Tuesday, 7 February 2023

Desperately Seeking A Sailor (Top)

Ah the Breton Top or to give it the correct name, The Mariniere.
I can't tell you when my love affair with the hunble striped top began but as you can see from the photograph below, the closest I came to finding the perefect one for me was back in the late 1980s.
You can barely see the stripes on the top below in my photo with Ollie the dog but this was the closest I came to finding the One.
It was a a heavy knit and I bought it from the back pages of a Sunday newspaper.
I wore it with everything including these green short dungarees!
But  I have no idea what happened to it.
I only know I have never come close to my Mariniere until this week when I fell in love all over again.
But why is this simple striped top such a fashion icon?
I could give you  my regurgitated account but there is a better history here.

As you can see here, my love of stripes was not limited to navy blue, this was a lovely green and I looked like an advert for a striped mint that was peopular in the 1980s when this photo was taken.

I have searched high and low for a replacement Breton and came close

I came close here

And here 

But I never found the weight and style I loved until last week when I found this Uniqlo one and ordered it straight away.
It is not often I buy new clothes now but I will cherish this one for as long as it lasts.

Now I prefer to wear it with faux leather leggings but who knows where this love affair will lead.
I am off to Gran Canaria for a little while.
See you on the other side.

Friday, 16 December 2022

Plaid Friday


According to the news, today is Mad Friday.

But I have decided for me it's going to be Plaid Friday.

I love this red Zara dress that I picked up from Vinted last year.

I adore the pattern, the colour and crucially, the fact that you can fit four layers underneath too.

It was another chilly start this morning but I was out and about meeting up with friends after finishing teaching for the year yesterday.

First, I met my friend Pauline for a chat before driving off to my alma mater, Edge Hill University.
My friend Lisa works there now and we met up for a coffee on the campus which is a beautiful setting especially on a frosty morning.
I first visited Edge Hill University in 1973 when my mum's cousin was studying teaching there.
In 2010 I enrolled as a student for a year when I studied for my own teaching certificate - a PGCE English.
While I hated most of my teaching placements, I loved being on campus.
I thoroughly enjoyed the visit today.
It was a lovely atmosphere as it was the students' last day before the Christmas break.
I remember saying to a friend once that what I loved about working in education was the rhythms of the year.
She rather cynically replied 'you just love the holidays.'

After a coffee and catch up we strolled around the campus.
I can't believe it is 11 years since I was a student here.
I hope it's not too long until I return again.

Back home now and I am going to curl up on the sofa with a couple of dogs, a hot vimto and my (sort of) campus  based novel, Ghosted.

Have a lovely weekend.

Boots - New Look
Dress - Zara via Vinted

Wednesday, 26 October 2022

Rainbows, Rivers and Light

A half family day out with two of my four children, my husband, daughter in law, mum and my two grandchildren, Heidi and Mason.
It was half-term and we decided to visit Speke Hall before meeting up with Briony's husband in Liverpool later.


It was very wet although there was a beautiful rainbow to enjoy.

Not that the weather stopped Mason and Heidi enjoying the entertainment in the Great Hall.

I couldn't resist snapping this shot of my husband, Paul, who happened to do his musing just below the antlers.

We arrived in Liverpool city centre about 5pm and got the last table at Duke Street market where we all enjoyed our favourite foods.

We left a long queue snaking outside Duke Street Market and headed towards the waterfront for the 2km light show, The River of Light - a series of light inspired installations.

The children loved it and judging by the crowds so did half of Liverpool. It was heaving.

It was such a lovely thing to do in the autumn evening.

Not very often you get free family entertainment in this day and age but it was wonderful.

Heidi couldn't get enough of the light show.

We were all home by 9pm filled up with good food and more happy memories.

Tuesday, 11 October 2022

A Walk on the Wildside


When I was 18 I briefly went out with a DJ on our local radio station, Radio Piccadilly in Manchester.

He had gone to the same sixth form college as me. 

I was a first year and he was a third year and we met in a drama production.

Every morning when he was covering the early morning show he would play Walk on the Wild Side for me.

That was in 1984 and I have loved walking on the wild side ever since.

Especially if that wild side has a coastal view.

As part of our plan to eventually walk the rugged Anglesey Coastal Path my husband, myself and our two close friends Denise and Kev decamped to Newborough for three nights to cover yet another section.

Our previous efforts were documented here.

Day One started at Newborough beach and we walked along the sands to the ruins of the memorial to the Welsh equivalent of St Valentine - St Dwynwen.

St Dwynwen is the patron saint of lovers and lived in the 5th century, her day is celebrated on January 25th.

You can find out more about her here.

Day Two and Liverpool were playing so the boys watched the game in Beaumaris while Denise and I had a mooch around the shops and a quanit little garden centre.

After lunch we walked from the village with the longest name in Wales 

( shortened to Llanfair PG) which took in both of the Menai Bridges.

Along the way we came across Church Island and a gorgeous little church that dates back to the fifteenth century.

Day Three and by far the hottest day where we walked along South Stack near Holyhead and saw a group of dolphins swimming close to the shore.

Day Four and our final day was a few miles along the coast from Aberffraw.

It is the most beautiful coastal path to walk and I am determined not to rush.

I want to savour every inch.

Sadly, the relationship with the DJ didn't last long but my love of walking on the wild side has stayed with me forever.

Thursday, 18 August 2022

Nice Day For A White Wedding


After two years of planning my beautiful Briony finally became a bride.

It was a wonderful wedding at Merrydale Manor in Knutsford.

I was a very proud mum.

The theme was Ivory and Gold and my dress was made by Liverpool designer Mark Melia.
Although I did find my shoes on VInted!

While the bride and groom took centre stage, Mason was star of the show and so good.

A fabulous day was had by all and it was so lovely to see my four children together.

My sons were groomsmen and my grandaughter, daughter in law and son's girlfriend were bridesmaids.

Thank you to the amazing Stacey Oliver for the professional photographs.

Monday, 27 June 2022

Confessions of a Hen Do: The Final Part

The cases are packed, the taxis are ready and after retrieving Linda's Chanel sungasses from the bottom of the pool the Hen Do is finally over.

But not for me, my daughter and her mother in law to be as we meet up with Jordan, (her husband to be), the baby and her father in law to be.

Jordan's family have an apartment in nearby San Pedro and I have booked into a hotel nearby.

My morning starts with a swim and book by the pool.

After brunch in the port we catch a boat to Marbella Old Town and enjoy a few drinks in this beautiful old square and dinner by the beach.

The next day we visit a Beach Club and Mason enjoys a swim in the pool.

And all too soon it's over.

I have loved finally getting abroad for the first time in two and a half years and I have loved spending time with my daughter and her friends.

I think this will probably be my first and only Hen Holiday but what a Holiday it was.

Now its time to get ready for the wedding.

Confessions of a Hen Do; Part Four in which we get an indecent proposal


The final day of our Hen Do and it's a full day to appreciate this beautiful villa,.

The theme is White and Gold.

The Hens are in white and the bride to be in gold.

I went for my old Zara dress but almost everyone else was in beachwear.

Today its a real treat as two chefs arrive with pots, pans, plates and food to prepare a feast while the Butler in the Buff creates cocktails for us and a DJ plays some tunes.

After the food and drink there are party games organised by the matron of honour, my daughter in law, Sophie.

I couldn't quite get the hang of the balloon game.

It all ended with two teams competing to make a wedding dress with toilet rolls.

And the indecent proposal?

My daughter in law and my son Joe's girlfriend, Poppy, were seeing the butler out when he uttered the immortal words:

'Fancy a quickie?'

Luckily they didn't!

At least I hope not.

Desperately Seeking A Sailor (Top)

Ah the Breton Top or to give it the correct name, The Mariniere. I can't tell you when my love affair with the hunble striped top began ...