Friday, 31 December 2010

what a year....

a very cropped picture from a darling friend

...the year I got married

...the year I promised myself I will get better

...the year I started many beautiful, wonderful friendships which I hope will continue into forever (please know who you are and that I will always be there for you)

...the year I revealed myself to "the world"*

Thank you so very much for being so incredibly kind to a "plump", unhappy, nervous girl,

Annabel at Love My Dress

Kat at Rock n Roll Bride

and Emma Case

(you know how much I love you, right?)

...the year I decided 2011 will be my year.

2010 was good but 2011 will be better.

and thank you, thank you all from the bottom of my heart, for being so supportive and just well, always here for me. 

(I do hope I have offered you something in return, I really want to be that person)

*well my face and just to the little wedding world but it was still a huge thing for me.

Friday, 24 December 2010

did i love my dress?

A little Christmas Eve treat for you all!

The delicious Annabel of Love My Dress has written about our wedding!

What do you think?

Do you love my dress? (You don't have to love it. I just love saying, love my dress!)

(Do not fret there are more words from me to come. I just need to get a little perspective!)

Thursday, 9 December 2010


Well ladies (and sneaky odd* gentleman!)

Wow, you guys. Your sweetness has made me rather teary!

Emma is rather good and Bean does look rather dashing!!

I wish I could attempt a little eloquence but eeekables are getting in the way.

So thank you and a promise to maybe show you more photographs?  Is that ok?

*Odd in the good way!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

a teeny tiny sneaky peek

There are a couple of caveats and provisos

1. Be nice?! (although I wouldn't expect anything else from you lovelies!)

2. Remember Bean and I are still attempting to remain anonymous so please try to refrain from naming him on the blog. (Although our anonymity is slowly decreasing!)

3. Be honest I don't want all happy happy comments - I think that would undermine my whole perfection is boring mantra! (in private if you would like).

4. Please understand I'm not hot and my delicious photographer Emma really is a genius (so it's not her fault that I'm a bit rubbish looking. Bean however, looks da bomb!)

So ok, here goes.

Can you tell I'm a little nervous...?

Fly my pretties, let me know what you think (I know it shouldn't matter but you know)...and do say hello to Emma too for she makes me very happy...

what does a wedding mean to you?

I start with the beautifully insightful Peacock Feathers. Her words inspire me to be a better person. I am so glad she has been in my life (albeit mostly remotely) for my whole planning process. 

And so I leave the floor the the wonderful lady herself.

Years ago, back when my husband and I were at university, we were in the surfing club. One day when were on the beach, debating whether to go into the water in a high wind, we were approached by a camera crew and asked if we would give our thoughts on marriage. They were filming a programme on young people's thoughts on weddings and marriage. Tongue tied in front of a boy I dearly loved but dare not admit, I let him speak first. "A massive excuse for a massive party" he responded, or something very similar "a celebration with our best people". We all laughed. I can see us now, in our wetsuits, dishevelled in the high winds, signing the release form for our thoughts to be broadcast to the nation.
That night, in a grotty room in a surfers boarding house, he told me he loved me. Six years later, on another surfing trip to Cornwall, this time just the two of us, he proposed. Once again, in a bikini and salty clothes, hair dishevelled from a morning in the water, we discussed what a wedding meant to each of us. We were still in agreement that whatever form the wedding took the party was to be a proper celebration - our best people, good food, good wine, good music. And it was.
We didn't have a reserve list. People were either invited or they weren't. There were no waiting staff or hired help (save the caterer and the photographer). If one of the guests wanted a drink, they went to the 'bar' to help themselves. Unless you were a Granny, of course, then there was a team of willing friends to get you one. People didn't faint when it became obvious that they would have to stack their plates up and help each other to trays of tea and coffee. Speeches were given, heckles shouted. Music flowed, people danced like they were at a night club whilst others sat and chatted. There was no segregation of old or young, male or female, school friends and newer friends. As Husband and I started our 'first dance' the dance floor was lined with a circle of support, everyone mingled in together. It was wonderful. And that is what our wedding meant to me - the support and genuine celebration of our love and marriage. In the service, the shout of "we do" that accompanied the vicar's question of "who supports this couple" gave me extra confidence when making my vows.
In a wider context, a wedding means the same thing, only I am the one supporting and celebrating. Be it an old friend, a new friend or a blog friend, we are the layers which surround that couple and give them the confidence to celebrate their love and commitment. Who will provide support no matter how hard things get or how easy the road. Be us personal friends who can provide physical help or online friends who can listen in writing.
And so, on this dark November week, which may well bring snow and wintery difficulties, I wish Anna and her Bean all the best for their day, and their celebrations, and look forward to continuing to form part of the support which surrounds them. Because, for me, that is what a wedding means.

Monday, 6 December 2010

what to say...



...the wedding...hmm.

I wanted to write a post about how I felt the days after the wedding. Yet, the focus on those days was not of joy but of disappointment. (I still want to write about the sadness but not just yet.) Don't get me wrong I am in love with Bean so very very much. (Just not the wedding day, yet.)

So whilst I collect my thoughts I shall leave the floor open to the wonderful ladies (and the occasional dashing gentleman).

Enjoy lovelies.

Friday, 3 December 2010

what does a wedding mean to you?

I write this post as an unmarried woman.*

I want to write this without the clouding of the issue with "my day." I do hope to reassess my views after the wedding to see if things change.

I write this as determined anna, the anna you see below.

So, at last it is almost my turn to become a wife. I can't yet say whether it has been an easy or difficult ride. 

So what does a wedding mean to me?

I think I understand what marriage means. Well I think I know what it will mean for Bean and me. However that is for another day.

Time has marched on with me trying to get to grips with the whole concept of a wedding.

I have had issues with the idea of the hoopla. The overindulgence, the selfishness and the general point of a wedding (apart from the getting married part)?

Is it for the Bean and me, is it for our parents, is it for generations to come? I just don't know. I know right now that I am not really looking forward to my wedding. Body issues, self confidence issue and money issues do somewhat put a a dampener on festivities.

The wedding is happening. Maybe I shall never know what a wedding means. Maybe I shall learn over the next few days.  Wish me luck.

I am lucky enough to have had the support of so many of you over the past eighteen months and even luckier that some of your will be offering their thoughts of the next few days about, "What a wedding means."

So enjoy yourself this weekend. Think of me at 2pm GMT getting ready to say "i do" to the only man I want to ever love. Don your gladrags and raise a glass of tea or champers to me and my Bean.

(Yes I am very nervous!)

*I wish I could have posted this as an unmarried woman. Stupid lack of internet, laptop and general uber chaos!

Friday, 12 November 2010

have i used up all my luck?

Totes want to win these delicious Kate Spade bad boys on one of my favourite blogs HipHipGinGin

Stupid tiny picture but you get the idea!

I stupidly forgot to pop to the London pop-up shop! The perfect wedding present? I do love a good nipple!

Stupid anna x

would you like to know a secret?

So you may have gathered I am getting married soon. I think I've mentioned it once or twice?!

Thing have gone wrong but anna is positive now. Well positive she will get married very soon!

I hope you are all crying, "When, when, when?!" I know I always want to know more details about you lovelies.

Well, I think it's time you knew! November is really not just specific enough. The day is approaching and my, oh, my I am nervous.  I have been worried that revealing our date would invite mischief and perhaps malice however things have hardly run smoothly thus far so I am embracing the chaos.

So here it is, I will becoming Mrs annaandthering Bean on the 27th November. 10 years to the day we officially started dating. Admittedly we became "acquainted" slightly earlier than that.

Oh me, oh my, that's but 15 days away. I shall be around for a little longer but you may be lucky enough to see some lovely thoughtful guest posts in the very near future.

I only hope I have a wonderful day like my Great Auntie. (I am love with the new photographs my mother recently found for me.)

My radiant great Auntie Valerie* on her wedding day. How I miss her giggles, her amazing chips and sneaky KitKats with coffee.** (I sadly never got to meet my great Uncle.)

*Oh the very clever pseudonym, for she had a very rare name.
**She lived next door to my Mamgu (my Welsh Grandmamma) in the Middle Lands so when staying over holidays I would always sneak across to her.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

we will remember them.

I may find it difficult to wear a red poppy* but that will never stop me supporting and being immensely proud of future and fallen heroes. 

Just like my great Grandmamma, who was sewing for the troops somewhere in this photograph in 1915.

My soon to be older brother was recently out in Afghanistan (and whilst I know with what he does he is technically not in danger, he's not exactly flying to Ibiza). 

Help for Heroes. Wear your poppy with pride. The British Legion

*I have the utmost respect for those who put their lives at risk for my continued freedom. I just find it hard to comprehend war.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

papa will preach...

So thanks to the ever so wise other Bean* I spoke to my grumpy but lovable Father over the weekend whilst the London Bean was away with his man fairies (or on his Stag as it is more commonly known - I love his boys!).

Anyhoo, Father and I spent a couple of days together and avoided talking about anything vaguely wedding related. Finally whilst the Mother was dreaming of drilling** on the sofa I asked my father the fateful question. Here follows the abridged version.

"So, would you like to walk me down the aisle?" I asked cautiously.
"If you want me to I will," he answered in his usual flippant manner"
"Hmm, that's not really what I asked is it?" as I try, but fail, to sound nonchalant.
"Well, I am your father and I guess I should carry out fatherly duties?" exasperated.
"Yes but would you like to do this, would be proud to have me on your arm?" I exasperatedly reply.
"Oh I see, well I guess I would so of course I would be proud, happy and whatever you want me to say."
"Yeah, that's still not the greatest answer but I guess what else can I ask?"

By now the mother's ears had pricked up and felt she should also be part of this duologue.
"You know what she means, she does not want to be embarrassed by you," my mother interjected with her usual interrogatory and inflammatory manner.

"Well I guess I see," Father admits. (One can always rely upon Mother!)
"I just want you to want to do it." I explain.
"Of course I do, you are my only daughter." He cries.
"So how about, maybe, a speech?" I tentatively ask.
"Well I'm on page 65 of my notes so far so I think we're on for 3 hours," he continues characteristically.
"Ha, bloody, ha, please be nice?"
"I will, I promise."

Hugs in my mind all around. Not actual hugs of course. We are still the Uptight Family.

So well, he is hopefully escorting down our "aisle" and there appears to be a speech.

Can I let you know if it goes to plan? I shan't be crossing any fingers. 

Also as I promised, the only picture of my Grandmamma and Grandpa's wedding.

I love that my Grandpa looks like a gangster!
I love that my Grandmamma looks just as sweet!

This is the reason we have photographs taken. Not for our own eyes but for generations to come. Not that I am saying people will care about my wedding (but if we do happen to have grandchildren I hope they will be as excited as I am to see such beautiful and touching moments.)

Ooo, I may also have some other lovely photos to show you over the next few weeks! Eeek!

*Darling London Bean - I do not mean you are not wise but in this case I think we were both too close to the whole Daddy situation.
**Our family euphemism for snoring.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

remember remember it's november, november

I am literally getting married this month.

Huzzah! Crikey! Whoop! Yay!

My heart is beating a little faster. I may have my wedding ring.

So sorry if I talk nothing but weddings for a while (both on here and on twitter)

I promise not to bore you but I am sorry if I talk nothing but weddings for a while (both on here and on twitter)

In return would you be interested in the only photograph of my grandmother and grandfather's wedding?

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

clever girl (but not in the scary JP way)

As if my ovaries weren't already slightly excited.*

I now seriously want a clever little girl like Bean.

I asked this question about my father.

Her advice has got me thinking. I think I should talk to my father before deciding for him. I should at least give him the option of declining or accepting.

What do you think?

Gosh he looked like a bruiser!

*I got to play with my almost 2nd cousin (Bean's cousin's baby)

oh how i wish...

...I could turn back time.

I thought I had found the perfect dress here, oh how I was wrong.

It's not the chicest of dresses. Indeed I adore the fact it is not perfect. Just like me. Also like me it costs a fabulous $450. If only it would fit me. If only I had found it months ago and asked my mother to reproduce the prettiness. But tears are for losers. Maybe it could be your dress? Please? For me?

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

i had no idea...

....I had such a flair for melodrama. (Although Bean may disagree!)

One of my favourite photographs. My cousin, myself and my little brother waiting for the DLR.
Although my brother does seem to be winning in the drama stakes! 
Bless his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle bumbag!

So sorry for my tears. Last night was the worst night I have had in months. I felt so very sick. Nothing seems to be going right.

Our comedy of errors so far-

~ Our darling photographers had to cancel, although we have solved this with a just as fabulous photographer

~ Our venue somewhat burnt down

~ We lost our DJ and some other live entertainment

~ My dress may be rubbish (also included in that is my lack of beautifulness)

and more but I just can't bring myself to think about it.

It just seems anything I don't have actual control of has gone wrong! (Well save the hideousness)

To tell the truth I have been feeling really quite unwell over the past few weeks and have been asked to stand down from my job for a few months.

Depression really is a bitch. Just when you think you are doing well and almost "there" it comes back with a vengeance. In most ways it is nothing to do with the wedding but I dare say wedding stress has not helped. However my blackness runs far deeper. Yet these things take time. The first step for me is to try and be positive. So let me be positive for but a moment.

~ I am marrying a delicious Bean and it will happen by the end of this year

~ We have two adorable kittens living with us

~ I will get better and back to work

~ I had a great hair and make-up trial on friday (I now need to start looking at myself and not get physically repulsed)

~ I had a great time this weekend with my hens

~ We don't need a DJ, our cheese will suffice

I now have remembered that a wedding is not the end of my life yet simply another beginning. 

If the wedding all goes to shit, well fuck it. It's not the bloody end of the world. 

The wedding will not be blog worthy and well maybe that is just fine. 

So sorry for my tears last night. I think I just needed to get them out of my system.
Thank you. One and all. I really do mean it.

Monday, 25 October 2010

tears from anna

I think this may be my last post, maybe forever.

I am quite disenchanted by the whole wedding business just now.

I want to curl up and forget I ever wanted a hoopla.

Not sure if I will be missed but I will miss you.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

cluck cluck

Eeek! I really am getting married.

Tis the weekend of my hen.

So nervous. 

Completely not used to being the centre of attention.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

papa do preach?

So I have discussed my father a couple of times before.

As the wedding draws closer (almost less than a month now - could this be the cause of my constant heartburn?) I find myself becoming increasingly enthralled by tradition or is this just me turning into a reluctant conformist? That is a whole other story.

So this is my father. Sitting with my great Uncle Hugo.* Yes, he looks like a cheeky boy. He still is rather cheeky but with the aforementioned grumpiness.

What is my quandary? Up until this point I am yet to really talk about the wedding with him. I love my father, he's generally a good guy albeit a little irritating on occasion. My family, and I include myself in this, rarely discuss emotions and weddings apparently involve emotions. He does think spending money on a wedding is a complete waste of time. So there be a little friction.

Problems are twofold.

1. Should he walk me down the aisle? Do I need someone to walk me down the aisle? For stability in outrageous heels perhaps? If he cares not for the way in I am to be married should he have the honour?
2. Should he be allowed to orate? I worry for drunkenness (well certainly he shall be boozed up by the time for speeches.) Also I really would rather he thought about a speech rather than just making it up on the spot. I have listened to many a beautiful speech from jubilant fathers and do fear for rather mean grumpy slurred words. On the other hand, it is likely to be funny, albeit at my expense.

I know I should probably have made up my own mind but I really know not what to do. Please do tell me what you think I should do. I simply do not know. I think I know what I should do....but....

P.S. I may also be asking the tiny wedding planner.

*I love my pseudonyms!

Saturday, 16 October 2010

oh happy day

Today is the day the delightful Rebecca of Daydreams in Lace marries her James.

I wish them both health and happiness.

Have the most fantabulous day my lovely.

I cannot wait to hear all about it. The diy reveals will be breathtaking I'm sure.

Love anna xxx

*I spent hours scouring the internet to find the right picture. Imagine a long hot summer in Cumbria and this is how I see Rebecca whiling away the hours. A true daydream in lace.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

hello i am a genius...#1

...or perhaps more accurately "learn from my mistakes."

I most likely fell off this tree stump as soon as this photograph was taken.

This may turn into a daily occurrence for I am not always the cleverest bunny (much to Bean and my family's amusement).

"Ha ha," I thought I as I bought the prettiest of pretty earrings for the wedding. "Ha ha, I am so organised, ha ha, these babies are beautiful but also chic and a little cool."

Ha ha how wrong was I? Now many of you may now think I am uber stupid for this not crossing my mind but anyhoo.

Silly anna* forgot she rarely wears statement earrings (insert your new purchase here) and her ears were not ready for such monsters. Oh the pain, the pain. Thank very goodness I wanted to dance around the flat wearing my new babies otherwise probably would not have bothered until the day. 

So ladies, when you buy your magnificent jewels please remember to wear them to get a feel for them. Your ears, hair, wrists or fingers will offer you praise for your forward thinking

No need to thank me. It's all part of the anna and the ring service.

Would love for you to email me your moments of clarity (whether they be related to weddings or not) to annaandtheringlondon{at}

*Must stop referring to myself in the third person.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

oh no, i think i found my wedding dress

With less than 2 months* to go before our wedding I guess it is not the time to think about dresses other than my own. 

However if I had a spare £9000 to drop on a dress (oh how my eyes are far too big for my purse)....

...the little cap sleeves
...the colour
...the intricately detailed sexy back
...the movement created by the printed fabric
...the unusual square neckline
...the little puddle train (well maybe a little longer on me)

How I love thee.

What do you think? Do you have an uber dream dress other than your own?

*Bean and I did get a little freaked out last night thinking about it.

Monday, 11 October 2010

because it made me happy... about you?

One minute of glee.

au revoir toots et pierre

This weekend was a hard weekend.

It was the weekend we had to say goodbye to our little foster kitten.

I knew it was inevitable she would leave our home but that made it no easier.

For those who had not met her before, here she is again, my first baby.

I know it is ridiculous to call her my baby but in many ways she was. She was the first pet I have looked after as if I were a parent. 

In these short weeks I have learnt so very much.

1. I love cats more than words can say. (Luckily I got to look after my parent's cats this weekend.)
2. Whilst I do like a British Short Hair my heart will always belong to my huge fluffy monsters. (Mongrel Maine Coons rescue cats for the win!)
3. I love being called Mummy.
4. I love calling Bean, Daddy.
5. Calling each other Mummy and Daddy is going to be hard habit to break.
6. I will be the one who gets up at 4am if we do have a baby, Bean says, "that's why you get maternity leave." Oh the joys of him being the most consummate sleeper and bloody rude.
7. After months of wondering I am coming round to the idea of motherhood.

It is crazy what one little kitten can do. Thank you, Toots, we shall miss you so.

Sunday, 10 October 2010

previously on bean and anna

Bean and anna, Dec 2000*

This time 10 years ago one young Bean and one young anna met in their halls at University. They really "met" over a game of spin the bottle. Their little kiss was meant to last but a couple of seconds yet it has lasted for 10 years.

I love you Bean. I love you so very much. I cannot wait to be your wife. I adore you and your kisses.

What does 10.10.10 mean to you?

* Apologies for the tiny photograph I stole it from facebook.

Monday, 4 October 2010

marquee de Sadness

and breathe's not a big deal....but...

(Also I mean no disrespect to those who love a traditional marquee but I really do not.)

So they finally answered our questions about the marquee, to say there would be tears would be lying but I am close. (I know it would be uber pathetic but it's my party...).

So it appears we have no choice in marquee. This be the marquee we will have. It has been present since the fire and is starting to look a little shabby.

See my problem?

1. I love my grey but a grey carpet? A grey carpet which looks like it has seen better days. 

2. I did expect a wooden dance floor, even if it were tiny!

3. Also I would expect tablecloths which graze the floor. Ugly table legs should be neither seen nor heard.

4. Well, certainly no chair covers for us (not a problem!)

5. A rather pathetic excuse for lighting.

6. It generally screams cheap (and checking on the suppliers website, it is!)

However I think I still want to use the marquee. Maybe? Or should I just be satisfied with my lot and cope with everything in here? This is our ceremony cum dining cum dancing room. (Check out the curtains!)

Admittedly, for me, this room is loverly but grumpoles anna wanted the more than one room extravaganza.

Should I just lower my expectations and just get on with it?

Bugger. Why can I not just decide?

We either settle for the somewhat hideous marquee which I fear cannot be made to look awesome (and sort of makes me feel a little queasy) or suck it up and decorate the hell out of the ceremony room after we have said "i do". Yet who do I ask to help decorate? 

I am sure I don't want to do it myself and I don't really want to ask others to do something that could have easily been done the night before by myself and others (as per the original plan) when we are meant to be having fun? Also at this point I do not trust the venue to be particularly helpful with regard to decor.* 

There definitely will be time for a room layout and decor change around as we shall be entertaining our guests with a "champagne" reception. 

Help? What do I do, my gut is being particularly unhelpful. 

Also is not getting what I want ok? It means I cannot possibly strive for perfection and will always know I could have had a better day? For me that's a good thing. (Yes my brain is a little screwed up.)

*Oh yes, bitch anna is coming into play now and yes I realise that was a rather tame statement, you should hear my actual potty mouth, not so pretty even in a British accent!

Friday, 1 October 2010

oh to married

It's my wedding next month!!! Booyah!

I know it's a cliché, but how can it be October already?

Totally time to get my craftiness on, much like my 2 year old self!

Also maybe sort out my hair, it is desperate need of a cut although probably not as I did in the days before this photograph was taken. I believe I sat on the potty with a pair a scissors and went oh so asymmetrical. 

Mother was not happy.

(So want to know about my diy projects?)

Thursday, 30 September 2010

say my name, say my name...*

Whilst we are trying to sort out the venue situation I thought I might discuss the name situation. Tis truly a week of quandaries.

Since I was little I have always loved my name (well not my middle name but that's ok!). I loved that I wasn't just another Jane Doe and had a name people could not pronounce. It made me feel exotic.**

Here I am with but a couple of my Polish relations and my little bro, he be the tiny boy with the white blonde hair!

Like most of your I have had the same name all my life. 

So my name is Anna Biglongpolishname. 

This is further complicated that I am obviously professionally known as Dr Anna Biglongpolishname. A name which I am advised to keep throughout my professional life as I have won prizes and published things under said name. Also I find people think I am super clever with this name. Although I have never actually changed my title in the real world. Far too much hassle and I am not defined by my profession (also slightly worried about the fateful is their a doctor on the plane scenario - of course I would stand up but after waiting a couple of seconds for another!).

So really the title is a red herring issue. I think I will continue to be Dr Anna Biglongpolishname at work whatever happens. Also the GMC are a little weird, I do not want to enrage them.

The next complication is Bean's name. If I take his name I will be Anna Annason (well almost!). Which would be great if I were a crime writer or pop star (maybe one day) but it's not a real person name! I guess I could just suck it up but is it so bad I like my own name?

We are also assuming there may be babies one day and we would like them to have the same name. For me it just makes sense. For me it adds to the sense of family. It enforces the idea that we are a unit, together.

We discussed the idea of choosing another name but Bean no likey and to be honest, how on earth does one choose another name? 

So obviously the last choice*** is to double barrel, well without the hyphen (how gauche!) although I do admit the concept of the double barrel is rather bourgeoisie in itself. However I do rather like the sound of Anna Biglongpolishname Annason. (Also our children will be super intelligent and have no trouble spelling a slightly weird complicated name).**** Only that way works because otherwise I am my father/mother. Yes my father's forename is Bean's surname. 

So I am happy to take Bean's name with mine but should I encourage Bean to take mine? Is it discourteous towards him and his family, a family who I really admire and love with all my heart. Is it emasculating? For some men maybe, but Bean is a pretty wise and modern guy and I hope/almost sure he knows that me not wanting to become Anna Annason is disrespectful but a sign of how much my past is part of me. Something to be celebrated in our future life together rather than dismissed and forgotten for him to assume the role of Patriarch. (Not that I would say I have a foreboding dominating patriarchal influence now but...). That we will now be a partnership and allows us to define a family of our own?

I have tested the water and he does seem happy to take my name too, but I think this is still a work in progress. The next step, if I get my way, is to decide the best way in which to go about this process, ahh red tape.

What are you choosing to do and why?

*Man how I loved Destiny's Child!
**Yes Bean, exotic!
***Actually this probably isn't the last choice, he could take my name but that hardly seems fair either.
****As a complete aside I dreamt I had babies, older one was "normal" and the other was talking and eating normal adult food from day 1. Bean is now worried that rather than a evil mastermind I may incubate some sort of demonic child.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

marquee de Sade?

Thank you, thank you, thank you. 

More explanation I think. If you need to catch up, click here.

1. We have decided to stay at the same venue. 

There are many reasons for this choice

a) We want to get married in Northumberland. Tis beautiful and close for much of Bean's family.
b) We can't afford to get married in London (unless anyone wants to offer a great blogger and amazing London deal!?)
c) We have paid for our venue and sorted so many things for that venue. Indeed our caterers only cater for that venue and their food is beyond delicious.
d) Lovely people have already paid for flights, accommodation and other things.
e) I really don't need the hassle of changing venue. I love what it has to offer. A weekend of everyone together. It's just something quite hard to find (for the right price). Yes I am fussy.
f) Although I have moaned in the past, it really is an great place to get married.

2. So what to do?

There are 3 choices

a) Have dinner at dancing at the other venue they own - it is nice but the whole point of having a wedding and reception on one site was to have a wedding and reception on one site. So that option is out.

b) Have everything happen in one room - yes I know many weddings are self contained in this way but I am the bride* and I want to do something different and it was the plan all along. The room in which everything happens is lovely. Indeed I would not have agreed to marry there otherwise. This I think will be a last resort if c) does not materialise.

c) A marquee. Now I have dealt with my marquee demons previously. I guess I just find a white box overwhelming and underwhelming at the same time. The venue have offered to pay for a marquee. We are currently in the process of trying to find out what this actually means. 

So for the next few days we are thinking marquee (mainly with this in mind - thank you Cat and Catherine). It is a marquee with angles, baby! However, things do not run so smooth in the world of Bean and anna. I like to think I lucked out when we met each other and I have no luck left!

So I am trying to be optimistic. A new and challenging time for me! So pray tell me wise ones. Where does a girl start when she needs to make a blank canvas that little bit better? (I knew I should have bought fairy lights in the sales in January!)

And because I do not want to leave you without a picture here is my foster baby.  She is a naughty little affectionate thing but I do think I love her. Such a beauty, always so poised until she starts to play.

Anyone in the West London area interested? Let me know. She needs access to the outside world!

*I am really trying not to become evil demanding bride - although I fear changes are afoot already. It will be "Magical, I tell you" - Thank you Hannah, and everyone your thoughts are so helpful - as always.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

grace under fire?*

Remember I was a little stressed a few weeks ago?


I know you care really!

Well there has been a little stress, which I am trying to overcome and not be all bridezilla about. However I am failing.

Yes, there has been stress with my venue.

How to put this.....


So part of my venue has burnt down. Although these aren't actually photographs of our venue, they are of a house fire at my parent's house almost 10 years ago. (Now that was a traumatic day). I even joked on our wedding website that it would be good if our venue didn't burn down before November. Stupid anna.

So here's the down low. I realise it is not a disaster but it is certainly not ideal!

1. We have "lost" the main hall where we would have had dinner and dancing - this sucks. The room had beautiful high ceilings, a little stage and was generally almost perfect.
2. We may now have to have dinner and dancing in the ceremony room - yes this is ok, but it means not having the one long table I really want and we may have to have round tables (I really do not like round tables - I blame my childhood or something equally as innocuous!)
3. Have the room for all three "parts" means that the decor may have to stay the same through out and I can't really change the mood as the night progresses. Yeah that does make me sound a little precious!
4. The dancing may have to be less raucous as the space is smaller. Sad face.

There are three possibilities.

1. Have everything in the same room - which is what we have been thinking, no stress but not the wedding I have envisaged. 
2. The owners have a second property which they can bus us too - 30 mins away and not as nice.
3. A marquee - in November in the north of England. (Which they would in part pay for, in theory at least)

Option 1 was my original choice until I saw this super rad post from Savoir Wedding.  I shall admit now I usually hate marquees. Yet this opening my rather narrow eyes. Then Bean confessed, this very eve, that he was thinking this might be the solution but had not mentioned his interest due to my fear and loathing of the aforementioned blank room!

So why do I fear the tent? I guess I have been to one too many bad marquees.  I hate the suffocating feeling, the sweat dripping down the walls, the uneven floors which hurt ankles and generally the heat. Yeah, I have been in some terrible marquees!

So pray tell me clever ones, can a marquee be good in November? Is it a viable option? At least it won't be hot?! I need to talk logistics with the venue. Although I am not impressed by their communication thus far but that's just another issue.

How does one go about creating prettiness from a shell? I am not the most crafty as I found out this past weekend after spending 13 hours on Saturday and a just a little less on Sunday making things.** Although we do still have a fair few ideas.

Are we crazy for even considering a marquee? I want my guests to dance all night long, be comfortable and those who don't want to dance have somewhere else to relax but to be close by. What can we achieve with limited funds but time and enthusiasm?

Help me!!!!

*anna which I think means grace, yeah I am awesomely clever and funny!
** You shall see!

Monday, 27 September 2010

a moment for a mouse

I have the please of guest posting over at the wonderful Souris Mariage whilst she is away, hopefully in a world of bliss and happiness from her recent nuptials.

She has asked many far more wonderful ladies for their views, ideas and thoughts on marriage. Seriously there have been some great posts already.

So...what do I think is the secret for a happy marriage? Do let me know what you think too. Just click here my lovelies!

Saturday, 25 September 2010

"Why so dreamy, little mouse?"

Well, the wonderful and beautiful Mouse is to marry today.

Eeekables indeed!

A mouse who makes me think and happy.

I wish you all the luck and love in the world.

Many loves and many kisses,
anna xxx

Thursday, 23 September 2010


Here is one of reasons I have not been sobbing into my cereal and turning into a crazy bridezilla.

Seriously I think cats should be prescribed on the NHS.

Unfortunately our baby foster cat may be going to her "forever" home, but "we'll always have London.*"

Yes our little baby plays fetch with her favourite piece of string, Peter (as in Mr P Stringfellow). 

Forgive the voice. I don't usually infantilise the kitten.

*Although Paris would have been just as nice, I'm sure.

Monday, 20 September 2010

it's not easy being green?

Henderson Images

Sometimes I love being a blogger as I get to meet and promote really wonderfully creative people.

I am so lucky and happy to live in London and I really do marvel at the fabulousness on offer to brides today.

So when I got the but the chance to highlight some of my favourite eco friendly brands in London I said yes, yes, yes. I am now totally in an international wedding publication (sometimes it's the little (or rather big!) things!).

So here I am at Eco-Beautiful weddings from page 24! Let me know what you think!

P.S. Check me out on page 13! Anonymity rules.

P.P.S. Check out the wonderful Kat and I am Staggered too!

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

by the skin of my teeth

This is going to be a seriously (and I mean seriously) narcissistic and freakin' demanding post but I do need your help, for you are wise and beautiful.

So this be me, I am not entirely sure how old I am here but from the scars on my face (I have always been clumsy as my last post explains), the fact I am wearing earrings and where I am I would guess I am about 11.

The ravages of time have changed a "few" things but we shall be using this for as our canvas!


Brutal honesty time.

I still have the five head (large forehead) although it is somewhat masked by a fringe occasionally. I still have the big eyebrows, thin eyebrows don't really look good on me and I also have an old scar from an altercation between myself, my slippers, a dog and a chair. Unfortunately my eyes are no longer so big and blue. I still have my weird chin and jawline and my neck is not swan like nor delicate! However I would say my lips are still big and juicy. Body - bleurgh.  Boobs are good when supported but otherwise bleurgh.

So I am bowing before the font of your knowledge. I now feel like I am speaking like I am on Crime Watch, but can you help?

Now this is pretty good still although it has lost it's glow over time. I shamefully use no products to maintain a glow so cannot really have expected it to have prospered. However I have normal to oily skin so I find most moisturisers cause my naughty nose to erupt. Are any others of you "sufferers" of oily skin? How do you control yet conquer?

Eyes and brows
I do like my eyes despite being rather small.  Not much to be done but I do suffer from late nights and dark circles. Hmmm. A touch of touche eclat? Although not so good for photographs?

The brows need to stay relatively large, mainly because I usually wear glasses. However I did to perfect their shape. I like a little arch. Do you have a fail safe method for taming your beasts?

I seem to either be suffering from chronic dehydration, chappiness or general old lips.  However whilst they are large they never seem fabulous. I am usually just a lip balm girl (if that). I have literally at least two balms on my person at anyone time. From the cheapest chapstick to the rather more expensive and everything in between. What are your top tips, how about plumpers? Do they actually work?

Brownish, with a curl when left to dry naturally. My hair will be greasy by the end of a day. I do need to wash it once a day. I am slightly scared by the idea of washing it the night before! Do you have clever shampoo and conditioner ideas? Any "miracle" balms or serums for taming those naughty wispy bits?

Lower arms - Currently covered in cat scratches (a more detailed explanation to come soon!). My regenerative powers are working on it!

Upper arms - Two words - Keratosis pilaris. Not so noticeable, for me it mostly colour change - which maybe helped by a slight tan - but if anyone knows a great tip do let us all know!

A little British! Know of any decent whitening toothpaste? I like my gap and she is not budging - despite the old Madonna connotations!

Ahhh, still my inertia stops me. I need to that simple switch the every moving inertia. Tell me your secrets. How do you get your trainers on?

My diet is improving but can always do with tinkering. Indeed just eating less is good (not bad less, just smaller portion size less). What are your clever lifestyle choices?

Blissfully hidden by the dress but anything to tone these bad boys would not be a bad thing.

In conclusion 
(I feel like I have just written my first scientific report in a while!)

I need you my beautiful clever ladies. I'm not looking for an ugly duckling transformation. I'm looking for perfection. Te hee, only kidding, could you imagine after all this time me turning into a perfection maniac? I just need a little buff and polish. Feel free to comment here or drop me an email. I truly need your help. Any nugget will be very much appreciated!

*I say improve, I do want to be myself but the most okay version I can be for life and co-incidentally for the wedding.

Monday, 13 September 2010

anna and the clumsies

So this is a story all about how my life got flipped-turned upside down.

I wish I could show you my impressive injury with my altercation with a door frame. To prove my lack of grace. However I am without the gene for bruising (as is my brother) and no matter how severe the injury I endure I have a Wolverine like ability for regeneration!

So whilst I have suffered with double vision, a rather wonderful larger than an egg bump, a misery inducing headache and the rather to frequent bouts of nausea, I had no obvious bruise. So frustrating!

I hope to re-enter the world of the living this week.  Although I am rather behind with life and stuff. I really should talk about the wedding. Things are getting rather busier and exciting now. Less than 100 days to go! Eeeeek! 

What have I missed? How are you?

Friday, 3 September 2010

I wish I could have cake for breakfast everyday!

Hear's to Miss Cloggins and her very soon to be husband!

I just want to wish her uber uber good wishes (especially with her rad swarovski bejewelled toes!)

A truly wonderful girl (well lady really!) who has offered me such help and wonderfulness since I met her over the interwebs.

So kisses from anna. I hope this weekend is all you want and more. I simply cannot wait to see you, your ravishing pictures and generally gossip about your wedding. Perhaps over cake? Me thinks yes!

Huggles, Ax

Thursday, 26 August 2010

awkward question of the day..

The question pertains to this little lady..... Grandmamma as a teeny tiny baby.

I am rather glad that I have to ask people really very intimate questions everyday as it has somewhat prepared me for this next question.

"Grandmamma, you know you and Darcy* (her toyboy) are now a proper couple. Obviously we want both of you to be there and obviously we want to have you stay with us. So would you like a bedroom with a double bed or one with twin beds?" Cringe. 

Luckily my Grandmamma is a little minx and was quite happy to request a double room.

Cringe averted. Go Grandmamma!

*Yet another cunning pseudonym!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

the truth according to anna

Thank you all for all your words over the past couple of days. I am looking forward to trying my best before and after the wedding but I have something more to say. 

I am going to say what no-one ever says. It has taken me over a year to write this but only now I feel I have discovered what I need to say. 

We are not all beautiful. 

I'm sorry but it is true and is it really a problem?

Whilst it is but my personal opinion I do not see beauty everywhere. Maybe I am shallow but I do not see beauty with every step. I do see beauty in the oddest of places but never really in myself.  People in the blog world ask for validation and I enjoy being able to offer my thoughts. However, unless I feel someone is soliciting my totally honest opinion I often will not say anything. I am of the stock if you have nothing to nice to say, say nothing.

I am not asking for sympathy, I just want to be honest. Indeed a (perhaps) wise friend once did say to me many, many years ago, "there can only be one who is most beautiful" and this reconciled my niggles for sometime but gradually my old insecurities fought back. 

Yet I cannot decide whether my thoughts are a product of my upbringing (as in I was always told I was not attractive by family) or just my honest observations.  Perhaps I just have a blinkered view of what "beautiful" is? Or is it that I am insanely competitive and find it frustrating I shall never be seen as beautiful.

Although you realise I am only talking about physical beauty. I realise that I can be a beautiful person without being beautiful, per say. I know Bean loves me for who and what I am. My woe comes not from a need to impress him or anyone else. I want to be be "happy in myself." A phrase I ask my patients on a daily basis and am still to work out what the real meaning is.

I do worry that I suffer from a reverse type of a body dysmorphic disorder where I can convince myself I look nice. (Particularly in aeroplane loos. Their mirrors and yellow lighting makes me glow!) That is until I see a photograph and see what a monster I look like when standing next to my beautiful friends.

Most of the time I look like this. Dishevelled, bug eyed and excitable. Maybe my aim should not be beauty but to embrace my own uniqueness and actually enjoy myself? Yeah, that does sound like a good idea. I think it's time I banned beautiful from my vocabulary. Uniqueness is what I should strive for.

Unphotogenic 10 year old anna with a timid Pickles and a nearly headless Father

P.S. Hannah you looked so beautiful on your wedding day. I mean it.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

things are getting serious

That is what marriage really means: helping one another to reach the full status of being persons, responsible and autonomous beings who do not run away from life.
Paul Tournier

So what does a wedding mean?

Our wedding will be more than the sum of it parts. In my bumbling way I want to say that I am so grateful so many of you will be part of my wedding. I had no idea when I started rabbiting on about my daily thoughts about the wedding that I would be helped by so many of you. I sit here with tears in my eyes, full of appreciation that you have taken the time to email me, call me and meet me, to become friends. The wedding will be about Bean and me but will also be the personification of the love you have shown me. I will be a married lady in 4 months time and I am freaking out. My tears of happiness are overcome by my tears of worry. Not about the day, the marriage but about me.

The thing is....

I know I ask for so many things from you.  Yet this time I need you so very much.

I am not ashamed to say what I am about to say.
I do not want to look like I do at the moment on my wedding day.

My skin does not glow, my hair is not shiny and most of all I am fat. I hate the word but it is true.  I am trying to eat healthily but get very little exercise.  I hate to say I want a quick fix but I do.  It goes against everything I stand for. It is not how you look but how you feel. Yet at this moment in time all I can think about is how my grandchildren will look at my wedding photographs and think I was rather too round. I hate being the shape I am.

If you are happy with your size then that is fine, it's just I am not. It's not the media, the WIC, it is just me. A problem that extends back into forever.  However I am motivated, willing to learn or try anything. I shall hopefully be joining a slimming club next week but I need more.

Can you help me?

I want to be this very happy girl...albeit without the blonde hair.  

I also want to bring party dresses back!


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