Wednesday, 2 September 2015


Maldon and Lake Meadows (in Billericay), were places I visited often as a child.

Back in July (when the weather was wonderful), myself and the boy had a picnic in Maldon, strolled along the highstreet, and generally had a nice relax.

 photo DSCF0399_zpsshghgabr.jpg  photo DSCF0402_zps3vxuz3ja.jpg  photo DSCF0411_zpszplrln3f.jpg

Now, the last picture, is of Ealdorman Byrthnoth of Essex (led the English against the Vikings at the battle of Maldon) - I had never noticed this statue before, so was very happy when we stumbled across it! I think on past visits we've been more interested in their two museums and the lovely highstreet!

Like Maldon, we managed to visit Lake Meadows when it was sunny.

 photo DSCF0431_zps92kslxte.jpg  photo DSCF0434_zpsfpelyuri.jpg

Lake Meadows is a huge park, with a lake plonked in the middle of it (duh - haha), and as the boy had never been there before I thought it would make a nice walk. Its also good to reminisce :)


t-shirt - topshop (£8 in the sale)
skirt - topshop (£20 - bought last week)
jacket - topshop (£5ish via a charity shop)

I also have new wine-red primark shoes on but you can't see them in the pictures!

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Hever Castle

Back in July myself and the boy drove down to Kent to Anne Boleyn's childhood home. The castle/stately home first came to my attentions whilst watching The Tudors back in 2009, and since then i've always wanted to go.

The grounds are beautiful, and the gardens are very Roman-esque - very peaceful. I can understand why this site receives hundreds of visitors everyday!

 photo hever2_zps7g2rlriv.jpg

The estate began life as a country house, built by the "Bullen" (Boleyn) family in the late 13th century, and wasn't converted into a manor house till around 1462.
Thomas Boleyn, Anne Boleyn's father, eventually inherited the manor, and it is possible that Anne was actually born there (her birth date remains unknown).
Upon Thomas's death in 1539 (Anne was already dead by then - 19th May 1536), the estate fell into Henry VIII's hands and he bestowed it upon Anne of Cleves after their marriage was declared null and void.
What a pleasant fellow.

Click to find out more

Photography was not permitted inside the manor itself, but I managed to get a couple of pictures of the gatehouse.

 photo hever3_zps3vxf3vxd.jpg  photo hever4_zpshgrsh8ot.jpg  photo hever_zpsh9hcsgfv.jpg

All in all a good, interesting trip out, and I would definitely recommend a visit.


blouse - topshop via ebay (can't recall the price!)
skirt - topshop (£20, 5 years ago)
cardigan - topshop (£38, 3 years ago)

Friday, 24 July 2015

Wind in the Willows

A few weeks ago, the boy and I decided to pay our local reservoir a visit. It was a beautiful day, and to our delight, we discovered that a Wind in the Willows trail had been constructed.

I read the book aged 8, and absolutely loved Mr Toad.

 photo DSCF0363_zpscbahbmsu.jpg

I lost my copy long ago, and this trail encouraged me to buy another copy on ebay (£2.81). I bought a children's copy, and it has amazing illustrations. It definitely is a classic!

 photo DSCF0372_zpsb5qvzk8y.jpg  photo DSCF0362_zpscj9swqr0.jpg  photo DSCF0361_zpspwujnfay.jpg  photo DSCF0360_zpsq3nht0pq.jpg  photo DSCF0356_zpsg3uzqc5l.jpg

We're off to Hever Castle on Tuesday, very excited :)


cardigan - h&m (£19.99, 6 years ago)
dress - topshop via a charity shop (£4.99)
boots - primark (£12)
bag - topshop (25)

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Long time no see (again!)

It feels like i've not posted for an age!

The only excuse i have is that i have been up to nothing remotely interesting (save for writing and uni work)

We took a walk around Sandford Lock last sunday before getting soaked in the rain (luckily we'd already scoffed our picnic)

 photo 11694754_10154067414962178_1123407437774205004_n_zpsvhmfodzw.jpg  photo 10985872_10154067414202178_9007322038718751341_n_zpsz2wskmpl.jpg  photo 10409119_10154067413262178_568380916255114234_n_zpshkzuix08.jpg

And we got a lot of money back from E-on so i treated myself to a few bits (and books - not pictured)

 photo DSCF0329_zpsw2uhndhl.jpg

We both have a week off work soon so we're hoping to have a few trips out! Fingers crossed, anyway.


dress - topshop via a charity shop (around £4.99)
bag - h&m via a charity shop (£1.99)
shoes - topshop in the sale (£15) - a recent puchase.

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Magna Carta Exhibition

On the 21st May, myself and the boy travelled to The British Library for the Magna Carta exhibition. I'd booked the tickets well in advance (in Feb!), so all we had to do was pay the extortionate train fare.
We had a packed lunch in the sunshine before going inside, and I had my bottle of water promptly taken away from me upon entering the exhibition! This has happened to me many times (most notably at Reading Festival when my bodyspray was snatched).

The exhibition itself was wonderful - lots of Anglo-Norman and Latin texts, videos and images, and one of the Magna Cartas itself at the very end.
I skipped past a lot of of the American Bill of Rights stuff as it was quite tedious. I am aware of the importance of the document, its just that I don't care for it (like a lot of WW1 and WW2 history).

As a History student and budding novelist, this was very useful for me.
But even if you're not a History lover, it is interesting. Its the most important piece of legislation in the world - and its from England *smug face*.

 photo DSCF0265_zpse4xdwcjf.jpg

Magna Carta prevented Kings of England from tyranny, and from bestowing illegal tax on the people of England.
By the reign of King Henry III (John's son), Magna Carta was largely ignored and The Provisions of Oxford were introduced by Henry's brother in law, Simon de Montfort at the "Mad Parliament". A council of 15 were chosen to have authority over Henry, but within a few years it was rendered useless when Henry again refused to abide by it.

Henry regained power!

Anyway, I have gone on a tangent. I might pick up on this point in another blog post.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Pleshey Castle

Last Sunday, myself and the boy visited the earthworks of the motte and bailey castle that is Pleshey. The land itself has not been interfered with much since its construction after duke William's victory at the battle of Hastings, so there were many knolls and steep slopes. The castle does not exist today (as to be expected).

 photo DSCF0253_zpsdevd96i5.jpg

The land is now private, so we were actually very lucky to be able to go and visit. I had not understood exactly why it is not open to the public, but I soon found out. A bridge exists over the fosse which has the potential to cause many an accident. This bridge conjoins the man-made motte (hill), with what we see today as a green hilly clearing (the boy called it a sun-trap - it was very hot on Sunday).

 photo DSCF0233_zpsvlhbc3ls.jpg  photo DSCF0231_zpssolitxjk.jpg   photo DSCF0234_zpsdtmqqqnq.jpg  photo DSCF0240_zpsbilw9iqr.jpg  photo DSCF0245_zpsmtprornu.jpg  photo DSCF0247_zps32nx6upn.jpg

The event we attended, was a medieval fayre. There were market stalls, a jester, and a kind of fashion show, which focused on what folk wore in the 12/13 century.
The reason this fayre focused on this period, is because of the 800th anniversary of the signing of Magna Carta. Geoffrey de Mandeville was one of the barons who forced King John into signing the great charter at Runnymede in 1215, and was residing at Pleshey Castle at this point.

If you wish to find out more, click here - pleshey castle

The dress I am wearing is from Topshop, and was purchased last year in a sale (about £20).

Monday, 27 April 2015

Now the last poppy has fallen

Our local museum is running a temporary exhibition at the moment (until May 31st), about the shire of Essex's part to play in the Great War.

 photo DSCF0199_zpsedpf51p1.jpg  photo DSCF0200_zpsy7s2kkhl.jpg  photo DSCF0201_zpsa9lafz1t.jpg

It is interesting to read about how many men were called to arms (420 from the town of Witham) and how the women coped with their loved ones abroad, fighting.
These days when soldiers are away from home, phone calls and skype messaging are possible. Imagine being a young pregnant woman of 20 whose husband has been called to arms, and is unsure if he will ever return to her... I have to admit, it is quite difficult.

Unfortunately, this is the boy's favoured historic era and not mine, but then, that might be because of GCSE History. Almost two years were spent covering this war, and WW2, and I eventually left school feeling rather drained!


 photo DSCF0204_zpsxoy87vbp.jpg

coat - primark via a blog sale (£12.99)
skirt - h&m (£3.99)
cat-print t-shirt - topshop via a charity shop (£2.99)
bag - h&m via a charity shop (£1.99)
brogues - topshop in a sale about 3 years ago (£25)