I have a list on my iPhone notes of places I want to visit in the U.K. and in recent years I’ve been trying to tick off as many as I can and see more of this beautiful country.
Stay-cations are the best; no hassle of airports, stress of flying (fellow nervous flyers will appreciate!), exchange rates etc. Just do a quick booking.com search, pack, jump in the car and head off for the weekend. We are spoilt for choice here in the U.K. as there’s so much to see but this time we went to The Cotswolds, which has been on my iPhone notes for years.
We rented a small apartment in Cheltenham and spent 3 days driving from village to village, exploring each one and discovering their different character and charm that they have to offer, stopping occasionally for a spot of tea & scones – oh so British!
To add to the typical British theme, it rained on and off all weekend, but instead of crying into our cups of tea, we just put up our brollies and continued to explore Cotswold’s merry olde towns.
As a history buff it was incredible to walk around the unspoilt, old, chocolate box villages where families still run the local bakeries, the olde post office is still in use and the village church and town hall host events for the local community.
The villages have a timeless quality to them, so if you ignore the smart phones and the swarm of people talking pictures with their selfie sticks, you can almost imagine what it would have been like in the good old days of letter-writing and assembly room dancing. It’s no wonder that countless movies and period-dramas have been filmed in The Cotswolds; War Horse (Castle Combe), Bridget Jones (Snowshill), Harry Potter (Gloucester Cathedral & Lacock) and the BBC adaptation of Pride & Prejudice (Meryton is filmed in Lacock).
We drove through countless villages but if you are thinking of going, I’d recommend not missing Bibury, Lacock, Lower Slaughter, Castle Combe and Stow-on-the-Wold. I’m already day-dreaming of my next visit there, staying in an old inn or cottage that has a four poster bed and spending my weekend roaming the villages.
Hello, my name is Ashumi and I am a candle addict. As I work from home and spend many Sunday evenings in, (and Fridays too – loserville, I know!) I like to try and make my space as homey and happy as possible. Something so simple like a scented candle can instantly put me in a better mood, so I like to keep a few candles dotted around the house.
It’s easy to assume that candles are only good for autumn/winter time, when it’s cold outside but as I am an all-year-round candle lighter, I have compiled my 3 favourite summer candles which are light, fresh but also extremely fragrant.
Anthropologie – Spring’s Eden Pomegranate Peony
It’s physically impossible for me to enter Anthropolgie and come out empty-handed. Why is this shop just so amazing? Every time I visit, I always have a peek at the candles but have never actually picked one up. However, a couple of weeks ago I happened to fall into the Regent Street branch and saw some candles on sale…enough said!
This pomegranate peony candle was half price and judging by the size of this thing, I definitely would call this a bargain! It has a light, floral scent and comes with a lovely jar, which I will be using afterwards.
Muji – Seabreeze
I fell in love with this candle as soon as I smelt it in the shop and I would recommend it, if you want an affordable, non-fancy candle that will instantly transform you to summer days spent at the seaside.
Jo Malone – Lime Basil & Mandarin
A more pricey, luxury one that I would recommend to fellow serious candle lovers. This one is a Jo Malone classic and has a fresh, citrusy aroma which I think is a perfect, ‘just cleaned the house’ smell.
What are the two best things about summer? Ice-cream and cocktails…. and the weather, al fresco dinners, summer wardrobes and generally being in a better mood, but we’re just concentrating on the two for this post! Well, not really ice-cream, sorbet but hey go with it!
I’ve been seeing a slight frosé (frozen rosé) craze circulating the Internet this summer, but because I’m more of a prosecco fan, I decided to adapt the frosé and make my own version. I call it a peach sorbet & prosecco cocktail…doesn’t quite have the same ring to it, does it? It isn’t much of a recipe, as it’s pretty simple, so don’t call me a mixologist just yet, but it’s a lovely drink that you can serve up easily for a BBQ or any get together this summer.
First the sorbet…
4 ripe peaches
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
- Peel the peaches, cut in small cubes and freeze overnight.
- Stir sugar in ½ cup of water, and blend with the frozen peaches and a few ice cubes.
- Add the salt and lemon and blitz until smooth.
- Transfer to a loaf pan and freeze (either for a couple of hours or overnight)
Mint leaves or rosemary for garnish
- Add an ice-cream scoop full of the sorbet to each glass
- Pour in a capful of elderflower cordial and top it up with prosecco
- Serve up with a sprig mint or rosemary to garnish and voila!