Sunday, 2 June 2013

Melbourne: Staying and Seeing

More on Melbourne, I only got back last Saturday but already it feels like a distant memory, so I am trying to get it all down before I forget any of the lovely details.

We flew with Royal Brunei Airlines as it was the cheapest option with the best flight times for us, at just over £700 each. We flew Friday evening and landed Sunday mornings, with stop-offs in Dubai for refuelling and in Brunei which meant we had the opportunity to stretch our legs every 7 hours or so (though at Brunei not so much space to do so, the airport is tiny). The middle leg of the journey was perfection, as a lot of people disembarked at Dubai, meaning we had loads of space to spread out (no such luck on the way back). I can't fault the airline, the service we received, and the food was pretty good for plane food too. It's a Muslim airline so there is no booze served on board but to be honest that doesn't bother me as I always get really dehydrated during a flight.

We booked the Cosmopolitan Hotel a couple of months before we travelled via's Top Secret Hotels and we got a real bargain at around £550 for 12 nights instead of £750. We'd toyed with finding an apartment and doing self catering, but we ended up going for the hotel option as it was better value, and we could use the saving we made for eating out, it was a holiday after all!

The hotel was great. We'd asked for a twin room (I didn't fancy sharing a bed with my mum for two weeks) and the room we got was huge, with a double and two singles, so it must have been a family room. There was loads of extra space which was great for a long stay as we actually felt comfortable, some hotel rooms are so poky you don't want to spend any time in them. The room came equipped with a mini fridge, air conditioning, a hairdryer and TV with DVD player and free wifi (although signal could be pretty weak, on a couple of occasions I had to go to the hotel reception and hover just to upload a photo). The hotel staff were really helpful and were flexible enough to let us check in early when we arrived after the long journey, and were also able to help with airport shuttle bookings and local information, and there were DVDs and magazines to borrow in reception, along with a computer for guest use.

The location was great too, just off Ackland Street in St Kilda and 5 minutes from the beach, with a tram stop just over the road to get into Melbourne which took about 20 minutes. Being out of the city and right by the beach just added to the holiday feel. The trams start pretty early so a couple of times we were woken by that, and we had been told that St Kilda was pretty lively too. To be honest on a couple of nights there were some shouty folk loitering outside the hostel/club opposite but in the main it was pretty peaceful, maybe it wouldn't be so much in the height of the Australian summertime. Breakfast wasn't included in our rate and was pretty pricy (hotel breakfast always is) but there were plenty of cafes nearby for breakfast. We opted to go to a nearby supermarket and bought raisin bread and some butter and had that in the mornings if we weren't dining out.

Now for the sights:

My sister, who we went to visit bought us some iVenture cards, which cost $50 and can be used at a number of attractions in Melbourne. We used ours for a one hour Melbourne River Cruise which is usually $23 dollars per adult, as well as entry to Melbourne Aquarium, normally $35, and Old Melbourne Gaol, normally $25 again, so the pass was well worth the money.

The river cruise on the Yarra, departing from Docklands gave us a leisurely start to our trip, the day after we arrived still up to the eyeballs with jetlag, a relaxing one-hour cruise with live commentary and complimentary tea and coffee on board

At the aquarium, a great attraction for kids (or big ones) there's plenty to see in terms of colourful fish, fancy seahorses and sharks, but the highlight for us was the King and Gentoo Penguins. We spent ages watching them eating, swimming and playing, my sister and I were completely giddy!

The Old Melbourne Gaol was an interesting place where you can learn about infamous Australian criminal Ned Kelly, as well and conditions in the gaol, along with the history of the place. You can also opt for the Watchhouse experience, where a prisonguard treats the group present like they're actual criminals including locking you in a cell! That was quite an experience. For this portion, they warn of "adult themes" but there was a couple with a small child in our group so I think the guard toned it down a bit on this occasion.

We also took ourselves to the Immigration Museum, which gives the history of Melbourne in terms of the migrant population that have made the city what it is. The whole museum (and my whole experience in Melbourne) gave me the impression that the attitude in Melbourne is "come on in, there's enough for everybody", which is refreshing when you're faced with bigoted attitudes in Britain about foreigners "coming over here and taking all our jobs". There was an incredible moving photography exhibition called "Leaving Dublin" by Irish photographer David Monahan, about Irish people coming to Australia seeking a better life. Their despair at their current situation and apparent hope of more prosperous times in Australia was really touching,  I am actually welling up just thinking about it. My sister lives in a house with 14 other English and Irish young people, and their views match the tone of the exhibition, they don't feel like there's anything for them at home. If you happen to be visiting Melbourne before 25th August, I recommend it. Entry is $10 per adult, but free for concessions, so my pensioner mum and student sister got in for free. Before going here we went to the Melbourne Visitor Centre at Federation Square and picked up loads of attractions brochures, some of which had coupons inside, so I was able to redeem a 20% off voucher at the museum and paid only $8.

On arrival in Melbourne we found out that the Hollywood Costume exhibition from the V&A was in town, I missed it's London tenure so we went along to that ($19.50 per adult). It was at the ACMI (Australian Centre for the Moving Image) at the incredible Federation Square. It was so incredible to see Vivien Leigh's green curtain dress from Gone with the Wind, Audrey Hepburn's ultimate LBD from Breakfast at Tiffany's and an array of costumes from the Mighty Meryl's back catalogue. The ACMI's permanent exhibition is pretty awesome too with loads of interactive activities for kids and a load on Australian film (Baz Luhrmann, y'all). The Hollywood Costume exhibition remains at the the ACMI until Sunday 18th August.

Hollywood in Melbourne, ACMI

Federation Square
In terms of European exhibitions mum really wanted to check out Monet's Garden, whose work was on display at the National Gallery of Victoria, on loan from Paris. This was a lovely peaceful exhibition, especially the film which depicted the last day of the season at Giverny. we paid $26 each for entry to Monet but the rest of the museum was free entry so we enjoyed checking out the European and Asian art and the small but perfectly formed Dior and Yamamoto exhibition, as well as the Ballet and Fashion exhibit. 

A major trip highlight was a day trip to the Great Ocean Road with AAT Kings. We got the best possible weather that day, it was hot and sunny, perfect viewing conditions. We went through Anglesea, Lorne, Apollo Bay up to the Twelve Apostles and finished at London Bridge in time for sunset. The coach driver gave a lot of information throughout the tour and was very helpful throughout. The tour cost $120 which included lunch at the Apollo Bay Hotel. I wouldn't bother taking the lunch option. It was $21 extra but when we got there we were given menus showing a limited number of dishes from the main menu which were all priced $15-17 each. It was also a bit downmarket and my portion of fish and chips was miniscule, it hardly resembled the luxe surroundings and large tray of succulent prawns displayed in the brochure. The driver mentioned that there were plenty of places to eat in the area for the benefit of those who hadn't had lunch included and we ended up wishing we'd gone for something different.

Regardless of the lunch aspect (to be honest, we ate enough other glorious food across the rest of the trip so it wasn't much of a hardship, yet another post to come on food later!), this was one of the best days, with glorious weather and breathtaking scenery. Here's some snapshots.

On our last full day in Melbourne, we took a trip to Melbourne Zoo ($26.10 per adult) which is just a short train ride away. It was a rainy day, in fact it never stopped, but we got to see some giant things (elephants), fluffy things (bears), some cute things (penguins, seals, meerkats) and some downright scary things (snakes). It was so great seeing the kangaroos, penguins, emus, koalas and platypus and acting like a kid with my sister. That night, as we made our way back to the hotel, we were talking about all the great, Australian things we'd seen on the trip when a possum ran along the wall next to us - FULL HOUSE!

There's so much to see and do in Melbourne, I know there's probably loads more that I haven't even touched on, there's something for everyone in this amazing, multicultural city, I loved every moment.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Melbourne: Shopping

Naturally, I did lots of wonderfully cultural things in Melbourne, but to strike a balance, a lot of window and actual shopping took place too. This post is about some of my shopping highlights.

Cotton On is a great, good value store with branches everywhere, similar to our H&M (there's no Hennes in Australia). While I was there I got some great items, including two gorgeous jackets, Zino and Claudine (I got my Claudine in mint green, I can't find it on the site). Zino was marked at $40 but was $20 when  got it to the till, and now the site says it's $5! Claudine was also $20 but is still $40 on the site. I am tempted by Zino in red too, as I've just found out they ship to the UK for $40!

This snood/scarf in khaki was also offered at $5 along with any purchase which is super soft and comfortable and was very useful to retreat into when we landed at 6am in London.


Cotton on Body is part of the group, but usually a separate physical store selling underwear and sleepwear, there I got some gorgeous PJ shorts including these sailing boat cuties for $10, and another couple of pairs at 2 for $30.

Typo is also part of the Cotton On group, selling cute stationery and gifts, you'll find branches all over the place. I also heart kikki.K, which falls into the same category.

Some of the best shopping in Melbourne is on Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. There I got this gorgeous lasercut wallet from i.d.s. It's a wallet with a chain strap, so can be used as a bag for a night out too, it'd look great with an otherwise plain outfit. I love it!
i.d.s wallet
Also on Brunswick Street were loads of quirky gift shops and some huge clothes warehouses including Clear It selling tonnes of discounted Alannah Hill dresses. I fell in love with one, and now I am seriously regretting not buying it, although I've just found it on eBay...maybe I will enquire about postage costs...
Alannah Hill Everlasting Love
Hours of trawling to be had on Brunswick Street

There was also loads of vintage wares to be had at Hunter Gatherer, if only I'd had a bigger luggage allowance!
Hunter Gatherer Vintage
I also fell in love with T2 teashop, visiting the stores on Brunswick Street and at Melbourne Central, an awesome shopping centre. I asked one of the shop assistants and he said that T2 is hopefully coming to the UK in the next year, with a store opening at one of the London Westfield centres. When it does I am buying ALL DAT china, I am in love with the Casbah Collection! I make a point of buying some tea in a nice tin wherever I go, so treated myself to Babi's Brilliant Blend, pictured below. I love the cute tin, I would have bought the whole range!
Afternoon Tea
Babi tea

There's also Chapel Street, a reeaaaally long street in Prahran/Windsor, which is chocka with opp shops (charity shops) where there are many cheap treasures to behold. There's Chapel Street Bazaar, a haven of antiques and vintage clothing for all price ranges. We went to Chapel Street on day one, still up to the eyeballs with jetlag, but as soon as I clapped eyes on the Bazaar and the opp shops, I knew I was going to love Melbourne! Chapel Street is also chocka with restaurants and cafes, but that's a whole other post!

Chapel Street Bazaar
Melbourne Central
My Directory:
For vintage and charity shops: Chapel Street
For alternative fashion and cool gifts: Brunswick Street
For High Street stores: Melbourne Central
For Designer/Top End gear (not featured much on this blogpost as it ain't my budget baby!): David JonesMyer, Collins Street
For souvenirs: Queen Victoria Market, cheaper than the souvenir shops on Swanston Street!

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Melbourne: In my Beauty Bag

I have just returned from a wonderful holiday in Melbourne, and this is the first of many posts about my trip. I returned yesterday morning, so am still a little jetlagged, so lets start with the basics: what I took with me!

I've probably mentioned before my efforts to destash my bathroom cabinets, so I bought as little as possible for my trip, choosing to take with me a few half finished goodies so that I could throw them out once and for all. This resulted in an empty L'Occitane Precious Cream and one Eucerin Hyaluron Filler Day Cream, both lovely rich face creams. I particularly like the Eucerin product because it contains SPF15, but I am not particularly loyal to any one brand when it comes to moisturiser so will continue to hunt around for the best for me. I've still got my Ainhoa and Avon night oil to work through for now but am always looking for recommendations for a good all-rounder, so do let me know if you've got any tips.

Just before my trip, I popped to the Boots Get Out There (#Bootsgetoutthere) event for bloggers which gave a great overview of the products on hand from Boots this summer, that are there to help you look and feel your best this summer s that you 'get out there' and enjoy yourself in the summer sun! It was a great showcase of the products available to help you feel confident and safe this summer. I took away with me some Soltan Protect & Tan Ultra-Light Texture Suncare Spray to trial on my trip, and I have to say it's a great product, completely non-greasy, easy to apply, with real protection, and it's half price at the moment along with some other great products in the range! Its slimline bottle also meant it was easy to carry around for reapplication during the day.
Soltan goodies on display
 Another favourite of mine was the Boots No7 Stay Perfect nail colour in Stand Back, which I applied on day one of my trip. It actually did 'Stay Perfect' well into the second week of my trip, and the fun shade also went fabulously with my sandals (Primark 2011)! A steal at £6.

No7 Stand Back
When I wear sandals or flip flops for the first time after a few months of hiding my feet away, they are horribly prone to blisters again, no matter how comfy those same sandals had become the previous year. When we landed at Melbourne, my toes were horribly blistered already from the ancient flip-flops I'd been wearing. The weather wasn't so hot on that first Sunday so as soon as I got into my hotel I wrapped them up in my Converse and let them heal. When I wanted to wear sandals again, I sprayed my feet quickly with Boots Blister Prevent Spray for the first couple of wears, and remained blister-free for the remainder of the trip. I'd definitely recommend this spray to keep the blisters at bay, at £5.49, it's worth it to save that agony!

These are some products that will be sticking with me all summer, I am looking forward to hearing about more great products that have impressed you this summer too....

Sunday, 28 April 2013


After a mental week at work, 3 days of which were spent at a trade show with loads of booze and naughty food, I was ready to crash this weekend. But I already knew that this wasn't going to be the case, owing to a girl's night out we'd planned ages ago.

In an attempt to spend some time with the Boy before I go to Australia (5 days and counting), we went to Angel in the morning to do some shopping. I needed some toiletries for my trip so popped to Boots and got some L'Oreal Elvive Full Restore 5 shampoo and conditioner, which were half price for the 400ml bottles, and some Nivea Happy Time shower gel, which was just 97p a bottle, so cheap and cheerful for me as always. We checked out a couple of opticians, I'd had an eye test the day before at Specsavers and had been told I need new glasses so wanted to shop around.. Below are my current favourites, although I also want to check out the Orla Kiely range at Boots.
Karen Millen 12
We spotted a branch of Bill' on White Lion Street, I didn't know it was there so I think it's fairly new (they seem to be popping up all over the place). I've wanted to check out Bill's for a while, so we popped in and got seated straight away, and told that breakfast was being served til 1pm (it's 12noon on weekdays). I opted for the vegetarian breakfast and Boy had the sausage sandwich, with a side of bacon and cauliflower cheese from the main menu.
Bill's vegetarian breakfast 
Bill's decor, Islington
I loved my breakfast. I am not a vegetarian, I am generally very carnivorous indeed but the description got me (poached free range eggs, tomatoes, hummus, mushrooms & guacamole, sweet chilli sauce, basil 
& toast) and I was not disappointed. I got additional bubble and squeak with mine, and we got a coffee each too. The bill came to just under £25 including 12.5% service charge which we were happy to pay as the service was great. A nice touch at Bill's is that they give you a carafe of tap water without it having to be asked for, I get so fed up with snotty looks elsewhere when you request tap water. Bill's branches have selection of handpicked deli products in store, all of which can be bought online too, along with the cookbook Cook Eat Smile which I now have my eye on after flicking through it in the store, it's a beautiful book.
Cook Eat Smile

We also went to H&M, where I got two great tops for just £9. This black number was £7.99, but 50% off (also in white, khaki and blue).
Black lace top, £7.99

This beautiful cream glittery top was marked down to £10, but when I got it to the till it was just £5! I can't find it on the website, so here's my picture below. Two tops for £9, I am still marvelling!
Mega bargain top
After shopping, I headed home and started working on my hair. I have long straight brown hair, which I wear in two styles. Up (in a ponytail). Or Down. I wanted to try something different, and inspired by Sienna Miller, I went for a plaited headband approach. An hour and many kirby grips later, it was achieved, here's me with my friend A. I wore the new black top with a blue boob tube top underneath, with black jeans and flat pumps

A and I had an amazing night at Koko, Camden. It was a Guilty Pleasures night, so the music was loads of amazing cheese and we had a really good dance. I loved it, though had one two many Skittlebombs and Jagerbombs. Taking all those kirby grips out on the night bus home was a wonderful feeling!

Today should be a lazy day, but I never sleep well after booze, so awoke around 7:30 (didn't go to bed til 3:30, ouch) then wandered to the shops again. I needed some new sunglasses so picked up some £5 jobbies from M&S, I am forever breaking them so I don't spend a lot of money on them, I have been known to get through 5 pairs in a month. I popped to our local car boot which is on every weekend and got 5 of the Game of Thrones books for 20p each for the Boy before going to Tesco to stock up our fridge. I am currently baking the Hummingbird Bakery Buttermilk Pound Cake and the chicken is marinading for tonight's Starlight Spicy Chicken Wraps. Who said hungover Sundays had to be dead time?!

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The Look of Love

I've had a bit of a blog hiatus for the last couple of weeks...I was ill, then was out every night for a week and a half, it's been lovely catching up with friends and family, but tonight, a night in front of the sofa after a long day at Earl's Court with work, I finally have some downtime! Last night, we went to see The Look of Love which was fantastic, and inspired me to finally update my blog!

The film stars Steve Coogan, Tamsin Egerton and Anna Friel and is about the life of Paul Raymond, who was Britain's richest man, who is an "erotic entrepreneur" but absolutely not a pornographer, so he says..... The women are gorgeous, Anna Friel as Jean Raymond, Paul's long-suffering wife, Tamsin Egerton as his lover and Imogen Poots as his daughter.

I've only seen Egerton in St Trinian's before, and dismissed her as a bratty teen actress and didn't think I'd be seeing much of her again, but in this film she is incredible as well as beautiful. Anna Friel is stunning and glamourous as always (I love Pushing Daisies!), and Imogen Poots is gorgeous and tragic all at the same time. There are tonnes of other famous faces, Simon Bird, Stephen Fry (he who gets a gazillion retweets no matter how inane his 140-character rambling), Sarah Solemani and Shirley Henderson to name but a few.
Imogen Poots

Anna Friel

Tamsin Egerton

Queen Dusty
There is a LOT of sex, and a lot of boobies in this film, but despite the content and theme, it's actually all pretty tasteful. The styling is also brilliant, from the show costumes, minimal as they are to the outfits that Friel and Egerton strut around in, I am truly seventies-inspired now, with the Dusty Springfield filled soundtrack going on and on in my head!

As an aside, holiday countdown: 10 days til i fly to MELBOURNE!!! I saw Royal Brunei Airlines poster for the London - Melbourne route earlier on the tube and nearly died of excitement, in no time at all I am going to be On That Flight. EEEEEEEEK!

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Tired of London...As if

Spring has sprung, the sun is out, I am as happy as can be! Yesterday I had an absolutely lovely, lovely day with one of my besties, Laurel. After a leisurely start to the day with the boy, and a trip to the post office to post my latest book swaps and get him some Euros for his trip to Belgium, I headed over to Liverpool Street to meet lovely Laurel and check out Judy's at Spitalfields to check out the wares. We didn't buy anything on this occasion but did grab an amazing peanut butter cupcake from Betty-Lou's Bakery which we devoured between us, simply stunning! The next Judy's at Spitalfields is 4th May.
Pillow fight in Trafalgar Square

We got the tube to Temple and had a coffee, before heading to the National Gallery via Trafalgar Square where there was a massive flash-mob pillow fight going on! Much fun to behold. We soaked up some culture in the National Gallery, we'd never been before, I didn't know how the stunning it is inside with its glorious ceilings, we got told off for trying to take photos, but here's a snippet from Flickr....check it out!

We wandered up to the Japan Centre, then checked out Paxton and Whitfield on Jermyn Street, one of the oldest cheese shops in London, which is incredible. We then spent a good hour in Waterstones on Picadilly ogling the fiction, art, travel and craft books.

The main reasons for getting together this fine weekend were to go to Judy's, and then to go to the Clueless Quote-Along at Prince Charles Cinema, so we grabbed our tickets before enjoying a Cafe Rouge dinner complete with vino. There's currently a deal on O2 Priority Moments to get one main meal and a second for £1, so we took advantage of this, I had their Poulet Breton and Laurel the Aubergine Gratin, delicious! On the subject of the O2, there's also a deal to get a free bag of Percy Pigs in Marks and Spencers, just buy showing them a code, get them before they're gone!

After more wine at LVPO (happy hour 5-9!) we headed to the cinema, full of excitement for the film. We met two other like-minded ladies who kindly took this photo of us (below), and Laurel and Jess took part in the competition they had at the start, where Laurel came away with Stranger Than Fiction on DVD. The film was amazing, if you're a Clueless fan (and who isn't?!) I would highly recommend going along to the next one on 31st May, so much fun! Next on the list is Anchorman.
Today I checked out Capital Car Boot in Pimlico, it was a lovely day for it. I didn't buy anything, but I would go back. It's £1 entry and there's a decent split between traders and people genuinely clearing out their homes, so while nothing to catch my eye this time, there were plenty of bargains to be had. It was such a nice day so I wandered around and ended up at the Southbank where I text my boss to tell her how aaazing Clueless was, and she invited me around for a cuppa as she only lives down the road. We ended up going straight back out for a spot of brunch at Ev's nearby which was incredible. We both had a eggs with feta, soooo tasty, it comes with a coffee and delicious bread so was a snip at £4.95, highly recommended.
Eggs at Ev's
It's so easy to get stuck in a bit of a rut in life and falling into the trap of going to work, spending the evenings at home and wasting weekends away. Now that it's summertime (sort of) I am determined to make the most of the extra hours sunlight, and being in London. We talked a lot yesterday about all the things we wanted to do this summer, like go to Burger and Lobster, check out the Museum of Childhood, go on a boat trip along the Thames, spend an afternoon in the bookshops of Charing Cross Road, head to Kew Gardens and Richmond... What's on your to-do list this summer?

Monday, 1 April 2013

A foodie Easter

Easter and the week leading up to it has been a lazy one. I still had the remainder of a bad cold last weekend when I locked myself out on Sunday afternoon when doing the food shop (Boy went out while I was out shopping, I hadn't taken my key), so two extra hours in the cold made my cold come back with a vengeance. I worked on Monday but was good for nothing, so spent Tuesday and Wednesday in bed, dosed up with Day Nurse, chicken soup and as much Vitamin C I could soak up.

I've been trying really hard to eat better in general and look after myself, so I am less susceptible to these things. I've recently been obsessed with The Londoner's recipes. Rosie's Skinny Shrimp Curry, Skinny Spaghetti and Epic Fish Tacos were all on the menu this week. All really easy to make, honestly, the prawn curry is the first curry I've ever made and not stuffed up. I served it up with bulgar wheat, a lower-calorie, higher-fibre alternative to rice.

The skinny spaghetti recipe is basically chilli con carne served with cabbage as spaghetti, which sounds lame but actually works really well and will be something I do a lot more often to save myself from the bloat . The cooking times for that recipe are long, I didn't read it right so had already started cooking when it said "leave for an hour before chucking in... and then leave for a further hour". I didn't. It was already 18:30 and I was already ill, hungry and just wanted to eat. I reduced those times to 20 mins each and it was still tasty as anything. Maybe I will try for the optimum marinations when I have more time. I also made this with turkey mince rather than beef, lower in fat and usually cheaper. The fish tacos...are well, epic. We are having them again tonight, for the 4th time in about 3 weeks, I love them. Cannot get enough, if I was to recommend any of these recipes over the others, it would be that one.
The Londoner's Skinny Shrimp Curry 
 Luckily I felt better on Thursday, well enough to go back to work, albeit with Day Nurse by my side. A lot is going on at work at the moment so it was hectic, but I made it through the day and came home to make some Easter cookies. My friend had bought me some Easter cookie cutters years ago which I still hadn't got round to using, so we whipped up some biscuits according to the Hummingbird Bakery recipe for Sugar Cookies, and iced them in green (because green was the only food colouring I had).

On Good Friday, we hopped on a train to Burton-On-Trent, to see our friends who recently moved there. Tasha and Martin met through us two years ago, and got married last October. I was a bridesmaid, and the Boy an usher at their wedding last year, but time and distance means we don't get to see each other nearly enough. This Easter, we rectified this with a lazy weekend of food, drink and laughs in the Midlands.

Nacho preparation, accompanying Fajita Friday
Martin's incredible burgers.
The best roast dinner I've ever eaten.
Besides eating, there was much drinking to be done, and napping, and watching Disney films (Fantasia and Beauty and The Beast were our choices). We caught up, snuggled, played Cranium and laughed til our faces hurt. Luckily Martin and Tash have this furry fella, Roger, otherwise we'd not have moved at all all weekend.
The River Trent at Washlands
A walk along the canal (finished off with a pint or two of course)
 We've just got back to London, and I feel relaxed and rejuvenated, but also indulged and a little bit chubbier. Back to walking to work tomorrow and a little bit of holding back to deflate my waistline! Easter brought with it the start of good old British Summer Time, and while there's still a definite chill in the air (and in some parts still snow on the ground) when I turned myself to the sun yesterday I definitely felt some warmth and it felt good. I had even come out in freckles by the time I go to a mirror! Time to stop hibernating and get outside and start living!