The beginning of summer

8 April 2011

It’s a lovely sunny day here in the West Country. The toddler and I are currently lounging around after a busy morning living it up at play group and I’m half watching Poirot (and rather hideously wondering if he has ever had sex – I know, I’m sorry but he’s so finicky and there’s that moustache) while working on my latest chapter. I’d really love to be able to escape to Paris on a gorgeous day like this but as that isn’t possible right now, I’m lucky to have the next best thing although Paris was not exactly a great place to be in the summer of 1788, what with all the droughts and failed harvests and riots and stuff.

So what’s making you happy right now? I love the summer – I’m a pasty faced redhead under this pink dye so ought to hate it really but actually I love it and I can feel my mood lifting as soon as I get out of bed and see the first soft rays of sunshine peeking between the curtains.

Today is a special day actually as it is my husband’s birthday! Poor thing though – we’ve had five parcels so far this morning, three of which were for me (including two for something very very exciting I am doing on this blog) and the two addressed to him are birthday presents for our eldest, who turns six in a couple of weeks time. Oops.

It’s actually the eighth of his birthdays that we have spent together – that’s a bit crazy isn’t it? How times have changed since then…

I bought him one of these as a present from one of my favourite online shops, Twisted Twee:

It was one of those classic ‘I Saw This And Thought Of You’ moments. Luckily, he seems to really love it, so that’s good!

Also in the post was a new dress for me from Topshop. I’m still channeling Helena Bonham-Carter when I get dressed in the morning but have noticed that this can be occasionally a bit hit or miss. When it’s a hit, I think I look ace but when it’s a miss, well, it’s all a bit Plymouth Brethren. I think you might actually have to be HBC herself to be able to pull it off.

I got this book yesterday in a nice parcel of cookery books and must say that it is rather fabulous. I haven’t managed to get to any actual recipes yet, but I adore Mallika Basu’s chatty, informal writing style and am looking forward to reading more. She has a blog here, which looks great too.

I also got this book, which I haven’t had a proper chance to look through yet but looks to be full of some amazing recipes! I adore curry, I really do and am so excited about both of these new cook books as I am hoping they will give me some great new ideas! We’re a vegetarian household so I tend to just make muttar paneer – I’m hoping to expand my range a bit.

Do you spot a theme with these covers? This is the third book that I bought and I am super excited about it! Today would be the perfect time to try out something wouldn’t it? Do you think some gorgeous cupcakes would make up for the lack of birthday parcels?

I’m currently nearing the end of Secret of the Sands by Sara Sheridan, which is just wonderful and perfect for balmy summer days. It’s reminding me of the MM Kaye novels that I used to love as a girl (and still do – I have a yearning to read Shadow of the Moon now), which is a very good thing indeed and I really recommend it if you love fabulous stories about forbidden romances set in exotic climes. I’ll be writing a proper review when I’ve finished!

Flora by Gucci is currently at the top of my perfume wish list. I tried it on the other day and oh, it made me feel so cheerful and summery and elegant. I’m also a bit smitten with the new special edition of Marc Jacobs’ Daisy – Eau de Fresh. It’s really gorgeous. I always want to buy new scents in the summer, do you?