Sunday, 11 December 2016

Dressed For Excess





Life's too short to spend it in jogging bottoms.


Last night was another big birthday night out, this time taking in the high spots of Dudley, so pissed engrossed in conversation that we had to be chased down the road after leaving the Sikh pub without paying for our curry. My friend Tina jokingly asked if doing a runner from a restaurant was on my Things To Do Now You're 50 bucket list but no, it isn't. She knows that I don't subscribe to such rubbish. I aim to live my life in the here and now, not ticking off stuff in a vain attempt to impress people or validate my existence.


After a bracing walk to blow away the cobwebs (aka last night's six pints of lager), the heating's been cranked up and we're about the spend the afternoon watching utter crap on the telly, accompanied by the cats and a party pack of Gujarati Mix from the corner shop and I may as well dress for the occasion.


Whilst still on the subject of birthdays here's my fab presents. Booze, jewellery, vintage clothes, traditional Asian pieces, fair trade & crafty stuff, Barry M, there's even a poodle lurking around the back!


Liz painted and framed this picture of us, based on a selfie (god, I hate that word) we took at Glastonbury, 2014.


She also surprised me by including a couple of sketches we'd done when we were about 8 years old (42 years ago!) when we used to sit together at junior school and draw the most horrendous outfits we could dream up. Scarily a yellow and pink flowery crimplene dress sounds exactly like something I'd wear now. In fact, there we go!


Jon rendered me speechless with this vintage Egyptian Revival giant pendant and cuff, made by jewellers, Thomas Fattorini and Sons, who've been trading in Birmingham since 1827.

He says to tell you that he's not daft and he didn't pay the price some on-line vintage dealers are charging. He likes a bargain as much as I do.

WEARING: 1970s nylon hostess dress (birthday present from G&T of Babouskha Vintage), feather boa (20p, car boot sale), 1960s Biba velvet & glass dragonfly choker (My Mum's)

Plans for this week include sorting our Indian visas out, utilising our National Trust membership and dodging anything Xmas related for as long as is humanely possible. I've made a pact with myself to avoid Christmas until at least December 20th. So if I haven't commented on your Xmas themed blog posts or liked your Facebook photos of trees, tinsel or trips to German Markets it's not you I hate, it's having the subject rammed down my throat since the day after Hallowe'en. If 50 means being a cantankerous old bat then so be it.

See you soon!

Linking to Patti & the gang for Visible Monday.


95 comments:

  1. Ha! Don't you look the fecking business for lounging about? Love Liz's painting of you both and what about Jon's pressie? It's superb. I be you were speechless at it's gorgeousness. Glad to hear you're having a fab time being 50!
    Loves ya.
    xxxxx

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    1. 50 is fab, isn't birthday year twin? Off to 'Spoons in a bit for another cheeky celebration. I have a better social life now than I did as a 20 year old! xxx

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  2. I have no idea what a hostess dress is but you look mighty fine in it! xxx

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    1. Cheers, Em! It's a bit like a posh nightie, a dress designed for staying in and entertaining. No zips or anything uncomfortable so you can whip it off when you collapse into bed! xxx

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  3. You look ready for anything in that gorgeous outfit! Glad you got lots of great presents. Have a great week! :)

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  4. Hello Vix! Your day sounds just perfect, and that outfit! The jewelry was made for you, that's for sure.
    I hate that word too. Ughh! I try to keep using 'self-portrait' but sometimes the other word slips out. Heheee!
    xoxox

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    1. Thanks, Carol! Self-portrait sounds much posher although those duck faced pouts that so women seem to pull when they take them is just an embarasment. xxx

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  5. You are truly a style Goddess dressed for a party. It isn't often I see you in this colour and it suits you beautifully. Silky sexiness supreme!

    I'm with you on the whole Christmas thing. This year as the husband is currently residing in Hong Kong for work I was going to avoid putting up decorations altogether. He is due back home on the 23rd though and I may have to put in a tiny bit of effort.

    Trying to avoid Christmas music is a real challenge! I can take it for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and that's it. It's only a ploy to get people to buy stuff.

    BTW...I got up extra early and braved the snow yesterday for an estate sale. Aside from the one other vintage clothing collector that always does her "Stand and block" on me I managed to pick up a few pieces I know you'd love.

    That painting of you two is wonderful!

    bisous
    Suzanne

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    1. I didn't know the mister was working in Hong Kong. Have you had a chance to get over and visit him? That must be hard. I bet he won't even notice Xmas decs when he gets home, he'll be far too interested in seeing his gorgeous wife.
      Gah! Those Xmas songs. Never mind encouraging us to spend more, I found something interesting in a charity shop last week but when Stop The Calvary started on the tannoy I abandoned it and ran out of the shop. xxx

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  6. Birthday's should be spent how a person wants, not what others think a birthday "do" means. One year I had kids home from college and I was missing a big cook up, feeding them silly, so I made my own delicious birthday dinner
    (they cleaned up), gifts were books and music, and it was wonderful. The drawing form childhood is gold-you had already formed your future style without knowing it. Sorry-I've been a Christmas crammer, as of course I write what is experienced. Hopefully I'll mix in some topics far from the lights, trees, and themes of Christmas as life even for those of us that celebrate in the traditional ways, still have other parts of life.

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    1. I'm not one for parties and as all my relatives (except my resolutely single brother) are dead there's no family obligations!
      Xmas just isn't my bag just as many aspects of my unchristian, hedonistic life aren't other people's. Vive la difference. xxx

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  7. I'm not looking forward to the endless Christmas carols at airports across the USA this week. One time "Need a Little Christmas" from Mame was the song of the season. About 12 different versions, in every airport. I can't wait

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    1. The forced Xmas airport cheer, I know it well! xxx

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  8. Your hostess gown is utterly amazing. I went to heaps of parties in the 70's and never spotted a hostess clad in anything even remotely resembling that number. Possibly due to the quality of party I attended....... ?! Great post as always thx Vix xx

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    1. Thanks, JP! maybe we need to resurrect 1970s dinner parties, hostess dresses and all! xxx

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  9. As you can see no Christmas thim on my blog either, hahahhhaha
    I love all your presents to bits, especially the selfie painting, lol and keep close to my heart yet another of your memorable phrases:
    I aim to live my life in the here and now, not ticking off stuff in a vain attempt to impress people or validate my existence.
    You are my hero any day
    Much loveeeeeeeeeeee

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    1. I know, an Xmas free zone, that's why I love you. xxx

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  10. Amazing presents and outfit of course, I'd expect no less! Jon's gifts are perfect!! Alas, my blog is probably something to be avoided as I'm doing the daily photos thing for Advent! I understand it is something else for you. As for me, because we will be in South Africa for Christmas, I'm embrwcing it!

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    1. Whatever floats your boat. I loved going away for Xmas to escape all the nonsense although, in Christian Goa, they'll be nativity scenes up in the villages until mid-February! x

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  11. Well done, Jon! Not the least value in this magnificent gift, dear Vix, is knowing that this is what suits your style in the eyes of the man who shares your life. Too many women get sensible slippers from their men, but then too few women wear hostess gowns to watch the telly.

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    1. Thanks, Beth! We've known each other since we were 6 - I'm delighted that he's been paying attention! xxx

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  12. What an interesting and unusual dress that is! Hostess dress? Mmmm, I think I know what sort of hostess they had in mind...it looks gorgeous on you and the feather boa is fantastic. It's lovely to have some of our mum's stuff and your mum was clearly a classy lady with Biba chokers.

    I keep thinking about splashing out on a National Trust membership - I just love nosing around other people's houses - especially if they're posh. I might put it on my birthday list...

    What absolutely brilliant presents and Jon's Egyptian jewellery is stupendous. What a clever and thoughtful present.

    Hope you have a great week.

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    1. My friends know me and my taste in frocks so well!
      You ought to treat yourself to a National Trust membership, there's loads of great woodland and open spaces they own around here. I might even get Jon out walking! xxx

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  13. So with you on the bucket list thing, such a grim idea.

    Love the pendant and cuff, lovely.

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    1. Isn't it just? Why can't people just live instead of trying to impress? xxx

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  14. Haha! When I saw the sketch of you in the "yellow crimp dress with green gloves and wellies" I immediately assumed it was something you had drawn last week...imagine my surprise when I read it was drawn...42 years ago!!!

    Ooooh! That Egyptian pendant and cuff are beautiful! Fit for a queen!! I'm eagerly waiting the blog post when you'all be wearing it!

    Happy thrifting ;)

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    1. Of course, 42 years ago crimplene maxi dresses were the height of fashion!
      In the group photo in my last blog post you can just make out the Egyptian jewellery. i promise to pose in all it's magnificence very soon. xxx

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  15. wow that's a dress I would definitely love to wear, it looks fabulous on you. Your birthday is going full swing, and your pressies look colourful and exciting. Isn't it great packing and planning for a holiday at Christmas?! we are going to be in Mexico. No pressie shopping, no woolly scarves, no stuff your face Christmas dinner (we gave our dinner budget to a charity this year as we will be all inclusive). Hope you have a fabulous holiday too.

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    1. It's so comfy, too! I love the decadence of satin on a Sunday afternoon!
      Mexico? Fabulous! What a lovely idea re the Xmas dinner, too. We were tempted to fly out before Xmas like we always used to but it was hundreds of pounds cheaper to wait and we're lucky not to have to fit in with a job. xxxx

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  16. Look at you, bloody fabulous. Fancy doing a runner disgraceful! ;-)

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    1. Can you believe it? Our photos will be up behind every bar in the Black Country! xxx

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  17. Wow, you look amazing in your birthday dress! What wonderful presents, the painting and notes from when you were 8 are such great gifts from Liz. And Jon did well, didn't he! Can't wait to see you rocking that cuff and necklace. I've got a Christmas post coming up, but don't worry, it's a vintage one (so it should be so bad haha)! Xxx

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    1. Hi Jess! thank you, I was thoroughly spoilt, wasn't I?
      We've got similar tastes so I bet your Xmas themed blog will be right up my street. xxx

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  18. Belated happy birthday Vix and welcome to the NT gang! Have been a member for years and still discovering. Wightwick Manor Wolverhampton oh what a pleasure awaits you both. William Morris and the pre-raphaelites galore.

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    1. Hello Teresa! I'm late to the party with the NT membership. We visited Wightwick four years ago when my American ex-blogger friend Krista and her husband came to stay. It really is a fabulous place (and only up the road). We'll defintely be paying a return visit. xxx

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  19. Ooh the hostess frock is divine...I can imagine Cynthia Payne in something similar. No bloody bucket lists or xmas fever for me either, I'm fed up of hearing about both. Wow! You'd outshine even Nefertiti in the scarab pendant and cuff, what an incredible prezzie. Xxx

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    1. Now there's a career option if the appeal of vintage ever wears off!
      I knew you'd hate bucket lists as much as you do people banging on about Xmas since November 1st! xxx

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  20. Haha, pulling a runner from the restaurant! That's pretty funny, and understandable as you were celebrating something very important!

    Such nice gifts you got. The paintings no Liz did is stunning. You must have been so happy to receive it. I also really like the childhood drawing. Looks like you were planning the outfit you'd wear for your 50th birthday! It must be a real joy still regularly seeing a friend you've had for that long. Lucky you.

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    1. I couldn't believe it, obviously getting forgetful in my advanced years!
      Both pictures are ace, aren't they? Yes, Liz & I have been friends for 44 years. Scary! xxx

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  21. Now THAT is how to dress for relaxing at home!

    A 42 year old drawing from a friend-I'm speechless at how wonderful that it.

    I don't know what's worse-people doing their own bucket lists or ones for their unsuspecting elderly pets.

    Happy Birthday again.

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    1. No.....pet bucket lists? Give me strength!
      Liz & I were obsessed with clothes from the very start, after the anti-fashion sketches we advanced to fashion shows with us as catwalk models and our brothers being ushers. xxx

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  22. What a dress! Much more preferable to pyjamas (the modern ones - I reckon you could rock a pair of 1920s Asian inspired PJs!!). I have a bit of Christmas fatigue myself this year, I have my third Christmas party in 4 days today. I like having a good time, but I don't like people telling me to have a good time!! Did you see the India bits on Planet Earth last night? Utterly enthralling. Not long until your trip! X

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    1. That's a lot of parties! Love those Asian inspired PJs, I remember seeing a fabulous boxed pink pair on Bargain Hunt sell for a pittance and wishing I could have snapped them up.
      I watched Planet Earth on your recommendation, wasn't it incredible? It made me even more excited about our travels. xxx

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  23. Haven't you had the loveliest things for your birthday. The painting of you both is fabulous. We don't need an excuse to dress up, I did my household chores in my sparkly dress and cardi at the weekend just because I wanted to and it was grey and dull outside.
    Had a good day at Stockport yesterday, got some good purchases, then popped over to The vintage emporium at pear mill and bought a Boden skirt (not vintage !) the pattern and colours were to nice to leave. One of those kick yourself ones for not buying, so it had to come home.
    Hope Frank has got over his loss xxxx

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    1. This week is definitely one for wearing blingy gear, it's so grey and gloomy!
      Glad Stockport was good, I haven't seen much mention of it on Facebook. Boden seems a strange thing to find in a vintage emporium but some of their stuff is fab and well worth snapping up if the price is right. xxx

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  24. oh yea - x-mas..... i try to sit it out too. beside of mulled wine - heheh.
    your pressies are totally fab! soooo colorful and thoghtful too. and jon is a treasure! sweet!!
    funny coincidence with that sketch and dress! and how cool that the sketch survived!
    your hostess dress is very big opera! grande!!
    xxxxxx

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    1. I used to make gallons of mulled wine back in the hospitality years and I could never get the smell off my skin, it put me off for life. I'm sticking to lager, beer, wine, gin, bitter......xxx

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  25. So often I find myself reading your blog and almost wanting to shout 'way to go', I totally get your philosophy on life and I always find myself agreeing with it. It's so uplifting 😃. Also the pendant and cuff Jon gave you are beautiful and so perfectly 'you'. Sally xxx

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    1. Yay! Thrilled to read that that you're on my wavelength. Thanks, Sally! xxx

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  26. I can't even imagine you in jogging bottoms, such a bizarre concept! I have only ever worn a tracksuit for actual sport. Once at school, after tennis, we got back too late to change so I had to walk home in my tracksuit, I was beyond mortified and was convinced I was being judged with every step, even though I was carrying a racket.

    Love the hostess dress and that jewellery is beautiful! We went to the Tutankhamen exhibition years ago at the o2, the jewellery was breathtaking xxx

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    1. Sometimes, at a British airport, it seems like Jon & I are the only ones not wearing the hateful things! Apparently they're fashionable now - some people will wear anything the fashion magazines tell them to!
      I used to have a poster of the Tutankhamen exhibition in my student house in the 1980s! x

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  27. Oh what a magnificent look for watching tv or attending the queen's birthday! Your own birthday gifts are special and beautiful, and Jon has indeed outdone himself! Thanks for sharing and I too decline to acknowledge Christmas until about the 23rs (we'll be in NYC and it's OK to sing carols there : > ) xo

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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    1. Thanks, Patti! Yes, it's fine to sing carols in NYC at Xmas. I've been known to do it in India! xxx

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  28. Wow! That is truly the dress for the hostess with the mostess!
    That Egyptian jewelry Jon bought is gorgeous! (All your other pressies are fab too though!)
    Not missing the Xmas hoohaw here in Nepal either but it is the BIG FAT DESI WEDDING season so we're off to par-tay!
    xox

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    1. Yay! Wedding season. I loved your posts from last time. I need to wangle myself an invite so I can wear my bling! x

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  29. I definitely approve of your lounge wear! Jogging bottoms do give me the heebie-jeebies, and they're one of my favourite "ranting" subjects. I love Liz's painting of you both, even if it was based a selfie (another "ranting" subject, I'm afraid) and how sweet of her to have kept those sketches. I'm sure you'd wear yellow plastic wellies if needs must ;-) xxx

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    1. Jogging bottoms and selfies, the work of the devil. I hate it when women I know post pouty close-ups of themselves on Facebook, it's something that can never be unseen!
      Two weks ago I did have a pair of 1970s yellow wellies but Jon told me off for having six pairs cluttering up the cupboard of doom so I donated them to the charity shop! xxx

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  30. Forgot to say - wonderful portrait!

    xxx

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  31. It sounds like you are having a riotous time, you look amazing and I live that jewellery, it's absolutely fantastic. Xxx

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    1. Thanks, Louise! Another birthday day out yesterday. I'll be fed up with going out soon - NOT! xxxx

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  32. I see India Flint's Second Skin...wonderful book!
    You're not often in brown to my knowledge, but what browns...more copper and bronze. Sooo stunning.
    I'm so glad the festivities of your birthday are continuing.
    I had to force myself to think of Christmas for my boys, so half the decs are up, we have our usual tree made of our wire and stick garden sculpture brought inside, and I bought my pressies on line yesterday to make sure of delivery.
    Now to ignore it all again for a while!
    Love the self portrait painting and your girly drawing. Who we really are shows so early in our lives! Fascinating!
    xo Jazzy Jack

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    1. Second Skin is fascinating. I'm looking forward to experimenting with dyeing processes. I just need to find something plain and white - not an easy task when you're a born magpie like me!
      xxx

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  33. You look like a glamorous diva in this dress and boa! And the Egyptian pieces you got from John are simply stunning!

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  34. John knows you so well his choice of gift is perfect , That drawing you did when you wre 8 is amazing , So true of your style today lol , I dont do christmas very early , Its just about started to me xxx

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    1. Jon does know me so well, no generic pressies from him! xxx

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  35. That cuff and pendant are just perfect. Jon has a real eye for jewellery. I think he should be encouraged to give it lots of exercise ;-)

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    1. Good plan, Mim! There's a month of jewellery shopping possibilities coming up very soon. I'll drop a few hints. I get too confused with the choice in India and end up with nothing! x

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  36. Oh, some gorgeous things there. I love the painting and the 42yr old drawing. The jewellery is so lovely, my mum wears a lot of Egyptian style jewellery (along with flicky eyeliner) not bad for someone in her 70s!

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    1. Your Mum sounds super stylish, Tanya! xxx

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  37. Wow, you did very well for your birthday: art, accessories and dresses - all the important stuff! The slinky gown suits your 50 year old self just perfectly.

    Like you, I try to avoid "Christmas stuff" for as long as I can and will likely not be posting anything holiday-themed on my blog, so it will be safe viewing ;)

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    1. Hooray, I knew you wouldn't let me down and conform to an obligatory Xmas themed post! xxx

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  38. The painting is amazing, as are Jon's jewellery buys! You could always blame doing a runner on being a lady of a certain age lol! xx

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    1. Wasn't I spoiled? Yes, they couldn't blame me for forgetting to pay. It's all downhill from 50 ...even more badly behaved and caring even less about it than I did in my youth (ie, my 40s!) xxx

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  39. Your friend Liz painted you and Jon well, I do recall that so called Selfie you shared. I like you do not have a bucket list I have something that sounds similar and starts with an F. Kind of like F@#$ it I think I will do that, buy that, go there, eat that....... 50 is just a number, I am 55 next birthday and I so do not know how to act that age as I have never been it before. Enjoy life like you do and all will be great in your world, that is how I live!!!

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    1. Ha! A F**kit list is much more me! xxx

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  40. That has to be the most glamorous lounging outfit ever! I'm with you on the bucket list thing, and considering I'm fairly organised, I don't make life plans. Jon is well trained on present buying, that jewellery is gorgeous! Looking forward to seeing your next NT visit, Wightwick, Packwood House and Baddesley Clinton are open over Christmas :) Baddesley is our fave, (don't miss the creepy poetic gravestone and the chap buried standing up in the church doorway!)

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    1. Hooray, another bucket list hater. Life is for enjoying!
      Thanks for your suggestions. I've had the book out and am totally confused as to where to go next! xxx

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  41. I love that she gave you a drawing from when you were 8! Perhaps you were mean't to be a fortune teller as you seem to have foretold your own future. Jon picked out two of the most fabulous pieces of jewellery, well done!

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    1. Funnily enough I'm often stopped in the street and asked if I have the gift! xxx

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  42. That brown dress is a beaut! I love it - it looks like it should be from some racy 1970s BBC Regency costume drama. But the best has to be your childhood drawings though. Isn't it wonderful that Liz kept them safe all these years :-D I saw Jon's present to you on FB, and the set is beautful and one of the best pieces of Egyptian Revival I've seen for a long time. Lucky you xxx

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    1. I quite fancied flouncing around a National Trust property in that frock but I might get my membership revoked!
      xxx

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  43. Such a beautiful dress and what a lovely present from Jon too, you lucky lady! xx

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  44. Jogging bottoms are awful, I don't understand why anyone would wear them - don't you want to feel good about yourself? I love the portrait, it's wonderful!

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    1. Aren't they? Sadly they're like a uniform in these parts! xxx

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  45. Jogging bottoms are awful, I don't understand why anyone would wear them - don't you want to feel good about yourself? I love the portrait, it's wonderful!

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