Friday, 26 August 2016

Holiday Preparations

At around 5 o'clock today Dan will finish work and our holiday will begin! I am so looking forward to it. Today I'm doing the last few bits of house readying, I would have done it yesterday but I nipped into the shop just to sort out some books and ended up staying all afternoon.

First thing I cleaned the fridge and prepared a bit of salad

Put the laundry on 

Did some ironing

Saw the state of the magazine rack

 the coffee table and my craft bag

and tidied them 

Just the spare bed left to make, after my cup of tea.

Then it's fun (hopefully) in the sun for two weeks!

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

In The Shop Window

For the first time in ages I dressed the side window at the charity shop. Much as I really wanted to have an Autumn themed window, due to us having some really nice falling leaves art work and other goodies (sadly, not enough space to store them for a later window), but as Sam asked that we all let the summer continue for that little bit longer on her blog today I decided against it. 

I went instead for an August Bank Holiday weekend away instead. 

The side window is really narrow so it's hard to take pictures

the metal sign beneath the bag reads "the world is your oyster"

As long as it's sunny I think this collection would see me through the weekend, nice and casual with the linen trousers and shirt with some flat sandals, then dress it up with either of the dresses and some gold peep-toe heels. With a vintage case to hold it all on the way home!

Plus a dotty heart shaped chalkboard, a well known holiday essential!

Our holiday starts this weekend and I can't wait.

Monday, 22 August 2016

Absent - Blackpool Winter Gardens

in the foyer

Yesterday lunchtime we headed off to Blackpool to visit the brand spanking new Winter Gardens Hotel, slap bang in the centre of Blackpool. 

We entered the foyer into what was once obviously a grand space but was now furnished with bland, modern furniture, the staff were efficient, but not warm and we waited for our tour, all this in the midst of a controversy surrounding long term resident of the hotel who had fallen on hard times and had been asked to leave her suite, her home for half a century - front page news! We were escorted by a member of staff to one of the newly refurbished rooms, and that's where things became a little bit strange...

As you may have guessed, we weren't in a new hotel at all but inside, and part of, a new art installation Absent which follows the story of the once grand Winter Gardens Hotel and the demise into a new budget hotel, and the story of Premiums Bonds winner turned pauper, Maggie Morgan. We wandered from room to room, sometimes looking, sometimes joining, sometimes passing through the scenes, seeing the history and future of the building and long-term resident, and looked at ourselves in the context of both. 

I had been a little sceptical at first, but as soon as we entered the first room and events started to unfold I was hooked both by the story and, of course, by the amazing architecture and features of the Winter Gardens building - ending in the Empress Ballroom (I shared a couple of snaps here). The experience was beautiful and sad, my favourite mix. There is no way I could put into words how wonderful this melancholy experience is, firstly I don't have the skills and secondly I wouldn't want to spoil it in any way for people who may choose to visit for themselves, if you'd like a review produced by someone more wordy than myself there's one here. You can learn about dreamthinkspeak, the people behind the work too. 

Absent is on for the next three weeks. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Freebie And Bargain Of The Week

I've mentioned two of these earlier in the week.

Freebie of the week is the book sent from Ann, I haven't started reading it yet, I may save it for the upcoming holdiday. The magazine was 99p from the charity shop and I quite enjoyed it, I'll probably return it to the shop next week. 

Bargain of the week made me very happy indeed, Home Bargains were stocking brown basmati rice, £1 for a 1kg bag. We do plan to buy a few things in larger sizes now we'll be in Burnley once every two weeks or so, but for now this is the best price I can get for this rice so I am delighted. We won't need to open these for a while but I wasn't prepared to pass it up as it's something we eat frequently. 

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Treat Day!

Firstly, thank you to Ann from johnnyjumpsup, the book arrived today, I look forward to reading it. 

Dan's out for a meal this evening so I decided I'd have a treat day too. I had an appointment to get my hair chopped first thing, when I left there I just keep walking into the town. I'd checked the tide times so knew when there might be a view of the sea. 

I gave myself a budget of £5. My first port of call was the charity shop to pick up Landscape magazine I'd noticed yesterday, one I'd never heard of before, but at 99p for a current copy (Sept/Oct 2016) I thought I'd give it a go. The two ladies in the shop asked me what I was doing, so I said I was going to the beach. 

"What for?" they asked.
"Because all my friends that don't live near the beach think it's very odd that I only go every so often."
"Is there anything on?"
"Oh!" they said, looking at each other in a quizzical fashion!

So I headed off to the cafe in the old tram stop

Then I sat on the pier in the sun

I looked out at the approaching sea, although the tide is not very high today

Did a bit of people watching

Then headed onto the sand

I had a little paddle, the water was gorgeous

With the remaining £2 I treated myself to something to savour as I sit in the shade at home

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Bath Time!

This post is very much in the realm of things you only get excited about on your blog and in the privacy of your own brain

We've been talking about our new bathroom more recently as it's time to actually start thinking about what we want, so yesterday I was thinking about it and I came to a fresh conclusion. 

Our bathroom is grotty, there's no two ways about it , I mentioned a while go that we are very patched up in the shower department, for example. But then when I really thought about it I realised that the vast majority of the horrible bits are the tiles. Other than the leaky ones, others are cracked, and more are just badly fitted but that's all cosmetic, everything else works. Plus it's the only area of the house where we would, without much thought, replace original things just because they looked a bit worn. 

Our house was empty for quite some time before we moved in, that whole time the shower and bath taps were dripping, so the bath is quite stained. I've done my best with the green stripe from the tap, but the shower had left a streak down the centre of the bath, plus there were a number of rusty patches, so I turned my attention to that, armed with my trusty pumice*.


And after a small amount of rubbing

Still visible, but far better than it was before, and certainly not staring you in the face as soon as you enter the bathroom. So I suggested to Dan that we just have the tiles replaced, sort out the ceiling and fit a new shower. Dan suggested with the money we'll save he could buy a Triumph Dolomite to keep on the drive, I told him he should stick with the one he already owns!

*it's not really a pumice but it's the same idea. 

Monday, 15 August 2016

Headphone Holder

Dan has been after something to keep his headphones in as the cord is always getting tangled up in the drawer, so yesterday while I was waiting for the gymnastics to start I made a pouch for him.

I think I mentioned the other day that I had done a bit of chucking out when I sorted my new drawers, one item into the rag bag was a pair or pyjama bottoms, so I used them. I just cut the legs off tucked the top bit into the bottom bit for double thickness. I folded over the hem to make a neater top, so the bottom of the leg is the top of the pouch, and stitched the bottom closed. I did it by hand but it's still pretty strong, here's Dan holding it up, filled with two 1kg bags of flour as a test

I added a couple of buttons just for the sake of decoration

And there it is, a ten minute, no skill, jim-jam headphone pouch! We didn't really need it but it will be useful. 

I made another pouch with the other leg, and the left over pieces of fabric are in with the cleaning rags.