Sunday 30 January 2011

Birthday Charity Shop Purchases

A belated thank you for all the lovely birthday messages and hello to my latest followers! I’m looking forward to settling down this evening with a hot chocolate and reading and commenting on everybody’s blogs. I’ve been super busy this week getting together things for yesterday’s Bicycle Basket Bazaar, finishing off bits for the Spread the Bloggy Love Swap and of course, charity shopping.
The Bicycle Bazaar was lovely as usual, despite a few familiar faces missing and it not being very busy. I met the lovely Linda of TabbyRoo and her beautiful daughters Tabby and Ruby. Both Linda and I were having a January clear out doing everything for £1 and although we bought a few bits from each others stalls we managed to resist buying everything off each other and going home with more than we arrived with.

My mum bought me a gorgeous Royal tin from Linda’s stall and I bought a vintage annual and 40s/50s dress. The dress is beautiful but needs a few repairs so I’ll be off to my local seamstress to see what she can do with it later in the week. My mum also bought me these cute little people from Kayleigh. I bought the tiny geisha last time and love the detail that has gone into these dainty pieces. They were only £1 each so I’m going to buy a different character each time I go to the Bazaar.

I was so excited to find the vintage hair salon Aurora Loves now open in The Fishmarket. I’ll now be cancelling my appointment at my usual hairdressers and booking in for a cut, colour and up do at Aurora Loves. The salon’s lovely, with vintage mirrors, beauty adverts and bits and pieces. I’m hoping for a victory roll to see if it suits me but I’m also tempted with the Liz Taylor hairstyle below.

I think I’m getting a bit ahead of myself in both stakes to be honest as I’m still growing my hair so it may not be long enough for either style. Also, I think I have this vision of being Liz Taylor once I have her hair and clearly that’s not going to happen. Hmm.

Thursday’s charity shop jaunt was interesting as I went to an area I’d never been to before. I really should focus on going to ‘deprived’ areas rather than affluent ones as although some of the pieces I saw were beautiful and fab quality, they were soooo overpriced. Some of the newer items they were selling could be bought for cheaper brand new from their original shop. Ridiculous. Well that didn’t’ stop me splashing out. I can’t resist vintage china, even when it is overpriced, and I came away with all this.

I stopped of at my local tip shop on the way home and picked up some very cheap and cheerful bits and pieces and also popped into a new charity shop. Everything in there was priced like an antique dealership but I struck lucky with these pieces as they didn’t have a price on them so the man serving me plucked the prices out of thin air. £3 for the 50s Dartmouth vase/planter and £3 for the gorgeous milk jug and tea pot. A few minutes on eBay later on told me that the jug and teapot are from 1909 and are relatively valuable. Not that I bought them for their value, I bought them because they’re beautiful and they’ll be staying with me.

Sunday 23 January 2011

Monthly Make

I managed to resist going to the carboot sale today as I can quite easily spend £30 to £50 before I know it. Instead I’m going to try and do some eBay listings of two pairs of lush Topshop platforms that I have to part with. I absolutely love them but it’s a bit silly to keep hold of shoes that are too big isn’t it? Plus if I sell them then maybe I could use the funds to scour eBay for the same pairs but in the size smaller? I’ve always been between shoe sizes but now that I’m losing weight it’s getting even worse and I think I might even be a size 5 ½ now instead of a ‘I’m a bit smaller than a 6’.

Picture by Beryl Cook. I love her work
On the weight loss front I’ve now officially lost 1 ½ stone so I’m really pleased. It’s a bit odd suddenly fitting into clothes I haven’t been in for ages as my weight loss seems to have happened really fast and I kind of feel like I’ve lost more in inches than I have in pounds. I’m going to ask my aunt to measure me during the week so I’ll be boring you all to death with how many inches I’ve lost sometime this week.

At the beginning of January I signed up to The Felt Fairy’s Monthly Make and since I’m not particularly good at crafting I thought I’d stick to something nice and simple. I made a few sewing cases from different coloured felt and then embroidered them or embellished them with stars etc in contrasting colours. I love felt as I don’t have to hem it and it makes for nice and easy craft projects. Like I said, I’m not a great crafter and therefore I like to do not only simple things, but short things, otherwise my crafting gets abandoned halfway through. I’m not sure what I’ll do with these, maybe save them for Christmas and Birthday presents for the family.

P.S. Lily says ‘Hi’ from her bed….the millionth ‘bed’ she’s made today. God knows where she thinks she’s having these ‘puppies’ of hers because so far she’s got the sofa, my bed, a bed on the craft room floor, a pile of washing waiting to go into the machine and, last but not least, her own bed, to choose from!

Saturday 22 January 2011

Goodies Galore & Lily Update

Last week I received these lovely goodies in the post from the gorgeous Vix of Vintage Vixen. She knows me so well! A pair of handsome Scotties (these had belonged to her Mum and I feel very privileged that she’s passed them onto me), kitsch and cute weeble style toy, pretty vintage tin and a Queen’s Coronation badge (she knows how much I love the Royals and any Royal vintage memorabilia).

The Scottie boys (I don’t know why I’ve decided they’re boys) are sat in my living room and the tin, badge and weeble girl are sat on my craft room bookcase display along with all some of my other treasured bits and pieces. Thanks so much Vix! She also sent me this card, haha.

Thanks for all your lovely comments wishing Lily a speedy recovery. We’ve been to the vets today and her wound is healing really well, BUT she’s having a phantom pregnancy. Now there had been some subtle changes in Lily’s behaviour over the past month but the vet and I both agree that since she is such a ‘character’ (ie. Odd bod) that it was difficult for either of us to tell whether there was something wrong with her or whether she was just being, well, odd. There were no physical signs of anything but the vet warned me that some of the behaviour I’d described could point to a phantom pregnancy, but that the behaviour in most dogs was very pronounced and that in Lily’s case there were very subtle signs that could just be down to her getting more comfortable in her still relatively new environment.

I'm going to start calling her Ermintrude now she produces milk and eats grass
Fast forward to today and she’s not only ‘nest’ building like there’s no tomorrow (I haven’t slept properly all night because my bed and me are part of that nest) but she’s also producing milk. Apparently spaying doesn’t stop the ‘pregnancy’ if it’ started before the spay as all the hormones and brain signals have already been sent. She’s now costing me a small fortune in tablets and a follow up visits and since I haven’t been paid yet I embarrassingly had to hot foot it to my mum’s to borrow the money.

Image from
She’s now happily nest building but I feel so sorry for her preparing for pups when she won’t be having any. No wonder her favourite toys at the moment are her tiny Westie and Labrador teddies, although she hasn’t been gentle with them like most ‘expectant mothers’. Instead she’s been shaking them about like terriers do when they kill rats. Hmm, it’s probably for the best that she won’t be having any pups if that’s how she’d be treating them.

Have a good rest of the weekend xxx

Friday 21 January 2011

Stylish Blogger Award: 7 Things

*Written Yesterday*

Thanks for all your lovely well wishes for Lily! She’s feeling a bit better today but she’s a real baby and cried all night and some of today so I’ve taken my mums advice and been slipping her a baby’s dose of children’s Calpol on cheese. She has painkillers from the vets but they didn’t seem to be helping her enough and the Calpol hasn’t killed her so I’ll give her another spoon before bed. She’s had lots of kisses and cuddles and is enjoying being lifted onto her favourite candlewick blanket on the sofa.

A few days ago the lovely Beth at Deer Little Fawn  gave me the Stylish Blogger Award. Thank You Beth! I now need to:

1.Thank and link back to the person who awarded you.
2.Share 7 things about yourself
3.Award 15 bloggers
4.Contact these bloggers and tell them about this award.

Now I’ve really struggled to think of seven things about me that I haven’t already told you in other award posts so excuse me if I bore you all to death!

1) I have two tattoos, a swallow on my wrist and 3 stars on my foot. The swallow on my wrist is a fine line tattoo and is very delicate but the stars on my foot are quite bad quality and I’m thinking of having them covered or incorporated into a tattoo of lilies when I reach my goal weight.

2) I love reading but I find it really difficult to read regularly because when I read I like to read the whole book in a day. I’m getting into the habit of reading a bit of a book each night before bed but still struggle with it. At the Moment I’m reading New Moon, the second book in The Twilight Saga.

3) I’m a total wimp when it comes to heels. I find any height really uncomfortable and only wear them when I go out for a proper night out. Even then I moan the whole time so my friends always tell me to wear ballet pumps.
But that doesn't stop me from owning lots of heels
4) My favourite meal is sausage, eggs, chips and beans but obviously I can no longer eat it with my gastric band. My new favourite food is falafel with homous and tzatziki and this I can eat in a very small amount.

5) I’m ridiculously organised and a bit OCD. Oh ok, a lot OCD. I put it down to my Aspergers but I think it could just be my personality. Everything has to be in its right place and if possible I like things on display so I know what I’ve got. My friends call my house ‘The Shop of Amy’ as they think everything’s displayed like a shop. If can’t find something I get really stressed and my best buy ever was a vintage key cabinet that now houses all of my jewellery. Very orderly n everything’s on display!

6) I love chocolate, but am much more of a Cadbury’s girl than a Thornton’s or Hotel Chocolat one. I’ve never liked more expensive chocolate and am happy with a plain old Dairy Milk. Yum yum!

7) I love flowers and my favourite of the garden variety are forget me nots and daisies. In terms of flowers in a vase my favourite are white Lilies, apparently the ‘flower of death’ but really representing ‘purity’.

I’m now passing this onto:
An Alien World
Hesta & the Pugs
Ivy Black Chat
Lady Cherry
The Story of a Girl Who Lives Above Her Means
Penny Dreadful Vintage
Scrappy Jacky
Winnibriggs House
Diary of a Tinyholder
Andi’s English Attic
Fraggle Cats
How Soon is Now
The Vintage Gardener
Ticking Stripes

Looking forward to hearing more about you all! xxx

Wednesday 19 January 2011

Playing Nurse

I finished work early today to pick up my baby girl (Lily Dog) from the vets after she’d been spayed and micro chipped. She’s feeling very sorry for herself and hasn’t managed to walk yet. I helped her off the sofa onto the floor to eat some of her scrambled egg, and her little legs slipped all over the place like Bambi on ice. She’s back on the sofa now resting and I’ve just taken her pink bandage off that was covering where she’d had her canular. I know she’s only had a standard procedure and she’ll be fine but I hate seeing her look so tired and poorly.
Excuse the terrible pic quality. My camera's playing up

This evening I was planning on doing a post about the lovely parcel I received from Vix during the week, but Lily gets all restless if I go upstairs so I can’t take any pics of the lovely parcel goodies at the mo. That post will have to be for tomorrow. I think Lily and I will have an early night and she can get comfy on her favourite side of the bed while I read a few more chapters of New Moon. I love the films but the books are fab and very addictive.

Hope everyone’s having a lovely week, Amy xxx

Monday 17 January 2011

Fab Charity Raffle

When you get chance head over to Sian's blog at Diary of a Tiny Holder! Not only is she a lovely lady with a fab blog, but she's been a busy bee holding blog raffles and opening a 'Charity Shop' on her blog to raise money for the Alzheimer's Society! The raffle's full of lovely Cath Kidston goodies and tickets are only £1. It's super easy to buy a ticket because you don't even need to move from your seat to search out your debit card, you can pay via Paypal using Paypal of JustGive xxx P.s. I found Sian's blog through Faerie Nuff, so thanks for the heads up!

Sunday 16 January 2011

The 2011 calendar I bought in the sale from arrived this week. There were so many vintagey type calendars to choose from but in the end I settled on this Elvgren wall calendar. My first choice would have been the one featuring various 1950s wallapers but this one had already sold out. The vintage railway poster themed ones were also lovely.

My mum and I took a trip to the tip recycling shop this week and I picked up a few bits and pieces including this old enamel dish and some chipped china plates. I can’t resist pretty china even if it’s chipped or cracked and at some stage I think I’ll put it all to good use by smashing it into smaller pieces and using it for some sort of mosaic.

I also bought this book from the tip recycling shop and it’s really interesting, with lots of great pictures. The vintage wooden egg cups were also from the tip shop and are now sat on a shelf in my spare bedroom.

On Thursday evening I went to a Muscular Dystrophy Campaign fundraising meeting for the new Neuromuscular Centre in Birmingham. I came away with lots of ideas and will be getting myself into gear to get going with them over the next few weeks/months. Before the meeting I went for a meal with my Nan, Granddad, uncle and friend. I shared a Mezze with my granddad (he’d already had some sort of pork belly dish but had room for more) and it was absolutely delicious. Although I love hummus, flatbread, tzatziki and falafel, I’d never had them all together before and didn’t even know mezze’s existed. It’s definitely my new favourite meal and luckily I can eat this kind of thing with my band (excluding the flatbread).

I had my first band fill this weekend which was totally painless and it was fascinating seeing my band on an x-ray and the barium stuff I had to drink going through it. My weight loss had come to a standstill in the last week as with my band no longer tight I had been really hungry and had increased my calorie allowance slightly. I still lost 2lbs in the last week but with my band now nice and tight again and with me back on a diet of liquids and then mushed food for 6 days I’m hoping to lose a decent amount before my birthday night out on February 19th. The only problem is I can’t plan ahead with my outfit as I could lose another 10lbs to a stone by then depending on how good I am. I haven’t even seen any outfits that I like, but perhaps that’s because I’m still looking at clothes and going ‘oh I can’t wear that my hips are too big, my arms are too chubby’, when by the time my birthday night out comes they may not be. Well not as big or chubby anyway.

Sunday 9 January 2011

Tidy House, Tidy Mind

Apologies for not blogging very much this week. It was my first week back at work and I’ve also had a ‘everything needs to sorted, organised and cleaned’ head on. I’ve been busy taking car loads of stuff to the tip, charity shops and stashing stuff in my shed ready to do a carboot sale soon. I’ve also listed a mountain of books on Amazon that my mum had cleared out from her collection, super cleaned the car (for the first time in 9 months, oh the shame), bathed and brushed Lily (she was vey unimpressed) and put a picture up that my Mum bought in the sale and I then bought off her.
A very close up Lily looking all shiny after her bath and brush
I think it was from Wilkinson’s and isn’t fab quality, but its fine for a tenner and fills a space in the living room nicely. I tried to get a pic with my fireplace and everything in it but it’s so lovely and sunny in my living room today I couldn’t.
What with my sorting and cleaning head on I’ve been far to busy to head to the Rob Ryan exhibition and although I would have liked to go, I really needed to get on with sorting as I knew it would make my mind feel ‘tidier’ if you know what I mean.

I went carbooting last Sunday and picked up some nice bits and bobs considering there weren’t many sellers. I haven’t photographed them all as everything has of course been tidied away! I bought a few old tins for 50p each, some Beryl Wood’s Ware utility plates £1 for the lot, a Wood’s Ware utility jug in Jasmine 50p, some brightly patterned boots for £2, a pair of adorable Scottie dog book ends £4 and a crocheted blanket which I’ve put to use on a chair in the living room that Lily sits on and covers in mud. The blanket will be so much easier to wash than taking the whole cover off. The man had a few of the mini crochet blanket and I wish I’d bought them all now for only a pound a piece.

On Friday night my friend Lisa and I headed over to our best friend’s for a girlie sleepover. I think it’s probably the first one we’ve had since school, not counting the usual crashing at each others houses after a night out. It was lovely and we ate lots of yummy samosas, bhajis and kebab things, not to mention popcorn, cheese and biscuits and left over Christmas chocs (I’m due for my band to be filled next week so it’s a bit loose at the mo, but I was straight back on the wagon the next day). We watched some stand up comedy DVDs, Twilight and Mean Girls and finally fell asleep at 6am, followed by an early morning flurry of ‘My work phone’s going, I don’t bloody work weekend’s!’, ‘Omg, I’ve gotta be at my little brother’s football match NOW!’, ‘Ugh, I’ve got work in an hour’. I was lucky not to have to be anywhere and after picking Lily up from my mum’s, headed home to watch sky plus.

Chair: Ikea, the curtains are Laura Ashley and were a must have when I bought my house. I managed to pick up a matching blind from a carboot sale for almost nothing and it fits my small living room window perfectly. Fate and destiny obviously!
I hope everyone’s having a lovely weekend! I’m off to have a relaxing bath, put fresh pjs on and sit down with my Sublime Stitching embroidery transfer patterns. I haven’t crafted for so long and I can’t wait x

Mr Scottie propping up some vintage annuals

Saturday 1 January 2011

Resolution, or Aims, Time

Happy New Year everyone! 2010 has been a pretty big year for me. I went to America (NY) for the first time, bought my first house, started my blog, did my first vintage fair/bazaar, had my gastric band and of course got my little dog Lily. I’m a silly doggy person and I can honestly say she has brightened and changed my life. I look at her each day (probably how people look at their children) and think how much I love her. Before I got her my ‘sentimental’ suitcase full of old letters etc was top of my list to save if the house was on fire, now of course it’s her before me.

Anyway, enough of the mad dog lady stuff, how are everyone’s resolutions coming along? For some reason I don’t like the word resolutions so I’m going to call them aims. I’ve made three aims, aside from losing weight and getting healthier because I think they’re probably on everyone’s list every year aren’t they.

1. To pay of the credit cards I opened as a student. In hindsight my uni spending was ridiculous; bottles of champagne ‘because I like it’, £50 bracelets, ‘because it will finish the outfit’ (and make me feel a complete person. Obviously it didn’t), Estee Lauder cosmetics, because again they would make me a complete person. Again they didn’t, and nearly £2000 of savings gone in the first year (probably spent in Topshop). The list goes on. Ridiculous, but we live and learn and I did have a damn good time at uni!

A slimmer me with my old housemate Faye at the Humanities Ball I 'needed' the bracelet for. It's a Lola Rose number and is hidden behind my back.

2. To organise my time better so that I can do more vintage fairs and the like and manage my chronic fatigue as best I can to allow this. Part of this ‘aim’ should also be to get myself into gear and open an eBay shop to continue to thin out my burgeoning vintage collection.

3. If I want to do something or go somewhere then damn well go, even if I have to go on my own. Starting with the Rob Ryan exhibition. Oooh, I’ve just checked and it finishes on the 9th so I best be off to see it on Friday. Obviously this aim is within reason, I mean I can’t just decide to fly off to Australia now can I. Especially not with aim number 1 in mind.