Jan. 8th, 2011 10:41 pm
lnr: (Default)

So... the last thing I really posted about was my parathyroid all clear (hurrah). Since then I've been busy, but I'll briefly summarise. Click through each photo for the rest of the album.

On my birthday (a Friday) we went out for dinner with Becky and Stuart and then went to see the latest Harry Potter film, which was great fun. Sadly we couldn't stop out for a drink afterwards as we had to get an early train to Burton-on-Trent for the wedding of Mike's cousin Stephen and Anna. It was lovely to see lots of Mike's family again so soon after our wedding: Chris and Margaret (Stephen's mum and dad) were particularly smug that it was now their turn to be proud parents of the groom. I love weddings, and this was no exception: lovely ceremony, gorgeous dress, a nice meal and then speeches, *loads* of dancing with a real band, and an excellent buffet.

Since we were in the region anyway Mike decided his birthday present to me was a bit of a holiday in the Peak district, so his Mum and Dad kindly gave us a lift to Buxton on the Sunday (very kind, since it turns out to be a very awkward journey to do by train, all those hills in the way). We pottered round the town on Sunday afternoon and went to see Show of Hands at the Opera House - which was great fun but made us feel very young :) On Monday we got a bus into the middle of nowhere (the bus driver kindly dropped us even though there was no stop) and went for an 8 mile walk along the Roaches to Lud's Church. Considering the time of year we were lucky there were only a few very muddy bits, and the weather smiled on us far more than we deserved, it was brilliant! And then on Tuesday we visited Poole's Cavern (a show cave dating from Victorian times) and Solomon's Temple (a folly on the hill above the town). It was a lovely few days away and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

In mid-December we managed another picturesque weekend away, this time in Yorkshire. We went to visit my mum and dad, and Mike's parents joined us there too. We had a Saturday out in the Dales, visiting the Strid near Bolton Abbey, having a fantastic lunch in Burnsall, and then driving up over the tops, past the last of the snow, and down through Malham. Fantastic. And on the Sunday we were joined by my sisters and John, Dave and Oliver for a big family not-quite-Christmas dinner, complete with turkey and trifle! It doesn't match getting to see them at Christmas itself but it was definitely a highlight.

And then of course there was Christmas proper. This year we spent it in the Forest of Dean with Mike's parents, and were joined by Pete and Val and Val's mum Hermine late on Boxing Day. It was another lovely break with lots of food (it wouldn't be Christmas otherwise) and lots of long walks in the snow and time watching the birds in the garden: Mike and I bought ourselves a good pair of binoculars and a bird watching scope for Christmas and enjoyed making the most of them.

Since we got back we've mostly had a quiet time - except for one lovely evening hosted by Clare. We've been shopping and spent our wedding presents in the sales - new cutlery, crockery, bedding and other odds and ends for round the home. And today we defrosted the freezer - we know how to live :) It may not be a very exciting start to 2011 but it's a happy one, and we're looking forward to the rest of the year.

lnr: (Default)

I begged a few of my favourites so far from friends and family and have put them on Flickr. I've tagged them "snapeblairwedding", since that's the tag Rachel already used for hers, if you're uploading any of your own I guess that's the tag to go for :)

The official photographer also has some of his favourites on his blog, which are brilliant, and you'll also find a link there to the full set, where you can order digital copies in low or high resolution and prints in a variety of sizes.

lnr: (Wedding)

We got married, and we're blissfully happy about it :)

OK, so that's the very short version. The slightly longer version is that we had an absolutely fabulous day. My dress and hair and flowers were stunning, and couldn't help but make me feel people weren't just being nice when they said I looked gorgeous, and Mike looked lovely too. The only cloud on the day was that Mike's mum Gina was very unwell in the morning and missed the ceremony, and that will always seem a little sad, but thankfully she was well enough to join us later, because I'd hate for her to have missed it all.

The ceremony was moving, Janet read a passage from Captain Corelli's Mandolin and Rae most of a poem by W H Auden, and both were absolutely lovely. The registrar was great, and even had a tissue on hand for Mike, and hopefully everyone enjoyed the music as much as we enjoyed choosing it - the theme from the Princess Bride for the entrance and The Darkness with I Believe In A Thing Called Love for the exit.

The weather held long enough for a lovely reception with all our friends and family in Old Court, and hopefully not too much of that was taken up by the formal photographs. It then proceeded to tip it down during the wedding breakfast, but in the splendour of the Old Hall we didn't care except for the quick dash across the courtyard to the loos. The food was lovely, the company even better, and the speeches were good and not too long.

And after dinner there was drinking and dancing in the Old Kitchens (we were in the Old part of college all day :) and a buffet back in the hall for any of those who had room. We had our first dance to Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, which was great fun, and I think it has to be about the only wedding disco over where I've seen not just moshing and slam dancing but an actual circle pit. We rocked. But also rolled and grooved as well, with hopefully a bit of something for nearly everyone.

Everybody I've spoken to since says they had a lovely time, but it can't possibly be as much fun as we did, and they can't possibly have been as happy. Hopefully the official photos will be available fairly soon, but until then I'm relying on seeing those of family and friends on Facebook. I can't sensibly link to those here but I'll ask permission to put a few on Flickr. If you've any photos you took on the day I'd love to see them! We'll tell you all about the honeymoon and post lots of photos of our own in due course. Suffice to say we've had a lovely time in Italy too!

Thanks so much to not only everyone who came and made it such a special day but to all those who sent good wishes in any way shape or form. They're all very much appreciated.

The readings )

lnr: (Default)

Bit out of date ;)

On the bank holiday weekend we went off to Cardiff. Partly to visit Rae and Adam for a BBQ and partly just for a break. We booked a hotel in town and spent saturday afternoon shopping - mike bought an ipod touch - and then went out to Jamie's Italian for dinner. A little pretentious but the food was really really good.

On Sunday morning we got up and went for a potter round the castle which was great fun. Took loads of photos which I will add a link to later. It rained as we were heading up to Penarth but gradually cleared up and we had a lovely afternoon sitting around in the sun in good company and eating lots of meat :)

When we got back on Monday I promptly ordered muself an ipod too - just in time for them to launch a new version! Never mind.

I had Tuesday off work and took myself off to the local hairdresser for a trial hair do - which I think will look lovely. And I have my final dress fitting on Thursday, it's all go!

This weekend was another busy one. On Saturday we got on the train to Brandon and cycled the 6 miles to RSPB Lakenheath where we spent 3 hours pottering about and taking photos. We spotted a couple of interestibg new birds to us (a bittern snd some marsh harriers) but the other Blairs will be relieved to knpw they're not in the book! I'll lonk to those photos too.

And on Sunday it eas another bike ride over to Duxford for the battle of britain air show to which Mike's work had invited us to celebrate their 75th anniversary. It opened with the red arrows and closed with a display from*16* spitfires and turned out to be really quite impressive. The burgers and drinks were a bit expensive but at least the cream cakes were free and we had a brilliant view. Haven't had time to process those photos yet - we took rather a lot even though we eventually ran out of battery!

And then it's back to work and our last full week before the wedding and then honeymoon. Can't wait. :)

And I'm posting this from mu new toy. Not sure about the LJ app yet, it doesn't understand about default views which is a bit of a drawback.

PS Cardiff photos and Lakenheath photos.

Hen night

Aug. 23rd, 2010 10:59 am
lnr: (Default)

First of all I just want to say a huge thanks to Emily for organising it. I had a fabulous time and was pretty much completely in the dark the whole way through. Perfect :)

Read more... )

I did get a couple of pictures on the digital camera early on, though it wouldn't fit in the handbag along with the disposable one in the evening so you'll have to wait for the rest. They're over on Facebook but you should be able to see them.

lnr: (Default)

I have given Emily free rein (within the bounds of reasonable good taste) to plan my hen night without consulting me, so as to be a surprise. I mention this mostly as a warning, so no-one accidentally spills the beans :)

Hen night

Jul. 20th, 2010 10:04 pm
lnr: (Default)

I'm not a very girly girl, but I love traditions and a hen night is traditional. My sister has volunteered to organise it so it will be in reasonably good taste. So who would like to be invited to come along to my hen night? Dates, times, etc will be organised later, but probably the 21st/22nd of August. [Poll #1594664]

lnr: (Default)

Gosh it's warm, isn't it?

It's been a funny couple of weeks. Last week we were in Leeds for Walter's funeral, which was really sad, but at the same time nice to see people. It doesn't half take it out of you! And since then we seem to have been mostly watching football or tennis :)

Still, yesterday I got to go into town and buy wedding shoes and try on my wedding dress, which is fabulous but *very* hot. And today we went for a lovely bike ride over to Fowlmere to wander round the RSPB nature reserve. We spotted a reed warbler and some reed buntings and a hobby, along with some very cute young moorhens and a *lot* of woodpigeons. And several fairly large fish in the beautifully clear stream. A lovely morning, but boy was it hot cycling home again. There'll be photos at some point, plus some from our garden a couple of weeks back.

Been a bit headachy on and off since, despite being careful to take water with us. Still, at least I avoided the sunburn. Spent the afternoon watching the footy and shouting at the ref :) And then managed to order our wedding cake and sort out a first draft of our invitation letter. A few people have already sadly said they can't make it but at least that means we can invite a few extras. Hopefully get these sorted and sent this week :) It's all very exciting!

Oh, and I should get round to writing up the last few books I've read before I forget them completely, but I really enjoyed Wilkie Collins' The Woman in White.

lnr: (Default)

I've got in a bad habit lately of posting minor stuff on Facebook and nothing here on Livejournal. But the fact FB has now started importing people's journals properly again (judging from the sudden rash of old posts on my friends pages) I've been prompted to come and say hello :)

Not a huge lot to say mind, I've been chilling out, playing a bit of Sims World Adventures (The Sims meets Indiana Jones), a bit of Lego Batman (which we've now finished apart from one really *stupid* bit where you have to ski down a slope and get through all the gates and it's almost impossible). We had a second long walk after our Roman one - from Great Chesterford to Royston mostly along the Ickneild Way. Managed not to get burnt again and had a lovely pub lunch on the way.

All this walking is sneaky practice for our summer holiday: walking the Pennine Way from Gargrave to Appleby (two points just about on the way which conveniently have train stations :). Mum and dad are going to come and say hi and stay with us for the first night in Gargrave which should be lovely. We're still planning the wedding too, with me having contacted hotels and DJs this week - and having got our wedding rings a few weeks back. It's lovely to have my anniversary/engagement ring back and fitting again too!

Back to the hospital next week for a check up at the parathyroid clinic: had blood tests this week to check hormone level and calcium levels so they should have the results of those and the ones I had done in January. Hopefully all should be well. And I'm still gradually losing weight, and hoping when I go back to see the GP next month my blood tests there will be all good too, even though I'm not taking meds any more. I really don't want to have to start taking them again!

S'all good really.

Oh yes and of course I'm off to vote later today, although I doubt I'll be staying up for the election results tonight. I doubt it's going to be terribly good news in the morning no matter what the result is, but it could well be interesting!

lnr: (The Blairs)

This weekend my baby sister got married in York, and lo it was brilliant.

I love weddings anyway, but family weddings with loads of people you love, plus lots of lovely people you met at the hen night, and lovely weather and a gorgeous venue on top, well they're the best. Em looked stunning, they both looked incredibly happy, and so did pretty much everyone else, apart from poor Steph and Dave who were a bit poorly, but still doing their best to have a good time (and hopefully feeling much better now).

I've never seen so many lovely frocks in one place :) A 5pm ceremony meant we just caught the last of the sunshine in the garden afterwards, before retiring inside for dinner and then dancing. Then back to the hotel for a last drink in the bar before bed. We got to sleep around 2:30, tired but happy.

And on Sunday we got to see lots of people again over breakfast and milling round the hotel lobby, before heading off to help mum and dad pack everything in the car, have a cuppa with Sue and Steve, and then spend the afternoon pottering about York on our own. We went on a river boat and saw goslings!

I've not even vaguely done it justice, but I can't wait until our turn in September and we can do it all again :)

lnr: (Default)

Friday afternoon Mike and I took off, and went to chat with one of the team at Queens' about details for our Wedding: things like rough timings, and plans for numbers in the day and evening, a vague idea of what we might choose to eat, and knowing when they need to know final numbers and so on. It was useful. Then we went shopping, and bought walking socks for our summer holiday in the Pennines :) And went and chose and ordered wedding rings. It was a nice afternoon.

Yesterday afternoon Mike's parents arrived for the weekend. Taking advantage of the mild weather we went off for a tramp around Wandlebury: through the woods and down to the roman road, and round the ring ditch where we followed a kestrel from tree to tree for a short while. We went into town in the evening, and tried out the new Côte restaurant on Bridge Street - we weren't really sure what to expect, but were pleased to find a fairly classic French menu: I had steak tartare followed by moules frites, Mike had paté de fois gras and steak haché, whereas Evan and Gina both skipped the starters and went for coq au vin. Lovely light bottle of red to go with it and nice puddings. We'll definitely be back.

And today the weather has been even nicer, so we hopped in their car and headed over to Wimpole. I don't know what it is with parents and National Trust properties lately: the other week we went to Anglesey Abbey and found it packed with people come for the snowdrops: today it turns out Wimpole was having a bonus day with free entry for everyone, including to the home farm where they're in the middle of lambing. We had a lovely time, and Mike took loads of photos, which I'll post on Facebook as soon as it will let me upload them. And as well as some very cute farm animals (and some very tame sparrows) we also added a treecreeper and some jackdaws to the list of birds spotted so far this year. And we had a lovely walk up through the park past the lake (which you can't even see from the house) to the Gothic Folly on the hill. Lovely and warm in the sun, shirtsleeves weather! Home for a lovely late lunch, with the patio door open to let the sunshine (and the neighbour's cat) in. Fab. It's a shame they had to head off so soon for the drive home.

Now that's what I call a nice weekend.

Addendum: photos


Oct. 23rd, 2009 06:47 pm
lnr: (Default)

We've booked our wedding venue, and will be getting married on 18th September 2010 at Queens'. We're very excited. Have to go do the Notice of Marriage at the Register Office in the next few weeks, and next weekend me and mum are going to look at wedding dresses. I shall try not to go on about it too much :)

No new health news :) Back to Addies on Monday to get rescanned to see if the kidney stone has really gone. Still waiting for the results of the blood tests they took at the end of September to see if my hormone and calcium levels have gone back to normal. Otherwise pretty well though, scar is already visibly fading, and I'm still slowly losing weight. 5.5kg to go until I'm no longer obese, at which point I might think about trying to maintain my weight instead. We'll see.

A couple of lovely parties fairly recently for Laura and Karen's birthdays. Other than that life's been pretty quiet: lots of reading, lots of watching DVDs, not much else. It's all good though.

Oh, and I'm vaguely considering upgrading to Windows 7, since I can get it cheap as an academic, but it seems my graphics card isn't compatible with their shiny new "Aero" style desktop, I'd need new drivers for my ethernet card (not so bad), my AV won't work on it, I'd need more memory to run the 64-bit version, and it's not clear whether any of my games and so-on would run on it. Oh and it definitely won't do the virtualised WinXP compatibility stuff. So it's not looking like a great move really. I might just buy the extra memory instead :)

lnr: (wedding2)

OK, I promised to talk about the house move. To be honest now it's 6 weeks ago, and hard to remember most of the details. Rachel, Ian, Richard, Pete and Laura were all great help though, and we got done in much less time than anyone expected due to lots of helpful hands (OK and to forward planning too). I took quite a few photos the day we moved, and of the place as it gradually got into shape over the next day as we unpacked, and couple of weeks as we bought and built more furniture, they're vaguely commented in the gallery below. Suffice to say that we're really really happy with the place, and loving living here. The only downside is a noisy neighbour, but another neighbour actually contacted our landlord about it, so he's looking into it for us. We've been and bought yet more furniture today, carrying a 23.5 kg media unit back from Fitzroy Street, and that's currently gluing together in the living room. We're just waiting on our dining table and chairs to arrive and then the place will be ready for a housewarming of some sort. Can't promise to invite you all, sorry.

van loading

I also promised to talk about the wedding, and that's now a fortnight ago, so I'm hazy on details there too. We went up on Thursday night after work, and had a quiet night in with mum and dad before going shopping on Friday morning for a few last minute odds and ends like earrings! Friday afternoon Steph came over and we had a trial run of getting her into the dress, which was corsetted with big ribbons up the back, and thankfully turned out much easier than mum had feared. Later we were joined by Grandad, Alan and Sharon (over from Northern Ireland), Hilary and Gem (friends from when Steph was at Uni) Em and John, and Dave and his family. It was a bit of a mad evening but we eventually had a lovely meal at the Navigation Tavern down by the canal.

On Saturday we had to get up early to get all of us through the bath and the shower before breakfast of scrambled eggs on toasted bagels, with bucks fizz to drink. Then mum, Em, Steph and I had to dash down the the hairdressers at 9am (when they open) to have our hair styled for the day. With three of us it was just a wash and blow dry (straight for me and Em, with plenty of volume for mum), but Steph was having hers put up in curls, and it was incredible how lovely it looked but didn't half need a lot of hair spray! We didn't have much time to faff though, for the cars were coming at 10:15, so it was back to the house to change and do makeup in a mad rush (including sewing my underwear into my dress to stop it showing - do you know how impossible it is to get a strapless plunge bra in a 40DD?). Still, we waved Steph and my dad off in the Rolls and Em and I followed in the Daimler, and John was left to drive Mike, mum and the buttonholes over to the wedding venue at Oakwell Hall.

Steph and Dad had arrived just before us, and we were escorted round the back with them to the old kitchen to go through the details before the wedding, before it was time for the music to play and for Emily and I to follow them down the aisle. It was a lovely wedding, with two readings from Mum and from Dave's sister Jenny. Steph and Dave both looked lovely (well, especially Steph) and both Emily and I were witnesses, along with Best Man Thomas. After the service we all congregated outside in the glorious sunshine in the gardens and rose petal confetti was thrown and lots of photos taken. Much amusement when the photographer asked those who were not family to leave the shot and nearly everyone stayed.

Mike and I had a quick look round the hall itself, before we were called because it was time for me to go. This time Steph and Dave in the Rolls and mum and dad in the Daimler with us too, and again John got to play chauffeur for Mike and all the stuff. This took us on to the reception venue at Haley's Hotel and Restaurant in Headingley. There we had the public rooms to ourselves pretty much, so had a nice lounge around in the bar and library before a lovely dinner and some excellent speeches. Lunch finished at around 5, and then nearly everyone congregated on the steps or the lawn outside. Drinking wine and talking and playing catch with the small kids (Jake 5, Anna 3, Alex and James about 20 months). It was all rather lovely. And after we'd managed a small nap in our lovely hotel room we got up again for the evening do at 7ish, with more guests, a blues duo playing live in the lounge, a buffet dinner with a recorded "radio show" I'd prepared playing in the backgroun for that - though timings didn't work out right and only about half of it got played. Then Steph and Dave danced their first dance to Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl", and we partied on with more dancing in the lobby for the young-uns til Mike and I wimped out shortly after the best man around midnight. According to mum most of the rest gave up around 1 or 1:30, but there were a small bunch of die-hards up until 3.

And the lovely thing about staying in the same hotel was that we all got to meet up again over breakfast, and wave Steph and Dave off for their honeymoon in Turkey, before packing everything up into John's car and the immediate family heading back to Mirfield for a quiet couple of hours and a tapas lunch before we had to get the train home. Part of me still can't quite believe Steph's married, but I'm really really happy for her, and we all had a lovely lovely day. We didn't get a chance to take many pictures, we were too busy enjoying ourselves, but the few we did are here (mostly taken by Mike).

Bride and bridesmaids

lnr: (cycle)

The highway code is preparing for a new version, as it regularly does, and the current version before parliament for consideration contains the phrase "cyclists should use cycle facilities where possible" - regardless of whether convenient or even safe. There's a petition up on the number 10 site requesting that this clause be re-thought. As many of my friends-list cycle I thought I'd mention it here (previously it has travelled through cam.misc, the cambridge cycling campaign mailing list, the #chiark irc channel, and another friend's LJ - it's interesting that I can recognise names from all those places). Anyway it's here if you're interested:

In other news, and on which I'll try and write more later, since nothing has really happened until you've blogged about it:

  • My sister is married and the wedding was utterly utterly lovely.
  • We still don't have a desk, but may do tomorrow if we're lucky.
  • And 65 Days of Static were excellent last night at the Junction 2 - proper tour later this year, do catch them if you can.

lnr: (family)

We have internet, yay! So obviously I should catch up a bit and talk about the two subjects I promised to mention:

  • My sister's hen night(s) in Newcastle, March 9th-11th
  • Our house move, March 17th, and settling in thereafter.

I'm not even a month late (just).

So, Steph's getting married the week after Easter, and she decided to have her hen night nice and early, as is much the tradition these days. Emily and Steph were both students in Newcastle, and Em lived there quite a while afterwards, and I think this paid a part in choosing the location. And going so far we decided to make two nights of it, and all arranged to arrive on Friday.

I got there first, despite coming nearly the furthest, by the simple expedient of taking the whole day off to get the train up. Natalie had done all the organising, and had booked us into a hotel some way out of town, which meant we spent quite a bit on taxis, but it was pretty cheap, and it did have a pool. So when most of the others arrived late afternoon we unpacked and then realised there was time for a swim. It was rather nice really, although admittedly we spent more time in the steam room and spa pool than actually swimming. A good place to chat and catch up on the gossip. Then we all got ready and headed into town, where we met up with Emily and Hilary who were the last arrivals. We just had time for a quick drink in the pub opposite the station before heading round the corner to a rather good indian restaurant, which Emily had recommended. We had a lovely meal anyway, but by the end of it we were rather tired, what with long days and long journeys, and we headed back to the hotel for bed.

On Saturday Emily and I needed to go shoe shopping, for our bridesmaids outfits, so we headed into Newcastle and hit the shops, joined by Steph, Hilary and Heidi. By the time we emerged from Clarks I'd spent 85 quid on 3 pairs of shoes: one for the ceremony, a flatter pair for in the evening since I'm not used to heels, and a pair of black pumps-style things for me, to replace the ones that were worn out at home. I've not spent so much on shoes in years! We dropped them back at the car, then met up with Kathryn and Natalie, who'd stayed back near the hotel, for lunch. This was at a little Italian place called Pani's, which is just off the road heading down from the monument towards the quayside, and I definitely recommend it if you're passing. Friendly, nice atmosphere, good food. We finished the afternoon by wandering the rest of the way down the hill and crossing the winking bridge (which was wobbling a little alarmingly) to wander round the Baltic - which was fab.

Back to the hotel to shower and change and straighten our hair for the evening out which was to be the hen night proper we all gathered in Kathryn and Natalie's room to surprise Steph with some presents (a photo album with contributions and notes from all of us, and a pair of flip flops which emboss the words "just married" in the sand as you walk), and drink some pink bubbly. I even made an exception for lent for the purposes of the celebration and had one glass myself - the rest of the weekend I stuck to soft drinks. Managed to get some pictures of this part of the proceedings, if nothing else. The group photo was rather fun to do with the camera on a timer and balanced on top of the standard issue telly, but it came out pretty well. (Click through for rest).

All of us

Anyway we supped up and headed back into town, in search of our dinner, which was booked at a teriyaki restaurant. The trouble was it didn't seem to be either of the ones that we'd thought it was. We eventually found it though, with the help of groom Dave on the internet relayed by Steph's mobile. It turned out to be very nice, though we didn't get to sit around the hot plate and have our dinner cooked in front of us. Very good value too. Anyway next stop was The Light - sort of like a posh shopping centre but full of bars and clubs instead of shops, and with a casino upstairs apparently. We spent the evening mostly outside one bar watching the world go by, then inside the same bar with some cheesy music to dance to, and then across the road at Tiger Tiger: a club on 3 floors, which we ended up in a rather crowded bar of, dancing in not really enough space, but had a good time anyway. Though Heidi and Emily both spent some time strategically trying to put one of the rest of us between them and the strange foreign boys who were trying rather too persistently to chat them up. We left around 2:30, knackered but having had fun.

The only trouble with late nights and staying in hotels is the checkout time the next morning. I woke and looked at the clock and was about to roll over and go back to sleep when I realsied that actually we only had about an hour and we'd best get up if we wanted showers first. Still, eventually we all got packed and gathered in the foyer. It seemed a shame to split up just yet though, so we all squeezed into Em and Nat's cars and headed out to Tynemouth to look at the sea and find some lunch. There was a minor disaster trying to get parked, but not harm done to anything but nerves, and mostly it was just because we were too tired. We managed to find a local bakery with a seated area anyway, and tucked into stotties and toasted sandwiches with bacon and egg and so on, and had a nice cuppa, before Emily dropped me and Hil back at Newcastle station for the train home.

It was a lovely weekend anyway, even if several things didn't go quite as planned, and Steph enjoyed herself, which was the whole point. No balloons, no ribbons, no L-plates and comedy tshirts, no dares and no making idiots of ourselves, just a good weekend out with good company. Just what we all needed. And here I'm going to stop for now, since a) this is v long and b) my arms ache, as we still have no desk - of which more anon.

lnr: (avatar)

As most of you know I work for the Engineering Dept of Cambridge University, mostly dealing with email related things. We have a bunch of people with a shared role account on hermes, the university mail system. They're using two different mailers to access it, and saving messages in IMAP folders. They're nearing quota, and want to archive old material in a format which is accessible (in particular) in both Outlook and Eudora. We have shared filespace, but could do with ideas as to how on earth to store this mail in a way that they can all access it.

So far it looks like the best answer is to continue to run our own IMAP server, so it can be used for such archives. We were hoping to run it down though. Hermes is hoping to provide larger quotas in future (currently at 250MB default, up to 1G, which this team are already allocated), but don't intend it to be used as an archive.

Will write at some point about a) sisters hen-night and b) moving house, but I'm a bit busy at work this week as a result of b) and will be at a course all next week, so it'll probably have to wait til we have internet at home. Suffice to say: thanks to all who helped, and we're very happy.


Oct. 23rd, 2006 10:40 pm
lnr: (Pink hair 2006)

Fabulous weekend at home:

Friday: Easy journey up with Mike on the train. Almost as soon as I'm in the door Steph asks me if I'd join Emily in being her bridesmaid. Absolutely chuffed to bits and obv say yes. Pleasant evening with homemade chilli mountain and lots of red wine, good company and good music.

Saturday: Spend the day bridesmaid dress shopping with Mum, Steph and Em - great fun. Obviously we decide on (one of) the dresses we tried on in the first shop (Monsoon). Amazing that we could find something that suited the shapes and colourings of both myself and Emily. Coffee and cake late morning, and lunch at Pret. The boys (Dad, Dave, Mike) spend the day at Elvington air museum, and join us for an evening drink before Emily has to head back to Hull to go see Razorlight (the hardship!). Dinner at Brook's which is fabulous. Gorgeous food and a lovely relaxed atmosphere - how many posh restaurants give each table crayons to draw on the tablecloth? Home for a cocktail before bed.

Sunday: Mike and I went out for a nice walk along the canal before Em and John arrive to join us all for lunch. Dave rings his parents and they're happy with the choice of date, so if mum can confirm with the venues and registrar on Monday they'll be getting married on Easter Saturday. Break open the cassis and bubbly and have kir royales as an aperitif to celebrate. Fabulous lunch cooked by Steph with able assistance from Dave: spanish cooked meat with tomato salad to start, followed by a lovely lamb stew with roasted red peppers, and finishing with lemon tart and chantilly cream. We sat around the dining with coffee and liqueurs and the rest of the red wine until Em began to get peckish again (about 5) and we broke out the cheese. The rest of the evening was spent recovering, and we shared some chips for a late supper over the DVD of the Isle of Wight Festival at about 9pm.

Monday: The others headed off to work leaving us to get up for a leisurely bath before getting the train home again. Where we decided it was time to spruce up a little in time for Whitby so Mike and I dyed each other's hair. His is a permanent blue-black which suits him better than I expected, and mine's got my standard rose-red dye all the way through, which means the brown bits are now a rich browny-purple and the front and some of the ends are lovely and bright magenta again. I've spent the rest of the afternoon gently geeking and then played with the self-portrait mode of my digicam and taken some surprisingly OK pics, including my new icon. See below for gallery of rest. Cunning camera angles can make one look so much thinner ;-)

Thanks: to lovely family for making it a brilliant weekend and lovely boyfriend for sharing it and making it even better.

Yay, pink

lnr: (dark side of the moon)

Ernie wrote up the MFATGG gig (here) and he's captured pretty much everything I'd want to say about it. It was a shame Capdown weren't there, the two supports were OK but not special, the Gimmes themselves were *great* but there was a tiny edge missing. It was only tiny though. And not having heard their version of Stairway to Heaven it completely cracked me up. Don't Cry For Me Argentina was probably my favourite of the ones they played, with I Believe I can Fly close behind. I was really sad they didn't play Who Put The Bomp though. Amusingly I have more bruises from the previous night's wedding Ceilidh than I do from the gig.

Speaking of the wedding it was lovely. Matthew looked very nervous but gradually relaxed over the day. Sally just couldn't stop grinning and spent the ceremony alternating between beaming at Matthew and beaming at the crowd. I only just arrived in time but Tom kindly pointed out there was a spare seat next to him up behind the choir and it turned out to be a lovely space to sit, with the full harmonies of the hymns swelling up around us. Somehow one of the most touching moment for me was the combination of a gurgling baby and birdsong through the windows - it just caught the spirit of the occasion: a celebration of life and love. They both looked stunning too, which can never hurt. The ceilidh in the evening was great too in a much more boisterous and informal fashion. I probably danced all but four or five of the dances, which was great fun. Mike and I thoroughly messed up the Gay Gordons which apparently amused some of the onlookers nearly as much as it amused us. Danced with lots of lovely people anyway, friends and strangers alike.

It was the waltzing at the end though that led to last night's adventure. Mike had talked of learning to ballroom dance before and we enjoyed even our cheating version of the waltz so much that we figured we ought to go ahead and learn it properly. And what do you know it turned out that yesterday was more or less our last chance to join this term's beginners ballroom classes with Cambridge Dancers Club (a university society, but open to non-university members too). So we went along and learned the beginning of Cha Cha Cha, Waltz and Jive. And only stood on each other and the other couples a few times. There were quite a lot of us there in the end, and we weren't the only ones stepping in having missed a class so it wasn't *too* embarrassing. Afterwards we waltz stepped down Downing Street to the amusement of passers-by and found dinner at Dojos. Which was nice, although the food was disappointing compared to usual and the service a bit lacking too. Maybe I'll go back to my usual favourite Udon noodles next time and stop trying to experiment - the flat ones I had instead were all stuck together and the sauce they were with was a bit too overly rich and glutinous. Still, it was a fun evening.

Tonight I'm off with Ernie to see the Dresden Dolls at the junction, after which I shall read what Liz said about their Manchester gig at the weekend (here). Next week we have the NME New Music tour and the Divine Comedy. The following week Mike and Mobbsy are joining us too for Therapy? in London, and after that I have no more gigs booked. Thea Gilmore in September is almost certain but it's a bit early to buy tickets even for me. If anyone has any other suggestions for things to see in Cambridge and possibly London do let me know.

lnr: (flowers)
To Col and Kirsten. I hope you're always as blissfully happy together in your hearts as you've been today.
lnr: (blair castle)

Full set of (rather dodgy) pics from Rach and Tony's wedding reception are now up at

I find it terribly amusing that these pics of B and L and Mike and Richard really were taken next to each other on the camera, and I didn't even notice the similarity of the shots until looking at them all together later.

There are links to other people's pics at - do add yours if you've taken any!

August 2017

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