Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Wonderful Wednesday #30

Man ALIVE how the freaking bobbins is it Wednesday already?!?  If it's true that as you get older life really does speed up (which so far i concur!) then give me another couple of years and every single thing will feel like a dizzy blur! The last week has been so SO busy for me but i am also feeling a lot like i am winning at being me too and that's a really nice feeling.  Most of the time i am busy and feel as if i cross off one thing from my to-do list ('cos what is life without lists?! Best not get me started on that one) and add four more, feeling a little too overwhelmed.  Lately though, the juice of each and every second hath been squeezed and i am getting stuff done people!  Let's stop blowing our trumpet for a few moments though and discuss what littler things have been making me smile on this week so far.

*  AUTUMN!  Hells bells i can't hold it in any longer!!!  I am so excited for Autumn i can't tell you.  Operation 'must not wear tights or proper coat etc' until September is going well but i between you and i, i have picked myself a NEW tweed jacket out already (Boden HERE incase you're a nosey parker) and rifled through last seasons knits and i'm already creating outfits in my head.  I am also going to treat myself to a proper tartan blanket scarf and update my pale mink brogues to a sufficiently Autumnal tan pair.  Oh and i really reeeally want THIS skirt from lady Cath Kidston too!  I need to CALM down!  

*  Berries berries BERRIES!  In more exciting news on 'Blackberry-gate" as I mentioned and ranted and raved bout the yummy little blighters in my last five million posts; i would like to tell you that this week so far has been aaall about the humble blueberry and the razzle-dazzling raspberry.  Raspberries have been dotted on top of cottage cheese with a handful of chopped walnuts and blueberries scattered into spelt muesli and drowned in ice cold almond milk for breakfast and sometimes supper too.  

*  Bread IDEA-ing.  Let me tell you a story.  I like my bread, and i always try to make an effort to buy bread form the bakers or not least the fresh counter at my local supermarket.  I've always thought it was better for me than the horrid glue-y white squares the likes of certain big bread companies churn out.  And it probably is.  Usually bread lasts for two days or so round these parts.  But last week i forgot about a little loaf of spelt bread i had bought from the bakers.  I came across it ten days later, TEN DAYS!  And it was fine.  And that my friends is not a sign of a loaf of bread that is good for you.  In short, operation 'i'm not eating bread again until i can bloody make my own' was born. Catchy right?!  So this week i shall be delving into bread making by making my own spelt soda bread.  No rubbish, just good and wholesome ingredients.  I'm so excited to get stuck in!

*  Good skin.  My SKIN is forever affected by what i eat, how much i sleep i get and what i put into it.  I used to envy those who could stay up all night, drink gallons of diet coke and never take their make up off.  I am not one of those girls.  And to be honest now i am old enough to know better about alot more things than i used to, i'm sort of glad.  For the past few months i have worked hard on keeping my diet as fresh and seasonal as possible. I have tried to get plenty of exercise and really take time to look after my skin and it's really paying off.    Someone actually said these exact words to me on Monday:  'You're lucky, you have naturally beautiful skin.'  Oh kind lady you have NO idea…

*  Live MUSIC.  Is there a better way to listen to it?  In my opinion it's the only way to listen to music. Unless that's not possible and a close acceptable second is cycling ever so fast round and round the park with your Ipod SO loud and sometimes maybe singing.  I don't do that but you know i could…I was lucky enough to go and watch the Mr play bass for Mylittlebrother recently. Who were incidentally supporting the beautiful folk genius that is Fiona Clayton.  It was the BEST night and i highly recommend that you head over to Spotify and add them both.  Two musical acts local to me who are superb. 

*  Sleeping in LONG pyjama bottoms.  This is the Spring/Summer equivalent of the first time you sleep in just your under crackers.  Utter bliss.  Sleeping in your pyjamas as the nights get cooler is the dream.  For me it always equals the deepest most soundest of sleeps.  Bring on the hot water bottles!  Not yet though.  I don't want to peak too soon… 

*  Tealights.  Because well SOON i shall have to close the windows at night and also the curtains and so there'll be far less tealights in jam jars in Tangle Towers don't you know.  These last few days i have been dotting the little devils everywhere.  I'm secretly looking forward to tealight candlelit baths (which are far more autumn/winter appropriate than showers anyway), and for scented candles whilst i read a book in my pyjamas.  It's not all bad really…
*  *  *  
How are you all you lovely lot you?!  Have you been getting excited for Autumn?  Have you ever made your own bread and if so, got any tips?  And what are the rest of your week's looking like…?  I love to read these kinds of comments!  Remember you can also tweet me your #wonderfulwednesday on twitter.  I'm @sallytangle .  

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Home Please

It is a truth universally recognised that there is no place quite like HOME.  When you grow up and fly away from the place you were born, you make your own way and feather your own pretty NEST just the way you like it.  But there will always be home home and no matter where that is, nothing ever changes the feeling that brings.  Last weekend i snatched both Friday and Saturday up at my parents in Scotland and i could have quite easily curled up away from the hustle and bustle of city life and all that the 9 to 5 brings, and stayed and stayed and STAYED.  Being away somewhere so peaceful, quiet and in the middle of nowhere really made all the little things i often whizz past, even more lovely and stand out even more.  It was just what i needed to make myself feel all put together again.  

Some measure the SUCCESS of a weekend or few days off by quite how much they can squeeze into those two days.  Not me, well at least not last weekend.  This weekend was slow, beautiful and all about just spending time and not letting MOMENTS pass by.  It was how i wish each and every one could be.  
I am often TORN between my two favourite places to visit when i am home:  The coast or the hills and forests.  This time we chose the coast.  The bright BLUE skies were calling us and with a sky so bright and blue and and a day so warm it felt like we had made the right choice.  We chose to take along an extremely cheeky puppy and simply walked and walked barefoot in the sand. When we had been blown about and SPLASHED by puppy paws quite enough, we sat up on the grass and made coffee on a little camping stove.  I could have sat and sunk my toes into the sandy dunes all day, it was so beautiful.  
Late afternoons were spent CURLED up on the bench in the garden with a big mug of tea and a little handful of biscuits.  Why does EVERYTHING taste so much more delicious outside?!  I wish so much that i had my own little stretch of green to plant beautiful hydrangeas and ceramic tubs of basil, mint and strawberries.  I was quite happy just sat WATCHING the world go by and seeing how many butterflies i could spot on my parents huge butterfly bush.  
Evenings were spent CHASING the sunset up and down windy country lanes with ^this^ little face.  He is called Storm.  Our little man is still learning how to walk properly on a lead and still needs lot of practise.  He is far too nosey for his own good and wants to be everyones best friend and for everyone to love him.  He doesn't like to leave anything un-SNIFFED and never misses a trick and his favourite place to be is on anyones knee who'll kiss his ears and rub his tummy.  My parents have had him only four months and rescued him from a family who couldn't look after him properly.  He has learnt lots but still has a long way to go yet. You can't spend time with him and not feel happy.  Spending two days with his wagging tail and wet nose was HAPPY-making in itself.  
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This week has been such a BUSY one.  Good busy, but busy in a way that has sort of had the tiredness hitting me in one fair swoop!  I am looking forward to a little bit of a later sleep on sunday - maybe followed by some warm pastries and many a mug of tea.  Tonight i am scooting off to watch one of my favourite local artists:  Fiona Clayton, who incidentally the Mr is supporting and playing bass with Mylittlebrother.  It should be a good night.  Is it wrong that i already can't wait to be in BED on Saturday night though..?!?

How are all of your WEEKENDS looking?!  Is it jam-packed just the way you like it or are you looking forward to slowing down and snatching the last of the summer sun?!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Wonderful Wednesday #29

Happy MID-WEEK dear and lovely faces!  How do i find you all?  Is it me or is it cold?  In a massively stark contrast to the above image, i am rather relishing wearing cardigans these past few evenings.  Curled up in oversized cardigans as the rain has hammered our little attic, the wind has blown sideways and i have drank far too much tea.  And i've been okay about it you KNOW?  I have promised myself i shan't wear tights, boots, a proper coat or any kind of hat that isn't straw or a fedora until at least September.  I am raring to GO though.  I already have my eye on The Most Perfect Tartan Scarf and a new tweed blazer…i must not resist.  Around these parts has mostly been about hanging onto the last few weeks of summer and all kinds of other loveliness also…

*  CUDDLES.  If there is one thing that cooler evenings (dare i say it - darker too?) bring it is definitely more cuddles.  The kind of cuddles to keep warm and cuddles before you drift off to sleep.  In the summer, cuddles are replaced by hand holding.  But as soon as those evenings start to draw in and the temperature dips, you just can't beat a big HUG.  What a softie i am…

*  Continuing my love for ELBOW.  Since wittering on about Elbow's 'Powder Blue' last week on here, i have gone a little bit into an Elbow-shaped overdrive.  I love it though:  the way that one single song has put me back on a little meander all the way through their back catalogue on Spotify.  I have also discovered that they SNUCK out a new album this year too without me even realising!  It's been my go-to evening listen whilst i am padding about our little somewhere after a bath or shower at night.  

*  HOT showers.  It has felt that for months the only kind of shower that would have done has been a cooler one.  I have definitely been gradually increasing the temperature in my showers and enjoying rubbing extra moisturiser into my rose-y cheeks and pink knees.  

*  New OPPORTUNITIES.  Whilst i can't go into too much detail, my name might be appearing in a few other places apart from this dear little space in the next few months.  This makes me SO excited i cannot tell you.  And I also equally want to give you all the hugest big hug for popping by and reading this LITTLE corner because without this platform, well i wouldn't be where i am now and for that i am forever grateful to you all.  

*  My own BED.  Whilst i love going away and i dearly love spending time at home-home with my family, unless i have a fair few days in a row up there i can never sleep well.  What is it about your own bed?!  You just can't beat it.  I think that even if i was in the most expensive hotel in all of the land then i wouldn't sleep quite as well as i do in my own.  

*  PEANUT BUTTER.  To think i went most of my life thinking that i didn't like peanut butter is beyond me.  I only tried it after graduating from uni and i have never looked back.  I like to think that it gives me an excuse to eat a bit more than a regular person - girl's got ground to make up!  Lately it has been slathered on spelt toast after a little fruit and natural yoghurt breakfast-ing.  I have also been loving spreading it thick on tart green apple wedges or dunking carrot batons into it.  Or you know, just off the spoon, on a bad day…It's got to be crunchy though, its got to be!

*  Particularly PRODUCTIVE days.  Is it just me or some days don't you just feel like you could run the world?!? Tuesday felt like i got so much done and achieved over and above what i had intended.  These days are few and far between and need to be celebrated.  I just wish i had more of them 'cos i feel like i have been given the best ROCKET fuel for the rest of the week ahead!  

*  Sleeping in PYJAMAS again.  By that i mean a loose cotton smock top and cotton pyjama trousers after what has felt like months (and delicious months at that!) of curling up wearing only underwear or a sweet little silk cami top.  I slept in pyjamas for the very first time last night.  I could hear the wind and rain whipping against the skylight above my head and i felt the COSIEST i have felt in a long time.  It was a little bit delightful.  

What has been making your week BEARABLE then you wonderful lot you?!?  Are you a peanut butter fiend?!  Have you been relishing in the wind and the rain?  And what have you got to look forward to this weekend?!?!  Pleased do share because reading your comments is the BEST thing.  Remember you can always tweet me your #wonderfulwednesday.  I'm @sallytangle.  

Friday, 8 August 2014

Powder Blue

Have you ever listened to 'POWDER BLUE' by Elbow?  If you havent then may i suggest you pop over HERE and give it your ALL for the 4.31 minutes it tickles your ears?  It's one of my very favourite songs in the whole wide world.  Yet its also a song that is buried deep, deep in the depths of my (very full!) IPod and one that is also a bit of an oldie to me.  I tend to forget it exists.  Then all of a sudden i can be tootling to work or a million miles away with my thoughts sat by the cathedral with a big coffee in hand or even just padding about at home and it SNEAKS into my ears.  I am mesmerised all over again and just as much as i was the first time i ever heard it.  A delightful shuffle-shaped treat for the ears which usually results in me hitting 'repeat' and getting lost in it over and over for at least an hour.  That happened yesterday. I lay in a star shape on our bed for half an hour and FELL right into it completely.  It was just what i needed.  Lately has been exhausting me. I am extremely looking forward to spending this weekend up in Scotland with my parents amongst all of the green and beside the seaside.  I thought i should drop by and update with you life around here lately before i bounced across the border though…
I have been trying my best to SLOW down lately.  When work is so very busy i find it so hard to just sit still and slow down my pace when i am at home.  I fidget, i half read things, half watch things and don't listen properly.  I also bump into things a lot.  Switching off from everything (almost) electrical - not counting netflix, British Bake Off etc - in the evenings has really helped.  But my day off yesterday hit me hard.  I really had to struggle to get up and felt like i could have slept for an eternity.  Copious cups of tea, a little victoria sponge and lots of cuddles have helped though.  I think my body is more than ready to slow down for a few days.  
*  *  *  
Aren't the evenings getting darker?!  My after tea-shaped bike rides have me CHASING the sun all the way home and getting there just as it sinks behind the last of the day.  I have also been notching the shower temperature up a little and a little bit enjoying a slouchy fine knit slung around my pyjamas in the evenings.  I have also been trying to make the most of getting out and about in the GREEN before whizz and bang, it just blows all away.  The very last of the wildflowers are lingering and my favourite wild hydrangea in the park is looking very sorry for itself!  

I have been snatching all of the SUNSHINE that the days have given.  Days that end like the above are worth savouring for as long as possible. I never get bored of watching the sun breaking through the trees and feel as if i could sit and watch it forever.  Sometimes i do.
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In other much more MUNDANE and less interesting, 'catch up' shaped news:

*  i tried coconut milk for the first time this week.  Oh my.  I think it could be my favourite yet.  I'm wondering if it would work as well in porridge…?

*  The Mr accidentally cut off most of his beard this week in an electric shaving-shaped emergency.  I miss it already.  A man with a beard is pretty high up on my list.  I can't express my sadness too much though as he is as equally distraught as me.  I am hoping that it will grow back quickly!

*  After having seen hardly any wasps this summer we are having some what of a wasp infestation in our little somewhere.  I have had to artfully (read:  glass and envelope/harshly wafted tea towel/a stern word or ten) remove four in the last 48 hours.  

*  We watched the first episode of The Great British Bake Off on Wednesday evening and i am already counting down the days until the next one.  In fact, i even watched it again over breakfast yesterday morning.  

*  I read the new Simple Things magazine cover to cover on Wednesday evening whilst lay on the sofa with the Mr and a big cup of chai tea.  It's been so long since i did that.  Praise be to leaving that phone of mine in the other room and long may it continue!

*  I have been sleeping better than ever before and feeling ever so much more productive, bouncy and happy - long may this also continue.

*  We had a little jaunt to a Gap outlet at the weekend (i know right GAP OUTLET) it's only taken us about two years and the Mr's jeans to pretty much disintegrate to get us to bloody go.  We stocked up on jeans, and i wanted to buy THE WHOLE LOT OF EVERYTHING.  Man i love Gap.  I hadn't realised quite how much until last weekend.  We have already made a pact to return once autumn hits so that we can stock up on jumpers, socks and cosy apparel.  I am already excited.  

*  Evenings spent watching the Good Food channel is pretty much the only reason to have Sky lately.  Who doesn't want to watch Rachel Khoo, Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall on tap..?!

Consider yourself fully updated you lucky DUCKS.  What have you all been UP to then?  Any plans for this weekend?  I am wishing you all a splendid one!  And if you could all cross your fingers and toes for some Scottish sunshine for me too then that would be great thanks. 

Have a GOOD and GREAT couple of days!  

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Wonderful Wednesday #28

How do you DOODLE-DO my dear and lovely faces?!  I hope your weeks' have been full of mostly lovely-shaped things, and that you have excellent weekend plans coming up too.  It's not so healthy to wish wish and wish our lives away (especially since they move so bloomin' fast most of the time) but we all do it.  I am terrible for it.  We all count down the days, watch the clock and tip tap our feet and fingers in anticipation of something…i think its a part of the human condition.  I digress…because well, if going off on a tangent was an olympic sport, i wouldn't work at Monsoon Towers, i would be clutching ALL of the medals!  What has been keeping my little being jolly this week so far then…?! 

*  BLACKBERRIES.  Yes they are featuring consecutively - i praised them last week and i am going to blooming well praise them again this week.  'Cos its my WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY and they darn well deserve it.  This week i have been shoving them in all manner of delectable breakfast delights.  My current favourites are smashed and squashed blackberries (best when they are a little bit sad and past their best) dolloped on top of warm buttery waffles with just a dusting of icing sugar.  I have also been especially enjoying a smashed blackberry or two, spooned on top of crunchy peanut butter on toasted spelt bread - DELIGHTFUL

*  Feeling a 'NIP' in the air.  What was i saying about wishing my life away?!? If wishing your life away is part of the human condition, you can bet your bottom dollar that wishing the seasons away is part of the blogger condition!!  I got up on Monday morning and padded across our wooden floor to flip on the kettle on to feel that the DRAFT from the slightly open kitchen window was a cool and NIPPY one.  It made me a little excited for AUTUMN…but ssh don't tell anyone.  We will just keep it between you and I, yes?  I stuck my head out of the window and took a deep breath and the smell was entirely reminiscent of new school uniforms, hard leather school shoes waiting to be broken in and the like…it was delicious.  And for a moment, i almost dug out the saucepan to make porridge….

*  Being MINDFUL.  I know i know, the word 'mindful' is everywhere lately. Or at least i feel as if it is.  During a normal working week i regularly feel exhausted, restless and spend far too much time flipping through instagram, twitter and pinterest.  I have started to give myself a little time to check emails, social media etc when i get in of an evening, and then i have been leaving my phone in the next room.  And do you know WHAT?!  Not only have i laughed, rested, talked and made much more use of my evenings, but i have also slept a whole lot better too.  It's something i am definitely going to stick too.  

*  Johnson's BABY Bedtime Cream.  I know its for babies and i know it shouldn't be, but man ALIVE i try all of the body lotions in all of the lands and i always come back to this GEM.  It just proves that the old chestnut of 'if it's not broken then don't fix it' really rings true.  This heavenly, clean smelling and slightly lavender scented half body lotion-come-body butter is a DREAM.  It's just a bit thicker than a regular day to day lotion but not enough to make you feel sticky and do you know what?!  My knees and elbows have never been softer.  And its costs £2.50 for a whopping great pot.   

*  Walnuts.  I LOVE nuts.  I really have to watch myself  'cos i could quite happily munch a bag of them if i am not careful.  Just call me SQUIRREL NUTKIN.  Lately i can't get enough of walnuts.  They're a filling, darker and much richer nut than most and i love the way they go with so so many things.  This week they have been PILED upon my cottage cheese after a quick flash in a dry hot pan to give a toasty taste and an extra crunch.  The other evening i tossed them in a pan for a few moments; dusted them with vanilla sugar and crumbled them on top of a late night feast of over ripe peach and greek yoghurt.  Give them a go and if you do, give me a shout! Equally if you have any 'way with walnuts' i should know about give me a nudge!  I feel a HASHTAG comin' on…

*  RAIN. I know right, rain?!?  But when you have had such solid heat, sun and sticky sleeping sort of nights, it's a lot exciting to smell a delicious summer evening downpour and to CURL up properly under a duvet and listen to raindrops hitting the skylight.  

*  Maroon 5.  God BLESS Spotify.  I know i have been ranting and raving about technology this week but what did we all do before Spotify hey?!  This week i have RE-KINDLED my all time love for Maroon 5 (and possibly the YUM that is Adam Levine).  We are not talking 'Moves Like Jagger' and lots much more 'Songs About Jane' shaped.  I bloody LOVE that album.  I have been skipping up to work with 'Harder to Breathe' in my ears on more days than i should probably admit. Read:  ALL of the days.

*  The Mr and his new and beautiful acoustic guitar.  There is something infinitely magical and mesmerising about a man yielding a guitar.  ^see above case point^  I don't often get the chance to watch him play one on one.  Normally i am squashed somewhere sweaty, dark and in closer proximity with strangers than i should care to be.  This week the Mr bought a new acoustic guitar.  LISTENING and watching him play whilst i peered over my magazine was a little bit of LOVELY i'd quite like always please.  I'd do ANYTHING for a man with a guitar…..shameless but true.  Sorry...

What have been your HIGHLIGHTS this week so far lovely lot?!  Do SHARE!  I love to read the comments on these posts the very most!  I am a nosey parker - aren't we ALL?!?  Where do you stand on Maroon 5?  Have you toasted walnuts lately?  Fancy tryin' it out?  Is it just me who is excited for that first 'nip' in the air!?  Let me know here or share your #wonderfulwednesday with me on twitter.  I'm @sallytangle! 

Monday, 4 August 2014

Currently #20

All pretty pictures taken from my Pinterest HERE
Currently i am falling a little bit in LOVE with ORANGE.  Not just plain old orange though.  We are talking pinks and peaches paired with each and every hue and ombre of this delightful little colour that you can imagine.  Isn't it funny how pairing colours with other ones can completely change how you feel about a colour?!  I have never been an ORANGE lover.  And whilst i love PINK i am much more likely to favour a barely there paler than pale pink over a bubble gum or bright baby shade any day.  Pair a bubble gum pink with orange and i love it.  It makes me think of summer, of the tropical, of brightly coloured chewy sweets and of the nineties, oddly enough:  all bright and brilliant and a little bit in your face.  

I also love the QUOTE by Patti Smith and it pretty much sums up exactly how i have been feeling lately:  all wandering mind, IMAGINARY everythings and generally a little bit of a lot on cloud nine!  With maybe a little tiny toe in reality…it's nice to imagine and be silly and not take things seriously here and there though.  Don't you agree?  Plus this is a nice way to start off a Monday: a positive collection of words by an inspirational lady encouraging a little bit of creativity! 

And the print, oh the PRINT i just adore.  If i could make softly tapered cotton palazzo pants in ^that^ fabulous slice of print then i would be so happy.  Imagine, a pretty printed trouser in such a pretty print as that, with a soft cotton PINK striped breton tee and a sweet pair of brogues?!  Maybe one day soon i might also get round to dying that blonde barnet of mine a crazy PINK too…Happy MONDAY lovely faces!


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