Thursday, 16 February 2012

looking up

I make a lot of new year's resolutions. I also do not achieve a lot of new year's resolutions.
On my list this year, sandwiched between 'learn to braid' and 'improve french to the level of being able to discuss the economic crisis with Sarkozy if and when that opportunity arises' was a seemingly simple goal: 'Look up when i walk'.

When I told my friend Christy about my resolutions, he responded with 'yeah... you're always looking down with your arms folded when you walk. you actually look really sad and lost all the time.'
gosh. really? how tragic.

But, i started trying to look up more and tried to notice more things as i walked along.
It's made a huge difference to my appreciation of London, it really has.
(it has also made a lot of people ask me for directions and want to talk to me about animal's rights and giving money to save the trees... but, that's cool i guess...)

This week I have tried extra hard to uncross my arms and have been rewarded by seeing such fun things on my walk to and from work.

...Now, to learn to braid and become fluent in french...
I've walked past this building every day for the past 6 months. This week I noticed the sign. 

Taxi drivers in this area are all desperate to share their views on this building and how long it's taken to complete the top 

Yes. Let's adore and endure each other. Yes please. 
I walk over this bridge each day. And every day i think about the part in Harry Potter where it collapses. It's still very pretty though.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

sledges are here!!

Today, our SLEDGES arrived. weeeeeeeeee! Despite being mocked and ridiculed at the bank for my purchase and being quite awkward to carry on the bus... it was the highlight of my day.
I had to wait for hooours for alex to come home so we could open them and play pretend sledging. Hurrah for sledges!!!
And now it's snoooowing!! weeeeeeee!

Bring on Saturday sledging at the Heath again!


Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Move: more travel inspiration

This, i love.
i love that i recognise so many of these places.
i love that it makes me excited to see more.
i love it all.
so good.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Snow day

On the weekend, it snowed in London! SNOW!!!!
The view from our flat went from being the kind of place where someone vomits on the stairs, to a winter wonderland of powdery fun and excitement. White and glorious and glistening in an 'Edward Cullen in the sun' type way.... weeeeeeeee!

On Sunday morning, Alex and I met Deggbo at Hampstead Heath and went sledding. Actually, no. That's a lie. I learnt that sledding is an American word and actually English people say sledging... Weird. But what can you expect from people who also say 'I was sat down' rather than 'I was sitting down' but, I digress. Who cares about grammar when there is snooooow!!!

Sledging at the Heath on a snow day like being in a giant cool snow gang. We were all best friends. Everyone was nice to everyone else. Oh Sledgers. At one point a dog named Jessie, who alex said 'looks just like my old dog, except the colour. and the size. and it wasn't actually that type of dog....' stole one of Deggbo's gloves and ran up and down the hill wanting to be chased. Oh, it really brought the sledging community even closer together. We laughed. A man chased Jessie. Jessie barked. Deggbo's hand got cold. What fun.
We said things like 'yeah you got some sick air on that run' and 'woah i thought you were going to die when you hit that kid, but you survived! woooo!' we were like sledging CHAMPIONS!
Even when I spun our sledge out of control and threw Alex into a thorn bush it was still fun... at least for me.

On the BIG hill it was absolute carnage. There were people trying to sled with Ikea plastic bags, and Foxton's For Sale signs, boogie boards and bits they'd ripped of plastic bins on the way in... There was even a drawer. Seriously, someone brought a drawer to the Heath with the idea of using it to sled down the hill. Winner. My favourite was a man who had literally wrapped himself in plastic and then threw himself down the slope. Hilarious. Awesomeness.
Pre-fun lesson about sledding vs sledging. Oh, english friend you're so useful.

About 30seconds after this i threw alex into a thorn bush. lucky she was wearing her sleeping bag jacket.

Deggbo was a bit more hardcore on his plastic-lid sled... he was into jumps and sick air. Yes...

Moments after this, he nearly killed that girl in pink. Low point? Hilarious community bonding point!

His technique was interesting.

On the BIG hill, people were crazy. The snow wasn't as good as our first hill, but it was like a giant festive street party so we stayed.

When we came home we promptly ordered sledges online. Yep. Next snow day? We'll be ready.


Thursday, 2 February 2012

Derbyshire: Libby's 30th and shootin some clay pigeons

Last weekend we went to a strange and magical place called Derbyshire for my friend Libby's 30th birthday. It turns out i cannot say Derbyshire. at all. i learnt pretty early on to just say 'derbyshhhi...' and then just fade off. 
In my defence, it's a tricky word to say. like squirrel. or Liss'.
That aside, Derbyshire was great. 

Some highlights included:
1. Derbyshire is where the Princess Bride was filmed. I looove the Princess Bride. It is also the setting for 'Pemberley' from Pride and Prejudice. I don't love Pride and Prejudice (is that controversial?) So, when the opportunity to go to Pemberley was raised, i chose to go clay pigeon shooting instead. CLAY PIGEON SHOOTING!!! 
(and before you wonder, no - the clay things weren't shaped to look like pigeons, i already asked. oh)

Shooting was awesome. We were given a girly gun (which still gave me a bruise on my shoulder. oh.) and a VERY helpful coach who quite literally positioned the gun, helped us line it up and basically told us when to shoot. Yet, we still missed more than we hit. Regardless, we were like warriors. Like soldiers. Like shooting HEROS. yes.
The boys had manly guns and had to do everything themselves. suckers.

I learnt lots of things about shooting. The saddest one being that the clay pigeons didn't look like pigeons, but rather this... 

bah. I also learnt that Elissa and I have non-dominant eyes (?) which means that we squint the wrong eye so our alignment is off (this actually could explain a few things...) I also learnt that Elissa seemed to have an 'issue' closing her left eye, so the shooting coach but masking tape over her glasses to 'help'. It was a dark time. ha.

I also learnt that shooting people are craaaazy. The boys' shooting coach said things like "You don't want to be beaten by a woman unless you're paying for it" and "How do you get a fat woman into bed?  Piece of Cake". He also told a scandalous story about his cross-dressing house lodger, which made everyone concentrate more on their shooting...

yes. he really just said that. i know.
I also learnt that a shooting club house is somewhere i prob shouldn't go again.... woah.

Despite that, it was such fun. At one point, I hit four clay disk things in a row and can honestly say I have never been more excited about anything. ever. weeeeeeeee!

This is the face of a joyful shooter.
These are the faces of many joyful shooters

Rob was suspiciously good at shooting clay disks. Almost as if he'd been practising...

2. Libby turned 30 in style.
Libby is insane, and threw a 30th birthday dinner like no one else could; she had rented the most amazing castle (which, awesomely was Florence Nightingale's childhood home! oooooh!) for 20 people to have a Black Tie Country Glamour feast. Yes. It was amazing. She had every element covered... including requesting that our group bring 84 eggs with us (we nervously brought 90 eggs as the Sainsbury in Derbyshhhhi only sells eggs in boxes of 15. weird? yes. weird. we literally discussed "but libby said 84! what are we going to do with the extra 6??" indeed.)

The greatest thing about having such a large group in a castle is that you get dressed for your Black Tie banquet in your lux rooms then sort of wander down the stairs without need for keys or wallets or phones. win. i loved it. A bit Downton Abbey if you will.... except at one point i went back to my room, put my ugg boots on under my ball gown and rejoined the party. win indeed.

wall paper for the win?

Birthday girl glam

men in bow ties. what fun.

3. And then... then... because Libby is pretty awesome, her party had FIREWORKS. i freaking LOVE fireworks. nothing makes me happier (well, except perhaps hitting 4 clay pigeons in a row or wearing ugg boots under a ball gown....) It was amazing. And, to be honest, they were a million times better than our efforts in Mansfield last year... but that's fair enough because Libby's birthday was epic and deserved epic fireworks. 

Elissa captured some of the highlights on video (keep in mind she may still have had masking tape on her glasses at this point...) and my favourite is Duncan's voice in the background saying "This is so irresponsible!" ha. oh Duncan.

Oh Duncan. x
All in all, bonza weekend: i drove a car (and waited until the drive home to google 'what is the speed limit in the UK'.... oops), shot a fake bird, brought the cost-per-wear on my Carla Zampatti gown down a notch and got to celebrate Libby's EPIC party throwing skills. Well played.

'Til next year xoxo

The wallpaper portraits were actually raised. like felt. epic.


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