Thursday, 26 July 2012

A rare occurrence

Today I finally had enough. 
I reached the point of no return and had to give in and book a haircut. 
This is a rare occurrence for me - almost at the once-in-a-blue-moon point (ok, I lie, I'm not that bad) - because there is always something else that I could spend the money on (horses' shoes, bills from the vet, books...) and also because I don't like getting my hair cut. 
At all. 
My kind of thinking
I've always wanted to be one of those women who has immaculate, shiny, flicky, I-just-get-out-of-bed-and -it-falls-naturally-like-this hair, but I don't. Sometimes my hair behaves beautifully (normally when I least expect it to and am not actually planning on leaving the house), but most of the time it is securedish into my variation of a ballerina bun. 
Strictly speaking, I think this is not really a ballerina bun.
However, I think it is lovely.
You can find it here.
The ballerina bun is supremely versatile - transition from day to night? No problem. 
Need to bend down to poultice a hoof/ muck out a stable/ persuade a kitten to get out from under the bed? The ballerina bun is your friend. 
Want to instil a deep-rooted sense of fear/awe into your students? Accessorise the bun with a pair of glasses and remember not to smile.
Also, it takes the hairdressing skills of a twig to be able to pull it off. Therefore, I am a natural. 
Actually, years and years of ballet classes and performances have meant that I can secure my hair in a bun faster than you can make me a G&T (if you already have the ingredients assembled and don't have to hunt for ice. Or lime. Or gin, for that matter). 
Cameron rocking the ballerina bun.
Sadly I don't look much like this.
Hey ho.
Where was I? 
Oh yes, the bun. And getting my hair cut. 
As well as coveting shiny, flicky hair, I've also always wanted to be the sort of person who has their 'do trimmed every 6-8 weeks and who would NEVER contemplate leaving the house with a hair out of place. In this fantasy world, I would also have regular manicures, drawers full of frothy, lacy, super-expensive underwear, shelves of the finest cashmere and a stable full of beautiful, understated, yet seriously chic handbags (instead of two horses, which, in all honesty, probably prevent me from having all of the above). Also, I would be on first name terms with my hairdresser (as in, s/he would remember my name).
Hmm. I didn't realise until just this moment how strange it was to have a fantasy of being on first name terms with a hairdresser.
Moving on...
Instead, once every six to eight months I slope into whichever hairdresser has an appointment that day and I leave full of joy at my new-found shiny hair that - miracle of miracles - is still blonde without having to resort to dye and, on a really good day, flicks like its the star of a Pantene commercial. 
I also vow to my new-best-friend-hairdresser that I won't be such a naughty girl in future and that I will come back regularly to see her and promise to do all the complicated at-home moisturising treatments, only use salon-approved products (Superdrug? eurgh!), and that I will learn how to blow-dry my hair properly instead of tipping my head upside down and blasting it on full power for 10 minutes (which works pretty well, actually).
Eight months down the line I survey the regimented rows of barely-used hair products - why is it that in the salon they work brilliantly, but when you get home they turn hair into clumpy, gloopy, rats' tails?  - and phone all of the local hair salons, bagging a spot with whoever has an appointment free the soonest. 

What was the occasion that prompted this latest stab at being more presentable? 
I'm going HOME tomorrow! As in, my English home, where I grew up.
My village
Hurrah! Olympics here I come! 
Too many exclamation marks. Sorry.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

In no particular order.

Well, hello there!
Goodness, what a bad blogmother I have been, leaving this little part of the world wide web lost like nobody's bairn. 
The trouble is, I'm having great difficulty in recalling what has kept me away from my little beloved... so it's lucky I spend half my life taking photos on my iPhone whilst thinking 'ooooh, must blog about that [insert random object here]'... and then I forget about it. 
Hey ho.
So, tomorrow I will get back in the flow with some totally random posts about my completely random life (yes, it is really time that I got a job), but for now I will dump all of my photos on you and you can judge for yourselves how exciting/ totally boring/ whyonearthdoesshethinkwe'dbeinterestedinthiscrap my life has been while I've been absent.
The only things that I can remember doing (in no particular order) are:
a/ getting a year older (not much effort required there)
b/ getting ridiculously spoilt by a certain Mr Awesome DPB
c/ nearly getting a job (but missing out in the final stage. Hmph.)
Actually, I say no particular order, but I had a birthday and got told I hadn't got the job on exactly the same day. So that was, like, super fun
Now for the phone dump.
You've been warned.
I was actually taking a picture of Little L's Playmobile because I thought it was cool.
Then I realised that the sneaky people in front of the pool were getting up to something highly inappropriate.
Get a room, people!
Mr Scoop is getting BIG.
He knows how to press keys on my laptop that make it do things I didn't realise it was capable of.
 This makes me quite proud and also quite bemused at the same time.
Also, he is now insured. Under the 'breed' section of the form it says: 'Scoop is a Black.'
Is it me, or does that just sound plain wrong?
My very small friend Anna K had a birthday and we got her a cool present (even if I do say so myself).
Top of picture: DPB's lunch.
Bottom of picture: My brunch.
It's a miracle I'm not the size of a heffalump.

The drawing room ceiling in our Edinburgh flat.
I love it.

Even East Coast trains are getting all patriotic.

I waved at Gesci as we went through York station...
No, she wasn't actually there, it was, you know, a symbolic gesture.
Part of the blogging sisterhood... (ok, I'll stop now).
National pride at Victoria Station (London).

The flat in Edinburgh is pretty much completely empty, but I was overjoyed to find that someone had forgotten to clear this beer out of the fridge.
Naturally, I had to take a picture of it.
Planning our trip to Paris.
[Squeaking with excitement].
I went to Brighton.
It rained.
Also, I discovered Hipstamatic.
Er, proof that I took a train to Brighton.
Right then...
The Royal Pavilion, Brighton.
They wouldn't let me in because I arrived at 5.03pm and last entry is 5pm.
It's lucky I don't get annoyed easily (er, not much)
A moody, sad photo of a lamppost to suit my sad mood.
Woe is (was) me.
Sign spotted in the Badger Bar, near Rydal, Lake District.
Found on the back of one of my birthday cards.
DPB is the BEST.
Erm, so, I think that's it for today.
It's good to be back.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

The List

So, you got to read about my birthday wish list.
Hope it was fun for you, because today I'm going to tell you what I actually asked for. 
It's exciting. 

Firstly, I did actually ask for a new wing mirror for my car, for someone to pay for my saddle, and for a new zip for my riding boots. 
Yes, siree, I did. 
But I fear that none of that is going to happen.
Hey, what can you do?

I then asked for:
A print of the shipping forecast regions.
Because who doesn't love the shipping forecast?
And who doesn't love prints?
Some Sufi verse.
I'm afraid you can't click to look inside, but you can on Amazon.
You're welcome.
This beautiful necklace.
All hail mighty Etsy.
This Loren Hope bracelet in turquoise.
My favourite perfume, Stella.
This pretty ring.
 (The request is null and void as I don't know my ring size. Doh.)
Riding socks.
Yes, I asked for socks for my birthday.
Don't look at me like that.
Please note: they are Mark Todd socks.
If I wear MT socks then maybe I will ride like him?
Pigs might fly?
And, of course, these:
These come with a free pair of socks.
Two birthday presents for the price of one.
Er, so there you have it.
My birthday in a nut shell.

p.s. I also asked for:
The 4s,
to upgrade from my much-loved iPhone 3 something-or-other.
oh, and this:
To replace my sad little MacBook.
Because I am incurably greedy. 
And it was only to DPB who knows I'm joking only a little bit. Ahem.
EIGHT days to go. 

Monday, 9 July 2012

It's my birthday...soon

So, as the title of this post suggests, it will soon be my birthday.
I'm not one of those people that gets freaked out about getting old not much but I am aware that I am now fast approaching the final year of my twenties.
Right then.
But instead of indulging in some semi-pseudo-philosophising about my nearly-expired youth [SOB!] (as in 'cry', not the abbreviation for... well, you know) I'm going to dedicate two posts to my birthday list.
One fantasy and one real.

Now, I don't really come from a birthday-listy-type family.
I mean, I love, LOVE, lists, but I've never done the birthday list thing.
DPB, however, is all over  the list thing.
Compiling a list for one's birthday, though, is actually quite a challenge - how much is too much? Will you look greedy if you ask for something that's over, say, £20? £30? £50?

UGH. The PRESSURE of being FORCED to choose one's own presents.

In my family it's more of a you-get-what-I'm-giving-you sort of deal. This may or may not include stuff (mainly books) from charity shops, which, actually, I really don't mind.
Also, I collect vintage teacups you know, for that house that I DON'T ACTUALLY HAVE and charity shops are fertile hunting grounds for those kind of things.

Anyway, that all has nothing to do with lists.

So, today I will start with the extravagant, fantasy list.
Next time I will be keeping it real.

By the way, I realise when I say extravagant I mean 'extravagant for ME'. I'm HOPELESS at playing the 'if you had a zillion pounds what would you spend it on?' game - my first response is always 'a new wing mirror for my car'. 
Sad but true. 
Still, I think these would all qualify as respectable 'fantasy' presents.

Cartier Trinity Ring

Kim Poor Cuff

Monica Vinader Earrings

Jaeger Olympia Bag

Marc Jacobs Hillier Hobo Bag

French Sole Ballet Flats
Actually, I already own these but they're looking a little threadbare...

Smythson Travel Clutch

Also, less glamorous and far more in keeping with my actual lifestyle (but still way out of reach), there are these:
Aigle Parcours Wellies
Er, I did actually ask for these, but at approximately £100 a  pop for wellies that will soon be COVERED in sh... I feel I may not be getting them
Yes, again this is not glamourous, but it is warm and about as stylish as I get when I'm in my natural habitat.
Musto Jacket
Pikeur Julienne Breeches.
That'll be shining bright...
Next time:
What I actually asked for.
Can anyone guess?

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Driving Miss Daisy

A couple of weeks ago my landlord/ friend/ surrogate-father-figure/ sort-of-older-brother-type-person had an operation on his knee. [Sigh. It's no good, none of those labels really works or explains anything] 

This is not a good thing for anyone, but especially not good for someone like Mr C. 
Mr C. makes him sound like he is 90, when in fact he is very roughly half that. However, Mr C it is.

As a very active, busy person who runs his own construction company as well as being half of the duo that runs the smallholding I live on, it is tough for Mr C. to sit back and smell the roses. 
Mr C. does not do sitting back or smelling roses.

Anyway, as I am enjoying [cough] a period of 'funemployment' (goodness, I'm really beginning to hate that term with a passion), Mr C. decided that he would 'employ' me as a driver.


Now, it is not that I am not a good driver.
I am, thanks.
It is just that I drive an ancient automatic Mazda hatchback.
Mr C. drives a Land Rover. 
It is a manual.
And the gearbox is weird.

Now, I can drive a tractor ish and I have driven Land Rovers and Range Rovers before.
I have even been employed to drive golfers in a luxury Mercedes people carrier thing. My CV is fascinating.
But for some reason, my confidence has plummeted when driving Mr C. around in his own car.

I think it has got to the point that Mr C. is regretting his decision to give me something to do, especially as it is taking approximately 3 times longer than normal for him to get anywhere because I do not like going over 50 miles an hour.
And I can't park (in his car. I am very good at parking in my car).

It was also quite amusing to turn up to pick up some supplies [something to do with roof panels? Oh I don't know, they were grey and heavy and came in pairs. And they are to be put on a roof somewhere] and be the 'muscles'.
I am actually much stronger than I look. 
The man at the yard did not believe me and insisted on carrying most of the things to the car.
I look like a runner bean. 
Except I'm not green. Or bumpy. Much.

There really is no point to this story, except to show you what was hiding in the shed at the roofing supplies yard:

A vintage Massey Ferguson tractor!
Whatdoyoumean you're not excited?
What a beauty.
Trying to be subtle when taking a picture = not very successful photography attempt.
And, as long as I kept throwing his wood block, this little chap did not care if I looked like a bumpy runner bean with string instead of arms and pipe cleaners for legs, or that I kept putting the car into third instead of first and once accidentally put it into reverse whilst driving at full-speed.

So that was fun.
I will probably not become a chauffeur when I grow up.

Friday, 6 July 2012

High Five for Friday

1/ A billion years after everyone else, slowly but surely my mother is learning how to text (although I got a bit freaked out when she put a winking face - ;-) - in one of her texts... that's just not right, somehow):
2/ Birthday cakes and treats (otherwise known as consuming 20 times the government's recommended weekly calorie intake):
Don't judge me...
Hmm, I'm not the size of a house yet...

3/ Listening to a pipe band:
4/ B's film premiere (sort of... along with several others'):
More people did turn up, I promise.
We just got there super early because we were super excited.
5/ Rediscovering some of my favourite things when packing up our flat (sniff, sniff, there goes the Edinburgh crash pad... for now. Boo, hiss):

Yes, I have a thing for Agatha Christie novels...
Ok, I know I've stretched the 5 things a little bit, but - what can I say - I'm a very inclusive person.
Or something like that. Indecisive?

A sneaky number 6:
DPB is coming up this weekend and we're going to PARTY. A bit. And then probably eat a lot. 
And sleep. 
We're very fun people.

Fancy joining in?
Go here.