Birthday by the sea

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I’ve just got back from a lovely long weekend in Port Isaac for my Birthday. We took the pups packed the car up and headed down after work on Thursday. The traffic was a bit of a nightmare as a lorry had been on fire on the M4 so sat nav took us the A303 way which seemed to take FOREVER.

I was feeling a bit anxious and Guy was a bit stressed because of the detour which I think Piglet must have sensed as she panted for the entire 4 hour drive.  All was forgotten when we arrived at our little cottage unpacked and sat curled up on the sofa in front of the fire.

Friday morning we woke to the sound of the seagulls chatting excitedly to each other at sunrise which I love. The sun streamed through the blinds and the pups came up on the bed for a cuddle, when I remembered it was my birthday.  It was a perfect morning Guy cooked breakfast as I opened my lovely cards and presents.

Low tide was at 10 so we put our wellingtons and coats on and walked down to the beach. I still can’t believe we own a house right by the sea, it’s been a dream for so long.  The pups LOVE the beach so much it’s definitely their happy place. Port Isaac beach is in a sweet little cove which normally has a few fishing boats but this time of year they shelter in Padstow’s harbour.

I’m a big beach comber I could spend hours scanning the beach for shells, sea glass, pottery and driftwood.  Port Isaac has lots of rockpools which is perfect for the pups to have a paddle in.  Spending time on the beach on my birthday was definitely a high light.

We decided to go to Falmouth for lunch and shopping it takes about 50 mins to get there. When we arrived the sun was shinning and it almost felt like a summers day.

Falmouth has some great little shops and an abundance of great places to eat. My favourite shop is Cream Cornwall it has lovely home accessories, fabrics etc. We have some of their nautical themed cushions and prints for the house.  After a walk on the pier I was craving a crab sandwich so we went to a Caribbean restaurant. I had a crab sandwich which was lovely with a glass of rose and Guy had coconut prawns with fries.

We had a little time left on our car park ticket so we had a quick look around the maritime museum. They do a ticket that you can use for 12 months so we can go back for a proper look later on.

When we got back the sun was still shining so we spent some time sitting in the garden something we’ve not been able to do since we bought the house. The views of the sea and rolling cliffs is so beautiful,  the sound of the sea makes me feel so calm.

For dinner we headed to Nathan Outlaws fish kitchen which is situated at the bottom of the hill right opposite the beach in one of the oldest houses in Port Isaac. Nathan is one of the top chefs in the country and has two restaurants in Port Isaac both have Michelin stars.

The fish kitchen is a great concept in that it’s all small dishes that you can order in any order and have as many times as you like. It’s fun to try all the dishes and share them with your partner. With Nathan it’s all about the flavour and where he sources his ingredients if the fish hasn’t been caught that day it’s not on the menu. It is one of my very favourite places to eat the food is simply divine and the atmosphere is cosy.

We ended the evening by having a drink in another one of the oldest buildings in Port Isaac the Golden Lion. It’s a lovely old pub right on the sea edge where you can feel the history all around you. They do great pub food and they allow dogs which is always a bonus.

It was a lovely Birthday and just what I needed.

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Morning cuddles

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A walk on port Isaac beach

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Sunshine

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Pups on the beach

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Falmouth seagull

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Birthday cake

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Fish kitchen

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A little piece of heaven

p1040203Last year was a bit of a whirlwind I had been suffering from stress and anxiety with the realization that I was the only one that could do something about it.  Looking back over the years I suddenly had light bulb moments where I could actually see the anxieties building up in me. I would always put it down to something else and as such last year they all built up into a massive smack in the face.  After another trip to my doctors when Guy made me go after a nasty panic attack brought on by a horrible migraine at 3am in the morning, where he had to witness me throwing up, crying, shaking and looking like a crazy adrenaline pumped freak.

The doctors were very understanding and unsurprisingly told me that it was all too common in this day age to have people suffering from stress and anxiety.  That we never switch off, the constant access to the internet, emails, text messages means we are never just at peace with ourselves. That is only too true for me a confessed control freak workaholic that never switches off which only makes the fact that Guy and I also work together even worse. My doctor said he could look at drugs to help me but that I should give stress management ago first and I had to agree I needed to make a change in my life and pills were not the answer.

I started to look at mindfulness and various other self help books, I even looked into classes. I found some very useful meditation videos on YouTube from a man called Michael Sealey which upon listening to them for the first time made me cry. I had an overwhelming feeling of release and calm. Learning breathing exercises and what could calmed me down and stop my migraines was amazing (although it doesn’t work every time). What was truly eye opening to me was that I had the power over my brain and that I could start the anxiety but I could also stop it.

It’s been a long journey and I am by far cured, I have recently started to use the app headspace to learn meditation and the interesting concept of observing our thoughts and feelings, not to fixate on them and try and stop them but to observe and just let them be. One of my main issues has been trying to fight the tension in my neck, the throb in the side of my head, the tight knot in my stomach, my racing heart and mind. Even telling myself off “stop being an idiot” “why are you worrying about it, it doesn’t matter” “why can’t I just be normal” the more I keep berating myself the worse I feel.  Learning to just let these feelings wash over me to tell myself it’s ok to feel tense is alien but it does seem to be working little by little.

One of the little changes I have been trying to make is the switching off and towards the end of last year Guy and I decided to bite the bullet and buy a holiday cottage in Port Isaac North Cornwall. We had talked dreamily about it for years forever looking on right move at our dream cottages about how we would renovate them and spend summer days on the beach with the pups.  We had a little of bit of money put aside and talked of having a new kitchen and various other treats for ourselves when I said to Guy what are we waiting for? We don’t have any children, we don’t need to move house and we have everything we really need how many more bikes and handbags could we buy?!

It took a bit of convincing with Guy but I knew we had to do it this was going to be our little bit of heaven our escapism from the rat race. So on the 2nd of December we drove down to Port Isaac in a little van full of furniture with the pups and got the keys to our little 1850’s old coastguard station cottage and we couldn’t have been happier.  We spent the entire Christmas and New year decorating and it was such fun and bliss sat in front of our little log burner with two very happy little dogs curled in front of it.

I am going to post the renovations we have done to the cottage and the places we love to go in Cornwall etc. The photograph is the back of the cottage in the garden.

Also I would love to hear from anyone who suffers from anxiety and how you deal with it as I really feel talking about it helps.

 

 

 

 

What the hell happened? 

  
So I turned 41 yesterday, yes forty bloody one! How the hell did that happen?  Where did my twenties go was I drunk for the entire of it? 

I still feel in my twenties totally clueless, still loving cocktails and shopping. The difference now is I have a husband and a mortgage (and my nightclubbing days are over) 

Instead of binge drinking on a Friday and Saturday night followed by throwing up with a banging head on a Sunday, we go out to dinner or have friends over/go to friends houses. (Maybe that’s why I’ve got so fat!) 

I met my husband when I turned thirty (he’s five years younger than me yes I’m a cougar) so I forever feel old. I have been blessed in that I have always looked younger ( that’s me above at aged 18….) but when you hit the big four zero it’s hard not to spend hours in front of the mirror obsessing over wrinkles. 

I am at the awkward fashion moment in that I don’t want to dress like a 60 year old stamp collecting hiker (no offence I’m sure you are rocking your zip up cardigan, waterproof trousers and sensible walking shoes) but I also don’t want to look like madonna either 

I’ve been reading a lot of forty fashion blogs at the moment and those woman look hot (in the fact that they look like 6ft models). I’m 5ft 2 and let’s just say not a size 10 ( a bit higher up the chart) . I love their style but need to get me one of my own I just don’t what it is yet………

Here are a few of my forty fashion fav blogs 

www.doesmybumlook40.blogspot.co.uk

www.notdressedaslamb.com

www.schoolrunstyle.blogspot.co.uk

My (not so much sale) shopping…

 

We went to London yesterday whilst my husband went on a brewery tour (a Christmas present from friends) I decided to brave the shops and get me some bargains. Although I love a bargain I am terrible at shopping for them. I try and get enthusiastic rolling my sleeves up to elbow my way to the rails but when they look a total jumbled mess I can’t get excited.  I find myself looking lovingly at the new items gleaming from the well organized, beautifully displayed rails.

Even the most stunning designer handbags look like something from a car boot sale if they are thrown together looking grubby on a shelf. I know that the psychology of displaying sale items is to pile it all up to make them look like a massive bargain that you Just can’t not buy. But this just doesn’t work on me, which is a surprise as I am a retailers dream being a shopaholic. Although its probably the reason that I am a shopaholic that it doesn’t work.

I love the whole experience of shopping, the excitement of finding something I instantly fall in love with. The thrill of finding that one item that is going to make me look stunning or make my life perfect (yes I know I’m idiot).  If the item is then beautifully wrapped and put in a cute bag all tied up with a bow then I am in shopping heaven. So this is why sale shopping has no appeal, fighting through badly displayed items, standing in sweaty queues and seeing my purchases thrown in a red sale bag just doesn’t do it for me.

Getting back to my shopping trip yesterday I did go with the intention of sale shopping but as per usual I was seduced by all the non sale items. In all fairness I did know that I would be making a trip to Charlotte Tilbury’s new boutique in Convent Garden which would consist of me having to hold myself back from buying the entire store!  As I don’t live near any shops that sell her make up I have to stock up when I am in London (this is my good excuse) .

I couldn’t resist her make up look “Rock Chick” which  is going to make me look instantly like Kate Moss. The kit consists of everything you need for your eyes, lips and cheeks all wrapped up in her cool make up bag with instructions to create the look. (and then put in a box with a bow and then in a cute bag) I also purchased the gift of goddess skin set which has three of her travel sized skin care items goddess clay mask, magic cream and wonder glow. I haven’t tried any of her skincare so I thought this was a good way to give it a try and handy for Traveling.  The last item was her retoucher concealer which I can’t wait to try as heard so many good things about it.

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My other purchases were from my trip to Anthropologie another store I can only shop at in London. I love love love this store after my very first visit to it in New York in 1998!  I have been on the look out for some pretty coasters for our lounge, to protect our Ercol coffee table.  Their celestial coasters are pure shimmering  gorgeousness and pick out the accent colour in our lounge. I then couldn’t help myself with a necklace purchase the Alexandria brass and vintage gold necklace with taupe leather is so pretty.

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You would have noticed the necklace and ring above which was another non sale purchase (I know I can’t help myself!) These were a surprise find in Top Shop. I haven’t been in Top Shop for a few years, I couldn’t help but feel too old and not being a size 6 too fat to shop in there. It was pouring with rain yesterday so out of shelter and curiosity I entered the large Top shop on Oxford street. I was very surprised to find they had a great jewellery section. I feel in love with the Ottoman Hands jewellery collection and had to fight myself from buying more than these two pieces.

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So there you have it not one item was actually in the sale, but I do love each and every item and they came beautifully wrapped (even in Top Shop)

 

 

If the shoe fits….

 

I have always loved shoes, I can’t help myself its an addiction.

In my twenties I wore a lot of high heels which killed my feet. It was a running joke that no matter what shoe I would wear out shopping I always had to buy a new pair as my feat would hurt.

So now that I have hit the big 4 0 (yes it still kills me to say it) I have finally got my shoes right.  My current go to shoes for winter have been three different pairs. I may wear these three a lot but it doesn’t stop me having millions of pairs in my wardrobe that I can’t bear to get rid of!

  1. Adidas Superstar Originals white and black. I know I am late to the party with these but I truly love wearing them. Especially with my ripped black skinny jeans and oversized jumper. I also have them in all black and to feed my addiction I’ve ordered the holographic ones too.

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Images from Pinterest

2. Ugg black Abree suede zip up boots They are so comfortable as well as stylish. They are tight on the leg and have the side zips, they look alot smarter almost like a chic biker boot. Again they look great with black jeans and also black trousers.

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images from pinterest

3. Mint Velvet grey suede tassel ankle boots. I have quite a few of mint velvets ankle boots as they are so comfy and perfect for work. I didn’t have a grey pair and these are a perfect shade. They are also on sale at the moment (typical I bought them at full price!) Not only do they look great with trousers or jeans for work but I also like to wear them with dresses.

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images from pinterest

As I said before I am adding to my Adidas collection but I am sure I will want to also add to my Ugg and ankle boots.

What are your favourite winter shoes?

 

The Travel Bug

Happy New Year 2016

I don’t know about you but I tend to find January quite dreary and depressing. Once the Christmas decorations have gone away and the realisation of how much food and drink has been consumed I feel slightly deflated.

I think that is why January always seems to be the month for planning holidays we all need to something to look forward to.  We have already booked to go away at Easter to New York which is very exciting.  Our trip is for a week which is a real luxury for us, last time we visited it was only for 5 days so we are hoping to take a more leisurely pace.

The hotel we have booked is called The Viceroy which is located on w 57th street not far from central park. We wanted somewhere central that we can walk to different areas from. The rooftop bar looks fun and the 1920’s décor is right up my street. I am looking forward to researching places to visit, my husband doesn’t like reading guide books or doing research so its left to me otherwise it will be like when we went to Paris and we didn’t have a clue where to go!

A few things on my list are:

  1. Walk along the High Line ( we did this last time but it was so cold we didn’t really get to enjoy it)
  2. Walk over the Brooklyn Bridge
  3. Go up the empire state building
  4. Ride bikes around Central park
  5. Go shopping in Bergdorf Goodman

 

I would love to hear from anyone that has any good recommendations or has stayed at the Viceroy.

In the summer we normally go to the South of France my Husbands parents own a lovely house in Vaison La Romaine which is located in the Cote de Rhône. It’s so beautiful, going to the food and antique markets, wine tasting and sitting in the sun is so relaxing.

 

 

The other place we go to yearly is Port Isaac in Cornwall it’s our home away from home. It really is such a beautiful picturesque relaxing place, the dogs love it. Watching them playing on the beach makes me so happy and it’s also a special place as it is also where we got engaged.

 

I’m starting  to feel better already thinking about planning our holidays