Jenson’s Christmas wish list 2016

jensons christmas wish list 2016

As much as I love writing my birthday/Christmas wish list, I think I like writing Jenson’s more! We’ve already got him sorted for Christmas (plus a couple of family members – I’m so organised!) but there are a few things … Continue reading

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My Christmas list

Last week I shared Jenson’s Christmas list and this week I’m sharing my growing list/Pinterest board. My birthday is two months away and Luke, the lovely boyfriend that he is, has already started shopping, so I’m not being that much of an eager beaver by putting together a Pinterest list of favourites for friends and family. It’s also a handy bookmark for new year sales, as it’s all bound to be reduced! Here are some of the highlights…

christmas list 2015 film geek

For the film geek in me:
My Neighbour Totoro steelbook bluray, £21.49, Zavvi
So I Married An Axe Murderer, £8.99, Amazon
Amelie poster, from £17.16, Etsy

christmas list 2015 bookworm

For my not-so-inner bookworm:
Persuasion, £13.48, Amazon
Mansfield Park, £11.99, Amazon
Be Awesome: Modern Life for Modern Ladies, £7.19, Amazon

christmas list 2015 wardrobe

For my wardrobe:
Cardigan, £39.95, Joe Browns
Satchel, £32.00, Accessorize
Marc Jacobs bobby pin set, £8.00, Crown & Glory

christmas list 2015 geekery

Because I’m just a geek!
You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost), £11.89, Amazon
The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy: A Lexicon of Life Hacks for the Modern Lady Geek, £9.89, Amazon
Louise Belcher Pop! Vinyl Figure, £10.99, Zavvi
BFG journal, £9.99, Truffle Shuffle
Roller Derby Harley Quinn Pop! Vinyl Figure, £10.99, Zavvi
Wonder Woman socks, £6.99, Truffle Shuffle

I’d be pretty darn happy to find any of these under my Christmas tree!

Highlights of the week

So many lovely things on the interweb this week, including DIY projects, recipes, book reviews, stationery, incredible homes plus blogging tips. Happy reading!

New blog discoveries
DESIGNLOVEFEST
Violet+Key

Lifestyle posts
New in: Cute stationery – Burkatron
Meat, music, mayhem: Grillstock 2014 – Lily Doughball

Homes I want!
Inside our home: Bedroom – Little Winter
Edwardian cottage chic decor – Heart Handmake UK

On blogging…
Stop press! – Gingerly Pale
How to be self-disciplined: A freelancer’s guide – Hello Giggles
Blogger event etiquette – Blogbranch
Ask an expert: What does it cost to start a blog? – Chapter Friday

Film & TV
Lost (Classic): Pilot – The AV Club
Is Katniss Everdeen actually a strong female character? – Huffington Post
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For trailer – back to the graphic side of comics – The Guardian

Books
Tuesday Ten: Summer reading – colours and carousels
My favourite books by women writers – stasialikescakes
Summer reading: Book list – Gingerly Pale
In defense of reading YA at any age – Hello Giggles
Read Women Month tag – stasialikescakes

DIY projects
DIY pocket embroidery shirt – A Beautiful Mess

Recipes
Simple rosemary potato wedges – more about cat
Three perfect summer cocktails for the weekend – Chapter Friday

Other stories
15 things you didn’t realise are now 20 years old – Thought Catalog
Gandy’s Flip Flops: Footwear with soul – BBC News
Faux calligraphy – cupcakes and cashmere

Want, need, wear, read

want need wear read

Want: I spotted the awesome Disney Villains DVDs in HMV the other day and would have the whole range if it were up to me. Seems a bit daft to replace my DVDs just because of the cover though. The Little Mermaid‘s cover is my fave of the bunch
Need: We’ve taken to sitting on the decking with a disposable BBQ but the problem is it’s so low down! Perfect excuse to invest in a couple of colourful outdoor floor cushions from Dunelm Mill
Wear: Simple yet beautiful summer dress from Dorothy Perkins
Read: This book came was mentioned at the South West Blog Social and I reckon it’s worth a read

Videos

Top ten steelbooks from Zavvi

I love steelbooks. Given the option, if I’m buying a new release, I’ll get the super-duper, super-sexy bluray steelbook every time. If you plan on owning a film, you might as well go for the best version going. Plus the steelbooks look so damn awesome if (like me) you choose to make your DVD collection a ‘feature’ in your living room. Zavvi have several hundred steelbooks in their collection and I’ve managed to whittle them down to a top ten list – based solely on the beauty of the items. You didn’t think this would be based on the quality of the films now, did you? Again, in no particular order…

big steelbook from zavvi

Limited edition steelbook bluray, released 14 May, £19.99

Which one’s your favourite? I want the Sin City one sooo bad!

Film night

Last night I indulged in one of my favourite activities: film night. I even had a bowl of popcorn on hand, thanks to my new handy popcorn maker*! There’s something about drawing the curtains, sprawling across the sofa and stuffing handfuls of popcorn into your mouth, with the light of a 42-inch television casting the room in an eerie glow, which really adds to the experience.

film night

My film of choice: Brave**. But first, popcorn prep! This turned out to be quite extensive as popping corn isn’t exactly easy to come by in the darkest depths of Cornwall. I had to send my dear ol’ mum to a fruit and veg shop and drop a packet into my boyfriend’s place of work! How do we live in a world where you can’t get this from a supermarket?! Anyway, I digress. Turns out making the popcorn was easy peasy – just fill the measuring cup provided, pour into the base of the bowl, pop the lid on, place in the microwave and voila! Three minutes later, semi-instant popcorn! And that sound! Reminds me of movie nights as a kid. If, like me, you like your popcorn sweet, use the cooking time to melt some butter and sugar ready to pour over the top and mix in. Yum! I recommend shaking it up halfway through, as a few of the pieces on the bottom got a bit burnt. But then there was more than enough for just little old me.

film night: popcorn maker

I was pretty much raised on Disney films but despite having stayed reasonably up to date on the new releases, Brave had managed to pass me by, until last night. I’d heard a lot about it and was intrigued to see a children’s film with a strong, female lead.

film night: brave

First off, the visuals were pretty stunning. Even my boyfriend walked through the room and asked if it was a bluray or if it just upscaled well. I was given a standard definition copy to review, so either our bluray kicks ass at upscaling or it really is that beautiful. I’m really impressed with how far animation has come. I remember seeing Monsters Inc in the cinema and noticing how unusual it was that Sully’s fur moved so well. Brave clearly took a lot of people a long time to work on. Merida’s hair alone looks like a massive job, with its different tones and movement. And the landscapes looked almost photographic at times. Well done, Pixar!

As for the story, I was a tad disappointed that we still live in a world where films made for children, particularly girls, centre on a young woman who comes of age and is expected to marry against her will. The feminist in me was almost tempted to switch off but I persevered and was pleasantly surprised. Merida is a great heroine: strong, feisty, stubborn, determined… She can definitely hold her own! And it’s up to her to save the day rather than playing the typical damsel in distress. In fact, it’s refreshing to see that there isn’t really a male lead and no love interest or wedding in the final act.

Disney, and Pixar in particular, are famed for producing films which cater to both children and adults alike – the Toy Story franchise is a perfect example of this. With Brave, I couldn’t help but feel that, narratively, there wasn’t much here for the adults. When Merida is told that she has to marry one of the three suitors, she runs away and asks a witch to cast a spell to change her mother. Rather than changing her plans to marry off her daughter, she turns into a bear and Merida has just 48 hours to ‘mend the bond’ or she’ll be stuck that way forever. However, bear aside, it’s a sweet story about the relationship between a parent and a child. We can all remember, as a child, thinking that our parents don’t know or understand us and then growing up to realise that maybe they did just want what was best for us – that maybe they just went about it the wrong way. I might have teared up a teeny bit at the end. I’m soft as shit these days!

*The lovely chaps at IWOOT sent me one of their Heat n’ Eat popcorn makers
**Courtesy of Zavvi – lucky me!

Coming soon to DVD: Sunshine and Brazil steelbook

Ahhh! More pretty steelbooks! Up next (released on Monday) are Danny Boyle’s Sunshine and Terry Gilliam’s Brazil.

Sunshine and Brazil steelbooks from amazon

I have to admit, I haven’t seen Sunshine since I saw it in the cinema. I remember being completely blown away by it and a bit freaked out by the ending. It definitely needs a re-watch. And Brazil is one of those films I need to see again and pay a bit more attention to – not that that will help with a Gilliam film!

Sunshine is £17.68 and Brazil is £17.52 – both from Amazon.

Coming soon to DVD: Game of Thrones Season 3

I think I’m the only geek in the world who hasn’t seen Game of Thrones yet. It’s on the list and I intend to catch up this year – just as soon as I’m done with Castle, The Mentalist, The Walking Dead, Arrow, Elementary… and Chuck! I’ve still not seen Season 5. Then there’s Breaking Bad and Dexter… But Game of Thrones really is on the list, promise!

Game of Thrones season three dragon edition from amazon

Anyhoo, if you’ve started collecting the DVDs, you’ll love this Dragon Edition of Season 3 which is out on Monday. It’s £70.00, which is a tad ridiculous for one season of a TV show, but hardcore fans are bound to snap it up.