Thursday, 30 January 2014

Green Magma Magic

So, the new year, new healthy living isn't going quite to plan.   The intentions are still there - I'm still swimming every day and generally still eating less refined, more natural, good-for-you foods.  I just can't give up cake.  Or Dairy Milk.  

I don't know how I've never written about our green miracle - especially banging on about my health kick a few weeks ago.   But it's actually drinking it every morning that makes me feel we could eat anything and get away with it.  It's that magic.  It was recommended to us by the wizardly Mr Lee - and now we, and my whole family, are obsessed with it.  You drink it every morning - wait 20 minutes before eating anything and then carry on as normal.  Full of  antioxidants, chlorophyll, active enzymes, vitamins - if I carry on you'll switch off - but you get the idea.  It's an energy giving, digestion sorting, ph balancing, metabolism supporting miracle that I can't get enough of.  

I promise I dont secretly work for them and if you want to read all about the technicalities of how it actually works, click here.

Terrible Twos

Our usually sweet, funny and happy smallest Cub has been possessed.  Or had a secret personality transplant without me knowing.  Suddenly, over night, he's turned into a tyrant.  An actual small prince of darkness.  Chaz and I are at a total loss.  I was even googling that super nanny at 3am last night while said monster was screaming like his life depended on it while trying to kick down his door at the same time.  Fast forward three hours  and he locked himself into his bedroom.  The bigger Cub managed to sweet talk him out after a half an hour stand off and he emerged, crosser and louder than ever. 
 I know that the two stage is meant to be terrible, but does it really happen, just that like, the minute they turn two?
I guess him flinging himself out of his cot on the morning of his second birthday was his warning that things were going to change around here;  There would be no more Mr Nice Guy.  No more sleeping, no more doing what asked and no more eating anything unless sugar-coated or Pom Bear shaped. 

This morning we have upped our game.  No Peppa Pig watching and no warm milk until he stays in his bed for more than two hours straight.  It is 8.30 am and we have already had eight tantrums and six time outs. Even poor Alice (our tiny dog) is cowering in the corner, quivering at the prospect of the next tyrannical outburst.  The silver lining - one must always look for a silver lining - is that the bigger Cub is loving his little brother's new dog house behaviour.  As I write he is sitting very quietly and  very smugly on the sofa.  Smiling to himself and chirping up every couple of minutes to ask me just how sweet and how well behaved he is.  Long may that last...

Monday, 27 January 2014

Sabine G

This week's obsession is the work of Sabine G.  The most ravishingly beautiful rings I've seen in a long time.  Ive been wracking my brains all weekend trying to come up with a way of making a quick few thousand pounds.

It's her second collection, Harelequin that's really sending me into a spin; a mix of art deco styles made with rainbow coloured gems.  

Thursday, 23 January 2014

A Dog a Day

I had a very exciting book meeting with the wonderful team at Anthropologie yesterday.  More about that another time but  obviously while I was there I had to pop into the store for a quick look.  When in Rome.  They have a small gallery off one side of the shop with wonderful exhibitions that change every month. This month's show is called 'A dog a day' by Sally Muir.  The walls are jam packed with her collection of paintings -a year long venture where she painted a different dog every single day.
It's running until tuesday 18th February and definitely worth a look, dog lover or not.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Career Meltdown

I'm having a bit of a career-mid-life-crisis. I woke up on January 1st, excited.  Excited about my work and what I was going to do next.  My second book is about to come out and I was determined that this would be the last year of earning so little I don't have to pay tax. And now I've hit a wall.  We went away last week to Canouan, a heavenly Caribbean island, where I was sure I would come up with a game plan.  I would come home clear headed and sorted, raring to go.  Instead, I feel more disillusioned and confused than ever.  My brain has frozen.  Hence no posts for the last two weeks.  

My problem is that there are too many things that I want to do and I can't decide what to commit to.  I flit in and out of love with the idea of each one on a daily basis.    I feel the time has come to make an actual decision.  So the choices are; interior styling or floristry.   Or completely changing tack by starting up a shop or cafe.

Ideally I'd like to combine everything. Ideally, a nice billionaire would back me and I'd rent a beautiful, white-washed, airy, light filled space and set up an all in one cafe, gallery, shop, florist and office- where I'd work on interior projects.  And  write book number three. And ideally, it would be a success. Chaz tells me it's impossible to make money in retail these days. Unless your name is Philip Green. And this is where the problem lies. Maybe an accountancy course might be a better place to start.  
On that note, I think it's time to go back to burying my head in the sand…


Dreamy shop inspiration

Friday, 3 January 2014

New Year, New Start

I know talking about detoxing and clean living in January is a bit obvious.  I've actually never done it before and usually, come January 1st, find myself very happily, knee deep in Quality Streets, a million miles away from anything remotely healthy.  This time though I have a real urge to clean up my act.   

To cut a very long story short, after years of endless doctors and neurologists appointments, six months ago, Chaz gave up on traditional medicine and took himself off to see a Chinese doctor;  A magical man called Mr Lee who lives in Uxbridge.  We didn't have a lot of hope and thought he would probably send him packing with some 'magic' herbs.  Instead, he put him on the world's strictest diet for two, long months.  He was allowed no sugar, no diary, no yeast, no alcohol, no gluten and no fruit.  Basically nothing remotely enjoyable.  It would actually be quicker to list the foods he was allowed to eat.
It totally transformed him - mentally and physically and so far, touch wood, his mystery pains are no where to be seen.

We then went to a wedding this New Years Eve where I met a nutritionist.  She gave me a mini consultation telling me what I should and shouldn't be eating and funnily enough it was pretty much the same as what Mr Lee had said.  Her parting words were for me to have a look at the website Deliciously Ella

Feeling more than a little worse for wear on January 1st I logged on and have not looked back since. I am well and truly hooked. The oh-so-beautiful Ella Woodward was diagnosed with Postural Tachycardia Syndrome in September 2011 and after six months of traditional medicine not helping she decided to turn to holistic, natural methods instead.   Changing her diet over night, she cut out meat, sugar, diary and gluten - anything processed and full of chemicals.  She truly believes that it is eating this way that has given her life back, leaving her full of energy and pain free. 

I thankfully, am not ill but am quite keen to keep it this way so this year, I am going to try to follow some kind of diet loosely based on ideas taken from both Ella and Mr Lee.  
As I write there are two enormous tins of Quality Street winking at me from across the room;  it's the no sugar part that I'm going to really struggle with.  I'm going to start off now by making raw brownies with this recipe of Ella's.

I'll keep you posted!