Tuesday, 26 April 2011

An evening stroll

This evening James and I went for a 'stroll' along the river.

I say stroll, it was more of a gentle scramble along the riverside playground of james' youth.

(that's James, in case you were wondering)

You can join a path along the river right behind our house, we didn't know how far we might be able to still get along it now. Turns out, the answers all the way still!

We got all the way to this old disused bridge, although it can't be crossed now sadly, hard to believe that behind those trees there's estate after estate, and the city hospital!

There was some scrambling under the rail bridge, and jumping over boggy bits, but mostly it was really pretty!

The bluebells are out in force here, they're migrating into my garden too!

We seemed to be following the family of ducklings most of the way along the river.

We also found an approaching army of pylons, but hopefully they can't cross the river?

Sunday, 24 April 2011

a room with a view.


The garden is really coming into bloom now, so I thought I'd share one of my favourite views from the house with you. The ancient apple tree, shading debris from the shed saga (more on that to come, oh the joys), the chestnut we hung my wedding dress from to photograph it, and a lovely lilac. There's several of those around the garden, which I love. The lovely sunshine is making it harder to see here, but if I waited I'd never get round to posting. I'm too impatient.

Just a little sneak peek of whats to come once I finish the last of my wedding posts.

credit where credits due, pt 2

In praise of friends.
Little did I think when I started this blog 18 months ago, that I would make what i hope are lasting friendships from it.
This little space was created after spending several weekends completely immersed in the world of wedding blogs, seeing the relationships that formed, the supportive comments, and the brilliant ideas in weddings which were oh SO different to the ones in magazines.
Of course, I wanted in on all that fun. I hoped that people would pop by and comment, like what I was doing. I wanted it as an outlet for the ideas I was having, rather than constantly bombarding my mum and lovely bridesmaid with emails.
And you came, and you commented, and you were lovely. Occasionally you would email, and slowly relationships started to grow.
One day I met one of you, bizarrely we went ring shopping together. If it weren't for this meeting, I wouldn't have the wedding ring I wear today.
Then a while later, another lady emailed, asking about a group meet. So 5 of us met, in Edinburgh (I love that because of these ladies I get posh days out to Edinburgh :) drank coffee, smelt tea, ate cake, and laughed.
We've met again, with the addition of another, and I count all of them amongst my friends. Oddly, for people I haven't known that long, I feel like they can read me like a book. Maybe I wear my heart on my sleeve, maybe I am an open book, or maybe we were meant to meet, who knows?
You may notice us, babbling on twitter (sorry! We're that loud group in the corner).
But it's not only these ladies who've commented, who have read my ramblings. I wanted to say thank you to you all.
The ladies who write about their life in London, sometimes with forays abroad.
The ladies who married before me, marching on into married life.
The ladies who moved country to live with their husbands, to Italy, to America.
Ladies with beautiful children, who take beautiful photos.
Ladies who got married after me, in the snow.
A Lady who got married the same day as me
A lady who makes wonderful driftwood sculptures.
A lady who takes gorgeous photos, and had the most colourful wedding ever!
(every link is a different blogger, do click through to them all)
And lastly, (but definitely not least) to the real life friends. Not many of them know about this space, but I'll thank those that do anyway.
To Andi, and Kathryn, for funny twitter conversations, and just for being good friends. (and for a recent pretty awesome birthday present which I'll show you soon)
My bridesmaids - my 'sister', oldest friend, and best friend. Thank you all for being beside me when I got married :)
Only one of you reads this, and I hope you don't mind me 'outing' you, but thank you for being with me through nearly all of the wedding planning, for giving me a kick up the proverbial when I needed it, for organising a brilliant hen, and for being beside me as I got married. I should probably also thank your husband (!) for not only being our wedding entertainment, but also the entertainment (purely musical I assure you) at my hen.

Thanks to all of you, and I hope you'll stick along for the ride with me.

credit where credits due, pt 1.

venue - Crosby Lodge
photographer - Anna Hardy
Bridal dress shop - Mia Bridal
Dress designer - Suzanne Neville
Stationery pieces - Daintree paper/Paperchase/Papermash/fiskars
Transport - Silver lady wedding cars
Bridesmaids outfits - Laura Ashley/Monsoon
Rings - Michael King/Wedding rings direct

etsy shops, used for jewellery for bridesmaids, and supplies for my headband: pianobenchdesigns/marynotmartha/whiteowl

Friday, 15 April 2011


I thought it worth writing about these photos on their own, since I got several different opinions on them beforehand. Personally, I'm really glad we got them, I just wish I'd had more!

(in which I realise that anna is leaving, and james stares at my chest)

We bought 8 cameras in Boots one day, they were on a BOGOF offer so we only paid for 4, and about £5 each, I don't think that's bad. I didn't buy lovely white wedding ones, there's a limit, I reach it before I buy specially-coloured-for-my-wedding disposable cameras. (Having said that I dd make labels for them all, but since they seemed to make Annas day I think it was worth it :), also, thank you R, for help with the quotes!) Bear in mind when you're costing for them that you usually pay to have them developed as well. I think this was another £5 each for us, which SIL got done while we were on honeymoon. It was great to come home tired at night, and to have 8 films to look through straight away, it filled the gap while you're waiting for the professional ones to come back. So the total cost of these was about £60.

( an in joke on the left, from lovely bridesmaid and her husband and Anna!)
I was wondering whether I would be left with a load of half empty cameras at the end of the night, but luckily we weren't. At the wedding of a friend several years ago they had these, and she was left with a lot of cameras with 10/15 photos on each left to use, the only reason we didn't was thanks to the young boys on James side of the family. This was both a blessing and a curse. We put them out on the tables for dinner, by the time the eating was over, 4 of the 8 cameras were finished! The waiting staff then separated them out for us when they cleared up, packed the finished ones away for us, and moved the half used ones out into the bar rooms for us to use. ( I didn't ask them to do this, they were just extremely thoughtful!) The boys then cottoned onto the fact that there were cameras to be used, and went about their work! Its great that we ended up with finished cameras, and no film left to use up, but the downsides were that because they got used so soon I have no record of my evening guests, and I think the boys a) often forgot to use the flash, and b) didn't vary their subjects much, so the ends of the films are largely unfocused badly lit pictures of themselves!

What I'm trying to say is that if you have a choice of when to put them out/who to give them to, do. My mum had suggested doling them out to a few people in the evening and asking them to be photographers for the night. I sort of wish I had done this now, as some people obviously love taking photos, the proof of that is in the cameras from tables who used them up completely before dinner was over. I also wish I'd maybe bought more, given that they were BOGOF anyway, and kept a few back to bring out after dinner for the evening guests. but hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

The evening of the 16th

(I've deliberated over putting photos in here, all I have is the disposables and theres no way of showing you them without showing you my entire family! so this post is image free. :( sorry)

Once we were all in the dining room everything became a lot more relaxed. My parents and I had spent quite a while sorting out the table plan, and that was even without having any complex family politics! It was lovely to see everyone start to admire the table DIY bits, to see the groups of people we had sat together start to talk (there were some surprising friendships started), to hear the silence fall as people started to eat.

Between courses people moved around, got air -I may be talking about me here, a Suzanne Neville dress does wonders for your figure, bit it does not allow for a GOOD appetite- and took photos with the disposables.

We had a wonderful time at dinner, from where we were we could see the whole room, it was lovely to let the whole atmosphere wash over me. There was plenty going on on our table, even tho my bridesmaids were from disparate parts of my life each of them had met each other once before the wedding, but none of their husbands had ever met each other, or the best man; so it was great to see them all get on. Our tables camera was finished before dinner was over. When I went off between courses a load of random things happened that I didn't get to know about until the photos were developed!

After dinner we cut the cake, with the boys watching expectantly, I think they thought we would just start serving it up there and then. Then we all started to disperse into the other rooms. The evening guests had been starting to arrive as we had our coffee, there was a buffet people raved about for them in the drawing room.

We had swing playing in the drawing room, which for a large portion of the evening hosted one large family group and a lot of cooing over a new baby.

In the bar, which is two rooms joined together by glass doors, we had a massive iPod playlist playing most of the night, but at about 8pm lovely bridesmaids husband stepped up and started to play for us. This was a very last minute decision for us, he turned out to be the 'entertainment' at my hen do, I had never heard him play before that (acoustic guitar versions of pretty much anything he has a while to put his mind to) and I told James about it, we ended up asking him about 3 weeks before the wedding!

The whole evening was very relaxed, exactly how we had wanted, and I had worried that we wouldn't get. Shock horror, we didn't do a first dance! We had chosen a song just in case, but really didn't want to, fortunately. There's no space that demands dancing, so I don't think anyone noticed. In fact, most of you may find this odd and boring, but there wasn't any dancing. We wouldn't have been bothered if people did get up and dance, we'd cleared a space for it, but no one did. It was a really nice relaxed atmosphere, with family groups and friends chatting together, catching up, and getting to know others.

By about 11ish people were starting to leave, and there were a few groups dotted around and the people who were staying the night sitting around chatting. I was quite surprised to find my parents still up and part of the biggest group, by this point I was just wafting from room to room and gazing around, the same way you do after a really good Christmas day. when the last group left/went up to bed sometime after midnight, the bar staff just cleared up around us while we sat in a quiet corner, listened to our music, finished our drinks and mulled over the day. It was a wonderful way to end the day, sitting with my new husband, in my wedding dress, doing what we would normally do on a Saturday night.