Monday, 23 May 2011

My wish list....part one!

The subject of this post has been simmering away on the backburner for the last few weeks. I've been sitting here scratching my head trying to make a wish list of "Things To Do Before I Die" and so far my list is pretty pathetic in length. Either I'm quite content with my lot or I have a rubbish sense of adventure and imagination! I recently read a magazine article in which the writer made a wish for each of the fifty years of her life.That's a lot of wishes! I asked friends for inspiration. Sky diving, wingwalking and Bungee jumping were a few suggestions. Obviously someone with a greater sense of adventure than myself! My wishes are pretty tame in comparison! So without any further ado, here's my decidedly shorter list !
1. Sail around the Greek Islands. My dream holiday for years has been to charter a yacht and sail from island to island. Dropping anchor, swimming in the warm Aegean Sea. Eating in charming beachfront tavernas. All very Zorba the Greek with a little bit of Shirley Valentine thrown in for good measure !

2. Learn to sail......a necessity if I'm to achieve wish number 1 !

3. Wear high heels....and gain a few inches. Then I can talk to Mr R's chest rather than his navel! Might need stabalisers though to stop me from falling off them!
4. Own a coffee or tea shop. I love the idea of being my own boss. I love to bake and making people happy. Wether I have any business sense is another matter!

5.Go to a spa. The nearest I have ever been to a bit of pampering is a pedicure in my local hairdressers.

6.Drive onto a motorway with my eyes open!! Hope no traffic cops are reading this!!

7.Cuddle a newborn piglet. I've been assured on good authority that this is a "must do"

8.Visit New York. I just need to get plane phobic Mr R in the air!

9.Ride a bike without wobbling. They say that you never forget to ride a bike....there are exceptions!

10. Be the proud owner of a Kitchenaid food mixer. Some people go gaga over shoes, for me it's kitchen equipment.
11. Learn to paint. I need to unleash the inner Monet, Picasso et al in me!

12. Write a childrens book. I used to make up the tales of a certain Mrs Flowers and her pals as bedtime stories for the boys when they were little. Even now they remind me of her wild adventures!

13.Live in Bristol, preferably in a Victorian town house. I've never lived in anything but a modern house. How I dream of bay windows,fireplaces,ceiling roses!

14. Wear skirts, but first I need the lumpy,bumpy varicose veins attending to.

15. See my boys, happy, fulfilling their own dreams and making successes of their lives.

This list is by no means complete and every now and again I'll be adding to it. But this will do for now!

Monday, 16 May 2011

The small matter of a cake!

I like cake...alot! All cake in my opinion is good. Be it the humble little rock cake,or the most extravagent of confectionary creations!There is never a time when the sight,smell and taste of a soft sponge, rich fruit cake or moist chocolate gateau doesn't have me almost swooning. Cake is naughty. Cake is comforting. Cake is always,always delicious!
As much as I enjoy eating the odd mouthful or two (or three,four....) of sweet yumminess, I get as much, if not more enjoyment when I don my pinny and whip up a  quick batch or two. There's something very theraputic in the process of creating a cake.A warm kitchen, the radio playing in the background and the rhythmic beating together of  ingredients somehow helps me switch off from the humdrum  and tribulations of daily life. I very rarely make cakes to be eaten chez nous. Most of the time it's just me and number two son and there's no way that the pair of us can eat anything more than the odd morsel or two. My son isn't a big cake eater and I'm trying to be good in anticipation of not looking like a beached whale on my wedding day! Fortunately for my colleagues at work, they have become my willing guinea pigs and are more than happy test drive my latest baking creation. As long as they eat my cake, I'll carry on making them!

So, now that we have a wedding date and venue organised, my thoughts have turned whether we want a theme, thoughts on colour schemes, how to style the venue and of course the cake! Do I want a conventional wedding cake or shall I go for something different! What are my options?
I could go down the royal route and go the whole hog and have a magnificant  multi- tiered  beauty of a cake.
Followed by a second little chocolate number
But that would be sooo unoriginal, and besides our guest list is so small that our guests would be taking home doggy sackloads of  the cake to try and get rid of it!

We could go continental
And choose a croquembouche. Or a
french macaron pyramid. Looks good, but not really cake is it!

What about a fabulous chocolate extravaganza from Choccywoccydoodah
Tempting, but not really my thing!

How about something cheesey....
From the English Cheesecake Company  or
         ... a cheese wedding cake! Oooh no... That's not cake!

I could play very safe and decide on the ubiquitous cupcake....
image The Artisan Cupcake Company

.....but despite them looking exceedingly pretty, it's just not quite fitting in with my vision!

 How about doughnuts....
          .....getting closer! Or....

   ....a tiered victoria sandwich. Now we are getting somewhere!

What has really captured my imagination is the idea of a cake spread. A table filled with an assortment of homemade cakes (including cupcakes!) displayed  on vintage plates and cake stands.
            I like the idea of using cake bunting and flags.
     
I have this mad idea of doing all of the baking myself. In reality this of course could prove to be somewhat impractical and a logistical nightmare. As everyone reminds me...I may be a little bit busy on the day of run up to my wedding to be baking from morning to night. It's a lovely idea though and one I would like to pull off. But do you know  what? I bet we end up with something like this....
   and be quite ok with it!                                             

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

A rather excited fifty something bride!

After months of driving my poor friends and family mad by talking non stop about mine and Mr R's nuptials, but not actually getting round to doing anything about those oh so little important matters, such as setting a date and finding a venue, I can at last jump up and down in a frenzy of excitement and announce to the world...."Pencil in the 7th July in next year's diary, because you've got a wedding to attend!"
 One very excited lady!

I had high hopes for Goldbrick House in Bristol. Perfectly placed, great reputation, not too big or too small, looked good in the photos and within our budget. So, all boxes ticked. Booking an appointment to go and give the venue the once over was the first big step that we had actually taken towards doing anything about organising a wedding. To say that I was excited is something of an understatement!
So we've been, oohed and aahed, asked all the important questions, left and smiled at each other and agreed that we had found our venue and after almost booking a Monday instead of a Saturday, our wedding date was set.
I don't think that poor Mr R had much of an idea of how much his bride to be would then go into wedding planning overdrive! So many conversations now start with....I've been thinking.....I've seen a potential photographer, stationer etc etc.... What do you think of this idea........Can you just take a quick look at this website ! I wouldn't be surprised if my poor intended doesn't decide to take to the hills! Is it any wonder that he's taken to walking around the house wearing headphones!
 Poor Mr R needs to escape all of this wedding talk!

My little blue book is starting to fill up fast. There are pages full of lists of potential vendors, readings, music choices,guest lists..day and evening, themes and colour schemes.I haven't got round to sorting out a mood board yet but that's on my "to do" list.Top of the list of priorities is to find the photographer. There are many very talented photographers to choose from in the Bristol area that choosing one will be difficult. I worry that our little wedding wont match up with what they are used to. Viewing their websites full of amazing photos of gorgeous young couples in amazing settings has me worrying that we might get rejected in favour of a bigger, more photogenic wedding. Is there a photographer out there who can work his magic with a very tall groom and very short bride? Can he,or she,disguise my wrinkles, batwings, rather wide posterior? I still want to look like me of course....just tweeked a little! I am notoriously fussy about having my photo taken.Specs have to come off, only shots from the boobs upwards,no toothy smiles...a photographers nightmare!
Something of a photographers challenge!!

So the countdown finally begins. I can at last, write posts about the journey to our Big Day and share our ups and downs of that journey with you.I've felt a little guilty of late that I've misled you a little by using a wedding orientated blog title when I've written so little about the subject, however I'd hate to bore you silly with solely wedding talk so I promise to ramble on about this,that and the other now and again!
Until next time. xx