Tuesday, 30 April 2013

A hymn to the Postal Service

...  not the band, who have recently reformed (although I would've liked to have seen them on tour, but I'm out of the country that week!) - but the postal service who've delivered some beautiful pieces of snail mail to me lately.

Above: I received two lovely letters and a brilliant 60s mix CD from Kate last month - along with some washi tape, hurrah!

..And this week I really enjoyed reading a letter from Rachel in California, including some photos from her amazing road trip across the States and this postcard, 'Cattle Punching on a Jack Rabbit' (not quite sure what that means!) which I loved.

I do enjoy getting interesting post - let me know if you'd like to swap letters too.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Film Friday: Abigail's Party

I recently watched Abigail's Party for the first time, and really enjoyed it. I'd seen and loved Nuts in May, another film directed by Mike Leigh for the BBC's 'Play for Today' series, but barely recognised the lead actor who also stars in Abigail's Party, Alison Steadman. Her character was so different in both roles - which proves how talented she is! Would definitely recommend a viewing of Abigail's Party if you haven't seen it. (You can watch it here.) It has some very funny moments amongst all the social awkwardness. And be warned, it may leave you craving a gin & tonic or two!

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Q and A

[A little about me for any new readers..]

How would you describe perfect happiness?

Being content and loved, sunshine and nature

What’s your greatest fear?

Illness, death of loved ones

If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

In Tom's old room, inside the den we built

Which living person do you most admire?

My dad. My brother. And Tom's mum.

What are your most overused words or phrases?

"Oh dear"

What do you regret most?

Worrying too much about silly things

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

Just knowing at least one great song on the piano... I'm learning!

What is your greatest achievement?

Having a poem about my cat published when i was at school. It was called Ghost Cat...

What’s your greatest flaw?

Obsessing over silly things

What’s your best quality?


If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?


What trait is most noticeable about you?

Social awkwardness? 

If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?

Nellie Bly - I'd ask her about her world travels and how she found being one of the first female journalists

What is your biggest pet peeve?

People who shout and swear at their kids, or rude people in general!

If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

Pizza / anything with cheese

What are your 5 favorite songs?

Pavement - Shady Lane, PJ Harvey - Dress, Blur - This is a Low, Talking Heads - This Must be the Place, Squeeze - Up the Junction

Who are your favorite authors?

Jeffrey Brown, Craig Thompson, George Orwell, Francoise Sagan, Lucy Knisley, Haruki Murakami


Sunday, 21 April 2013

Painting the town red in Melton Mowbray

Tom and I had a lovely wander around Melton Mowbray this weekend. In case you're unfamiliar with the market town, it's famous mainly for two things - being the home of pork pies, and being the place where the phrase "painting the town red" originates!

The area is also the home of stilton cheese, so things weren't entirely bad for a visiting vegetarian. We popped into Ye Old Pork Pie Shoppe, where Tom picked out an immense pie (and I bought a cheese and onion pasty) and we headed to the park in the sunshine for a picnic.

The only disappointment in Melton was the lack of records in the local charity shops. With it being Record Store Day on Saturday I was hoping to pick up a few gems, but no such luck! I later met up with some friends in the Arboretum who had quite an impressive haul bought from Rob's Records in Nottingham though, a place I still need to visit.


Friday, 19 April 2013

Film Friday: The Future

I'd been waiting a while to watch The Future, as I didn't manage to see it when it was on at the cinema. I really like Miranda July, and enjoyed Me You & Everyone We Know several years ago. The Future revolves around a couple who adopt a (talking) cat, and this changes the way they view their world. The film started off well, as the couple decided to cancel their internet and quit their jobs to live more free lives for 30 days. However the talking cat moments started to grate on me a little and I only managed to get through two thirds of the film before losing interest. What did other people make of it I wonder? Should I have persevered?

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Lovely Links

Some links to cheer up your April...

A giant polaroid in the street catches people's smiles via SoulPancake (there are lots of other nice videos on this network, run by Rainn Wilson aka Dwight from the American Office)

How to lose yourself in Paris via Messy Nessy Chic

Where to get inspiration via Pikaland

Becky made these brilliant little 'yokai' or crocheted Japanese monsters. They're very cute and each has its own story!

I'm going to go eyebombing. Yes.

Illustrator Giulia Sagramola shows how she makes hand-made stamps. I need to try this.

Bethel's crocheted yarn bombs do indeed rock! (*I also love how this lady pronounces crochet to rhyme with kosher..)  via Got a Girl Crush


Sunday, 14 April 2013

5 Memories of April

I decided to dig through my photo archives to see what I was up to in April over the last five years...

In April 2009 I was exploring a sculpture park in the Netherlands with my friend Gerdien..

In April 2010 we taught our cat Rosie to dance...

In April 2011 some friends from uni visited Nottingham, and we found a nice sunny spot in the Arboretum...

In April 2012 Ada the Globetrotting Doll visited us...

And in April 2013 I had a lovely trip to Wollaton Park, where we played Extreme Frisbee in front of the hall.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Film Friday: Pretty Woman

As I've not been feeling very well this week I decided to pick a film that required little effort to watch! I'd not seen Pretty Woman since I was around 12 (for some reason, my Nan used to own it on VHS..) The main revelation on watching it again was the fact that Edward's sleazy business partner was played by Jason Alexander aka a pre-Seinfeld George Costanza. This added an element of humour to certain scenes which shouldn't have been funny!

I did enjoy the Roxette song at the end of the film, and may or mat not have sung along, ahem.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Recipe: Feta & Spinach Pie

I seem to be making quite a few veggie pies recently! This one was inspired by Greek Spanakopita. Filo pastry is really fun to use (although messy!). I followed this recipe, but used just one egg and it worked out to be rather scrumptious. Serve with a side of salad and some garlic bread for a perfect spring-time meal.


Sunday, 7 April 2013

8 reasons to love Nottingham

I have lived in Nottingham for almost seven years now and although I love visiting new cities there are lots of reasons why Nottingham is a great place to live. I enjoyed reading Sally's reasons to love London I thought I'd write a list of my own for the fair city of Nottingham (without even a mention of Robin Hood!).

1. Cinemas galore
As well as the multiplexes there are three independent cinemas here. The Broadway is a brilliant place to meet up, and shows a wide range of independent and foreign films. They do darn good pizzas too and their quiz nights are pretty fun (although can be very tough!). The Savoy Cinema is a lovely old-fashioned cinema on Derby Rd which a lot of Nottingham-folks claim never to have been to (why?!). It's a great building and I'd definitely recommend a trip there if you're in Notts. There's also the brilliant Kneel Before Zod movie nights, who specialise in showing B-movies and other rarities.

2. Hockley
Hockley is the 'arty' side of town and is home to independent shops and nice cafes, like Lee Rosy's tea shop, Edin's and the Jam Cafe. I always enjoy walking through this part of town and the nearby Lace Market is such a pretty area to explore.

3. The people
After moving here for my first job post-uni I have met so many friendly folks that it would make moving away pretty hard. Nottingham is home to two universities and I know lots of people who've stayed here after graduating which is further proof of the city's appeal.

4. The Left Lion
As well as being the traditional spot for meeting up with friends, LeftLion is a free home-produced magazine which is always fun to read and full of interviews with creative types from around the city.

5. The pubs
I often forget that Nottingham is actually filled with great pubs. From the Malt Cross, the Roundhouse, the Hand & Heart and the Organ Grinder on Canning Circus, you're never far from a cosy pub.

6. The Park
I've mentioned the Park before on here - it's an area situated near Nottingham Castle (which isn't really a castle..but hey!) full of pretty houses, old fashioned street lamps and a posh tennis court. And not forgetting the Park Tunnel, (above) which is pretty amazing to stumble across.

7. Wollaton Park
A slightly different park, Wollaton Hall & Park is situated a short bike ride from the city centre and is home to deer, a stuffed gorilla and most recently, Bruce Wayne.

8. It's only a stone's throw from the Peak District (not forgetting my glorious home town of Derby!)


Album Beauty

Last month I nipped into Derby's art gallery and cinema, Quad which hosts an international photography festival each year called Format. There is an exhibition on currently called Album Beauty by Erik Kessels, which is 'an ode to the vanishing era of the photo album'. I love looking through old photo albums, and although I haven't had any photos printed for a while now I always enjoy looking back through my albums from my childhood and university years and getting all nostalgic.

In the gallery old photographs and album pages are enlarged so it's almost like stepping inside the pages of an album. I really enjoyed looking through some of the photos - one album was entirely dedicated to the owner's poodle which was quite amusing. The exhibition runs until May 26 at Quad, you can read a bit more about it here. (Apologies for the poor photos, I only had my phone with me!)


Friday, 5 April 2013

Film Friday: Romy & Michelle's High School Reunion

Usually our TV is reserved for computer games or watching box-sets of The Wire (which I've gradually become rather addicted to). But last Sunday whilst Tom was out I decided to seize the opportunity to watch a nice girly film. I hadn't seen Romy & Michelle in years (I used to have it on VHS) and it was good to rewatch it, for all its colourful outfits and rocking 80s soundtrack. And after watching it, I did feel obliged to Google the inventor of Post Its..

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Just a minute - April

Watching Girls, season 1. I finally got a copy and I'm enjoying it so far. Though I hear season 2 isn't as good. (Also I've discovered it's not really one to watch whilst eating your dinner!)

Listening to Tom's wedding band play cover songs at the weekend. The first time I've heard the Blind Date theme being played at a wedding!

Reading all about a road trip adventure down Route 66 on Tea & Oatmeal - and getting wanderlust

Munching on Cadbury's creme eggs. Sadly I got zero Easter eggs this year so made up for it by making rice crispy cakes and buying a creme egg..

Sending out new zines to special folks (including the winner of my giveaway - Viv in New Zealand!)

Enjoying the evenings getting lighter. Finishing work in the daylight is pretty good! Although the wind still is nippy I think spring is on its way!

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