Thursday, 20 August 2015

Go Set A Watchman.

I actually had this book pre-ordered on Amazon and read it pretty much within 48 hours of it being released. Thanks to Batman etc (see here) I've only just been able to really share with you what I thought about such a controversial book. Funnily, I was actually one of the few people with the first issued copies which included some missing text, spent the end few chapters rather confused and was even more bewildered when another copy landed on my doorstep a few days later. Lesson learned: check your emails. Had I have done this I'd have realised that Amazon had very kindly informed me and sent the extra parts over email to avoid such confusion!

I figure if you're reading this post that you have enough interest in Harper Lee or 'To Kill a Mockingbird' or both to appreciate the debate over whether 'Go Set A Watchman' should have been released. I know many who have chosen not to read this, weighing up the moral value as to whether Harper Lee really is in a strong enough state of mind to make the decision herself, or that she may have been taken advantage of and coerced into releasing a novel that we must remember was written before TKAM. I was one of those who really did struggle with the decision to read this, I vigorously  followed the battle between publishers and public; (though I must say, Lee's family have remained politely quiet throughout the debate) changing my mind throughout the run-up to the book's release. When it was finally announced that GSAW was going to be released, questioning reading it seemed insignificant almost. If this book was going to be released whether I decided to read it or not, surely it seems silly not to? 

I've read TKAM a few times that approaching a book that was written, not only before it but that was the original intended read, gave me an instant passion for wanting to decipher the story. Snippets of TKAM are rife in GSAW and it certainly reads as a more unpolished novel. I kind of liked that about the book though and found myself relating to the actual writing of it more than many modern books. 

The story itself affected me more than a book has in a very long time. Honestly, it completely ripped my heart from my chest that I found myself following the masses in despair and hatred for Atticus; shouting at the pages for Jean Scout to walk away and leave such a wretched place. Having held a character in your heart as such a hero for so many years, such a realistic portrayal of how Atticus felt was incredibly moving and it wasn't until those final few chapters where I realised that my respect and empathy for his character had actually increased in a way that I think has also come with my own maturity. The moral of GSAW is so deep and thought provoking that it instils an emotion that stays with you after the final pages have finished. I thought about this book for days afterwards and would honestly recommend it to anyone.

Have you read Go Set A Watchman? Are you one of the people who couldn't bare to read it? I'd really love to talk to any and everybody who has read this about their thoughts! 

Love Sophie Xx

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Wedding Planning Series #11 Marquees.

It's most certainly time that we had a wedding catch up isn't it? With less than ten months to go until the big day, my plan of getting bits and bobs done as we go is working really rather great and something that was concerning me the most (as you know!) was the marquee. 

Well do I have a story for you!

At the beginning of this year, I entered Harps and I into a competition with a local marquee company, Absolute Canvas, to celebrate their ten year anniversary! The requirement was to write a little about yourselves and the type of wedding you're planning and I was so excited not only to save some hard earned dollar but this was one of the main companies I'd been stalking online as who I'd wanted to book.

We all know what I'm like and this little snippet of information that they'd asked for turned into the biggest, in depth essay with made up words like marquee-ey complete with a cheesy jazzy photo of us both (I included it at the end of this post for your amusement). And to be honest, after spending a little longer than expected writing the entry I pressed send and that was that. 

A few months passed (like actually more than three) and after one particularly awful Friday afternoon at work, I looked at my phone and saw that little annoying voicemail icon and a missed call. Being too lazy to actually listen to the voicemail, I just called the number back only to get the best surprise that we'd been chosen for the competition! A lovely lady called Jasmine has been the greatest person to have phoned me in a long time.

After the initial excitement and in depth marquee-ey conversations, we took a little trip to see Tonya at Absolute Canvas's offices and planned from start to finish exactly what we wanted. Tonya's creativity shines so brightly it's no wonder they've been in business for a decade!

I'm actually so goddamn excited about our marquee now that I've been fully transformed. What I love about Absolute Canvas is how much choice there is. I've included a few of my favourite photos from their website to show some of the differences in the ceiling options! There are so many!! The service has been incredible so far and I feel so relaxed knowing that they're taking care of such an important part of the day. 

Thanks again Absolute Canvas for reigniting my faith in marquees and of course for choosing us for your competition!! Happy ten years and only ten months until the big day!!

What do you think about marquees? Indoor or outdoor wedding? 

Look at this cheese <<<<

Love Sophie Xx

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Three Ingredient Chocolate Whirls.

I know what you're thinking...'Put those in my face right now."...Well you're on a computer, you cannot do that, what you can do however, is whack the oven on pretty hot (that sounded a bit too Jamie Oliver for my liking) and spend literally about five minutes to make these all for yourself. 

You're Gonna Need:

  • Butter- Just a good couple of chunks- this is lazy baking remember.
  • Pre-made puff pastry- we're not bothering to make our own here guys.
  • Nutella *or other named chocolate spreads*- We're not on a diet here by the way.

Let's Do This:

  1. Melt that butter! You can pop it in the microwave for about 30 seconds or you can melt it on the hob, whatever's laziest for you!
  2. Paint that butter all over your rolled out pastry (it should already come in a sheet-if not roll it to about an inch thick)
  3. (You can add a fourth ingredient here and sprinkle some sugar for extra goodness if you want)
  4. Melt that Nutella! See above methods...
  5. Spread that Nutella to one's taste.
  6. Roll that sugary delight like a sausage and using a sharp knife, cut into chunks.
  7. Lay in a well greased baking dish and paint a little more butter over the top for good luck.
  8. Pop in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and filling your house with the scent of joy.
These whirls of happiness actually became Harp's birthday cake he enjoyed them so much, this was the best news to me who didn't have to slave over the oven making the most complicated chocolate cake that he usually wants. 

Let me know if you make them!

Love Sophie Xx

Saturday, 15 August 2015

A Month Away In Photos.

This is probably the most summed up photo of my summer. Cake, flowers and a sneaky bunny.

Made some delicious brownies for a charity event!

Funky blue flowers.

Falmouth at 7am on a sunny morning makes early starts for work not half bad.

My hair is red again! Was it last time you saw me? Probably not! The ends have faded pretty badly now though!

I could spend all day organising shelves like this.

Good weekend everyone! How the golly gosh are you all?! It's been forever, ok well maybe not that long but it has been over a month since I last visited this little corner of the land and there a couple of reasons why it's taken me so long to get my backside in gear. Firstly; I've been pretty ill. Losing my voice for just over two weeks has had me pretty flat and sleeping at every single spare moment just became a bit necessary. Then, just as I was feeling better, a certain four legged creature whom stalks my life and my house decided he'd gnaw through my macbook charger (for the second time this year!) and do you know how bloody hard it is to get a replacement macbook charger in Cornwall?! Amazon to the rescue and ya-da ya-da here we are!

So, let us catch up with lemonade and cake!

Love Sophie and A Very Naughty Batman Xx