chelsea flower show

made it to the flower show -always incredibly busy when you first go in, but much more comfortable and less crowded as the early evening draws in.  i always get garden envy – wondering why my tiny little plot is not as neat or bursting with flowers as these are, but then tell myself that these are show gardens intended to entice you.  so much inspiration  – from sheds, to pots, to meadows and flowers – there was definitely a more wild flowers meadow feel with beautiful rich tones of burnt orange and rust.


modern usage of our churches

earlier this week we went to see  branford marsalis at the union chapel – what an amazing venue!    and what an unusual evening, branford played solo sax for an hour and half – some were classical pieces, some were jazzy, and some were quite strange wanderings into almost sci fi film track sounding music….. all adds to my education of jazz musicians…….

churches now have to be very flexible with their uses  – with high maintenance costs, they are all opening their doors to help pay the bills.  the actors church, st paul’s church, in covent garden has its own theatre company, so look out for future productions. the garden is haven in the midst of the bustle of the market .

its lovely to walk around smithfields on a sunday when its quiet and explore – its strange how tranquil parts of london become on a weekend; but if you are there in the week, its good to visit st bartholomew the great – its a beautiful old church originating from the 12C – the cafe is open for breakfast and some evenings its open for cocktails – its very atmospheric! i saw a spectacular theatre performance there, so keep an eye out for events that go on there.

st lukes church in old street is a hawksmoor church that also holds lot of concerts and workshops, and its where the london symphony orchestra hold their rehearsals.  natalie (alfie’s girlfriend) actually sang a solo there recently with the camden youth jazz band.

st pancras old church, which has been a place of worship since the 4th century,  is another atmospheric church that holds concerts.

i first saw st barnabas church in soho recently and was taken back by this gem of a church right in the busy centre;  its attached to a member’s club now,  but non profit making aiding homeless people into work;  there is also the added benefit of a beautiful garden.

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hayfever is something that i have never suffered from, but in the last few years i have found myself sneezing and snuffling and itchy skin, especially around this time of year.  I am not sure what causes mine, but the onset of blossom or grasses definitely is a trigger .

did you know that eating a spoonful of local honey is also meant to be a good remedy for hayfever ?  i buy the local regents park honey and it does seem to help – search for your local honey, you will be surprised to see how many of your local parks creates its own honey.   you can buy regents park honey from Melrose and Morgan.  its expensive, but then i find that most good honey is expensive.  remember to buy your own local honey though to your area for hayfever.

the natural bioflavonoid quercetin also acts as an antihistamine;  and apparently drinking nettle and chamomile tea curbs hay fever.  if you take the  supplement quercetin with more vitamin C, it improves absorption.   using happinose, a balm that you put round the tip of your nostrils really does help with a runny nose, it apparently stops the spores from entering through your nostrils, sticking to the product rather than penetrating.  you will lots of more healthy alternative balms too such as haymax.  another great place to find natural remedies is napiers – its available online and is a great source of information for help with most ailments.

french bistro

so we finally made it back to Bath to pick up our old leather armchair that we bought at easter – typically it rained all day, which made walking around this beautiful architectural city a bit of a miserable and damp trek.  however it still did not deter from its elegance and regal standing – we passed the atmospheric guildhall market, the roman baths, which we aim to visit one day and victoria park – all stunning.  we stumbled on an interesting lighting shop, that restores and renews old lights Felix, but pricey, but lights are very difficult to find. we had coffee in cafe lucca and a fab early dinner at Casanis, french bistro, but very tasty food, all before driving home again.  so it is possible to do a day trip to bath – its definitely worth it.

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photo london

if you are looking for something to do over the weekend and you love photography, then pop down to somerset house and see photo london;   its your chance to see photographs from all the early great photographers to contemporary now.  its a big sprawling exhibition, spread over several wings of the building and levels, plus an added addition in the courtyard.  think frieze art, but of photography.  i didnt manage to see everything – its a good idea to take a plan with you, and tick off where you have been, cos you can easily get lost.   you must see the Don McCullin gallery on the mezzanine level, the finsbury park photos are amazing.  book into one of the many talks with the participating photographers – I managed the Alec Soth interview, which was very interesting.  its quite pricey, but then when do you get to see so many varied photos in one swoop.



birthday kiss to my daughter

cant believe that my baby is 17 today!  its beautiful and sad – a passing of time, a transition into womanhood, a progression, a growing, its everything and yet there is so much for her to do and look forward to in the future – its almost the beginnings of adult life.

always my inspiration, my model,  my pride and joy,  my beautiful maude – i thank you for all the times you have patiently sat, ran, walked, poised for my photos!


a beautiful thought for the day

i have met so many friends through my blog, some i never knew and still have never met  – and others who were already old friends of mine . what I love are the messages of support and thanks, which always gives you the belief to continue writing.  some days I feel that I am writing for myself, but it is always a pleasure to receive words of encouragement from others.

this post is especially for a dear friend Carolyn who always reads my blog;  not only has she been a friend that has encouraged, supported, praised and influenced me in my pursuits, but is also a loving, caring and humorous person who has always been around since I started working in london.  you may remember that I posted about her beautiful pom poms in the past.    dismissing her own talent and  creativity to help others, she is totally unselfish, patient and a joy to be around.  she particularly loves my flower cards and has been so far my biggest supporter – I think she has bought every single flower card which always leads me to adding more designs.   and now i am progressing from cards to a self published  book, again championed by Carolyn – I hope to release it in the autumn – so thank you Carolyn for your never-ending  encouragement and belief in myself.