Saturday, 31 May 2014

May Happiness

Five things which made me smile this month...
1. Completing BEDM again. Okay, I probably cheated a bit, sometimes posting stuff a day late but if you look back, I’ve managed to find something tenuous and rambling to say each and every day.
Blog Every Day in May

2. A tasty treat at Selwood Steam Rally. Wonder if you could make a living from running vintage tea shops at steam rallies?

Cream tea at Selwood Steam Rally

3. All the lovely blog comments from you wonderful readers out there. I know I'm really behind but I am going to reply to each and every one of you!

4. Such lovely things said about this little corner of the t’interweb – Jenny from Sunny Sweet Pea, Katie from Hook Line and Sink Her and Michelle from Life Outside London.

5. Booking a ticket to the South West Blog Social in Exeter next Saturday where I shall hopefully be meeting up with some fabulous ladies – Michelle, Angela, Chelsea, I’m looking at you! :-)
South West Blog Social

What little things made you happy this month?

#BEDM Day 31 - You Made It!

Day 31 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

Woop woop!
Yep for the third time I've successfully managed to come up with some sort of rubbish tenuously-related to each day's theme every day for a whole month.

He's got nothing to do with completing the BEDM challenge but what a fine specimen of a beak he is...

I've enjoyed nosying into everyone else's posts (although I admit, I am rather behind on my blog reading) and I hope you've all enjoyed my random mutterings.

Some of my favourite posts were...

Day 23 - Date Night (the tale of how I met Andrew)
Day 21 - Workspace (a veritable menagerie of beasties)
Day 20 - Being Adventurous (how one girl went to New York abroad on her own aged 19)
Day 14 - Home Sweet Home (a nosy around my kitchen)
Day 13 - Fashion, Beauty and Grooming (my love letter to Vaseline)
Day 8 - Local History Month (where the nursery rhyme 'Jack and Jill' all started)
Day 1 - What Is Your Blog All About? (what I was doing on May 1st!)

Just because BEDM is over though, doesn't mean it's all going quiet round here; last year I said I'd go back to posting two or three times a week yet somehow since March 2013 I've managed to rack up 428 posts! I'm not really sure what about...

Anyway, I'll pop the kettle on, help yourself to some cake and feel free to stick around if you fancy it (there's lots more to come in this little bloggy space over the next few months!)

Friday, 30 May 2014

Thou Shall Have A Fishie...

For Andrew’s birthday the other week, we went out for a meal with both sets of parents. We usually head to a local pub or somewhere similar but this year we decided to do something a little bit different and went to The Scallop Shell, a fish and chip restaurant based at a local farm shop (White Row Farm Shop) about 15 miles away.
The Scallop Shell Beckington
The Scallop Shell Beckington
The Scallop Shell’s ethos is to provide customers with the freshest fish available and you can sit down with squirty tomato sauce and a fork or you can take the food away to eat elsewhere. We decided to sit down with all the family and arrived about 6pm. It was pretty busy and to begin with, we weren’t sure if we'd get a table (there was 7 of us!) but a couple of other people had just finished so we pulled some tables together and found some seats.
The Scallop Shell Beckington Ethos

The Scallop Shell Beckington
They have a standard menu displayed on the board with all the usual fishy favourites such as cod, fishcakes and haddock, and then in the middle of the main counter is literally the ‘catch of the day’ – all fresh fish delivered from various seaside towns across the UK that morning. The menu changes each day and when we were there, you had a choice of John Dory Fillet, Dover Sole Fillet, Cornish Plaice Fillet, Wild Tiger Prawns, Falmouth Bay Line Caught Mackerel and Hand Dived Isle of Skye Scallops,. The only meat option on the menu is Somerset Hamburger which I thought about getting but then plumped for Haddock instead (what a shame, we'll just have to go back again...).
The Scallop Shell Beckington Menu

The Scallop Shell Beckington Fresh Fish
Between the 7 of us we managed to try: Cod, Haddock, Plaice, Mackerel, a kids meal of Fish Chunks and the Somerset Hamburger. Both me and Andrew had the haddock which came with chunky potato chips, a lemon and was garnished with parsley. Some of the meals come with tartare sauce; mine didn’t but the tartare sauce tubs with the other meals were big enough to share round everyone who wanted a dip.
The Scallop Shell Beckington Mackerel and Chips

The Scallop Shell Beckington Fish Chunks and Chips
The haddock was pretty darn good, completely boneless (always a bonus), with fish that just flaked ever-so-gently and a batter than was just right – not too crispy and not too soggy. All the food is served in boxes and because the chips are chunky, when you first open the box it doesn’t look like a huge portion but when you start eating, it’s actually massive and I couldn’t even finish mine, although Andrew was more than happy to mop up mine (and everyone else's...) leftovers.
The Scallop Shell Beckington Haddock and Chips

The Scallop Shell Beckington

The Scallop Shell Beckington
For dessert, the only option on the menu is ice cream but after a gigantic portion of fish, you probably won’t have room for anything much bigger anyway. I had a Clotted Cream one from Purbeck Ice Cream and very nice it was too.
The Scallop Shell Beckington Ice Cream
The Scallop Shell is open late all year round til 8.30pm (and 9pm in July and August) which makes it perfect for heading there after work. It’s a shame it’s not directly on our way home, but on the other hand, that’s probably a good thing because otherwise we’d spend a fortune in there!

#BEDM Day 30 - Talent

Day 30 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

Elizabeth’s prompt for today is Talent – tell us what make you awesome, not usually an easy task as it doesn't feel natural to kind of 'big' yourself up!
Me being silly
 But in the spirit of today's theme, I'll give it a go.
So, I am awesome because…
I can remember lots and lots of random crap.
I’m quite happy to sit behind the wheel of both a modern lorry and vintage lorry and give them a spin.
You want your life organised? I’m your gal.
My cakes might not look pretty but I’ve been told they’re darn tasty.
Lists, lists and more lists, I can make a list out of anything.
Give me something to find out or research and I’m one happy bunny.
If you want a job doing, it’ll be done, I don’t give up easily!
What makes you awesome? 

Thursday, 29 May 2014

#BEDM Day 29 - Wishlist

Day 29 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

Back when I worked in my local library, we had several customers who would regularly order the latest bestsellers and things from the Richard and Judy list. Part of the job was to process books as they arrived, putting them out on the reservation shelf ready for collection.

What this actually meant in practice though was that we unpacked lovely shiny new books from their boxes, oohed and ahhed over each one in turn looking to see if we’d like it and then made a note to keep our eyes peeled for it once it had come back from going out to all the customers.

Consequently, I (and all the other staff, I’m sure) ended up with a mammoth list of books we’d like to read (almost 300!). Although I’ve had a GoodReads account for a few years, I used to keep my list on an Excel spreadsheet and only added books online once I’d actually read them. The other day though, it suddenly occurred to me that GoodReads had a ‘Want to Read’ function – I know I’d seen it on there and for some completely random reason, I’d been ignoring the fact that it would be a helluva lot more convenient to store my ‘want to read’ list online.
Goodreads Want to Read List

 So over the last few days, I’ve been swapping my gigantic list of titles from my traditional spreadsheet over to my online ‘Want to Read’ list. I’ve already listed about 200 books but I’ve still got a fair few more to add (and my list keeps growing, because I keep seeing things I’d like to read on Jane’s list!).

 If you’re on GoodReads, feel free to add me as a friend so you can take a nosy at what’s on my list!

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

#BEDM Day 28 - Share The Blog Love

Day 28 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

I seem to be sharing the blog love rather a lot recently!

So today, here's five blogs I've recently added to my Bloglovin feed...

Two Days the Same
Two Days the Same Blog
Two Days the Same is the brainchild of Sarah (from Sarah Rooftops) and is a year long project - each month Sarah and a guest blogger take a photo a day and then Sarah puts them together on the blog. It's really interesting to see how different (and equally how similar) some of the pictures are!
(plus you really need to follow Two Days the Same as in September, I'm the guest blogger!)

Sophie Louise Anne
Sophie Louise Anne Blog
I think I found Sophie through Michelle's Life Outside London blog and straight away she made me smile with her everyday language and random musings.

The Dusty Attic
The Dusty Attic Blog
Anna is a fellow BEDM-er and a very good job she's doing at it as well! I've enjoyed reading her take on each day's topic plus her crafting adventures.

A Little Life
A Little Life Blog
A Little Life is based in North West Wales and although it's run by a mystery blogger (I can't find her name!) it's full of crafts, gardening and travel adventures.

The Little Fox Den
 The Little Fox Den Blog
I'm not really sure how I stumbled across The Little Fox Den but any blog that allows me to have a nosy into someone's everyday life is a win with me!

The Midweek Hop - Drivin' In My Car

Three music videos on a theme...
(inspired by Desmond Carrington's 'The Music Goes Round')

This weeks theme is...Drivin' In My Car
Inspired by the news that Google are to start producing self-driving cars - I'm not entirely convinced that's a car I'd want to be sitting in!

1. Drive My Car by The Beatles

'Drive My Car' was never released as a single but is from the 1965 album, 'Rubber Soul'.

2. Fun, Fun, Fun by The Beach Boys

'Fun, Fun, Fun' was released in March 1964 but actually failed to make the chart in the UK!

3. Car Wash by Rose Royce

'Car Wash' entered the chart on 25th December 1976 reaching Number 9.
Happy listening!

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

#BEDM Day 27 - National Barbecue Week

Day 27 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

Hidden away in a corner of our back garden, we actually have a purpose-built barbecue shelter - in 4 and half years living there though, I think it's only been used a handful of times.

If it ever stops raining for long enough, I've already bookmarked a few recipes to try from around and about the t'interweb...
 Barbecue food
 Source: BBC Good Food
Barbecue food
Source: BBC Good Food 
Barbecue food
 Source: BBC Good Food

Halloumi and Shallot Skewers
Barbecue food
Source: Good Housekeeping

Have you managed to have any barbecues yet this year?

This (Long) Weekend at the Duckpond

We have mostly been...

Exhibiting - Andrew's lorry at Selwood Steam Rally over the weekend. We had a weekend of sunshine and showers; I managed to take a few pictures of the exhibits but realised when I got home, I'd taken no shots of his actual lorry!
Vintage Cars at Selwood Steam Rally

Vintage Cars at Selwood Steam Rally
Winning - a bra in a raffle (which is not really as dodgy as it sounds, although it's probably pretty close). A last minute invite from my friend M on Friday evening saw me heading into Bath for a Bluebella party (their tagline is 'Lingerie and Love Stuff') and one of the prizes in the raffle was this gorgeous bra, I appeared to be the only one there who was the right size and luckily I won it!

Bluebella Bra
Stumbling - upon a 1940s vintage tea shop at the steam rally. Delicious cake and proper tea served in china cups (click here for more cake pics). As the Python sketch goes, "well, I never expected that!"
1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally
Browsing - opposite the steam rally is a car boot sale that's open Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays. So we popped over the road to have a look round each day - not too successful though (I think the weather put a lot of people off), the sum total of our purchases was two cardigans, one skirt and some radius gauges (some kind of engineering tools, I'm told...).
What did you get up to at the weekend?

Monday, 26 May 2014

#BEDM Day 26 - Bank Holiday Fun!

Day 26 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

 Our bank holiday weekend was spent at a little steam rally about 15 miles away over the border into Wiltshire. It's quite a good one but is only really a small fish in the steam rally world (the big one is the Great Dorset Steam Fair at the end of August) so we were quite suprised to stumble upon a 1940s vintage tea shop in amongst all the marquees and stalls!

Needless to say, that's where we took our afternoon tea each day...

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

1940s Vintage Tea Shop at Selwood Steam Rally

Andrew's been to steam rallies all his life and has never actually seen a place like it, there's usually only the standard burger vans and catering stalls selling the same old fare.

Essentially a steam rally is a celebration of nostalgia, vehicles and all things vintage so fair play to whoever was running that stall, I think it's a fabulous idea!

Sunday, 25 May 2014

#BEDM Day 25 - Best Thing About Childhood

Day 25 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge

Well co-incidentially, I think the best thing about childhood is also the best thing about being an adult...

Childhood Freedom


As a child though, it's a completely different type of freedom - the whole world and everything it has to offer awaits you and other than where your next meal is coming from, there's not really much to worry about!

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