So Thursday is normally yoga morning, and my only regular exercise of the week. So it usually hurts. Luckily Maggie's moving house at the moment and had to rush off and meet plumbers, so it was cancelled. After shifting gear to a lazy day lolling about the house eating, Lisa messaged asking if I wanted to go Christmas shopping. Well, the lolling had it's appeal but so did hanging out with Lisa. So off we headed to Kingston. Turns out I've been driving in the grotty end of Kingston and have totally missed the nice bit. It's quite quaint, and has a cute Christmas market going on at the mo. Instead of wandering around that we headed directly to TK Maxx (our favourite shop!) and spent a full two hours there - bliss! I decided to do a vlog of the trip so got some hilarious footage of us in the changing rooms looking frights in some bizarre outfits from their Gold Label designer section. Was a bit weird filming in front of people as I've never done that before, but we got over it pretty quickly. Lisa was a natural! Am just editing the film so look out for it :)
Click here for the video!
Then back home and they turned the Christmas lights on!! Feeling Christmassy at last and have bought my first present. All downhill from here. Seems we have 16 for Christmas Day and then 21 on the 27th. That should be interesting. Feel a visit to Cook coming on!
Am quite excited as I sent a random message to Tricia Cusden who runs Look Fabulous Forever. It's a brand that produces makeup for older women. She also posts self-help videos about how to do makeup, clothes etc as your body and face are changing. She's had over a million hits on Youtube and runs a very successful business. She also lives in Wimbledon which is just down the road.
I figured there was no harm in asking, so wrote to see if she fancied doing a video together. I'd noticed most of her models were grey/blonde and I'm dark so suggested me as an alternative and someone who basically has done the same thing with her makeup for about 20 years. I only checked my messages yesterday and turns out she'd written back immediately asking me to join a filming session on Monday as they were specifically looking for a dark-haired model. Initially I was stoked, but then realised it was Tuesday already :(
Undaunted, I called her and after a lovely chat she's invited me over to her place early December to shoot a Christmas Party Makeup look. CAN'T WAIT!
Very strange 24 hrs.
Was just about to go to bed on Friday when I checked my phone and found out what had happened in Paris. We lived there for 6 years, so know lots of people still there, and the places that were targeted. Added to that my eldest daughter was there last weekend and my husband left there on Friday at 2pm. All very close to home and I think the whole world is as shocked as I was.
For me Paris is a city of romance, not of terror and this picture says it all. It was just a regular day in Paris and the photo was actually of my three girls, who I’ve cropped off. It was only afterwards that I noticed the bride and groom in the background <3
Long live freedom and equality. Bring on peace.
Saturday started off with me insisting Adrian had some eye drops as his eye was all bloodshot and gross. He gave in, I found two bottles of eye drops both called something very similar, picked one and squirted it in his eye. He ran to the sink howling and starting frantically rising it out. Jenny and I both thought he was taking the mick (as is his wont). Turns out I had squirted ear drops in his eye by mistake which burned like the devil. Should've put my glasses on...Jenny googled it and apparently lots of other people don't put their glasses on either, so it was easy to find out what to do. Just 10 solid mins of rinsing it. He then dried his face, looked at me and asked how did it look. I lied and said great. He seemed disappointed til he looked in the mirror and realised he looked like Rocky. On a bad day. Oops.
There was just time to recover before we were due to head off into London, this time at night. I admit to a slight feeling of trepidation after what had happened in Paris, but pushed that horrid thought to one side and just remained vigilant. I hardly ever go into London, so twice in one week is living the life! Have to say that since we last lived here 20 odd years ago, London has improved sooooo much. It's really a cool place to go to, with something interesting around every corner. And not many grotty bits left as far as I can tell. Proud to be British!
We went to dinner at The Gaucho Bar by Tower Bridge, an Argentine restaurant. (My 50th birthday present from friends who’d lived in BA with us - the birthday that just never ends as Jenny calls it!) It was very nostalgic, with all the animal skin decor and the familiar cuts of meat. The food was delish (the lomo is a must), and I highly recommend it, not just for the food but also for the stunning view.
The last couple of days have been exciting but mostly only the kind of exciting where I hug myself and grin at the dog. Because I launched my site! Through Facebook I invited friends to like my page and am just about to break the 300 likes barrier :-D It's quite fun watching all the activity and I've learned loads about google analytics and all sorts of random things. However that's only exciting for me!
Apart from that, the most exciting thing I've done outside in the last few days is walk the dog in the autumn leaves. I admit to kicking along in my wellies and looking like a plonker. Lily mostly ignored me.
HOWEVER, today was vastly more exciting as I went out to a lovely posh lunch with my yoga buddies. Perfect excuse to get out the decent coat and swan up to town. We went to The Goring, in London - the hotel Catherine Middleton got married from. Super lush and delish. Highly recommend it for a special treat or if you are visiting the UK and want a very English experience, to stay or for afternoon tea. And apparently the only hotel in London with a garden. Who knew?
One of the worst things about moving a lot, and about living in a country where you don't speak the language, is finding a decent hairdresser. It rates up there will finding a new gynaecologist. The number of times I've been to get a cut, taken a photo of what I want, explained at great length (sometimes also with the aid of a dictionary) and ended up with what I most definitely did NOT want - well, too many times to count. And the worst part always was that the hairdresser would just stand there going, 'yes, that's what you wanted'. Like you're a pillock. And there's nothing you can do about it, as it's basically got to grow out or you have to get it cut shorter. So you slink off, having PAID FOR WHAT YOU DON'T WANT (turns out perhaps you are a bit of a pillock) and then 6 weeks later you have to go over it all again somewhere else.
Well, coming back to England and I found the best hairdresser ever first time! Lolly is fab, and does exactly what I asked for, or an improved version of that. In the last year or so I've discovered a lot of other people who go to Lolly, so I guess I was just lucky :) Figure it was about time!
So I got a small leak out of the base of the loo. Nothing gross, just clear water. Took me two weeks to find a plumber that would actually call me back (turns out this is their busiest time of year what with people just turning on their heating etc). Finally the guy arrives and ends up destroying my bathroom :( Seems loo was fitted badly, so now instead of a fixed loo, or even what we had which was a loo that was working, albeit with a patch of water on the side, I now have a loo that is completely disconnected as have to get a tiler in to retile the wall before it can be plumbed back in. Eeeeeh gads, let's just hope it's not the tilers busy season!
What weird weather we've had. It should have been on Halloween to make it extra-spooky, but only started that night and got progressively worse until it was like an old horror movie. Couldn't help taking this photo of after-school football players. Literally only 3:30pm - freaky! Also proves that some people will play sport whatever the conditions! All I wanted to do was get home and curl up on the sofa with a nice glass of wine...
SOOOOOO exciting! Having been out of the country for 20 years, and missed everything from Princess Diana's death, to the royal wedding to the Olympics, we decided to go for it and buy tickets to the Rugby Cup final. Calculating that we'll probs we dead before it comes back to England was also a factor ;-) It was the most amazing occasion, with a phenomenal atmosphere and crazily good game, so definitely money well spent.
Also managed to take this daft photo, which I realised afterwards not only works for the rugby, but also for life!