The first rule of Blook Club…

12 Sep

 The first rule of Blook Club...Yesterday, I held the first, little trial run of Blook Club.

Some very lovely blogging ladies came along
and it seemed to go pretty well.
We all liked the book for a start.

We’d all cringed, laughed, guffawed
and crossed our legs at the book.

As it was the first Blook Club, and the first time
meeting for some of us, I thought it might be
safer to start talking about the fashion chapter.

But from there (with the help of some booze)
we covered life, housework, vulvas
and everything inbetween.

The word ‘junk’ has also been changed
irrevocably, thanks to Lauren!
Must remember not to tell
Americans how much I love junk!

We laughed. We ranted. We probably
made for entertaining eavesdropping!

*****

If you haven’t read How to be a Woman, do.
Though be warned, it’ll make want to read out loud
all the rude, brilliant, immensely quotable sections
to complete strangers on trains.

My husband was my audience.
He just kept asking, ‘what are you reading?’
followed by ‘who suggested this book?’
Yup, that would be me.

I stopped reading it out loud
when I came to the childbirth chapters.

Instead, I may have had the following
expression on my face…

 The first rule of Blook Club...You have been doubly warned!

*****

So, the next Blook Club…

I wanted to choose something very different
to How To Be A Woman and so I choose something
that I bought as part of my 3 for 2 when I got HTBAW!
(Yup, an intellectual choosing process here!)

To read: When God Was A Rabbit
To read by: 16th October

 The first rule of Blook Club...
(UPDATE: I’ve now moved the ‘about’ Blook Club details
to its own page… just click the button at the top right.)

****

Oh, and the first rule of Blook Club…
to have fun. (And read a book.)
(And maybe eat some cake.)

If you’d like to join, just leave a comment here
or email and I’ll put you on the list.
Already emailed/commented?
Expect to hear from me soon.

There’s also quite a few people asking
about reading along online. If you’re
doing that, you can use #blookclub
on twitter, leave a comment here if you fancy
or write you own post and I’ll link to it here.

*****

Happy Monday everyone xx

Ten years ago…

11 Sep

il fullxfull 244468262 Ten years ago... Ten years ago, I was living in LA.

Ten years, I woke up to the phone ringing…

My Dad saying “Zoë, wake up, America is on fire.”

Ten years ago, I switched on the TV
minutes before the second plane hit.

*****

Hours later, with nowhere to go,
I went out into the empty streets,
where lit candles were now perched everywhere,
and walked to Santa Monica without even thinking.

The beach was the busiest I’d ever seen it.
But also the quietest. Just people sitting on the sand,
some silent, some silently sobbing.

I sat down, and watched the waves roll in and out.
I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t cry, all I could do
was hold my now husband’s hand so tightly and
think of all those people… especially of those
people who held hands at the end.

*****

Image by sixthandmain

Introducing… Blook Club

6 Sep

 Introducing... Blook ClubEvery year, I write a ‘to do’ list instead of resolutions.

For the past 2 years, my list has included ‘join a book club’.

(I adore books. Not just for colour coding you see!)

And for 1 and half years, I’ve not really managed that.

*****

While working one night, I started moaning about
my lack of book reading to my husband.
He said, as I think he always says now,
why don’t you ask twitter if they know of one.

So, I did. More specifically, I asked Kirsty
if she knew of one. And then somehow our
conversation ended up with me organising
a book club, as opposed to joining one!

I called it ‘Blook Club’.
Bloggers plus books.
And then I made a little logo
(despite the fact I’m not a designer).
So it’s sort of all official now.

Ta-da.

blook club cp Introducing... Blook Club
We’re holding the first one in Edinburgh this weekend,
but if you fancy coming to future Blook Clubs
(or even to this weekend’s), just drop me a line.

I’m kind of excited (and a bit nervous)
to meet everyone, start reading more again
and then babble about it at length…

God help the poor souls
who have signed up already!

*****

P.S. Any suggestions of books gratefully received.
For the first one, we’re reading How to be a Woman.
I thought it would give us plenty to chat about!

I Do DIY… finding a home in our home for wedding stuff

5 Sep

 I Do DIY... finding a home in our home for wedding stuff“What do you do with wedding stuff after the wedding?”

Of all the wedding related questions I’ve received
recently this (from Lorri) struck me as a striking one…

You spend so much time making things and then what?

For us, there’s a simple answer.

We had a wedding sign – a gorgeous, gorgeous thing
made by my super talented uncle – and there was no way
it wasn’t going to become a feature of our home.

 I Do DIY... finding a home in our home for wedding stuffSo at the weekend, we hung up our sign in our kitchen.
The space totally seems like it was made for the sign.

It made me so happy to see while
eating my cereal this morning!

As for our other bits and bobs…

We also put back up our gin print.
(It was our ‘bar sign’ at our wedding.)

 I Do DIY... finding a home in our home for wedding stuffAnd hung up our new ‘bike’ print… a wedding
present from our best man and best lady.

Happily the two co-ordinate very well!

 I Do DIY... finding a home in our home for wedding stuffThis is where our chalkboard sign currently resides…
I may have to think of a better place for it eventually
but I kind of like it here at the moment.

We also finally found a spot for our Hang It All
(a wedding present from very generous friends).
And somehow one of our stags seems to suit being here…
so he’s found a home too.

 I Do DIY... finding a home in our home for wedding stuffElsewhere in the flat, we have jam jars with candles
and jam jars with leftover pinwheels. It makes
me smile to see them every day and glad
that we don’t have to put them ‘away’ just yet.

Happy Monday everyone xx

P.S. What’s your advice? What did you do
or are planning to do with your wedding diy?

P.P.S. I have no idea quite where to begin with
blogging about our wedding. I have a few DIYs
to share but if there’s anything you want to
know or ask, do let me know!

Friday I'm in love… with caravans

2 Sep

shasta caravan 006 Friday I'm in love... with caravans Since we came back from minimoon,
I’ve developed a bit of a crush on caravans.

Just after we got back, I opened up the Cath Kidston
magazine to discover an article on buying caravans.

It seemed like a sign.

(Despite the fact it was also the same weekend
as some tossbag trashed our car. Ahem.)

 Friday I'm in love... with caravansThe problem is… we live in a flat.

In the middle of Edinburgh.

Not ideal for keeping a caravan I know
but sometimes it’s nice to dream about these
things without worrying about the logistics.

constance caravan 002 Friday I'm in love... with caravans Anyway, I was pondering what
it is I like so much about caravans…

113391459 aebao6og c Friday I'm in love... with caravans And I came up with two reasons. (Well, three really.)

1. Very happy childhood memories of caravaning
with my Nana, my Papa, my cousins, my cat.
Fuzzy felt, listening to the rain on the roof
and drinking sweet tea with nettle stings on my knees.

2. And this one came from the same Cath Kidston mag…
“a caravan is another room to enjoy doing up,
without moving house”. Well, if that doesn’t
just sound like something I would say!

3. As well as my very happy childhood memories,
a caravan is now where I have been
at my happiest as an adult too.

 Friday I'm in love... with caravans

In my Dad’s wedding speech, he wrote a sonnet
(yes he made people cry with his speech!)
that ended with the words
“It sounds like rain on a caravan roof.”

And then he spoke about how my Nana
would have loved that we were starting
our married life in a caravan.

Not only because she loved caravans but
“because it’s also a perfect metaphor for a long successful married life.
She would have agreed it’s about joy and disappointment shared,
up close. That’s a real test of any relationship
but the key thing to remember is, come rain or shine,
all you need is those you love and those who love you back.”

(I said he made people cry.)

 Friday I'm in love... with caravansSo this Friday, I’m truly utterly, smitten
with the idea of us having a little caravan
of our own… and you know one day
we might even make it a reality.

blogcupcakes1 Friday I'm in love... with caravans

blogcupcakes3 Friday I'm in love... with caravans
Happy Friday everyone xx
Hope you all have lovely weekends.

*****

P.S. That little yellow caravan?
It has the most stylish interior
I’ve ever seen for a caravan!

*****

1. and 3. via snailtrail (via guardian)
2, 5 and 6 scanned from cath kidston mag
4. caravanolic (via pinterest)
7. and 8. enjoycupcakes (via urbanfarmgirlandco)

Weddingnesday… our woodland wedding

25 Aug

zoe wedding carriden house 001 2 Weddingnesday... our woodland wedding Some of you may have spotted this…
but pictures of our day are now up
on our lovely photographers’ blog.

Which means I can start talking
about our woodland wedding
in our wonderful tipis.

zoe wedding carriden house 064 1 Weddingnesday... our woodland wedding It’s still a little scary it all being ‘out there’.

But at the same time, I’m stupendously proud
of all the people who helped our day happen.
Ours might have been a DIY wedding
but I certainly didn’t do it all myself…

I had the help of our amazing families,
wonderful friends, brilliant suppliers…
and of course my supremely awesome husband.

zoe neil 067 Weddingnesday... our woodland wedding That sign?
It says ‘Do I love you? Indeed I do’.
(It was my ‘walk-in’ song.)

That slightly serious looking man?
That’s my now husband.
Yes, I love him. Indeed I do.

******

P.S. Apologies for all the weddingy posts
of late… there are probably a lot more
to come. But I will be blogging interiors
and thrifty finds as well soon. Promise.

Weddingnesday… two years ago

24 Aug

 Weddingnesday... two years ago

 Weddingnesday... two years ago

 Weddingnesday... two years ago

 Weddingnesday... two years ago

Two years ago, my now husband asked me to marry him.

One red velvet cupcake. One perspex diamond ring.

One very important question…

That would eventually turn
‘you & me’ into ‘Mr & Mrs’.

*****

Inbetween then and now,
there’s been several other cupcakes,
another ring (my perspex one made in gold),
oh yes, and a bunch of other questions…

Like ‘it costs how much to rent toilets?!’.
Ah, the romance.

 Honestly, I love being married.
And having no wedding planning to do!

(After seeing an ‘after the wedding’ stream
on twitter started by cakes and bunting,
I don’t think I’m the only one.)

*****

P.S. The cupcake pictured got eaten immediately
after taking this picture. A very yummy
engagement anniversary present!

Eek, it's a sneak peek

19 Aug

4902253 rkhygkgq c Eek, it's a sneak peek

There is the teeny tiniest of sneak peeks
up on our photographers’ blog.

A good excuse for some cute pics
of animals peeking I feel.

il 570xn 226590971 Eek, it's a sneak peek

Strangely I’m suddenly very nervous
about sharing our day…

Not about the pictures themselves,
but how much the day meant to me…
it’s scary sharing something that important,
even though I can’t imagine anyone will say
anything but nice stuff.

But still… that kitten? That’s me,
hiding round the corner for a bit!

******

Have a lovely weekend everyone.
I’m off to another wedding!

******

1. http://i.imgur.com/yexvD.jpg
2. susansabophotography
(Both via pinterest)

pixel Eek, it's a sneak peek
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