New in! (& a 10% off discount code)

29.2.12

I've added a few new things to both of my shops over the past week or so and I thought it was time for an update on my blog. If you're on Etsy be sure to let me know your username and I'll have a nosy :) I could literally spend hours (and sometimes I do!) looking at handmade goodies on there and I have bought all manner of things from various sellers. It's fab!

There are so many things I want to make, and I have supplies arriving all the time (poor postman), it's just finding the daylight to photograph them. If only I could give up work and make jewellery all day I'd be a happy bunny. Talking of bunnies...


Delicate gold heart bracelet - I'm in love with this bracelet. It is so delicate and dainty. I have kept one for myself and popped one in my Etsy shop. I have enough to make a couple more but if there is the interest I'll get my supplies fully stocked.



And a few other things too...

Happy shopping! (Psst.. get 10% off your entire order for the next 24 hours using code LILYLOVESLOLA10 at the checkout).

Thackray Medical Museum - Leeds.

26.2.12

If you're from West Yorkshire you're probably familiar with Thackray Medical Museum and most likely you went there on a school trip at some point. When I was younger I went with school and with friends, and my Mum and I used to go together too. We would get the bus into the centre of Leeds and then walk across to the museum. I love this place!

Jonathan and I have had a few days off work so we decided to visit on Friday. It's fair to say I was pretty excited! I'm a massive geek when it comes to stuff like this, and my love for Thackray is on a par with Eden Camp.


The first bit scared me so much as a youngster and not much has changed. You step back in time to 1842 and work your way round streets, shops and houses from that era complete with the sights and smells from that time. It's absolutely mad how poor living conditions were and how low your chances of living a long/healthy life were, or even surviving past your 1st birthday!

At the start you pick a character and at the end you see if they survived their ailments. I picked wisely with my character living to the ripe old age of 70-something. Jonathan didn't fair so well. He got diphtheria and died aged 11! :(

The rest of the museum is full of medical instruments, medicines, machines, facts, hands-on activities and even a film of someone's leg being sawn off if that floats your boat. I even tried on an empathy belly and boy, that thing was heavy!


We spent a couple of hours there but could have easily spent much longer had we read everything along the way. There's so much information to take in and it's really fascinating to see how things were back in the day. Some of the treatments prescribed to people were mad!

If you live nearby and haven't visited it's definitely worth a trip. It was fairly quiet when we visited, with it being a week day. There were a couple of schools there (some cute little ones, and some not so cute older kids) and a few other couples but apart from that we had most sections to ourselves.

For £7.00 each we have a ticket valid for 1 year and with parking at just £1 I'd say it's a bargain of a day out. Plus you may learn a thing or two!

Legally Blonde: The Musical (& my new clutch bag!)

24.2.12

Last Friday my friend Katy and I went to watch Legally Blonde: The Musical at The Lyceum Theatre in Sheffield. It was a late birthday celebration for me but we booked the tickets so long ago we almost forgot we had them!

It was a great show with the part of Elle being played by the understudy who (with a blonde wig on) looked just like Reese Witherspoon. Ray Quinn and Les Dennis were the familiar faces but the whole cast were great. It was rather cheesy and some songs weren't as catchy as others, but the main songs made up for it. I have even caught Jonathan singing one of the songs that I haven't been able to get out of my head, and he didn't even go!

I have been looking for a new smart/'going out' bag for a while. One big enough to hold all of the essentials but not too big. And I'm partial to a clutch bag. So, when the Freestyle big clutch by Friis & Company caught my eye I popped it in my basket with my latest ambassador code on Sarenza and it arrived just in time to accompany me to the theatre.

Clutch bag c/o Sarenza

I really do love it. It is leather so it smells amazing, will last for ages and as it's black no doubt it will go with everything, both smart and casual. There's absolutely loads of room inside for the array of items I like to carry round with me.

Have you seen Legally Blonde: The Musical? Thoughts?

Do you carry your life around in your handbag like me?

Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday Summary.

20.2.12

I always start these off the same way - "it has been ages since I did one of these!" It's not that I haven't had good things going on, but more like a distinct lack of time. Between working full time, making/selling jewellery part time, 2 Pugs, a boyfriend, work outs, seeing friends and seeing family there isn't much time for blogging at the moment *sob* But I am determined to make time for you lovely lot.

Wise words (source)
 

My 5 good things:

1) My Sister and I may finally have found me a bridesmaid dress! The one we really wanted sold out everywhere and every time we thought we had found one in my size it slipped from our grasp. It wasn't meant to be, but that's fine because we found another beautiful dress which fits me like a glove! Now I just need to find inspiration for hairdos and makeup, book a contact lens assessment and get rid of my pasty Winter skin then I'm almost ready! Vegas here we come!

2) We had a lovely Valentine's Day in our household completely avoiding the day itself and definitely avoiding venturing out, and instead the Saturday before we had a lovely evening in. I got home from seeing my friend in the afternoon to this and I just had to run back downstairs to film it for keeps:

Valentine's surprise. from Victoria Jackson on Vimeo.


I was so overwhelmed! I found Jonathan in a room upstairs holding some roses. Then he cooked dinner which consisted of goats cheese and pear bruschetta which was heavenly, followed by homemade salmon and crab fishcakes with asparagus and new potatoes (followed by some of my homemade rocky road for afters). He really is a keeper! Oh, and he also made pomegranate vodka cocktails from scratch, the clever so-and-so.

3) Suits. Have any of you been watching this? We needed a new series to follow after watching and finishing all EIGHT series of '24' over the past few months and Suits is brilliant. Very different to '24' but brilliant nonetheless.

4) Making jewellery. I have had a bit of a shuffle round recently and decided, for now, to keep my bigcartel store for friendship bracelets and use my Etsy store for the other kind of jewellery that I make. It makes things easier for me, avoids duplicating everything and keeps costs down, and I enjoy using Etsy as there's a great community on there. If you have an Etsy account (or shop) do leave a comment to let me know what your username is and I'll be sure to pop on by.



5) My new workout: Davina - Ultimate Target. I love it! I come home from work and actually want to work out. This may be due to the honeymoon phase in that the moves are still fresh and new and I can't get bored of it yet but we shall see. I may add one or two other Davina dvds to my collection to mix things up a bit. (Proper review of this coming soon!)


What are your 5 good things?

Mini egg Rocky Road.

18.2.12

I adore Rocky Road. What's not to love about it. You can whip some up in minutes, there's no baking involved and after a short blast in the fridge it's ready to eat. I've made quite a few batches now and at first I stuck rigidly to recipes which always turned out okay but never perfect. So as a little treat for Jonathan, and because he loves mini eggs so much (see my mini egg cupcakes and cookies here) I thought I'd make a batch of mini egg rocky road. I didn't use a recipe at all, just a little imagination.


Previous recipes I have used included butter, sugar, golden syrup and other such additions to the melted chocolate mix. I decided to omit these things as I find the butter stops the mixture from setting to a chocolate bar consistency, and lets face it - it doesn't need any more sugar!

I used:

3 bars of Sainsbury's own milk chocolate
Marshmallows
Fudge bars
Biscuits (I used hobnobs but any will do!)
Mini eggs

I melted the chocolate in a bowl resting on a pan of boiling water and whilst that was slowly melting I chopped up my goodies. Once the chocolate was fully melted I slowly added my bits and pieces (apart from the mini eggs) until I had enough in there. Don't overload your mixture too soon otherwise your rocky road may end up a bit too rocky.

I transferred my mixture onto some greaseproof paper in a bowl and then pushed mini eggs into the mixture so that they were visible. After a few hours in the fridge they were good to go! I cut them into bitesize pieces and then we proceeded to eat them all within 24 hours. Yum!

What do you put in yours?

Woodhall Spa & Lincoln.

12.2.12

As you may have seen here Jonathan and I took a trip to Woodhall Spa and Lincoln for my birthday. We fancied getting away for a couple of days and when I saw Gemma's post "kinema in the woods" I thought this would be a great place for us to visit.

I found an adorable B&B in Woodhall Spa and got us booked in for one night and the rest, we decided, we would plan as we went along.

It didn't take very long to drive there at all so after a hectic morning of getting up at 6.30am to drive to Leeds to drop Lily and Lola off with my parents then getting home, getting ready and having brekkie I was ready to relax and play the part of passenger for a while. With my iPhone map, a packet of Percy Pigs and camera in hand off we went!

When we arrived in Woodhall Spa we dropped our things off at the B&B and after a chat with the lovely couple who run it and marvelling at how adorable our room was, we headed out, wrapped up warm, to explore.

Top: Some local attractions / Jonathan doing a spot of "tree hugging"
Bottom: The road leading to the B&B / The only nice photo of me which Jonathan ruined :) Also, that is snow and not dandruff.. honest!

We found the Kinema in the Woods and both agreed it was the most wonderful place ever. If this was my local cinema I would be here every week!

We nosied at the Kinema a few times during our stay and saw it pre-snow, post-snow, in the light and in the dark and it looked great every time. We also went to watch a film (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and it was the most surreal experience, like we had stepped back in time. The best part was the interval where we were treated to some piano playing and a few jokes from the piano player.

The Kinema in the Woods - outside and inside.

It was dark by the time we left the Kinema but we had a wander around anyway, earmarking all of the places we wanted to go back to the following morning. By this point we were hungry (despite numerous cinema snacks and hot chocolate!) so we headed for some grub and then a relatively early night as we were pooped!

The following morning, after a huge full English breakfast with tea and toast at the B&B, we loaded up the car and had one last walk around the town visiting an amazing deli which you can see in the video I made. We loaded up on sweet treats for later on in the day.

Walking round the town

Before we drove to Lincoln we stopped at the Petwood Hotel which was stunning. You can read a little about its history here. We really fell in love with this place and thought it would be a wonderful place to tie the knot. Ooh er! ;)

The Petwood Hotel.

It didn't take long to drive to Lincoln so we had plenty of time to wander around the centre and visit the array of little shops on offer. It was ab-sol-utely freezing so we were glad to find warmth inside whenever we could. My favourite shop was the vintage clothes shop which had so many amazing things inside. We bought a few bits and bobs from other places, including some artwork by a local artist and some vintage-style postcards from a huge bookshop full of old and new books. We're going to put the postcards into frames to hang in our home.

Wandering around Lincoln / The most beautiful blue house!

We went inside the Cathedral and marvelled at the outside and how beautiful it was. Then after being outside for so long we were longing for a cup of tea to warm our cockles so we visited a little tea shop. This gave us chance to warm up and rest our tired feet before making our way back to the car and back home.


Have you been to Woodhall Spa and/or Lincoln? Do you live in either place? Let me know your recommendations of where to go incase we ever go back!

Converse - Chuck Taylor All Star.

6.2.12

We all know by now that Sarenza sell great womens shoes and bags and you have seen a selection of them on this very blog, but they do mens shoes too! Jonathan recently picked out a pair of Chuck Taylor All Star trainers from Converse (c/o Sarenza) which are currently priced at £51.00 for the style and colour he opted for.

Jonathan chose the classic white pair which have a simple red stripe and the All Star logo on the back. This style comes in a whole host of colours. I just had a wee browse myself and I literally couldn't pick my favourite. Although I do really like white as it's very classic and I think Jonathan looks very dashing in them.


What does Jonathan think? He really likes them! He says they are very comfortable and he knows they will last for ages because Converse are such a good quality brand. He says they are perfect for so many occasions and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. 

How have Jonathan's legs fared in his first modelling debut? And does your chap like Converse?


The unbeatable Chuck Taylor All Star from Converse has arrived at Sarenza! Made legendary by the NBA basketball player Chuck Taylor, it is still a must-have in the wardrobes of fashionistas and more traditional wearers alike. It was actually in 1917, in Massachusetts, that the first Converse saw the light of day - it was all black and only intended for basketball players. And so it was that for more than 40 years, Converse shoes were exclusively reserved for use in sports. Everything changed when Chuck Taylor decided to wear only Converse shoes for a whole season.

A sneak peek (Woodhall Spa & Lincoln road trip).

5.2.12

Last Thursday and Friday Jonathan and I took a mini road trip to Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire and on our way home we popped into the centre of Lincoln. It was a great trip and we both fully adore Woodhall Spa now.  What a wonderful place. If you live there I'm certainly very jealous.

The great thing was it didn't take long to get there at all so we had plenty of time to see the things we had on our list, and thanks to the recommendations of the people we stayed with we saw a few extra things too.

I've got plenty of photos to share with you but in the meantime here's a video I put together. I hope you enjoy it!

Woodhall Spa/Lincoln road trip. from Victoria Jackson on Vimeo.


(The music is from The Artist soundtrack. If you haven't seen this film I suggest you go. Immediately!)

Happy Birthday me.

3.2.12

Today I turn the big 2-7 and have had a wonderful day so far. We are home from our trip away now and I'm really excited to share the photos and videos with you. We had such a great time. A special thanks to Jonathan for making my birthday so much fun. I have spent the last 2 days eating these kinds of foods:


But it's my birthday so I'm allowed :)