Thursday, 31 December 2015

100 Things I did in 2015

1. Started this awesome list.
2. Set up a MyDogBuddy dog walking service.
3. Invented and perfected Drovers Pie.
4. Spoke at Bath Spa University.
5. Started my recipe collection
6. Started XBX chart 1 (I'll let you know how that goes...)
7. Jan- Kept my average of 3 books a month
8. Ate my first blood orange and wrote a poem about it.
9. Ran my first full mile.
10. First business trip to Denmark.
11. Consider my self a member of the Central London Jive Clique ;)
12. Tried Scallops for the first time.
13. Wrote a letter to 16 year old me.
14. Killed a chicken.
15. Visited Greenwich Park and danced in public to a busker.
16. Went to my first Advanced Ceroc night
17. March - Kept up my 3 books a month goal.
18. Ran a mile once a week for a month. (It get's easier!)
19. Made peirogi (not the best)
20. Played beetroot brownie roulette.
21. Tried razor clams
22. Turned 24
23. Visit to the V&A Wedding dress exhibit
24. Saw Miss Saigon at the prince
25. Dinner at the Colony
26. Tried my first Yoga video
27. Went to my first Southport weekender
28. Interviewed at Chambers & Partners
29. Got new dance shoes
30. Visit to The British Museum
31. CB visits London for two weeks
32. Saw Jurassic World
33. Scored a bag of catnip for my cats back home.
34. Wrote a Sonnet
35. Created a London bucket list
36. Baked Blueberry crumble squares
37. Learnt monkey swing move a bit better...
38. Paddled in V&A gardens. V&A pleasure and pain exhibition of shoes
39. Went to Hong Kong
40. Tried Quail at Naughty piglets (not that great...)
41. Camber Jamfest weekender
42. Casual wear and crazy hair party at pimlico.
43. Homemade caramel sauce for the first time.
44. Handed in my notice to
45. Started new Job at Chambers and Partners
46. Danced till 6am.
47. Inherited a Hula Hoop
48. Spun poi in Hyde Park
49. Did my first super girl aerial with S
50. Had sushi brunch at Roka in Canary Warf
51. Saw promenade theatre of Twelfth Night
52. Started learning Cantonese
53. Finished my first report for C&P
54. Tried beef jerky...gross
55. Got my first corporate pay slip
56. Wrote a poem about falling in love
57. Went to CLMJ Summer Party
58. Catch up with MH
60. Meet new bunny
61. Segway experience in windsor
62. Lunch at The Coach (Tom Kerridges restaurant in Marlow).
63. Ceroc Flash Mob (She said Yes!)
64. Tried Tofu
65. Saw Mission Impossible
66. Saw Inside Out
67. Dropped a cupboard door on my nose.
68. Made German potato salad.
69. Made Lemon curd crumble squares.
70. TCR freestyle.
71. Made Lemon rolls and lemon squares AND German potato salad.
72. Dinner with R at Wahaca.
73. Said goodbye to G until Hong Kong.
74. Met S, sister of S. :P
75. Went around the Cutty Sark.
76. Went to the Waffle House in St Albans.
77. Saw S's family home.
78. Met Mummy C (Would never call her that!)
79. Street food and video games with sexy couples club
80. Made carrot cake for S + planned Hong Kong fun
81. Dinner with dancing girls
82. Wild goose chase around north london with S.
83. Saw Book of Mormon.
84. Rehearsed Cogs.
85. Competed in Welsh Ceroc Championships
86. Walked 10K for Alzheimers and met baby cousins once removed.
87. First positive feedback session at work!
88. Visited Athens
89. Fungus hunting and risotto
90. Started Kayla regime.
91. Flying with S
92. Won first two medals in Pan Asian Ceroc Champs
93. Camber Sands Bliss Weekender
94. Met S's Family in Macau. (Also paid respect to Papa C in the Temple)
95. Competed in Midlands Ceroc Championships 2015
96. Performed Sterling as the Cogs replacement team in Hammersmith.
97. Became a taxi dancer at ISH
98. Went to Aunt's retirement party
99. Did Christmas Pimlico Bake Off
100!!! Saw in the New Year with S.

AND a couple extras
Made Bacon Salt
Had first Christmas with S.
Massive clear out of clothes and junk
Went to Southbank Christmas Market
Make resolution to read more
Make resolution to lose 5 kg this year

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Christmas Books

Easily my favourite books with Christmas themes that I've read. Can you think of any others that I should read? These seem to be my classics.

Little Women
The story seems to move from Christmas to Christmas, from giving away the breakfast to bringing Father home, Little Women has a vein of Christmas cheer running through it. I'm so fond of this book and it makes me all warm and fuzzy to read it near Christmas time.

A Christmas Carol
The Dickensian Christmas is something we're all going for and it starts right here with A Christmas Carol. All of our classic ideas of Christmas come in part from this story, as well as Queen Victoria and Albert having a hand in bringing in the family Christmas. Goodwill, Roast Goose, and a white Christmas are a must for Christmas time, throw in a reformed character and some ghosts and you've got a classic.

The Snowman
The ultimate Christmas story book, is The Snowman, even with out the iconic music by Howard Blake, Raymond Brigg's book, particularly the illustrations stay with you. Interestingly the original book is not a Christmas story and the scene with Father Christmas and the Snowman ball is not in it. But the exploration of the house and playing with the lights in the car is all in there. Even though it's not technically a Christmas book, I think it counts as an unforgettable book that we want to pick up at Christmas time. And then pop on the animation afterwards!

The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe
Meeting Father Christmas? Aslan? Snow? A magical world, and a fawn with his Christmas parcels? Yeah you can't beat C. S. Lewis for Christmas themes. In a place where it's always winter but never Christmas, it takes the efforts of four children from London escaping the War to bring Christmas magic back to Narnia. It's a good un.

The Tailor of Gloucester
I was lucky enough to have the box set of Beatrix Potter books when I was growing up and the one that stands out as a Christmas tale is this one. Telling the story of a Christmas miracle where an old tailor is saved by his resident mice. It's a lovely little book and is so christmassy and joyful. Definitely one to read to children at Christmas time.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Books About Dancing

Some of you will know that my hobby is dancing. When I was growing up I read a couple books that had dancing in them. This is a list of the best dancing books I've ever read.

Sappy note ahead. I've been extraordinarily lucky to fall in love on the dance floor. Many of the books talk about meeting partners on the dance floor and I think Dance and Love are linked in these books. Love of the dance and love of your partners.

As the Waltz was Ending Emma Butterworth

Ballet Shoes Noel Streatfeild

On Pointe Lori Ann Grover

The Gods of Tango Carolina De Robertis

I'm sure there are more out there, please let me know if something is missing from the list! I'd love to read some more. Preferably not on ballet because they all seem to be about ballet!

Thursday, 3 December 2015

November Novels

Double post today! Remember to check out my Advent Calendar as well.

The Bone Clocks
David Mitchel
Sceptre 2/9/2014 paperback

I saw so many people reading The Bone Clocks on the tube that I had to buy it for myself as a little pre-Christmas treat. This story has that strange quality where even half way through I wasn't entirely sure where the story was going. But the writing was exquisite and pulled me in through each section of the book. It's such a slow build up, but I felt that the climax was a bit rushed.

Spoilers ahead.

I always have an aversion to anyone describing force fields etc with colour. Oh the red shield pushed the blue shield which they threw out with their mind. I just find it a bit lazy because it's like describing a movie version to titillate VIEWERS. I'm a reader, let me imagine it without attributing colours.

All in all, I think anything that was happening in the real world with slightly odd happenings, like meeting strange old ladies or experiencing a spirit talking through someone was brilliant, realistic and well handled, the mad force field throwing psychic battle was pretty poor, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire did it better, unfortunately.

The story tied together very nicely and I would love to read more of Mitchel's books. But less of the mystical Illuminati story next time. I've heard good things about Cloud Atlas.