Tuesday 30 December 2014

Christmas and all That.

Hello, I'm back and it's been a while.
As you can see I did manage to get the tree up but a combination of the manic build up to the festivities and being ill have kept me from blogging. I can't grumble because what I've been referring to as my annual cold isn't even that.
 I'm convinced working in a University library is like working at a doctor's surgery, in that, at first you catch every damn bug going and are constantly ill, but eventually become immune to the majority.
Even though I no longer work there I clearly have a lifetime of antibodies and thankfully I rarely get ill. I can't even remember the last time I had a cold, certainly more than a year ago but just to make up for it this one has thoroughly kicked my butt.
It hasn't been enough for me to take to the bed (sadly) though the sinus pain was enough to drive me to the very edge of my sanity, ok, I know that's not far but let me be a little dramatic here.

A couple of weeks down the line and I feel like it's drained the very life out of me, to be blunt I'm knackered. I hate having no energy.
Christmas was lovely but by 9.30pm I was done, a broken woman. We finally left my brother's house at 10.30 and walked briskly home which I have to say helped.
We brought Nephew Number One home with us so I left the pair of them too it and crawled into bed. Apparently Himself and the Nephew had a whale of a time drinking beer and watching dvds until 4am.

Talking of nephews we did our annual jaunt down to Torquay for Nephew Number Two's birthday just before Christmas. I could have done without the 5am start but it was all worth it when we arrived.
It was a fancy dress affair with 2 spidermen, one of whom stabbed me in the buttock with a ninja turtle's sword, (that's what happens when you get distracted by green jelly, you get caught off guard) and 3 batmen.

Himself was very impressed that we had 3 eras of batman represented, from Adam West to Christian Bale.
Though I bet none of you knew that Batman's real arch enemy is not actually The Joker but in fact Peppa Pig. I don't know what he said to her but she floored him good and proper despite the pink party frock, now there's a film I'd pay to see......
Nephew Number 2 was 5, he had a big shiny balloon and borrowed my camera to take a picture of me with it. I returned the favour.

Here's The Little Miss, who was far more interested in licking the window than watching the party games which amused Himself no end. He spent a lot of time outside trying to take pictures of her doing it, he got some crackers butI'm not going to share because every girl deserves to look her best.

We didn't stay over this time, so caught the train home at 8pm. That got quite lively at Bath where it filled with rugby fans who proceeded to wedge somebody into the luggage rack and somehow managed to plunge our carriage into darkness! Thankfully they all got off at Swindon and the last leg of the journey was quiet. To give them their due, the sheer number of them did also raise the temperature in the carriage, up until that point the train had been freezing cold. I was very glad to get home to my bed.

Other than that I ate out with friends pretty much every night until work finished for Christmas, to the point where Himself looking all sad gave a plaintiff  "are you actually in any nights this week?".

I had to work Christmas Eve again, bah, but luckily it was quiet and we got sent home early because of the trains being rubbish.
There was a lovely eyelash moon on Christmas Eve.
(When it's this little it's an eyelash, a bit bigger and it becomes the Cheshire Cat.)

I ventured out to feed the birds and found my early snowdrops are even earlier this year.
I can't remember them coming up in December before.

We went to Reading yesterday. The sales no longer seem to have the appeal they used to for me. Once upon a time I would be up and out the door on Boxing Day morning but now I really couldn't care less. Himself needed new work clothes though so we ventured out. I bought a few bits, including a cartoon print bank robber dress from Cath Kidston as you do.
 I never get over how some things are so damn expensive in there and others not. I saw a cardigan for £45 in the sale, £45!?! I mean it was very pretty but quite thin, I'd never have paid £45 for it let alone nearly £90 full price. I visited Paperchase (one of my happy places) and Accessorize and then called it a day.

Today I'm going to nip into Oxford as I want to get some theatre tickets. I won't stay long, I have Christmas books to read
and tea to drink in the peace and quiet of my own home. My plan is to hibernate until it's time to go back to work.

Thursday 11 December 2014

Why Do Housework When You Can Shop For Antiques?

Why indeed.?
Even though my house was crying, no positively bellowing out for a clean I gave it not a backward glance.
I was up and off and out for a day of antique browsing, tea drinking and cake eating with my friends Simon and Liz.
We went to The Old Flight House at Weston on the Green. It's a fantastic place.

Very much like a lot of other antique centres out there it is made up of lots of small units within one larger building. The difference is The Old Flight House is really well laid out and beautifully displayed.
There really are prices to suit all budgets and it has a wonderful cafe with gorgeous hot and cold food and homemade cakes.

We had a blissful few hours browsing before tucking into freshly made baguettes and a naughty piece of cake that no one really had room for but it would have been rude not too eat.
 We decided for research purposes to try different ones each, and I can report that the fruit cake, coffee and walnut and chocolate fudge cake were all delicious.

There were a couple of things I wanted to buy so after we had eaten we went back round. Both Simon and Liz were left speechless by my memory skills as I whisked back through like an exocet missile with it's target lock on to the 3 different units that held the things I wanted.

This ability is what I call my 'shoppers recall' and it is a skill I have honed well over the years!

Like the good blogger I try to be, I took my camera with me, and below are some of the shots I took. I did get a couple of funny looks and one tut but such is the lot of a blogger.
I loved the top picture of Canterbury Bells but of course I took a completely shit picture of it with full glare on the glass *sigh*
A family of teapots.
A shocked beaver (fnar fnar)
I was fascinated by this bust. It was opaque glass and from this angle had such a gorgeous serene expression but from the front, and you might just be able to make it out on the neck in this shot, you could see inside was carved the skeletal spine and collar bones. Very bizarre.
Oh how I wish my bedroom looked like this! I have to say hooks on a picture rail is a damn good idea for handbag displaying, note to self.......
Just for Vix - Spot the poodle!
How ace is the kitty sign?
because no blog post from me is the same without an elephant.
This eland statue was gorgeous but sadly way, way way out of my price range.

So what did I buy?

I don't know if it is always the case but there were quite a few handmade Christmas decorations around and very good prices too.
I couldn't resist this felted snowman.
Or this lovely green necklace
Or this navy woven wicker handbag for my collection, and at £26 for all 3 items who could blame me?