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Autumn Equinox....

So the earth has turned, we have entered Autumn... here there is a bright golden day to signify the change.  I love Autumn, it's mellow musty smell, the abundance of harvests, orange pumpkins, kids scurrying for fallen conkers.  The colour of the hedgerows, slowly, slowly turning through all the shades of rust until they fall in a heap. Lying there waiting to be kicked and thrown by laughing kids.

Autumn, a chance to build big bonfires, to celebrate the darker nights.  Toast marshmallows, sing songs and light candles.  Our wood burning stove will have a good clean out this month, in preparation for Winter.  I cannot wait to have it lit, it fills me with such excitement.  As does gathering of wood.  Loading bags of freshly chopped wood into the car.  

In these colder days, we spend a lot of time out, I prefer Autumn to wander the woods, smelling the richness of damp leaves. Spotting mushrooms, picking cob nuts.  On days like those we wear big woolly knits, fingerless gloves and a beanie hat.  Taking a basket of warming goodies to have a woodland picnic.  A flask of hot chocolate.  Popcorn. Squares of good chocolate and homemade flapjacks.  mmmm

Yes Autumn - hi there. Welcome once again.

Zara A/W 14 Lookbook...

It's getting a little colder isn't it?  I've stopped wearing my sandals (sob!), and am now wearing my trainers daily.  Covering up my summer tee's with cashmere and shirts.  I'm not ready for tights, just yet, but I am ready to fall into Autumn with chunky knits, and umber hues.

The new lookbook from Zara is beautiful.  The images alone are stunning, they have an air of independent magazine quality to them - like Oh Comely.  Just look at the clothes! I adore that fur coat over the lace dress, and that greenish cardigan over that crisp white shirt.  I can see me in that.

I've been a fan of Zara for many years, but only finding a few choice pieces amongst the rails.  Prefer natural fibres, not floaty chiffon and nylon.  It looks like Zara has grown up a little, and I love it.

Head over here for of their A/W14 lookbook.

A modern way to eat...

About 3 weeks ago I watched a programme on TV - Horizon.  A documentary about the health and environmental benefits to eating less meat - especially red & processed meat.  After watching it, Dan and I decided to eliminate meat from our daily diet (with exception to a Roast Chicken we shall still enjoy as a family).

So that's it, a veggie of sorts, but how do I find good, delicious, inspiring meals that will replace my usual meat based dishes.  So I asked fellow veggies Jen and Lia what they used, and they both recommended this book - 'A modern way to eat' by Anna Jones.  They were not wrong.  It is THE best recipe book I have ever read.

The style of book makes it easy to use, Anna suggests recipes for different types of meals, from breakfasts to dinner with friends, all written in a friendly way, with ideas on how to make the recipes your own.  There are also pages colour coded in green, on how you can go it alone and make beautiful dishes using key ingredients.

It has been three weeks since I have eaten meat (Dan has joined the boys with Spag Bol and Chicken goujons) but me - I am a fully fledged veggie.  Anna's book has made that happen, I have enjoyed eating Kale with tahini dressing, Lemony Lentil soup, Oat & banana pancakes and so on.  And I am pleased to say that I don't miss meat.

If you are wishing to try some vegetarian recipes, change your diet or looking for some inspiration in the kitchen, then this is the book for you.

Home Inspiration - The South African home of Miss Moss...

All images via Miss Moss
Diana's, (Miss Moss), Cape Town home is beautiful! Recently she gave a little home tour on her wonderful blog.  I am smitten with the herringbone floor, her shelf arrangements & the large colourful prints.

I particularly love that shelving unit with all the magazines piled up.  I have pile of mags that need a suitable home... this I must do.

Of course, what also makes this house a home are the plants in every room, the personal objects with history, and a sense of 'un-styled' comfort.

More images are over on Miss Moss - go check them out.

Sidetracked magazine...

During my 20's I travelled for five years, visiting many beautiful countries, meeting many interesting people.  I travelled for so long, hoping to rid myself of my wanderlust, but alas, I fear this only made it more ingrained.

Dan is a man of the mountains, it's part of him.  I suppose spending his Uni days in deep Wales does that to someone... soaring hills and large wooded expanses.  We both love adventure.  And long for it. 

Nowadays, with two boys, a house, and job, we can't just gather up our bags and head off to the great open road like we once did.  Instead we plan and take micro-adventures close to home. Saying that, I would love to one day take the boys to India or South East Asia.

Instead, we enjoy being inspired by stories of expeditions.  Recently, I discovered a beautiful magazine - Sidetracked - and immediately knew it was for us.  Awesome photography coupled with great articles written by intrepid explorers, thrill seekers and adventures nuts.  Volume 2 is a beaut! I particularly love the cover story, about the Tibetan nomads, of Chang Tang.  I have always wanted to visit Tibet. And the herdsman in Mongolia - the photography!

Dan and I have devoured this magazine, it's beauty & the adventure - it has inspired us to plan trips and to get out there more.

Get inspired - go buy volume 1 and 2 in their shop.