A weekend at home

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I arrived back in London at 9pm last night, cold, tired and with an incipient head cold, which has since turned into an actual head cold. This morning I found mouse droppings in the kitchen. Shudder.

Peppermint oil and sonic mouse deterrers aside, here’s a quick (read: very long) post about my time at home. At what point, I wonder, does the house you grew up in stop being home? I’m trying not to call it home any more – I left eight years ago, we’ve lived in our flat for four years now, I’m getting married this year for God’s sake – but I still sort of think of it as my real home, even though I left Scotland as soon as I could to move to London.

Anyway, we had a lovely time. The weather obliged by being beautiful, except for Friday, and I might be in the minority here but I enjoyed having the chance to light a fire and snuggle up that day. We did lots. We walked in the hills, we went for tea in Pitlochry, we barbecued, and I read four Miss Marple novels. And on Saturday, we went to the most beautiful bluebell wood I’ve ever seen. It was truly breathtaking. I mean, all bluebell woods are gorgeous, but this was something else.

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Finding Aid #2

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  1. Cooking has been on my mind a lot recently, and I’ve enjoyed making this recipe for a really delicious, easy chocolate cake. The courgette weirdly works, promise! I left the nuts out though and topped with strawberries.
  2. This moisturiser was my favourite last year and it is this year too. The scent is gorgeous, you only need a little, and it lasts all day. When I use it I always end up wondering what the amazing smell is and then realising that it’s me! Last night, mine tragically fell off the shelf INTO THE TOILET so I’m going to have to invest in some more.
  3. The summery weather recently has me thinking about country gardens, and one weekend soon I intend on going here.
  4. I recently read this article found on this lovely blog, and I wanted to share it here. What he says about love completely captures something I’ve often felt but never yet articulated.
  5. Everlane sent me an email this morning to say that they are shipping to the UK for two weeks only! I immediately forwarded it to all the people I think might buy me something from them for my birthday – ever resistant to summer clothing, I’m hoping for this and this.

My thoughts on marrying ‘young’.

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This year, on November 5th, I will be getting married. I will be 26, he will be 25 (scandal!). And whilst for many that might not be young, for me, it is. My own parents didn’t marry until they were 33 and 35, his parents until they were 30. We’re the first of our friends to get married, and whilst I know they’re happy for us, I also know that they think we’re a little young. We’ve been together for over five years, and it took me several of those years to admit that this could be a successful long term relationship, not because I felt any personal qualms, but because the narrative I think I’ve mainly heard has been that you don’t marry the person you met at 19, and if you do, it probably won’t be successful. Continue reading “My thoughts on marrying ‘young’.”

A Mid-Week Birthday

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This Tuesday was Jamie’s birthday, and both of us took the day off. At least, I took the day off – his company gives you your birthday off in addition to standard leave, which I would feel bitter about if I didn’t already get a LOT of holiday (perks of working in a university).

We didn’t have anything planned – we went to the Isle of Wight at the weekend as my main present to him – so when we woke up we had a slow morning. I popped to the new fancy coffee and cycling cafe on the corner of our street for some croissants (Archway is currently undergoing extensive gentrification, and I’m taking advantage of the food before we get priced out and have to move to Zone 6) and we had a relaxed birthday breakfast while Jamie unwrapped his presents. Then we faffed about for a bit, then we went for a seafood lunch, and then we went to the Chelsea Physic Garden. It was pretty and peaceful and somewhere new and I took lots of photos.  Continue reading “A Mid-Week Birthday”

Three Books to Read in Bed

 

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I read in bed every single night. I always have, it calms me down, it lets me escape for a little bit, if I don’t I can’t sleep. It also has the added benefit of meaning that I get through a lot of books, which makes me feel well-read.

But! For me, choosing books for bedtime reading is a bit of a fine art. You probably don’t want anything too gripping, and definitely nothing too emotive or sad, because otherwise cue overwrought insomnia. Those books (which I love too!) I reserve for when I’m on holiday, when I’m apparently immune to sadness.

Now, I realise that most people are more emotionally mature than this, so probably don’t need to read cheery books in order to sleep at night. But on the off-chance that anyone is looking for some beautifully written, happy books for bedtime, here are three recommendations:

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Finding Aid #1

So here’s a little round-up of some things I’ve seen and liked recently. I’m calling the series ‘Finding Aid’ because I’m an archivist, geddit?

  1. I’ve been dropping hints (more like instructions), about these earrings for my birthday. I feel like they will make me look a bit like a rhinoceros, but in a good way?
  2. I just finished reading this, and loved it, even though I’m not usually a fan of non-fiction. It’s the perfect blend of information, recipes, and travel, and I’m booking a holiday to Sicily in September off the back of it.
  3. My watch strap broke recently, just after I got used to wearing it again. So I’m eying this as a replacement.
  4. Today, if I can move off the sofa and get dressed, I’m going to go to this exhibition. Everyone I know who’s seen it thinks it’s amazing, and I want to get in on the fun.
  5. I’m debating whether or not to buy these shoes. After buying a pair of New Balances last year (predictable), I’m a trainer convert, but I can still never tell if they will make me look cool or give me enormous clown feet.

Bank Holiday in Brighton

Today we woke up, had a nice cup of tea in bed, and decided to go to Brighton. (Despite having lived in London for nearly seven years, and saying we should go nearly every Bank Holiday, we’ve never actually made it, so this was pretty tremendous.) After a disastrous train journey which involved travelling on the more expensive ticket without using the fast train, we arrived.

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Continue reading “Bank Holiday in Brighton”