Monday, 24 December 2012
There are so many Christmas traditions I enjoy and I suppose one of my favourites is making our home look festive. The tree in the lounge is similar to last year, mainly burgundy and gold with special baubles we have had for years......
Wednesday, 19 December 2012
Last Sunday we decided to take a break from all the Christmas preparations and have a relaxing Christmas lunch at Samlesbury Hall, a beautiful historic hall built in 1325 and just a ten minute drive from home.
This lovely half-timbered, black and white medieval building was actually saved from demolition in the 1920s when six local business men bought it and set up a charitable trust to maintain and preserve it for future generations to enjoy (a builder had planned to build a housing estate on the site!)
Our turkey with all the trimmings definitely put us in the Christmas mood......
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
Christmas wouldn't be the same without delicious mince pies but I find some of the shop-bought ones too sweet (even for my sweet tooth!) The addition of fresh cranberries and apple to a jar of mincemeat gives these pies a really fresh taste.
The recipe is from the free Waitrose supermarket newspaper, Waitrose Weekend..........
Wednesday, 5 December 2012
I was immediately impressed with the cute menus featuring boutique cupcakes......and luxury cupcakes........
Familiar and well-known flavours were there but it was good to see the use of local ingredients too.......dates, saffron, pistachio and rosewater (a cupcake called A Kiss from a Rose!)
Wednesday, 28 November 2012
|love to shop bag via NOT ON THE HIGH STREET|
Even a shopoholic like me can find shopping at this time of year a chore.....the crowds, queues, cold and rain just take away most of the pleasure .....You can't beat shopping in comfort, even in pyjamas, scented candles lit, glass of wine......browsing the internet... finding unusual gifts....
...and here are a few great ideas I found this weekend.....a tea towel perfect for a blogger friend who is never without a camera.....
|via la cerise sur le gâteau|
Thursday, 22 November 2012
Called Level Shoe District, it's situated in Dubai Mall (yes, it's the world's biggest mall!)
96,000 square feet, 15,000 different styles, 250 brands......It's a shop-in-shop layout with separate spaces for different brands .....and they are all there.......
Wednesday, 14 November 2012
I mentioned in my last post about my trip to Oman(here)that our hotel, The Chedi was so impressive that it deserved its own post.......
As soon as we arrived, we were greeted by warm smiles and once through the main doors, into the incense-perfumed lobby, we instantly knew that it was a special place - there's a calm ambiance so difficult to describe (and even more difficult to achieve!!) ......
Saturday, 10 November 2012
|Grand Mosque, Muscat|
After four days in glitzy Dubai (that's another story!) we took a forty-five minute flight to Muscat, Oman. A cloudless sky gave us clear views of Dubai with the Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world) towering majestically above all the other enormous skyscrapers.....
|The Burj Khalifa Lake in the foreground|
From the moment we landed we were greeted by the welcoming smiles of the friendly Omani people. Muscat is made up of pretty low-rise white buildings with a backdrop of the rugged and barren Al Hajar mountains...... no tall buildings here!
Monday, 5 November 2012
A few weeks ago we spent a Sunday in the English Lake District but the main purpose of the visit was afternoon tea at Holbeck Ghyll, a lovely English country house hotel.
Wednesday, 24 October 2012
|via Country Living|
There's something about Halloween which encourages us to be creative...... decorations for the home, imaginative cake designs, table settings and party games.
I've stumbled across some very stylish pumpkin ideas which I thought you might like.......Traditional black and orange is always a favourite and this pumpkin covered in black lace from Jess at Red Rose Alley really would make a very stylish centrepiece......
|via Red Rose Alley|
Wednesday, 17 October 2012
These little tarts are full of autumnal flavours and are ideal as a quick lunch or a simple starter. I picked up the recipe leaflet while shopping in Sainsbury's (I always find their recipes to be quick and reliable without long lists of ingredients!)
Wednesday, 10 October 2012
Finally on Saturday we had a dry, sunny day and the first opportunity to try out our new folding Brompton bikes. Into the car they went and off to Lytham St Annes, just twenty minutes from home, for a safe ride along the coastal path.
Thursday, 4 October 2012
'Give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world'
I have always had a thing about shoes(and handbags!)and I know that it runs in the family too! When I spotted this little book..........
........I had to buy it! If you too are a bit of a shoeaholic then you'll enjoy it........
Thursday, 27 September 2012
Earlier this month, we enjoyed a week of celebrations in my home town, Preston in the North of England. There really was something for everyone ...a different event every day....from colourful processions, live music (including Katherine Jenkins and José Carreras) to artistic hairdressing and fireworks... but it only happens once every twenty years!
Wednesday, 19 September 2012
Wednesday, 12 September 2012
Day 2 in Munich.........and a perfect temperature for strolling around the city (you can read about Day 1 here)
There are so many lovely buildings in Munich all well-maintained and even better against the beautiful blue sky.....
Wednesday, 5 September 2012
|The Fish Fountain,|
So....Munich....It's Germany's third largest city, famous for its beer gardens and lederhosen yet it is also dynamic, filled with wonderful buildings, modern museums, world-class art galleries, high-end shopping and a range of excellent restaurants and pavement cafés - I can certainly recommend it as an ideal city break..........
Thursday, 30 August 2012
My Little Paris is a cute book which tells you the best Parisian secrets. It's full of little gems, snippets of information and quirky recommendations(certainly not the usual touristy places!)
Fany Péchiodat, the creator of the My Little Paris website has teamed up with her sister Amandine to share favourite addresses and useful tips when visiting the city........
Wednesday, 22 August 2012
Whilst in London for the Olympics we visited a few coffee shops on my must-try list. I had read about Bea's of Bloomsbury in Great Cake Places London 2012(you can read my review of this lovely book here) and we decided to try the Afternoon Tea at the branch next to St Paul's Cathedral.
There's a modern twist on the traditional English afternoon tea (no cucumber sandwiches here!) ........
Wednesday, 15 August 2012
Wednesday, 8 August 2012
I mentioned here that our tickets for the Olympic Football at Old Trafford, Manchester had arrived but like many people we were still a little disappointed that we hadn't managed to buy tickets for a London event.........
Imagine my excitement when I received a phone call to say that I had won two tickets to watch the ATHLETICS AT THE OLYMPIC STADIUM!!!!! I had entered a draw at our local BMW showroom a few weeks ago but didn't for one second expect to win......
So off we went to London last Saturday, 4th August 2012 and the city looked amazing.....
Friday, 3 August 2012
Our jet lag soon disappeared when we drew back the curtains and saw this stunning view on our first morning in Hong Kong. Bright and sunny - the perfect day for a trip up to The Peak, the highest mountain on Hong Kong Island and the view from the top was truly spectacular...
On the other side, in complete contrast to the skyscrapers, the lush Pok Fu Lam Country Park.
Friday, 13 July 2012
Thank you to American Mom in Bordeaux for nominating me for the Sunshine Award(apparently it's for 'bloggers who positively and creatively inspire others in the blogosphere'! - just a bit of fun really) Anyway, I certainly need a little sunshine after the days of constant rain we have had here in the UK! So....I have a few questions to answer and then I need to pass on the Sunshine Award to ten worthy bloggers who will hopefully join in..