Thursday 31 October 2013

You stood in the bell tower, but now you're gone

Where better to go for Hallowe'en than a Victorian graveyard as the late afternoon sun fades to dusk?

Littlest wanted to dress up - those are sequined devil's horns, in case you are wondering...

Sheffield's General Cemetery has featured on my blog before (here) but I never get tired of visiting, it's a beautiful and atmospheric place.

The pink chalk scrawl behind Littlest reads; Religion is a fairy tale for frightened children.

My two favourite ladies.

I'm short of words tonight.

I've just found out that an old friend is very ill in hospital. I feel a bit shell-shocked, and very worried.

Silk blouse, suede waistcoat and bangles - charity shopped
1970s velvet maxi skirt - gift from Sarah
Boots - Ebay
Feather headband - gift from Vix

And for the first time in my life,
I keep the lights on,
To ease my soul. 

Hope you all had a deliciously spooky Hallowe'en.

I'm off for blogger meet-up fun tomorrow in Nottingham - can't wait!

See you soon.


Tuesday 29 October 2013

'Til Somebody Loves You

The kids have their half term holiday this week, which means I do too!

Oh it has been good to have no particular schedule, and a lovely lie-in or several.

Mind you, today was designated the day of the Big Clear Up.

My mum and sister are visiting tomorrow.

I only ever get the urge to tidy up when visitors are due, it makes me see the mess with fresh and frankly appalled eyes...

Denim blazer - gift from Fiona
Top, hat, belt, bangles and necklace - charity shopped
1970s maxi skirt - flea market
Boots - Ebay
Tapestry tote bag - made it myself

There are always cats around when I take my photos. Charlie was chasing leaves and playing with his buddy from next door, Caspar. Jess (or The Queen, as she is known in this house) was less than impressed with the young upstart.

The dreadful storms which hit other parts of the country very hard didn't have much impact here, thank goodness.

Nail varnish - a gift from Emma Kate

I'll be taking my hat along to Judith's next Hat Attack  on November 1st.

And I'm meeting up with some delicious blogger friends on Friday too, I'm very excited!

But before that, there's a day of family shenanigans tomorrow,  the Ladies Purse will be storming to victory in the local pub quiz (yeah, right... Serial Losers, we should be called), and there is the small matter of Hallowe'en to consider...

Here's Eldest before she went out for a spooky walk in Derbyshire with the Scouts this evening.

Zombie School Girl - she raided my wig and beret collection, and perfected the dead-eyed look rather well, I thought.

And a propos of absolutely nothing - the kids have been playing this song constantly, and it's really rather good.
Just shows that sometimes TV talent shows turn up someone with some, err, talent.


Friday 25 October 2013

Doesn't take much to make me happy

There have been all sorts of little things which have made me smile this week.

Sunshine after the rain, for one.

And this beauty, called Samantha, picked up in a charity shop for a fiver.

The painting is signed Lambert - I'm looking to you for information, Tania!

1960s amber glassware, which matches my genie bottle rather nicely.

Yes, Wii games and dust and cat paw prints on the mantlepiece. 
See what I mean about amateur?

The local charity shop where I found both painting and vase had a lot of vintage glassware on display.

I'm guessing it was probably one person's collection.
Is it sad that it was all being flogged off for £1-3 a piece, or good that lots of people get a chance to enjoy it now, and the hospice charity benefits? A bit of both, I suppose.

Another customer and I oohed and ahhed over which pieces to choose, while the women at the till fretted over using up all their bubble wrap on our purchases. (Newspaper would have done the job equally well...)

This perfectly-fitting dress has made me happy, a gift from the divine Helga. Have you seen her flashing her pantaloons as a guest frockster over at Kylie's?

What else has tickled me?

Eldest joining the Dance Club at school, and telling me that they can't perform their routine to Jason Derulo's Talk Dirty at the Christmas concert because the lyrics include the word penis. There may be some other lyrical content which is a little adult for 11 year olds too...  
My mate Jo losing out to an elderly lady in the Battle of the Granny Chic at a vintage charity sale yesterday. They both wanted the same 1960s top; the octogenarian won. We laughed all morning about that. 
 After months of being blanked by the Chair of our PTA (she hates me!) which has made it impossible for me to remain in the group, there has been a regime change, and I can return. That feels better. Christmas Fair? Game on!

Last Saturday, when Littlest and I were on the bus coming home from town, a toothless man radiating beer fumes chatted to us. We answered politely, until he asked about my husband.     
I'm not married, I said. Foolishly. 
 Toothless Drunk Man's eyes lit up. I corrected my error, and said I have a partner.
  Toothless Drunk wanted to know why we weren't married, and we seemed set for an unwelcome discussion about marriage, and my availability. Luckily, he had to get off the bus before us.
When he had gone, Littlest gave me a piercing look, and said he liked you.
Well, he was a bit drunk, I replied.
She shrugged, then said he wanted you.
For once, I was speechless.

Someone has found my blog by using the search term meet n fuck. 
I hope it wasn't Toothless Drunk Man.

1970s Dagmar maxi dress - gift from Helga
Denim jacket and bangles - charity shopped
Apple pendant and brooch - flea markets
1980s boots - Second to None

Spending very little money to get interesting, quirky old stuff - that always makes me feel cheerful.

Clockwise top left to right;
1950s preserve pot
1950s giraffe cocktail stirrers
1930s Bakelite domed trinket box (stall holder suggested it was for powder and a puff)
1960-70s stainless steel and abalone shell bangle
Victorian dried flower brooch
Tiny glass salt shaker (I presume)

Prices - 50p-£3.

And that fabric with the funky print you can see in the background? A 1960s dress for a fiver. Yippee!

So, yes, I am pretty easy to please.

Dinner with the girls round at Karen's later, and next week is half term.
I'm pretty pleased about that too.

Have a splendid weekend, everyone!


Tuesday 22 October 2013

Every picture tells a story

This season's must-have accessory? 

Why, an umbrella, of course.

Oh how it has rained. 

Thank goodness for my lovely 1950s umbrella, bought from Chesterfield flea market. For a slender little thing, it has turned out to be surprisingly sturdy.

There's that waistcoat again, the price-per-wear must be mere pennies by now...

Umbrella and cape - flea market
1970s pencil skirt, blouse, suede waistcoat, beret, tights and bangles - charity shopped
Shoes - jumble sale 
Vinyl/tapestry bag - gift from dearest Vix
Flower brooch - retail (sale) 

Dress, waistcoat, 1950s tweed jacket and bangles - charity shopped
Boots - retail (old)
Bag - jumble sale
Beads - gift from Brodie

I do struggle with them. Mine are so hit and miss, and I have no idea why they sometimes work and sometimes don't. 

I am in awe of bloggers who post amazing photographs, and I do wish mine were a little better, but I am too bone idle to learn to use my camera properly - it's automatic or nothing for me, I'm afraid. And if the light conditions are dodgy, then the photos are too.

An awful lot of my photos look like this.
(Most get deleted immediately.)

Blurry, eyes closed, obscured by foliage, distracted, caught mid-stomp with my neighbour's washing on show...

Britain's Next Crap Model, that's me.

And then there was the small matter of the collapsing tripod...

Professional blogger? Not even close.
  I'm strictly amateur, and that's the way I like it. This isn't a job, it's a hobby; it's like meeting up with my pals and having a chat and a catch-up.

So - there are inexpert photos, pets, kids, mess.

There is swearing and foolishness, and there are some opinions, though these are generally unrelated to this season's trends or how to wear... guidance.  There's the odd rant (like this), occasional seriousness, regular cheap-skatery and acting the fool, and maybe a laugh or two.

There are no ads, no sponsorship, I'm not promoting anything, I don't monetise (whatever the hell that means...)
 I'm not splashing my face all over a million and one link-ups, several pics at a time.
I'm not asking you to vote for me in blogger competitions, there are no reviews which begin When the lovely people at blah blah blah got in touch to give me a freebie, I said gimme gimme gimme.


I'm just singing and dancing in the rain for the sheer fun of it, and it is indeed a glorious feeling.

The relief of it - being highly unprofessional, imperfect, and not caring!

Hope everyone is having a good week so far, see you soon.


Sunday 20 October 2013


Thank you for your touching and heartfelt responses to my last post.

I get a bit nervous about posting serious stuff, but sometimes I feel the need, and I appreciate you listening/reading.

This weekend hasn't been remotely serious!

It's been food, foraging, frivolity and frockage all the way.
Although you wouldn't know it from these faces...


We were waiting at the bus stop to go out for tapas on Friday night.

To be fair, I told them not to smile. I was taking album cover shots. You know, for when they form a group and make a fortune, and keep their poor old mother in the manner to which she is unaccustomed.

(Eldest is dancing in the background, in case you are wondering what on earth she's doing.)

A mum's best accessory is her boy...

...unless it's one of her girls.
Monkey Boy.

The lighting in the tapas restaurant was so dim, all the pics were fuzzy.
Here's Eldest looking miffed that she was given a children's menu...
She was somewhat mollified by the sharing platter of desserts.
Littlest and I pottered into town.
The Peace Gardens.

The Winter Gardens, Town Hall, and a funky car park!
Littlest is pattern mixing with the best of them. 
Clothing - all hand-me-downs
El Naturalista ankle boots - samples, bought from a market stall for £15 (their kids' boots retail for over £90)
We browsed the vintage flea market. 

The groovy 1970s children's anoraks really took me back, and I wonder how an American Girl Scout uniform made its way to Sheffield?

There was plenty to catch the eye, but I only bought this...

...just to keep the doctor away, you understand, it was a purely medicinal purchase.

We stopped off for refreshments.

Millionaire's Shortbread? But where's the millionaire?

1970s angel sleeve dress - Ebay
Denim jacket and bangles - charity shopped
Necklace and hair flower - retail (sale)
1980s boots - Second to None, Walsall
1950s tapestry bag - vintage shop, Birmingham

Linking up with NYC-bound Patti and the assembled lovelies for Visible Monday.

Hope your weekend has been a good one!