Thursday, 29 March 2012

Spot the difference...

The idea of individuality is drummed into us in all aspects of our lives, especially that of our personal fashion style. So, turning up to work or an event and discovering one of your pals is sporting the same frock can often leave you feeling embarrassed, frustrated or even flattered. Whether it's friendly intuition, similar styles or pure coincidence that led you to pick the same ensemble, you're better off just rolling with it, rather than winding yourself up with the "I should have chosen that red blouse instead" thought process that you may naturally reach for upon first sight of your fashion double.

Me on the other hand, I'm not too bothered about who wore it best, but I feel safe in the knowledge that my friends like what I'm wearing - because they are wearing it too! I'm all for individuality, but there's something quite comforting about having a similar style to your closest girlfriends, as it confirms your own beliefs that you're on the right track in the fashion stakes.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Luck of the Irish...

With a strong Irish background, St Paddy's Day is always big in our household, and this year was no different! So, on the 13th March, in memory of my Irish grandad's birthday, we headed down to the Royal Albert Hall to celebrate the Dubliner's 50th anniversary. But, it wasn't without drama - I rushed from work to catch an early train and stacked it right across the pavement, winding myself and scratching my phone. I was then so shaken by the time I got on, I asked for a single instead of a return and ended up forking out double for my journey! Then, after an hour in the cab from Liverpool Street, our cabbie somehow managed to get lost somewhere around Hyde Park, and we arrived ten minutes late to the concert. Ordinarily this wouldn't be a problem, but when we rushed through the doors and up the stairs, we soon realised why we weren't allowed in during their performance - we were so close to the front, we were practically on stage with them! But, a few glasses of wine and pint of Guinness later, we were in full swing of The Irish Rover and Whiskey In The Jar! And, my excited dad was beside himself when he met one of the singers after the show - he was like a teenage girl meeting Harry Styles!

Then, it was on to the real celebrations on Saturday! I took mum out for early Mother's Day manicures and then we met the Treacy clan down at the Mill Hotel. Sipping my lime and soda water I noticed something cute and fluffy out of the corner of my eye - an 11-week old puppy! I didn't know the owner, but we all had cuddles with little Buster! 

Later that evening it was on to Sudbury Town to catch up with my pals. It was a night of jokes, giggling, exchanging mutual appreciation of One Direction, and escaping the God awful smells coming from Andy Jones! And, I got a "last resort" marriage proposal, too - if Adam doesn't find anyone better in the next five years, I'm in!

This weekend has been a little on the quiet side in comparison. I've discovered Pinterest, which, in a matter of hours I've become addicted to! And, mum and I added a little glamour to our weekly walk. So, instead of shaking my booty to old school r&b, this week I'll be settling down to watch the Voice in my pyjamas - rock and roll!

Pinteresting ideas...

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Walk that walk...

Ready, set, go...

Three weeks into my training for the Moonwalk and I'm feeling pretty good about my progress so far. Kicking things off with a 5-mile hike around Great Cornard, taking in the local countryside with my dad for company and tracking our route as we went. Next, it was my mum that got roped into stomping over Friars meadows, all the way to Long Melford and back - which was a fantastic achievement - walking 10k in two hours, in the wind and rain. I'd rather have been watching One Tree Hill in my pyjamas, but I felt really proud of our efforts by the time we arrived back at number 89.

This week I haven't covered quite as much ground, but opted for a more scenic route instead. Making the trip to Clapham for an over-due catch up with my bessie, Charlotte - we decided to make the most of the glorious weather and headed for Battersea Park. After a couple of laps of the park, we were feeling peckish and headed for some pub grub and a refreshing shandy - not exactly diet food, but it certainly did the trick!

Next week I'm hoping to trek for around 8-10 miles - I wonder who will volunteer to be my training buddy...

Dipdive | Beautiful Movements Blog

Dipdive | Beautiful Movements Blog

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

American Tale (part 1) ...

In May 2009, my friend and I decided to embark on an amazing journey across the USA, and I recently stumbled across my journal from those exciting three months. Here's a little snippet into our fantastic travelling experience...

So, we arrived! After months of planning and not really believing our own hype, we finally made it to the Windy City. After an eight-hour flight we were tired and restless, but managed to stay up fairly late before going to sleep. After all, it was 2am in England and we just couldn't fight it any longer!

The hostel was clean, safe and very central. They absolutely love cream over there - they have whipped cream butter, half milk/half cream and when we asked for a regular ice cream, it turned out to be more like a tub! We ventured to Navy Pier - went on a boat tour of the skyline, and then we walked the Magnificent Mile - surrounded by Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Tiffany! Of course, being on a strict budget meant we could only look and not touch. 

We decided to see the skyline from a different view point and bought a sun and stars ticket up to the top of Hancock Observatory - and seeing the city by night was absolutely breath taking. We then rolled up to the Hard Rock Cafe for a couple of beers - it was hilarious that the two English girls were drinking bottles of Bud Light and the two guys next to us were sipping fruity cocktails!

We tucked into a slice of pizza pie at Gino's - which turned out to be a little disappointing when Isy found a questionable black curly hair in hers!

After four days in bustling Chicago we hopped on to a Greyhound bus, left our hairy Canadian room mates behind and made our way to Louisville to tuck into Southern fried chicken washed down with some whiskey. We arrived quite late in Kentucky and checked into a cheap motel. The food portions were certainly super-sized, but our backpacks were so heavy, I think we burned off any extra cals we were taking on. It was much more relaxed than they city buzz of Chicago and the locals were really friendly. We decided to go along to the Slugger museum, to learn about the creation of the baseball bat - but, we weren't really too interested in how they were made - we just wanted our free mini slugger - well worth the ten dollar entry fee! We started feeling a little homesick, so we couldn't resist going to a "British" pub, where the eccentric barman befriended us, and I got very excited with talk of American Idol!

After a brief stay, it was on to Nashville - and after surviving another bus trip we made it to Tennessee and headed straight out for a huge portion of Southern fried food and a jug of Sangria! Then, it was on to some honky tonk bar, complete with cowboy hats on the ceiling, where a honky tonk band were belting out country classics. Isy found the fact that they seriously dressed up as cowboys hysterical! Our hostel was a little weird - a little hippy-like and a bit too "open" for my liking! 

We definitely had our fill of toe-tapping tunes after a few days in the country music capital, and it was up early to catch a bus to Memphis to visit the King! We'd had a great time in Nashville - we'd gone on a strange boat cruise, with a buffet and live band - it was really beautiful, but full of golden oldies and Christian couples. So, after a tiring journey to Memphis, we waddled along the street with our backpacks on and stumbled across the "best burger bar in town"! We were so hungry we practically inhaled it! The hostel was lovely - really clean and we even had our own room - but, we had to do a chore each day to earn our keep! 

We checked out the famous Beale Street - which was brimming with local, live bands in each bar. The next day we headed over to Graceland (which I was secretly really excited about - I mean who doesn't love a bit of Elvis!) it was bizarre, but in a very quirky way. And, it was actually quite emotional to stand next to his grave. 

Now, I'm a bit of a plain Jane when it comes to food - but I took it upon myself to at least try a few new things, like grits - which tasted like crunchy porridge. We also munched on some "biscuits" - which are actually scones that are eaten with sausages and a creamy gravy!
By the end of our stay we were ready to move on to the next location, and luckily, Alabama was only a short four-hour bus ride away, and we were treating ourselves to a cheap hotel. But, that didn't exactly go to plan, when our bus broke down in the middle of nowhere for five hours! We weren't brave enough to use the toilet on the bus, and the temperature was scorching - but, no one complained. In fact, one passerby even stopped to bring us snacks, drinks and cigarettes! Can you imagine that ever happening in Britain!

So, after nine, painfully long hours, we were desperate for the loo and starving hungry - but we were relieved to have the luxury of a double bed each and, a swimming pool! Which, evidently, was the coldest pool I've ever been in - and after psyching myself up for ten minutes, I eventually got in and soon came to the conclusion that swimming didn't actually help! So, we chilled out in our room, watched trashy American soaps, washed our handful of belongings and caught up on come much needed sleep. 

Sunday, 4 March 2012


Family bonding...

In a bid to spend some quality time together, the Treacys decided to have a little brainstorm and come up with some group activities to embark on. After a few suggestions, we discovered that horse-riding was out of the question, as dad is allergic and badminton was definitely off the cards since the last time we went, my own team mate (mum) smacked me around the head with her racket in order to make the shot! Ouch!

So, after much deliberation, we finally agreed on heading to the local bowling alley and really get into the swing of things on a Friday night. And, it wasn't long until word got around, and the Pengelly's had jumped on the bowling bandwagon. I wasn't sure if it would be a giggle or a challenge, with a competitive dad already claiming that he'd be using his left hand for the game to spice things up! And, after three rounds of nil points and feeling quite at home in the gutter, I finally started upping my game and competing with the big boys! Three games later and my team mates were complaining of aching butt cheeks and strained arms, so we called it at night, with the prospect of a 'Trengelly' trophy spurring us on for the next match.

The next day, we were heading into the heart of Romford for a surprise baby shower. With only a month to go until her due date, the shock of twenty people shouting "surprise" at you, might not have been the brightest idea - but luckily Kate's waters stayed in tact for another day!

The day was filled with red velvet cupcakes decorated in baby bottle candles, pin the dummy on the baby, guess what's in the nappy and taste what's in the jar games. Followed by present opening, buffet and copious amounts of tea.

Luckily, I was able to burn off all those extra calories with a 10k walk on Sunday, in preparation for the MoonWalk in May! By which time, there will be a new addition to the family and hopefully, a new trophy to my name, too!