Thursday, 30 June 2011

The Month of June

Started beautifully, well I was on half term....
Meeting Ma and Pops in town. A sunny lunch in Embankment Gradens, off to a matinee of Flarepath, with Sienna Miller no less. Amazed as Ma tried to order tea for the interval and then preceded to say "When one used to order tea at matinees intervals it was brought to you on a tray at your seat." Followed by Early Supper at Gilbert and Scott. The restautarant at St. Pancras hotel. My it's an amazing place. All in all it felt as if I should be wearing a neat hat with a small veil, a clip close handbag, and perfect red lipstick.
A sunny supper on The Southbank... So sunny that I merrily walked to London bridge rather than tubing it.

Birthday Days....
Warmth had the day off. We bought my iphone yippeee!!
A very small birthday gathering this year. Drinks at The Gherkin and then supper at Rocket City.
Continuing with Twin, Blessings and parents on the Saturday at The Red House. A glorious picnic in glorious gardens. The sun shone.
Such lovely gifts. My first Barbara Pym (Excellent Women) in the Orla Kiely edition, a much needed gardening book for when we finally have a garden, a Macaron cookbook and a box of delicious Yauatcha macarons. Cath Kidston disposable picnic set - I'd admired from afar. Twin knows me well.Some Katherine Mansfield short stories and Deborah Mitford Wait for me! Very fitting as I'm reading Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire at the moment.

Supper and drinks in town with friends - a repeat visit to The Wine Wharf.
Enjoying going to The Summer Exhibition on a very soggy Sunday with Warmth. More tempted by a cup of tea than a glass of Pimms.
Rain, rain and more rain...
Meeting a dear friend for supper we hurried to the nearest restaurant and thankfully it was good.
Exploring Marylebone Summer Fair - on a dry day....
Discovering a Mulberry bag I'd been idly coveting in the sale and now affordable. Reader, I bought it.
A walk along The Southbank with Warmth.
Exploring more of St. Pancras this time the Bookings Bar. Delicious rose, bar snacks, talking and laughing with a dear friend.
Attending the retirement party for a former head teacher, of a school I taught at. So lovely to see parents of children I taught there, former colleagues, relive memories and hear more of her memories since teaching there since 1972. In true British style it was planned to be outside and we continued for much of it under gazebos and umbrellas before finally taking refuge in the school hall.
Attending Mortlake Summer Fair with friends. Then sitting in a pub garden with view of the Thames, drinking Pimms, eating, wearing sunglasses and generally enjoying a lovely British Saturday in summer.
A beautiful sunday mooching along Lorship Lane and delicious tea and cake at Le Chandelier.
A summer supper in Angel. Sitting sipping a peach Bellini in Browns with the wide windows flung open. Then meandering along for a delicious turkish supper with lots to catch up on.

Baking Hummingbird Peanut Butter biscuits for our Birthday picnic. Baking cakes for work - Early Grey Tea Loaf, Hummingbird Bakery Banana Loaf and Nigella's Quadruple Chocolate Loaf. A repeat baking of the Peanut Butter (with added currants) Biscuits on a wet Sunday afternoon. After all that cake it was time for healthy eating.

Books read. Excellent Women by Barbara Pym. One Day by David Nicholls, read in one day. Reading it straight after Excellent Women I think Barbara Pym would have said Emma Morley was an Excellent Woman. Georgiana Duchess of Devonshire by Amanda Foreman.
On a technical note getting very frustrated with blogger. I can't do any editing in compose mode, only in Edit Html. This means no centering of words and makes it look a little unsightly and is also a bit if a faff. Do any of you lovely bloggers have the same experience or can offer any help on how to resolve it.
How was your June?

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Celia, Celia

Celia, Celia by Adrian Mitchell

When I am sad an weary,
When I think all hope has gone,
When I walk along High Holborn
I think of you with nothing on.

This poem has always made me smile. And then I stumbled across this picture on a newly discovered blog that's just my cup of tea, or champagne.

Monday, 27 June 2011

The Happiest Summer

'...came the happiest summer Nanda had ever known. The weather was perfect. Every day dawned clear and soft and unfolded through hours of sunlight to long evenings smelling of hay and lime-trees. There was a kind of gaiety and relaxation in the air; hair hung more loosely and sleeves were rolled up unreproved over browning arms. Even the bells sounded less insistent; they chimed in a lazy, worldly voice like old stable clocks. It was good to come in, flushed from tennis, to the cool, sweet-smelling chapel; to sit in a weeping willow after supper surreptiously learning La Nuit de Mai; to find a chestnut flower against one's skin when undressed at night.' Antonia White Frost in May
The weather this weekend has been true summer weather. Long may it last....

Friday, 24 June 2011

A glorious feeling of well-being

'That's what's so wonderful about living out of England,' he said, pacing round the small kitchen, ' such a glorious feeling of well-being, sitting at a table in the sun with a bottle of what-ever it happens to be - there's nothing to equal that, is there?' Barbara Pym Excellent Women
I think Rocky probably meant something of the alcoholic variety but I found this image and loved it.
Not wanting to wish my life away but this current June weather has really made me want to be away and on holiday.
Where in the world would you like to be?

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Soggy with champagne

So far this week has been a little drier than last week. Last week I was soggy on many occasions. Oh to have been
'soggy with champagne' not rain....

Gabriel Garcia Marquez Love in the time of Cholera

Monday, 20 June 2011


'Ah, there he was! He had come into the centre court to play a single. He was pulling his sweater over his head. There were his arms and his neck...
Noel Yarde began to serve. Jane was astounded by his speed and strength... Her eyes darted after him wherever he went; she never looked at the other player.
Goodness, but he was beautiful! She had not known he was so beautiful as this; his lean hips, his long stretch of arm and leg, the way his head was set on his neck. How he played! His shirt hung wetly to his back. Was he winning? Jane hadn't an idea, and daren't ask. Her eyes followed him unceasingly.'
Dorothy Whipple High Wages

Ralph Lauren

Who will be your Wimbledon heart throb this year?

Wednesday, 15 June 2011


Twin I celebrated our birthday together by visiting 'The Red House'. Oh the gardens....
Whilst walking along one wonderful footpath the senses were awakened first by the most amazing scent and then the bright yellow of Mimosa.
I then read this passage in one of my birthday books.
'There was a barrow full of spring flowers just opposite.
'Oh, look, mimosa!' I exclaimed... 'I must have some.'
'I couldn't resist it,' I said. 'It makes one think....'
'Of Italy and the Riviera, of course.'
...'It's just that it seemed such a lovely day and I felt I wanted it.'
'Yes, that's a better reason.'
Barbara Pym Excellent women

The coincidence of this, along with it being one of The colours this summer, loving the scent so much and having a lovely new phone I took a picture....

And then Rose posted about L'Artisan Parfumeur's scent Mimosa Pour Moi.

And so this post had to be written.

Monday, 13 June 2011


Very early on whilst watching the play Flarepath last week a thought struck me...

Here was war written by a man, with men waiting to go to battle and all their thoughts and feelings. I reflected that most of the books I read tend to be about the women who are long term left behind by their husbands and their thoughts and feelings. I don't really read about the side of war that is portrayed in Flarepath. Visiting your husband, waiting for him to come back from the latest RAF mission. The tension. How the men cope with this day to day, every day.

It's an unfinished thought but did the men who were fighting write poetry - it's more immediate can be written on a scrap of paper. The women books - longer as they had longer to explore their feelings.
Please help me finish this thought - by sharing yours.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Sunshine & Campari

Slightly summed up my birthday weekend...

"The thing is,' she said, high on sunshine and Campari,' Penelope Lively Consequences

Hoping your weekend is full of sunshine and....

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Peaches on the lawn

I really enjoyed The Rector's Daughter and for a novel about people who live their lives somewhat frugallythere were two mentions of peaches...

'the year went round with its accustomed routine:... summer treats; garden- and tennis-parties,... the Clerical Book Club tea, with peaches on the lawn;

There are some peaches in the tent. I always think the one point of a party is the peaches.' F.M. Mayor The Rector's Daughter


Which fruit are you looking forward to eating most this summer?

Monday, 6 June 2011


I like Forest Hill but I shall never love it. There is not a decent florist. I have not been able to buy a single peony this summer.
So to make up for it lots of gratuitous images of peonies.

Friday, 3 June 2011

The Counting of Years

One of the fun things about blogging is, like The Queen, one can celebrate two birthdays a year. Blog Birthday and Real Rirthday.
Today is Real Birthday.

'But what did the counting of years mean if he felt himself young in his soul, as he had been twenty years ago? Was it not youth, the feeling he experienced now, when, coming out to the edge of the wood again from the other side, he saw in the bright light of the sun's slanting rays Varenka's graceful figure, in a yellow dress and with her basket , walking with a light step past the trunk of an old birch...' Leo Tolstoy Anna Karenina

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Paris In July

Tamara and Karen are organising Paris in July once more. Today's post is in response to this post .
Here's the link to last year on Flowers and Stripes
This year I shall be reading Collette Ripening Seed, picked up in a charity shop hoping Paris in July would happen again.
I may re read That Mad Ache by Francoise Sagan as I so loved it last year.
Having discovered Julia Childs this year maybe a cook from her book, and it feels along time since my taste buds tingled with a Laduree macarons so I may just have to...