Thursday, 30 July 2009

Accies Ladies Monthly Catch Up: Pre Season

The last Tuesday of the month came round this week and so we began the Accies girls night for the new season. It is still affectionately called Poker night although we are yet to play any poker!

As the boys are currently in pre season training on a Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday we have already lost them to the game so we made the most of our Tuesday night and did some pre season drinking!
This month Wendy hosted and she put on a great spread I ate LOADS of smoked salmon blinis! It was so good to catch up on every ones news although I was a little jealous hearing all about every one's summer holidays. I wish I had been in France, Thailand, Spain etc.

It was great catching up on all the chat as we had not had a girls night for 2 months due to the holidays. We all had lots of news including one of the girls who has moved in with her boyfriend and another who moves into the flat she bought with their boyfriend next Friday. Exciting times!

Zara, Vicki and Leona.
Lorna and Emily being very animated!
At the end of the evening: Lorna, Emily, Leona, Loreen, Zara and Wendy our hostess for the night.

Monday, 27 July 2009

One of a kind!
LogoThere are
or fewer people with my name in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

This data is just for the USA. I know for a fact that there is another Jennifer Landels in the UK. She goes to the same opticians as me and we are distantly related on our family tree!

I love my last name it is so unique and according to this data thing there are only 114 Landels registered in the USA!

Cinema Trips

Just because we hadn't fitted enough into our weekend already we also went to the cinema twice to use our monthly cinema passes.On Friday night we went to see The Proposal with Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds (he is so hot!) I really enjoyed the movie- good old fashioned RomCom! Hooray! So good after all the boy movies we have seen recently.

We then went to see Bruno, starring Sasha Baron Cohen, last night. Oh my word! I consider myself not to be too prudish and quite open minded but it was just a bit too off the wall! He just saw the line and stepped so far over it it became very, very silly. For me it was too much like the Borat script but with a new character.

The Gathering!

Walking down the High Street to the event.

On Sunday Nathan again accompanied me to another event for work. I had 3 staff at the Gathering event. This has been advertised world wide and was very successful with over 30,000 attending on the Saturday.

"Set in Edinburgh's majestic Holyrood Park on July 25th-26th The Gathering 2009's world class Highland Games are a first for Scotland's capital city. Featuring international highland athletes, outstanding pipers and captivating highland dancers plus a fantastic live music line up and Scotland's finest food and drink! Enjoy a real feast of entertainment and fun for all the family!"
The staff did a great job and survived despite the ever changing weatherNathan and I sat and watched the Highland Games for a while. The caber tossing was pretty good and the log they had to throw was huge (see the left hand side of the photo!) Nathan and I smiling in the sunshine (before it disappeared and reappeared!) There were about a 100+ tents for each of the different clans who were represented. This was the first mass clan gathering for 100's of years. It was fun seeing all the Americans, Canadians, Australians and New Zealanders dressed up in their ancestors tartan.
I loved this airstream that one of the local radio stations was using to broadcast from. Very cool!

After we had been to the event we wondered up the High Street again and then walked down Victoria Street (pictured above) We are so lucky to live in such a beautiful city. Nathan then treated me to dinner at Petit Paris in the Grassmarket- it was so tasty! and we even managed to sit outside and enjoy the evening sunshine.

Busy Saturday

This weekend was action packed! I had to work at two events for the Scottish Government's Go Greener campaign. I had staff at both signing up the Scottish public to live a Greener lifestyle. Nathan was kind enough to come with me up to Fife to the Big Tent event. It was a very ecological festival and there was loads to do. They had the most amazing furniture makers hand carving furniture on site- it was gorgeous!
Nathan and I did feel a little bit out of place at the festival as a lot of people were quite alternative. We had parked the car off site and had walked through the woods to get there. On the way back Nathan heard the crack of a cricket bat so we wondered down and found this beautiful cricket pitch belonging to the Falkland team. We sat at this lovely bench and watched the game for a while. It was really relaxing and much more entertaining live than it is on the television! It turned into a lovely outdoors afternoon.
We then headed back to Edinburgh and Becky had put on a lovely spread for dinner. Roast Chicken, salads, cold meats, antipasti and much more- yum!
Over 35 years ago my Dad and Willen (in the middle) went to University together and studied architecture. Our families have remained close and we have visited them many times in Oslo and Kragero (where they have a summer house) Phillip (on the left) has been attending University in Edinburgh for the last 3 years and is about to leave to go back to Norway to continue his studies in Bergen. Phillip and Willen were over for the weekend sorting out his flat for rental so we had a wee impromptu evening at Becky's to all get together and catch up. It was so nice to see them.

Friday, 24 July 2009

Summer Party

Yesterday we had our work summer party. We left work at 3pm and continued on through to the wee small hours. It was lots of fun but boy am I suffering today!

Our theme was English Summer Party so there were lots of floral dresses, fasinators and hats. The boys were pretty well turned out too!
On the barge, where we have our conference room, before we set off. All the girlies in their florals!
We were split into teams and sent off on a mission to complete tasks and drink lots! There were 9 in our group. It was good meeting new people that I had never spoken to before. The way our building is laid out you never really meet new people unless they are on your floor or you work on a project with them. In our final destination, the Street before we went to the Hawke and Hunter, our venue for the evenings activities. We were welcomed to the Secret Garden with a glass of Pimms.
I'm slightly tipsy by this point but you can see my outfit a little better. I have had this in my wardrobe for about 3 years and only wore it for the first time yesterday. I had lots of outfits that would have fit the bill but nothing that was floral so I opted for this as it was the brightest and most summery looking of all my dresses.
The band that played in the Hawke and Hunter Secret Garden were called Black Diamond Express and they were a fantastic 8 piece band. Click here to hear their music.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Art Deco Mirrors

I love Art Deco. I have since I studied it at school. It's the lines and shapes and the simplicity of the patterns.

A couple of weeks ago I saw a load of mirrors in TKMaxx, of all places that fitted this bill exactly. They were not expensive- although we are trying to be good with money and save! But I have been thinking about those mirrors a lot.

The idea I have is similar to this one that I found on another blog. What do you think?

Lunchtime Blogging

Work has been quite demanding recently and I often feel like I am so swamped I will never get out alive!! I know, I know I would work in Advertising!

I am really enjoying it and if truth be told I think I thrive off the fast pace. It is a lot to get used to though and I am still on such a big learning curve!

Most days I don't even manage to take a lunch. I eat my sandwich or salad at my desk and work on through. I have been really good this week (mostly due to it being near the end of the month!) I have been making Nathan and I's lunch to take in it is so so much cheaper than buying it from the sandwich shop.

One thing I haven't given up though is my blogging. It is my 10 minutes of escapism back into my world... I get to reclaim my life just for a little bit during the day. I have to say it is keeping me sane. Some people like to walk round the block to revive themselves- for me it is delving into the world of blogging.

In the last week I have really been enjoying finding new blogs and discovering more talent and creativity.I had a great nose around Donna Hay's blog and website today. She is Australia's equivalent to Martha Stewart. She doesn't have such an extensive source on her website but there are still some great idea's there. Have a peep. I really like her branding- love the blue and white so clean and inviting! Donna has a lot of cook books on sale and also has just opened a store in Australia- lets hope she comes over here soon. I have tried her ready mix cookie boxes- yummy!

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Jessica Rust Designs

I found these beautiful plates on a lovely lady called Jessica Rust's design website. They personalise the plates for you with you and your spouse's initials in the heart on the tree. What a lovely wedding gift!

It made me smile as my Grandparents have two birch trees in their garden. They were given them by my Parent's for their 25th wedding anniversary. 33 years later they have grown quite large and I hope they are there for a long time more.
I stumbled across Jessica Rust as she was one of 6 women mentioned in Country Livings editorial on 2009 Women Entrepreneurs who have turned their passion into their business. (oh! one day that will be me!) Click here to see more about these amazing women.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Relaxing Sunday

On Sunday Nathan and I had a very lazy day. Saturday had been a bit crazy as I had been working for an event on Saturday morning and Nathan had training, then I had babysitting on Saturday night.

So Sunday we walked down to the west end to Indigo Yard and sat outside and had breakfast. It was so nice. We read the papers and relaxed. On the walk home- because we hadn't stuffed our faces enough we stopped for a frappacino (coffee light!)

When we got back the cricket was on, as was the golf so Nathan and I snuggled up with yet more snacks and watched the sport unfold. I then drifted off and slept for almost 5 hours!! I think it was the cricket!! (not the most exciting game in the world!)
When I woke up Tom Watson was still in the lead. I so so wanted him to win but no such luck. Poor man. He lost it at the 18th and he had no more energy for the play off. Such a shame.

And finally I cooked the dinner (see my previous post) so not very much excitement but a much needed rest!

Tasty Tea

We were lucky enough to have another veg box delivered to us from Nathan's parents this weekend. We got more courgettes, turnips, green beans and look at the garlic. It tasted amazing!!
My favourite dinner is one Nathan taught me- garlic, ginger and chilli salmon. It doesn't look that amazing but it tastes unbelievable. After cutting up the fresh garlic, ginger and chilli I place them on top of 2 salmon fillets wrapped in tin foil.
I make tin foil (aluminium) squares for the salmon. Sprinkle some sesame seeds over and also a little soya sauce. Scrunch the foil together to close the parcel and cook for 20 mins at 180*C.
If you don't do hot then you can discard the chillies as they've done their job flavouring the salmon. Nathan and I leave them on as we love a bit of spice. I served the salmon with green beans from Lily and Neil's allotment.
I also made rhubarb crumble with custard. I never took an after shot but here is my freshly cooked rhubarb. I stewed it with ginger and sugar- YUM!

Friday, 17 July 2009

Amazing light

This is not the best photo as the lighting is way too yellow but I thought I'd let you see the white light fitting that I am currently coveting from IKEA. It's made of wire and paper which makes it so unusual.

Nathan and I spied it when we were shopping for Becky's presents last week and I adore it. Nathan thinks it will hang too low and he will hit his head but I am convinced with our high ceilings that it will be fine. (although am I just trying to tell myself that!?)

The other problem may be that it dominates the room too much.. mmmm....? I really want a white dramatic light fighting for the centre of our room. Any ideas?

Creative Mint

I found a new blog to love! And I adore it! Creative Mint is by a lady called Leslie who studied architecture and interior design but never really practiced either. It seems that like me she uses her blog as her creative outlet although her photos and collages are breathtaking, much more creative then I have given myself time to be! I need to get back into my crafts! If you are interested to see more click here.

Thursday, 16 July 2009


Last Thursday my friends Hillary and Emma came over for dinner. I cooked my favourite dish of the moment, coconut chicken with cucumber and red onion salad. It is a dish I first discovered from Good Food Magazine last summer. Click here to see my post from last year.

It was so good to see the girls. We were all so tired though. I wish other commitments and work didn't always get in the way of doing what you want!

Hillary brought me these gorgeous flowers. I love having fresh flowers in the house. I have noticed that I have more living plants in the house at the moment and I am loving coming home each evening and watering my herbs, which sit on my window ledge. It has been so humid though that if I forget to do it my mint looks half dead by the following evening. The mint is thriving and my thyme also has flowers on it. The only one that is not doing so well is sage. Not sure what to do with it so it grows as well as the others.

I am giving away my secrets here but when I have been taking round flowers to friends or family recently I have taken to buying them from the supermarket- they are much cheaper and seem to last longer (probably lots of chemicals- oh well!)

I bought a huge pack of tissue paper in all sorts of colours from Costco and I have used this to wrap the flowers, always complimenting the paper with the colours of the flowers.

I stripped down these roses and tied them in a bouquet so when my recipient took them out of the tissue they looked like they had come from a florist and they only cost me £4.47!! Genius! but now everyone knows they will know how thrifty I am being! oops!

Peas and Veg Boxes!

Nathan's parents are again supplying us with veggie boxes that they are harvesting from their allotment. The veggies are so delicious- especially the potatoes- yum!

I am not a huge fan of peas but this is largely due to the frozen variety being so much less delicious than the fresh variety.

I love shelling peas too- so therapeutic! Nathan and I were sat shelling peas for our dinner last night and he was telling me it used to be his sister and his job when they were younger and their Mum was prepping dinner. I have a more romantic image in my head of sitting on a Southern American porch with a cold glass of lemonade shelling peas for dinner- maybe one day!

Last night Nathan made a tasty Spanish omlette with peas, bacon, potatoes, onion etc. It was very delicious and used up cold potatoes that we cooked for our dinner the other night.

Last week we had a dish that I made with very similar ingredients also with courgettes , chicken and rosemary made into a risotto. The risotto was delicious with rosemary!

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Becky's Birthday decorations

Yesterday, 14th of July was my sister's birthday. For a change we decided to have dinner at home. It worked out really well and my Mum made a delicious meal. Our Menu consisted of:
  • Italian Antipasti- Buffalo mozzarella, roasted peppers, aubergines, parma ham, Serrano ham and more accompanied with mozzarella and rosemary foccacia.
  • Chateaubriand with mini vegetables and green salad.
  • Apricot Tarte
  • Cheeseboard
  • Chocolate Cupcakes as Becky's birthday cake.
The inspiration for my table, gift wrap and the cupcakes came from a hostess with the mostess theme, click here to see more. My sister loves Tiffany jewelery (who wouldn't!) so I used the Tiffany blue as my main colour.

I am not a huge pattern fan so instead I used one colour 12" scrapbook pages as my place mats in tiffany blue and cream.
I wanted to reduce the washing my Dad would be left with so instead of table linen's I used a paper tablecloth and paper napkins. I made small napkin holders with scrap paper in a beautiful purple and blue, which matched both my Mum and I's wrapping paper.
As on Hostess with the Mostess I tied a ribbon round the glasses to bring in the Tiffany bow idea. I went for blue so it didn't disappear on the table cloth. We decorated the dinning table and the coffee table. One of Nathan and I's presents was a spiky plant for her living room that she wanted- it was a bit too hard to wrap!
We also got her a large picture frame to put our friend Susie's print in.
The cupcakes did not turn out as I wanted as the icing was too yellow. This meant that the blue glitter did not show up as well. I had planned for them to look like little Tiffany's boxes. Next time I will have to die the icing blue. The white chocolate bows turned out nicely though.
Becky opening her presents from my Parents- clearly delighted with her gifts!
I took a picture of the table before we sat down and then my camera died! Boo hiss! So we took some snaps with Becky's camera of our food, people and Bex blowing out her candles. Once I she sends them across to me I will get them up.