Friday, 31 August 2012

Friday Fun

Happy Friday everyone!
House of Fraser are currently running a Style Challenge competition for the chance to win £200 of vouchers, and while I'm certainly no fashion blogger I do feel like I know what looks good even if I don't manage to be particularly stylish 24/7, so here is my entry:

On the red carpets recently we have seen a resurgence of Old Hollywood Glamour - think Charlize Theron, Scarlett Johansson, Penelope Cruz and the vintage icon that is Dita Von Teese. This look pays homage to that era by keeping lines sleek and upping the glamour-factor with a few key items of bling. 

The dress, from Phase Eight, is a great figure-flattering shape which nips you in at the smallest point and skims over the hips and thighs creating a really sleek outline. The muted gold tone is enhanced by a subtle shimmer which will be picked up in the jewellery.  
The Steve Madden shoes are fab-u-lous and the sparkle will look great peeping out from under the bottom of the dress as you sashay along that red carpet.  
The bag from Coast adds a touch of texture to the outfit which will give the simple dress another dimension, this could also easily be given a hint of sparkle for added interest by attaching this beautiful hummingbird broach from East.  
These gorgeous stud earrings bring that touch of colour up to the face for a birghtening effect and this gorgeous statement ring, also from East, adds a pop of colour which ties together the accessories nicely.  
This look would look great teamed with smokey-eyes and nude lips and hair pulled back into a loose up-do รก la Scarlett Johansson, perfect for all those Christmas parties and award ceremonies that will be coming up soon. 
So what do you think?

Monday, 27 August 2012

Monday Mumbles

It's Monday again and a Bank Holiday so no work today (Yippee!), and I am spending the day relaxing before heading off to a friends house-warming BBQ later this afternoon... let's hope the weather holds!

This week has been fairly uneventful, I finally managed to catch up on a bit of sleep from all that I missed over the last few weeks travelling madness 

I walked or cycled to work 4 days out of 5 this week which should be a fair addition to my trek training 

I made the decision to join Weight Watchers this week and went to my first meeting on Wednesday night, I'm trying to be really positive and hoping for at least a small loss this week. 

My four bridesmaids came to stay with my on Saturday night, we had an enormous lunch at The Minnow in Weybridge and then spent the rest of the day making plans for my hen party and discussing other wedding related business - we were surprisingly productive! 

I had a glorious day relaxing on the sofa on Sunday, it's been a while since I had a duvet day and it was most definitely needed... I'm now feeling refreshed and ready for another week. 

What have you guys been up to? How did you spend your Bank Holiday weekend? 

Friday, 24 August 2012

Friday Fun

Are you ready for some Friday Fun?! Here are a few things that made me smile this week: 

10 Reasons Why... by Emily Hartridge 
If you haven't already heard about Emily then go take a look at her youtube series. Emily is frank, hilariously loopy, and effortlessly cool and dishes out some honest advice. 

Stationery Designer Veronica Dearsley 
I met Veronica at School of Rock and her designs are bright, fun and slightly kooky... what's not to love? 

While finally unpacking my suitcase from my travels a couple of weeks ago Skittles sneaked her way into the pocket of my suitcase for a quick nap...sneaky sneaky!

The Power of Positivity from Rock N'Roll Bride 
What's the nicest thing that's been said to you recently? 

Live video stream of a mum-cat + kittens - watch for 5 mins and you'll be smiling all day. 

This little image I found on Pinterest - some very good advice indeed!

What have you seen or done this week that's brought a smile to your face?

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Wedding Wednesday: All Quiet on the Wedding Front

Things have been a bit quiet on the wedding front of late (as you may have seen from other posts I've been pretty busy over the last month or so), though luckily we got all of the big things out of the way pretty early on - dress, shoes, venue, photographer, and band - so I'm still feeling rather relaxed about the whole thing... for now at least! 

I'm trying to be as organised as possible so we've got a long 'To Do' list taped to the fridge which we are slowly ticking through - I must admit however that my original list was about half as long until I ran it past my super-organised bridesmaid Tammy who instantly doubled it's length with items she came up with 'off the top of her head', so at least now I won't miss anything. Because we still have 5 months to go there is quite a bit that can't be done until nearer the time, which frustrates me immensely - I like to be prepared and am massively impatient so waiting to be able to do something for what is going to be one of the most important events in my life is driving me crazy, especially as Andy doesn't share my need to be so ahead of the game (he is the most laid back person I've ever met).  

I've tried to spread out the things on our list so that I have enough to keep me going until right up to the wedding but I'm already ahead of myself. Somehow I need to slow myself down, I'm just not sure how! I wouldn't call myself an uptight person but if I know something needs doing I'd rather just get on and do it than leaving it festering on one of my many To Do lists (the same can not be said for housework unfortunately which I will happily procrastinate over for weeks). 

Over the next few weeks I shall be putting together our invitations ready to be sent out and Andy will be heading off to try on some suits (about time too!) with his 2 best men - I'd love to be a fly on the wall for that. 

What were you all doing 5 months before your wedding?

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Tasty Tuesday: Spiced Carrot Cake

Spiced Carrot Cake from Restoration Cake: 

Charlotte from Restoration Cake shared this delightful recipe on Friday so I decided to give it a go... here is how it went: 

The prep work is all pretty easy, though grating carrots has never been my favourite task - thankfully I have my Kenwood Prospero which makes this MUCH easier! I've also recently been using Wilton Cake Release for greasing my cake tins and it's been sooo much simpler than faffing with baking parchment. I did choose to leave the sultanas out though as I'm not a fan but otherwise I stuck to the recipe.

The finished mixture went into the oven and very quickly began to smell amazing which made the wait for it to be ready utterly excruciating - patience = zilch! Finally it was time to take  out of the oven and admire the cakes in their naked form. 

I made the silky smooth cream cheese frosting while I waited for the cakes to cool, again this was super easy though somehow I always seem to need far more icing sugar than it says in the recipe - maybe it's just my sweet tooth, who knows. 

I cut the top of one of the cakes off so that when I stacked them they would sit together better and proceeded to slather it with frosting, sneaking a wee spoonful  as I went, and here's how it turned out. 

I brought this into work today and it went down a treat!
Tasty, flavourful and easy to make... why don't you give it a go?

Monday, 20 August 2012

Monday Mumbles

Hello all! 
It's fairly safe to say that the last few weeks have been pretty manic so my posts have been sporadic at best so here is a quick round up of what's been going on: 

Andy and I spent a fabulous weekend in Chicago (read all about it here) 

We attended the wedding of our good friends Chris & Jen up in Bradford which was a wonderful day - we laughed, we cried (well I cried; the speeches were just beautiful) and we danced the night away in the most gorgeous setting 

I survived a typhoon in Shanghai last week! We weren't able to leave the hotel for 3 days but thankfully got home with only an hour delay. 

I attended the School of Rock workshop run by Kat (with a little help from Gareth) of Rock N'Roll Bride which was amazingly informative, fun and inspirational - so you may be seeing a few changes to the blog in the coming weeks... look out! 

A boozy night out in Clapham with a few of my favourite girls on Saturday somehow didn't result in a hangover (no idea how that happened) 

Finally, I had a lovely lunch out with my dancing girls (we met at a dance class, they don't just dance for me!) on the South Bank and we caught up on everybody's news in the sunshine. 

Phew, I need a rest now! 
What have you lovely lot been up to this week?

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

My weekend in Chicago

Chicago is an incredible city, even in the short amount of time we had I think we managed to pack in a lot.
Firstly, the transport system is great, super easy to navigate and will get you anywhere you want to go for a very small expensive taxis for us!
Our hotel was basic but clean but in a great location just a couple of blocks from Michigan Avenue and the fantastic Grant Park and Millenium Park, which is where we spent our first evening taking in a free open air concert by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. We dined on meat-stuffed ciabattas from Panera and sat on the grass surrounded by hundreds of Chicagoans - many with some very elaborate picnic set-ups.

Due to the jetlag we were up early on Saturday morning and so we headed out to see the city. We took a stroll North up the lake shore path (that would be the shore of Lake Michigan which is so big it just looks like the sea because you can't see the other side) admiring the boats along the way and on up to Navy Pier. For those that don't know, Navy Pier stretches out into Lake Michigan and hosts a number of rides - the Ferris Wheel is a must for great views of the city - restaurants, a conference centre, boat rides and more. We rose the ferris wheel, went on a boat tour and grabbed some lunch at the Billy Goat Tavern & Grill.
After Navy Pier we made our way over to Michigan Avenue and the shops of the Magnificant Mile. At the top end of the Mile is the John Hancock Tower which, though not the tallest building in the city, has arguably the best views - the best being from the ladies restroom! Rather than paying the $15 to visit the observatory on the 94th floor we instead visited the Signature Lounge bar (for free) on the 96th floor and spent the money on a couple of cocktails instead. The lift takes a mere 40 seconds to rise over 1000 feet and the views from the top are indeed spectacular, as are the cocktails!
After hitting a few shops we headed back to the hotel for a bit of a rest before dinner - the rest was indeed necessary as we worked out we'd walked over 16km over the course of the day! We went out for some famous Chicago pizza (Yummy!) and then back to Navy Pier for their weekly firework display.
After the long day we headed off for an early night ready for another day of adventuring in the morning.
Day 1 in Chicago: Millenium Park open air stage, view from the Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier, view from the Signature Lounge 95th Floor of the John Hancock Centre, The Magnificant Mile
Day 2 began with a leisurely breakfast by the lake and then a short train-ride up to Wrigleyville, the home of Wrigley Field and the Red Sox baseball team. The place was buzzing as there was to be a game on that afternoon but we decided not to go and watch it as we wanted to carry on exploring with the little time we had. We meandered around the neighbourhood, taking the opportunity to wander into the residential areas and peep at a few houses and searching for a few kooky shops mentioned in my Lonely Planet guidebook. Best of all was Uncle Fun's, a strange little shop housing all manner of weird and wonderful toys, books, games, dress-up items and much more. The girl behind the counter was the epitome of 'odd-ball' and delighted in pointing us in the direction of many a random thing.
We made our way back towards 'The Loop' to a short rest before dinner. As it had been Andy's birthday the week before I had taken a recommendation from a colleague and booked us a table at the Smith & Wollensky restaurant. We dined on gigantic steaks and even managed to squeeze in dessert before the restaurant brought over a little birthday treat for Andy (a chocolate cup filled with a delicious chocolate mousse and whipped cream with a candle in it - thankfully they refrained from singing him Happy Birthday!) before we wandered back into the night to admire the city.
Day 2: Wrigley Field, Uncle Fun's Toy Shop, a cool bike rack, the river by night
We were up early again on Monday so decided to go and see Cloud Gate, or as it's affectionately known, 'The Bean', at Millenium Park before everyone else was up. We'd been to see 'the bean' a number of times over the weekend and every time it manages to look different from the last, capturing new views of the city and those that inhabit it. We were lucky that we were 2 of only 6 people there so early to see it glisten in the morning light. 
Again we breakfasted by the lake, drinking in the sun as the first few joggers made their way along the shore path ready to start their day. We didn't have time for much else as we had to check out of the hotel and get Andy off to the airport (I was staying for a few more days for work) but I can definitely say that Chicago is an amazing city; there is lots more to explore than we were able to in our short time and I would love to go back.
Cloud Gate aka The Bean!
So that's our weekend in Chicago. Have you ever been? What was your favourite part?

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Weekend Walks No.5 - Newlands Corner

I've been away travelling for work for the past 2 weeks so exercise has been fairly sporadic so yesterday I took the opportunity to get out into the sunshine and go for a walk. Again we used our trusty '50 Walks in Surrey' book and headed off to Newlands Corner for a wander.

Stats as follows:
Date: 12/08/12
Start Time: 1.00pm
Length: 7.3miles or 11.76km
Time: 1hrs 38mins
Temperature: 27C
Route url: Newlands Corner

The sun was shining so by the time we got to the carpark it was already filled with cars but we managed to find a spot and headed off down the track.
The walk quickly took us downhill and under cover of trees, great for keeping my pale skin out of the glaring sun and we meandered along to the pretty town of Shere. We stopped at a lovely pub - The William Bray - for lunch; we stopped there for quite a while and ate until we were stuffed, the portions were gigantic!
We left the pub and made our way uphill to the North Downs Way which we then followed all the way back to Newlands Corner.

The terrain was a mixture of woodland paths and country roads with 1 hill to climb about half way through, nothing too tricky or strenuous but a good walk to ease me back in to exercise after a week off.

Hope you've all had a lovely sunny Sunday!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Monday Mumbles No.7 - Weekly Round-Up

It's been another hectic but fun week and here's what's been going on:

My car has officially died and will be heading to the scrap heap tomorrow. I've only had it for a few months and it's been nothing and now the head gasket has gone. Thankfully they're giving me £170 for it and coming to collect it but now I have to find myself another one!

Training has started in earnest for the Sahara trek in November - only 16 weeks to go so I'd better get on it! You can still sponsor me here!

More physio on my foot on Thursday which is really starting to get somewhere, it's really getting much better and I'm confident that with a few more sessions  I should be back to normal.

This weekend was the joint hen and stag do for 2 of our friends (Chris & Jen) who are getting married in a couple of weeks. We spent the weekend in a bunk barn in the middle of the Yorkshire Dales with about 18 friends. Time was spent drinking, eating, walking and playing silly games and everyone had a lot of fun.

The Happy Couple!
I also baked a few cupcakes for the weekend, using the skills I learnt at the Cupcake Decorating class I went on a few months ago taught by Charlotte from Restoration Cake - how do they look?

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Tuesday Training No.4 - 16 weeks to go!

It has been brought to my attention that as of this week there are 16 weeks to go until the trek (eek!!) and I haven't really started training yet. Charity Challenge (the event organisers) have a 16 week training plan which they recommend so that is where I have started. The plan aims to build up the amount of hours you spend walking over the course of a week, starting at just 90 minutes of walking in week 1 and ending with 840 minutes in week 15 (week 16 is only 360 minutes so that you are rested before the trek starts).
I have created myself a training schedule (gulp!) for the next 16 weeks that I hope I can stick to, however the next few weeks are manic for me - 2 full weeks of travelling for work plus a 'sten' weekend (joint hen and stag do) and a wedding all to fit in - so I am just going to have to do what I can and hope for the best. Luckily while I am away for work both the hotels I'm staying at have gyms and we'll be going for a long walk as part of the 'sten' do, I just have to keep the motivation up to make sure it gets done!
As you probably know I have also been suffering from tendonitis in my foot which I've been having physiotherapy for, and while it is much improved I am still quite nervous about doing too much training as I don't want to aggravate it and make it worse again... what is a girl to do? 
If you'd like to help motivate me, please donate to my fundraising website... the more money I raise the more motivated I will be to make a good job of it!
Do you have any training tips for me?

Monday, 16 July 2012

Monday Mumbles No.6

Last week had to be one of the slowest weeks EVER! Not for any particular reason but when I woke up on Wednesday thinking it was Friday I knew it was going to be a long week.
The start of the week was fairly dull but on Thursday I had my 5th physio appointment for my tendonitis. Treatment has been going well but after an afternoon of standing up on Saturday it was fairly sore and it felt like she was digging for gold in my leg - painful to say the least.
Then on Thursday evening we had an appointment at our wedding venue (Field Place in Worthing) to talk about food and ask some more questions before we start sending out our invitations. The person there was extremely helpful and we're now ready to start sending out invites. There is still loads to think about but we are certainly on our way.
I treated myself to a set of Babyliss Heated Rollers so that I can start trying to figure out some of the fantastic vintage hairstyles I keep seeing - this pic is my first attempt at a Maryilyn Monroe style (apologies for the bad lighting!)

On Saturday we attended the evening reception of a friends wedding (CONGRATULATIONS MR & MRS DONLAN!!) and had a fabulous time. The bride was beautiful, the venue (St Martin's House in Leicester) was stunning, evening was a lot of fun.
I also treated myself to a whole heap of new skincare (the Clarins stuff that I told you about here) which although it cost a small fortune, it was Clarins Gift Time in John Lewis so I also managed to bag 3 other lovely products for free! I thought it was about time I gave my dressing table a bit of a clean to make room for all my lovely new products and it now looks like this:

What have you guys been up to this week?

Friday, 13 July 2012

Friday Fun

Back in May I saw a random tweet asking for hair models for a vintage styling workshop by The Vintage Hair Lounge and as I had a few hours owed to me at work I thought I'd do it. I've tried to do a few vintage hairstyles on myself by following some youtube videos but somehow they never turn out quite right so I hoped to maybe pick up a few tips while watching the stylists at work, and as a bonus I'd get a couple of nice photos at the end of it.
The workshop took place at a cool little salon in Clapham (The Witches Hut); I was to be modelling for Norina under the expert tutelage of Sharon & Gloria. There were a few other stylists, a make-up artist, Molly Dickie, to complete our vintage look and uber-talented photographer, Scott Chalmers, to capture their creations.
After a bit of a chat Norina settled on a style involving victory rolls which meant heated rollers, much coiffing, teasing and back-combing but as I hope you will agree, the result was pretty fabulous!

Hair by Norina Mingoia, Make-Up by Molly Dicky, Photo by Scott Chalmers
I'm definitely not convinced I could re-create this look myself but I picked up a few tips and I am now desperately coveting a set of heated rollers. I'm also considering a vintage-esque style for my wedding but I think this might be a little on the extreme side... food for thought though.

What do you think?

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Wedding Wednesday - I'm a Winner!

I've never been a particularly lucky person and had never won ANYTHING up until about 5 years ago when I won a year's free gym membership, however that slightly backfired because not actually having to pay for the gym made me even less inclined to go! Since then I've won the odd raffle prize but nothing of note (actually that's a lie, I won tickets to go and watch Dancing on Ice being filmed which having never really watched the show turned out to be quite fun) but seeing all of the competitions that wedding magazines and blogs run I thought I might as well just enter EVERYTHING. Weddings are, after all, an expensive business so the thought of winning something I might have otherwise had to pay for or just not had was quite attractive.

Back at the end of last year Weddings in Surrey ran a competition to win a Final Countdown Wedding Package from The Beautiful Wedding Company .
I entered the competition along with a mountain of others and didn't give it another thought. Then in January I received a phone call from Clare at The Beautiful Wedding Company to tell me that unfortunately I hadn't won but that she would like to offer a discount on her services which was very generous of her but as I hadn't actually been planning on having any sort of wedding planner I again thought no more of it.
A few weeks later I received another call from Clare; the original couple had cancelled their wedding (how sad!) and so they had re-drawn the prize and I had won. By this point I had forgotten what the prize even consisted of, but as Clare took me through the details I realised what a massive deal it actually was. Details of my prize can be found on the Weddings in Surrey blog, so go and check it out. Clare has been nothing but helpful so far, offering to help me source suppliers, even though my prize doesn't actually kick in until 8 weeks before the wedding.
Having never really considered having a wedding planner, now that I have one, I am so glad that I do! I have a tendency to get caught up in the details so I am looking forward to being able to hand everything over to Clare and relax on my big day.

Amazing huh?! Well that's not the end of it. I'm still entering competitions and in fact recently won another amazing prize... a beautiful and bespoke button bouquet from Beau Buttons. I had been coveting one of these for some time and was willing to splash the cash to have one but it now turns out I don't need to and I can spend the money on something else. Emma has already asked me the kind of thing I would like (cream with hints of purple and pink with a vintage feel) and I can't wait to see what she comes up with - from the pictures on her website I am very excited.

So that's my winnings so far. I would absolutely recommend all brides-to-be to enter every competition they can because you never know what you might win. I'm still entering competitions so fingers crossed for some more fabulous prizes!

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Wedding Wednesday No.5 - Skincare

I know it's still 6 months until the wedding but having got all of the big things sorted I thought it might be a good idea to start thinking about my skincare routine, after all, who doesn't want to look good on their wedding day?
My skincare routine has always been a littlle haphazard at best ranging from not even taking my make-up off at night (a mortal sin in beauty terms) to a few weeks of a full on cleasnsing, toning and moisturising routine day and night (these never last for long however as I am somewhat easily distracted). Thankfully it appears that I am pretty lucky when it comes to my skin as I get few spots and not a wrinkle in sight so far. It does however appear rather dull and I have some fairly large pores on my nose and chin. So to get that happy glow that all brides strive for I headed to the Clarins counter in one of the House of Fraser department stores for a skin consultation (sounds scary but not at all).

I was greeted by Kayley and taken to a little table and chairs to talk about my current skincare routine; needless to say she was fairly disappointed in my current lack of routine but also flabergasted that I am in fact 29 and still no wrinkles (yay me!). We talked about my type of skin (combination - very common) and she suggested a number of different products that might suit me, writing it all down on a little form. At this point I was expecting the sales pitch to start, but instead she handed me a bag full of testers and told me to go away and try them all out and come back when I knew which ones I liked but to make sure I came back in the next 2 weeks so I could claim a free gift!
So here I am, beginning my testing; as i've started straight away i'm starting with the evening products which are a cleanser and toner in one and a night cream. I used the cleanser toner combo (
Water Purify One-Step Cleanserto clean my face of the days grime. Now my usual routine would have possibly (though probably not) have involved swiping my face with a cleansing wipe and hopping into bed, however this time I meticulously scoured every millimetre of my face with the cotton wool until not a trace of dirt could be found. I have to say I was quite horrified by the amount of gunk that came off my face... Gross!
Once clean it was time to move on to the night cream (Multi-Active Night Youth Recovery Cream); my skin drank it up like it hadn't been moisturised in weeks leaving my face feeling fresh (no stickines or greasiness), smelling gorgeous and looking plump. A good start!
The following morning my skin felt pretty good so I washed it with my usual face wash (Neutrogena Visibly Clear 2-in-1 Face Wash & Mask) and then moved on to the next step (Daily Energizer Wake-Up Booster) which goes on after cleansing and before moisturiser to give your skin a radiant boost. This product felt a little strange as it is a liquid which you are supposed to apply with your fingers so it felt like some of it just ran down my hands rather than ending up on my face. What I did manage to get onto my skin felt lovely and sunk straight in though. Finally onto the moisturiser (Daily Energizer Lotion SPF15) which was really light and left my skin feeling lovely and plump. Importantly it has an SPF in it as my skin is quite fair and I burn very easily.
Having now used all of the products for a few days my skin is feeling lovely and soft and by the end of the day it is looking much less shiny, which is great. So I shall be heading back to House of Fraser at the weekend to purchase myself these lovely goodies!

Monday, 2 July 2012

Monday Mumbles No.5

We've had a busy few weeks and here's what's been going on:

Andy and I went zorbing last Saturday which was hilariously fun (amusing video to follow). Andy actually bought the trip for my birthday back in April but we've only just got round to it.

Flights and hotel have been booked for a long weekend in Chicago at the end of July which I am really excited about. 

We went to see Flawless & the English National Ballet in their collaboration 'Against Time'. Again Andy bought the tickets for my birthday. The show was amazing, a real fusion of ballet and hip hop - it really made me want to get back into dancing which I haven't done since I sprained my ankle very badly 18 months ago.

We've confirmed our accommodation for the wedding... More on that another time.

I did a spot of shopping with my friend and bridesmaid Izzy where we went in search of some bridal skincare - I'll be telling you more about that in the next Wedding Wednesday.

We spent a bit of time doing things round the house - hanging pictures, re-organising drawers and other dull but necessary tasks. We also planted out all of our seedlings so we are now waiting for our crops to start producing, we have tomatoes (LOTS of them!), peppers, chillies, courgettes and squashes.

I've also got an exciting and hectic 6 weeks coming up with lots of travel, 2 weddings, a joint hen and stag weekend and a few other bits and pieces.
What have you guys been doing?
Take care x

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Thursday Thanks No.6

Well everybody I have hit my target!

Thanks to the Kantar Quiz that was held last week I am now well and truly over my target and fundraising has reached over £1600 and still rising. The night raised over £1100 in total and £700 of that was donated to my fundraising page through team entry fees (£100 per team) and the proceeds from the raffle and bar on the night.
A big thank you goes to my team the Retail Rascals, for their participation on the night. We had a good laugh, even though we only came 7th of 9 teams... I'm just pleased we didn't come last!

A final thank you goes out to the lovely Laura Fell for her donation, she however is madder than me as she runs marathons!

Don't forget you can still donate (just because I've hit my target doesn't mean I'm going to stop asking!) at my online fundraising page here.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Tuesday Training No.3

As will be fairly evident from my lack of Tuesday Training posts I haven’t been doing too well on the training front. So far my efforts have been intermittent at best with a few good weeks interspersed with a few bad ones, but not always due to my lack of desire to train (though I admit some weeks I have just been downright lazy!).

As you may have read in my last Monday Mumbles post I am currently suffering with tendonitis in my right foot which stems from a recurring ankle injury. After just trying to get on with things and ignoring the pain for the last couple of months I have probably not helped myself so now I am undergoing physiotherapy and taking a complete break from anything that even looks like exercise. I had my first physio session last week with the same therapist as I had when I had a serious ankle sprain just over 18 months ago; she spent a lot of time assessing me and then moved on to the painful bit – massage (not the nice kind) and acupuncture. I had a total of 7 needles inserted into various points on my foot which were then left for about 10 minutes and given a little twist every now and then. I’ve had acupuncture before, both in my ankle and my shoulder/neck and each time it has proved really beneficial – the idea is that the needle stimulates blood flow through the affected area, speeding up healing time. My therapist reckons on 6-8 weeks recovery time but I’m hoping I’ll be back at the gym within 4… keep your fingers crossed for me!

So that’s it for now, until my foot is at least partially better I can do nothing L, on a brighter note, I am now up to £1189 in my fundraising with plenty more due to be rolling in over the next few months, so I am hopefully going to smash my target good and proper. Don't forget you can still donate here too!

Take care everyone!

Monday, 11 June 2012

Monday Mumbles No.4

I’ve been a bit slack on the old post-writing this last week or so, so here is a quick round up of what’s been going on:

On Wednesday 30th May I attended a VintageCupcake Decorating class up at The Make Lounge which was hosted by the very talented Charlotte of Restoration Cake. We learnt how to colour our fondant, make some gorgeous vintage-inspired cake decorations like bows, used moulds to create cameos and other shapes, and finally painted some of our pieces. The class was a lot of fun and Charlotte was really knowledgeable and a great teacher. We each left with a box of 6 cupcakes and many of us bought some lovely supplies at The Make Lounge shop so that we can continue to practice at home.
My lovely cupcakes - they didn't last very long!
I then had the following 2 days off work, which was lovely and I spent my time relaxing at home after a busy few weeks at work; I also treated myself to a couple of treatments at The Surrey Retreat in Woking on the Friday afternoon. I had been reading about Universal Contour Wraps for some time and had a received an email from The Surrey Retreat a few weeks ago with an offer for 30% off the usual price of the wrap so decided to go for it. The idea is that you are wrapped in clay soaked bandages for an hour and the minerals in the clay help to rid you of toxins and tighten your skin helping you to lose inches – who wouldn’t want this?! The spa also offers a number of other treatments for half price while you are waiting for the wraps to be removed, so I indulged in a lovely facial.

We then spent Saturday and Sunday pottering around the house and doing a bit of shopping and on Monday I made my way to Leicester for a surprise birthday party for my bridesmaid Sara. Thankfully she had absolutely no idea and was suitably surprised and pleased about the whole thing, even if she was a bit hung over from the night before! So I spent a lovely afternoon and evening with some of my best girls before heading home again on Tuesday afternoon.
Sara's Surprise Party - all the girls!
The rest of the week at work was thankfully fairly quiet as most people had taken the days off as holiday.

This weekend we headed down to Brighton to go and look at wedding rings; we had a lovely lunch in town and then went off to the shop where we’d bought my engagement ring to have a look at what they had on offer. They had exactly what we were both looking for and we’d ordered both rings within about 15 minutes! One more thing to tick off the list.

While we were down in that general direction we thought we’d go and stay at my parents empty house in Worthing (they recently moved to France and are still trying to sell the house here), and invite a couple of friends to spend the evening with us. We dined lavishly on chips and dip followed by chicken kiev and chips… so grown up!

The only thing left to report is that my tendonitis in my foot is still plaguing me and I have been advised by the doc to take painkillers for the next 2 weeks until I can see a physio. I’m hoping that she can sort me out fairly quickly because I desperately need to get in some serious training for the trek! Time is quickly disappearing and I don’t want to be a hopeless wreck on the trip.

That’s all for now folks, I hope you enjoyed the long weekend last week (hoorah for the Jubilee, even though I missed it all!).