Wednesday, 24 March 2010



This afternoon, there was a knock at the door. I thought it would probably be the postman, so I was wonderfully surprised when it turned out to be my brilliant soon-to-be-married Helen.

Helen brought with her a bag of delight, including essentials to get me through our engagement:

1) a beautiful notebook to fill with to-do lists that will fit in my handbag. Only minutes before Helen came by I had thought to myself that I really did need a little to-do list book, as it's not always practical to carry around my wedding planning book with me, as much as I would love to.

2) tissues that are far too pretty to use, but intended for those times when I might just get emotional, filled with happiness, sadness, or a bit of overwhelmedness.

Thankyou, Helen, for brightening my day.
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Tuesday, 23 March 2010

people watching

This weekend saw us roadtripping to London to celebrate John's birthday.

As we sat on a Big Red Bus in the late hours of Saturday evening, returning home from a night full of food&film (or food&sleeping, as was the case with me), a man came onto the bus who inspired this blog post.

There was nothing particularly special or surprising about this man. But I couldn't help but notice how he smiled as he read a text on his phone, oblivious to the swarms of people around him and the motion of the swaying bus. I wondered at the words he was reading, maybe a friend telling a funny story, maybe a piece of wonderful news, maybe hearing from a loved one. Whatever it said, it was making this man look full of joy.

My eyes wandered around the bus, noticing little pockets of people's lives, scattered around for all to see:

An unlikely looking couple, the lady wore a white hat that had a little bug crawling over it, unbeknownst to her, the man had incredibly long hair. The South American couple in front of us, clearly talking with love in their voices. The friends beside me, some losing their consciousness to sleep, some engrossed in conversation.

Every person with a story to tell. I wondered at how, just by John uttering those few words to me two weeks ago has given me a brand new story to tell.

I love how each experience we have gives us a story to tell, and how some stories have people utterly captivated and caught up in the emotion with you, while others make people want to fall asleep. Regardless of the response of others, our lives are made up of stories and it's a wonderful thing to be surrounded by people who share the stories of their lives with you.
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Wednesday, 17 March 2010

full of light

A few weeks ago, John & I travelled across the country to spend the day with some of his family for a triple birthday celebration.

Upon our arrival, John's Mum presented me with a beautiful boquet of flowers, much to my surprise and delight.

Minutes later, John's Aunt presented me with a pot of hyacinth bulbs.

Yet it was not my birthday, it was theirs.

This is just a glimpse into the wonderful family that I am marrying into.

The flowers are still going strong after almost three weeks.

I love that their scent greets me as I walk up the stairs to my room.
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Friday, 12 March 2010

to have and to hold

The sun shone brightly in the clear blue sky on the morning of Sunday 7th March, heralding the tentative Spring day.

Having spent the morning at church, John & I set off on a mystery adventure.

As far as I was aware, we were going to Blaise Castle, or possibly Ashton Court, two of our favourite places in Bristol. I didn't know which & John wouldn't tell me, because it was a 'mystery', despite the fact that he asked me where I would like to go.

En route, John said, 'I have something for you' and pulled a piece of paper out of his coat pocket.
It was a typed message. John doesn't have a printer so I was curious as to when & where he'd printed off this little riddle.

In my slight hunger-coma state, I ate a couple of pieces of peppered salami from our picnic selection to fill the hole in my belly & help me work out the riddle.

Along with the riddle, John handed me a satellite image of our destination : Blaise Castle.

We arrived at the Blaise Estate, along with half of Bristol's population, also taking advantage of the Early Springtime Sunshine. Having eaten our picnic & established that actually, it probably wasn't quite picnic weather just yet, John handed me an essential tool for our afternoon adventure, my 'digging spoon' {aka a dessertspoon}.

After a wonderful walk & scramble up some muddy banks, all the while cliutching my digging spoon and following the lead of the riddles & John, we found our way to a slightly secluded spot, where I was required to dig a hole 20cm deep. After 20 minutes of digging, I had reached the conclusion that there wasn't anything to be found, other than a lot of rocks and worms, who I apologised to for uprooting, and thought maybe we might plant something. Our own little addition to the Blaise Castle estate.

I discovered I had reached the end of my wonderings as John provided the conclusion. As he took my hands, knelt down on one knee and asked me to stand, I held my breath as I took note of the fact, 'he's down on one knee! he's down on one knee! I wonder if anyone else has spotted this!'

As John uttered his next sentence with a look of nervousness on his face that rarely appears, I stood with muddy hands & knees, looking at the man who is to become my husband.

The reward for my digging was marriage & I cannot think of a better reward than that.

Thank you John for asking me to be your wife.

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Saturday, 6 March 2010


I can't quite believe I have done this.

Having managed not to break anything for a good long time now, I have changed that in a most dramatic way.

As I picked up my camera yesterday evening to photograph my baking process of making carrot cakes, the camera strap caught on the drawer handle, pulling the camera to the ground and smashing it.

Now, the lens wasn't exactly a fancy schmancy one, but it is the only working one I had (the other one someone kindly gave to me is water damaged & incredibly temperamental), and served me well, so I still feel the loss greatly.


Perhaps the most glorious day of the year so far.
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Thursday, 4 March 2010

out of the mouths of babes...

There is a blonde haired blue eyed beauty at Nursery who I knew from the moment I met her on her home visit that brilliance would spring forth from her lips.

She has not failed to delight, inspire and amaze me over the last six months.

I am not the only one whose attention has been captured by this self-proclaimed princess. A new boy has arrived at Nursery and the two have fallen in love.

A couple of weeks ago, on the last day of term, the blue eyed beauty's mother said to her,

'Are you going to miss Joe?'

To which she replied:

'I will, but I will carry him in my heart.'

Where do 4 year olds learn how to speak like this?!

On Wednesday, I saw Miss Princess walking around with a picture in her hand. I asked her about it, as it was unusual for it not to have made its way to the picture box. She informed me in a most nonchalent manner,

'It's a love token for Joe.'

A love token?! I asked her what a love token was and she said,

'It's a love token for Joe - he made me a picture so now I'm making him one. I want to write his name on it but I'm not sure how to.'

So there we go. There's a whole lotta love in the Nursery. Oh, I forgot to mention, there has been much talk of marriage between Miss Princess and Joe. I thought they might forget about it after the holidays but they have not. The kissing of other boys might need to stop in order for a healthy relationship to develop though...

Monday, 1 March 2010

in miniature

So it seems that all things miniature has become even more of a theme this year than I had anticipated.

Last weekend, as we browsed around the charity shops in Clifton, I spotted a beautiful set of tiny tea cups with a matching tray, for just £3.

The thing is, with being a lodger, I don't really have space to fill a home with beautiful things, but the desire to do so is still there and I'm not very good at fighting it.

I tried telling myself I didn't really need these tiny cups, but that didn't help.

So I sheepishly went over to John to show him my find, knowing exactly what his response would be:

'You know exactly what will happen if you buy those - they'll end up in my garage with the rest of your stuff.'

Well, not so....They're under my bed. But just for now. Someday they'll have a home.

But they came out to play with their newfound friends - my miniature mandarins. I have honestly never seen mandarins come in such a tiny package. You need to eat about 6 to make up 1 of your 5 a day.

So, lovely little tea cups, I might not drink tea, but you can look forward to spending a lifetime of fun with all sorts of treats. There's flowers to be held, chocolate to be made, mini m&m's to make an edible rainbow inside, and so many other possibilities.
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