Sunday 25 July 2010

California Dreaming

Aaaah the Mamas and Papas - don't you just love em?

But I digress, dear readers, as the main aim of this post is to announce that California Dreaming is about to become a reality for the J and P family. Yes, folks, we're off on our hols. To California! How exciting is that!

Our first stop will be San Francisco and I'm sooooo excited as I intend to visit a good few thrift and goodwill stores while I'm there. Just look at these fine examples of thrift store interiors:

Racks and shelves and aisle of STUFF. Oh I can't wait. Mr J and P is muttering something which sounds like "I am not flying all the way to San Francisco just to go charity shopping." Let's ignore him shall we, dear readers?

From San Francisco, we go to Yosemite Valley and then southwards to places like the Joshua Tree National Park, Pallisade Glacier, Mohave Desert. From the interior, we head to the coast and travel back north to San Fran.

Hope we don't see these critters on our travel in the wilds of California:

a black bear.

a mountain lion (apparently, more than half of California is mountain lion habitat - lawks a lordy!).

Mr J and P is insisting we visit Death Valley. Frankly, I'm not keen, as, according to the guide book, it is the hottest place on earth (yikes...)! Mr J and P is now trying to tell me that Death Valley is one big charity shop - ha ha ha, now he's being just plain silly.

On that note, I'll love you and leave you. Hope you have a great summer, dear readers. Missing you already.......

Tuesday 20 July 2010

Wallpaper Whimsy

One of the many projects I have whizzing around my head to do is wallpapering our downstairs loo with vintage wallpaper. I discovered this little gem in a charity shop a while back:

Want a closer look (or not as the case may be)? Here it is again in all its garish glory:

Fabulous isn't it? Mr J and P is muttering something about "gaudy" and "hideous". What a cheek!

However, yesterday I found another roll of vintage wallpaper in the charity shop and I think that this may be THE ONE:

A real beauty don't you think? And especially at £1.50 for the roll.

Oh which one to go for.... I'll keep you pasted oops I mean posted... Did you see that coming? I must apologise, it was a very bad pun indeed. I promise not to do that again.


Sunday 18 July 2010

Severe dodgem related injuries and an award!!

Greetings dear readers from a delicate headed blogger.

At Lovebox Festival on Saturday (see previous post), whose brilliant idea was it to site the dodgems within easy reach of a bunch of marauding 40 somethings (or in Mr J and P's case 50 something)? One abiding memory of the day was watching one friend on said dodgems driving around with one arm in the air whooping and yelping like a complete loon. I, for one, am currently suffering from severe dodgem related injuries: stiff neck and shoulder and achey knee and hip having been on the dodgems 5 times in total (how I had time to see any of the bands I do not know). And as for Mr J and P, well he virtually had to be stretchered home as he was feeling a little worse for wear (aaah bless).

Dear readers, this is what happens when a group of old timers, who don't get out much, are unleashed at a festival. They run amok.

Anyway, enough of this nonsense. The day was great. Paloma Faith was fab. We got a bit bored, dare I say, with Mark Ronson and it was at this point that we discovered the aforementioned dodgems. Rumours were abound that Duran Duran were joining him on stage, and one of our party did hear what sounded like "Planet Earth" in the distance but we were otherwise occupied. Roxy Music were, of course, fabulous. Love them!

Undoubtedly, the best news of the weekend was hearing that I've received an award!! Yes. Me!!! From the lovely Karen at Sitting Oh So Pretty. Here it is:

A "This Blog is Charming" award!! Thank you Karen. I now have to bore you all with a few things all about little old meeeeee. Here we go (this won't take long, promise..):

1. I suffer from mottephobia! A fear of moths. Attempting to leave the house one morning to take Little Miss J and P to school, I spied a rather large fat bodied moth on the inside of the front door. This meant, of course, that I couldn't leave the house! I had to send Miss J and P out to a neighbour who then had to come in and dispose of the moth before I could venture forth. How mad is that!

2. I don't know my right from my left. (Oh no, you're going to think I'm a right loon now).

3. My favourite near-death experience was many moons ago on a visit to Newcastle (north east England) to see friends. Five of us, crammed into a mini, decided to visit Lindisfarne (aka Holy Island) a tiny tidal island in the North Sea accessed by a causeway.

On arriving at the causeway, one of our party checked the safe crossing times and announced that high tide wasn't until 8 pm. So off we went, had a lovely day frolicking in and around the ruins of the priory and castle. Decided to leave at 3 pm as we had a coach to catch back to London.

On arriving at the causeway in the mini, the tide was (yes you guessed it )already coming in, rather fast, I might add (the aforementioned member of our party had mis-read the tide timetable). Foolishly, the male members of the party wanted to drive across the causeway regardless (coach to catch and Mr J and P was starting a new job the next day) so off we went with one member of the party jogging ahead (I kid you not) to guide us along because by this time, dear readers, the causeway was completely covered by the sea.

At some point, our good friend stopped and waved at us to go back. He climbed back in the car, having been knee-deep in water, and the driver had to reverse some distance back to the safety of land - bearing in mind, that you could see no road only sea. I remember all the while, my female friend saying her "Hail Marys" while I was convinced that we were all going to die!

We had to wait until 8 pm to cross the causeway safely at low tide and had to take the midnight coach back down to London (Mr J and P started his new job that morning with virtually zero sleep). Oh what fun we had....

4. I'm half Italian and half Polish but can speak neither language (nor any other language for that matter).

5. I've seen Madness (the band if you please) in concert 10 times. Impressive huh?

Now I have to pass the This Blog is Charming award to two other bloggers. Ooh this is hard as I love reading all my blog favourites, but I have to choose so here we go:

The Bounty Huntress. She's definitely worth a visit if you don't know her already. She's hilarious and always has an interesting story to tell about her thrifting adventures.

Pencils and Pins. Not only is she thrifting mad but she's creative and very talented as well.

Well, ttfn, early to bed for me (some people just can't take the pace can they?).

Tuesday 13 July 2010

A minor rant and a lot of Roxy

Browsing in one of my favourite local chazzer shops this week, I overheard one of the ladies working there saying to another that she wasn't looking forward to the new manager coming in next week and something about "a lot of changes."

I must admit that the thought of "changes" concerned me a little. The good thing about this particular charity shop, unlike the local "chain" charity shops which seem to specialise in uninspiring books, clothes and bric-a-brac, is that it has all the items that you just don't see anymore in lots of the bigger "chain" charity shops, namely: knitting needles, old knitting/sewing patterns, wool, bed linen, doilies, buttons, tea towels, aprons, granny blankies, etc etc. You know those quirky items that makes charity shopping fun.

As we all know, part of the joy of chazzing, is the thrill of the chase, the discovery of a little gem in and among the racks and shelves of bland High Street stuff. It's one thing upping the prices in charity shops but losing those interesting, unusual and kitsch items, well that would be a great shame.

Minor rant over (for now...).

On a different note completely, my good self and some friends are off (sans children) to Lovebox Festival on Saturday (Victoria Park, London). Just look at the line-up:

The highlight for us old timers will be ROXY MUSIC!!! Soooooooo excited!!!!!! Can't wait!!!!!!! Whoooooo Hoooooooooo!!

Er hem, must calm down (deep breaths)... Have a good w/end. TTFN.

Skippity doo dah part 2 and a jumble

I've been skip raiding again! On my way back from my yoga class last night, I spotted this little beauty peeping out amidst a discarded pink bathroom suite.

Wanna see some more?

Yes, a hangity hang shelfy type thing. It's not half bad for free is it? It just needs a clean and a spray (oh yes...) with my trusty spray paint. Can't decide what colour to go for. I'm planning to put it in our bathroom which is all white with a white and dark blue checked floor. I was thinking bright red for a change. Alternatively, an aqua/turquoise. Your thoughts, dear readers, would be much appreciated.

Our weekend was very busy - spent entertaining our good friends from Norfolk (2 adults, 3 children and a dog) and an old friend from Oz and her daughter. Before they all descended on Saturday afternoon, we managed to get to a JUMBLE SALE!! Huzzah! Oh the excitement! Unfortunately, it wasn't the word's best jumble sale, but we got a few items nontheless. Little Miss J and P got even more Whizzer and Chips/Beano/Dandy/Cor etc etc annuals to add to her rather worringly large and ever-increasing collection.

The rather large and ever-increasing collection here:

There are more annuals on shelves below and loads stuffed in here:

They're taking over as you can see.

Mr J and P got 2 demijohns to add to his collection of demijohns. Don't worry everyone, I'll spare you pictures of his demijohn collection.

I got this natty 70s bag for 50p:

A jug which I doubt is very old but pretty for 20p:

A needlecraft book from 1970:

It has one chapter entitled "64 useful stitches". Yes, I said 64!!

"Aprons as gifts are always welcome." Yes indeedy. Take a look:

Can anyone tell me why you would want to make an apron with very sheer nylon fabric as per the one in the top right corner (the one that looks like an enormous pair of see-through knickers)?

Lovely groovy armchair cover here:

I'm puzzled as to why there is a bowl of red peppers on the table. Most odd!

Top buy this week was Stevie Wonder's Definitive Collection (CD) for 50p which I don't think was ever played (why ever not?) but I more than made up for it on Saturday night that's for sure...

Thursday 8 July 2010


Just wanted to say that I'm taking part in ROSIE HEARTS' giveaway here. She's extremely talented and has a lovely blog if you don't know it already. Check it out tout de suite!!

Monday 5 July 2010

Skippity doo dah

Hello one and all. Apologies in advance but I’m going to have a little moan. Here it is – brace yourselves.... There have been no jumbles for an absolute age nor have I bought anything from a charity shop for what seems like weeks and weeks. OK, there I’ve said it. Sorry, but it’s true. I know. I’m sulking. I can’t help it.

No wonder I’ve had to resort to eyeing up the local skips (dumpsters to you peeps from overseas). Yes folks, I’ve been skip raiding!! On my way to work this morning I passed by a skip and what caught my eye was a large picture frame which I thought, on closer inspection, would be the ideal frame for the cork board that I’m planning on making – once I’ve collected enough corks that is. Of course I couldn’t carry it to work with me but I sent Mr J and P out – oops I mean Mr J and P kindly volunteered - to swipe it this evening and here it is:

Ignore the picture which isn’t my cup of tea but look at the frame – it’s alright isn’t it? Admittedly, it’s a little er plastic but once I get my trusty can of spray paint to it, it will come up a treat.

I also managed to snaffle these 2 little oil paintings. I was drawn to the frames initially, but I’m now rather liking those paintings especially the Paris street scene.

All in all, I’m very pleased with my skip raiding activity - and at least I’ve stopped moaning.

Toodle pip everyone!.xx (Why am I talking like a mad eccentric? No, don’t answer that one).

P.S. I'll be posting my finds on Her Library Adventures and Apron Thrift Girl. Why don't you pop along and see what other bloggers have found in the past week.

Saturday 3 July 2010


Mr J and P loves his rabbits. Not rabbit pie you understand but cute little furry real live ones. When he was young, he had a little brown rabbit that he imaginatively called Little Brown or LB for short. He often regales us with stories of LB, such as the one where LB used to bound up the stairs in the morning and wake a little Mr J and P up by jumping up on the bed and tickling his (Mr J and P’s) face with his (LB’s) whiskers. Er. Yes. Really.

We have a pet rabbit. A very cute black Netherland Dwarf called Dennis (after Dennis the Menace). The problem with Dennis is that he is the grumpiest, most unfriendly rabbit - probably in the entire world. Here is a picture of him.

Don’t be fooled by his loveable exterior. He harrumphs and snorts when you approach. Then when you scoop him up he lunges at you and tries to nip you or rip you to shreds with his evil claws. Little Miss J and P and myself have very little to do with him. However, Mr J and P adores him. I often come down in the morning to find Mr J and P at the kitchen door gazing lovingly at Dennis in the run and pointing at him saying “Aaaaah, look at him”. When Mr J and P picks Dennis up to put him back in his hutch, he always holds him in a way so that he can take one of his paws and waves it at me saying “Look Dennis is saying ‘bye bye’” before bundling him back in the hutch (I have to admit that I duly wave back saying “Bye bye Dennis” - daft or what?).

Anyway, enough of this nonsense. The whole point of this post is to say that as part of Mr J and P’s (forthcoming) birthday prezzie, I have made him a rabbit cushion. Yes. Me. Made it. With my own clumsy hands. Want to see it? (and don’t say that you could do with a good laugh). Here it is.

One side:

T’other side:

OK, you can stop laughing now. Yes, I know its face is a little pointy but I’m hoping Mr J and P won’t notice. I’ve only ever sewed in straight(ish) lines before so this was my first attempt at sewing something remotely curvey (and boy was that difficult).

Oh well, I’ll love you and leave you. Just one more snap of Mr J and P (looking slightly demented if you ask me) with a magnificent lettuce from our allotment.

Bet Dennis would like to get his teeth round that little beauty (the lettuce I mean and not Mr J and P. Mind you..........).

P.S. If I'm feeling brave, I may try and post my work of art on Kirsty's blog here. Why don't you pop along and see what real crafters have been up to this week.