During the summer I’ve had the pleasure of volunteering with a brilliant bunch of Cambridge United fans. Together we’ve painted and prepped all corners of The Abbey Stadium ready for the new season. On Day 44 of #100DaysNoTV I took our boys to the ground on the eve of the 2018/19 season to see the fruits of our labour of love. The Abbey was looking at its beautiful best.
Spring is always a busy time for our household with all four birthdays falling in a seven-week period, starting with mine in April. This year we also had a wonderful family wedding in May, so it really has been a time of non-stop celebrations! 🙂
Also with an April birthday, twelve days before mine, is my Mum. When I was invited to enjoy a meal at Bill’s restaurant in Cambridge, it was the perfect opportunity to take my foot off the pedal for a while and enjoy a joint birthday lunch.
The Ivy. Those two words conjure up images of the rich & famous, of opulence, glamour, a place to see and be seen. In 2017, The Ivy in Covent Garden celebrated its centenary; having begun life in 1917 as a modest café, it quickly gained in popularity becoming an iconic London destination, known the world over.
My home city of Cambridge is now home to The Ivy Brasserie; it’s one of the newest restaurants to join The Ivy Collection. Opening day was Wednesday 14th March 2018, and I was invited to join a Bloggers’ Breakfast that morning. Would The Ivy live up to its reputation?
Pint Shop, in the very heart of Cambridge, will soon be celebrating its 4th birthday. Feeling that it would benefit from some sprucing up, the owners not only refreshed the paintwork, but also altered the layout to create two new dining rooms. To celebrate their revamp and new seasonal menu, they held a press & bloggers tasting lunch.
Unable to attend on the day, we were invited to dine on another occasion, and having never experienced their food (but hearing wonderful things about it), we were delighted to accept.
I have vivid memories of being a young girl growing up in the affluent city of Cambridge, not being able to understand why there were so many people sleeping rough, barely surviving. It didn’t seem right or fair, and that helpless feeling stays with me today. That childhood memory, and what I’ve subsequently learned about the plight of the homeless and the disadvantaged, along with an inherent aversion to food waste, compelled me to attend my first FoodCycle session in 2012.
After a break from volunteering while our children were very young, I rejoined the team in September 2017 for Day 35 of #100DaysNoTV.
Cambridge Station was built in 1845, when it was located about a mile away from the city centre. Over the next century and a half Cambridge grew massively, until the station and city became one. Over the last few years, the station and its immediate surroundings have been transformed: CB1 is home to new apartments, office blocks, shops, hotels and eateries.
Only in the last few months has the area that greets visitors when they leave the station begun to take real shape. There are some unfinished sections, in particular the taxi rank, but the new businesses are pretty much fully functioning.
I’m not a serious runner but over the last year or so I’ve become more committed, taking part in the Cambridge Race for Life 10k and the Grand East Anglia Run 10k. My Strava app records every run I do, and last November I joined Run Mummy Run (RMR): an online community of mummies who like to run and support others. This group organised last December’s Advent Streak. 🙂 On Day 26 of #100DaysNoTV I ran in my first team event with some RMR girls.
The Cambridge Wineathlon was a not-at-all-serious 10k run through the pretty villages of Foxton, Fowlmere and Newton. I signed up with a couple of RMR girls and our group grew from there. Where’s Wally? is a staple uniform at some local parkruns, so it was the natural choice for the Wineathlon too! Don’t we look good?! 😉
If you’ve been following my #100DaysNoTV project, you’ll know that I like to try new things and have new experiences. And, I can be pretty flexible about when I have my next ‘Day’. So, I have ultimate respect for my blogger friend, Maria Wylie. As of today she’s managed to try something new for 258 consecutive days. Yes, something new every single day!
Maria also challenges friends to complete a week of new things: a monthly Challenge Week. She offers a theme or two to make it easier to think of something cool to do. I took part in the August challenge: Eco-friendliness & Creativity. On Day 25 of #100DaysNoTV I completed a week of new things!
It’s rare that you get a chance to browse in shops after hours so it was a real treat to spend an evening at Lilac Rose in Cambridge. It was a chance to reacquaint myself with their shop on Bridge Street: one of the prettiest areas of Cambridge city centre.
Lilac Rose have been in Cambridge since 2010 and describe themselves as “. . . an independent fashion boutique selling women’s clothes, jewellery and accessories.” After a quick browse it’s clear that their handpicked dresses have a real emphasis on colour and print (they definitely don’t do plain!) and what might not be obvious at first, is the importance they put on the way the dress fits and feels; I’d say they have their priorities right!
I have an iPhone. I have an Instagram account. I don’t have a lot of knowledge about using my iPhone to take amazing photographs, other than the basic techniques. Or rather, I didn’t, because I recently attended an iPhoneography Workshop with Instagram queen, Sara Tasker.
Organised by Shutter Hub as part of their OPEN 2016, Sara – of Me & Orla – travelled down from Yorkshire to NOVI in Cambridge to teach us some of the tricks that would help us to take better photos using just our smartphones.