Friday, 26 June 2009

Super vantastic!!

So you've seen the before photos...

Here are the afters!!

So exciting!! Dave is out on his work leaving do, and I'm still recovering from my one (= complete bender on Wednesday night). Tomorrow we head to Preston for a last listen to the band and our last Manchester goodbyes, and then we're running for the border and hope to be in Scotland by nightfall!

Won't be writing again for a while I don't think, so take care and thanks for reading!!

Ju xxx

Friday, 19 June 2009

XKCD friday!

From here

Have a great weekend! we are going camping with friends in the Lake District and, if the weather holds, are going to attempt to walk along here without falling off:

(if you're thinking it must be wider than it looks... yeah, it's really not.)
Also - AMAZING photos floating around the internet this week - by Dina Goldstein, and so far seen here and here...check them out. Rapunzel in particular I think is phenomenal.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Fun things : Stress

Signs that I am stressed:
  • Hair falling out
  • Glands have come up
  • Not sleeping
  • When am sleeping, have screaming fits at Dave in which I say that I despise him and use words that I don't normally use.
  • Feel sick 72% of the time.
(nb: this is not intended to be a whinge - I just think it's interesting how predictable my body is. The last time this happened was before I left the UK for NZ last year, and when leaving NZ the first time in 2007)

Thankfully, I know that the second we finish saying our goodbyes I will be 100% ok and back to normal (i.e. have screaming fits at Dave when awake, not asleep). And in the meantime, these are weeks full of exciting purchases that make me think I am George out of "Five Run Away Together". The van is our own little Kirrin Island.

Fun things list:
  • solar shower
  • solar power charger
  • purple fold-out sofa bed contraption
  • teeny tiny gas cooker stove contraption
  • twine
  • shovel
  • grater, peeler, can opener, utility knife
  • plastic bowls, plates, and cutlery
  • powdered milk and instant mash potatoes (eww)
  • stockpiled canned things. I'm half tempted to remove the labels so that every day is a surprise

Minus the physical manifestations of stress, this is a lot of fun!

Friday, 12 June 2009

XKCD Friday!!

From here

We're off to Paul and Ang's tonight, and then Helena is visiting from Dublin for the weekend! lots of busy van things to do tomorrow, so there should be an update (and hopefully some pics) on Monday to show for it.
And yes, Katie - it is vantastic!

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Mmm, yum!

We just had a lovely relaxed weekend with Mel, who was up from London to visit. I tried my hand at red velvet cupcakes for her birthday – aren’t they cute?!

The ones from Hummingbird Bakery have a delicious cream cheese icing on their famous red velvet cupcakes that I couldn’t replicate, due to a bit of Sainsbury’s confusion between crème freche and “soft cheese”. The butter icing was still yum though.

On Sunday we headed out to Lyme Park and Hall – which was used as Pemberley in the {excellent} BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. It was pretty, but rainy and blustery – so possibly not the best day for it. The Sunday roast afterwards was superb though.

We have a sofa bed (for the van) today! Exciting!!

Friday, 5 June 2009

Friday Van Update! (sorry, not XKCD today)

Sorry for the intermittent posting – while I love blogging things are crazy right now, so although I’ll try and check in every couple of days it might not actually happen.

We leave in 3 weeks. I am nearly wetting my pants from an equal mix of excitement and fear – I know this trip is going to be amazing and life-changing (even more so than the last 2 years which, frankly, have been amazing enough (more amazing than I first expected anyway. The whole leaving New Zealand thing took me a while to get my head around)) but I’m still terrified. (sorry for the excessive brackets). ()()()().

One thing I am COMPLETELY sick of though, is saying goodbyes. I don’t deal with goodbyes very well, and am already getting teary at the thought of saying goodbye to my dance teacher, who I have actually had very little to do with. I am that girl that cries when saying goodbye to the neighbours cat. The cat (and the dance teacher) probably won’t even miss me that much. I forsee countless embarrassing goodbye sessions coming up over the next 3 weeks where I cry (nay, sob) and the good-bye-ee stands bewildered, wondering why I’m that bothered, because they only met me a handful of times. When leaving New Zealand the first time (and the second time, last year) I really struggled, and now I’m just wishing that I could mass email people and run away without saying bye to anyone. Especially some of the really good friends I’ve made while being here, because I don’t know when I’ll see them again and it Just Sucks. I wish they could all migrate with us. (I know, what a crybaby).

On a much happier and more exciting note though – ‘before’ shots of the van!!

We are having heaps of fun cleaning it up after work each night (12 years of builders grime to be removed). We even tore down the wall separating the cab from the back. We are hard core. I found a tin of blackboard paint in the kitchen cupboard, so now the shelves are mini blackboards, which is quite exciting.

The van has named himself “Brett”. We are pleased with both the Flight of the Conchords reference, and staunch nature of the name. Another van we viewed was named Ivan – I wanted to buy it simply based on that fact. Brett is fine though.

More updates to come as carpet is laid and other fittings installed! Last night I bought a solar shower and solar power ipod/phone charger. I love me some gadgets.

Monday, 1 June 2009

Books Books Books

I have been a massive fan of Margaret Atwood since 7th form English (I Did Not love the teacher, but I have to hand it to her – she did introduce me to one of the greater loves of my life). We studied what I think is one of the most interesting novels around, The Handmaid’s Tale, and in a fascinating parallel were studying it on and after September 11 – a fact that had a lot to do with me studying political science at University a year later.

Since then I have made my way through a fair bit of her other work, The Blind Assassin being my favourite of her novels. Just this weekend I finished Cat’s Eye. It was great. GREAT, actually (I'm not so hot on synonyms). Very disturbing, very moving, and I think this one should be compulsory reading for all girls aged 9-11. Well, except for that it’s an adult novel and very disturbing. But still… I bet there are more than a few young ladies who could benefit from this book. I can’t say enough about Margaret’s writing style. I adore her.

I have also just finished reading Breakfast at Tiffany’s – and now REALLY want to see the film. What a bizarre book – not at all what I expected, based on what I had heard re Audrey & co. (I am also in the middle of a love affair with Truman Capote and think his short stories are exquisite. I am currently trying to track down In Cold Blood, which I have heard is fabulous).

I can’t pick a favourite author, but Margaret and Truman are up there, together with William Golding, Aldous Huxley, George Orwell*, Brett Easton Ellis, Jodie Picoult, Paulina Simons, Jane Austen, and Marian Keyes. My favourite book? “The Rules of Attraction” by Brett Easton Ellis – the one occasion where I can’t pick a clear favourite between a book and it’s film adaptation.

Who is your favourite author? What is, if you can pick one, your favourite book? Which is your favourite film adaptation of a book?

*yes, I am aware that this reads like a book list for a black turtleneck-wearing politico study group. I was introduced to these authors in a political psychology course by the greatest lecturer I ever had, so you know… stands to reason really.

Friday, 29 May 2009

You know what’s weird?

Reading the blog of person A, a person that I do not know at all but who happens to live in the same country I used to live in, only to read a comment by person B, click through to the blog of person B, and discover that it’s someone from my not-so-distant past. It really is a small world.
The last time I spoke to B was maybe 3 years ago. I know that at the time we disagreed strongly about something – and while I can’t really remember exactly on what terms we parted (no, it’s not an old love interest), for some reason I know with absolute certainty that we aren’t Friends now. Except on Facebook, but that doesn’t really count. Perhaps it is because our friendship was a high school one that petered out naturally, perhaps we are completely different people now compared to who we were back then, perhaps there is nothing more to it than that, but I am still sitting at my desk feeling a bit funny. Like I want to get in touch but have absolute no idea what I would say, where we would start, what would be the point, or if B would even want to speak to me anyway. Because I don’t know if we are fighting or just acquaintances-who-used-to-be-friends-once.
Is that a bit weird?
B’s blog is hilarious though. Dirty, but hilarious. Someone I would like to know.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

You know what's amazing?

This Dress is amazing. Such a simple concept too (if only I was a competent seamstress).

I am smitten. I saw it online and went into American Apparel expecting to not like it (I don't like much from AA, if I'm being honest - check this out) - expecting the material to be thin and cheap, and the cut to be all wrong for me. I was So Wrong. I can wear it, without any real issues, 10 of the 15 recommended ways.

I want this dress, and I want one for each of my friends too.

Friday, 22 May 2009

XKCD Friday!!!

Have a great weekend! It's another lovely Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK, yipee!

From here

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Suitable division of duties (or: what I like about Dave)

no, this isn't going to be a post about who does the cleaning and cooking in our relationship (though Dave does {more} than his fair share, to be fair).

On Tuesday night, properly motivated by Greece and ready to Plan Our Trip, Dave drew up a wee list of things that need to be done prior to leaving. Then he drew a neat line dividing the paper in two, assigning more than half the tasks to me. At first, in my head, I was all huh? what IS this? (a center for ants?), but then he explained that he had divided the tasks based on our strengths - that big important things like sorting visas and insurance freak me out; I get overwhelmed and end up procrastinating because doing stuff like that reminds me that I'm upping sticks and leaving the country soon. Instead, becoming immersed in details like ipod chargers, maps, and camping stoves - things that require LISTS - keep me sane and busy. Gotta love him.

He's luc
ky he was extra cool on Tuesday night though, it was not so long ago that I found out that Dave has been an avid tea drinker at work. For some time. what is going ON??? how did I not KNOW this?! it has been a confusing time
Dave making ginger moosecuits using a cookie cutter we got in Stockholm. They were delicious:

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Ah Greece

It was glorious. We really want to go back there. Work was tough today, Dave sent me photos to my work email to keep me going.

Time to leave England, I think.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Being positive

In an effort to not be so self-deprecating and negative, and inspired by these lists currently floating in the blogosphere, here is my list of 10 things that make me terribly happy: (not including specific people... obv).

1. getting the terravision bus to the airport
2. a cheese platter, a bottle of red, and one or more girlfriends
3. waiting for the curtain to come up at the theatre
4. reading letters from my sister and my gran
5. saving up really really hard for something I covet, and finally holding it in my hands
6. finding treasures at the library
7. dancing and singing giddily when I'm all by myself (a.k.a pretending to be a rock star)
8. being given a bunch of flowers
9. spending over an hour getting ready for a night out - esp if doing so with a friend
10. Christmas

image from here

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Such a shame.

On Wednesday we are going to Greece for a few days.

I desperately want to swan around wearing variations on this:

But unfortunately will probably end up looking more like this.

In my day dreams I am so stylish. This rarely never translates to how I actually look. Not that I look completely dire... I am presentable in a my-clothes-are-clean-and-fairly-innocuous kind of way, just not up there with Sienna, Giselle, or any of those other lovely ladies who can put it together. "Fashion Forward" is a term that neither I, nor my well-travelled polarfleece, are familiar with.

Dress, sandals, headband by Naomi.

Thursday, 7 May 2009


Today we're off to Coventry for the wedding of Chris and Julz! yay! I'm so excited. I have high hopes for the Britishness (Britishicity?) of the wedding ... I hope to see a lot of hats, a turkey curry buffet, and Hugh Grant moping around looking foppish. Justify Full Fingers crossed best-man Andy decides to crank out the "fears and recriminations" speech.

Help please!

Since time immemorial I have had Big Issues with my hair. There was the unfortunate shortening incident in 1997, closely followed by the red dye disaster of 1998. I have been on a fairly even keel since, not straying too far from the shoulder length layers, but I've still not over come the Triangle Head. You know what I mean - thin on top, but ridiculously curly and frizzy at the ends. It is something of a problem. I have tried so many different products, but I still look like this:
(no, that's not actually me).

Any suggestions? I have heard Big Sexy Hair is good... I need something for volume on top, with curl-enhancing anti-frizz properties all over.

Ingredients are not my main concern. I would bob for apples in a vat of hydrochloric acid if it would provide resolution.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

new ventures...

While quietly bemoaning my lack of talent when it comes to weddingy things, and the fact that I am {very} unlikely to open a lovely wedding-related business any time soon, here are three awesome newcomers (or revamped blogger favs) for you to take a peek at:
Swoon Over It - The Blissful Bride has some stylin handwriting. I think she is going to do very well.
Thoughtful Day - a new baby and a new business from one of my favourite bloggers
just what NZ brides (and grooms...) need - Magnolia Rouge. Three of the best vendors in NZ have gotten together to give us tips and inspiration and some STUNNING mood boards. I will definitely be keeping an eye on this one over the next couple of years. (thanks for the tip Mel).
Of course, there are tons more wonderful ventures from many gifted bloggers out there... but these are three in particular that took my fancy.

Monday, 4 May 2009

Pretty dresses.

Both of my bridesmaids are lovely girls who are tall and slender and can wear most things. So it's no surprise that I am enjoying looking at bridesmaids dresses more than I did shopping for myself! Jim Hejlm is one of my very favourites at the moment. Sure, hardly any of the dresses can be worn again in a non-wedding situation, but considering that I'm leaning towards full length silky-type things that's kind of a given anyway. Sorry guys.

Colour choice pending, these are two of my favourite styles. At the moment.

Friday, 1 May 2009

XKCD Friday!

Jurassic Park is my favourite movie (the sequels were shite). From here
I am seriously considering walking up the aisle to the theme tune. This sounds a bit silly, but when you really listen to it, it's a cracking good fanfare... lots of pomp (what is pomp?).
Thanks for all the well-wishes for travelling - but I'll be around a while yet! Not sure when we're leaving exactly, but probably round July.
If anyone UK-based knows of a good sized campervan conversion-type vehicle going for around £800 (hey big spender) - hook us up yo?

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Shopping for some wheels

Thanks for all the support on the dress everyone - I am still deliberating (this is not unusual for me. Up until a couple of years ago I was going to get married in a pewter ballgown. so we'll see).

This weekend we are doing something fun and non-wedding related - shopping for a van!! we are heading off in a little while to drive our way to Russia. Then train/bus/drive/hitchhike/swim our way back to New Zealand. I am {very} nervous, but very excited too. I am also nervous about buying a van, as my {our} mechanical know-how is not great. But we'll be fine.

In my day-dreams we drive a van like this:

But have you seen how much these things go for these days?!? crazy!!

More likely we'll get something like this:

But it will still rock. Oh yes.

Monday, 27 April 2009


Hope everyone had a great weekend! I had a lovely time in Liverpool for Julz's hens weekend. I love Liverpool more each time I go, it's such an interesting city. The Cavern Quarter is awesome. We dressed as pirates for the Saturday night, which was great until some mofo stole my hat. I recovered though with a few hearty "shiver me timbers's".
I think we were pretty good pirates, except we all ended up sounding a bit more like drunk Cornishmen than Johnny Depp. Only two weeks till the wedding now - can't wait!! (speaking of which, anyone who cares about the outfit - it's all sorted now, I've found a matte pewter clutch and matching feathery-jewelled-hair-clip thing. I'm probably going to make do with shoes. Unfortunately).

By the way - thanks for all the support re the dress "dilemma" - I'm sitting tight for the moment, in an effort not to make a rash decision based on a fleeting love affair with a dress-that-is-symbolic-of-much-more-than-a-dress. I'll keep you updated. In the meantime, here is the dress:

... and this is the bit where you all go "seriously Julia? that's hideous. What Are You Thinking???". It's ok, really - my taste has been questioned before (a guy I "dated" in uni and the dungaree/headscarf combo of 1998 spring to mind).

Friday, 24 April 2009

XKCD Friday!

From here

Have a great weekend everyone, I'm off to Liverpool for a Hens weekend! yipee!!

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Lazy post today

These photos from The Bride's Cafe are spectacular. I wish I looked like that, and that Dave was into doing that kind of thing...

And how interesting is
this? While we were in Stockholm we went to the Nobel (prize) Museum, where they had a fascinating exhibition on censorship. It's amazing what you take for granted - my biggest problem is liking two dresses (that I have the means, and right to buy if I choose), when some people don't even have channels to speak for themselves.
Not meaning to get all deep. Just thought it was interesting. Plus, I really really like those journos in Fiji!

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Weekly rant... and a cake.

Skip to the pretty picture if you can't be arsed with my negativity

* * *
One of my tasks at work is to sift through tons of CVs and put people forward for testing and interview (which for the most part is fun; getting to give people chances in today’s dire climate. It’s less fun when I have to turn poor old men away because they don’t have the right experience but are otherwise awesome).
I do have one bone to pick. One of our screening questions upon application is “what is an aspect of your personality that could be improved”. If I read ONE more “well, I am a perfectionist” I will actually SCREAM! Or go postal. Seriously. A couple of you might know that I have always had a problem with people saying that they are perfectionists. To me it smacks of “I rock, and work much harder than others, and when I hand work in it is perfect, unlike everyone else’s work which is shoddy by comparison because they are ok with handing in substandard work” with self-righteously pursed lips and furrowed brow. It’s an extreme view, I know. It’s funny the things that irritate you, huh?

Working here has multiplied this by a zillion. I get that people are afraid of writing something negative on their application, but the ones that are honest and say an actual thing that they could work on impress me so much more than the old twist and turn to wring a positive out of a question about negatives.

Or do people who think they are perfectionists actually think that they are, and are not just being cocky? I guess maybe I just don’t get it – most people I know wouldn't finish with something unless it is as good as they can get it. Sure, to others it may not look "perfect", but to them it is to the best of their ability. So how is that different? Is perfectionism in that case just diligence with a self-appointed cherry on top, because you are confident enough to say that your work, once completed, is perfect?

My apologies to any of you who consider yourselves to be perfectionists. It’s just my pet peeve…kind of like when people say they have the flu when all they have is a bad cold. Gosh I am grumpy today.
What irritates you out of all proportion?

* * *

How pretty is this??? from here via here. Dave and I love us some crepes, so I think it would be perfect. I love the fresh, modern look. And it could possibly replace dessert.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Yes, I am ridiculous and an embarrassment to my mother.

So, having an immature wedding “crisis” this week.

It’s really not a biggie, but true to form, it’s now all I’m thinking about – even when I should be thinking about bigger, more important things like, ahem, work. So I have my dress – it is perfect for me; a touch vintage, romantic, pretty, not too meringue-y, and in a style that I know makes the most of my shape. The fact that it fits me perfectly straight out of the box and had a waaaay less than RRP price tag were also bonuses. It’s the kind of dress that goes with the style of wedding that we are planning too; with the cake, flowers, church, reception, dance, photographer, invites, save-the-dates, table plan etc etc etc. And that is the wedding that I want too; I’m not being a whiney brat crying that I am being forced into a big wedding. It’s not like that at all. It’s just that it is turning into a Big Deal, you know? A kind of intimidating big event with near-certain day-after wallowing “what do I do now” moping and self-pity (yes, I am a big baby). This is ridiculous, because I know how much fun I’ll have, how much I will love the day – after all, my sister’s wedding was one of the so-called “traditional” ones and it rocked. And that’s the kind of wedding I (we, hopefully! Ha!) want – it’s nothing so dramatic as me rebelling against the pressures of family or anything like that. In fact, I think it is fair to say that I am the one turning it into a big deal with my endless dwelling on bridesmaid dresses and flower arrangements!! So I have only myself to blame. Hell, it’s not even that big of an “affair” – just your standard wedding with all the regular accoutrements.

But (there’s always a but) now I have seen a dress that is the cause of a dramatic paradigm shift (ha, again – I’m far too melodramatic) in my wedding thinking. I tried it on in the hope that it would emphasise my munchkin-esq physique. Unfortunately, it made me look tall and thin with legs up to my armpits (anyone who knows me well know that this never happens). This dress inspires visions of a town hall elopement with minimal flowers and fuss followed by a blow out party. And I would wear sunglasses in our photos. So, the question is; shall I put on my big girl pants and Deal With It – I have a beautiful beautiful dress and let’s be realistic, it’s not all about the dress. Or, shall I channel my inner J-Lo and have a second dress for the reception. It is £125, which doesn’t seem like much, but to me is enough money in NZD for it not to be considered a bargain – so would be more expense on something that is certainly not a necessity. And I don’t want people to judge me for being that girl with the two wedding dresses. But, dammit I would have SO much fun partying in that dress.

Monday, 20 April 2009


Happy Monday! We had a great weekend. We got to see one of our most favourite music groups - Mnozil. They are an Austrian septet of brass musicians, and they are AMAZING! We were so lucky to get tickets to one of their concerts, they are uber popular all round the world. Also, the gig we made it to was a teeny intimate one of only 220 people in the middle of the Saddleworth Valley (a.k.a. the middle of nowhere) It was cool. It's so hard to describe what these guys do - they are first and foremost musicians, and they are seriously some of the best brass players I have heard ever. They all have very prestigious backgrounds in their own right(s), but have been together as Mnozil for years. The other side of their performance is comedic. I can't actually describe it, suffice to say that it was hands down one of the funniest things I have ever seen, as well as the most impressive. Check them out, but bear with me, the youtube clip doesn't begin to compare to the live show. Also, I can't find clips of the funniest parts of the set, which were a spoof on Jazz and a spoof on modern classical music. And a ridiculous version of Edelweiss. Bohemian Rhapsody is their signature tune though, so it gives you an idea. I don't have the skills to embed video. sorry.

Friday, 17 April 2009

XKCD Friday

Ah, the end of another short week - and luckily for us here in the UK, May is action packed full of bank holidays, so there are still another few short weeks to look forward to!

A couple of xkcd's for you today: the first is for my big sister and her husband who have just announced that they are expecting again! as Katie said; go Nic and Sean, way to procreate!!

And this one, just because...

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, 15 April 2009


One of these by Della Nonna:

Found here via Globetrotting Bride (which happens to be a favourite blog of mine).

What better way to mark the big day (or any occasion - birth of a child, important birthday anniversary etc etc)?

Thursday, 9 April 2009

XKCD nearly Friday!

This one is called "Fuck Grapefruit"

Courtesy of XKCD. Have a great Easter weekend! we're off to Stockholm, yipee!

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

If only I had the ability to walk in heels.

Then I could wear these on my wedding day.

Or might I be mistaken for a drag queen? I can't entirely decide whether they are classy enough for our wedding (not that I am particularly classy, but I don't want any of our guests thinking I'm the 'entertainment' at the reception). However, it is certain that they are fierce.

I am still sad that I didn't buy the shoes from this post when I had the chance. They even went on sale for only £35! what a fool I am. Of course, now they are long gone, and I am crying inside.

Monday, 6 April 2009

Yay!! happy Monday to me!

Amanda at The Blissful Bride has finished my inspiration board!! you can see the whole post here, including colour palette and pattern. Isn't it lovely??? I love it!! especially the shoes and the bouquet and the not-quite-matching bridesmaid dresses. Funnily, I was looking online over the weekend and found the exact same picture, and loved it so much I filed it away for future reference, so well done Amanda!!
If you've not done so already, head over to Blissful Bride and check out all the lovely posts (and for goodness sake put in your request for a custom inspiration board - I hear the orders are rolling in, so be quick!)

Friday, 3 April 2009

Julia's dark side.

So I yelled at a hobo yesterday.

Now I feel a mixture of guilt, shame, and indignation. Let me explain:

In Manchester (as with the rest of the UK and possibly some other countries) there are people selling the Big Issue magazine. As I understand it, these are disadvantaged types – homeless/halfway house people etc – who sell the magazines for donations and get to keep the money (perhaps they only get some of the money, or it gets taken off them by the Big Issue and put into some sort of care fund. I’m not sure – if you know the particulars can you please enlighten me?). Anyway… I’m a fan of Big Issue people because they are actually doing something with their day. And, at least in my experience, they are always unfailingly polite and are pleasant even if you don’t donate. Possibly they lose their “beat” if they are rude. I’m not sure, but I like them. I plan to give my favourite hobo £20 when we leave Manchester because he always says hello to me.

However – I was on my way to Chinatown yesterday (a whole other post involving Phad Thai), and had to get some cash out. There were two hobos sitting right beside the cash machines. I saw one guy get cash out and get yelled at by the hobo for not giving him any change. So I was on my guard and approached my hobo/cash machine with trepidation. When he asked for change I looked in my wallet, thinking I would give him some – I honestly didn’t have any, and told him so. When I walked away, he yelled at me across the street and called me a “sad b!tch”. I lost my cool and yelled at him. Nothing lengthy, just a few choice words.

On one hand, I feel completely in the right about this – how dare he yell at me! There was no way I was going to get out a tenner for him, because he had the alcohol shakes and I didn’t want to fund his addiction. And surely, if he was serious about changing his life, he’d have hooked up with Big Issue? And anyway, he started it (na na na na naa naaa).

But…. On the other hand. What the hell is wrong with me? In these times I am so lucky to have a job and a home and a future – did I really need to respond to the tramp? Did I really need to yell at him? I donate my £2 to the Cancer Society each year and think I’m Mother Theresa, but who am I kidding? So I don’t give a homeless guy money, then walk down to the supermarket, spend a few pounds on luxury food items, then wander back to my cushy desk job and spend the afternoon drinking free coffee. I know I whinge about money at times, but I honestly do know how lucky and privileged I am. So why don’t I do more to help those less fortunate than me? Why do I begrudge them a couple of quid that I am probably just going to spend at Starbucks anyway? I try to justify myself by adopting a smug tone and saying “oh, I would give money but we’re saving for our future/house/jetplane” but seriously folks, what am I really saying; “I like having money and don’t like giving it away” Any one else have this problem?

Having a bit of a middle-class crisis here. Also, just realised that I wore a bright pink bra today and classily matched it with a white shirt. Nice.

Sorry for the lengthy post. I may post an XKCD comic later to lighten the mood… (see?! I can’t handle such introspection!)

Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Still outta inspiration

Sorry to anyone who has been eagerly tuning in (ha) - I'm all out of inspiration this week. Work is busy, Dave and I are Making Plans, and blogging just isn't taking my fancy. I'm sure I'll be back very shortly though, probably by the end of the week (be sure to diarise it ;) )

In the meantime, many thanks to brother-in-law-to-be for introducing me to the wonderful world of XKCD. Just like Flight of the Conchords, it makes my world a brighter place. Even if I don't get some of (a lot) of it. Similar to my experience of watching Duplicity last night, now that I think of it. Usually I love Julia Roberts films, but this one left me so confused. I'm not sure what happened, although I do now know that there is a difference between lotions and creams. And that Clive Owen is aging nicely. I'm pretty sure that's not all I was supposed to take from it though.

Here's one of my favourite offerings from XKCD - there are a thousand others i like too. You may have noticed Corporate Speak Friday slipping by the wayside (with a whole 3 installments - woohoo!). Might be time for XKCD Friday.

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

I think we should see other people

a conversation of late late last night:
Me: What do you think of pewter?
D: Pewter? Huh?
Me: You know, the colour
D: Pewter isn’t a colour. It’s a dish
Me: No, it’s a colour – the dishes were made from pewter the metal. The colour is the colour
of the metal

{insert lengthy and slightly surreal conversation about what is and isn’t a colour – a highlight was “if you can say “pass me the *insert colour*” then it isn’t a colour – like you can’t say “pass me the blue” therefore blue is a colour. You can say “pass me the pewter” therefore pewter isn’t a colour”. Right Dave. what about orange?}

D: So, if pewter was a colour, what colour would it be?
Me: A dark metallic grey
D: Right.
Me: So, I’m really liking pewter and aubergine at the moment
D: What colour is aubergine?
Me: A dark purple
D: So why not just say dark purple?
Me: Well, because there are lots of shades of dark purple. I mean aubergine
D: But aubergines come in different shades of purple
Me: No. No, all aubergines are aubergine coloured
D: Now you’re just being racist.

Me: Night Dave.
This morning at work I get an email from Dave - he obviously spent the morning on and has pretty soundly proven (proved?) me wrong:

1. an alloy containing tin, lead, and sometimes copper and antimony
2. dishes or kitchen utensils made from pewter [Old French peaultre]
aubergine [oh-bur-zheen]
Brit the dark purple fruit of a tropical plant, cooked and eaten as a vegetable [French, from Arabic al-badindjan]

black adj. black·er, black·est
1. Being of the color black, producing or reflecting comparatively little light and having no predominant hue.

white n.
1. The achromatic color of maximum lightness; the color of objects that reflect nearly all light of all visible wavelengths; the complement or antagonist of black, the other extreme of the neutral gray series. Although typically a response to maximum stimulation of the retina, the perception of white appears always to depend on contrast.
oh. oh just whatever Dave.

Monday, 23 March 2009

I wish I had more hair

because then maybe I could have my hair like this for the wedding:
I was browsing Twigs and Honey today (something of a weekly ritual) and saw this post on Myra's lovely blog. How much do I love these hairstyles? this is the exact look I'm going for, except then I go home and look in the mirror and see...ummm... somewhat less hair than those models have. Not that I am balding, but my hair is quite thin and frizzy and doesn't grow very long. Maybe I'll have to just wear it up in a pony tail. I could throw caution to the wind and spring for a new scrunchie.

I find Myra's attitude and business something of an inspiration, she used to be a scientist who made a few hair bits and bobs, but now she has a thriving business and her wares are featured in heaps of magazines and tons of blogs and websites. I wish I had the guts and the talent to make a "job" out of creating beautiful things. Cue interior designer daydream again...

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Smiling at the office, and then all the way home

I know I said I wouldn't blog about work, but this guy just makes my day.

He works in the mailroom and periodically appears at our window in a very "here's Johnny"-esque manner to collect our mail.

He LOVES mail! and I don't even mean that in a patronizing "he loves mail but it's a menial task while I am up here in a real office" kind of way. He manages the mailroom, actually, and it is probably a very challenging role. You wouldn't know it though, cause Mailman always (and I mean always - unless he has intermittent meltdowns in the bathroom, which I doubt. Doesn't seem the type) has a smile on his dial.

Yesterday, he called to say (you might want to sit down for this) that the trial of the new courier company has finished, and, after extensive consultation, the mailroom has put forward a recommendation that we stick with the new courier company! You could practically see the excitement radiating out of the phone.

I vote we give Mailman a promotion and make him the head of one of the dour, world weary, upstairs departments. I'm not even being sarcastic - there should be more people like this guy in positions of power.

(p.s. I do know his name - I'm just not going to write it on the blog. Can you tell that I'm nervous about appearing elitist? I honestly don't think I'm better than Mailman, I just really enjoy him)

* image isn't of Mailman, but is a dramatic recreation.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Advice please!

I just bought this dress. It’s by Jessica’s Attic at Republic. I’m quite pleased with myself as it was on sale for a ridiculous amount.

Pretty eh?

The colour doesn’t come through very well – it’s definitely a candy pink rather than a coral-y shade of pink. The straps are beaded with clear/silvery beads. I am trying to find a picture of the back of the dress, as the way the straps join to the back is really cool, but there’s no pic to be found. I’ll get Dave to take a picture at the wedding (because you’re that interested huh?)

It is perhaps not the perfect dress I was in the market for, but at the price I paid I’m not complaining {too much}. Of course, today I was in Debenhams in the Red Herring concession and saw this dress, which I now desperately want. Such is life…

So, onto the next question: what colour accessories should I match with the dress? I’m thinking shoes, a purse, and maybe a wee hair thingy. Any suggestions?

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Pretty purple and a pinch of pink!

How's that for a nice bit of alliteration?! today I'm back on the weddings with a lovely inspiration board put together by Mel! isn't it great? I love the purple and pink together, so elegant and modern and pretty. It was originally inspired by this board which had us both gasping late last week. We are very much into the aubergine right now.

By the way, there is a ton of other stunning inspiration to be found on The Wedding Decorator, you should check it out...

Monday, 16 March 2009

yay SPRING!!!!

Spring has sprung in Manchester finally. I'm so pleased, it was such a beautifully sunny day today - everyone was sitting around outside eating their lunches. A nice change from the usual! We went for a walk yesterday up to the lovely Lymm Dam. There were daffodil meadows everywhere and lots of dogwalkers and happy families running about. We even got an icecream, it was quite the Spring outing. Here is a picture of Lymm Dam - so nice to get out of the city:

Here are some nice Spring things for you today...

These lovely spring chicken earrings

This cute cute wee chicken bowl - perfect for holding chicken earrings no?

this print - perfect for a nursery

I don't even know what you'd do with this, but it's cute eh?

I am so pleased that Winter seems to be over. Hope I haven't jinxed it.