Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Marks and Spencer - Rediscovering a classic love!

I had a really great shopping experience today (which is rare) so I thought I would share it with you.

We have a huge Marks and Spencers just five minutes from our house so I decided to stop in and have a look as I haven't bought any new clothes recently. If you read regularly, you'll know that I have wedding to help pay for so there hasn't been much spare cash for fashion!

For those of you not in the U.K, Marks and Spencer is a British institution. They've been around for decades and apart from a short spell where they weren't doing so well, they've come back with gusto. I was amazed at how "on trend" the clothing was and even though I only went in to browse, I ended up trying on 6 items.

Items from Marks and Spencer Limited Collection and Autograph range.
I spent a lot of time looking in the kids/ teenager section as I can just about fit in the age 13-14 years clothing! The floral jeans above were only about £20 and had a great, super skinny cut - they were part of the Autograph collection. Unfortunately they were just a little too snug but they had other skinny jeans that went up to a 32 inch waist! Bit big for a kid surely?

The stripe bikini is also kids' and was only about £14. I was really tempted by it but in the end I didn't get it.

The fitting rooms are great too. The have 3 mirrors allowing you to see from every angle (something that usually puts me off!) and were somehow really flattering! The staff are always top notch and friendly which helps. They'll get you other sizes or help you order things.

Please excuse my "hobo" wear! It was a slobby day.

I ended up buying the navy, pug print dress and the sheer, spectacle print top. I bought size 10 in both which is always nice! It came to £60 and to be honest, I'm not sure I can currently afford to keep them....but I really, really want to!

Limited Collection pug print dress

Spectacle print top - Marks and Spencer

The quality feels high and the sheer top claims to be easy care. We'll see! Even though it's sheer, it somehow isn't see through.

I can't wait to wear my new items and I'm now going to have a sneaky look online at the teenagers section to see if there's anything I missed!

Monday, 25 February 2013

Sad kitty, unhappy kitty, purr, purr, purr

My little kitty Lily is very unhappy today :(

She had to have 18 of her teeth removed, leaving her with only her canines. She was born with a disease that I can't spell ( called calleesees or something) that affects the gums and causes her soreness. The vet suggested it was time to have them removed so in she went this morning.

I left her at the vets early this morning and picked her up this afternoon looking like she had been hit by a car. She was still quite dazed from the anaesthetic so I put on the heating and set up her basket in the kitchen.

Lily had 18 teeth removed

I think the word on the fridge says it all!! I was a little worried about her as she had blood all round her mouth but after a few minutes she cried for some food and ate nearly a whole (mini) tin of pate type stuff. So obviously she isn't feeling too bad!

She had been on a heat pad at the vets so I warmed up my lavender diplodocus (microwaveable dinosaur!) to put in her bed. She wasn't overly impressed though....

Dinosaur in a cat basket - standard.
I can only imagine how confusing is must be to be taken to a strange place, knocked out and then to wake up and find all your teeth have gone! Poor little thing. My other cat is obviously very concerned for her.....he keeps scratching at the kitchen door. Probably more interested in seeing whether he's missing out on some food!

So he's been getting cuddles with daddy as a distraction.

Kitty says no!

Unfortunately, he has a low attention span for cuddles and told daddy to talk to the paw!

I thought most of my readers would love to hear about my kitties as I'm a crazy cat lady and I'm pretty sure most of you are too :)

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Wedding play lists - how not to fall out!

Dear readers,
                     I like to think that my fiance and I agree about most of the details for our wedding (or maybe he just can't be bothered to argue most of the details!) but one thing we can't agree on is the music.
We have VERY different taste in music. I like the 60s and 70s and mid 90s indie.....he likes rock and the 80s and Pink Floyd. We can agree on The Beatles and Queen (let's face it - who doesn't like them?) but that's almost as far as it goes. We can seriously argue and even fall out about the rest of it.
So how do we go about choosing "mutual" music?

We need to pick a first dance song and also agree on a few hours worth of music for the reception. I think the music should be recognisable to everyone (young and old) and have lyrics that you can sing along to. He would rather have the songs that he knows and likes, but that would have your average granny turning off their hearing aid!

No one likes a dancing dad....

I do think he's right in pointing out that it's our wedding and we should have what we like.....but how far do you take that?

We've started the process by finding a website that lets you create your own playlist. That way, you and your beloved can search for songs you both like and just add them to a play list with the click of a button. Youtube is also really helpful if one of you has never heard of the song that the other is suggesting!

As for the all important "first dance," we are still undecided. What would you suggest? What did you have at your wedding?

And how on earth do you pick the music for one of the most important days of your life?!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

You are cordially invited.....

I've had a few days off work recently to relax, which means that I've had some time to do some wedding planning!

I'll admit, the planning had started to become a bit of a chore as there is so much to do but now that I've made a few more decisions, I can enjoy it again.

We've managed to narrow down the choices on the photographer, the transport and the dj, and now I've moved on to invitations!!

vintage invitations

I've found some printable invitations on line (I'm not going to share where!) but I'm torn between a few of the designs and also which colour combinations to go for. I would love to have a grey and yellow theme as that's my current colour crush but I don't think that would photograph very well. The other choice is a mix of turquoise, orange and pinks.

I've also been thinking about things like guest books and flowers......In Hobby Craft at the moment they are selling some white branches that would make an awesome guest book tree sort of thing. I think I could make this myself in some way though so I'm not going to share too many of the details!!!

alternative guest book
Guest book trees £19.99 Hobby Craft

I also really like the idea of a tree or print that your guests leave their fingerprints on in place of the leaves. However, it would be nice to have room for a little message from them too.

Bug guest book print

The only things to choose after all this are the fiddly bits like favours and table plans! My advice to anyone planning a wedding is to run away and have a secret ceremony! There is soooo much to plan if you want to have a big day with all your family and friends involved.

 But I wouldn't change a thing so far!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Bridalplasty - oh my.

Stop what you're doing. I've found the most amazing car crash tv programme EVER.

It's called Bridalplasty and you can find it on the Sky Living channel if you're in the U.K.

The whole idea behind the show is for the 12 contestants to compete in challenges to win plastic surgery and items for their "perfect" wedding. Each week, they all vote to eliminate the "bottom" bride and the one left standing at the end gets all the items they've picked and all the plastic surgery on their list.
The twelve misfits
In case you're wondering, car crash tv is the kind of tv that you know is going to be awful but you can't help but take a look. Bridalplasty certainly has that one covered....

Apparently, the show aired on American tv in 2010 so unfortunately, whilst researching for this blog post, I accidentally found out who won.....but that won't stop me from watching the rest of the episodes!

The star of the show is clearly "Jenessa." I'm guessing her parents couldn't decide between calling her Jenny or Vanessa, and so Jenessa was unfortunately born. She's the slightly ginger looking one in the turquoise dress above. Jenessa is one scheming little minx. (That's putting it nicely because my grandparents are reading...) She's the girl that gives other girls a bad name.

Unlike Big Brother, the contestants are allowed to discuss nominations so Jenessa is quick to set up an alliance with 3 of the other girls. Then she cleverly "puppeteers" the other girls into voting for whoever she would like to see evicted! As much as you know you should hate her, you kind of have to give her some kudos for not caring about looking like a b*tch on national tv.

Now, I'm not saying that there is anything wrong with plastic surgery. If I had the money going spare then I'd probably get my bumpy nose fixed....! What I object to is the girls crooning on about how they are trying to get the perfect wedding by looking perfect for their fiances who quite clearly love the girls just the way they are!

What these girls are really competing for is surgery and 15 minutes of fame. Sure, life has been hard for some of them. One girl has a fiance who has been in Iraq for months and she is sacrificing the chance to meet him at the airport to spend 4 months away from him getting surgery.....

And a couple of the girls are already married!! But sadly, they had to rush their wedding days because of various reasons and sadly haven't had their "perfect" day. Boo hoo.

My favourite part of the show is at the end when one girl gets the sack. The presenter says: "Your journey ends here. You wedding will still go ahead, it just won't be perfect."


Thursday, 14 February 2013

Valentines Day at Marwell Zoo

Happy Valentines Day everyone! Big hugs to all the single people :)

I decided that it would be nice for me and my fiance to have a day out together so I took him to Marwell Zoo near Winchester as a surprise. We were really lucky with the weather and I had prepared a packed lunch to save us a bit of money. The ticket price is quite reasonable in the winter (£12.70) but the food and drink in the cafe is hellishly expensive!

We saw most of my favourite animals (the sand cats, meerkats, big fluffy ferocious cats etc) but the tamarind monkeys were hiding or being cleaned. I wanted to cuddle most of the animals but they weren't so impressed by me!

Marwell Zoo
Ralph the penguin!
I'm not entirely sure why this little dude was wearing an O'Neill wetsuit....maybe he was cold or has trouble swimming! Either way, I was tempted to lean over and smuggle him out of the zoo.

Another of my favourites are the red pandas. Last time I went they were all hiding up in the trees but today they were nice and close (and grab-able!) and willing to have their photos taken.

marwell zoo
Red pandas
The little panda on the left had a bad itch and also no fluff on the end of his tail. Poor little guy needs a hug, right?

The right hand one was having a good run around and came right up to us, but when i got the camera out the little bugger kept moving!

Action shot of the fidgety red panda!
Here are some of the other beauties that we saw:

Mr Meerkat

Snoozing leopard - one cool cat!
marwell zoo
Five giraffes crowding around the hay

Massive rhinos - these guys were HUGE!

And then there's the obligatory shot of us :)

The happy couple
The happy couple!

I also got woken up this morning with a huge bunch of flowers and breakfast in bed. Lucky old me!

We had a really lovely day and it was nice to get out and about in the sunshine as I've had the lurgy for the past few days! I 've been thanking God for "Covonia" cough syrup and mostly just recuperating.

How did you spend Valentines Day?

Friday, 8 February 2013

Prozac Nation

I've just finished reading "Prozac Nation" by Elizabeth Wurtzel for the second or third time and the epilogue really struck a chord with me. Elizabeth discusses the ease with which prozac is prescribed these days to the point where you can be in a car full of people and everyone except maybe the driver is on prozac.....
Whilst I was at university, I had invited my best friend home with me and we were eating our dinner at the table with my brother. My mum came in and asked us if we had all taken our pills! All three of us were taking prozac (or the equivalent) at that time. It seems like for my generation, real life is too much like hard work.

Elizabeth also talks about how even a friends' dog has been prescribed prozac. Today, my little cat Lily went to the vets to get her teeth removed. Luckily for her, it had to be postponed for another couple of weeks.....but whilst I was there, I purchased (purrrchased!) a pet plug-in that is supposed to relieve stress for animals.

I may have mentioned before that Lily does not get on well with Thomas. He chases her and she shows her displeasure by weeing on my cooker. Lovely. So hopefully this natural scented plug-in will be the answer. Apparently, it also works on humans so we might all benefit!

Thomas likes to retreat to the basket when he's been told off! He's a good kitty really....he just likes to play :)

Has anyone else had problems with unhappy kitties? What did you do? Do plug-ins work? Help me!

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Home sweet home xxx

Well, it seemed like it was a**hole day at work today! Every customer that came to the till was severely obnoxious. Why is it that some days bring out the worst in everyone?
  But anyway, that part of the day is over and I can focus instead on the progression being made at home.......

My second bedroom now has an actual bed in it thanks to my best mate giving up hers! It's nice to have a room that looks as it should and not just somewhere to dump things. I painted the walls white so the room is really lovely and bright.

Obviously, it would be nice if you couldn't see all that stuff under the bed but I'm working on that!

We've also been choosing wallpaper for the lounge and I have a new (well, retro/vintage) sideboard to put my books on - and the boys' record collection of course.

The wallpaper needed to be green to go with the other three walls that I'd already painted and we narrowed it down to these:

They can all be bought from B and Q for about £10 - £15 a roll. We've picked the one on the right by the tv as THE one as it seems to go the best with all the other stuff we have. Sorry these photos are so grainy - they're Instagrammed. (For my Nan and Grandma's sake - Instagram is a camera phone app that you could both get on your tablets.....) (And "app" means application...!)

Here's my sideboard:

I can't wait to get a few retro ornaments to fill the shelves and jazz it up a bit.

So it's all coming along nicely. Next stop on the calendar is Valentines Day.....and maybe a blog post on Valentines gifts?

Watch this love filled space <3 p="">

Sunday, 3 February 2013

25 facts about me!

Evening! This post has been doing the rounds on a lot of blogs recently so I thought I should jump on the bandwagon.....

1) When I was young, I wanted to be a vet until I realised I was scared of animals.

2) I also really liked horses when I was younger until one bit me and threw me off. Now I think they are seriously evil.

3) My fiance is currently asleep on the sofa. I whispered in his ear "buy Becky a Mulberry bag for Valentines Day" in the hope that it would subliminally influence him.

4) I'm currently addicted to "Candy Crush Saga" on Facebook and Android. Literally addicted. I can't turn it off.

5) I suffered with depression between the ages of 14 and 23. Now I just suffer with stress.

6) I have a tendency to over share. Everyone probably knows every detail of everything I do!

7) I'm really gullible because I don't understand why people would lie. Luckily, no one has realised this yet.

8) I have an excellent memory for random details. I think I might have a photographic memory. If I can picture it, I can remember it.

9) I like to "sort" things. I would love to sit and sort a pile of papers into chronological order.

10) I'm quite obsessive about a lot of things. I don't like it when people leave "time" on the microwave. And my sofa cushions have to be in a certain order.

11) I used to self harm. Very few people know this. Mental illness should be more open for discussion.

12) I did a degree in fine art but I quit in my second year.

13) My whole family is good at learning different languages.

14) I'm left handed.

15) (Gee, 25 is a lot of facts...)

16) I seem to have felt "ill" in some way throughout the whole of January.

17) I wish I had been born in Italy. I love Italian food.

18) I thrive in the sun. Winter just doesn't do it for me.

19) I'm an eighth Italian and an eighth Austrian. And proud.

20) I'm good at spelling and grammar. I should have been a proof reader in the days before spell check was invented!

21) I used to be a man. Only kidding.

22) I think I'm funny. I'm not.

23) I feel I was born in the wrong era. I would totally have embraced the 60s and 70s.

24) My favourite song EVER is "Smash" by the Goo Goo Dolls.

25) I went to my first festival aged 14. It was V96. Pulp was the headlining act.

Well, hope you enjoyed all that! Is there anything else you'd like to know? Remember, I like to over share! :)