There is never enough time to do everything you want to do on a weekend…like make a trip to IKEA for the one single print frame you need but don’t want to pay £9 to have delivered, or make Oatmeal Raisin cookies or watch the entirety of the second series of the West Wing * Speaking of the West Wing, Big Block of Cheese Day is now a REAL thing oh em gee *
I did, however, get to have dinner with my sister and bro-in-law to be (who carted me all the way to Tayyabs from Dishoom because my shoes were rubbing holes in my toes – what a star) and their amazeballs London-based friends * Finally bought a proper waterproof coat to start spending more time in the countryside again without getting drenched * Finally saw August: Osage County. Far more brutal than the trailer suggests and also oh, my God Meryl Streep HOW DO YOU DO IT * Dropped into Brunswick House Cafe for a couple of Friday night drinks: check out these lush lights:
Also: caught up with Kait over tea * Made a bucket of bolognese sauce/lasagne * got stuck into the Rosie Project…disappointingly not loving it the way I thought I would so far, but excellent narrator * cleaned the flat (snore) * did some window shopping (this, this and this, yes please) * painted my nails * promptly smudged my nails * and thought about picking the guitar up and trying to make a noise on it again. And then didn’t.
One thing I love ‘sketching’ (I say “sketching”, because it’s not much more than chicken scrawls, but I kind of like it) in my Moleskines are What I Wore Today posts… less because I think I’m wearing something awesome, more because it’s really fun to read back through old notebooks and see these splotchy approximations of what I looked like on that day, matched with a few random thoughts. I also do love thinking about upcoming seasons…the things I’ll do, wear, eat. Oh, the places you’ll go…etc etc. It’s a nice way to pass a seemingly endless commute, or to take my eyes away from a screen for a few minutes at lunch time. And I don’t need an excuse to daydream a little.
Well, Sean got me a beautiful Pencil this Christmas, to go with the Paper app, so I’ve been trying to get the hang of it…the nib is a lot more malleable than I thought it would be and the tools inside the app don’t allow for manual toggling of width, but it has total palm rejection, which makes it easy to approximate a natural sketching position for me. It’s going to take me a while to get anywhere near proficient, but I love it a lot. I’m guessing my Moleskine is going to become a little more utilitarian notes and a little less WIWT soon, because it’s actually a bit addicting…
Advice I am forever trying to follow well. This weekend I cleared out a ton of clutter from the bedroom and took two giant bags of books and two more bin bags full of old clothes to the charity shop…which feels a little bit like, here – YOU throw them away, but hopefully there’s something that can be done with them. To be honest, even though I’ve moved around a few baskets of things, there somehow still doesn’t feel like any more space in the bedroom…the job continues. Also picked up a couple of nice things for the flat – just small stuff like a vase and some new tablemats, but things I felt like have been missing a while. Nearly two years we’ve been in this space and hardly decorated at all, given that the flat was nicely furnished when we moved in. We don’t plan on moving any time soon, so I’ve finally thought it’s time for some ‘us’ additions.
My weekday thing for a better tomorrow is waking up at 6.30. Yes, actually. I know. Let’s see how long that lasts…
Saturday mornings: the best day of the week. Sometimes it’s actually really nice to get up early on a Saturday and savour the time to do whatever you like. Coffee on. August: Osage County soundtrack playing. Loaf in oven. Yes - really.
An ugly-beautiful-lacking-in-floured-top-still-tasty-for-a-first-attempt-in-years loaf. I don’t think I kneaded it long enough, despite definitely doing it for more than ten minutes because I was kneading while watching an episode of Episodes and completely forgot to clock watch. Oh well. It tastes pretty great; I’m having trouble not eating it all right now.
There’s a zillion things left to do on my list still before I get to go meet an old friend for dinner who’s in town for the weekend…including taking a ton of clothes that have been sat in our tiny flat for ages to the charity shop. It’s an amazing feeling to lighten the load a little. Remember that 2014 goal? Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. Well, I’ve been busy getting on that…
Starting with a jar of my favourite flowers.
Next: a pair of cool prints for the living room to brighten up the wall a little. Anyone got any good ones they can point me in the way of? I better get pinning some good things…
It’s the middle of January: pay day is forever away, and most people’s Resolutions lie in tatters behind them * I have a cough so chesty that it hardly matters that I can’t exercise, because my abs are going to be rock solid by the end of this cold anyway and it’s probably a close-run thing as to who wishes I would stop coughing most: me or my flatmate *There’s snow forecasted for the coming week but this song has me dreaming of sunny beaches and basketball courts and, well, happy. Besides that I have some serious hen planning to do (for the sister), just finished Labyrinth by Kate Mosse, hooked on the opening few pages of Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life, and have some over-ripe bananas that would perfectly suit being made into these banana bread granola bars.The First Mess is an absolute treasure trove of gluten free and vegan recipes. So do yourself a favour: ditch the ‘diet’ and just…add a few more veggies, glasses of water and good things into your life. Good times.
Slightly late ‘Monday’ reminder – relevant to January and everything I try to cram into my life that I so desperately want to do/try/be but forget that there are finite resources of time, energy and money (sob). In other news, we had some very ad-hoc engagement drinks last night – hastily arranged at the airport when we thought Sean had to leave on Wed – and basking in that lovely warm glow this morning of having wonderful people for friends. Also! Stay of execution: Sean doesn’t have to go back to Africa until Saturday! YAY!
* Run another 3 10k races (including York and London)
* See more theatre from the bigger players alongside reviewing off-West End – I haven’t been to the Old/Young Vic or the National in forever
* Visit the friends around the UK who I miss and never really get to see. This is the year of many domestic trips…starting with Belfast in January!
* live by the motto “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful”…this year my life will be my ‘house’, and clutter will be scaled back. Only spending money on things that are worth it, not frittering it away
*And also… Just Do It. Book those theatre tickets you want, even if that’s £40 you won’t see until 6 months later when the show is. Say yes to random nights out. Give 100% concentration when you should do, so you work harder but not longer. Take ‘you’ time to catch up with your thoughts. Also, don’t overthink it. And just go for that run – you’ll never regret it.
Happy new year all! Cannot wait to see what this one brings!
So in 2013 I said I would:
* Visit 3 places I’d never been before… check Seville
* Knit something that wasn’t a scarf… sort of check
(baby steps on this one, I guess)
* Master Pastry … hmm
I’m much more confident making it now I’ve reminded myself how easy it is and simply not to panic when it comes to bringing it together and not overworking it…but when I saw there’s a zillion blocks of butter in breakfast pastry, I just couldn’t bring myself to make it!
The other goals were: * Run the London 10K (check!) * Read more Non-fiction (half check!) * Ride my board more (quarter check…) * Improve my photography (check! I hope, anyway) and * Keep blogging… definitely CHECK. Also in 2013 I took on new, challenging clients, took an opportunity that may lead to something potentially amazing in 2014 and came to realise something towards the end of the year that put me in a much more balanced and happy place work-wise. Oh and, my favourite person proposed, so now I have a legit reason to spend time on Pinterest…