It’s snowing!

November 30th and it started snowing in London this morning. Not much but enough to say it could be a cold winter ahead.

This week has been cold. I’ve been wearing wool tights, something I haven’t done for the last couple of years as the temperatures stayed around the ten degree and balmy mark. As it’s currently 3 degrees, it seemed like a good idea.

I have to say, I love a winter wardrobe and enjoy wearing layers of wool. I’ve invested in a new lint remover as I hate a bobbly jumper and am lovely and warm in my woollies.

Let it snow!


This week was the penultimate week at Mud Slinging and finally it was time to glaze. 

I had ten pots of various sizes, some more successful than others but I decided I would try and glaze everything in order to have everything fired by next week. This was a good plan which almost worked.

I ended up with everything glazed except three pieces. I focused on pale grey, white and grey blues as I like a more minimal approach to ceramics and surface design. Essentially I didn’t do any design, just dipped the pieces into different colours.

I have absolutely no idea what anything will look like. Hopefully I have something to bring home next week but if not, I feel I’ve learned something along the way.

My biggest challenge… working too quickly. What can I say? I’m used to commercial deadlines!

The Flask to Flask

Autumn is the perfect time of year for Sunday lunch and last Sunday was no exception. We arranged with a large group of friends, kids and dogs to have lunch at The Flask pub in Hampstead.

We had a large table for fourteen with two dogs hidden underneath and ate a delicious lunch. It was lovely and warm inside and we were somewhat reluctant to leave!

After lunch we trotted out into the brisk afternoon and set off across Hampstead Heath to walk to a pub in Highgate, also called The Flask.

The Flaskers (with Agnes’ bum)

After a ramble around the Heath (one with a hip flask to complete the hat-trick) we arrived at the Flask in Highgate just as it was starting to get dark (it was 4pm). We were surprised to find an incredible shrine dedicated to George Michael where loyal fans were lighting candles and tending the memorial. It was quite moving.

We had a couple of drinks at the pub but as we were outside it was starting to get very cold. Before long we rallied the troops and walked through the dark, cold streets to the warmth of the tube station and eventually home. 

A good day out!

Suede Shaming

Each year as we approach the end of November, we, in the corporate world, wait to find out if we are getting a bonus.

The bonus is linked to performance both of the company and individually. It goes without saying that it’s a very nice thing to have and not to be taken for granted.

This year the bonus was confirmed, hurrah! The company performed well in the fourth quarter and I was informed that my bonus would be in my bank account on November 30th. And so I went shopping!

I always think a bonus should be used to buy something completely impractical, something one would never buy and a treat, so with that in mind, I bought a pair of dusty pink suede Gucci shoes, probably the most impractical colour possible for winter in London. These chaps are definitely indoor shoes.

Not going out!

Having done the deed, I then had to confess to Big T as I knew I would be suede shamed!

Black Friday

In the US, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. It’s like the Boxing Day sales and while I’m not one to sleep outside in order to buy a TV, it made sense.

In the UK, Black Friday is a random day in November when things go on sale and people buy stuff. It makes absolutely no sense but there you go, an opportunity to save 20%. As the UK is a nation of shoppers who love a bargain, here we go!

Tomorrow is Black Friday…

The Inaugural Mince Pie

Having had a bad night’s sleep, I was starting to crash by 2pm. It was a bad idea but I ate it anyway, I ate the first mince pie for the season.

Perhaps it was because I was tired or perhaps it was because it was from Pret a Manger but I found it sadly lacking and thought that perhaps I may have lost the taste.

And perhaps that’s not a bad thing. No more pies for me!

Mud Slinging Week 10

I spent the evening turning and shaping my current collection of pots. 

Essentially there was so much extra clay that it meant carving a new pot out of the old. I felt my shapes needed refining but time was of the essence so I was speed-turning at the end, curls of dried clay flying in all directions.

Things were a little rushed and I forgot to take pictures but hopefully next week I’ll be glazing and then the final efforts will be revealed…

Ten weeks since this all began and I felt that I had progressed. I rashly came home and signed up for the next class starting in January. Should be interesting, it’s advanced.

More mud slinging to come in 2018!

A Very Online Christmas

It was a wet Saturday morning and with our local tube station closed for the weekend for engineering works (outrageous!) we were debating going Christmas shopping in Central London by bus.

There are so many things wrong with that sentence it’s hard to know where to start… Christmas Shopping… Central London… BY BUS!!

As luck would have it, it started raining and that was just one thing too many to contemplate… IN THE RAIN!!! Absolutely not.

We cranked up the heating, got comfortable and plugged in. We were doing the Christmas Shopping from the warmth and comfort of the sofa this year.

Perhaps it felt slightly less festive but with the majority of the presents ticked off the list and no tempers frayed due to panic buying, rude pedestrians or any of the usual challenges, it was a very nice way to spend a wet Saturday.

Online Christmas, definitely less painful!

Autumnal Musings

This morning was one of those bright, crisp Autumnal mornings I used to dream about when I lived in LA. 

A bright blue sky, the first frost on the grass, a few golden leaves hanging delicately from damp branches whilst the early morning sun lit shades of russet with highlights of gold. Fat, grey squirrels jumping from branch to branch, falling leaves twirled on to the damp earth below whilst frosty breath caught the air.

I love Autumn, perhaps it’s because my birthday is in September so for me it’s the perfect time of year. Autumn always seems to live up to expectations. You know the conkers are going to fall, the leaves are going to turn gold and red and fall to the ground and you know where you stand. Unlike Summer, it doesn’t disappoint, expectations are lower.

By November goals have been set and either met or discarded and the old year feels comfortable, unlike January when, in the space of a day, it all starts again.

I kicked up a few crisp leaves and the little dog dashed around on the frosty grass trying to catch them. 

And then, as it was Friday, it was time for work but with an Autumnal weekend ahead, something to enjoy.

Burnt Marmalade

I was carefully dehydrating oranges in the oven to make Christmas decorations (seriously, what have I become?) when I decided (after some preliminary festive gin and tonic (hello my old friend) to bake a potato for dinner.

Before I realised it, there was a burnt marmalade smell and my lovely Christmas tree orange slices were burnt to a crisp. Festive Disaster!

It’s a first world problem but my future as a crafter is not looking good!