Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Autumn reads.....

Before I embark on a pile of Christmas reads (I love a Christmas book, perfect for a cozy afternoon on sofa with a throw and hot chocolate) let me share what's made my "books to eat" list for Oct/Nov.
I have already shared one of my favourite reads Ali Mcnamara's Step Back in Time here's some of  my other favourites.
  • Tangled Lives - Hilary Boyd Lizzie Delancey is a 50 something mum who holds a secret, at the age of 18 she gave her son up for adoption. 32 years later an official envelope pops through the door, her son wants to meet her. Having kept this secret from her 2 grown daughters and son she has to tell them... This starts a journey with Lizzie filled with love, angst, heartache and  tangled family lives. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, loved Lizzie, Daniel her adopted son, and the story it tells.
  • Before I met you - Lisa Jewel
  • Betty Dean has spent most of her life on the island of Guernsey now in her 20's she embarks on a journey in Soho London, tracing the life of her beloved grandmother Arlette who unknown to all had lived & worked in London in the 1920's ... This book is beautiful, swinging between the 20's & 90's its a journey of love, lost & found. If the recent jazz era of Downtown Abbey has intrigued you then this book is for you... Heartbreaking & heartwarming all in one book.
  • Cupcakes at Carringtons  Alexandra Brown . Georgie runs the luxury bag concession at Carrington’s Department store in the pretty seaside town of Mulberry Bay. Her best friend runs the cupcake parlour within the store and her spending constraints means her only treat of the day is a red velvet cupcake with butter cream icing. Carrington’s goes into a recession-busting makeover and soon Georgie is fighting not only for her job, but also for the attentions 2men! ... I loved this book, it features, cupcakes, Mulberry and yummy men... I read this book when undergoing some change at work and it really hit the mark!... Can't wait for the Christmas follow-up
  • Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop ~ Abby Clements ...Imogen and Anna unexpectedly inherit their grandmother Vivien's ice cream parlour, The Brighton shop is a seafront institution, but while it's big on charm but very low on customers. Leaving Imogen in charge of the refurbishments, Anna heads to Italy for an icecream cookery course.This is a lovely book filled with charm, family and ice-cream flavours to drool over. It will make you want to spend a day in a bygone era of Brighton. .. And run away to Italy.... With a couple of delicious men and a vintage ice-cream van & recipes thrown into the mix its a scrumptious treat.
  • Billy and me - Giovanna Fletcher  Sophie lives a quiet life in a small village of Kent, one day a handsome man comes to her rescue in the tea shop where she works. Unknown to Sophie the handsome man is Billy Buskin actor/teenage heartthrob, who is filming nearby. Billy & Sophie fall in love, and this book shares there journey from village to the city life of London. Sophie's insecurities manifest as she leaves her comfort zone of home behind, with Billy's global success growing .. Can their love survive. I really enjoyed this book, Sophie at times caused me some irritation but the relationship with Molly the owner of the tea shop is beautiful. It did make me cry on the train... So have a hanky handy!.. 
  • Amelia Greys Fireside Dreams - Abby Clements  Amelia has always dreamed of a life in the country alongside husband Jack. Buying a cottage she hasn't set foot inside, soon makes that dream a reality. As Amelia begins the refurbishment and strips back the wallpaper & floors she learns about the previous owner and the secrets the cottage holds. With a teenage step sister thrust upon them and 2 hunky grandsons from the previous owner thrown in, Very soon they realise the project is much bigger than what they both expected... straining their relationship & finances. This is a lovely read, it weaves lots of subjects into the story and you will fall in love with the cottage... Perfect autumn read.
Thanks to all the authors that have kept me entertained on my commute during October & November.... You've made me laugh, cry and time travel to other places whilst several feet underground speeding across London.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Step back in Time...

Ever since Ali McNamara published her first novel From Nottinghill with Love Actually I've been a fan. I've blogged several times of my adventures with Ali & her novels over the last couple of years and now regard her as a friend. Her recent novel Step back in Time has ticked all the boxes again on being a fun fab read.

This book features Jo Jo a career driven accountant, a single girl in 2013 who likes to be in control. One of Jo Jo's clients is George a record store owner on the Kings road, after visiting his store she crosses a zebra crossing and wakes up in 1963. Harry and Ellie who feature in Jo Jo's life in 2013 pop up in 1963 and then again in different guises as she time travels through 1977, 1985, 1994 desperately trying to get back to today.
Why did I enjoy this book so much, because it does exactly what it says on the cover, it Steps you back in Time!.. It features fashion, music, and it evokes so many memories there was at times when reading on the tube I was inwardly squeeling with glee!
Ali has made some promo videos for this book for her blog which will time travel you back to buried memories... Here are two of my favourites.
The 90's
The 80's
 All the others can be found here on Ali's YouTube page (huge congrats to Rosie for filming & editing)
5 reasons why i loved & I related so much to this book....

  • Jo Jo is a single, career driven lady in 2013 who likes to be in control.... (my friends are all now smiling lots at the com-parables) Empathised with this character lots!
  • I love how music can transport you back and resurrect memories you thought were long buried. I've always compiled tapes, cd's playlists and even quoted song lyrics across my school books when doodling at school. 
  • Whilst I was decorating my walls with Duran Duran posters in the 80's my twin brother was sporting a Beatle haircut and competing the airwaves across the bedroom with The Beatles White album  and Sargent Peppers Lonely heart club band!
  • My best friend and I would shop frequently on the Kings Road in our Early 20's with Hyper Hyper being a destination store.
  • Jo Jo time travels to so many places that I have been or were prominent in my life its kind of scary!.... 
  • If you love any of the following then this book is for you!.... Ashes to Ashes, Back to the future, The Beatles, a fabulous Romcom then this books for you. A time travelling treat which will transport you across the decades filled with flares, ra-ra skirts, friends and legwarmers!... Perfect for my commute on the tube.
Ali has made some promo videos for this book for her blog which will time travel you back to buried memories... Here are two of my favourites.
Step back in Time - the 80's
 All the others can be found here on Ali's YouTube page (huge congrats to Rosie for filming & editing)
Step back in Time - the 90's

Friday, 15 November 2013

Destination christmas windows

The big yellow store launched their Christmas windows 3 weeks ago and they are proving to be a big hit!.... Stepping away from the usual Christmas scenes and lots of product, they have selected key pieces of Christmas and made them into huge gifts for Christmas... Selfridges theme this year is destination christmas a gift for everyone all under one roof!.... As with everything that Selfridges do they showcase everything from the stocking filler to the luxuriest of treats.
The giant gifts that the windows feature are; Fornasetti candle ( complete with toy train set & the scent of the candle as you walk past the window)
YSL Cassandra clutch bag ( complete with swinging tassel)
The windows also feature parachuting Kenzo Christmas jumpers, Santas boxers on the line, Givenchy hi-top trainers. Louis Vuitton handbag, large magnum of champagne,huge bose headphones and a large pot of Playdoh

The gifts are showcased in snow scenes which when you look close up feature a host of activity from Father Christmas and his friends in the North Pole. It's like when you went to the model village at the sea side when you were very young... It's not until you really lo that you start to see the fun!...
I'm loving the snowmen that have turned red in the Playdoh, the drunk penguins ice skating in the champagne spills, the aviating Santas amongst the parachuting jumpers to the BUDDIES (from the Christmas movie Elf!) in the trainer window.... So much fun for the big kid in all of us.

Destination Christmas....

I can now officially blog Christmas as the Oxford Street lights have been switched on and the holidays are definitely coming as I have seen the Coca Cola advert....
Selfridges was the destination store for the Oxford street light switch on which was very exciting. Hosted by Capital Radio's Dave Berry & Lisa Snowden it was a showbiz spectacular with sets from Conor Maynard, James Arthur and Jessie J.
Tuesday night saw Oxford street become traffic free and a winter carnival atmosphere was alive along the street.
Oxford street has new lights this year, snowflake balls are strung across the street, with trees lit with white sparkling lights and shooting icicles it really does look magical.

Selfridges Christmas theme this year is Destination Christmas; a gift for everyone all under one roof... It really is open to all, from luxury to stocking fillers the gift emporium will amaze, surprise & amuse you.... Just how Mr Selfridge would have loved!.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Remembering the heroes

Over the last 10 days London has been awash with poppies and men in uniform!.. It has mad a dull commute a little brighter. However behind the jokes and banter with the men in uniform each day is a serious message. We cannot let this generation and the generations ahead forget what a poppy is for. We owe so much to those brave men & women who didn't question their loyalty to Queen & country to put their life on the line to protect us and keep us safe. My beloved Gramps was one of those who stood on the beaches at Dunkirk waiting to be rescued and would never share the atrocities that he saw and the friends that never came home. He lived with those memories with a quiet dignity that is so lacking in today's generation. I have 2 special boys in my life who have spent time in Afghanistan and feel a sense of pride and relief every time they come back safe. I have in previous years visited the Rememberance Garden at Westminster.
2 minutes silence and a £1 in a poppy tin is a small sacrifice today to pay to say thankyou, and remember, we remember those that fought, those that live with horrific injuries and ultimately those that never came home. We do it with Pride, Dignity and we should never forget.
London has so many war memorials in close proximity of the cenotaph that I discovered recently which I am going to share on this Remembrance Day. I hope that the next time you are strolling along the embankment of cutting through Whitehall you too discover these hidden gems.
Battle of Britain memorial
The monument is a beautiful 3D bronze which set against the backdrop of the Thames & the London Eye is quite stunning.
Just along from the Battle of Britain memorial is the Royal Airforce memorial Royal Air Force
First put up in 1923, to remember the men of the Royal Flying Corps of WW1, this column faces across the river, towards France. The ‘I Bare You On Eagles Wings And Brought You Onto Myself’ carved on it is not a misspelling but a biblical quotation.
Along from the Cenotaph is a memorial opened in the last few years to honour the women who served in world war 2.
It is a stunning sculpture, simple but so effective.
Hidden down a side street on the corner of Whitehall is the Royal Tank regiment memorial.
‘From mud through blood to the green fields beyond.’ This modern bronze sculpture by Vivien Mallock faces the building where the first ever tank was designed in 1916. The two trees behind the memorial were shipped from Canada to mark the close links between that country and the regiment.
As you can see in a small lock of London there are some beautiful monuments and sculptures complete with heartfelt inscriptions that are worth a visit.
Over the last couple of weeks London has got behind the poppy appeal and done a number of things to remind us of the sacrifices made; from giant poppy at Kings Cross, to a spitfire in Covent garden to a fleet of poppy buses to military bands accompanying commutes....
I hope that where ever you are today you stop and reflect at 11o'clock and say thankyou.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

A day of treats pt 3.....

After feasting on a fabulous tea it was time to spend a couple of hours at the theatre. M & M have wanted ever since it came to the stage to see the Bodyguard. Fortunately I managed to get 3 tickets in the stalls for half price. The best thing about the booking was that Beverley Knight has recently taken over the lead role in the musical which was an added bonus. She to me has never got the credit deserved for one of Britain's best female soul singers.
The trailer details just how much of Whitneys back catalogue is showcased in this musical... BK is phenomenal
The musical sticks to the premise of the film, with Tristam Gamble playing Frank Farmer the
Bodyguard as eloquently as Kevin Costner ...however the young actor who plays Fletcher the son nearly steals the show on a couple of occasions.
This musical bought back so many memories for me. The film hit the cinema right at the height of my greatest love affair and the soundtrack was never far from my CD player!... It was one of my Nans favourite films and she would have loved the stage show, but would have been delighted that I went with 2 such special ladies. My closest friends will understand the irony of it all, and not one that I can share on here!!!!... We had a fab night which finished with us rocking in the aisles to I wanna dance with somebody.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

A day of treats....pt2

The Savoy is one of the nicest and glamorous hotels in London. It has become one of my most favourite over the years which is why when we started discussing where to celebrate Mary's 70th birthday this was at the top of my list.
The Savoy mixes that old school glamour of the Hollywood years and British class.
On arrival you can't help be swept away by the beautiful art deco surroundings, the perfectly tailored doormen and the luxury cars and taxis sweeping up the drive. Even with the drizzle of rain we couldn't help but be swept away by it all.
As we entered the revolving doors you are swept into a different world, away from the hustle & bustle of London to a world of glamour, peace, and made to feel very special.
Tea is served in the Thames foyer, under a stunning Art Deco glass domed ceiling, complete with winter gazebo, serenaded by a pianist and a baby grand piano. Even with the hotel being busy, there is a feeling of calm and peace. A credit to the staff & team who deliver amazing service and make you feel very special.
The tea has many servings... Sandwiches, Scones, pastries and sliced cake, all complimented by a huge pot of tea!... The sandwiches were a selection of smoked & poached salmon, cucumber & tomato, coronation chicken, ham, and egg & Japanese caviar. The scones which just melt in the mouth were complimented with thick Cornish cream, raspberry jam & lemon curd.
The pastry tray was a feast for the senses, I chose pineapple cheesecake, chocolate torte and a raspberry & earl grey macaron.
We passed on the cake trolley as we were all stuffed, but all looked delicious. Prior to the pastry tray The waitress had picked up that we were celebrating a birthday and presented her with a little birthday plate, complete with candle!
We all had a fabulous afternoon a perfect treat, service and surroundings were delightful.

A stress free day filled with treats.... Pt 1

Wednesday is National Stress awareness day and I am determined to have a stress free day!
I have 2 special older ladies Marion & Mary (affectionatly known as the M&M's) in my life who have known me all my life, every Saturday evening we go for an early supper at our local Indian and they make me laugh lots. The have been friends over 50 years and are both now in their 8th decade. They are so much more to me than friends, they are very much part of my chosen family. Mary is celebrating her 70th birthday this week, Marion and myself have booked to take her to the Savoy for afternoon tea followed by a trip to the theatre to see The Bodyguard all as a lovely surprise.
Prior to my afternoon tea a much needed trip to the hair salon was required. I needed a good cut, and colour! Fortunately I don't need to go often as when I do I loose a morning!.. By the time I've caught up with the news, foils, colour, deep condition, cut, blow dry and a spot under the heat lamp I can loose 4 hours!!!.... However I am always pleased with the results ... and as us ladies know you need to go through a little pain for a lot of glamour!!!.
If only I could wake up with it looking like this every day!... alas a 5am start doesn't lend to big & bouncy styling, which when I do do it makes it a little special.... Having been pampered & styled it was time for a spot of tea.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Remember, remember ....

The 5th November, gunpowder, treason and plot....
It seems that over the years that Bonfire night is slowly being forgotten between the sweets & fancy dress of Halloween, lights of Diwali, Health & Safety brigade and the countdown to Christmas.
I love Bonfire night... The air is filled with smoke, gunpowder and the smell is just magical. The sky fills with bursts of red, green & white as fireworks explode in the dark night sky.
This year I went to friends for an impromptu bonfire, where we were fed  sausages & fire roasted red potatoes in their jackets.... Mmmmm,
Night was complete with lashings of hot chocolate and sparklers ( my favourite firework)... Fun & fireworks for the 5th x
What did you do for bonfire night?... Do you still celebrate?... What's your favourite food? 

Monday, 4 November 2013

Halloween tea...

As most of you know I am partial to an afternoon tea and on Halloween I decided to treat myself to a little trick of a tea for Halloween. A number of hotels hosted Halloween tea this year and I chose the tea rooms at The Royal Horseguards . The hotel is tucked away between Whitehall & Embankment and is a gorgeous old fashioned hotel.
The tea came with the usual sandwiches & scones, along with mini tuna melts & savoury stuffed profiteroles, Halloween cakes, cake pops & candy floss.  The tea was fun and perfect or us big kids who can't 'trick or treat'. My only disappointment was service wasn't great.
I would visit the hotel again as he huge sofas by the fireplace would be a perfect retreat after a bracing walk along the river in winter, complete with a large hot chocolate.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

A beautiful morning....

Financial month end usually finds me at my desk at some point of the weekend, finalising and reporting for the month. Most often its a Sunday.... Today was one of those days, the best part of it is usually my drive into London. Normally I head in early and part of my drive takes me down the embankment. This morning the day was so lovely I parked the car along the river and grabbed a coffee and went for a stroll.
This way I got to enjoy the early morning light & views in relative peace and quiet,with just an occasional jogger passing by it was a lovely way to start the morning.
Fortunately I had my camera in my bag and snapped a few pics.... Here's 3 of my favourites....
I love the contrast of light and dark and of the red buses on the grey bridge & blue sky. Today's theme on #bedn is Light in celebration of Diwali ....

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Baked with Love

Last month I pulled out the cake decorating box and made a cake for a birthday at work... What do you make the lady that loves shoes!... You make a shoe box!...
It's been a long time since I made an actual cake, the most preferred birthday treat over the last couple of years has been cupcakes.... Over the last couple of months i have made made an selection of different cakes .... Cupcakes for 70th & 80th birthdays, a strawberry & chocolate cake for a Pimms picnic ... here's a montage!
I have baked for many years,and still love it, with the success of the Great British Bake off, baking and cake decorating has never been so popular.... What have you made lately?

Friday, 1 November 2013

Hello November....

Wow where did October go?.... Welcome November.... Looking forward to cozy nights, comfort food & counting down to Christmas....
To assist me on the way I am going to attempt to Blog every day in November!... I have already fallen at the first hurdle but hoping to catch up & not beat myself up if I miss a day!!.if you want to know more, pop over to Here for more info.
 Day 1's topic is me!!.. So as its the 11th month I am going to share 11 things about me!.
  1. My name's Teresa and I Love New York!
  2. I am an avid reader
  3. I'm a loyal friend
  4. I have a twin brother 'sister', niece & nephew who are very special to me.
  5. I work at the home of Mr Selfridge!
  6. I love Rugby.... Especially Jonny Wilkinson's thighs!
  7. I have 2 kittens Fitz & Darcy
  8. My day is not complete without a very large morning coffee
  9. I love fresh cut flowers
  10. I enjoy photography
  11. 30 years on I'm still a big Duran Duran fan!
Well that's November started..... Off to find out a bit more from the fellow #BEDN bloggers

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Autumn reads.....

Before I embark on a pile of Christmas reads (I love a Christmas book, perfect for a cozy afternoon on sofa with a throw and hot chocolate) let me share what's made my "books to eat" list for Oct/Nov.
I have already shared one of my favourite reads Ali Mcnamara's Step Back in Time here's some of  my other favourites.
  • Tangled Lives - Hilary Boyd Lizzie Delancey is a 50 something mum who holds a secret, at the age of 18 she gave her son up for adoption. 32 years later an official envelope pops through the door, her son wants to meet her. Having kept this secret from her 2 grown daughters and son she has to tell them... This starts a journey with Lizzie filled with love, angst, heartache and  tangled family lives. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, loved Lizzie, Daniel her adopted son, and the story it tells.
  • Before I met you - Lisa Jewel
  • Betty Dean has spent most of her life on the island of Guernsey now in her 20's she embarks on a journey in Soho London, tracing the life of her beloved grandmother Arlette who unknown to all had lived & worked in London in the 1920's ... This book is beautiful, swinging between the 20's & 90's its a journey of love, lost & found. If the recent jazz era of Downtown Abbey has intrigued you then this book is for you... Heartbreaking & heartwarming all in one book.
  • Cupcakes at Carringtons  Alexandra Brown . Georgie runs the luxury bag concession at Carrington’s Department store in the pretty seaside town of Mulberry Bay. Her best friend runs the cupcake parlour within the store and her spending constraints means her only treat of the day is a red velvet cupcake with butter cream icing. Carrington’s goes into a recession-busting makeover and soon Georgie is fighting not only for her job, but also for the attentions 2men! ... I loved this book, it features, cupcakes, Mulberry and yummy men... I read this book when undergoing some change at work and it really hit the mark!... Can't wait for the Christmas follow-up
  • Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop ~ Abby Clements ...Imogen and Anna unexpectedly inherit their grandmother Vivien's ice cream parlour, The Brighton shop is a seafront institution, but while it's big on charm but very low on customers. Leaving Imogen in charge of the refurbishments, Anna heads to Italy for an icecream cookery course.This is a lovely book filled with charm, family and ice-cream flavours to drool over. It will make you want to spend a day in a bygone era of Brighton. .. And run away to Italy.... With a couple of delicious men and a vintage ice-cream van & recipes thrown into the mix its a scrumptious treat.
  • Billy and me - Giovanna Fletcher  Sophie lives a quiet life in a small village of Kent, one day a handsome man comes to her rescue in the tea shop where she works. Unknown to Sophie the handsome man is Billy Buskin actor/teenage heartthrob, who is filming nearby. Billy & Sophie fall in love, and this book shares there journey from village to the city life of London. Sophie's insecurities manifest as she leaves her comfort zone of home behind, with Billy's global success growing .. Can their love survive. I really enjoyed this book, Sophie at times caused me some irritation but the relationship with Molly the owner of the tea shop is beautiful. It did make me cry on the train... So have a hanky handy!.. 
  • Amelia Greys Fireside Dreams - Abby Clements  Amelia has always dreamed of a life in the country alongside husband Jack. Buying a cottage she hasn't set foot inside, soon makes that dream a reality. As Amelia begins the refurbishment and strips back the wallpaper & floors she learns about the previous owner and the secrets the cottage holds. With a teenage step sister thrust upon them and 2 hunky grandsons from the previous owner thrown in, Very soon they realise the project is much bigger than what they both expected... straining their relationship & finances. This is a lovely read, it weaves lots of subjects into the story and you will fall in love with the cottage... Perfect autumn read.
Thanks to all the authors that have kept me entertained on my commute during October & November.... You've made me laugh, cry and time travel to other places whilst several feet underground speeding across London.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Step back in Time...

Ever since Ali McNamara published her first novel From Nottinghill with Love Actually I've been a fan. I've blogged several times of my adventures with Ali & her novels over the last couple of years and now regard her as a friend. Her recent novel Step back in Time has ticked all the boxes again on being a fun fab read.

This book features Jo Jo a career driven accountant, a single girl in 2013 who likes to be in control. One of Jo Jo's clients is George a record store owner on the Kings road, after visiting his store she crosses a zebra crossing and wakes up in 1963. Harry and Ellie who feature in Jo Jo's life in 2013 pop up in 1963 and then again in different guises as she time travels through 1977, 1985, 1994 desperately trying to get back to today.
Why did I enjoy this book so much, because it does exactly what it says on the cover, it Steps you back in Time!.. It features fashion, music, and it evokes so many memories there was at times when reading on the tube I was inwardly squeeling with glee!
Ali has made some promo videos for this book for her blog which will time travel you back to buried memories... Here are two of my favourites.
The 90's
The 80's
 All the others can be found here on Ali's YouTube page (huge congrats to Rosie for filming & editing)
5 reasons why i loved & I related so much to this book....

  • Jo Jo is a single, career driven lady in 2013 who likes to be in control.... (my friends are all now smiling lots at the com-parables) Empathised with this character lots!
  • I love how music can transport you back and resurrect memories you thought were long buried. I've always compiled tapes, cd's playlists and even quoted song lyrics across my school books when doodling at school. 
  • Whilst I was decorating my walls with Duran Duran posters in the 80's my twin brother was sporting a Beatle haircut and competing the airwaves across the bedroom with The Beatles White album  and Sargent Peppers Lonely heart club band!
  • My best friend and I would shop frequently on the Kings Road in our Early 20's with Hyper Hyper being a destination store.
  • Jo Jo time travels to so many places that I have been or were prominent in my life its kind of scary!.... 
  • If you love any of the following then this book is for you!.... Ashes to Ashes, Back to the future, The Beatles, a fabulous Romcom then this books for you. A time travelling treat which will transport you across the decades filled with flares, ra-ra skirts, friends and legwarmers!... Perfect for my commute on the tube.
Ali has made some promo videos for this book for her blog which will time travel you back to buried memories... Here are two of my favourites.
Step back in Time - the 80's
 All the others can be found here on Ali's YouTube page (huge congrats to Rosie for filming & editing)
Step back in Time - the 90's

Friday, 15 November 2013

Destination christmas windows

The big yellow store launched their Christmas windows 3 weeks ago and they are proving to be a big hit!.... Stepping away from the usual Christmas scenes and lots of product, they have selected key pieces of Christmas and made them into huge gifts for Christmas... Selfridges theme this year is destination christmas a gift for everyone all under one roof!.... As with everything that Selfridges do they showcase everything from the stocking filler to the luxuriest of treats.
The giant gifts that the windows feature are; Fornasetti candle ( complete with toy train set & the scent of the candle as you walk past the window)
YSL Cassandra clutch bag ( complete with swinging tassel)
The windows also feature parachuting Kenzo Christmas jumpers, Santas boxers on the line, Givenchy hi-top trainers. Louis Vuitton handbag, large magnum of champagne,huge bose headphones and a large pot of Playdoh

The gifts are showcased in snow scenes which when you look close up feature a host of activity from Father Christmas and his friends in the North Pole. It's like when you went to the model village at the sea side when you were very young... It's not until you really lo that you start to see the fun!...
I'm loving the snowmen that have turned red in the Playdoh, the drunk penguins ice skating in the champagne spills, the aviating Santas amongst the parachuting jumpers to the BUDDIES (from the Christmas movie Elf!) in the trainer window.... So much fun for the big kid in all of us.

Destination Christmas....

I can now officially blog Christmas as the Oxford Street lights have been switched on and the holidays are definitely coming as I have seen the Coca Cola advert....
Selfridges was the destination store for the Oxford street light switch on which was very exciting. Hosted by Capital Radio's Dave Berry & Lisa Snowden it was a showbiz spectacular with sets from Conor Maynard, James Arthur and Jessie J.
Tuesday night saw Oxford street become traffic free and a winter carnival atmosphere was alive along the street.
Oxford street has new lights this year, snowflake balls are strung across the street, with trees lit with white sparkling lights and shooting icicles it really does look magical.

Selfridges Christmas theme this year is Destination Christmas; a gift for everyone all under one roof... It really is open to all, from luxury to stocking fillers the gift emporium will amaze, surprise & amuse you.... Just how Mr Selfridge would have loved!.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Remembering the heroes

Over the last 10 days London has been awash with poppies and men in uniform!.. It has mad a dull commute a little brighter. However behind the jokes and banter with the men in uniform each day is a serious message. We cannot let this generation and the generations ahead forget what a poppy is for. We owe so much to those brave men & women who didn't question their loyalty to Queen & country to put their life on the line to protect us and keep us safe. My beloved Gramps was one of those who stood on the beaches at Dunkirk waiting to be rescued and would never share the atrocities that he saw and the friends that never came home. He lived with those memories with a quiet dignity that is so lacking in today's generation. I have 2 special boys in my life who have spent time in Afghanistan and feel a sense of pride and relief every time they come back safe. I have in previous years visited the Rememberance Garden at Westminster.
2 minutes silence and a £1 in a poppy tin is a small sacrifice today to pay to say thankyou, and remember, we remember those that fought, those that live with horrific injuries and ultimately those that never came home. We do it with Pride, Dignity and we should never forget.
London has so many war memorials in close proximity of the cenotaph that I discovered recently which I am going to share on this Remembrance Day. I hope that the next time you are strolling along the embankment of cutting through Whitehall you too discover these hidden gems.
Battle of Britain memorial
The monument is a beautiful 3D bronze which set against the backdrop of the Thames & the London Eye is quite stunning.
Just along from the Battle of Britain memorial is the Royal Airforce memorial Royal Air Force
First put up in 1923, to remember the men of the Royal Flying Corps of WW1, this column faces across the river, towards France. The ‘I Bare You On Eagles Wings And Brought You Onto Myself’ carved on it is not a misspelling but a biblical quotation.
Along from the Cenotaph is a memorial opened in the last few years to honour the women who served in world war 2.
It is a stunning sculpture, simple but so effective.
Hidden down a side street on the corner of Whitehall is the Royal Tank regiment memorial.
‘From mud through blood to the green fields beyond.’ This modern bronze sculpture by Vivien Mallock faces the building where the first ever tank was designed in 1916. The two trees behind the memorial were shipped from Canada to mark the close links between that country and the regiment.
As you can see in a small lock of London there are some beautiful monuments and sculptures complete with heartfelt inscriptions that are worth a visit.
Over the last couple of weeks London has got behind the poppy appeal and done a number of things to remind us of the sacrifices made; from giant poppy at Kings Cross, to a spitfire in Covent garden to a fleet of poppy buses to military bands accompanying commutes....
I hope that where ever you are today you stop and reflect at 11o'clock and say thankyou.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

A day of treats pt 3.....

After feasting on a fabulous tea it was time to spend a couple of hours at the theatre. M & M have wanted ever since it came to the stage to see the Bodyguard. Fortunately I managed to get 3 tickets in the stalls for half price. The best thing about the booking was that Beverley Knight has recently taken over the lead role in the musical which was an added bonus. She to me has never got the credit deserved for one of Britain's best female soul singers.
The trailer details just how much of Whitneys back catalogue is showcased in this musical... BK is phenomenal
The musical sticks to the premise of the film, with Tristam Gamble playing Frank Farmer the
Bodyguard as eloquently as Kevin Costner ...however the young actor who plays Fletcher the son nearly steals the show on a couple of occasions.
This musical bought back so many memories for me. The film hit the cinema right at the height of my greatest love affair and the soundtrack was never far from my CD player!... It was one of my Nans favourite films and she would have loved the stage show, but would have been delighted that I went with 2 such special ladies. My closest friends will understand the irony of it all, and not one that I can share on here!!!!... We had a fab night which finished with us rocking in the aisles to I wanna dance with somebody.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

A day of treats....pt2

The Savoy is one of the nicest and glamorous hotels in London. It has become one of my most favourite over the years which is why when we started discussing where to celebrate Mary's 70th birthday this was at the top of my list.
The Savoy mixes that old school glamour of the Hollywood years and British class.
On arrival you can't help be swept away by the beautiful art deco surroundings, the perfectly tailored doormen and the luxury cars and taxis sweeping up the drive. Even with the drizzle of rain we couldn't help but be swept away by it all.
As we entered the revolving doors you are swept into a different world, away from the hustle & bustle of London to a world of glamour, peace, and made to feel very special.
Tea is served in the Thames foyer, under a stunning Art Deco glass domed ceiling, complete with winter gazebo, serenaded by a pianist and a baby grand piano. Even with the hotel being busy, there is a feeling of calm and peace. A credit to the staff & team who deliver amazing service and make you feel very special.
The tea has many servings... Sandwiches, Scones, pastries and sliced cake, all complimented by a huge pot of tea!... The sandwiches were a selection of smoked & poached salmon, cucumber & tomato, coronation chicken, ham, and egg & Japanese caviar. The scones which just melt in the mouth were complimented with thick Cornish cream, raspberry jam & lemon curd.
The pastry tray was a feast for the senses, I chose pineapple cheesecake, chocolate torte and a raspberry & earl grey macaron.
We passed on the cake trolley as we were all stuffed, but all looked delicious. Prior to the pastry tray The waitress had picked up that we were celebrating a birthday and presented her with a little birthday plate, complete with candle!
We all had a fabulous afternoon a perfect treat, service and surroundings were delightful.

A stress free day filled with treats.... Pt 1

Wednesday is National Stress awareness day and I am determined to have a stress free day!
I have 2 special older ladies Marion & Mary (affectionatly known as the M&M's) in my life who have known me all my life, every Saturday evening we go for an early supper at our local Indian and they make me laugh lots. The have been friends over 50 years and are both now in their 8th decade. They are so much more to me than friends, they are very much part of my chosen family. Mary is celebrating her 70th birthday this week, Marion and myself have booked to take her to the Savoy for afternoon tea followed by a trip to the theatre to see The Bodyguard all as a lovely surprise.
Prior to my afternoon tea a much needed trip to the hair salon was required. I needed a good cut, and colour! Fortunately I don't need to go often as when I do I loose a morning!.. By the time I've caught up with the news, foils, colour, deep condition, cut, blow dry and a spot under the heat lamp I can loose 4 hours!!!.... However I am always pleased with the results ... and as us ladies know you need to go through a little pain for a lot of glamour!!!.
If only I could wake up with it looking like this every day!... alas a 5am start doesn't lend to big & bouncy styling, which when I do do it makes it a little special.... Having been pampered & styled it was time for a spot of tea.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Remember, remember ....

The 5th November, gunpowder, treason and plot....
It seems that over the years that Bonfire night is slowly being forgotten between the sweets & fancy dress of Halloween, lights of Diwali, Health & Safety brigade and the countdown to Christmas.
I love Bonfire night... The air is filled with smoke, gunpowder and the smell is just magical. The sky fills with bursts of red, green & white as fireworks explode in the dark night sky.
This year I went to friends for an impromptu bonfire, where we were fed  sausages & fire roasted red potatoes in their jackets.... Mmmmm,
Night was complete with lashings of hot chocolate and sparklers ( my favourite firework)... Fun & fireworks for the 5th x
What did you do for bonfire night?... Do you still celebrate?... What's your favourite food? 

Monday, 4 November 2013

Halloween tea...

As most of you know I am partial to an afternoon tea and on Halloween I decided to treat myself to a little trick of a tea for Halloween. A number of hotels hosted Halloween tea this year and I chose the tea rooms at The Royal Horseguards . The hotel is tucked away between Whitehall & Embankment and is a gorgeous old fashioned hotel.
The tea came with the usual sandwiches & scones, along with mini tuna melts & savoury stuffed profiteroles, Halloween cakes, cake pops & candy floss.  The tea was fun and perfect or us big kids who can't 'trick or treat'. My only disappointment was service wasn't great.
I would visit the hotel again as he huge sofas by the fireplace would be a perfect retreat after a bracing walk along the river in winter, complete with a large hot chocolate.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

A beautiful morning....

Financial month end usually finds me at my desk at some point of the weekend, finalising and reporting for the month. Most often its a Sunday.... Today was one of those days, the best part of it is usually my drive into London. Normally I head in early and part of my drive takes me down the embankment. This morning the day was so lovely I parked the car along the river and grabbed a coffee and went for a stroll.
This way I got to enjoy the early morning light & views in relative peace and quiet,with just an occasional jogger passing by it was a lovely way to start the morning.
Fortunately I had my camera in my bag and snapped a few pics.... Here's 3 of my favourites....
I love the contrast of light and dark and of the red buses on the grey bridge & blue sky. Today's theme on #bedn is Light in celebration of Diwali ....

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Baked with Love

Last month I pulled out the cake decorating box and made a cake for a birthday at work... What do you make the lady that loves shoes!... You make a shoe box!...
It's been a long time since I made an actual cake, the most preferred birthday treat over the last couple of years has been cupcakes.... Over the last couple of months i have made made an selection of different cakes .... Cupcakes for 70th & 80th birthdays, a strawberry & chocolate cake for a Pimms picnic ... here's a montage!
I have baked for many years,and still love it, with the success of the Great British Bake off, baking and cake decorating has never been so popular.... What have you made lately?

Friday, 1 November 2013

Hello November....

Wow where did October go?.... Welcome November.... Looking forward to cozy nights, comfort food & counting down to Christmas....
To assist me on the way I am going to attempt to Blog every day in November!... I have already fallen at the first hurdle but hoping to catch up & not beat myself up if I miss a day!!.if you want to know more, pop over to Here for more info.
 Day 1's topic is me!!.. So as its the 11th month I am going to share 11 things about me!.
  1. My name's Teresa and I Love New York!
  2. I am an avid reader
  3. I'm a loyal friend
  4. I have a twin brother 'sister', niece & nephew who are very special to me.
  5. I work at the home of Mr Selfridge!
  6. I love Rugby.... Especially Jonny Wilkinson's thighs!
  7. I have 2 kittens Fitz & Darcy
  8. My day is not complete without a very large morning coffee
  9. I love fresh cut flowers
  10. I enjoy photography
  11. 30 years on I'm still a big Duran Duran fan!
Well that's November started..... Off to find out a bit more from the fellow #BEDN bloggers