Friday, 22 April 2011

And cookies save the day

With all the upcoming bank holidays, Steve and I were talking about what to do with them and how we wished there were more every year.

It was then that I remembered with glee that next year we did indeed get an extra one in June for the Queen's Golden Jubilee. I looked it up then and there to find out when it was.

On doing this I found a lovely list of all the notable days in the British calender; St Switherns, Emmeline Pankhurst Day etc..

Of course, in my wisdom I decided that all of these should be bank holidays as well and started listing them:

"We'd have loads, St George's Day, St David's Day, All Saints, Halloween..."

Steve interrupts,

"No, no, no, not Halloween. Halloween is a silly made up non holiday!"

"Steve", I interject, "Do you like my Jekyll and Hyde cookies? I'd have a whole extra day to make them!"

Steve considers this...

"I get 90% of them, no giving them to those small trick or treaters".

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Oh to be a boy

We are watching some sort of chart show while deciding on which wedding photos make the cut for the book (we can have 80, I have 142 must haves...). To keep the night entertaining, Steve and I decide to play 'Shag, marry, push off a cliff'.

We laugh for a while as some of the choices come around. Then I come up with the ultimate:

'So Steve, Jennifer Garner, Katy Perry and Nicole from the Pussycat Dolls?'

Steve pauses,

'I'd just sit and weep in the corner with no idea what to do'.

Happy Bank Holiday Weekend Number 1!

That clever Facebook

While on Facebook the other day (make friends with me! I am very nice!) I noticed something curious. The ads.

When I was engaged and being a busy little bee wedding planning, all the ads were for wedding dresses, florists and accessories.

Now my status is 'married' they are all ads for divorce lawyers and marriage counsellors....

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

As if I wasn't stressed enough

Last night I had a nightmare about being made to do country dancing. I kept telling the woman that I wasn't meant to be there and yet she ignored me and pushed me round the May Pole more.

Twas hideous.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Kiss me Kate

It would be like ignoring the big pink (is it a pink one?) elephant in the room which is why I am mentioning the Royal Wedding.

Come on, we all know it is coming, we are all grateful for the extra bank holiday (except Steve who is unreasonably mad that he is working it as well as all the other bank holiday weekends) and, a lot of us are either newlyweds or getting married in the near future.

The deely boppers - oh yes

I am going to be controversial - I am looking forward to it. I have got my crown deely boppers, my veil (always looking for an excuse to wear it again) and various union jack/crown themed accessories and items. In fact, I see no reason for anyone to get all het up about it. This, as with the majority of holidays and events, registers as a-super-excuse-for-a-party-so-why-wouldn't-you-embrace-it category.

Kate's ring

My ring
 In all honesty, while I am a tad jealous of Kate's beauty, figure, hair and general loveliness, the two of them are doing what a million people do every year and good for them.

If I was terribly truthful, I actually feel a bit sorry for her. I mean, lets just start with the actual wedding itself - how much say has she had in it? Any of it really. From venue to dress to colour scheme to type of service to food to guests to everything, I loved deciding on all those things and, as Steve and I are both stubborn as hell, we did things exactly the way we wanted to. Yes, we made sure that we accommodated everyone's needs but, to be honest, that wasn't a hardship because it was what we ultimately wanted; for all our loved ones to feel happy and welcome and involved.

Will and Kate's official engagement photo

So we didn't do an official engagement shoot, but here we are a few weeks after we got engaged

Kate will have had very little of that. She had a mini choice in venue - Westminster or St Paul's. No small village church for her, no special place where her parents married or her grandma is buried, worse still, no option of a civil ceremony. The guest list - she'll have been able to put her hundred or so must haves in but the truth is, she won't have met three quarters of the people going to her own wedding. The dress, probably more scope for individuality but lets remember - Royal Weddings call for covered shoulders, long skirts and modesty. The reception, there will be no speeches, no drunken uncles on the dance floor, no jumping about to Beyonce's 'Single Ladies', excitedly pointing at your shiny new wedding ring (as I did at my own wedding...).

I mean, it is unlike anything we would consider a wedding.

I was lucky, I got to pick my entire day from the outfits to the favours from the cake to who I got ready with in the morning.

Us on our wedding day which I wouldn't have changed for the world
And the pressure on her going into their marriage; stressing over whether they can have an exotic honeymoon or will that look bad in the current economic climate, full on royal duties - no job where she can retain a level of normality and sanity, the pressure to produce an heir, I mean there will be no option of surrogacy, IVF or adoption if, for whatever reason, she can't have babies.

So, when I watch the wedding with my Nana (a royalist if ever there was one), glass of champagne in one hand and deely boppers firmly on head, I will be thinking of the woman behind the veil; granted, I'm sure she knows what she is getting herself into, but she is just a person who is marrying the one she loves.

And that is always something to celebrate.

Monday, 18 April 2011

That GCSE obviously worked

I got an A in my Geography GCSE and now I know that it wasn't totally useless for it turns out I totally rock at this game

Play it, you must, I command you.

Basically, you need to land your plane at the named city within five seconds. A few were fairly easy - Manchester = big tick! But it seems that even when I have no clue where somewhere is (Graz? Never heard of it, that's bad isn't it?), I can still locate it within about 30 miles.

Maybe I should become a pilot....

Thursday, 14 April 2011

New York - Central Park on Sunday

Sunday we woke, not too jet lagged and decided it was time to explore. It was glorious sunshine so we decided to walk up towards Central Park. Now, as many of you will know, New York roads (in the North of the city anyway, are fairly easy, simply numbered, vertically starting with First Avenue on the east of the island and ending with Twelfth (I believe), granted there is no Fourth Avenue, instead Lexington, Park an Madison but so far so good. Horizontally they are also number, with 192nd Street up in Harlem, heading down to 1st Street down in Greenwich Village (south from there it gets complex...), now, this is so bloody simple, we got cocky, I mean we can count yep? And all we need to do is go directly north from our hotel on W46th to hit the west side of the park. Unfortunately we started our journey on Times Square so instead of going straight up Seventh, we accidentally chose Broadway; the only road in Manhattan that goes diagonally....

Manhattan from Central Park
 Walking up through the city and towards the park was magical, something I will never really forget; I was in New York City, with my husband, on our honeymoon, it was bright, bright sunshine and, as it was fairly early (around 9.30am) we had this lovely experience of the city starting to walk up on a lazy spring Sunday, people were walking dogs, going for runs, picking up papers.

We passed the Lincoln Centre before putting our names down for brunch at SaraBeth's, totally like in SATC - all egg white omelettes with sides of sausage and marmalade, it was gorgeous plus I had champagne - always a bonus for a Sunday morning! We walked across to the Museum of Natural History which was cool, Steve especially liked the Blue Whale and then walked back through the park, seeing the lake, sitting on rocks and just enjoying the sunshine.

That bear was BIG....
We saw Strawberry Fields where a couple were getting married - just surrounded by tourists and runners and cyclists, we stayed and watched, I cried and Steve got bored. Oh and girls, her bouquet - AMAZE! No flowers, just jewels and buttons and beads, it made me want to get married again, if only for that bouquet.

The Imagine circle where the couple got married

We headed back down 5th Avenue and saw all the big designers, popped into a book shop and bought a much needed restaurant guide (after three arguments over where the hell to go out to eat that night).

Messing about in the bookshop, turns out Steve would not like ten of me

And I can!
After chilling out at the hotel for an hour or so we headed to the hotel bar for a (very overpriced) drink - $27 (about £18) for a cocktail and a beer. Then we headed out, staying local, to the restaurant at the Muse Hotel where the food was good but the toilets were better - OMG, all unisex, seven cubicles all with a different theme, so the Envy one was all green, the Desire - all red and covered in hearts and my favourite, the Vain one, just mirrors, floor, ceiling, walls; fabulous but slightly disconcerting when you are trying to pee....*

We headed back to the hotel for another overpriced drink - hey we were on honeymoon - and then to bed.

* please note, I didn't actually need to go to the loo that much but insisted on peaking into each cubicle to see what they were like.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

It was the Chanels that did it...

Last night, on the oh so cheery news, a report came on about the economy and how inflation is down etc etc...

The lovely George Alagiah explained that the UK's spending dropped 2% in March whereas, interestingly, the US's was up around 1.5%.

Steve looked at me.

"You really should have called the Bank of England to explain that you were going to be out of the country and in America."

Monday, 11 April 2011

I am good at other stuff

At school, like everyone I suppose, I was better at certain things than other. Languages were totally my thing, English Language = yes yes yes, even the humanities I was so so at. Maths wasn't the best (although I did fluke an A* in my GCSE, to this day I am sure they mixed my result with someones, I even asked the Head when I picked my results up, her response, 'Don't worry Livy, we've already checked', that's a confidence boost if ever there was one....).

My downfall?


All of them I was pretty bad at but specifically, Physics. I sucked. Really badly. I was the girl who tried incredibly hard for the first year, totally earnest, worked my little bum off and still pulled a 49% in the end of year exam. After that, I became the girl who didn't even try, I mean, you work hard and still fail? My 13 year old head told me that there was no point even doing that. So I forgot homework, tried to convince the teacher that he had lost it and just didn't listen.

Fast forward 14 years and here I am, with absolutely no knowledge of anything physicsy. Now, that is generally fine; I have no interest in how my microwave or hairdryer works, as long as they do!

Until Steve got totally into Brian Cox and his programme on the universe and planets and stuff (see? No idea....), now, Steve and I have been together for over six years so I generally don't feel silly with things I don't know, I know other things, important things, interesting things, but having your new husband find that you weren't aware that the Earth rotated = not the best.

So, I'm being brave, I am going to tell you all the things Physics related that I truely don't understand, Steve has tried to explain a few of them to me but is getting nowhere - can you help or should I just accept that this is not my thing and get back to my phonology/language analysis/Sex and the City book (delete depending on the day I've had....)?
  • I don't really understand gravity, I mean, I know I don't float, but I am not having it that I am being sucked down to earth, and I don't understand how it works in Australia, I mean, if the world is, as suggested, a great big ball, how is nobody upside down?
  • Speaking of gravity, if it does exist then I can't see why people make such a big thing about Newton discovering it, I mean it isn't an invention after all! It was just sitting there waiting to be discovered! All he discovered was that things fall down when they are dropped and presumabley everyone already knew that!
  • Also, why is space dark? It is closer to the sun than us so surely it should be lighter?
  • Glass - seriously, who invented glass? I mean who would look at a beach, and think 'ooh look if I get a load of that, heat it up to 10000 degrees (how?) and add some potash or whatever (making this up now) I can make a lovely fruit bowl for mother's day, as well as patch up those pesky windows but still let light in'.
And, I suppose this technically isn't Physics (or is it? I don't know) but in the olden days, how did they design and build catherdrals and things, I mean, they didn't even have pencils then.

Friday, 8 April 2011

I want to be a part of it....

So, here is how it is going to work, I am going to split the moon of honey into some smaller chunks, to come out every Tuesday and Thursday, although I will admit that today is Friday... I know right? Hooray! Anyway, yep, the reason for the split posts is, well because, I realise that, fantabulous though I am, not of you will be desperate to read about our trip so this way I can hopefully punctuate it with other funsies posts.

So, here we go!

As a preface I will tell you that I have officially been to New York before. Twice in fact. The second time was when I had to change at JFK following a school skiing trip in Lake Tahoe so all I saw was the inside of the airport and all I remember is pooling my remaining quarters with a friend so we could get MacDonald's, the lady was so amused by 'the quaint English girls' that she gave us an extra cheeseburger. And the first time I was 15 months old. In fact here is a picture of Baby Livy in New York, please note the Union Jack buggy that my mother claims saved her from being stabbed in a gang war in Central Park as I was so cute and English.

You know all about our trip down to Heathrow (except I didn't tell you that I cried and snuffled half the way, I am a loser and do this every time we go abroad, who knows why... I'm sure that the three glasses of wine I had before leaving my Mum's house didn't help to be honest), so, by the time we had got through security, eaten something and debated whether I should buy £198 Marc Jacobs sunglasses in duty free (I didn't which was good as I would never have been able get my Chanellos then) it was time to board. The flight was the flight - although I did find Delta's safety video hilarious, and I also watched the latest Harry Potter and was excited to see that my sister's name appears on the credits even at 30,000 feet.

We arrived in JFK about 3pm and I got very excited getting a yellow cab from Queens to Manhattan, like stupidly and embarrassingly giggly.... twas quite bad really, plus sleep deprivation had made me quite delirious (remember that at this point, 8pm in the UK, I had not slept for around 36 hours) and I kept trying to do an Australian accent. I think there was some logic in my brain, about people not assuming we were English....

Once checked in to the lovely Paramount Hotel, we bounced about the bedroom (Steve very literally) and then headed out to explore the evening. First stop - Times Square. Now, I LOVED it. All bright lights and massive screens, Piccadilly Circus on acid. We wandered up Broadway for a bit, checking out the sites before cutting across and finding Radio City Music Hall and then the Rockefeller Centre. Armed with our New York Passes, we decided to mark our first evening in style and head up. Now, the pass wasn't cheap (around £100 each) but was worth it's weight in gold - free entry for most attractions including Top of the Rock, Empire State, Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty and all museums, zoos and galleries but also, crucially, queue jumping. HOORAH!

The lobby at The Paramount

The Empire State Building from Top of the Rock

Top of the Rock was wonderful, amazing views of the Park and the Empire State Building and the perfect way to kick off the honeymoon, seeing this amazing island from the sky.

Upon descent we realised we needed to eat something, having had a few people (including some of you lovely lot) recommended The Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien we headed there and queued it out for twenty minutes.

Yummy Burger Joint burger
Totally worth the wait, the burgers are out of this world, I even took a picture I am that sad. The place is a total beach shack - not at all like the opulent hotel lobby it sits in. The food is fast and easy, a choice of three burgers with various garnishes, chips and a few drinks but they are oh so good. Seriously, I raved about it for days (FYI, medium rare is totally the way to go with burgers). We accompanied our burgers with the rankest pitcher of lager ever - Sam Adams, apparently some sort of Boston lager, chatting incessantly about how we were loving it already, so excited to be in Manhattan, so excited to be on our honeymoon (one day in and I had already told approximately 28 people and waved my marriage certificate at two of them, much to Steve's embarrassment) and busily planning the next day - Central Park and the Natural History Museum.
Outside Radio City Music Hall

Friday, 1 April 2011


At Top of the Rock, on the first night in NY, about two hours after landing

Hello my dears, I am back!
We landed at Heathrow about five hours ago and have just walked through our front door... oh, why don't I live in our wonderful fountain view room at the Bellagio? Why? (Yes, Mahj - the buffet was out of this world, OMG, there are no words).

Being scared by the size of the bear at the Museum of Natural History

We had the most amazing time, New York was just phenomenal, when we left I honestly didn't think it could get better, and then we hit Vegas. I just can't describe how much I loved it and am trying to persuade Steve and multiple friends to go back for Steve's 30th next July (do you want to come? I would love you to. It will be fabulous).

My super old and battered Manhatten shoes that I bought in 2003 and have waited to wear in the Big Apple ever since
With my donut in Grand Central - a big family tradition started by my Grandpa, so excited that I have now done it too!
The footlong at the Knicks game

I will do a full honeymoon post with photos next week (cleverly I came back just in time for Mother's Day so I am hitting the ground running) but for now, as I am approaching the 25 hours without sleep mark (including a frantic run through Minneapolis airport to get our connecting flight), I will just leave you with a few pictures, dotted throughout this post, and this fun American fact list:
  • Americans are OBSESSED with the royal wedding, every morning ABC and CNN had a half hour report on updates that had happened in the UK over night, complete with a reporter outside Buckingham Palace
  • They have the show 'Hole in the Wall' just like us, except it is a kid's show. And a weak one at that.
  • The Grand Canyon is amazing, just insanely amazing and brilliant. Just you wait to see the photos.
  • I love the show Man v. Food. It was my 7pm-getting-ready-to-go-out-show.
  • You can wear anything in Vegas. Anything. And no-one will judge.
  • American airport security guards do not react well to greasy hair remarks.
  • Cirque du Soleil is just breathtaking.
  • Steve will get a tad pissed off when he isn't able to buy beer at a Knicks game as he has no ID with him.
  • He will be even more pissed when I tease and refuse to buy him any, instead making slurpy noises as I sip my ice cold Bud.
  • If you eat like Americans for 12 days, you will gain five pounds. Yep, in 12 days. The detox starts on Monday!

With Lady Liberty

Outside our hotel, the Bellagio, our room is about four windows up, just on the right hand side of the centre

In the helicopter, on the way to the Grand Canyon

On our boat, through the Grand Canyon - there are no words

Oh and the Chanello? Guess who charged Chanel sunglasses to her credit card over there? I knew I should have left it at home... x