07 September 2010


Well that is how I feel at the moment.... bleurgh. After a not so sunny summer autumn seems to not too far away and I am feeling quite grey. After completing my PGCE (yeah!) I am looking for a job (not yeah!) and getting more and more grey as the days go by. Hopefully something will come up soon or I will have ran out of house things to do!
I have been decorating our flat, the two bedrooms are now a newer looking shade of magnolia with bright, shiny, white woodwork making them lovely, clean and new. I have also been doing some sewing and made a wonderful (almost anyway) purse and am at the present time undoing some stitching on another one. I will continue un-stitching before re-stitching it correctly and then will show you what I have been making!
As you have probably guessed from previous posts - I love to read! So I have been reading my way through my bookshelf. I didn't want to bore you with too many book reviews so they will come one at a time later on.
My lovely kitten also keeps me busy - she has developed a keen liking to my new cardigan and keeps getting it out of everywhere I hide it! She is most mischievous but also too cute so I can't stay mad with her.

Lastly I am enjoying watching CSI....... it is on many times throughout the day so I can indulge frequently. My husband dislikes it, (or so he says... he seems to have been unable to leave the room while it has been on a few times now) so while he is busy studying I am taking full advantage of having the TV remote to myself!
One thing does seem to be missing from my list of past-times... jewellery making! Well I have done a bit and intend to do more. I am aiming to get everything photographed this week so if you don't see any new pictures by Monday please tell me off.
Although all these things are fun and I am enjoying my beautiful home, I would just love a job. But enough sadness... I am off to watch CSI!

17 August 2010

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows

Flicking through this book before I began, I saw quite a bit of white space on the pages and the fact that this book is written as many letters to and from the main character Juliet. This pleased me after my attempt at reading The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (if you know the book you will know why I only attempted it!), I wanted something that wouldn’t take me ten years to plough through. As I began reading, I quickly warmed to Juliet and the other characters she is writing to. 

The book is set after World War II and everyone seems unsure of themselves and the times, quite understandable in the circumstances. Juliet receieves a letter from a resident on Guernsey requesting information about an author – Dawsey Adams has acquired a book that once belonged to Juliet. This first letter sees a strong relationship grow between Juliet and all the members of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, resulting in Juliet visiting Guernsey.

This book is a wonderful read that really captured a different light of life after the war. It is uplifting, giving a story about hope and love with great heartache, but most of all it is about friendships. We take for granted now that we can call, email or text our friends but this book reminded me of the pleasure you receive when opening a letter from a friend – something that rarely happens now. It has inspired me to pick up my pen and paper and get writing – it is always on my to do list but just gets put to one side in the business of everyday life.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, a lot of what was written in the letters had meaning for me and I hope when you read this it will for you too. 

I am currently reading The Reader by Bernard Schlink, what are you reading right now?

02 August 2010

The Resurrectionist - James Bradley

(2007) ISBN 9780571232765
I read this for my book club, it had been recommended to a member and from the blurb I assumed we would enjoy it. The blurb enticed us with a sinister and mysterious tale about the underworld of Georgian London. The book started off promising with the beginning descriptions of an anatomists trade but this fell short after only a few unimpressive sentences. The story continued to disappoint and unfortunately never really delivered it's promises of a sinister and mysterious chiller.
At the end of the book you are left confused and need to re-read the last part to try and understand what just happened. Unfortunately the book is so dull you won't re-read that last part leaving you still confused and unsatisfied. What could have been a great read with exciting adventures and descriptive text disappointed our book group but after a bit of internet research it seems we are alone in our thoughts on this book! What did you think about it?
Author site

25 July 2010

The Memory Game - Nicci French

This is French's first novel and by no means does that make it any less of a great read. Although I found it wasn't as fast paced as their other novels, as the story unfolds it keeps you guessing and reading on. The gripping storyline reveals an intriguing web of relationships between two families. With twists emerging throughout the book and likeable characters I would recommend this if you enjoy reading thrillers. It was quite an easy read that showed French's writing style which I do enjoy.
This book served to remind me how much I enjoy French's books and I am now on the lookout for another of hers that I haven't yet read. Although this review is short and sweet it is only because I don't want to give too much away about the plot! I have a habit of doing that and don't want to spoil it for anyone. Have you read this? What did you think?
Author website

22 July 2010

Etsy Shop

For those of you who don't know, I do have a shop over at where you can buy handmade jewellery. I have had the shop for some time now but haven't had the time to put as much into it as I wanted. Having some free time now I am planning to build up the shop and make my mark.
You may be wondering why you should check it out? Here are 5 reasons alone:
1. You will find something for everyone at affordable prices
2. You will find great gifts for friends, family, anyone!
3. It is easy to use
4. You will be welcomed and the service is fast and friendly
5. It is a chance to treat yourself!
Here is a taster of what you will find in the shop
I hope to see you there 

21 July 2010

Twilight Eclipse

After seeing two very different trailers for this film, I went to the cinema in two minds.
 From the trailer showing the exciting fight scenes I felt excited about seeing an action packed fantasy film. After seeing the lovey dovey trailer I was reminded why I have only read the first novel (Twilight, Stephenie Meyer).
The film's artistic talents were shown off with interesting camera shots and impressive CGI, but the action expected only disappointed. The action that was there was brilliant but I wanted more! Cheesy comedy ran through the film taking an edge off the intense romance between the main characters. Although I enjoyed this film I can easily identify it's flaws -don't get me started on my dislike for Bella!
With the story set to continue in two more films I can't help wonder what these may bring. With the general consensus that the first film was the best and the following films not quite matching - why are they making more?
It's continued attraction may only be the increasing number of men with no shirts throughout all the films but can this sustain our interest for two more films?
I am sure my not so favourable review will spark some controversy about this much loved fantasy phenomena and although i can list many things I dislike about this film, I still enjoyed it and will still see the next films.... but I am not sure I am ready to read the remaining books. However I know I am being slowly worn down by friends who seem intent on persuading me to read them - I may have to give in so I can join in the many conversations about the alarming events of the fourth book, but only for that reason... I won't enjoy them!

01 June 2010


After not posting for so long I have so much to say!! 
I think the first thing to happen was that over the Easter break we got a kitten - Florence! Although she is so cute she is also such a menace. She is adorable and very friendly but like any kitten has her mad half hours when she runs around biting and climbing up everything, including us.
Here are a few pictures to show how cute she is:

So apart from supervising this ball of fluff, I have been very busy at school getting stuck into the teacher role and dealing with naughty children! It is half term at the moment so am busy planning for my last three weeks of my placement. The first week back is book week so I will be in my element and am very excited about the week. We have two authors coming to visit - Kaye Umansky and Ali Sparkes and with a witch/wizard theme for one of the days we will be in fancy dress. As well as library visits and story times, I have been thinking up imaginative activities - it is very exciting! 
Since Easter I have also been to see Hairspray at the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton - it was brilliant! If you haven't seen it.... go! It was great how they combined the songs with the dialogue and set the backgrounds for the different scenes. Well worth watching. 
School has been all consuming but am still enjoying it. After the next three weeks are over I should have more time to resume my hobbies and reading. I am very much looking forward to having more time to not doing stupid paperwork and having more time to relax. 
What are your summer plans?

07 April 2010

The Subtle Knife Book Review

I read this book at the beginning of the year, soon after reading the first in the trilogy, the book can be widely found and Amazon have some more good reviews and comments about it. Here is my first review for the Busy Bookworm Challenge.

This is the second book in the Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman. It was easier to read than the first and explains a lot more throughout the story. The story begins to involve more characters and as such becomes more complicated but as the writing is more fluent and easier to understand, there are no problems getting to grips with the ideas. The book takes shape in different worlds and with different stories entwined together. The interesting way Pullman brings the stories together unfolds slowly as you continue to read on. The character of Lyra becomes more lovable and although she appears quite normal in some respects you begin to see her true character forming as she is put through more trials and adventures. Her adaptable personality shows when she meets a young boy who she is told she must help, her trusting nature leads them to the stories end.
As the book draws to an end, you find yourself drawn into these mysterious worlds wanting to know more and wanting to read on.
I began reading the Dark Materials trilogy after my husband would not stop asking me when I would read it so we could discuss it. He only ever reads things he knows he will like and we don't generally read the same thing so I guess I had to be the one to start reading something a little out of my comfort zone - and I am glad I did. This was an enjoyable read and although I had been sceptical about reading this, I am keen to begin the final part of the trilogy.

What did you think about the book?

My 2010 Book Challenge List as of today...

My 2010 Book Challenge List

Every year I think to myself that I would undertake some kind of reading challenge but each year I don't sign myself up to one and on reflection I realise that actually I do read a lot of books! This year I am actively taking on a reading challenge which you can find more information about at Busy Bookworm Reviews website. So far, and I know it is part of the challenge so I do need to do it, I haven't written any reviews... they will come just give me more time! So far I am in the process of reading number 7 on my list and hope to write a few reviews before my holiday is over.

Here is my list - although not complete as I know there will be books I won't read and more that I will. The purple books are those that I have chosen to read myself, the pink are for my own book club and the green are for the library book club (note the differences!!).

1. The Subtle Knife – Phillip Pullman (January)
2. The Resurrectionist – James Bradley (January)
3. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies – Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith (February)
4. Whistleblower – Tess Gerritsen (March)
5. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly – Jean Dominique Bauby (March)
6. Twilight – Stephenie Meyer (April)
7. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov (April)
8. The Yacoubian Building – Alaa Al Aswany (April)
9. Lo’s Diary – Pia Pera (May)
10. Child 44 – Tom Rob (May/June)
11. Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day – Winifred Watson (May/June)
12. The Amber Spyglass – Phillip Pullman (June)
13. The Name of the Rose (July/August)
14. The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society (July/August)
15. Comrade Jim (September/October)
16. Guernica (September/October)
17. The Suspicions of Mr Whicher (November/December)
18. Scottsboro (November/December)

What are you reading?

Spring has arrived!

With the arrival of more sunshine I have brought out my summer jacket!! I may still be wearing a pashmina but the winter coat has been put away... finally. The Easter weekend was gorgeous and sunny, I didn't venture out and about but enjoyed lounging around the living room and basking in the warm sun. I had a well earned break with not a thought about work, it was bliss!
I also put together some more jewellery and took some pictures while it was bright enough to do so. I wanted to share them with you here:

This pastel necklace has been made with summer in mind, the muted colours look striking in this statement necklace.

These cute earrings do have a matching bracelet and necklace so look out or them, although I may be wearing them as they are my favourites!

Classic in white and gold, this striking long necklace will have a bracelet to match. This pretty piece will accompany any outfit, especially black.

Another of my favourites, this bright and summery disc pendant is inspired by daisies and will look perfect on a summers day. This item is for sale on - Disco Daisy Necklace

To help you keep your place in your favourite book is your favourite bookmark, the Stars in Your Eyes Bookmark has a rainbow of seed beads surrounding haematite stars and can be found for sale on

In other news.... I have nearly finished my teacher training!! Since I began in September it has been a whirlwind of ups and downs, I begin my last placement on 20th April and ten weeks after that will have finished. The hard part is now finding a job, with any luck this coming September I will have a class of my own.
I am currently on Easter break and apart from writing an essay I have done absolutely nothing! Well almost, I have been watching Jonathan Creek from the beginning but am not getting any closer to cracking each case. I have also been to visit some kittens so I may well be posting a few pictures of a new pet in a few weeks, my fingers are crossed!
How has your Easter break been?

24 January 2010

Happy New Year!

Hello everyone, it has been a long time! All I can say is this may be the last you'll see of me for even longer next time... as I said before I have begun my PGCE in Primary teaching and it is as everyone warns - intense. I am thoroughly enjoying it but can't wait to get on with actually being a teacher.
I loved my placement before Christmas in a Year 6 at a school in Portsmouth and can't wait to get on my next one which is not until April. I am now though experiencing the 'fun' subjects at uni. So far this year we have made sketchbooks, colour wheels, messy maps, a photo frame, a fairground ride and sung Three Blind Mice for an eternity! Despite all the fun we are having, we have essays to write and test to do so my next few months are pretty jam packed with not so fun things as well.
As many of you probably experienced, we had quite a bit of snow over the Christmas period, which surprised us all particularly in Portsmouth as it doesn't normally last more than a few hours. This snow provided everyone with a thick blanket which quickly turned into a skating rink. Here are a few pictures from our window.
Now the snow has gone I am eagerly awaiting Spring and was delighted with some beautiful sunshine today. It provided with a welcome distraction to my work.
I am keen to continue writing, I may just finish this post and keep writing more to post at a later date, now I have begun I may not be able to stop!
Hopefully you will hear from me sooner than last time.