Thursday, 30 April 2009


I would like my hair to look like this.....currently it looks like this........

I am not joking! I hate having to grow it for the wedding and I want Sophie's hair - actually that's a lie - I just want to be her! Have you seen her new cook book? SO jealous.

Anyway my beloved hairdresser arrives at 12.30pm on Saturday 22nd August (yes the day after the wedding - I don't care if I'm so hungover that someone else has to hold my head up for me - I just want it cut). She'll chop off my ratty do so that I can bounce my way glossily to the airport (with my fingers crossed that Cape Town is experiencing a spot of 0% humidity).

Other news today:
*Mr Jones is now in Prague for his stag do - I am suitably anxious about his wellbeing.
*I have been to another spinning class and my bottom doesn't feel like it's about to fall off and I don't wince when asked to sit - this must be progress?
*I have gained 3lbs this week - despite exercising like a fiend - I blame bread - it's food of the devil.
*I had a dream last night that Mr Jones tried to pierce my ear drum with a cinnamon stick (don't ask!)
*Mr Jones had a dream that we'd been invited to the Birkett-Smiths for dinner, had a few too many and fell asleep on the sofa. He woke up being shouted at by Mrs B-S who had apparently made a cheese board for pudding and was annoyed that no one was eating it. How truly bizarre - he never dreams.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

All hail Martha

Ms Stewart never fails to revive my wedding excitement. British wedding mags do one of two things to me - a)send me into a blind panic with their lists of things I should have done by now or b)make me cross that I can't afford all the things that "Melissa and George" or "Courtney and Reginald" had at their wedding.

But Martha - she makes me feel calm, and inspires me with many a homemade project which she reassuringly tells me I can download the templates for from her website and whip up in a jiffy, with neither excruiating damage to my purse or a spike in my stress levels. (The reader should note that I haven't once attempted any of these projects for fear of dispelling the myth by things turning just a little bit Blue Peter).

Happy birthday to the matron of honour - I hope you like your presents.

Monday, 27 April 2009

My last birthday as Miss Speechley....

...Yesterday I was 29 - and it was my very last birthday as a Miss and the beginning of the final year of my twenties. Quite a weird thought. Next year not only will I be Mrs Jones, I'll be 30 too - now that does all seem a bit too grown up. I pointed this out to the Mother of the Bride who assured me that when I have a daughter who is getting married and turning 30, I'd be entitled to complain - until then I should suck it up and be thankful I'm not over 50 (not that she is of course - what are you Mum - about 43?)

Mr Jones did a very good assembly job on the ingredients I'd bought for my own breakfast-in-bed the day before and presented me with yogurt, fruit compote and granola (all in separate bowls - he was worried about proportions apparently) and some orange juice. It was lovely - and I only had to ask him twice to go and get it!

I opened my presents - lots of lovely goodies for the honeymoon, some of which are too big for the newly slim me (hurrah - 9st 13 on the old scales this morning - can't remember the last time I was 9st anything!), so I'll have to return them for a smaller size, hooray.

I went to the gym and when I swiped my card it played happy birthday to me - most embarrassing - but luckily only myself and Mrs Silva Medd were in reception at the time.

Having burned sufficient calories we went to the Tobie Norris for a long awaited pizza - which was delicious. All in all a good day. Thanks to all who made it special.

Suits, rings and things

Today I took the groomsmen for their suit fitting. The best man and one of the ushers are now on my "List of people to ridicule for their inept-ness". Our appointment was at 10am - they arrived 25 minutes late - much to my disgust and consternation. Apparently getting the wheels balanced on the car was far more important than being on time.

The Mother of the Bride had words and warned them that I wasn't to be crossed when it comes to anything wedding related. I also pointed out that a repeat performance of such behaviour would be dealt with with the help of some garden shears and a particular part of their anatomy. I feel they were suitably redressed and fingers crossed will be on time for anything else "wedding" in future.

Mr Jones and I also sorted out the wedding rings - neither of which are yellow gold with purple stones - so it seems my dream was unfounded. However given the demonstation of unreliability on the best man's part, I shall be giving the rings to someone far more trustworthy on the wedding day and they'll be put into his sweaty palms just minutes before I walk down the aisle.

The mother and father of the bride made a miraculous discovery at Tesco - three bottles of £9.99 Sauvignon Blanc for £9.99 - yes you read that right - and with their five per cent off when you buy six bottles or more that makes quite a saving. Prepare to drink Sauv at the wedding. Who needs a booze cruise when you can pop to Tesco. (Unfortunately if you live in the Camrbridge or Peterborough areas you won't be able to take advantage of this offer - because we've cleared them out - Sorry about that!)

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Shoots and spas

My fashion filled week continued with a photoshoot today. I wore the top I was going to wear for the engagement shoot. Thank goodness that it was postponed. It does not photograph well - the words you, great, fat, lard and arse, sprung to mind whenever a test shot of me sprung up on screen - (when running a shoot I spend a lot of time tarting about in front of the camera - for lighting purposes you understand).

Said top - which I loved - will now be relegated to the bottom of the wardrobe. Fingers crossed my birthday will bring the means to restock my wardrobe with clothes that are flattering and fit properly. If you have any suggestions as to what I should wear do let me know.

Thankfully todays fat traumas will be soothed away by a day at the spa tomorrow with the mother of the bride and the matron of honour. Lovely

Oh not to be a fashionista

Ah the joy of the autumn/winter fashion press shows! My predilection for all things Boden means that I will never, ever, be what is known as a fashionista. And I thank the Lord for that. It means that I will not - come Autumn/Winter 2009 be sporting leggings, shoulder pads, mini dresses, tassles, epaulettes, large jumpers with dubious designs knitted on them or anything that resembles the wardrobe from Flash Dance. For that my lovelies is what the fashion establishment would have us wear when the weather turns chilly again.

I found it hard to mask the disgust on my face at the thought of having to wear this trash come August (quick go out and buy normal clothes before this tosh hits the racks). However it seems the rest of the fashion establishment - made up of ladies of a certain age dressed head to toe in black and sporting Anna Wintour bobs, gay men dressed head to toe in anything designer and posing with their man bags and bald heads, and the twiglets - young, nubile fashion cupboard fairies who haven't been around long enough to know that a purple mini dress and shoe boot sky scraper heels don't make good press show wear - are either incredibly good at poker faces or were actually filled with sheer delight at the 1987 revival (surely they have photographic evidence of how bad we all looked first time around? Though I profess to have been too young to know any better!)

I, dressed head to toe in Boden, made a hasty retreat for fear that bad taste is catching. If you're lucky you'll never get to see these monstrosities - they rarely make it to store - unless of course the Vogue editors are misguided enough to turn them into fashion.

One wonders what fashionista's wear when they get married - fingerless lace gloves, holey fish nets and a back combed, dip dyed hair do no doubt!

Curries and cocktails

Myself, the matron of honour and the father of the bride all celebrate our birthdays in the space of a week. The Birthday Weekend has been an annual tradition for many years - it usually goes something like this - 7pm enter Browns, put £50 in the kitty each and start ordering cocktails. Keep the rounds going until around 9.30pm - the drinking only to be punctuated by a few snacks, snaffled from a handbag (they charge an extortinate amount for nuts in these places). 9.30pm - slide off bar stool and stumble through the streets of Cambridge to find a suitable eaterie that will admit people in a state of quite such inebriation. Stuff down dinner and pour yourself into a taxi before midnight, when they ramp up the prices - pray fervently that the cab gets you home before a) you're sick in your handbag, or b) the meter ticks over to more than you have left in your purse.

This year was no exception and a good time was had by all. I recommend the Apple Blighty Mojitos. Mr Jones does not recommend the blue concoction above - though why he chose such a girly drink in the first place is quite beyond us all. Last year Mr Jones asked the father of the bride for my hand in marriage while at the bar ordering the cocktails. SO that perhaps out ranks this year as the best Birthday Weekend ever - although nothing will quite beat the first year, when the matron of honour and I were quite overcome by the celebrity that is Rory McGrath - and in our drunken state posed for a photograph with him lecherously draped around our shoulders.

On Saturday....

...The mother of the bride, the matron of honour and I had a brief, but successful shopping trip. The mother of the bride's outfit has been suitably accessorised (hurrah) and she found herself a rather lovely jacket to wear with jeans. I bought a dress for the hen do that makes me look marvellously slim, and the matron of honour tried on a lot of hats for our amusement.

On Friday...

... Mr Jones thought I sounded cross and grumpy - so he bought me some flowers - isn't he lovely? They were received with a beaming smile of gratitude, unlike his previous gifts.

My wrists have been slapped...

...the Mother of the Bride has been most cross this week and has been sending me emails demanding that I update the blog on an almost daily basis. It seems she needs me to help her while away the hours at work. However this week has been a mixture of currys and cocktails, shoots and shows and until now I haven't had time - so I apologise if you've been feeling equally bereft and I do hope that the missives that are to follow will brighten up a dull friday afternoon.

Friday, 17 April 2009

I had a dream last night...

...that Mr Jones and I forgot to buy wedding rings. I was wearing a floral 50s style prom dress and Mr Jones was wearing brown cords. It was sunny and everyone looked very summery. Upon finding we had no rings we appealed to the assembled crowd for help. I was presented with a huge yellow-gold vintage ring with a purple stone and a scalloped edge (was it yours?). It was very strange and very real - and perhaps just a gentle subconscious nudge to get out and find some (tasteful) wedding rings. Mr Jones please take note.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

I'm back...

There - that didn't last long did it. Here I am again in the world of weddings.

Our first RSVP dropped onto the mat yesterday. From Mr Ruggles - a single gentleman, who you'd expect not to be the slightest bit interested in weddings, but it seems he'll be there with bells on (not literally - I don't think he's into Morris Dancing - but then maybe I'm wrong?). It made my day - so thank you Rooglies, we'll look forward to catching up with you on the 21st. It's been a while, so in case we've changed a lot I'll be the one in the veil and Mr Jones will be wearing a top hat.

It seems the Mother of the Bride's living room has been turned into some kind of bunting making sweat shop. The matron of honour is popping over for tea later and has apparently been enlisted to help - bless her. The father of the bride is having nothing what so ever to do with it - so I've been told.

In other news this week - I have ordered a few more bits and bobs for the wedding - fabric, wall paper, aprons, picture frames, mdf and hinges. Intrigued as to what I'll be doing with all that? You'll just have to wait and see!

Oh and I'm still collecting Bonne Marman Jars - so do send me yours.


Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Can we talk about something else?

I often wonder what people talked to me about before I got engaged? Perhaps it was those endless discussions about why on earth after seven years together Mr Jones still hadn't proposed? But ever since April 25th last year the main topic of conversation has been "the wedding".

I never thought I'd say it, but I'm well and truly bored of discussing it. Me - the girl who couldn't wait to be a bride, who loves to organise and arrange, who revels in being the hostess - yes me - the wedding fanatic is thoroughly wedding'd out.

So, if you see me in the next day or two please don't ask me how the plans are coming along, how many RSVPs I've had (not enough!), whether I've made my final floral decisions, if the mother of the bride has found her shoes yet (no), whether Mr Jones has tried his suit on yet (no!) or if the cats will be coming to the wedding (no, no, no)? If you do I may a) weep bitterly on you for several hours, or b) scratch your eyes out.

Let's talk about something else - the weather, or what we had for tea, what we're doing at the weekend or whether or not the FIA are indeed sleeping with the entire Ferrai F1 team?

Thank you so very much xoxo

PS - I'm sure this is just a phase and I'll be boring you with details again very soon! Oooh did I tell you I saw a rather fetching floral Laura Ashley umbrella today?

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Bootcamp update #5

Mr Jones and I have no need for trainers or squash rackets or peppy aerobics instructors this weekend. We have reinvented ourselves and have become dab hands at patio laying. I can still "feel the burn" in my back and I've been sat down for three hours so it must be doing the job. (I can almost hear the osteopath rubbing his hands together).

The weather being typically British hasn't put us off, a bit of drizzle doesn't hurt and apparently freezing your a** off helps to burn more calories. One patio down and a path and another patio to go. I am currently wondering how I shall manage tomorrow - given that my arms are no longer functioning and I'm having to type this with my tongue.

The cats will be no help - they've been languishing on the sofa all day eating easter eggs and sipping gin. Oh well Mr Jones has promised me a BBQ on the new patio tomorrow evening as an incentive to keep shoveling the cement. It will of course be a thoroughly English affair involving brollies, large amounts of parafin, a few charred sausages and a lot of flame fanning and swearing - until we give up and shove everything under the grill. Would you like to come - My potato salad is to die for?

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Wanted: Bonne Maman Jam Jars

If you're rather partial to jam on your toast,croissants, pancakes, sandwiches, scones or Victoria sponges with cream (yes - I've been on a diet for a while!), and you like to treat yourself to a bit of Bonne Maman luxury every now and again, would you mind giving the empty jar a quick rinse and letting me have it? I'll put it to good use - I promise.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

A brief straw poll....

... of married friends has revealed that Mr Jones' behaviour is far from unusual. In fact I'm beginning to think I was rather naive in thinking that any man is remotely interested in their wedding. Of the men polled the general consensus was that men who are interested in weddings clearly aren't "real men". Oh well!

Monday, 6 April 2009

Is your groom-to-be bothered?

Today Mr Jones and I had a conversation about the wedding. It began after Mr Jones called a coach company for a quote to get our guests to and from Lyveden - which is in the back of beyond. Apparently once he put the phone down I was supposed to give him a round of applause, hug him, kiss him and tell him what a bloody marvellous job he'd done - ta very much.

Unfortunately I didn't do this. I asked him why he had told the coach company to pick people up at 3.30pm when I'd clearly said 3.15pm and why he'd also added an extra hour onto the end of our wedding? This was met with some terse words about my being ungrateful, picky and far too unapprecative of his efforts to help.

The conversation then turned to the fact that I rarely receive a thank you for all my efforts and that if I did he'd be doing nothing but thank me 24 hours a day. Things esculated and it turned into one of those jolly little discussions that result in my eyes brimming with tears and Mr Jones doing a lot of stomping and looking at me with contempt and despair.

The result of this exchange, as far as I can gather, is this: The wedding is 90 per cent about me and only 10 per cent about Mr Jones (he assures me said 10 per cent is basically the fact that he wants to marry me and spend the rest of his life with me -and this did go someway to assuage my ill humour).

Mr Jones isn't really interested in the other 90 per cent of the day because he's sure that whatever I decide to do will be just lovely. He therefore doesn't have an opinion on anything and doesn't say: "Whatever you think is best dear" to annoy me - but because truly he really couldn't give a monkeys.

Now I don't know about you, but I find this all rather upsetting. I'd like it to be "our" wedding and for it to be about both of us. I never really thought he was serious when he said that he'd just be turning up on the day - but it seems that's the plan.

So if come the 21st August you see Mr Jones, dressed in his full wedding regalia, wondering around Lyveden gazing in open mouthed amazement - please point him in the direction of the aisle - because I'm pretty sure he won't have a clue where it is!

Sunday, 5 April 2009


Our invitations (which are in the post box as we speak - hurrah!) were beautifully designed by Miss Clare Derry and carefully printed by Mr James Swift. Our thanks to you both. Should you wish to make use of Miss Derry's artistic skills do let me know and I'll pass on your details. We look forward to receiving your RSVPs (oooh getting excited now!)

How to be a domestic goddess

1. Don a Cath Kidston Pinny.
2. Artfully throw ingredients into your kitchenaid Mixer
3. Whip up delicious tasting chocolate cupcake batter and lick fingers provocatively (despite the fact that your cat is your only audience)
4. Use an ice cream scoop to meticulously fill cupcake cases with said mixture so that your cakes come out perfectly sized.
5. Open the door of your preheated oven, But do it so cleverly that you open it directly onto your tray of ready-to-bake cupcakes so that they beautifully garnish your kitchen floor with chocolate flavoured goo.
6. Swear profusely, stamp your feet - clear up and start again from step two. Then spend the next five hours whipping up delightful confections to sell at a Strawberry Tea in aid of Breast Cancer Care.
7.Pour yourself a very large Gin and Tonic at 10.45pm - drink it fast and then wake up at 3.45am after having a dream about Jade Goody stealing your bone china tea set. Just call me Nigella.

My kitchen floor will be sorry to hear that I will be joined in my domestic goddessry when baking for the wedding by the Mother of the Bride and the Matron of Honour. So worry not - there will be enough cake for you all. Although we can't promise that their will be much Gin left in the country by the end of it all.

PS - To cook the above scones (which were delicious - even if I do say so myself) - see pg 67 How to Be a Domestic Goddess By Nigella Lawson

Friday, 3 April 2009

oooooh rubbish!

Today I'm tired and I have a huge spot and another on the way. Today I'm grumpy - fingers crossed I shall be more cheerful tomorrow!

Ps Have I ever told you that I hate ferrari's and all who sail in them?

Thursday, 2 April 2009

oh the tat!

Who'd have thought it would be so damn difficult to find a stylish guest book? Call me picky, but I don't want a book made out of recycled paper with horrid red petals in it. I don't want one with fake roses on it, or cartoon people, or hearts or mother of pearl. I don't want to pay £150 for one either. I would just like something simple - perhaps with a linen cover or even just something very plain that I can then customize to suit our wedding. But can I find one? Of course not - all I can find is tat!
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