Sunday 31 August 2014

Summer update

Hello! It's been a while, hasn't it?

I've been trying to write about why I took a break from blogging this summer, but really, what does it matter? The sun has been out, friends have been wonderful, adventures have been had, and taking the time to blog just wasn't a priority. But I miss writing here! So, here's an attempt to get back into a bit of a routine, with a big summer update.

1. Somehow Scotland seems to have lucked out, and has actually had proper summer weather this year. Scottish behaviour dictates that you MUST go outside at any hint of sunshine... even if terrifying clouds like this are approaching!

2. My best girl was working in Scotland on a film, which meant we were able to sneak in some quality pal time while she was up. If London and Edinburgh could be a little bit closer, that would be great.

3. A lovely wee florist set up a stall at Stockbridge market, and I couldn't resist treating myself to this £3 bargain (which lasted for weeks!).

4. The Science Festival had a summer party sports day, which basically was a big excuse to dress up (in headbands and bunches, obv), wear neon war paint, and drink gin in a field.

5. I was such a wimp about doing organised sport though, so I whinged about it loads in the run up, and then ended up having a super fun time (I'm aware that I'm a total nightmare). I was then given a rosette, which really just encouraged my bad behaviour, but I do like it a lot!

6. Josh & his flatmates organised a barbecue, and the very best bit was this beautiful ice flower bowl that Lucy made. It was heaped with fresh summer fruits and just was the most stunning thing!

7. Google #City Experts held another party, this time in the beautiful Signet Library. It was set up as an indoor picnic, so it had amazing picnic baskets, giant garden gnomes, and flowers hanging from the ceiling.

8. I live next to a massive park, and it's been lovely to spend so much of this summer reading outside. The Island is a book I picked up from a tiny lifeboat shop on the Isle of Mull, when we went adventuring across Scotland earlier this summer. It's by the author who wrote Jaws, and it's pretty creepy.

9. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I am 28, and shouldn't really paint fruit on my nails. But then I did it anyway, because it's summer!

10. Have you heard of Lucky Dip Club yet? It's a seriously cute service that sends surprise personalised packages to you each month. These days the only post I ever get is bills (or spam), so fox badges (and other super cute surprises) are very welcome!

11. I didn't ever get round to sorting out curtains for my flat, and have now totally embraced curtain-free living. I actually think I sleep so much better now... I wake up with natural light and birds singing, and absolutely love being able to look at the stars while I lie in bed. The new (slightly ridiculous) addition to my room is my massive flowers, which I helped myself to (with vague permission) from Google's picnic party.

12. And then it was August! The world's biggest arts festival rolled into town, and life got even busier...

13. One of my favourite fringe things to do is Late n Live - the Gilded Balloon show that starts at 1am, runs until 5am, and is always ridiculous and hilarious (and knackering!). You can't make any plans for the following day, but it's so worth it!

14. Hot Dub Time Machine is turning into a fringe favourite too! It's a dance party that takes you through the decades, and it's so much fun. The day after going to Hot Dub was slightly less fun though... I'd been dancing until 4am, and then had to get up to go to a lunchtime gin event the next day (urggghhh).

15. The very wonderful Book Festival ran this month too, which gave me loads of excuses to hang out in the beautiful Charlotte Square gardens.

16. Ladybird Likes is a designer who makes nice things for nice people. She was looking for phrases to put on her new range of banner necklaces & picked my idea, so I got one as a gift, and I love it! They'll be on sale in her shop soon, alongside all her other ace wooden accessories and jewellery.

17. Sometimes work can be stressful (deadlines are never fun, are they?), but sometimes we play with GIANT BUBBLES. How cool is this? It turns out the secret to making amazing giant bubbles is actually a bit mucky. Who knew.

18. One of the best things about August is that everyone comes out to play, and there's so many chances to hang out with wonderful people. Here are some of those wonderpals.

19. Taking a break from fringe fun... it was my friend Emma's birthday, so Joshua and I baked her this epic summer fruits cake. We then couldn't fit it in a cake carrier, so had to go on a slightly perilous cake adventure, but it all arrived to the birthday girl in one piece!

20. I chopped my hair! I'll blog about this in a bit more detail, because this hair cut feels a bit more rebellious than normal for me, but basically, I got an undercut and I bloody love it. I think everyone should shave their head now. It feels so good!

21. Thanks to tactical team ticket buying, I managed to get a ticket to THE book fest event of the summer - George R. R. Martin talking about Game of Thrones! It was really, really great. He chatted loads about what inspired the books (Scotland is definitely up there!), about how he writes female characters so well (basically not being an idiotic sexist writer, but realising that female characters are actually human), and fan theories, and how they affect his writing now. It was so interesting!

22. At the end of August, we went to Doune the Rabbit Hole, a lovely wee festival near Stirling. Obviously, that meant I had to wear flowers in my hair...

23. ... and explore this beautiful countryside. As well as all of the music and activities the festival offered, Josh & I went off adventuring a few times. We clambered over hills, discovered loads of tree swings, paddled in streams (with tiny fish that nibbled our feet), and on our last morning, got up for a swim in the FREEZING river. It was such a nice way to end a manic month.

24. AND when we were there, I had a go at fire hooping! This time last year I couldn't keep up a hula hoop for more than ten seconds, so hooping with actually flames (that made terrifying swooshing noises, and were seriously hot) was so scary/exciting!

So that's my summer. There were many days where things were a bit lazier (and less interesting to photograph), but all of the moments - busy, calm, sunny, or drizzley - were exactly how I wanted to spend my time. I feel like I was able to take this summer on my own terms, which I didn't have last year, and that makes me all sorts of content.

I hope you all had good summers too. I'll be back. x