rather than a walk we have never made it.
It was so good, and despite it being a slight trek for us I have no doubt that we will be going back. The food and the service was faultless, we had a great night celebrating.
If you haven’t been yet, go, and get the Salt Cod Croquetas, we ordered three of those… the Robiola cheese with came with the most beautiful honeycomb (I need more of this in my life) and Medjool dates, also the cauliflower Slow cooked in yoghurt with pinenuts, coriander and caramelized butter. All of those are still in my memory this morning… delicious.
Then there was much drinking… and a few sore heads the next day so it was a slow morning at home with Biggie.
Then the final treat… Sunday lunch at the Pony and Trap. Another spot I have wanted to visit for a while.
I can tell you it definitely lives up to the hype. It was easily the best Sunday roast I have ever had, I find pork a comforting meal normally, not a wow meat, but this was melt in the mouth and so full of taste, apparently the beef was also beautiful. We were all very quiet for quite some kind when our food arrived.
Also the vegetables were all beautiful, a really wide variety and all cooked perfectly (savoy cabbage, peas, carrots, rainbow beetroot, parsnips, duck fat potatoes… also cauliflower and leek cheese!) Anywhere that serves cauliflower cheese wins at roasts in my opinion. Mine also came with a celeriac puree and home-made apple sauce, they also had fresh horseradish!
Also the views are beautiful. I do love a good Somerset valley.
We skipped starters as the puddings were all our favourites, the sticky toffee pudding, with plenty of sauce and salted caramel ice cream (the best flavour in the world) was so light and not too sickly.
The crumble was also great, I was lucky and me and the Mr spilt them both. Almond custard and a crispy topping with lovely fruit. So good.
We were left with a warm happy full glow that can only come from a good Sunday roast.
Also the shortbread… lighter than air and delicious coffee. I need to learn how to do that.
Then since we couldn’t possibly have fitted in cheese at the pub we got some on the way home and snacked on it that evening instead of an actual meal (so not needed)… and I started watching Mad Men again… a perfect evening in my eyes!
So many ‘awesome’s and ‘amazing’s in this post. I apologise.
Do take my advice go visit these places… if you haven’t already, I am late to the party.
November 26, 2012
Yet another insta-photo diary… bored yet? I have some actual blogs this week too don’t worry.
So I will start at Thursday just because I saw the Queen! That’s her very post car, she and Prince Phillip drove right past me as I left my office for lunch. Such good timing. She looked very little and cute!
I spent most of last week working into the evening after my week off I had lots of catching up to do… Biggie kept me company by lounging on the kitchen table. I think he was trying to distract me.
Friday was party time, for a few months now some friends and I have been planning to throw a secret party for two of my bestest, Ollie was my best bridesman and Baz was a witness at my wedding. It was also their birthday this month and they used to run a night called Penguin Dance, so we brought it back for one night only.
I still can’t believe they didn’t find out! Well done everyone who kept quiet… and big love to all that came was amazing to see so many old friends. I danced, sang at the top of my lungs and drank like I was a student again.
Saturday was of course extremely painful, after getting over-excited about being with all my uni crew I drank far too much, pretending I was young again!
I had a beauty appointment in the day to get big huge eyelashes (I love them!) then it was chinese food and red wine on the sofa with Biggie and my husband…
Biggie was a bit grumpy too… he stole my seat and got cross when I took a photo…
I also got another birthday present, some more beautiful china for my dresser and found room for Ben and Jerry’s. Lets face it, there is always room for Phish Food.
Sunday was all about the food. We decided to have a very chilled day at home, venturing out for breakfast as the cupboard are bare at home! We hit our favourite spot Souk Kitchen for proper coffee and delicious eggs… I tried Shakshouka for the first time. So good.
Then I actually got a head start on work this week before making the most awesome burgers and brownies.
Some things are standard when I make burgers at home, we must have home fries (the only time I don’t want home-made chips), pickles, mayo and cheese in the burger and salad on the side. We nearly always have avocado, either sliced or in guacamole form but yesterday I caramelised some onions and this might be my new favourite addition… even if it is a little messy to eat!
Brownies… you all must know my simple recipe right now… they must have raspberries in them at the moment… a Sunday tradition we just cannot break!
I hope you all have a good week, I am keeping it simple it’s all about work and the gym this week. Nothing else. Sounds boring but it is very necessary, my 3 jobs are all giving me pretty good to do lists right now so I need to stay on top of it… and I want to keep next weekend free… we are hitting December people and you know what they means!!
October 29, 2012
So last week was a busy one… I have so much work on at the moment any relaxation time is being enjoyed to the max…
Early on I had a meeting with the lovely Anna Tyler Cakes about developments for You Make Me Swoon… I got to taste wedding cakes, so fun. Her kitchen full of cakes is so pretty.
I have been craving simplicity and comfort this week, mostly because of the change in the weather… its gotten serious cold now, but also because I am so busy.
I am eating lots of plain roasted baked potatoes with delicious salads and steamed veggies are hitting the spot like only they can. Also cookies… There is something so childlike about a glass of milk and some warm cookies.
I did manage to fit a date in with my Husband who took me out for a classic dinner and a movie date. We pretended we were back in LA for a moment… and went to our favourite sushi spot then for frozen yogurt…
We couldn’t pretend for long though on such a spooky misty night! We went to see Beasts of the Southern Wild… which I loved. It is very dark and quite upsetting but really good. A beautiful film.
One new thing this week is that I am ‘fasting’ from 8pm until 12pm…
I am using quotation marks because I am obviously asleep for most of that time… but the hardest thing is that you cannot have any calories, at all, That includes drinks…
I have become addicted to finishing my meal with a few chocolate covered almonds to fill me up and then drinking peppermint tea for the rest of the evening. From my posh china of course.
Friday we had a big colourful wedding at riverstation… I loved the details… there were so many! Cute vases of random flowers, hessian runners, pretty pastel sugared almonds, love quotes from tv, movies and books on every place setting(dedication) and names in scrabble letters…
I loved the riot of colour even more… the cake table was laden with tons of sweets and the brides huge bouquet was gorgeous… heaven knows how she held that all day…
The best detail of all was the olive oil and beautiful bright green olives brought all the way from Italy by the grooms extended family. So amazing.
Friday was a laid back cooking for friends affair. I made my favourite risotto and the girls brought wine and jelly and ice cream for dessert… we all went to school together and it was fun hanging out, we don’t get to do it very often.
Then huge excitement on Saturday morning as we went for our final Bridesmaid dress fitting at Alexandra King… and heard all about the wedding details coming together from my friend Hannah. I am so excited to be her bridesmaid and cannot wait for her Christmas extravaganza wedding!
The studio is girl heaven, stacks of fashion books, sparkly shoes, and pretty dressmaking paraphernalia everywhere…
Afterwards we all went to lovely Axbridge in Somerset, I seriously adore this part of the South West, it’s so dreamy out in the fields and the towns are too cute.
We found the prettiest tea rooms with huge beams and stained glass windows…
And I ate a monster sized portion of tangy Somerset cheese on toast before a little wander around the sunny town square…
Afterwards I stayed in the country for a friend’s birthday, with lots of bubbles, red wine and kiddos running around I had no time for photographs. I was so exhausted after all the peekaboo and running around playing tag games I went home and drank tea, ate chocolate and read my book until bed. On Saturday night. Rock and roll.
Sunday was just as chilled… a marathon reading session, I am so in love with Anna Karenina, Tolstoy describing the Russian countryside could almost make me give up the hazy South West.
There was also a few hours of catching up on work before Monday, some slow roasted mexican pork and a huge hot chocolate to warm me up after a cold farmers market run…
Heres to another busy week… I’ll tell you why on wedding Wednesday!
October 22, 2012
I nearly didn’t blog this weekend, I didn’t take nearly enough good photographs and didn’t do much except work… then I had such a lovely Sunday I decided I wanted to remember it…
The week started well with a dinner with friends, I made up some delicious platters of snacks to nibble on while I made a huge pot of risotto… a more Autumnal meal you couldn’t find; butternut squash, mascarpone and sage. Delicious.
I also gathered leaves and mini pumpkins to make a centrepiece. I love to decorate my table.
There were of course weddings, one with a Japanese bride who made origami place settings for everyone, and another smaller wedding who gave everyone love hearts. Even me!
I cannot get enough of these pretty Jean Paul Gaultier diet coke cans… even though this stuff is so bad for you. Also Marilyn Mac collab? So cute.
My feet were in so much pain after that walk… note to self ballet flats are no good for 4 hours walk. Ouch.
The light on Saturday was amazing, proper hazy in the daytime turning into this awesome sunset.
Then we had some friends over and I made some amazing fish tacos from a recipe on A Cup of Jo, which I messed with a little and I’ll share very soon… I also made my best salsa yet.
I of course brought some flowers… these lilac roses are so lovely and left over from a wedding, and I got a beautiful autumn bouquet from my favourite Flowers of Stokes Croft, chinese lanterns included.
Biggie was being super cute as always, he loves to sit on the stairs now you can see into the whole dining kitchen area now… and that’s his standard stance when he enters the living room. He is so suspicious of the television and it’s only a recent thing… weird.
Sunday being my only day off this week I was exhausted so once again I spent a wonderful lazy morning watching old movies (Funny Face this time) and I made delicious baked eggs… another recipe to share… with coffee and Audrey I recuperated.
Then the sun suddenly made an appearance so my Husband and I went for a mooch into the city, hitting the shops and then going for coffee and cake on the way home. He brought me a present in the form of a Tolstoy book… I have never read this, how bad is that?
I am on chapter 10 already and I love it already.
Then it was home to cook once again, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen this weekend and loved it.
I nibbled on pretzels and sipped a G&T while I made Barak Obama’s chilli recipe… which wasn’t very hot so I pimped it up a little. Again I will share this soon!
It’s a very dreary morning so I am going to need the memories of a nice weekend to get me through.
October 15, 2012
Well I think we can all agree winter is here, it has arrived a little early. I will be panic buying tights, jumpers and gloves this week…
I have seen some very wintry evenings, this was my view on my walk home one evening, so beautiful, and my Husband and I have started on the Whiskey Mac’s. Our favourite winter cocktail which I will share with you soon…
I had my first civil partnership. Bob and Damien had a Mr Men theme and a bake-off with their guests, the sheer number of cakes was insane… people went in!
I had a lush dinner with some amazing girls at Bravas… I am so addicted to their Patatas Bravas and wish I lived nearby so I could pop in for a snack more often…
I also had a lovely trip to Bath to have dinner with my Mum…
She spoiled me rotten as always and we ate an Italian feast at Martini… I had Procecco, stuffed courgette flowers, which were amazing…
…and Lobster pasta, finishing off with an Amaretto bomb. It so so alcoholic I think it pushed me over the sleepy-full of food-drunken edge. I was quite upset I couldn’t just climb into bed right there and then.
I recommend Martini, a proper Italian run restaurant with Italian staff. The head waiter made us laugh with his bad jokes and a birthday table got the most amazing serenade from them all.
Saturday morning was lazy as expected… I hung out with Biggie and read with a cup of tea in bed…
Then we went out for breakfast, to our favourite local spot – Souk Kitchen it really is the only choice on the weekend for a non-greasy good ingredient filled breakfast.
Then of course it was of to work for me, for another wedding. We also spied another Bride and Groom on the river… in a row-boat. So brave.
That cake on the right? Our chefs made that. So beautiful.
After that it was an evening in with some Cornish sparkling wine from Camel Valley (thanks Mum), mexican food and movies. Much needed as I really felt like I was coming down with something.
Sunday was another stay at home day, I was tired and I refuse to get ill so we took it easy with a long breakfast and papers, and then lots of pottering around the house, sorting my flowers out and tidying up.
Before joining friends at our local for a roast in the (cold) sunshine. Probably our last in the garden this year.
Then home for a Sunday ritual of baking brownies and snuggling with Biggie again.
A lovely long weekend… so glad I took it easy and so feel tons better this morning. No cold yet this year… *touch wood*
October 8, 2012
Monday… again? Really?
It was so dark this morning when my alarm went off I started googling sunlight lamps. I need one of these in my life.
I am scared… winter is well and truly here.
So my weekend… was jam-packed but seriously lovely.
Friday I was lucky enough to be invited to Lahloo Pantry’s first birthday party… you must know by now how much I love this place… we were fed red wine and hot cider, the best rarebit I ever had (thinking of making a trip up there soon to order multiple slices) matcha macaroons and this beautiful birthday cake…
A big Happy Birthday to Lahloo, and thank you for the invitation.
Saturday was glorious and I spent a leisurely morning in my sunny kitchen with coffee and poached eggs…
Before dashing off to work… I had to grab a little caffeine on the way and how cute are these limited edition diet cokes?
The wedding was beautiful, I spent the whole day like a giddy little girl… I loved hanging the brides ivy decor… and her bouquet was the cutest and smelt so sweet…
Their favours were great too, each guy had a favourite book of theirs and the girls had handmade vases (by the mother of the bride I believe!) all with little bookmarks with their name on…
They even had my favourite book in the whole wide world… Tess of the D’Ubervilles.
The best thing though, was their arrival, on the Matthew…
Even better was that I got to go and hang out on her… Once again I was pinching myself that this is my job.
Saturday night I had a quick sushi date with my husband…
…before going to my dear friend Aoife’s birthday party which was so fun, and quite drunken. She made everyone party bags. She is super cute.
The next morning, with a slightly sore head I had a long lie in with tea and a book before making cheese on toast…
… and moving to the sofa to watch old Marilyn movies under a blanket. Whenever I am not feeling great this is what I do. These movies made me so happy… and diamonds are a girls best friend is such a tune!
I did eventually venture outside… to a gorgeous day…
To visit the Sunday market for a little treat.
Then visited another lovely girl-friend to deliver more birthday treats… this year all of my friends are getting a little Chanel treat… it’s a great time saver and who wouldn’t love anything arriving in this classic packaging?
The rest of the day was spent working my way through the papers while my Husband made roast chicken… Perfect.
I love writing these little weekend posts, they make me feel so grateful every Monday and are a great little diary.
I hope I am not boring you all with my very tame weekends!