The Girl in the Red Coat

Archive for May 2010

We’re enjoying truly gorgeous weather here in London at the moment…well, I use the word ‘we’ in the loosest possible terms because I am unfortunately sitting at my desk indoors most of the day, surrounded by note cards, textbooks and pens, and staring longingly out at the sunshine. I do occasionally manage to escape into the back garden with a cool drink and my sunglasses though – a girl needs a break sometimes!

I love our garden, it’s looking beautiful at the moment, is so peaceful during the week and if I sit still long enough, there are a few birds that feel quite at home hopping about on the lawn and splashing around in the bird bath. They’re very camera shy…but I’m determined to catch them on film one day!


Home Comforts

Posted on: May 16, 2010

Some of you reading this will know that recently, as a distraction from studying, I’ve taken to  planning my future  flat/cottage by the sea! It’s been suggested that I’m just being cruel to myself by  doing this because I am in no way  close to achieving this dream any time soon with the way this  course is eating up my savings and forcing me to sign  up for some rather terrifying loans. But I don’t  see that escapism is bad at all and besides, a little bit of imagination  and wistful planning now can  only help me in the future when I’m moving into and decorating a place that’s entirely  my own!

What would your dream place be like?

As much as I admire the sleek, modern, minimalist look I know that’s definitely not me and it would  take a lot to convince me otherwise. My cottage will be chic in its own cosy, vintage way – old china  tea cups in a dresser in the kitchen, an aga, a pantry, open fireplaces, luxurious double beds  with  heaps of cushions and colourful blankets. Yeah so money’s no object in these dreams, but a girl  can  dream right?!

The kitchen should be a large, light-filled room with  plenty of space for the family to sit around and  chat while sniffing the luscious cooking aromas wafting from the oven. There will be window seats to curl up and read in or simply gaze outside and dream, an attic room for its happy occupant to feel deliciously warm and cosy when lying in bed and listening to the rain pouring down outside and a wee garden full of flowers, fruit trees and stony winding paths leading to hidden nooks…

The daydreams also include the perfect mister to snuggle up with (and take the dogs out for a walk when it’s just too cold and miserable to leave the warmth of the house!) but alas he doesn’t fall into such easy categories as planning the rooms of a house and I don’t have an exact picture of him in my head just yet! Although that also allows one to dream a little…

Here are a couple of other images that have excited my imagination recently:

[Please note, none of these images are mine –  click the picture to be taken to the lucky owner  of the room in question!]

So as I mentioned in my previous post, S and I wrote ’30 things before 30′ lists at the weekend detailing 30 of the things we’d like to do before turning the big 3 – 0. I still have a few years to go considering the fact that I’m only turning 28 (that’s probably the last time you’ll hear me using the word ‘only’ in that context!) this year but some of my choices are vaguer, or more difficult to immediately carry out, than others and so I think the extra time is justified. Besides I am also trying to get a law degree, training contract and make my way along the route to qualifying as a solicitor at the same time so I think there should be no room for complaints!

Without further ado, this is my list! (You can look forward to the entries detailing my adventures along the way!)

My 30 things:

  1. Get an adrenalin rush.
  2. Take dance lessons.
  3. Visit family in Galway.
  4. Be more creative (I’d like to make a scrapbook of my 20s…)
  5. Go vegetarian for a month.
  6. Grow my hair.
  7. Have a vegetable patch.
  8. Be more tolerant in new relationships.
  9. Read a novel in French.
  10. Knit a scarf from scratch.
  11. Go for afternoon tea in Fortnum and Mason.
  12. Choose and go on a London walking tour.
  13. Learn how to make houmous from scratch.
  14. Go to the Porchester Spa.
  15. Watch ‘La Haine’.
  16. Write a letter to my 16 year old self.
  17. Print photos of friends and arrange in frames.
  18. See a new West End show.
  19. Write more letters/postcards to friends.
  20. See my god daughter more regularly.
  21. Cook a full Nigella Lawson meal (starter, main, dessert).
  22. Write a will.
  23. Learn basic sign language.
  24. Organise a schedule for backing-up my data.
  25. Make time to relax and pamper regularly.
  26. Take time for some yoga.
  27. Visit Stratford upon Avon.
  28. Plan a budget, savings etc.
  29. Ride a horse.
  30. Read ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and ‘Alice Through the Looking-Glass’.

Feel free to comment with any ideas for other things you think I should try. With just over 2 years I’m sure I can squeeze in a few more. Failing that, they could be added to the beginning of a 40 before 40 list…?!

I was up in the Lake District staying with a friend over the weekend, lucky enough to have gorgeous weather which was a perfect escape from studying and grim London. I’m back refreshed and ready to kick some revision butt over the next month, despite my freshly-cleansed lungs almost giving out after one breath of smoky air when the train doors opened at London Euston this evening.

S and I created ’30 things before 30′ lists, detailing (strangely enough!) 30 of the things we’d like to achieve before turning 30! I still have just over 2 years but should probably get started on some of them and this’ll be the perfect place to keep track of them! Will put my list up soon and let the adventure begin! (.^_^)v

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♥ spring ♥

Posted on: May 3, 2010

Only a quick post, but these daffodils looked so gorgeous sunning themselves on the kitchen table in the evening light that I had to snap a few pictures!

sushi saturday

Posted on: May 1, 2010

This last week has been nightmarishly busy – my final piece of coursework was due on Wednesday and I still had my normal tutorial work to prepare for around it. I’ve been trying to be good with this course and not leave important assessments to the very last minute, but I also need the adrenalin in order to get through the work! I didn’t have a lot of the important writing to finish at the beginning of the week, just the checking-through to make sure it all flows logically but it’s surprising how long the contents and bibliography take to do in addition to this! Anyways, I managed to get it done, handed in AND attended all my usual sessions with the work read and prepared for.

When Friday afternoon came round though, I was tired, grouchy and just fit for bed – excellent company as you can probably imagine! One of my friends invited me over for a girls’ night-in which I had to turn down, for everyone’s sanity, and so we decided to go out for sushi and a movie today instead.

Having lived in Japan for four years, Japanese food has become like medicine to me…I need it on a fairly  regular basis! It’s not a bad thing, I guess, there are of course worse habits but it can be an expensive one  when living in London! I’m always on the look-out for places with that authentic, or as-close-to authentic,  taste as possible and I have a few favourite haunts. In fact, most of my favourite things to do in the city  definitely revolve around food…and cafés. Anywhere I can curl up with a good book and while away a few  hours or meet up with some close friends and be amazed at how quickly the time passes surrounded by delicious aromas and excellent conversation.

In fact, there’s a new café I want to visit at some point soon, I just need to find someone to drag to Hampstead with me…

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Welcome to the blogging adventures of a 20-something London girl with a love of travelling, music and laughing with friends. Feel free to join me on my adventures! (.^_^)v

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