25 February 2014

London loves

Last summer, I packed up the contents of my tiny South London flat (considering the size, it took surprisingly long) and waved goodbye to the Big Smoke. 

I'd been living in the capital for five whole years, and it was time for a change. Plus, my husband-to-be had taken a job in The North and I kind of wanted us to live together again.

Moving out of London in my white van. OK, it's not really my white van. 

I didn't think I'd miss it, because the reality of living in the metrop can be a bit tedious.

Eg, even though your mates live in the same city, it always, without fail, takes an hour to get to them. And your morning commute is mostly spent with your face pressed against a businessman's armpit.

Now, I can see actual hills and trees from my window, and we have this crazy outdoor space which the northerners call a garden. I'm excited to try that out in the summer.

However, when my bestie Emily and I met up in London last weekend, I gorged myself on all the London things I do miss.

Example 1: COS. Have you been? Go. It's full of utter wonders, and I came away with a jumper, a top, and a dent in my debit card.

Example 2: nonchalant service. We went to Grillshack, where a very friendly chap informed me, as I ordered two coffees, that I could pour it myself. "And... tap water?" I asked tentatively. A nod in the direction of a water cooler told me all I needed to know.

London gets away with this, and I was quite happy to fill our mugs up with a tasty little latte. I'm just glad we weren't hungry at that point, I'm not great at cooking burgers.

Grillshack: Good coffee, so London. 

Example 3: Drinking is always ok. At lunch, Emily and I ordered so much dim sum that, when it arrived, it formed a precarious, steaming tower on our table.

Obviously we had to order a lot of prosecco to help it all go down.

Emily enjoying a casual amount of dim sum for lunch. 

Then we went to Pepito, a sherry bar in King's Cross. I LOVE a sherry. Ours came in such big glasses that, by the end of the night, we were laughing uncontrollably about pork chops.

The jaunt reminded me why I fell for London in the first place.

But it also reminded me why I'm happy to have moved on.

Fresh air. Happy lungs. Happy heart. Gar - den.


21 February 2014

Winter Face Ache

Snuggling up by a crackling fire, buying more toasty jumpers than truly necessary, finding every excuse to drink mulled wine ("It's Friday! Thursday! Wednesday! Breakfast!")... there are so many reasons why I love the winter. 

Sadly, one thing lets this season down. My face!

At the start of winter, just as the chill sets in, my skin's still got a happy, post-summer glow.

But I feel it slipping away just after Christmas (possibly thanks to endless carb-loading and a few too many mulled wines for breakfast).

Then, like clockwork, Crazy Grumpy About My Face Hannah arrives.

This year, having armed myself with a January detox plan and more health foods than you could shake a stick at, I was hoping not to suffer from the annual Winter Face Ache.

I've been eating a LOT of green things. 

However, here I am, blighted by not-so-fit February skin. It's dry, dull and I'm totally over it.

I feel bad for my face. I keep forcing it to endure brisk winter walks followed by hours locked in my office getting bombarded by central heating.

I know I'm not doing it any favours. I read somewhere that the water in your skin actually freezes when it's freezing outside, which sounds all kinds of yuk.

Making the most of some winter sun. 

So I've informed my husband that we must move to sunnier climes forthwith.

I'm thinking, the south of France. I can spend my days swanning around the Riviera avec laptop, penning features while absorbing plenty of Vitamin D.

But I'm not entirely sure that he's taking me seriously. So for now, I guess it's back to doing a little sun dance every morning and spending way too much on fancy moisturisers.


18 February 2014

Late to the party

Here I am, just a couple of millennia behind the times. 

I'm not usually so tardy. In fact, I used to attend parties as my actual job (as a journalist, not a lady of the night) so being on time was pretty much essential.

And yet I've been ridiculously late to the party when it came to creating a blog.

I'm blaming my Twitter obsession, but it's finally dawned on me that 140 characters just isn't enough.

There's nothing more frustrating than having to go back and crop out grammar for the sake of a microblog, and I ruddy love grammar.

Drinking wine and playing games have been taking up valuable blogging time.

Plus, I've got some brilliant friends who have been blogging for ages.

Like the beautiful AND hilarious Kim Willis. Her blog, Lunacy Of Ink, is here if you want a peak at something a smidge more profesh.

Anyway, it was clearly high time I jumped on board.

So, welcome! Do stay tuned for my thoughts on married life, friendships, being 30 etc, as well as the occasional snippet of celebrity gossip.

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