Friday, 12 July 2013

52 Weeks of Happy...39/52



Thank you for your comments on the honeycups post  - I loved reading them so much! The butter trick - where you hold a buttercup - sorry, honeycup - under someones chin (while looking for the yellow reflection to see if they like butter or not) - I thought everyone did that. I'd love to know if you did too. And it was fun learning about all the different words for things that have crept in to each family's history. I really enjoy stories like that. For ages both my two called sneezes "bless yous" as in "Mummy, I've blessyou-ed, I need a tissue." and I was a little sad when they realised that everyone else called them sneezes.

It's been a hot week, and there have been tired, unreasonable children and tired, unreasonable adults too, but it's not all bad. The weather has been wonderful (if you like 30°C - I do) and we've fallen into a warm weather routine where we pretend we live in the Mediterranean. We close all the curtains upstairs during the day, to keep out the sun, and stay indoors between 12 and 3 as it's just too hot to be in the garden. We collect Bella from school then spend the rest of the afternoon and evening outside, or inside with all the doors wide open. The kids wear their swim suits from 3.30 till bathtime and we've eaten outdoors every day this week. It's easy and light and free. So, joining in with the lovely Jen at little birdiehere are my happy moments from the last week:

1. Every afternoon this week, after their tea, the kids retreat to the playhouse in the garden. They take a pile of books, paper and felt pens in with them and just amuse themselves, quiet and busy and content, until I drag them inside at bedtime. The playhouse makeover is not finished yet - I still need to mend the cracked windowpanes among other things - but already they are using that little space again in a way that makes me so happy.

2. A brand spanking new Marimekko make-up bag in one of my favourite prints, found in a local charity shop for a mere 50p.

3. When I was in my early twenties I worked in a bookshop in the centre of Leeds. The air conditioning never seemed to work and on warm days the ground floor, where I worked, would be stiflingly hot. I would go out on my lunch hour and buy an iced latte from the Starbucks on the corner and wander around the shops sipping my drink and cooling down until it was time to go back to work. It was the best job I ever had, not least because of the lunch hour shopping opportunities that were available to me. I recreated the coffee and have been drinking it all week: espresso, cold milk and lots of ice. Cooling and delicious.

4. Our first strawberry, almost ready to harvest from our very own tiny strawberry patch.



38 comments:

A little bit Country said...

I love these posts Gillian. Can't wait for strawberries to be in season again. We don't have Starbucks here (criminal I know) the nearest one is 2.5 hours away! When I was working in London I used to grab a coffee on the way to work every morning. And I miss the Red Cups at Christmas too. Egg nogg latte....mmmmm xo

Susan Smith said...

I start to melt at 30 deg too and we also close our house up on the really hot days, though I suppose we are a little more used to it than you.
The pics are lovely and summery. Yum, strawberries, which I try to grow, but I seem to feed most of the wildlife around here. Have a lovely weekend.

Julia said...

I always look forward to your "52 Weeks of Happy" posts! Bella looks very content in her playhouse. She is an adorable little girl! I usually make a trip to Starbucks once a week for a mocha frappuccino... my favorite! Your iced latte looks delicious. I don't know why I never think of making one for myself at home. And yes, the strawberries are almost ready... they look great! Enjoy your weekend!

Xelenacrochets said...

It's great that the playhouse is used already. I wish I had one when I was a child. I somehow associate playhouses with Lady Bird children's books.

Thomasina Tittlemouse said...

Lovely summery happies, Gillian! So glad your efforts in the heat to spruce up the playhouse have borne happy fruit in making it used and enjoyed. I think I'd rather like to join Bella in a bit of colouring in there myself! Love that birdy tin - is the covering paper? And if so, may I ask where you got it? Enjoy what looks set to be a gorgeous hot weekend! E x

Just a little less said...

Can you believe this weather??? Love Marimekko, Gillian - what a find, so bright and cheery. And today iced coffee seems very appealing... Have a lovely weekend. Claire xo

Anna-Marie Field said...

Hi Gillian,Such lovely simple pleasures that create happiness!!!It's so funny to hear how hot is over there now!!!Here in mid winter our daytime temps are around 26degrC!!!To us that is mild and I must admit extremely comfortable!!!Our summer temps on average is about 40degrC!!!We have large wrap-around verandas to keep the sun out and there is never a closed window or door!!!There's lots of iced drinks and plenty of salads!!!Enjoy your summer because unfortunately for you it's all the way downhill to winter and for us to summer!!!Sorry didn't mean to bring you down!!!I am so not looking forward to summer!Love these mild winter days!!!Keep cool and have a wonderful weekend!!!
Love
AMarie

Amelie Pou said...

I love your happy posts!! Retiring to the playhouse with a pile of books is just what my boy would do if we had one, I'd never see him!

joy said...

Haha, when my boys were young and someone sneezed, they would say "splashyou"
Joy xx

TACIStudio said...

Such cute colors and what lovely reasons to share such a wonderful week. Thanks for your sweet comments on my blog. Have a womderful week. :)

Jo said...

Our routines have morphed into much like yours. Mind that strawberry if the birds got it that would be terrible. Your week looks a happy one. Jo x

SaraJ said...

We still test who likes butter- and we are all far too grown up! It's just one of those things that has to be done in early summer.
We are in Spsin at the moment - although I think it's hotter in the UK. We adopt a different way of life in the heat too. Supper often at 10pm and always eaten outside. In fact all meals eaten outside. Wonderful. (Oh - and plenty of crochet outside too!!) :) I bet the warm weather will have disappeared by the time we get home.
x

my little red suitcase said...

oh I think I've said it before i want to come and live in your house!! and drink iced coffees with you! I could just quietly live in the playhouse and do happy things! Heather x

Amanda Graham said...

Oh the play house seems a great place to be. Lots of nice summery happies:)

Coal Valley View said...

Lovely happies Gillian! I found a laptop case with a Florence Broadhurst design for about $1 from the Oppy and I still can't believe my luck. I haven't heard of the Buttercup trick in these parts but we used to put yellow dandelions under our chins as kids and if your skin looked yellow it meant you wet the bed! Hope your sunny skies continue over the weekend. Mel x

Chrissie said...

True 'Tales from a Happy House'!!! My littlest girl watched her big sis do the buttercup trick on me, "Does mummy like butter?" Then little sis picked a buttercup, held it under my chin, and said, "Does mummy like chicken pie?" Hmmm...Chrissie x

Plain Jane said...

It's funny how the increase in temperature can change your routines. Ours has slowed down to almost a stop (housework - what housework - there's a garden to sit in!) and we are so enjoying the late evenings outdoors. We always used to do the 'do you like butter' thing but there was also one with dandelions - if you had a yellow reflection there it 'proved' you wet the bed! Not too sure of the science behind this but it gave us hours of fun! Lovely post x Jane

Louise said...

I used to love summer days in the garden with the children playing together without any need for our intervention. The 'ball tuggy game' was a firm favourite that they invented and the playmobile and lego lived in the shed! Nowadays I can relax in peace and quiet but I miss those days too :-)

the linen cloud said...

Oh Gillian ... I love your makeup bag find ... you were very lucky and an iced coffee sounds just perfect ... your week sounds a lot like ours here ... fingers crossed the weather stays ... hope you have a lovely weekend ... Bee xx

Penny said...

Woohoo to 50p for your Marimekko makeup bag. Yay I do love a bargain like this Gillian. Wonderful about your babies using their new play house, Alice would have loved to have one but unfortunately we don't have a proper garden and never got round to buying one for her.
We are off to lie on the beach and soak up our pretend Med rays too today, I hope you continue to have good fun in this weather and cooling off with those iced coffee's. When I travelled to Israel and stayed on various Kibbutz's in the early 1990's I worked in one of the restaurants on the sea of Galilea where I learnt to love this drink made in the same way, perfect lift for a hot day xox Penny

Cheryl mylittlepieceofengland said...

Oh I still do that with my daughter, the buttercup under the chin. Glad you're enjoying the weather, have a wonderful weekend :) xx

Hannapat said...

Wonderful happy moments Gillian. This weather certainly makes for a completely different lifestyle and we too have been living outside rather than in. I have to agree that our kids also seem more delicate than usual. It's so lovely that the kids enjoy their little outside playhouse, I have so many fond memories playing in mine as a little girl. Carry on making the most of this weather and thanks for sharing your happies with us, I love these posts xoxo

Jo said...

I'm loving this weather, it will be even better if it lasts while we're on holiday, we go next week. The taste of the first home grown strawberry of the year is always much anticipated, I hope it turns red for you soon.

Jen Walshaw said...

We did the buttercut thing too. I have been loving the weather. we were at the beach ti9ll 9pm last night. Just perfect

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

That cool coffee just looks so ... cool! No ice here, my freezer just gave up the ghost :(

Sopa Azul said...

Here the weather is very hot too. I would take one of those cafes right now ... Hugs

Vintage Sheet Addict said...

Strawberries fresh from the plant, delicious! :) x

millefeuilles said...

My favourite job was in a bookshop too many, many moons ago! :-)

It gets hot where we live but this week has been totally blissful thanks to a gentle breeze each and every day.

I love the way life takes place outside for the children (and the adults too, of course) in summer. Oh and yes; I used to do the buttercup trick too as a child!

Stephanie

PinkCatJo said...

How perfect! This weather is certainly something to make the most of!
I love the pen pot - very cute. Also, where did you get your stripy straws. They're very cool! x

forgetmenots blue said...

Lots of reasons to be happy. Going to try the iced coffee later. Hope that you and yours have a lovely weekend. Enjoy your strawberries x

love those cupcakes said...

Oh, that coffee looks very tempting. Hope that strawberry will be cut into quarters!

jen said...

Where the heck did you get that Marimekko bag? Amazing find. Love your summery happy things this week. And I laughed when you mentioned the air conditioning in a certain bookshop, it brought back a few 'hot' memories from when I worked there too! x

Lisa said...

Bargain of the week prize goes to you for certain!
It sounds as those the children are loving the new look playhouse and are enjoying being outdoors.
Iced coffee is not really something I have ever tried too much, although looking at your photo I could be tempted.
Lisa x

trishie said...

Love all your happy things! So exciting you have strawberries growing in your garden.

Gillian said...

Hello - it's an old SMA formula milk tin covered with wrapping paper. I think it was from Waterstone's but it was four years ago so not sure if they still stock it. x

Gillian said...

Hello Jo! They are left over from a load I bought last year for a jubilee party. I think they were from ebay - just type "paper straws" into the search header and there are loads of different colours and sellers. x

Gillian said...

The St Gemma's Hospice shop in Horsforth!

LinenandRoses said...

I've just had to go straight into the kitchen and make myself an iced coffee. I'm sipping it as I type this and it's delicious. So long since I had one. Thanks for the inspiration. It's quite likely that we were working in the centre of Leeds at the same time as I also worked there in my early twenties.(I'm guessing we may be a similar age but I could be wrong!) I worked at Multiyork furniture which had a showroom within a department store on the Headrow(Lewes I think it was called). Loved working there. I was at Uni in Leeds then went back to study at home in Hull for two years before coming back to work in Leeds for a little while. Still love it up there. Quite a bit of my family live in Leeds. I so miss the north! Fiona x