Wednesday, 28 September 2011

verona, verona .. where for art

thou Verona...my recent trip to Italy saw me taking in the sights of 2 beautiful cities and a lake!.... Verona was my base for the 5 days, fantastic location for travelling as airport is 20 minutes via shuttle bus and the bus/train station houses multiple train carriers including italia rail /eurostar and the domestic lines.
Verona was picturesque and relaxing, just what I needed to unwind, with stunning scenery, scrumptious food and warm weather it was just fabulous.
Verona is a much quieter town in comparison to Rome & Venice except when the opera season is in full voice. My hotel was sited a stones throw from the Opera di Verona which made it a fab location to get around.

During my stay I visited the house of the Capulets and the iconic balcony (recently seen in letters to Juliet)... unfortunately the walls are not covered in letters & post its now ~ lots of writing and you can now leave a note for Juliet via a "tablet/ipad" in the Capulet house!...


not far from the Capulet courtyard is a stunning square Piazza Erbe, here you can pick up some treats in the market, stop for an espresso and gaze at the amazing paintings on the buildings... as you can see its a favourite for budding artists too!

pop back soon for more detail on verona, a day on the lake, a trip to venice and fabulous food from italy!

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Next Cupcake?

Every year at this time the Christmas Gift Guides start to appear... this year it seems Next is ahead with their Christmas gift guide.... and I can say that the list for Santa has started!
Next caught onto the Cupcake craze a couple of years ago and every season they have launched a new collection. How excited was I to see a whole section dedicated to the Cupcake in this years guide... check out the cupcake gift guide here! 8 pages of treats for the cupcake fan....

I'm particularly loving the ceramic rolling pin, the tea pot, and the draught excluder (much needed in my house!)

Monday, 19 September 2011

An evening with George in Verona..

I've been back from Verona a few days, and being badgered to share some of my trip... the first being a fantastic evening in the Opera di Verona in the company of George Michael. Verona has been on my places to visit list for a while and I jumped at the opportunity to go when I was offered pre-sale tickets to see George.
Ticket secured I found a great little hotel by the Arena and 5 days in Italy was planned!.
Prior to the evening I popped into the Arena to see it, in its beautiful glory in the daylight... stunning venue a roman treat... with beautiful views both inside & out across Verona.

George's Symphonica Tour started at 9pm complete with a full orchestra and as the sun set in Verona the Opera came alive with hundreds of fans waiting for the start of the show... how excited was I to arrive and find that I had a front row seat!
First Set
1.Through
2.My Baby Just Cares For Me (Nina Simone cover)
3.Kissing A Fool
4.Understand
5.Let Her Down Easy
8.You Have Been Loved
9.Roxanne (The Police cover)
10.Brother Can You Spare A Dime
Intermission

Second Set
12.Patience
13.John & Elvis Are Dead
14.Wild Is The Wind (David Bowie cover)
15.Where I Hope You Are (new song dedicated to George's ex boyfriend Kenny)
16.You've Changed
17.True Faith
18.Love Is A Losing Game (Amy Winehouse cover) (dedicated to Amy Winehouse)
21.A Different Corner
22.Feeling Good (Nina Simone cover)
23.Amazing Play Video
25.Freedom '90
Encore 2:
26.I Remember You Play Video
27.Free Play Video

I've seen George several times over the past 25 years and I can honestly say this was the best I have seen him. He made me laugh, gave me goose bumps and mad me cry in the space of 3 hours. The set is simple, the orchestra is fantastic and George was quite phenomenal... at times its just him on a stool singing with very little accompaniment, doing what he does best.Its great to see him back at the top of his game, and looking like he is enjoying it!
An amazing evening, in a stunning setting... a perfect evening
so looking forward to the Royal Albert Hall next month!
(songs highlighted in red link to you tube clips)

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Day that changed....

the world...10 years ago today the world that we live in changed forever.



The World Trade centre was an icon of the western world, with it's destruction bought a vulnerability to all our lives.
I have been very fortunate to have visited Washington, Pennsylvania & New York, DC & Penn prior and NY before and after the attacks. The November before 9/11 I spent Thanksgiving dinner at the top of Tower 1 at the Windows of the World restaurant. Now in that place will be two infinity pools...a beautiful memorial to two iconic buildings.


The twin towers gave NY direction.It's easy to loose your bearings in a city as tall as it is wide but the 2 towers were the compass of manhattan, they guided you home. When they fell NY lost it's direction,however over the last 10 years I have seen a community build out of diversity with courage and strength. What was before predominately a business district,which closed down & became a ghost town after trading hours, has now become a community, homes for many with lots of green spaces and recreational areas. NY heart is beating once more.



So today I will pause for a moment and remember all those that lost their life on that fateful day. Their lives may be lost but they will never be forgotten.




Friday, 9 September 2011

Thighs,Teamwork & 10

I am of course referring to the game of Rugby!.. Well that's what Treats I look forward to! Today England kick off their first game in the Rugby World cup in New Zealand.
During August I got A ticket for the Twickenham game against Wales.... The best treat of the game, other than the win was the gorgeous Jonny Wilkinson in the 10 shirt... So as I soak up a little of the Italian sunshine.... Will be supporting the boys down under!..


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone. Tx

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Romeo, Romeo......

where for art thou Romeo... yes I'm off to seek Romeo in the beautiful city of Verona for a few days... A few days rest & relaxation in the Italian sunshine is on the menu, along with a train trip to Venice and the Lakes (if I don't return, it means George (aka Mr Clooney) has met me in the Italian Lakes and realised I am the lady that he has been missing all his life!) Also planned is an evening with Mr George Michael at the Opera di Verona....

off now to finish packing..... Arrivederci Tx

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Summer reads ~ chapter 2

Mmmm where shall I start... the reading list has been considerable over the past few weeks, so onto chapter 2 of my summer reads:
  • Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow ~ Claudia Carroll,  Annie & Dan are high school sweethearts, married young and are now firmly in a rut in the Irish countryside... with Dan working long hours as the local vet, Annie struggling with in laws & village life, she gets the opportunity to head to the bright lights of New York and star on Broadway... can a gap year make the heart grow fonder? they say absence does!...time will tell. Any book that transports me to New York has a head start above the rest!... loved it, made me want to jump on a plane!
  • Breakfast in Bed ~ Eleanor Moran .. if you are a foodie this is one for you!... Amber finds herself in a new job in a prestigious restaurant cooking for a chef that makes Gordan Ramsey look like a pussy cat! Oscar.. struggling to come to terms with her divorce, should she fall for the arrogant Oscar?.. and deal with a teenage daughter & ex-wife & is she over the ex husband?.. a cracking read with some fabulous food recipes thrown in...  devoured in one sitting!
  • Bad Sisters ~ Rebecca Chance... a romp of a read.. 3 estranged sisters with a deadly secret, Devon (celebrity cook - Nigellaesque) Deeley (Hollywood wag) and Maxie (politician's wife) - all have a lot to loose if the secret gets out... sibling rivalry, glamour and a rugby hottie as a husband.. what more could you ask for!.. the bonkbuster is back!... the new Jackie Collins!
  • One Day ~ David Nicholls now have to confess this has sat in my pile to read for sometime, it has been picked up many times.. but after seeing the trailer for the film I was determined to read before I saw the film... I'm so glad that I did... not the best tube read as i did sob at one point... the story of Dex & Emma over 2 decades on the 15th July.... it takes you through every emotion, from happy, to despair, you will love them both, Dex is wrong on so many levels but he will slowly melt your heart... before the making of the film I would have likened this to "The way we were"... never quite sure how the story is going to unfold... fabulous book.
  • The Summer Season ~ Julia Williams  revolving around  the lives of 3 friends in the village of Heartsease, dealing with loss, & break-ups they embark on a little guerrilla gardening and then the restoration of the local memorial garden.. can they restore their broken hearts... a heartfelt read, with some lovely historical references.... it soon has you wanting to plant from the heart!
  • Who's afraid of Mr Wolfe?... Ellie a fabulous copywriter in an Ad agency, isny so fabulous in her life, boyfriend, attitude and dress sense could all need a little work!... along comes the gorgeous Jack ( new boss and bares a passing resemblense to Heathcliff!) decides to smarten Eliie up... under much duress, Ellie embarks on the adventure, with a dotty aunt to look after and 'knicker' pitch to deliver.. it will have you laughing out loud and sniffing into a tissue at the same time.. a girl after my own heart.. complete with a brief adventure in NY!
off now to compile my reading list for September and my Italian adventure.....

Summer Reads ~ chapter 1

I use the title loosely as summer seems to have passed us by in August!... but with my daily commute my book reads have been sheer escapism... I can pretend whilst sweating on the tube, that i am sitting under a palm tree, being fanned by George Clooney, sipping cocktails and devouring my Kindle ( or that could be George!)
Whilst I have moved over to the dark side of Kindle reading, I have still purchased some books.... in particular the fabulous Meet me at the Cupcake Cafe by Jenny Colgan (complete with recipe cards!)
  • Meet me at the Cupcake Cafe ~ Jenny Colgan (I can't tell you how many people tweeted or text me to say, "saw this and thought of you!") I read this a while back, but have not got round to blogging.... Issy has grown up with her beloved Gramps who was a baker.. a inherited love of baking sees her start a cupcake cafe... through precious letters & recipes sent to her from her Gramps she sets out starting a business, not gaining the best support from her friends ( Izzy can be a bit ditzy!) she gets stuck in to prove them all wrong!... I loved this book, it has a character I could so relate to, her relationship with her Gramps was so poignant to me, and yes of course it made me cry! ( It had me at Gramps x) and lots of recipes!!...It's in the running for "Favourite book of year!"... a must for anyone who loves cupcakes or dreams of opening their own cafe!..
  • From London with Love ~ Jemma Forte.... how would you deal with life if your mum & dad were  007 and his most famous Bond girl!.. Jessica wants a life of her own .. so she heads for London where no one knows her as the Bond Girls daughter...and gets a job running for a TV company.. a great romp through London & the TV world!... sheer escapism.
  • The Beach Cafe ~ Lucy Diamond... having spent many of me teenage years on the beaches of Cornwall, this made me wanting to pack my cake tins and head down to the Cornish coast and open a cafe. Evie (the black sheep of the family) inherits the cafe from her aunt, not knowing really what she wants from life she heads down to Cornwall. Surprised by what she finds and trying to deal with a long term relationship she realises that obstacles need to be overcome!... with laugh out loud humour, perfect heros and food to dribble over the pages to... a perfect summer read.. loved it!
Pop back tomorrow for my Summer Reads ~ Chapter 2!.... I have been reading lots!

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

verona, verona .. where for art

thou Verona...my recent trip to Italy saw me taking in the sights of 2 beautiful cities and a lake!.... Verona was my base for the 5 days, fantastic location for travelling as airport is 20 minutes via shuttle bus and the bus/train station houses multiple train carriers including italia rail /eurostar and the domestic lines.
Verona was picturesque and relaxing, just what I needed to unwind, with stunning scenery, scrumptious food and warm weather it was just fabulous.
Verona is a much quieter town in comparison to Rome & Venice except when the opera season is in full voice. My hotel was sited a stones throw from the Opera di Verona which made it a fab location to get around.

During my stay I visited the house of the Capulets and the iconic balcony (recently seen in letters to Juliet)... unfortunately the walls are not covered in letters & post its now ~ lots of writing and you can now leave a note for Juliet via a "tablet/ipad" in the Capulet house!...


not far from the Capulet courtyard is a stunning square Piazza Erbe, here you can pick up some treats in the market, stop for an espresso and gaze at the amazing paintings on the buildings... as you can see its a favourite for budding artists too!

pop back soon for more detail on verona, a day on the lake, a trip to venice and fabulous food from italy!

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Next Cupcake?

Every year at this time the Christmas Gift Guides start to appear... this year it seems Next is ahead with their Christmas gift guide.... and I can say that the list for Santa has started!
Next caught onto the Cupcake craze a couple of years ago and every season they have launched a new collection. How excited was I to see a whole section dedicated to the Cupcake in this years guide... check out the cupcake gift guide here! 8 pages of treats for the cupcake fan....

I'm particularly loving the ceramic rolling pin, the tea pot, and the draught excluder (much needed in my house!)

Monday, 19 September 2011

An evening with George in Verona..

I've been back from Verona a few days, and being badgered to share some of my trip... the first being a fantastic evening in the Opera di Verona in the company of George Michael. Verona has been on my places to visit list for a while and I jumped at the opportunity to go when I was offered pre-sale tickets to see George.
Ticket secured I found a great little hotel by the Arena and 5 days in Italy was planned!.
Prior to the evening I popped into the Arena to see it, in its beautiful glory in the daylight... stunning venue a roman treat... with beautiful views both inside & out across Verona.

George's Symphonica Tour started at 9pm complete with a full orchestra and as the sun set in Verona the Opera came alive with hundreds of fans waiting for the start of the show... how excited was I to arrive and find that I had a front row seat!
First Set
1.Through
2.My Baby Just Cares For Me (Nina Simone cover)
3.Kissing A Fool
4.Understand
5.Let Her Down Easy
8.You Have Been Loved
9.Roxanne (The Police cover)
10.Brother Can You Spare A Dime
Intermission

Second Set
12.Patience
13.John & Elvis Are Dead
14.Wild Is The Wind (David Bowie cover)
15.Where I Hope You Are (new song dedicated to George's ex boyfriend Kenny)
16.You've Changed
17.True Faith
18.Love Is A Losing Game (Amy Winehouse cover) (dedicated to Amy Winehouse)
21.A Different Corner
22.Feeling Good (Nina Simone cover)
23.Amazing Play Video
25.Freedom '90
Encore 2:
26.I Remember You Play Video
27.Free Play Video

I've seen George several times over the past 25 years and I can honestly say this was the best I have seen him. He made me laugh, gave me goose bumps and mad me cry in the space of 3 hours. The set is simple, the orchestra is fantastic and George was quite phenomenal... at times its just him on a stool singing with very little accompaniment, doing what he does best.Its great to see him back at the top of his game, and looking like he is enjoying it!
An amazing evening, in a stunning setting... a perfect evening
so looking forward to the Royal Albert Hall next month!
(songs highlighted in red link to you tube clips)

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Day that changed....

the world...10 years ago today the world that we live in changed forever.



The World Trade centre was an icon of the western world, with it's destruction bought a vulnerability to all our lives.
I have been very fortunate to have visited Washington, Pennsylvania & New York, DC & Penn prior and NY before and after the attacks. The November before 9/11 I spent Thanksgiving dinner at the top of Tower 1 at the Windows of the World restaurant. Now in that place will be two infinity pools...a beautiful memorial to two iconic buildings.


The twin towers gave NY direction.It's easy to loose your bearings in a city as tall as it is wide but the 2 towers were the compass of manhattan, they guided you home. When they fell NY lost it's direction,however over the last 10 years I have seen a community build out of diversity with courage and strength. What was before predominately a business district,which closed down & became a ghost town after trading hours, has now become a community, homes for many with lots of green spaces and recreational areas. NY heart is beating once more.



So today I will pause for a moment and remember all those that lost their life on that fateful day. Their lives may be lost but they will never be forgotten.




Friday, 9 September 2011

Thighs,Teamwork & 10

I am of course referring to the game of Rugby!.. Well that's what Treats I look forward to! Today England kick off their first game in the Rugby World cup in New Zealand.
During August I got A ticket for the Twickenham game against Wales.... The best treat of the game, other than the win was the gorgeous Jonny Wilkinson in the 10 shirt... So as I soak up a little of the Italian sunshine.... Will be supporting the boys down under!..


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone. Tx

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Romeo, Romeo......

where for art thou Romeo... yes I'm off to seek Romeo in the beautiful city of Verona for a few days... A few days rest & relaxation in the Italian sunshine is on the menu, along with a train trip to Venice and the Lakes (if I don't return, it means George (aka Mr Clooney) has met me in the Italian Lakes and realised I am the lady that he has been missing all his life!) Also planned is an evening with Mr George Michael at the Opera di Verona....

off now to finish packing..... Arrivederci Tx

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Summer reads ~ chapter 2

Mmmm where shall I start... the reading list has been considerable over the past few weeks, so onto chapter 2 of my summer reads:
  • Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow ~ Claudia Carroll,  Annie & Dan are high school sweethearts, married young and are now firmly in a rut in the Irish countryside... with Dan working long hours as the local vet, Annie struggling with in laws & village life, she gets the opportunity to head to the bright lights of New York and star on Broadway... can a gap year make the heart grow fonder? they say absence does!...time will tell. Any book that transports me to New York has a head start above the rest!... loved it, made me want to jump on a plane!
  • Breakfast in Bed ~ Eleanor Moran .. if you are a foodie this is one for you!... Amber finds herself in a new job in a prestigious restaurant cooking for a chef that makes Gordan Ramsey look like a pussy cat! Oscar.. struggling to come to terms with her divorce, should she fall for the arrogant Oscar?.. and deal with a teenage daughter & ex-wife & is she over the ex husband?.. a cracking read with some fabulous food recipes thrown in...  devoured in one sitting!
  • Bad Sisters ~ Rebecca Chance... a romp of a read.. 3 estranged sisters with a deadly secret, Devon (celebrity cook - Nigellaesque) Deeley (Hollywood wag) and Maxie (politician's wife) - all have a lot to loose if the secret gets out... sibling rivalry, glamour and a rugby hottie as a husband.. what more could you ask for!.. the bonkbuster is back!... the new Jackie Collins!
  • One Day ~ David Nicholls now have to confess this has sat in my pile to read for sometime, it has been picked up many times.. but after seeing the trailer for the film I was determined to read before I saw the film... I'm so glad that I did... not the best tube read as i did sob at one point... the story of Dex & Emma over 2 decades on the 15th July.... it takes you through every emotion, from happy, to despair, you will love them both, Dex is wrong on so many levels but he will slowly melt your heart... before the making of the film I would have likened this to "The way we were"... never quite sure how the story is going to unfold... fabulous book.
  • The Summer Season ~ Julia Williams  revolving around  the lives of 3 friends in the village of Heartsease, dealing with loss, & break-ups they embark on a little guerrilla gardening and then the restoration of the local memorial garden.. can they restore their broken hearts... a heartfelt read, with some lovely historical references.... it soon has you wanting to plant from the heart!
  • Who's afraid of Mr Wolfe?... Ellie a fabulous copywriter in an Ad agency, isny so fabulous in her life, boyfriend, attitude and dress sense could all need a little work!... along comes the gorgeous Jack ( new boss and bares a passing resemblense to Heathcliff!) decides to smarten Eliie up... under much duress, Ellie embarks on the adventure, with a dotty aunt to look after and 'knicker' pitch to deliver.. it will have you laughing out loud and sniffing into a tissue at the same time.. a girl after my own heart.. complete with a brief adventure in NY!
off now to compile my reading list for September and my Italian adventure.....

Summer Reads ~ chapter 1

I use the title loosely as summer seems to have passed us by in August!... but with my daily commute my book reads have been sheer escapism... I can pretend whilst sweating on the tube, that i am sitting under a palm tree, being fanned by George Clooney, sipping cocktails and devouring my Kindle ( or that could be George!)
Whilst I have moved over to the dark side of Kindle reading, I have still purchased some books.... in particular the fabulous Meet me at the Cupcake Cafe by Jenny Colgan (complete with recipe cards!)
  • Meet me at the Cupcake Cafe ~ Jenny Colgan (I can't tell you how many people tweeted or text me to say, "saw this and thought of you!") I read this a while back, but have not got round to blogging.... Issy has grown up with her beloved Gramps who was a baker.. a inherited love of baking sees her start a cupcake cafe... through precious letters & recipes sent to her from her Gramps she sets out starting a business, not gaining the best support from her friends ( Izzy can be a bit ditzy!) she gets stuck in to prove them all wrong!... I loved this book, it has a character I could so relate to, her relationship with her Gramps was so poignant to me, and yes of course it made me cry! ( It had me at Gramps x) and lots of recipes!!...It's in the running for "Favourite book of year!"... a must for anyone who loves cupcakes or dreams of opening their own cafe!..
  • From London with Love ~ Jemma Forte.... how would you deal with life if your mum & dad were  007 and his most famous Bond girl!.. Jessica wants a life of her own .. so she heads for London where no one knows her as the Bond Girls daughter...and gets a job running for a TV company.. a great romp through London & the TV world!... sheer escapism.
  • The Beach Cafe ~ Lucy Diamond... having spent many of me teenage years on the beaches of Cornwall, this made me wanting to pack my cake tins and head down to the Cornish coast and open a cafe. Evie (the black sheep of the family) inherits the cafe from her aunt, not knowing really what she wants from life she heads down to Cornwall. Surprised by what she finds and trying to deal with a long term relationship she realises that obstacles need to be overcome!... with laugh out loud humour, perfect heros and food to dribble over the pages to... a perfect summer read.. loved it!
Pop back tomorrow for my Summer Reads ~ Chapter 2!.... I have been reading lots!