Berlin – Part One

When it comes to history, there are few cities with such a chequered and fascinating past as Berlin. I’ve wanted to visit for a really long time but had been vaguely put off by friends’ accounts of a grim concrete wilderness and endless building sites as the newly prosperous and unified city pulled itself together. However, as time went on, I started hearing different reports about Berlin and how beautiful and interesting is and once again my interest was raised and I put it to the top of my Must Visit List. Imagine my joy therefore when my rather nice […]

Goodbye to All That

So, here it is. The last day of my thirties. I’ve been completely dreading this, which is, I know, just a trifle VAIN of me but forty just seems like such a HUGE number plus when I was growing up, women in their forties were, well, old and I just don’t feel ready to be properly grown up. Not yet anyway. I mean, there’s still loads of stuff that I want to do and places that I want to see! It’s all changed now though – women in their forties aren’t expected to wear beige, don sensible shoes and cut […]

Fear of Forty

Z for Zillah, Edward Gorey. I have this in my kitchen. I had something of a miserable childhood and adolescence for all sorts of reasons too tiresome to enumerate here but suffice to say that it was tough at the time, still occasionally upsetting now but these days I am mostly better than fine about the whole thing. However, one of the things that I find hard to deal with is the fact that my grandparents who raised me in the absence of my parents brought me up to be completely lacking in any vestige of self confidence, pathologically anxious […]

Woo Berlin!

I MAY be a bit over excited right now as my completely AMAZING husband whom I love VERY much announced yesterday that he’s taking me to Berlin for SIX DAYS for my birthday (and our anniversary which cunningly falls three days later) WITHOUT THE CHILDREN this October. Okay, I’m going to have to wait nine months before it actually happens but I’m a rabid list writer and planner and darn well NEED all those months to prepare and also brush up my GCSE level German for the occasion. I haven’t actually been to Germany since a hideous school trip to […]

This Week!

Homemade sushi!/My big mug/amazing present from my friends Mike and Tish – it’s the 1889 POVERTY MAP/oh yum at Wagamama. Haha, it’s been a long time since I inflicted one of these posts on you all but seeing as I’m having a bit of a busy time right now I thought I’d check in with some pictures and STUFF! so you can see what I’ve been up to! A plethora of Halloween stuff. We’re getting a bit more into the whole spiced pumpkin thing here in the UK although obviously we have some way to go before we’re quite as […]

Minette’s birthday!

Henrietta Anne, Duchesse d’OrlĂ©ans, Lely, c1662. Photo: National Portrait Gallery, London. My poor little mother was on the run from Parliament’s forces when I was born. Sickly, exhausted, frantic about the fate of her husband and other children and massively pregnant, she was forced to seek refuge in the west country city of Exeter and gave birth to me there in a rickety little house close to the centre of town. Mam was so thin and unwell that she fully expected to die in childbirth and in her despair and anxiety even wrote a will and instructions for her burial […]