Tuesday, 29 January 2013

New York baking bits ...

I have a list of places that I go to or things that i do without fail every time that I visit New York... It doesn't matter what else I have discovered new, my core list has to be met.... Two homestores that I have to go to are williams-sonoma and Crate & Barrel , sited near each other and a short walk from my hotel these were two places that I visited on my first afternoon in New York.  Prior to my departure I had devoured both websites and created and pinned a wish list of must haves!...
Both stores were beautifully staged and a gift for any baker at Christmas...
Williams-Sonoma (E59th st) windows key feature was peppermint bark & candy cane which I just fell in love with. The store just smelled of Christmas, hot chocolate, peppermint & eggnog!... I could have just moved in!... It's so easy to get carried away in here and absorb all my luggage allowance, however only a couple of extras were added to my list!
The peppermint bark recipe on the iPad looks delicious... A must try for next year! Along with peppermint bark, key trends for WS were gingerbread houses, eggnog pancakes, popcorn - home make & multiple flavours, and sea salted caramel hot chocolate ... A lot of which found home in my suitcase for a trip across the Atlantic!
Crate and Barrel (Madison ave/59th) is a home store, their store design is lots of glass, light and staged home spaces to entice all. Their Christmas marketing in the stores revolved around the 12 days of Christmas theme, but with a baking twist.... chalked across a number of blackboards. I loved the visual displays, the bakers twine found a home in my suitcase, along with the candy cane sugar, a

host of Christmas decorations and a few other home treats. I can't was lyrically enough about how great these two stores are, the sales teams are knowledgable,and friendly .. I never leave NY without a bag of treats from each... ... 

Sunday, 27 January 2013

New York adventure....

I know that it's been a while since I returned, but I am finally in a position to share my New York adventures from December. Apologies in advance for the numerous posts to some over the next couple of weeks but I have lots to share!.... Instead of breaking my week down by days I'm going to share by themes, and favourites as I packed lots in my days!
I left London on a cold and cloudy morning ...
And arrived in New York a mild and overcast afternoon.... 

 After dumping bags at the hotel I took to the sidewalk to explore and soak up the noise, atmosphere and New York life. I love New York for many things, but that first glimpse of the New York skyline 
as you drive in from the airport and cross one of the bridges always fills me with joy. 

This along with the honking horns, sirens and the smoke billowing funnels on the sidewalks... You cannot escape the feeling that you are in the movies....

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Ballet & burgers

My friend and I usually try to do something together as a Christmas treat. For the last few years the ballet has formed part of my holiday season activities. Normally it is some form of The Nutcracker, however with this already part of my New York adventures I wanted to do something different in London. This year I booked to take us to see Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. Matthew Bourne is famous for his contemporary ballets so I knew that it would not be anything traditional!
The ballet had a very gothic feel from the start and was a world away from the Disney version!... The opening act was amazing which featured a puppet baby which was just simply brilliant. The dancers we spellbinding.

As ever with Matthew's writing there was a fantastic twist which bought Sleeping Beauty into the 21st century and present day on waking!.... It was Sleeping Beauty mets True Blood/Twilight... 
We had a fabulous evening and avidly wait for Matthew's next fable!
As with every trip to the ballet we usually accompany by a trip for Byrons Burgers!.... The tradition continued this year with a trip to Byron's in Islington.... Perfect burgers, beer and then a treat at the Ballet.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Festive foodies....

I am the first to say I am not the easiest person to buy for, early last year I was gifted a voucher towards a cookery class at the Waitrose Cookery School .Having been on a couple of courses previously my friend knew that I would love this. After much deliberation I booked on to the "festive food gifts" morning, which was a couple of weeks before Christmas.
On a cold and wet Friday morning this was a welcome treat. There was a lively festive atmosphere which stayed throughout the morning and certainly banished the cold & grey outside. The support team were great and the coffee, it mince pies and treats throughout the morning added to the holiday feel.
 

Eleni was our chef of the day, she was very patient, knowledgable and shared in our fun throughout the morning. Our recipes for the morning were:
  • Orange & Apricot Chutney
  • Salted chocolate ganache logs
  • Gingerbread biscuits
  • Orange & sour cherry fudge 

I learnt lots throughout the morning and would definitely tackle these recipes at home again. had a great morning and the treated went down a treat in the office!...
I really enjoy this cookery school, and looks like a lot of other chefs do too!... Love the messages on the stairwell pictures.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Festive spice ...

During December my diary was a little busy filled with festive fun, one evening was spent at the fabulous Piccadilly Theatre for some seasonal spice.
Yes I am referring to the new West end musical "Viva Forever"This musical is based around the songs from the Spice Girls.... As you know I am a huge fan of musical theatre, to me the main objective of any musical should bring a smile to your face, make you sing out loud and feel the need to dance in the aisles, and I need to say Viva Forever ticks all the boxes. Ignore the theatre luvvies and critics, this is a fun filled frolic from start to finish. You will know every song, and I defy anyone not to want to "Spice up their Life" by the end!
Written by Jennifer Saunders, you will feel the "ab fab-ness" of  the show. The send up of the reality musical show is just great, with fun characatures of the Simon /Sharon roles.

This musical takes you back to that feel when you first saw that "wannabee" video ... This is perfect for girls night out, I guarantee that after a couple of wines in the interval you will be dancing in the aisles... complete with all the spice girl actions...

Monday, 21 January 2013

Normal service to resume soon ....

Sincere apologies for the lack of blogging of late, i have a few reasons!...
  1. its stupid season at work trying to get the year end counted and closed, long days and weekends.
  2. what spare time I've had I have been trawling through my 1,000 photos taken whilst in New York ... Formatting ready to share.
  3. It's been too cold to motivate myself to sit at the PC, when the onesie and duvet have been the better option on the sofa!
  4. Been trying to find a solution to blogging on the IPad with photos... Hopefully this has been solved!.. This is my test post... Tried Blogger but the picture upload is not great.
Winter struck with a vengeance last week, so commuting and day to day life has been a little bit more challenging... Hopefully the thaw is on its way, and normal service can resume soon....

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Christmas catch-up...

I know its January but I didn't want the month to pass without sharing a few pictures from Christmas. Christmas is quiet for me, its just a day as I work Boxing day which is usually a little hectic.
I'm not sure where the time went on the run up to Christmas, as it felt that i just got back from new York and then it was Christmas eve. After a whirlwind of delivering presents, I ended up at my last stop and spent Christmas eve with my brother & family .. This has turned into a bit of a a tradition.
Christmas day was spent at home, lazing in my Onesie, cooking Christmas dinner and chilling on the sofa watching Christmas TV! Christmas Day did involve a little baking... Christmas morning muffins & my nans special seasonal sausage rolls! I had a very chilled and relaxing day which was lovely.

Santa was very kind to me this year with lots of lovely pressies... there were variations of themes threading through my gifts...
"Fashionista" which included Mulberry gloves, Ugg slippers, Mcqueen scarf & Michael Kors document holder & DVF book
" New Yorker" ~ New york pj's, scarf, Kenneth Cole NY mug, & coffee,Tiffany treats, and New years eve DVD.


"Bond Girl" ~ License to thrill notebook from Smythson, Daniel Craig bond collection and martini!
"Macaron mania" ~ Macaron kit, Lauduree baking book, Macaron bag charm, macaron coffee and paris notebook.
Along with these i got some other lovely gifts which included Afternoon tea at Claridges for later this year..

Boxing day saw me and Florence driving into Central London for a 7am start, where we were greeted by people queueing around the block for the start of the Selfridges sale.... the morning started on the balcony overlooking the handbag hall along with the TV crews to record the first customers through the doors!...

after a busy day it was time to drive home and chill out on the sofa Boxing day Bubble & squeak with cold meats & pickle!... perfect Boxing day dinner.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

shopping,seduction & Selfridges!

Over 100 years ago one man changed the way that London and the world would shopped forever... I am of course talking about Gordon Selfridge.
Tonight see's the start of the drama series titled "Mr Selfridge" which tells the story of Harry Gordon Selfridge and how he built his empire at 400 Oxford St. ( which at the time was deemed to be the wrong end of Oxford Street!)... Oh how things have changed!
Regarded as a retail genius 9-5 and a fool after hours he built something which is iconic, exciting and still embraces his ethos 103 years later.
For more information check out the Selfridges heritage site here or a great article here
Looking forward to sitting down with my Selfridges coffee to watch the start of this series at 9pm tonight...
You can also follow Mr Selfridge on twitter @MrSelfridge
Enjoy x

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

New York baking bits ...

I have a list of places that I go to or things that i do without fail every time that I visit New York... It doesn't matter what else I have discovered new, my core list has to be met.... Two homestores that I have to go to are williams-sonoma and Crate & Barrel , sited near each other and a short walk from my hotel these were two places that I visited on my first afternoon in New York.  Prior to my departure I had devoured both websites and created and pinned a wish list of must haves!...
Both stores were beautifully staged and a gift for any baker at Christmas...
Williams-Sonoma (E59th st) windows key feature was peppermint bark & candy cane which I just fell in love with. The store just smelled of Christmas, hot chocolate, peppermint & eggnog!... I could have just moved in!... It's so easy to get carried away in here and absorb all my luggage allowance, however only a couple of extras were added to my list!
The peppermint bark recipe on the iPad looks delicious... A must try for next year! Along with peppermint bark, key trends for WS were gingerbread houses, eggnog pancakes, popcorn - home make & multiple flavours, and sea salted caramel hot chocolate ... A lot of which found home in my suitcase for a trip across the Atlantic!
Crate and Barrel (Madison ave/59th) is a home store, their store design is lots of glass, light and staged home spaces to entice all. Their Christmas marketing in the stores revolved around the 12 days of Christmas theme, but with a baking twist.... chalked across a number of blackboards. I loved the visual displays, the bakers twine found a home in my suitcase, along with the candy cane sugar, a

host of Christmas decorations and a few other home treats. I can't was lyrically enough about how great these two stores are, the sales teams are knowledgable,and friendly .. I never leave NY without a bag of treats from each... ... 

Sunday, 27 January 2013

New York adventure....

I know that it's been a while since I returned, but I am finally in a position to share my New York adventures from December. Apologies in advance for the numerous posts to some over the next couple of weeks but I have lots to share!.... Instead of breaking my week down by days I'm going to share by themes, and favourites as I packed lots in my days!
I left London on a cold and cloudy morning ...
And arrived in New York a mild and overcast afternoon.... 

 After dumping bags at the hotel I took to the sidewalk to explore and soak up the noise, atmosphere and New York life. I love New York for many things, but that first glimpse of the New York skyline 
as you drive in from the airport and cross one of the bridges always fills me with joy. 

This along with the honking horns, sirens and the smoke billowing funnels on the sidewalks... You cannot escape the feeling that you are in the movies....

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Ballet & burgers

My friend and I usually try to do something together as a Christmas treat. For the last few years the ballet has formed part of my holiday season activities. Normally it is some form of The Nutcracker, however with this already part of my New York adventures I wanted to do something different in London. This year I booked to take us to see Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. Matthew Bourne is famous for his contemporary ballets so I knew that it would not be anything traditional!
The ballet had a very gothic feel from the start and was a world away from the Disney version!... The opening act was amazing which featured a puppet baby which was just simply brilliant. The dancers we spellbinding.

As ever with Matthew's writing there was a fantastic twist which bought Sleeping Beauty into the 21st century and present day on waking!.... It was Sleeping Beauty mets True Blood/Twilight... 
We had a fabulous evening and avidly wait for Matthew's next fable!
As with every trip to the ballet we usually accompany by a trip for Byrons Burgers!.... The tradition continued this year with a trip to Byron's in Islington.... Perfect burgers, beer and then a treat at the Ballet.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Festive foodies....

I am the first to say I am not the easiest person to buy for, early last year I was gifted a voucher towards a cookery class at the Waitrose Cookery School .Having been on a couple of courses previously my friend knew that I would love this. After much deliberation I booked on to the "festive food gifts" morning, which was a couple of weeks before Christmas.
On a cold and wet Friday morning this was a welcome treat. There was a lively festive atmosphere which stayed throughout the morning and certainly banished the cold & grey outside. The support team were great and the coffee, it mince pies and treats throughout the morning added to the holiday feel.
 

Eleni was our chef of the day, she was very patient, knowledgable and shared in our fun throughout the morning. Our recipes for the morning were:
  • Orange & Apricot Chutney
  • Salted chocolate ganache logs
  • Gingerbread biscuits
  • Orange & sour cherry fudge 

I learnt lots throughout the morning and would definitely tackle these recipes at home again. had a great morning and the treated went down a treat in the office!...
I really enjoy this cookery school, and looks like a lot of other chefs do too!... Love the messages on the stairwell pictures.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Festive spice ...

During December my diary was a little busy filled with festive fun, one evening was spent at the fabulous Piccadilly Theatre for some seasonal spice.
Yes I am referring to the new West end musical "Viva Forever"This musical is based around the songs from the Spice Girls.... As you know I am a huge fan of musical theatre, to me the main objective of any musical should bring a smile to your face, make you sing out loud and feel the need to dance in the aisles, and I need to say Viva Forever ticks all the boxes. Ignore the theatre luvvies and critics, this is a fun filled frolic from start to finish. You will know every song, and I defy anyone not to want to "Spice up their Life" by the end!
Written by Jennifer Saunders, you will feel the "ab fab-ness" of  the show. The send up of the reality musical show is just great, with fun characatures of the Simon /Sharon roles.

This musical takes you back to that feel when you first saw that "wannabee" video ... This is perfect for girls night out, I guarantee that after a couple of wines in the interval you will be dancing in the aisles... complete with all the spice girl actions...

Monday, 21 January 2013

Normal service to resume soon ....

Sincere apologies for the lack of blogging of late, i have a few reasons!...
  1. its stupid season at work trying to get the year end counted and closed, long days and weekends.
  2. what spare time I've had I have been trawling through my 1,000 photos taken whilst in New York ... Formatting ready to share.
  3. It's been too cold to motivate myself to sit at the PC, when the onesie and duvet have been the better option on the sofa!
  4. Been trying to find a solution to blogging on the IPad with photos... Hopefully this has been solved!.. This is my test post... Tried Blogger but the picture upload is not great.
Winter struck with a vengeance last week, so commuting and day to day life has been a little bit more challenging... Hopefully the thaw is on its way, and normal service can resume soon....

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Christmas catch-up...

I know its January but I didn't want the month to pass without sharing a few pictures from Christmas. Christmas is quiet for me, its just a day as I work Boxing day which is usually a little hectic.
I'm not sure where the time went on the run up to Christmas, as it felt that i just got back from new York and then it was Christmas eve. After a whirlwind of delivering presents, I ended up at my last stop and spent Christmas eve with my brother & family .. This has turned into a bit of a a tradition.
Christmas day was spent at home, lazing in my Onesie, cooking Christmas dinner and chilling on the sofa watching Christmas TV! Christmas Day did involve a little baking... Christmas morning muffins & my nans special seasonal sausage rolls! I had a very chilled and relaxing day which was lovely.

Santa was very kind to me this year with lots of lovely pressies... there were variations of themes threading through my gifts...
"Fashionista" which included Mulberry gloves, Ugg slippers, Mcqueen scarf & Michael Kors document holder & DVF book
" New Yorker" ~ New york pj's, scarf, Kenneth Cole NY mug, & coffee,Tiffany treats, and New years eve DVD.


"Bond Girl" ~ License to thrill notebook from Smythson, Daniel Craig bond collection and martini!
"Macaron mania" ~ Macaron kit, Lauduree baking book, Macaron bag charm, macaron coffee and paris notebook.
Along with these i got some other lovely gifts which included Afternoon tea at Claridges for later this year..

Boxing day saw me and Florence driving into Central London for a 7am start, where we were greeted by people queueing around the block for the start of the Selfridges sale.... the morning started on the balcony overlooking the handbag hall along with the TV crews to record the first customers through the doors!...

after a busy day it was time to drive home and chill out on the sofa Boxing day Bubble & squeak with cold meats & pickle!... perfect Boxing day dinner.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

shopping,seduction & Selfridges!

Over 100 years ago one man changed the way that London and the world would shopped forever... I am of course talking about Gordon Selfridge.
Tonight see's the start of the drama series titled "Mr Selfridge" which tells the story of Harry Gordon Selfridge and how he built his empire at 400 Oxford St. ( which at the time was deemed to be the wrong end of Oxford Street!)... Oh how things have changed!
Regarded as a retail genius 9-5 and a fool after hours he built something which is iconic, exciting and still embraces his ethos 103 years later.
For more information check out the Selfridges heritage site here or a great article here
Looking forward to sitting down with my Selfridges coffee to watch the start of this series at 9pm tonight...
You can also follow Mr Selfridge on twitter @MrSelfridge
Enjoy x

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad