How bout a bit of positivity around here? And a bit of an update to get the ball rolling on blogging again.

Reading:  I have probably said this before, but I like to re-read the same books over and over, usually. However, I’m reading a great book recommended by Jolie, called When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron. Seems apt.

Thinking about:  Everything. Do you ever feel like your brain is trying to digest everything in life at once? That’s what it feels like right now. Our first goal is to get the house on the market, and then try and tackle other things going on.  Work is still kinda insane, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  I think the relief when everything comes together later in the year will just be immense. I’ll be writing 2016 down as a tough year that hopefully helped us to achieve some great things.




Listening to:  I’ve got a playlist right now of about 25 songs that I’ve just had on shuffle constantly. I’ve recently got into CHVRCHES and Broods thanks to Chris, and I’m really into Rihanna’s Sledgehammer, the track from the new Star Trek film.  Also still really loving Joy Williams and Vanessa Carlton’s latest albums – playing them a lot.

Watching:  We’ve caught up with a lot of shows/they’re on hiatus, so we’ve been watching a lot of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and I’ve started Stranger Things and will need to start it again so Dave can see it. It’s like Twin Peaks meets E.T. with a side of horror and worth a shot.

Trying:  To let go of things.  Nothing is set in stone in any aspect of my life right now, and that’s one of my biggest issues. It all just feels a bit out of my control. The uncertainty, the not knowing.. it’s a killer. I am super sad to be leaving Scotland at some stage, but at the same time, being home is going to give me a sense of calm, I think.

Loving:  Sorting my house to sell has actually been quite cathartic. I’m finding so much crap I’d forgotten about, and getting rid of so much clutter. It’s good for the soul.




Celebrating:  We’ve got so much coming up over the next few months. We’ve got a wedding this weekend, a visit to some of my mother’s family the following weekend, then August a wedding in Aberdeen, then September will bring the show I’m involved in, and other fun things, such as…

Making me happy:  I’ve planned a great trip for myself in September, which will be my last trip to London, and my last travels on my own for a while, I imagine (I do enjoy travelling solo, but I miss D).  I’ve got TCGTE in Edinburgh on the Wednesday, then on the Thursday I go down to London and stay in Stevenage for the night to go to FriendsFest (yes, I am a big nerd). Then Friday and Saturday nights I’m in London proper for the London TCGTE shows, then back up on Sunday.  I was always going down for Complete Guide, but now I’ve tacked on FriendsFest, it’s a bonus.

Anyway. How are you?






Let me tell you that I love you, and I think about you all the time – Caledonia you’re calling me, now I’m going home



I come from one of the most beautiful countries in the world, but geez, Scotland takes my breath away sometimes (especially the northwest). Here are some snaps from my recent drives around Scotland!  I travelled from Edinburgh to Fort William, through Glencoe, etc. Stunning.


Glenfinnan/Loch Shiel

Glenfinnan Viaduct





January update.


(That is one big picture of my face. And it’s grainy, but hey. I’m all about the self-esteem lately, and it’s the only picture of myself I’ve liked in a while!)



So. Life. I wanted to just give an update.

Things are fine.



After a week of getting the most unreliable bus system ever, I’m finally back on the road. Our car is in the shop until Friday, but we’re currently driving a courtesy Peugeot 107, which is like driving a slightly-larger smart car.  Dave fits into it, just, but there’s no way you’d get more than one passenger in the back, especially if he’s driving! It is tiny. I shall photograph it later.



In other news, I have started a wee bit of wedding planning – the biggest thing is the venue, I guess! Once you’ve got that, you’ve got the date, and you get the caterers involved and then the celebrant and it all sort of rolls away downhill from there. I have a few ideas as to colours and decorations for the reception, and of course I’ve looked up dresses, because who gets married without googling wedding dresses, right?

People keep asking me if I find it stressful, but to me, planning is the one thing that makes my life make sense most of the time, so it’s not a bad job to have. I also have just under 15 months, so it’s not like I’m in any hurry.



My ring sadly is not on my finger, as despite the fact that it fits my middle finger (a bit loosely), it is apparently 5 sizes too big for my ring finger (how incremental are ring sizes?!), so it’s in getting sized. We walked into the first reputable place we saw, which happened to be Goodwin’s, and geez, once you’ve had to ring a bell to get into a jewellery shop, you’re kinda stuck agreeing to whatever they quote for ring sizing.  At least I know they’ll look after it and do a decent job.  They have warned me that because I have such tiny freakish hands, it will end up more oval than round. Which I guess is understandable. I’m nervous but hey, it needs to be done, right? I’m not wearing some sort of sizing guard thing in there for the next 50 years.



Brigadoon is going well, though I think we may be behind where we need to be at this point, but I’m hoping it really starts to come together over the next few weeks. I really need to get off-book, and I’m not far off.



So other than all of those busy things, I’m mostly just trying to plan/organise our trip home this coming April, which we’re still not sure how we’re paying for, but. Hey. It’ll come together eventually. I’m excited to go home, I need to stop leaving it so long, but then again, it’s so expensive and it takes most of our leave each time. Next year we’ll be doing the same again for the wedding.

I wonder if I’ll ever stop feeling torn between two places.





Playing tour guide Pt. 2 (bridges and boats)


One evening when my parents were here, we returned to South Queensferry so that they could see the rail bridge with the lights on. It’s pretty.

Unfortunately, in summer, the sun goes down in the middle of the night (close to 11pm), and so we waited and waited and waited and it just didn’t happen. Ah well, next time! The photos are pretty though.



I also took them on a drive to Anstruther for their famous fish and chips. It was a lot further than I remembered. On the way we stopped in Culross (the palace was closed but it’s still nice to photograph from the outside):



And then after dinner at Anstruther, we had a wander around by the boats after dinner.



Other events included a lovely dinner at The Witchery, a fancy restaurant up by the castle…



And Falkirk Wheel, of course. It’s become a staple visit.



It always impresses!





Playing tour guide Pt. 1 (and squirrel friends!)



As I said in my last post, I owe you some pictures/tales from my parents’ visit in the summer time.  We had a very nice time, though as always, wrangling family and not having a lot of down time can be quite high stress. It was however so lovely to host, to cook, to drive, to show, to take pride in this place that we live and the home that we’d built.



As well as South Queensferry (above), we spent some time at Culzean Castle and at New Lanark, which is a heritage village (which was closed, but still nice to walk around).



We also had an afternoon in the Royal Botanic Gardens, where something magical happened.


You may be aware that I like squirrels. I didn’t grow up seeing them, and despite the greys being pests and making the reds endangered, I still really like them. And the Botanics are full of them.



I was excited to see them at all, to be honest. But then we realised there was a woman feeding them.



This little guy was pretty friendly.



And then the lady gave us peanuts. And I got to do something amazing.

I dropped one and he came to grab it.



The lady kindly pointed out one of the squirrels who was “particularly friendly”. And so I lay down and held out a peanut (as did Dave)…



And then my wee friend was gone.  Dave has a video of me squealing. It’s very childish. But it made me so happy.


Thank you, squirrel friends. More pics from their trip to come on Monday.  Have a great weekend!




2 hours in Paris/photos from France



I am feeling oddly positive today, for a Monday.



I realised just earlier that despite meaning to, I hadn’t ever caught you all up on Paris and the Scottish part of my trip with my folks earlier this year.



To sum up our 2 hours in Paris: rushed. We literally just took the metro to the Eiffel Tower, took pictures, ate a bit of food, wandered over the bridge and back, and then got the metro back to the airport. Not a lot!

So there are the 3 pictures I took in Paris. I’ll post about Edinburgh/Scottish adventures tomorrow. And below is a selection of pictures I took on my camera on the canal trip.





On the way


My brother Daniel is here from London for the week and that makes me happy.

The Burkes leave tomorrow for their OE, which whirls through Auckland, Australia, Asia until finally arriving in my brother’s new hometown. And while I am oh-so-happy and excited for them, this makes me sad.

Happy and sad are fighting and sad seems to be winning. Well at least for tonight.

I have words to post on the Burkes and many other things, but tonight is reserved for going to bed and watching Bones and feeling lucky that I’ve had a Sarah-Rose and a Craig so close by for so long.