Friday, 31 December 2010

New beginnings................

So.....2011 is almost upon us! out with the old and in with the new! I feel as though the next year is going to be a good one and I am going into it with a hopeful and happy heart, the new year is a blank page and I hope all of us fill that page with an amazing story or two! May 2011 be everything you hope for dear friends,be healthy,be happy,be loved.

Happy New Year! xxxx

Friday, 24 December 2010

Christmas love.................

Wishing all of my lovely friends a Happy Christmas and a healthy and abundant New Year.

My wishes for all of you are that in 2011 all of your dreams come true,that you and yours remain safe and healthy.......and that you are loved and cherished every single day!

Thank you for being my friends.

Gena xxx

Friday, 3 December 2010


It is that time of year again.The time when slowly but surely.....I come undone.
At this moment I am indoors whilst outdoors rages the coldest whitest winter I have ever seen,I have not been able to work,my stress levels have soared and reached an all time high,the day job is impossible to do in this weather and I am panicking.
It is twenty two days until Christmas,I have not done ANY Christmas shopping,I have not wrote a single card and the thought of decorating the house fills me with no joy whatsoever.Bah Humbug.I had a big disappointment this week which made my mood plummet,but hey ho.
I am aware of course that I seriously need to cheer up,count my blessings,think of those less fortunate than me etc. and I do.Truly.Sometimes.
I read a very useful exercise in grattitude this week in a book I got from the library,it suggested that for every negative thought you have you should replace it with something positive that you are thankful for,so in an effort to become a better more festive person,here is my grattitude list,Hell before you know it I will be dressing like a sexy elf and singing carols!

I am grateful for.......

1.Epsom salts.No I am not joking,throw a box in the bath and you will feel virtuous I promise.

2.A glass of bubbly in a candle lit bath,even if it is just cava brut!

3.My new sparkly bracelet.It makes my arm green but I couldnt love it more.

4.Facebook...yes I know! but I have some lovely chums on fb and we have such fun!

5.Desperate housewives on Sunday night,I so want to live on Wisteria Lane!

6.Text messages ........thrilling! however did we do without them before?

7.Finding beautiful,stylish well made vintage still takes my breath away.

8.Cath Kidston tea towels...nuf said.

9.Baking a big fat fluffy Victoria sandwich cake!

10.Hope.The belief that its all going to be ok....eventually.

See....I am feeling much more chipper already!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

On smiling on the outside..........................


Yet again,Christmas is looming and I am slowly unravelling.I have not done any shopping,due mainly to lack of funds,lack of time and frankly....lack of interest.I am deeply ashamed that I do not embrace the festive season the way many people do,how I would love to be the type of Woman who had it all wrapped up in October and spent the rest of her time participating in homely,crafty pursuits.But,alas....I am not.Whats in it for me? very little,lots of running around for one bloody day! Bah humbug!
I am so busy these days,where has this year gone? On the upside,I have been sourcing some wonderful vintage goodies for the website which never ceases to thrill me,I am ashamedly addicted to 'I'm a celebrity....' (dont start me off on Gillian Mckeith!) I have developed a penchant for candlelit bathtime with a glass of bubbly and as usual at this time of the year,have sucumbed to a rather bothersome satsuma addiction. I am keeping a journal,making wishlists for 2011.....and waiting,always waiting...and smiling....on the outside at least.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Through the keyhole...............

Do you remember that TV show called 'Through the keyhole'? Lloyd Grossman took us all on a tour of a mystery celebrities home and the panel of guests on the show had to guess the identity of the celeb.Blogging is a bit like that,we all love looking at other peoples living space dont we? so because it is a dreary wet weekend here,armed with my trusty Nikon I snapped away at my leisure,how different ones humble abode becomes through a lens!

The silly pink kitchen......

The raspberry sofa unusually vacant,normally taken over by Daughters and dogs.....

Crystals and candles because I love all things sparkly...

A special boy waiting for his Master to arrive home...

Beautiful sepia photographs of my parents and grandparents...

Hmmm.....who lives in a house like this?

Tuesday, 19 October 2010


Kind o’er the kinderbank leans my Myfanwy,
White o’er the playpen the sheen of her dress,
Fresh from the bathroom and soft in the nursery
Soap scented fingers I long to caress.

Were you a prefect and head of your dormit'ry?
Were you a hockey girl, tennis or gym?
Who was your favourite? Who had a crush on you?
Which were the baths where they taught you to swim?

Smooth down the Avenue glitters the bicycle,
Black-stockinged legs under navy blue serge,
Home and Colonial, Star, International,
Balancing bicycle leant on the verge.

Trace me your wheel-tracks, you fortunate bicycle,
Out of the shopping and into the dark,
Back down the avenue, back to the pottingshed,
Back to the house on the fringe of the park.

Golden the light on the locks of Myfanwy,
Golden the light on the book on her knee,
Finger marked pages of Rackham's Hans Anderson,
Time for the children to come down to tea.

Oh! Fullers angel-cake, Robertson’s marmalade,
Liberty lampshade, come shine on us all,
My! what a spread for the friends of Myfanwy,
Some in the alcove and some in the hall.

Then what sardines in half-lighted passages!
Locking of fingers in long hide-and-seek.
You will protect me, my silken Myfanwy,
Ring leader, tom-boy, and chum to the weak.

Sir John Betjeman.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Kitchen love...........

It is Sunday morning and it is raining cats and dogs.Nothing new there,this seems to becoming a rather wet Autumn here! However,although when I am out traveling at work,I curse the heavens for opening their arms on such days,the days when I am at home become rather blissful for me.I love nothing more than being ensconced in my rather silly kitchen(yes those are poodles on the blinds) and putting on a pinny(pinny love theres another whole post) lighting enough candles to torch the place to the ground,listening to radio four and cooking. I have a rather weird relationship with food,I eat sporadically,often forgetting to eat myself,but always longing to cook.I do however crave good food I love traditional cooking,my Mother has been my best teacher,but I also love to try new exciting recipes coaxed out of friends or read in a magazine.
So today..........fairy lights on,candles lit.....fresh coffee and the Sunday times or a good book this morning....

Then this afternoon,perhaps a spot of baking,what do you think? is it going to be a good day?

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Tales from a suburban housewife part one.

Well Autumn has clearly arrived and my brief romance with summertime has come to an abrupt end,the flimsy dresses packed away in my rather fetching leopard print suitcase under the bed,along with all the plans that I never actually carried out,such is life. Lucy has started high school and hates it.More stress.I continue to juggle my lot with the dexterity of a Billy Smarts clown,the days are racing by,cooler days,we have had a freakishly mish mash of weather here,one minute terrential rainfall,next sunshine,often followed by the most magical of rainbows,which is a rather apt analogy of life at the moment,nature continues to astound me and confound me in equal measures. Life seems to be teaching me some big lessons these days,I travel this road one step at a time and am strangely excited for the future.
I have had some truly heart warming experiences of late, I rediscovered an old schoolfriend on facebook( I simply love facebook for this kind of thing) and then perhaps only a week later bumped into the same friend in a supermarket! how amazing,serendipity,I love it.
I can almost feel a shift in my mood as the seasons change,spring and summertime are my favourites,all that new life in the garden coupled with sunshine and lighter evenings,I confess makes me completely giddy,but as Autumn sneaks in through the back gate,I become qiueter,my nesting instincts kick in and making life as comfy and cosy as possible becomes my religion.When the rain is pouring down outside,how utterly blissful it is to be alone in the candle lit kitchen which becomes my haven,cooking,baking,listening to Ella Fitzgerald and dreaming........

Are you embracing Autumn as much as I am?

Saturday, 28 August 2010

The last days of Summer...............

It is the end of August and already Summer seems like a lifetime away.It has for the best part been a good one,I am of course comparing it to last Summer,when you will all remember I lost my Dad,the summer of hot tears and bearing up,but here I am a whole year on and I have survived.This Summer has been the Summer of hope,the Summer of dreams,I have made some lovely new friends,I have partied perhaps a little too hard with old ones! I have worked hard and relaxed too little,I didnt have as many barbeques as I planned,I did not get to spend as much time at my allotment as I would have liked,but I have awoke each day with hope in my heart and a feeling that something good is just around the corner.I have loved my garden this Summer,it has been a beautiful secret fairytale world,I have loved the School holidays despite being so busy,I love the lazy mornings and my sleepy girls.I have rediscovered Donna Summer and she is my chosen soundtrack in the car just now,I have loved reading A streetcar named Desire and watching 'medium' late at night.Only a week left and its back to School and soon Autumn will be here.I am sort of excited!

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Wish list............

It is a dull rainy day today,I do hope we see some more sunshine in August.The day did not start well,I awoke with a headache and a grumpy disposition,shouldn't have had that last glass of wine last night.Went out to the car thinking a little jaunt to Sainsburys would cheer me up,only to discover I had a flat tyre,waited an hour for the breakdown service to come and change it and then tootled off to the aforementioned supermarket and bought lots of unnecessary items,returned home only to be plunged into a power cut for another hour,however Hubby had very decently tidied up whilst I was out so its not all bad.We all sat around like helpless fools whilst the electricity was off,the children completely dumbfounded without the television or computers,Thank God it was only off an hour otherwise I suspect they would have slipped into boredom induced comas.Myself,I relished the peace and quiet and to amuse myself,I made a mental wish goes;

1. I wish (obviously) this headache would go away.

2.I wish my life was easier/less complicated/without drama(or are these all the same?)

3.I wish most of my shoes didn't hurt my feet.

4.I wish I was fabulously wealthy/beautiful/thin.Yes I am very shallow.

5.I wish that Saturday night TV was better.

6.I wish I had a warm chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream .

7.I wish Hello magazine would put some decent celebs in instead of Z Lister's like Katie Price and Kerry Katona.

8.I wish I had a real Birkin bag.

9.I wish it was a hot sunny day.

10.I wish I could have stayed in bed all day.

Had enough yet? yes me too all this wishing has left me weak and craving chocolate......wish I didn't like chocolate.

Sunday, 18 July 2010


I am,by neccesity,a fairly organised person.I plan ahead,I mark my calender with forthcoming appointments and events.I am a working gal and so meals are planned,chores are attended to.................sometimes. However, whilst I can juggle my responsibilities with the best of them,Oh Lordy I am easily distracted! I appreciate it is important not to live our lives without ever stopping to smell the roses,but Hell,there are times when I am not merely stopping to smell the roses,but am picking them,de-thorning them,hunting out a suitable vessel to put them in and sprinkling a few rose petals on the bed!( I am of course speaking in metaphors here!) But you get the gist? I wander off very easily,I start to do something,for example tidy the Enid Blyton bookshelf I recently created,easy task,but no, five minutes in and I am lying on the sofa with the Rilloby fair Mystery! Or when I periodically decide to have a clothing cull( all day job this one) I end up trying on dresses I either forgot I had or bought in a sale...yaddah, organising the cocktail cabinet,oh dear that was a lost afternoon, Updating my ipod with tracks from cd's?checking facebook? lets not even go there.
So you see my friends I am very easily distracted......what was I doing again?

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Those lazy hazy days of summer.................

"Summer Afternoon............the two most beautiful words in the English language" (Henry James)

Summertime is my very favourite of all the seasons and I totally agree with the above quotation,the very idea of a summer afternoon conjures up all manner of lovely sunny images.

For me at the moment,life is busy,a crazy roundabout of work and play, but also about making time for lazy lemon coloured mornings drinking tea in the garden, catching up on reading a little at a time.School events! goodness but they cram a lot into these last couple of weeks! listening to Elvis singing 'kentucky rain' in the car and Oh bliss! strawberries picked early morning in the garden! Balmy nights spent lying on top of the bed as opposed to in it,and dreams.....always the dreams,writing in my journal,devouring 'love letters of great men' because my inner Carrie Bradshaw has been resurrected with the release of Sex and the city 2! crying quietly in my car now and then because I miss my Dad,pulling myself together and buying spinach and pine nuts,because life goes on and dinner must be made.Looking forward.....not sure what to,but coveting a feeling that something good is just around the corner, supper in town with the girls, a glass of wine in the garden of a very dear friend,lunching on ceasar salad and the Sunday Times.Treasuring my Daughters chatter every single day,loving growing my own produce at the allotment................these are good days.

I am blessed.

happy summertime friends!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Vintage housekeeping.....the Brocante way.

I am my friends an addict. It's official.I cannot go through the day without checking in to my favourite site If you are already a Brocante affecionado,then you will no doubt be familiar with the delightful Alison and her Lavender scented world,I have been visiting for around four years now,it remains my favourite ever place to be online.There is very little in my life that has not been Brocanted,if you are puzzled by this statement,then take a look,learn ,if you please how to brocante your handbag,your fridge...........your life. Wallow in a world made just for us,Vintage girls who love our homes,our children,our back gardens,sit back and read about Alisons daily dramas,nod your head in agreement or wipe away a tear at her searing honesty,delight in her puttery treats which indeed make life that little bit lovelier,trail through the archives at your leisure and discover a whole new world,a world which can only be described by a favourite word of Alisons as...............................Scrumptious!

Sunday, 13 June 2010


I am a huge poetry fan as you know and you may have noticed I have posted a few poems by the contemporary poet Carol Ann Duffy,who is of course Poet Laureate,she writes of life and of love in a language that is simple yet profound and often her poems deeply resonate with me.This week after a little splurge on Amazon,I became the owner of 'Rapture' by the delightful Ms Duffy,it is a collection of love poems,described by 'The Times' as "Brilliant,beautiful and heart-aching" I couldnt put it better myself! and my choice to share with you today? for its simplistic beauty............Text.


I tend the mobile now
like an injured bird.

We text,text,text
our significant words.

I re-read your first
your second,your third.

look for your small xx
feeling absurd.

The codes we send
arrive with a broken chord.

I try to picture your hands,
their image is blurred.

Nothing my thumbs press
will ever be heard.

Sunday, 6 June 2010


Because there is simply no such thing as a lie in at Chez King,I am sat here blogging at what does seem like an unearthly hour.My head feels a little fuzzy,still lingering are the effects of a two day migraine which happily seems to be on its way.Soon I will go into the silly pink kitchen and make strong coffee,I am in a Sinatra mood this morning,crooners were made for Sunday mornings and late nights.The sun is not shining yet,the day seems slightly cooler,I may bake lemon drizzle cake later on and perhaps some cheese scones,I need to go to my allotment and plant sprouting broccolli,I am filing unwanted thoughts of paperwork to the back of my mind,already a 'to do' list is forming in my thoughts.I dont want 'to do' I want to read.The Sunday times,later perhaps a thrilling novel,there are so many on my list.I want to shower and smell of lemons,sit in the garden and listen to the constant chatter of my girls.It is Sunday......

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

On being alone.......

I want to be alone,as Greta Garbo famously pouted all husky voice and heavy eyed.I know exactly how she felt,whilst I truly am grateful for my wonderful family and friends,there are days when I do just love.....being entirely alone! and this is my favourite place to be when life is too noisy,when I do not wish to open the mail,think about what to cook for dinner,worry about the unpaid bills or indeed be constantly reminded that yes,the ironing pile is actually taller than me.
My Allotment,bolt hole,place of worship....take your pick,here I can be.Just be.Here I dig and weed and plant and let my thoughts ebb and flow,

Here is where the magic is, teeny tiny baby cherries on a tree planted just last year.

Gooseberries,like glistening beads in the sunlight!

Is'nt Mother nature just the very best Teacher!

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Catching up......................

Good Lord am I tired!

It seems like the weeks are just whizzing by and I am getting very little done around the house,despite being in perpetual tidying up mode,but what with the day job,kids,blah blah blah,you know how it goes.
However,not one to appear as a glass half empty person,I do actually feel a little shift in my mood at the moment,I am loving the lighter nights and the vanilla coloured mornings,although it is still quite chilly here in the North,I am loving wearing slightly summery clothes(cardi still required)and at last! hurrah! flip flops!(fitflops,not all they are cracked up to be) I am absolutely loving desperate housewives,Lewis and the re runs of The hairy bikers,I have a pile of books by my bedside that I dip in and out of,but nothing is really grabbing me right now.I am feverishly excited at the thought of picking fruit at my allotment again and have decided to grow spinach,sweetcorn and courgettes as well this year.I have lots of lovely vintage stock to add to the website soon and as always am behaving like a lottery winner when I stumble upon a wonderful vintage find,speaking of which,my latest personal acquisition is a Vintage statue of Jesus which I love but frankly doesn't look right anywhere and is presently situated on the stairs,where no doubt he will come a cropper if I don't find a suitable place very soon!
So there we go! how has your week been?

Friday, 23 April 2010


Well waddya know!!!

Lovely Elaine from Ted and Bunny has bestowed upon me this glorious tag! apparently the deal is,that I list seven things that you do not already know about me! Ooooh! thats a tough one! I have bared my soul blogging for some years now,first on typepad and now here at my new home on blogger,what else is there to know? hmmm,lets think.............

1) I look forward to getting dressed every single day! I have to look the best I possibly can, its a self esteem thing,being well groomed keeps my spirits up.Bizzare.

2) I have a very strong belief in the afterlife although I am not terribly religious.

3)I adore spinach.Mmmmm.....

4)If I had to have a song as my personal anthem it would be 'Unwritten' by Natasha Bedingfield.

5)I suffer from bouts of unbridled sadness (hormonal me thinks) but I do bounce back.

6)My all time favourite Actress is Vivien Leigh.

7)I have two tattoos!

There you go! seven useless and not that interesting pieces of information about me!

Thank you Elaine!

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

On my wish list................

I know,I know of all the things I could wish for at the moment,I am seriously coveting a pair of fitflops, yes thats right,not your average flip flops,but these babies,which apparently give your bum,thighs and calfs a good old work out just by walking about in them! fabulous isnt it! I mean whats not to like? Do any of you ladies have a pair? and if so opinions please! before I shell out the fifty quid!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Happy Easter!

Wishing all of my blogging friends a peaceful and Happy Easter!

Friday, 2 April 2010

Billie Holiday and chocolate cake...........

Today has been a good day.The first day of the Easter holidays was spent firstly shopping with my Mum,then home,pinny tied on and knuckling down to some serious kitchen time with Lucy.Candles scented with macintosh apples and Billie Holiday singing 'I'm a fool to love you' and the smell of Heaven drifting from the oven.................

Chocolate cake and Devils food cupcakes............

smartie cookies.......Bliss!

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

After the lunch...............

I heard the delicious Miss Dahl reciting a snippet of this last night and was once again reminded, how utterly splendid a poet the lovely Wendy Cope is...........


On Waterloo Bridge where we said our goodbyes,
the weather conditions bring tears to my eyes.
I wipe them away with a black woolly glove
And try not to notice I've fallen in love

On Waterloo Bridge I am trying to think:
This is nothing. you're high on the charm and the drink.
But the juke-box inside me is playing a song
That says something different. And when was it wrong?

On Waterloo Bridge with the wind in my hair
I am tempted to skip. You're a fool. I don't care.
the head does its best but the heart is the boss-
I admit it before I am halfway across

Wendy Cope

Monday, 22 March 2010

My latest love..........

Ah me! Is there really anything better than hearing the soft thud of a cardboard package from Amazon landing on your doormat of a morning? Methinks not.

I am totally besotted with my new purchase,it is called 'Eat me;The stupendous,self raising world of cupcakes and bakes according to cookie girl' to be honest it was worth buying for the pictures alone,cookie girl is clearly a genius,but a genius with a pink fluffy soul! this book is so girly! and so me! with recipes for all kinds of lovely frothy cakes and bakes for each season,such as white christmas cupcakes for winter(obviously) lemon finger cookies for spring,margarita cupcakes!(hurrah!) for parties,I fear I may never stop baking for the rest of my days!
It is my day off tomorrow, Cookie girl and I will be in the kitchen...........cant wait.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Running away with the Gypsies..............

When I was a child,my Mother in times of stress and in a rather dramatic fashion,would declare "That's it! I am going to run away with the Gypsies!" of course she never did,I never took it seriously at all because I knew it was just Mother letting off steam and of course if she was serious then she would have took me along too and frankly I quite fancied it,all those swirly colourful skirts and huge hoopy earrings,who wouldn't? but I digress.Lately,I have felt like running away with the Gypsies myself,I so know how my Mother felt.At the risk of sounding like a born moaner I do feel that sometimes the Gods just aren't on my side,yes I know,Gratitude is the attitude! and truly I practice this every day,I do,I am very grateful for all that is good in my life,but Hells bells cut me some slack would you? It was Lucy's Birthday on Thursday and as fate would have it she came down with a horrendous cold,therefore Birthday plans were put on hold until today,when Lo! now I have it! I feel like Hell! that,coupled with a rather nasty letter from the bank,mot due on the car and a day job that just ain't going too well,has me feeling a little less than chipper! the phrase one step forward and two steps back springs to mind at the moment.However,one must soldier on,so I have liberally doused myself with vic,downed the paracetamol and am bracing myself for an afternoon at Pizza hut(eurgggh I cant even think about pizza) followed by Alice in wonderland in 3D,surely Johnny Depp will lift me out of this misery guts persona I have adopted of late.
Tomorrow is another day,my inner Scarlett O'Hara is saying,yes indeedy Miss Scarlett,but perhaps I should retrieve those rather large hoop earrings from my jewellery box.......just in case!

Thursday, 18 March 2010

My Lovely Lucy...............

My beautiful baby girl is eleven today! can you believe it? already,woosh! where did those years go? Well,we did have a fun day planned,but unfortunately she is off school poorly and we are therefore housebound,poor Lucy! However,all being well at the weekend we are going to the cinema with big sister Katie and best friend Marni,to see Alice in Wonderland in 3D,eeek! I am more excited than the kids!

Happy Birthday my little Cherub and be well again soon,we love you very much.xxxxx

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

In a Bath Teashop.....................

Let us not speak,for the love we bear one another-let us hold hands and look,
She,such an ordinary little woman;He,such a thumping crook;
But both,for a moment,little lower than the Angels in the teashops inglenook.

John Betjeman.

Just because I love it!

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Guilty pleasures........

Oh me oh my! some days I am just plain bad!

Today is my day off work and though I did plan on a houseworkfest of the highest standard,I failed miserably from the outset! instead I had my legs waxed,bought shedloads of chocolate,visited a psychic,ate the afore mentioned chocolate and now here I am at 5.15 in the afternoon,glass of chilled pinot grigio in hand,blogging! Its a slippery slope my friends!
Here for your perusal is a list of my 'guilty pleasures' please feel free to comment in the vein that I am not really so bad!............or am I?

1.I eat marmite from the jar,yep,stick my finger in and suck.

2.I sometimes sneak an hour in bed in the afternoon when the house is empty,bliss!

3.I have a really bad sunglasses addiction,cant stop buying them.

4.ditto shoes.

5.ditto handbags.

6.I love watching Columbo re runs!

7.Sometimes I eat the unhealthiest of foods ever,yesterday lunch was a mars bar and full fat coke.

8.I am obsessed with 'come dine with me' actually most cookery programmes.

9.sometimes when I am alone I listen to Abba!

10.I constantly bare my soul blogging!................

Tomorrow I will be better!