Saturday, November 30, 2019

What I Wore October 19th

For Lincoln Zine Fest I put on this skirt, which I recently altered from a dress, and this t-shirt we made on camp, which I've decided to call my bike punk t-shirt.

The dress was one of my favourites, I love the skirt part and it has pockets and always made me feel so fancy. But the top was too short for me - if I wore it so that it came high enough up on my cleavage, the skirt elastic was pulled right up under my boobs which made the whole dress sit funny. If I pulled the elastic on to my waist, my boobs were exposed by the top part going too low. It was driving me mad. So I decided to just cut the top off. It's easy to do - I did it with another Scarlett & Jo dress fairly recently too and have liked wearing it as a skirt.

This is perfect now it's just a skirt. It has a lining and some netting, to make it stick out a bit. It's fancy but fun. I love it!

The t-shirt was one my mum did when we were camping because she was in charge of the bleach. I've worn it before, I love the pattern on it and felt the two items looked good together. I got some lovely compliments on the day about both the skirt at the top, so I think I was right!

I also put on my grey cardigan for travelling and for walking round town as it had dropped quite cold.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Lincoln Zine Fest 2019

To start off with, I have managed to get my Etsy store updated with all my zines in it. If you would like to buy any, this is my store.

October was time for Lincoln Zine Fest again! We went the first two years but were on holiday last year and couldn't make it, so I was glad we could go this year. We set off early, bought snacks, and got to Lincoln just after 10pm. It was held this year in an arts space called Mansions of the Future. The room was small but Lou had managed to fit in loads of zinesters, and there were loads of visitors throughout the day.

We sold quite a few zines and traded a few too. I sat cross stitching for most of the day. Lee went round to New Look to take a parcel back for me, and brought lunch back. I was chatting to Bettie and Jen and Miriam and Janet and Lou, among some others. We packed up at 4pm and said bye to everyone.

Lee and I went into the centre to go to Flying Tiger, where I bought many fun things including a rainbow tote bag. We popped into Waterstones, where I had a gift card to spend, but I ended up only buying one book (very unlike me!). Then we went round to the waterfront where there's a bunch of restaurants. I'd asked Lou where was best to eat and she'd mentioned here. She said there was a Wagamama so we went in there. We got in just before hordes of people came in, meaning we got seated pretty quickly.

Lee decided to have chicken skewers and then chilli chicken ramen. Since I went vegetarian he rarely eats chicken. He often has tuna for lunch and sometimes if we have different things for tea he'll buy himself a chicken ready meal, but by and large he eats vegetarian like I do. So often when we go out he likes to have chicken.

I got bang bang cauliflower which I've had before and which is really spicy and sticky cauliflower, I love it. I went for the avant gard'n main dish which is teriyaki seitan with brown rice, stir fried greens, stir fried mushrooms, edamame beans, a vegan "egg", and salad. I liked it - the seitan was really good and sticky, and the rice was great - but it wasn't the best dish I've ever had there and I wouldn't get it again. We also ordered some vegetarian steamed buns which had aubergine and mushroom and were really nice.

After we'd eaten we set off home and got back around 8pm, so we had a bit of time then to chill out before an early night!

My stall at the zine fest. I was only selling my own zines this time, except for the Buffy one that Cath and Laura wrote

This seal was on a huge heavy fire door going into a pantry, isn't it fabulous?

Close up of my zines

Lee down by the waterfront

I took this of us but managed to get my finger in it, whoops

My food. The egg was a strange texture, like a white foam almost - like one of those shower jellies from Lush!

Bang bang cauliflower

And the steamed buns!

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

A Crochet Heart for Owen

My friend Stacey had a baby back in June and I was considering what to make as a gift for him. I tie dyed some sleepsuits for him actually when we were tie dyeing in August, but I wanted to make something else. I wasn't sure what, but then in the course of tidying up, I came across this polystyrene heart that I had bought ages ago to make some kind of decoration with. I thought it would be perfect for a baby.

I crocheted a long strip to go round it, in a rainbow of colours. (Owen is Stacey's rainbow baby). I had all the yarn already on hand, I just picked out the brightest colours. I did seven rows of each colour I think, using the heart as a guide for width too. I doubled up on the lilac so that I could us that at the top of the heart, and then reversed the colours. The crocheting took no time at all. I didn't sew in the ends because I knew I could just hide them when I sewed the strip to the heart.

I did that with a length of red yarn and a darning needle. I tried to be neat, but went off course a little bit as you can see. But, it looks perfect from the front. Crochet is very forgiving and stretched easily into shape.

I found some cream aida for the cross stitch and pulled out black thread and red, orange, and yellow threads, again stuff that I already had on hand. I wasn't sure which font to use for Owen's name, so I googled a lot. I finally went with this pattern, which is called Beloved, which I thought was lovely. The cross stitching didn't take very long either and I'm pleased with it.

I sewed the cross stitch on to the heart using little cross stitches in the corners, with lilac thread. It's delicate but I thought it looked good. I'm really pleased with it in general!

Stacey loved it and says it's going in Owen's bedroom when he moves into it. His first name is one they both liked, David is after his dad, and Branwell is after Branwell Bronte as Stacey and Dave got engaged and married in Haworth. Isn't it a lovely name?

I like the heart, and I'm glad Stacey does too! I hope Owen does also as he grows up.

The long strip. I was making this at craft club

Later that day when I'd done the whole strip

During sewing on, I tried really hard to balance the colours right and I think I managed it. I sewed the two red ends together so it looked like a continuous strip

See, once it's done you can barely see the join

My sewing isn't bad, it went a bit off on the left there but is basically fine!

Once I had finished the cross stitch. I cut the pieces down to size a little bit before I put them on the heart

And finally, once I had sewed them on! Isn't it cute? I'm impressed with myself

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Lunch Out with Chloe

In the middle of October I went to Zizzi in Birstall to meet Chloe. We often meet up for lunch and seem ot take it in turns to go closer to her or closer to me. It was my turn to go to her and she suggested Zizzi near Ikea. I haven't been to Zizzi in ages and I've seen that they have loads of vegetarian and vegan options on the menu, so I agreed and was looking forward to it.

I set off on the motorway and there was a crash, so I got off Junction 40 near Dewsbury and decided to make my way over the back roads. It took a bit of doing because I couldn't quite remember how to get there. I think I did it on instinct although I did also ring my mum for reassurance! It's my stepdad's part of the world and she had me on speakerphone so they were both really helpful in getting me on the right road. Do you ever drive completely on instinct, where you know where you're going when you get there, but you utterly couldn't tell anyone else the way?

Anyway I got there, met Chloe, went inside. I had a glass of Prosecco because I just felt like celebrating it being Friday. I'd had a bit of a bad week and was really happy to be meeting a friend and especially Chloe because she's on the same wavelength for a lot of things. We both went for arincini to start with, which were really nice, and then the same pizza too, with goats cheese and caramelised onion and pine nuts on it. It was nice!

We had coffees afterwards and eventually said goodbye. It was lovely.

I was wearing this Scarlett & Jo dress, I got it from Lolly last year I think? I don't wear it often but I should because I love the colour. I put this grey cardigan on over the top because of the rain. I've been wearing it quite a lot and it's a really comfortable and cosy cardigan. It's so soft too!

My nails were Designated DJ by Essie. I bought a bunch of nail polishes recently on eBay and I loved this colour

Raspberry and mint cooler, it was really refreshing and I liked it

Me! Gleefully drinking prosecco!

Pea and mozzarella arancini

Pinoli pizza

My outfit! I love the length of this dress on me

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

What I Wore October 12th

As I said, Lee and I went out on October 12th to meet friends. I had had a quiet day putting a zine together, and only showered at 3pm just before we needed to leave. I wasn't sure what to where, but we've recently been going through my clothes - yet again - and I had remembered this dress.

It is such a bright pink, it's really fun. I usually wear it with a black cardigan but decided to put a black t-shirt on underneath instead. This actually worked out really well I think. It was quite warm in the restaurant so I was glad that I wasn't wearing a cardigan.

I love the palm print on the dress. I've had it about five years, if not longer. I don't wear it often and it's really more of a summer dress, but Lee likes the bright colour too so I put it on. I don't often wear swing dresses anymore and I find the shape quite weird on me. My body has changed shape over the last couple of years and I left the house feeling a bit self-conscious.

On our drive over I messaged a friend and said I was feeling a bit rubbish. That helped massively. Just someone hearing what I was saying and knew what I meant really helped. Plus I was sitting down most of the time in the restaurant anyway! It was fine, and I got over it, but I'm sharing this story to show that even though I wear some outlandish stuff and even though I always look like I don't care, sometimes I do feel self-conscious too.

The top and leggings are both from Simply Be, the dress is from Yours. Not sure where the belt is from, I got it from a clothes swap!

Monday, November 18, 2019

Evening Out with Friends

In the middle of October we had a teatime date with my friends Gillian and Amy and their husbands Tom and Mike and their babies, toddler Lily and baby Daisy, who has recently gained two teeth. We haven't all got together in ages and wanted to chat, so we decided to go to Lily's vegetarian restaurant in Ashton-under-Lyne.

It's the same place Amy and I went a couple of weeks before this, for the vegan afternoon tea. We were hoping to get that again, but they don't do it at the weekends, so we decided to go anyway and eat off the regular menu.

Lee and I arrived first and sat looking at the menu while waiting for the others. To be honest it was slightly overwhelming that I could eat absolutely anything on the menu - there was just too much choice! I didn't know whether to go for a dosa (which I love) or something else. I could have honestly eaten just every single one of the starters, too.

Everyone arrived and we ordered poppadums and pickle trays to start with, which were nice. Then I went for paneer pakora to start with, and aloo gobi for my mains, with onion rice (which Amy ordered and I thought, ooh that sounds good). Lee ordered some kind of battered potato to start with, then a potato dosa with masala chips. Lots of potato! Fortunately he likes potatoes.

The food came all at nearly the same time, which was good. There were so many of my paneer pakora, they were small and really good. Lily was trying everything so I shared some of that with her. My aloo gobi was really delicious too, with quite a bit of heat to it. I had a mango lassi which was SO good. Amy had a vegan one which I also tried - it was pretty good too. It tasted more like a mango smoothie.

It was such good food. We chatted for a while afterwards, deciding to not have any desserts. It was so nice to catch up with people that I don't see very often but have known so long (GIllian and Amy and I went to 6th form college together from 2000-2002). I did my thing of taking photos round the table - I'm lucky everyone humours me!

Afterwards Lee and I bought bhajis in the deli and then drove home. It was a really lovely evening and we're planning to do it again soon!

Paneer pakora with raita

Aloo gobi (potato and cauliflower curry)

Lee's dosa and curry

His potato starter thing

His chips - they were really yummy

Me and him

Me and Gillian

Gillian and the adorable Lily

Lily and her daddy

Tom and Mike

Mike and Amy (not seen, Daisy asleep on her mum's knee)

And finally, Amy and Lee, aren't they both gorgeous?!

Friday, November 15, 2019

Afternoon Out in Huddersfield

At the beginning of October I had arranged to meet up with Sam and Steph and Sarah in Huddersfield. We fancied lunch and a few drinks so chose the 6th to meet up. Sarah got the train from Sheffield and I got on it in my village, meaning we had chance for a chat before we arrived in Huddersfield.

We went to Siam Square, a Thai restaurant near the station. Sam's been before but the rest of us hadn't. They have a two course set menu which looked okay, but I think we all went for two courses off the main menu.

I had miang tofu, which was deep fried tofu with coconut and chilli and peanuts and a yummy sauce, it was really nice and I would eat it again. Then I went for vegetable cashew nut curry which was so good, it tasted a lot like satay which I've really missed since I stopped eating meat. I had it with jasmine rice. Everyone else seemed to like their food too, I would go again and take Lee.

After Siam Square we walked along to Zephyr, where we've been before. They do really nice quite obscure cocktails. But it was shut! We were outraged. Vox, a couple of doors along, doesn't open until later. So we went to the Cherry Tree, Huddersfield's Wetherspoons, instead.

It was quite busy but we found a table downstairs and had quite a few drinks. It was a really fun afternoon - we've already said we'll do it again soon!

I put some make up on for once, including the lipstick I wore for the vow renewal. It's by Lancome and I love the colour and the way it feels

Steph and Sam in the restaurant

Me and Sarah. Sarah and I met ten years ago at an Open University tutorial and I'm so glad the universe put her in my life at that point. She's one of my favourite people on earth

Miang tofu

Vegetable cashew curry

Pitchers of cocktails!

We had dessert in the pub, this was a cookie dough sandwich and for £3.40 it was extremely acceptable!

That middle cocktail is a bubblegin and it's soooo nice. It's gin, which I don't like, but the bubblegum flavour covers it up nicely

And here's Sarah bringing the party!

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Films of the Month - September

I forgot to write my September films post until way past the beginning of October, and the reason I forgot is because I forget loads of things, and I have reminders set in my phone for all of them. I have daily reminders, weekly, monthly, even annual ones like "Book MOT". They keep me sane and keep me knowing what I'm supposed to be doing. I had almost eighty reminders in my phone and used them daily.

Then I upgraded to iOS 13 and all my reminders disappeared. Every single one of them. It was awful. The new iOS was rolled out too quickly and a lot of bits of it were broken. But for me, reminders was the worst. Over the next couple of weeks, about half of them came back. They came in in dribs and drabs, two or three at a time, and not in the same order they had been set in. As I remembered things I added ones too, but the app in its entirety is really hard to use now. It doesn't have half the functionality that it used to. It's slow and it keeps repeating reminders. It is SO frustrating and I am not impressed!

So, I remembered about this post eventually, set myself a new reminder that took about five minutes longer than it should have, and here we are. I hate it when things don't work the way they should!

Here's what I watched in September. I only watched thirteen films, it seemed like there was a lot of good TV to watch instead:

I had never seen Rebel Without A Cause, so thought I finally would. It's okay, I'm glad I've seen it, but I didn't love it. 

Lee and I watched Rogue One together, he says every time that he thinks it's the best Star Wars film. 

I went to a birthday party and was reminded of 24 Hour Party People, which is a fantastic film. I recommend it if you haven't seen it. It's so funny. 

I'm sure you know by now that Mary Poppins is one of my favourite films. I sat cross stitching one afternoon and watched it.

This biopic of Sylvia Plath is really good and I hadn't seen it in forever, so I watched it.

I had this in my "films to watch" list, I have seen it before but not for ages. I don't love Tom Hanks but I think it's a decent enough film.

Fahrenheit 11/9, Michael Moore's newest documentary, was on Netflix so I said to Lee we should watch it. It's about the rise of Donald Trump and the current state of American politics. I won't say I "enjoyed" it, but I'm glad  I watched it and would recommend it.

Really this was a TV movie but I'm counting it. It's about people making propoganda films in World War Two, and I liked it. Plus Gemma Arterton is great!

Sam and I went to see The Big Meeting at the cinema. It's about the Durham Miners' Gala and follows three women throughout their day there. It's a documentary and really interesting. I found it quite moving in parts too!

I finally got round to watching the third Pitch Perfect film. It's not as good as the other two but it's okay.

So Lee wanted to watch all the Star Wars films so we went back to A New Hope. Luke really annoys me in this film, but I love it. 

I had never seen Dead Poet's Society, although my friend Sam loves it. I watched it one quiet Sunday and really liked it, I get why everyone thinks it's amazing.

And again, Lee and I watched Empire Strikes Back. It's one of my favourite films of all time, I love it!