Journal Jar Q49. What’s Your Favourite Smell and What Do You Associate With It?

It’s a looooonggggg time since I’ve done a Journal Jar post, but as I’m on a mission to empty the jar (39 questions to go), I thought I’d better make a start.

I always think that your sense of smell is totally tied up with memories.

One of my newest favourite smells is Elnett hairspray. I recently bought a can of it, never having tried it before.  As soon as I sprayed it, I had the most vivid déjà vu moment of my grandmother.  I had no idea that she’d used Elnett, but I asked my mother about it and she confirmed that yes, indeed, my grandmother always used that particular hairspray.

So everytime I spray my hair at the moment, it reminds me of ‘Dabadoo’ (I couldn’t say Granny when I was little, so I called her Dabadoo, which stuck for like, ever).

Coconut oil is another favourite – because it reminds me of holidays. And related to this – the first smell of a tropical country as you disembark the plane. You can’t beat it. The heat smacks you in the face first, quickly followed by the smell – a mixture of tropical heat and aviation fuel, I think!

And freshly brewed coffee. I’ve always liked the smell of coffee, even though I’ve only relatively recently started to drink it.

As far as perfumes go, I wrote a post about my favourite fragrances back in 2011, which you can read HERE.

What’s your favourite smell, and does it bring back memories for you? I’d love to know.



Sunday Car Booty

Morning all!

Just a quick post to let you know that my Sunday car boot sale bargains are up over on my other site, here’s the linky:

Here’s a quick preview of some of today’s bargains.



As ever, just to remind you that my other blog is ‘invite only’, so if you can’t click through and you’d like to see my second hand bargains, please leave me a comment on this post (introducing yourself if I don’t already ‘know’ you), and I’ll get an invitation off to you by email straight away.

Have a fabulous and fun Sunday, and I’ll be back next week



50 Before 50: My New Project

On my 46th birthday in August 2014, I decided to make a list of 50 things I wanted to do before I was 50.

This is it.

I’ve done an introduction and a brief run through of the list in video form, but if you’d rather just read the list, scroll down this post, and you’ll find it.

I didn’t realize until I started editing this video that I’d been inadvertently advertising my husband’s estate agency on the back of my notes – my apologies, as it’s rather distracting.


1.   Do a clean / detox.

2.   Have a mammogram.

3.   Get my cholesterol checked.

4.   Run 5k.

5.   Go to a pilates class.

6.   Try meditation.



7.   Visit my friend R

8.   Once a year trip with my mum.

9.   Host a murder mystery evening.

10.   Continue birthday days out with my best friend each August.



11.   Create a signature cocktail.

12.    Plan my 50th party!

13.   Make vodka gummy bears.

14.   See three musicals or plays at the theatre.

15.   Watch every movie that’s won the Best Picture Academy Award.

16.   Go to the cinema 50 times.

17.   Try 100 different cheeses.

18.   Eat at 12 new restaurants.

19.   Go out for afternoon tea.

20.   Try 20 different types of tequila.

21.   Open a bottle of fizz with a sword.

22.   Send flowers to somebody when it isn’t a special occasion.



23.  Walk over hot coals.

24.   Go snorkelling again.

25.   Hot air balloon ride.



26.   Visit 20 towns/cities that I haven’t been to before.

27.   Visit Oxford or Cambridge.

28.  Go to a country I’ve never been to before.

29.   Go to London by myself.

30.   Visit 20 local attractions.

31.  See a live sporting event.

32.   Go to the top of the tallest building in the world.



33.  Build & decorate our cinema room

34.   Decorate lounge.

35.   Kitchen refurb.

36.   Decorate and refurb my bedroom and ensuite.



37.   Finish my Happy Book

38.   Finish my Journal Jar Questions

39.   Take a photo of our view every month for a year.

40.   Listen to all the music I own and get rid of what I don’t like any more.

41.   Keep a ‘my day in six words’ journal for two months.

42.   Complete three months of the Photo A Day challenge.

43.   Cook a recipe from a different country every month for a year.

44.  Crochet an African Flower Blanket.

45.   Crochet As You Go Stripy Blanket

46.  Crochet Ripple Blanket.



47.   Do a blogging/photography e-course.

48.   Take an emergency first aid course.



49.   Give 25 Kiva loans

50.   Give blood.

51.   Donate to 50 charities.


Yes, I know there are 51 – clearly, I can’t count!


Other links mentioned:

Journal Jar

Happy Book

Kiva – Loans that change Lives

If you want to see how I’m getting on, I’ll be keeping the list updated in the ’50 Before 50′ tab on the top menu of my blog.

Birthday Lunch


It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago, and Ashley and I went out for a celebratory lunch to The Elephant in Torquay – a lovely restaurant which, somewhat incongruously considering its location (Torquay is a sad shadow of its former Victorian self these days) has a Michelin star.

I don’t have any pictures of the interior, but the design is fab – a mix of seaside kitsch and colonial glamour.  Which sounds awful but somehow works.  We had a nice table in the window, although it was drizzling and misty outside – well, it was August in the UK, what did I expect?!

Photo 29-08-2014 13 20 47


We had the set menu, which was good value at £16.95 for three courses, accompanied by a nice bottle of white wine.  There were two choices for each course.

Photo 29-08-2014 13 41 04


To start, Ashley had mussels with crusty bread, which were delicious and plentiful, with a very flavoursome cream sauce.

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I opted for the goats cheese salad with green onion oil, which was tasty, but rather lacking in goats cheese (it was underneath the salad, rather oddly, but there wasn’t very much of it!).

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For main course we both chose the hake, which was easily the nicest fish dish I’ve eaten this year, accompanied by a side order of green beans in pesto.   As an aside, this dish prompted me to purchase some samphire later than day when I happened to see it in Tesco, as I’d enjoyed it so much on the hake, but when I cooked it, it was inedible as it was so salty.  Anybody cooked samphire – any tips?

Photo 29-08-2014 14 43 19


For pudding, Ashley chose this chocolate tart, which looked and tasted a lot better than my crap photograph would have you believe!

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I’m not a big pudding person, so I went for my usual choice when eating out: cheese and biscuits.

All washed down with a very nice bottle of Pouilly Fume.  Quite delicious.

Photo 29-08-2014 15 00 36And as a final quirky touch, the bill comes with a stick of seaside rock.

Going out for lunch with Ashley on a weekday felt really decadent, and was a really nice birthday treat.  Unfortunately, the ensuing walk around the harbour and the shops gave me hideous blisters as I’d worn a thoroughly unsuitable pair of shoes – car to bar shoes, as my friend calls them!


Life In List Form | Things To Do In Autumn

Oh, I do love a list.  Way back when, I did a series of list-based posts entitled Friday 5, and I used to really enjoy writing them.  So I thought I’d start a new series – and here it is: Life In List Form.

Today’s subject is things I want to do this autumn, although it feels a bit silly to be talking about autumn when I’m writing this with the sunshine pouring in through the window and the outside temperature nudging 23C, but I’m sure it will be a-changing all too soon.  The evenings are certainly drawing in now.

  • Reinstate Sunday family walks.
  • Go and see fireworks on Bonfire Night
  • Paint nails in greys and browns and deep berry colours.
  • Embrace soup making (and eating) again – I’ve missed it over the summer.
  • Buy new tights in bright colours.
  • Hot chocolate in front of a good movie.
  • Homemade gifts for Christmas? Start to think about these.
  • Cosy Saturday afternoons on the sofa crocheting.
  • Pick blackberries and make blackberry jam.
  • Pick sloes and make sloe gin. Oh yeah.

What are your favourite things to do in Autumn?

Video: Empties – Skincare & Make-Up

Morning, all!

Hope you all managed to get over to my Facebook page and give me a ‘like’ – I know that Facebook had some major server problems on the same night that I put my post up (hope my new page didn’t cause that, LOL!) but I think that’s all resolved now, so do pop on over if you haven’t done yet. I’m going to be a doing a big giveaway over  on Facebook in the next couple of weeks, so there’s another reason, if you needed one, to go and have a looksee!

Anyway, today I have empties for you – products I’ve used up with mini reviews.  Enjoy!


Just a quickie:

For some reason, some people are having a problem getting onto my new Facebook page – I can’t figure out what the issue is, so sorry.

The correct web address for the page is:

If you can’t click through, the only thing I can suggest at the moment is to copy and paste the link.

In the meantime, I’ll investigate further.

Apologies for any problems! x