Thursday, 29 November 2012

Are you a saver or a splurger?


I was pondering recently whether we are in the minority because we don't have any savings speak of. We have a very small disposable income and having been silly with money in our youth have never managed to save up a rainy day fund. We have a very bad habit of relying on the credit card if we need and emergency repair or other mishap sorting.

Every year we say we are going to try and accrue some but we always find it's the case that if we do manage to save a few coppers then something will break so we have to blow the savings on that.

I do wonder whether the ability to save is a genetic trait, either you can or you can't. I'm very much a splurger!! I've always found that money burns a hole in my pocket, I love shopping and always have something on my wish list - very rarely are the items on my list extravagant but there is usually something I am hankering after.

I can't remember ever managing to save up for anything unless you count selling things on eBay until have the amount I need - that's how I raised the money for my iPad.

My sister is exactly the opposite and from a young age she liked nothing more than counting her growing collection of pennies into her red cash tin - she now is very good with money, so it's my opinion that you can probably tell early on whether your children a going to be a saver or a splurger!!

However, I must confess that the advice given to me by the 101 year old lady in the pub on my birthday springs to mind - she said "Let me give you some advice, my dear. Spend your money. Don't save it. Spend it and enjoy. Don't save it like I did. It's no use to me now."

Maybe she had a point....


S x


Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Mini Makeover....

This weekend we made over a little spot in our (tiny) kitchen that had hitherto been an eyesore.

Ever since I saw Cherry Menlove's gorgeous open white shelves I have hankered after some of my own but the problem was where to put them.

I also really disliked the cooker hood and splashback we had above our range:

We used to have a stainless steel range that matched the hood and splashback, but after that finally gave up the ghost we found this fab Aga-like Leisure range on eBay for the bargain price of £150 and for well over a year I have put up with the mismatch (some kinds of mismatch are NOT good!!)

I got to thinking about what we could do to prettify this area of the kitchen - this involved laying in bed at night hatching all manner of plans - 99% of which are rubbish in the light of day - and decided we should remove the hood (we never use it as its not connected to the outdoors and just "extracts" back into the room) and build some sort of unit or shelves.

Then came the persuasion of Mr G.

It took weeks.

And in the end I had to put my foot down.

So on Saturday I marched him to the wallpaper shop, we chose paper and on our return the hood came down and the paper went up:

Already looking soooooo much better!!

The conversion of Mr G to all things floral, vintage and shabby chic was proved complete when he came up with the idea to paper the back of the plate rack.

On Sunday, off we trotted to B&Q where - following a brief hiatus for a row over fairy lights - we got the material for the shelves.

Mr G got down to one of mans most hated tasks - erecting shelves:

I was beyond excited!! I danced about waiting for the moment when I could fill them with pretty things:

I've ordered new Cath Kidston labels for the flour jars!!
We're sooooo pleased with how they have turned out - Mr G went as far as to say it's his favourite makeover to date - which is high praise indeed considering he was against doing anything in that area.

I still dislike the stainless splashback and will now work on getting Mr G to tile over it - resistance is futile.....


S x


Thursday, 15 November 2012

Ooopsy, Vanished There For A Bit....

Hello, my lovelies!! I haven't vanished off the face of the earth, just somewhat lost my blogging mojo a bit. Like many of the other Instagram addicts I've met, the instantness (is that a word?) of IG does mean one is less inclined to blog.

But, I must not neglect my little space on the web and I pledge to post at least once a week from now on.

So, what have I been up to?

On Monday it was Mr G's (41st) birthday and so last weekend we ventured off sans children to Lyncombe Lodge Hotel in Churchill, North Somerset. I had booked it via a KGB deal an it was just £69 for two nights.

We set off on Friday after the children had gone to school and headed to Frome where we had a lovely lunch in the Garden Cafe and a mooch around the shops:

We had a walk up the pretty Catherine's Hill, home to vintage, yarn and fabric shops - I felt bit bad as it was Mr G's birthday weekend yet we kept going in all the kinds of shops I adore. He was very sweet though and insisted I look in every shop I wanted to.

All was not lost though as at the top of the hill we found a model shop so we had a good mooch around that - it was literally floor to ceiling with Airfix kits and as Mr G had loved them as a child there was much tripping down memory lane.

After a lovely little potter we headed off to the hotel which was about a half hour away according to the sat nav.

It was a very scenic drive but as we approached the end of the route the surroundings were getting more and more built up and as the hotel was meant to be in the middle of nowhere I was getting confused. Soon, the sat nav man declared "you have reached your destination" whilst we were in the middle of what appeared to be a council estate!!

"This can't be right" I said and decided to double check the postcode I had entered.



I had put in BA5 instead of BS5 and we were in Bath!!

I entered the correct postcode and it revealed we were now 50 minutes from the hotel!! Mr G took it with very good grace - as always - one of the many things I adore about him is his laidbackness (?) I have memories of my Dad's dreadful rants when Mum cocked up the navigating - he used say "Get the map out" and we'd all cringe!!

So, after another scenic drive we arrived at our hotel, which was indeed, in the middle of woods and very rural:

We checked in and were shown to our room:

My first comment was "Wouldn't the bed look fab with a coat of Annie Sloan paint and some Cath Kidston drapes?"!! Mr G was unimpressed to discover I had packed my knitting on a "dirty weekend"!!

On Saturday we headed into Wells which is such a pretty town, and had a look around the shops. And we ate our way around the market:

We went through an archway at the end to be greeted with a beautiful cathedral:

Look at that sky!! That's with no filter - we were very lucky with the weather....

We took a moment to step inside:

And I lit a candle for my Dad:

After lunch (organic sausages in rolls with onions, yum) we headed off to call in to my dear friend Cuckoo from Tales From Cuckoo Land. I had emailed her for recommendations of places to visit because I knew she lived in the area and when it transpired how close we'd be she invited us to pop in.

I wasn't going to push it with Mr G as it was, again, something for me on his birthday weekend but he was more than happy for us to go over for a cuppa.

We were greeted with open arms - Cuckoo and her family made us feel soooooo welcome. She has the most beautiful warm, homely house and I could have literally spent the whole weekend sat in front of the real fire in Cuckoos sewing room (which is so beautiful I was open-jawed and completely forgot to take a picture).

Cuckoo is another person I have met through blogging whom I feel I have known in a previous life, and I came away with a huge girl crush:

Saturday night Mr G and I ventured out for pizza, I ate way too much and my anxiety induced nausea threatened to get the better of me but with the help of a cheeky Valium I managed to keep it at a manageable level and not spoil the whole evening. We retired to bed to watch Prison Break on Lovefilm - very rock 'n roll.

After we checked out on Snday we headed home via Shepton Mallet as it was the Antique and Collectors Fair (oops that's another thing for me - I will say I kept telling him to Google for motorbike shops or any other boy things he fancied but he said he wasn't fussed).

On Monday (Mr G's actual birthday) we had lunch in our favourite pub

The birthday boy himself....

They do the most amazing homemade pies

Thanks for reading, I've not much else to report but I will do another post shortly to show you my latest crafty doings....


S x