In which I declare my certain and undying love for my new home

Well, it's six months today since we spent our first night in Hebden Bridge. If you've been following for a while I'm sure you know how much I enjoy my new life, but just in case you didn't, I'd like to rub it in once more. Here are some of the little things that make Hebden Bridge feel special to me. 

Walking along the canal and spotting the last rays of Winter sun on the hilltops.

How unbelievably steep the foothpath up to Heptonstall is, but how gratifying those 15 minutes of torture are once you get to the top.

How pretty and clean Hebden Bridge looks after the rain (and it's just as well because that's how it's been looking most days recently). And the fact that there is a cafe specifically for humans and dogs.

That I can go out at the end of December and still see flowers everywhere. Probably not for long though.

That people aren't afraid to stand out and be different.

The creativity that's visible even in the most unexpected places.


The fact that there's always somewhere new to discover.

The many (almost too easy) photo opportunities.

And finally, the people of HB, who made us feel welcome and at home from day one...

... and the geese, who are an integral part of our daily lives, particularly in the Summer when they wake us up every morning.

I haven't mentionned the many lovely shops and cafes and restaurants and pubs that are a huge added bonus. Tonight I get to walk home from what's looking to be a pretty crazy new year's eve celebration and that's probably a first. So here's to firsts! And may 2014 be filled with them for you too.

Oh and the bridges. Musn't forget the bridges.


Merry and bright

It's official: I'm done with present shopping!!! Are you? Good luck to those who are still crowd surfing in the M&S undies section looking for stocking stuffers!

I've also finished wrapping them! I like to go for a simple brown paper look for most things and this year I invested in some gardening twine and used cute little baubles for a more festive vibe. One lucky member of the family even got the "tea towel-wrapped present" treatment!

Our cards are hanging up over the redundant fireplace. I would have hung them all up there but can't seem to find the rest of my pegs. 

And just in case you missed it yesterday: here are some more shots of my pretty Hornsea jar sitting on the bookshelf. 

The blue really makes the design pop. I think I'm in love...

It's sitting right next to my little collection of crystal-looking things. All of these except the jug belonged to my dear Gran. The jug came from a charity shop in Ireland (hooray for travelling with a car that you can pack full of junk!).

And to finish off with a bit more Christmas cheer in case you haven't had enough yet, here are some cheeky little decorations that escaped the previous photo session... 


A quick trip to the big city

Well we've been living in England for almost six months now. That means six month living a 3-hour (affordable) train ride from London and not taking advantage of it....until last week! Boyfriend recently found a new client who was looking to add a freelance editor and a translator to his team. Bingo!
Although I've already started working for him, we all thought it would be nice to meet face to face just to make sure we agree on basic work ethics and outlook etc. That's the only excuse I needed to go to London. We also got to visit my cousin and his wife and their lovely new baby and their lovely new house. It was an intense 3 days!

The other things I managed to squeeze in were:

A visit to 2 of my favourite shops that happen to be almost neighbours. Handy when you're short of time but need a bit of a city shopping buzz. Not that I bought anything. Too much choice, too many people, too confusing. I'm a country girl now.

We got our fill of sushi and starbucks. The latter tasted really nasty now that I'm used to our local cafes. 

My sole purchase of the trip was this lovely blue Hornsea Pottery jar! Apparently this colour is really hard to find, it's certainly the first time I've ever seen it. And at £6 from a random charity shop in Twickenham it seemed like something I had to have.

I can't wait to get a bit more time to spend in London. The more I go, the more I love it there. Maybe because my Granny was a real Cockney, born within the sound of Bow bells! 




Ok, this is really just an excuse to post some lovely artwork. Remember how I'm looking for a nice big piece for above the sofa?

Well I've just stumbled upon a lovely website called threadless that sells all sorts of weird art. You can choose a design and then have it made into a tshirt or an iPhone cover or a tote whatever you want (at least I think that's how it works. I'm too distracted by the designs to have a proper read).


I love this one but it might be a bit drab with the green sofa. And for the moment I'm really just having fun admiring all the cuteness.


"bad hair day"


"Myth understood"


Major cuteoverload. Sushi will never be the same again.


Neither will unicorns.


"The no flight list"

I'm slowly coming to the conclusion that a) I have the sense of humor of a 5-year old, b) put a face on an inanimate object and I'm sold, and c) I like mountains.


Whisky and chocolates...

...is all that's missing in my cosy lounge now that I'm the proud owner of a sofa. And not just any sofa: a vintage green chesterfield! 

My first Ebay purchase too! Not that I actually had to bid for it or anything. I hate bidding. I've tried it so many times and never ever managed to buy anything. I'm still not a fan of Ebay and only really resorted to it because I couldn't find an affordable and nice second-hand sofa anywhere else.

Now don't you think that wall would look a million times better with a huge piece of art hanging on it? Good, we all agree. Now to find the perfect painting...

As you can see, we're using our Scandinavian blanket box as a coffee table. It's still got all our shoes in it. Oh, if only all of our furniture could have hidden storage space!

I have big plans to stain the back of the box to even out the colour and make the view less ugly from across the room. Because we now have another "seating area": behold! The fireplace throne!

It turns out Boyfriend and I had both toyed with the idea of sticking his old chair in the fireplace but neither one thought the other would agree. He loves the fact that he can sit (leaning forwards to avoid bumping his head on the mantle) with his sword on one side and his giant candelabra on the other, while I love that we didn't have to get rid of the nice chair. It is a little odd having a chair in the fireplace, and the colour doesn't go with the rest of the room. On the plus side: maximum use of space! I would love to reupholster it one of these days, but someone is having none of it (and since it's all that remains of his bachelor days, he will always win that argument). 

I hung our traditional string with pegs across the mantle (using a very high-tech hanging method, a.k.a. white gaffer tape) and now all we need is a few more Christmas cards to make the fireplace look really festive. 

I'm not fond of the chesterfield meets mid-century chevron mix but this is the way things are going to be because I don't want to get rid of the cocktail cabinet and there's only so many ways of arranging the furniture in an English terrace house.

On the whole it's made the room a lot more functional and not as overcrowded as I expected. Sorry for the dark pics, this is as light as it gets in here these days...(psst! If you look up in the next pic you can see my next project! I think the hairy lantern might be making a second, much bigger appearance soon!)

We've pushed the table up under the window and usually do a bit of neighbour-watching while we eat (that's a joke. Our house is at the end of a dead end, so not much goes on, and we find Victorian Farm far more interesting to watch anyway). Now all we need is a coat-rack by the door to solve the "many bags on chair" situation. If only we were allowed to drill holes in the wall...any chances gaffer tape can keep a coat rack up?