Saturday, 28 January 2012

1st Anniversary Weekend

I can't believe it's already been two whole weeks since Ben and I celebrated our very first wedding anniversary!  We celebrated with a trip to Devon, and most excitingly, an evening at River Cottage. We are both big fans of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, particularly his Fish Fight campaign and his recent Veg TV series and cookbook.

We had originally planned to venture down to Devon for our evening at River Cottage in the summer, but due to "events beyond our control", we had to delay our visit and decided that it would be a lovely way to spend our Anniversary.

We set off on the 3 hour drive first thing on Friday, with another of Hugh's enterprises, Axminster Canteen, on our "must do in Devon" list...  We arrived in plenty of time for lunch and spent a leisurely time enjoying the atmosphere of the light and friendly dining room. We ate entree's of Crab Linguine (me) and Turnip & Rocket Soup (Ben) , followed by Slow Roast Beef with Mash (me) and Oyster Mushroom Ragu with Polenta (Ben).  Given Hugh sources all of his food locally, each dish was ridiculously fresh and so incredibly tasty, i'm still dreaming about my beef more than a week later.  We were drooling over the dessert menu the whole time, but by the time we had finished our two courses, we really couldn't fit another morsel in.  Before we set off again, we spent a little time perusing the deli, taking particular interest in the Palestinian Olive Oil (we had never seen before we had been given a bottle as a xmas gift).  We finally purchased the Veg cookbook and also bought Veg Patch to help us through our second year of 'growing our own'.

definitely tasted loads better than it looked :)

Slow roast flank of beef

Mushroom Ragu

It was back in the car (oh so nice to have a car!), and drove back through the gorgeous Devon countryside to our hotel in the little village of Bridport (which technically is in Dorset, but hey, it's all gorgeous).  Our room wasn't quite ready, so we enjoyed a glass of crisp vino in the sun drenched bar while we waited.  We were finally shown to our room and we were in heaven, the Red Four Poster Room was, true to its name, Red, with a four-posted bed AND a roll top bathtub in the room - sigh!

That evening, we didn't stray far, and had dinner at 'The Stable', the pizza restaurant in the adjoining "old stable block'.  After choosing from the MANY local ciders and ales, we settled at our table to enjoy the buzz of locals and travellers alike enjoying the funky vibe of what I could describe more as a New York hangout than a restaurant in country-England.  Our Fresh Hawaiian and Margherita pizza's were cooked in front of our eyes in the open kitchen and speedily arrived with that awesome charcoal flavour from the fiery pizza oven.

We awoke on the Saturday to a somewhat grey day, and after reading about Saturday being Market Day, we headed out onto the streets to savour the local delights. We tasted a few different things including a 'not so nice' almond croissant (which was more like a lump of stale bread)... an interesting vegan parsnip and lentil muffin and Ben feasted on a vegetarian curry. I decided to wait until we got back to the hotel to eat anything substantial, and i'm glad I did, I ordered the pancakes with fresh berries for Room Service - light and fluffy, with maple syrup and ice-cream - I was a very happy girl!

We then decided to spend the afternoon exploring the local area, and being right on the 'Jurassic Coast' the scenery certainly didn't disappoint.  We decided to head east and took the scenic route (and may or may not have made a couple of 'wrong turns') toward east toward Chesil Beach.  Most of the road is quite high so it was it a glorious view down to the ocean - and with the sun occasionally peeking through the clouds it made for a glorious afternoon sight. As you will see below, it was also quite windy - I pretty much decided to enjoy the views from INSIDE the car after that!

As the sun was getting low in the sky, it was time to head back to the hotel to 'get ready' for the main event, our evening at River Cottage.  Actually, River Cottage is somewhat a casual affair, so we didn't have to spiffy ourselves up TOO much, but we did draw the line at Wellies :)

We started our evening with a glass of bubbles to celebrate the fact that exactly one year ago, we became man and wife! The hotel bar in the evening is incredibly romantic, a REAL wood fire, soft lighting, chilled music - it was a perfect start to our evening.

Then it was into the taxi, and after a 20 minute drive, we finally arrived at the gates of River Cottage.  Unfortunately, because we went in winter, the dark had already set in so we really couldn't see any of Park Farm - except the tractor trailer that we were transported down the farm in! We were escorted straight into cosy fire-lit yurt, where we took a pew on hay bales and were handed a Hot Mulled Cider. As we sipped, canapés were handed around (crab cakes and purple sprouting broccoli of note) as we chatted to our fellow diners.

Once the second tractor-load of guests had settled in, we were escorted into the main dining room.  The seating is along 2 very long communal tables with a pre-determined seating plan (boy-girl-boy-girl etc).  We took our seats between two lovely couples, who we chatted away happily to all evening.  Then the feasting began.

First, more canapé style food, smoked partridge, game sausages (Vege pakora's for Ben) and a lovely beetroot dip served with homemade flat bread and dukkah.

It was at this point that Head Chef, Oliver, came out to talk us through the rest of the evenings feasting...

Smoked "on the premises" Haddock & Cheese soufflé / Chard & Cheese soufflé (v)
Roasted Venison with Parsnip Puree  / Chana Massala (v)
Apple Tarte Tatin w Chantilly Cream
Cheese Board (Brie, Goats, Blue) with Sloe Jam and the most amazing candied nuts i've EVER eaten
Petit Fours (Chocolate Tart & Lemon Creme pancakes with candied peel

At this point we were also invited to venture into the kitchen at some point throughout the evening to see what went on behind the scenes and chat to the chefs (unfortunately we didn't make it in until after dinner, so everything was all clean and packed away - but it was still fun to see).  And with that, Oliver was off to whip-up his egg whites for the soufflé, leaving us to salivate over what was yet to come.

There really isn't much else to say, other than each and every course was absolutely delicious, even the Venison, which was a first for me!  The only problem I had throughout the evening came close to the end, when I was SO FULL I couldn't possibly fit another morsel in - unfortunately I didn't quite make it to the Petit Fours, but Ben assured me they were quite amazing!

our very "deconstructed" cheeseboard!

Needless to say we slept very well that night and haven't stopped reminiscing about it since - it was definitely a night to remember!

The next day, we sadly checked-out of our lovely room, and as we had arrived at River Cottage in pitch black the night before, decided we just had to drive back to River Cottage to see it in daylight.  Unfortunately, you're not really allowed to go down to the farm out of hours, but we did wander down far enough to get a little glimpse of the main buildings and made friends with some sheep along the way.

Not wanting to head straight home, we decided to drive into Lyme Regis as a few people had mentioned it was a nice seaside village.  We spent a couple of wild and very windy hours wandering the promenade and side-streets, but the wind got the better of us and we decided that we couldn't avoid heading back to London any longer...BUT not without a quick stop to one of the many farm shops we had seen along the way to stock on some fresh vege's to take home with us.

Devon, you were amazing, we love you and we hope to see you again soon xxx

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Our Wedding Story - Part 4 - The Happy Ending

It has been ONE WHOLE YEAR since the happiest day of my life.  I've been wanting to write this ever since, but have not quite found the right time to sit down to put it on paper.  In a way, I'm glad I'm only writing this a year on, as it's given me time to reflect on all of the details that made it the amazing story that it is.

Our wedding story is not your traditional wedding story... there was no fairytale proposal, no months and months of the bride flicking through wedding magazines, dreaming up the most wonderful dresses, flowers and table settings, just a humble little story of two people in love, stuck on opposite sides of the world!


We awoke to a relatively clear day, there were a few black clouds looming, but didn't look too threatening so we were confident we wouldn't get rained on.  Ben and I also decided against spending the night apart before the wedding, we had spent so many nights apart on opposite sides of the world, we just couldn't bear another.  However, we did go our separate ways for getting ready in the morning.  I had my hair done quite early, so with the drama of the flowers unfolding I was beginning to get quite nervous - I honestly thought I would be doing my own makeup and going without flowers.  However, after many a frantic phone call, Nancy was on her way.  She made it with less than an hour to spare, so after a lot of time sitting around, it was all hands on deck to get my makeup done, into my dress and then en-route to the beach for the ceremony.

Again, everyone around me was staying very positive and calm, which did help me relax a little, but I must admit the butterflies had well and truly set in.  I managed to get into the car at the same time I was supposed to be walking down the aisle, but I still managed to keep Ben waiting for 20 minutes (in which time he admits he was getting quite nervous, wondering where I was).  But, I made it in the end and after a few photo's, I finally made my way toward my husband-to-be.

The next hour was a whirlwind, seeing Ben's face as I was walking up the aisle, seeing tears being shed by our guests, listening to our Celebrant recite our story, exchanging vows (and no, I didn't quite make it without tears), all the while, Ben and I couldn't let go of each others hands - I really can't describe how special standing on that beach with such an amazing man was - it is a feeling that I will hold with me for the rest of my life.

The rest of the afternoon was just as amazing, more photo's on the beach (with a LOT of attention from intrigued beach-goers), a delicious lunch with LOTS of wine and partying-on into the evening - it was all so relaxed and easy, we couldn't not have had the most amazing day.

A year on and I still get goosebumps thinking about that day, and can't wipe the smile off my face every time I look at our photo's.

I also can't believe how lucky we were, the 2011 Queensland Floods were devastating, many people lost their lives and livelihoods, and a large proportion of the state was ruined.  All I can think is that there was a very bright star watching over us that week and we are incredibly blessed to have been able to share such a special day amidst it all.

However, that wasn't quite the happy ending... Ben still wasn't able to return to the UK with me straight away!!!  I had to leave my husband in Australia while I went back to life in the UK...  After the wedding, we had a mad dash to the Registrar to have our marriage "officially registered" - yes, our paperwork had been caught up in the backlog of mail from the floods, which we then had to courier asap to the visa company in Melbourne for processing.  The drama still didn't end there - due to another what we shall call  "unfortunate incident", even though Ben's Visa was approved within a couple of weeks, the date of entry into the UK wasn't until 1 April.  So it was another excruciating few weeks of being apart - I can't tell you the tears that were cried when we discovered that, it was devastating news.  However, the day finally came and with butterflies running rampant, I was making the journey to the airport one last time, the culmination of everything we had been through over the past 6 months to get to that point, it was all worth it.  Let's just say it was THE MOST emotional reunion you could ever imagine.  And we haven't looked back, and we're also looking forward - starting with quite a lot of travelling this year, and also just enjoying everything that London has to offer us.

The End!

Friday, 13 January 2012

Our Wedding Story - Part 3 - The Lead-Up

It has been almost a year since the happiest day of my life.  I've been wanting to write this ever since, but have not quite found the right time to sit down to put it on paper.  In a way, I'm glad I'm only writing this a year on, as it's given me time to reflect on all of the details that made it the amazing story that it is.

Our wedding story is not your traditional wedding story... there was no fairytale proposal, no months and months of the bride flicking through wedding magazines, dreaming up the most wonderful dresses, flowers and table settings, just a humble little story of two people in love, stuck on opposite sides of the world!

The Lead-Up 

With everything as organised as it could possibly be, I finally boarded my flight in London (rings "in" hand) home to get married.  I left the UK exactly 1 week before the big day and couldn't wait to be in the arms of my new fiancée.  I flew straight into Sydney to spend some time with Ben (and his parents who I would be meeting in person for the first time!!!) before we all flew up to Noosa for the big day.  After spending the morning getting to know each other, Ben and I snuck off for the afternoon to spend some quality alone time together and was the perfect opportunity for Ben to officially propose to me (which happened whilst sitting in the sun on top of a cliff overlooking Bondi beach - perfect!).

It was around this time that things started getting a little worrying as there had been a LOT of rain and river levels had started rising to dangerous levels with the threat of flooding.  We tried not to think about it as we were quite sure all would be OK and Noosa wasn't in direct threat of being affected.

Unfortunately, all wasn't quite OK.  When we flew up to Noosa, we were supposed to spend the first couple of nights with my parents (and would have been the first time I had seen them since flying home) - but this didn't happen as they were stranded on the other side of the now massively flooded river.  Our plan B was to go and stay with friends in Brisbane, but the highway was cut off by the floodwaters.  We had no choice but to book last-minute for a few extra nights into our hotel (not that spending extra nights at the Sheraton Noosa is necessarily a bad thing).  However, once we checked in, we turned on the TV to hear that the floods were the worst to hit since 1974!

As all of our guests lived out of Noosa (and all were cut-off by the floods), we had to start considering whether we would have to postpone the wedding (which was not ideal as timing was everything in organising Ben's visa), or go ahead without our guests (which was even more devastating, no parents, grandparents or best friends).  As you can imagine, we were beside ourselves and this was an impossible decision. 

During this time, everyone remained incredibly positive for us (for which I will be forever grateful), and the more we watched the floods developing on the TV, word started circulating that the levels were nearing their peak and would be beginning to recede in the next day or so.  All we could do was sit and hope.

In this hope that the floodwaters would be receding, we decided that we would go ahead with the wedding, as by the Friday, we would at least have our parents with us, which ultimately was our main concern.  However, I was quite devastated that my grandparents still might not have been able to get through.  I was frantically asking around to see if anyone had a video camera we could borrow so that we could at least record the ceremony that we could still share with them.  As luck would have it, one of my cousins was just starting a wedding video business and offered to film for us.  This was the first wedding he would have filmed, so it was a win-win situation - we have our wedding filmed by a professional, and he gets valuable practice and some shots to use for marketing.

But it wasn't just our guests that were affected by the floods.  The friend who had made our cake was stuck on the other side of the river also, with our un-decorated cake stuck on the other.  This meant that we had to frantically try to find a bakery in Noosa who could make us a wedding cake in VERY short notice.  Luckily, we found a shop in nearby Coolumn, who made us the most amazing 2-tier white chocolate & raspberry cake AND deliver it to Bistro C on the morning of the wedding - lady luck was definitely on our side.  And as it turns out, it was the best luck - the cake looked absolutely beautiful and tasted out-of-this-world amazing!  We still used our other wedding cake for our after-party, so all was not lost.

Also because of the floods, it meant that the flowers were also nearly undeliverable.  On the day of the wedding, they were delivered to the florist (which is an hours drive from Noosa), but she still had to do all of the arranging.  Adding to this, Nancy, who was doing my makeup, was bringing them down to Noosa, so could not leave until they were ready - this was definitely the biggest stress of the day...

to be continued....

Our Wedding Story - Part 1  
Our Wedding Story - Part 2

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Our Wedding Story - Part 2 - The Planning

It has been amost a year since the happiest day of my life.  I've been wanting to write this ever since, but have not quite found the right time to sit down to put it on paper.  In a way, I'm glad I'm only writing this a year on, as it's given me time to reflect on all of the details that made it the amazing story that it is.

Our wedding story is not your traditional wedding story... there was no fairytale proposal, no months and months of the bride flicking through wedding magazines, dreaming up the most wonderful dresses, flowers and table settings, just a humble little story of two people in love, stuck on opposite sides of the world! 

The Planning
[get comfy and put your feet up - this is a long one!]

Obviously, we wanted our wedding to happen as soon as possible so we could get Ben back to the UK and to bridge the awful divide of being apart.  So first of all we had to tackle the logistics; where would we get married, what paperwork would we need to lodge and when would we need to lodge it.  We briefly looked into getting married in the UK, but this would be more of a nightmare and Ben wouldn't have been able to go back to work straight away, so Australia it was. 

We then had to decide on a date.  In Australia, you must lodge your Notice of Intent at least 4 weeks before you can legally be wed.  With our decision made in late November, it was looking likely we would be having a January wedding (also taking into account the Christmas holidays).  We finally decided on Friday 14 January!

 Ben and I had decided that we would be happy to have our marriage ceremony at a Registry office in Australia, perhaps with our parents present and then maybe celebrate with brunch/lunch/dinner and a bottle of bubbles afterwards.  Our decision was based on a few factors:  1. we were conscious that our decision to get married may seem a little hasty to some and we didn't want to turn it into a "show".  2. We wanted to get married as soon as possible, so we didn't have time to organise an elaborate wedding, and 3. we were not financially prepared for a wedding, so a big fancy wedding was out of the question.

However, and as most people who have walked down the aisle will no doubt relate, our families were not so keen on this idea.  I quickly came to understand that a wedding is not just about 2 people, but also about the people in their lives who have loved them, nurtured them and watched them grow into the loving adults they are today.

So we compromised - a small, simple wedding with our nearest and dearest.

As we hadn't spent much time together in Australia, and as our families live in different states, we would have to decide on the best location.  Just a couple of months before (when I had flown home for a short visit) Ben and I had spent a lovely couple of weeks in Noosa (a small resort town near where I grew up), which is my favourite place on this earth and was very special to me that I had shared it with Ben, who also fell in love with it.  It seemed logical that this would be where we would be married and where we would share the memories of our big day for the rest of our lives.

The hardest part of our "small wedding" compromise was the guest list, which I'm sure many people can sympathise with.  I had quite a clear idea in my head as to who I wanted present on that day - my parents, grandparents, siblings and 4 of my closest friends who have been a large part of my life (and have stayed that way regardless of me living on the other side of the world for four years).  Ben similarly, has a large family and had a little more trouble than I in deciding on his guest list, but after a lot of discussion and deliberation, we had decided on our final guest list.

We also decided that as we couldn't invite everyone we would have liked to on the day, we would have wedding "after-parties" to allow us to celebrate with everyone we missed on the day so we could still share our special day with them. 

Bear in mind, all of these decisions were being made with me in London and Ben in Australia - all of our wedding planning was done over Skype, email and phone - not an easy feat.

This is where I have to say that the internet has to be THE BEST invention of all time.  Once we started googling, we found almost everything we needed online, and the most beautiful and comprehensive websites with LOTS of photo's that made our life so much easier.

The next most important thing was to find a celebrant who was available for our wedding date.  This was quite difficult, as choosing someone to officiate your wedding over the internet is not quite the same as meeting them in person, to connect with them and decide whether they were the best person to play such an important part in your day.  I must say that we were incredibly blessed with our choice of celebrant, Jacqui Clarke, who was not only one of the loveliest people in the world, but who also helped us feel at ease planning within our short time frame and who also went above and beyond to help us with all of the "behind the scenes" paperwork, especially when it came to lodging the visa application.

I have always loved Noosa Main Beach, and even whilst Ben and I were there together on holiday previously, we had seen one of the spots along the shorefront being set up for a wedding.  We did some research on the council's website and found out you could hire any of the foreshore areas for Weddings (at a small cost and for a 2hr time limit).  Unfortunately, this was an area we needed a little extra help with - we wanted to make sure we picked the right one - preferably the most private, as after all, this was a public beach so we wanted to make sure we didn't have too many people staring at us as we exchanged vows.  So I sent my parents on a mission - unfortunately, the day they went it was bucketing down with rain, but they did confirm that the aptly named "Hidden Grove" area was the pick of them all, far enough off the main walkway to not have every passerby glaring at us, but also on the top of the dune overlooking the ocean - just perfect.

The bonus of this location is that it's just a short walk down the boardwalk to my favourite restaurant, Bistro C, where, as luck would have it, was able to accommodate our group of 36 for a late lunch on a Friday afternoon.  The best part about this arrangement was that we could order off the menu and not be locked into "per head" prices, which again helped to keep costs down.  I honestly couldn't be happier that everything was falling into place so easily.

So we now had a date, a venue and a celebrant.

Now for the fun stuff!

The Dress -  I already knew that I didn't want a big fru-fru wedding dress - in fact, I wanted a dress that wasn't a wedding dress.  Yes, I still wanted to look like a bride, but in an understated, classic and elegant kind of way.  Because we were in budget wedding mode, and because London has so many great stores, I made a bee-line for a few of my favourite stores and on the first night of trying-on, I found it.  A simple floor-length dress with a lace overlay, satin bodice and crossover straps - it fit like a glove and I fell in love - the perfect beach wedding dress.

The Rings - Obviously, after our decision had been made, Ben was straight on the case of finding a ring.  Unfortunately it would still be 6 weeks until he could officially place it on my finger, but regardless, it was a very important purchase.  We didn't just want to walk into any high street jeweller and buy something straight from the case, so he started looking around at bespoke jewellers in Sydney.  Ben had quite a good idea of what he was looking for and we spent a lot of Skype time making sure we were on the same page.  Unfortunately, it soon became apparent that due to closures in Australia over the Christmas holiday period, we had pretty much run out of time for anything to be ready in time for the wedding.  This made for an anxious few days of frantically trying to figure out how to get around this.  Then I had a brainwave - I work right next to Hatton Garden (London's diamond district) AND I also received a staff discount at a selection of these stores (perfect for our wedding budget).  So in yet another fairly UN-romantic notion, I went ring shopping with my best friend (the friend responsible for Ben and I meeting) and found our wedding rings.  And because London only closes down for a few days over xmas, we had plenty of time for the rings to be ready before I flew home.

The best of the rest...

Something that was quite easy to organise over the internet was our ceremony set-up.  After many an email exchange with First Class Functions, we had our chairs, aisle runner, registry table and ice tubs (for the ever important bubbly).  They were also happy to help with hanging our chinese lanterns in the trees, so we didn't have to worry about finding someone willing to climb up a ladder.  The other bonus with using First Class was that they have had lots of practice at setting-up and packing-up for a wedding within the 2hr time frame set by the council - these girls do it all the time and everyone was amazed at what a fantastic job they did.

As my parents own a local business in the area, we tried to keep as many things within the local business community.  One of those things that made sense was to order the flowers from the florist across the road from their shop.  There was no doubt that I wanted Lillies for my bouquet and also rose petals to scatter over the aisle runner for the ceremony.  Along with buttonholes for Ben, our Dads and my Pop, and a corsage for my Nan, the flowers seemed an easy item to tick off the list.  Unfortunately, this is one detail I should have been more concerned about as we did have quite a drama with these on the day (but i'll write more about that further on). 

Another member of the business community, who is also a close friend of our family, is Nancy, the beautician who owns the shop next to my parents cafe.  She ever-so-kindly offered to do my makeup on the day and it was really lovely to have someone I've known for such a long time, so eager to turn me into a blushing bride.

After more internet research, I found Deb from Beauty on the Move to do my hair.  Again, we came to know each other over email, so it was lovely to find her to be incredibly bubbly, friendly and helpful when we finally met for my trial a few days before the big day.

Enough about the bride, Ben needed a suit.  As he would be in Sydney until the week before the wedding, and not wanting to worry about travelling with a suit up to Noosa on a plane, he decided to hire a suit from a formal hire store once he arrived in Noosa.  Again, the store were ever so helpful and liaised with him to have as much detail as possible so once he arrived it would be quite easy for him to try-on and pick out a suit.  We did consider buying a suit, but Ben is not a big suit-wearer and again, being budget-conscious we were happy with our decision to hire.

A friend of my parent's, a pastry chef, had agreed to make our wedding cake.  Surprisingly, choosing a wedding cake was one of the hardest decisions.  As it was summer in Australia, we wanted something light, but still delicious and pretty and most importantly, not something that would melt in the heat.  Again, this was one element that turned into a drama, so stay tuned to see what happened...

Our Wedding Story - Part 1

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Our Wedding Story - Part 1 - The Decision

It has been almost a year since the happiest day of my life.  I've been wanting to write this ever since, but have not quite found the right time to sit down to put it on paper.  In a way, I'm glad I'm only writing this a year on, as it's given me time to reflect on all of the details that made it the amazing story that it is.

Our wedding story is not your traditional wedding story... there was no fairytale proposal, no months and months of the bride flicking through wedding magazines, dreaming up the most wonderful dresses, flowers and table settings, just a humble little story of two people in love, stuck on opposite sides of the world!

The Decision

Ben and I met in London (both on the trip of a lifetime, having adventures travelling around Europe), and had been living happily in London together for over a year before Ben's visa expired.  It's a long and complicated story, but after 9 months (and over 2 of those months spent living apart (Ben in Sydney, me in London), it became evident that Ben's Sponsorship visa was not going to come to fruition. 

This was an incredibly difficult time, we both desperately wanted to be together and were both totally and utterly devastated at being in this situation.  We spent a very long and very emotional time pouring over our options, but in the end we decided we really only had 2 choices - the first was to pack up our UK-lives and return to Australia (however, the thought of leaving our London life so soon was almost unbearble - we weren't quite ready to do that yet - there were still many more travels on our wish list), OR, our second option - we get married, enabling Ben to apply for a marriage visa on my UK passport and continue with our life in the UK for as long our hearts desired.

So there it was - our decision to get married was made.

Some may think this incredibly UN-romantic and perhaps a big decision taken lightly.  And I admit, when we first decided I did my fair share of freaking out - wondering if we were doing this for the right reasons.  All I can say is that I got over that pretty quickly - this might sound like a cliché, but when you meet "the one", you just know, and we knew that this was absolutely the right decision.  So it didn't quite happen the way either of us probably imagined, but once we got used to the idea, we were in seventh heaven and couldn't wait to become husband and wife.

Any anxiousness I felt was soon calmed once word started getting out - I was actually surprised that everyone we told were absolutely thrilled for us and a few people even commented how "romantic" our brash decision was.  I couldn't help but feel a little proud inside.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

I won't give up

Jason Mraz back in fine form - a little more chilled out, but beautiful...

On my 2012 wish list - to see him live!

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

How best to spend a cold, winters day...

than with a little photo tour from the "hottest" trip I took last year, Lucerne and Venice...