Friday, 17 September 2021

It's All Greek To Me!

On Wednesday morning, after my Wii Fit workout & wrapping the eBay sales, we had breakfast and drove over to our second-favourite Black Country town for a bit of charity shopping. We'd been forecast a couple of days of sunshine and heat and I wore my Wyse, London dress I'd found in Barnardos a few weeks ago. 

We picked up a few decent bits and pieces....Two Duke, London western shirts in denim and black canvas, three I Love souvenir teeshirts (Krakow, Amsterdam & Brighton), a 1960s crochet cocktail top, a 1980s mohair cardi, an '80s leather pencil skirt, a 1980s white cotton sundress (with tags still attached), a 1970s St Michael chocolate brown blazer, a Canada top, a 1980s Gina Bacconi silk & sequin top, a Bob Mackie kimono (with tags attached) and a Levi's cowboy shirt.


At £4, Jon couldn't resist snaffling this incredible 1970s psychedelic bedspread from Vantona's Mediterranean Range.  I can see why they were inspired by the Med, the colours remind us of the glorious sunsets. Vantona was established in Lancashire in 1929 and are still producing bedlinen. It'll be perfect for Gilbert.

On the way back we called in on our friends, Lynn and Brendan and their handsome 19-year old cat, Ferdi. After a coffee and a catch-up, we headed home. I spent the afternoon laundering and photographing the morning's finds whilst Jon, buoyed up by an email letting me know that my passport had been despatched, had a look at his holiday clothes and decided that as the shirts he was planning to take were all patterned, he needed plain shorts. I  went online and managed to snaffle two pairs of shorts in a British high street store's end of season sale, reduced by 68% to a tenner.

No, we're not all dressed up with nowhere to go, for the second time in a week we were going out! Jon's wearing second-hand Levi's with an African print cotton shirt and Clarks' Originals in blue cord (both charity shop finds). I'm wearing another of Cheryl's old garments, a 1970s cotton halterneck by California Charmer of Hollywood and used my chazza-shopped Babyliss Pro-styler to create Medusa waves.


As part of Al's birthday present, we were taking them to Kouzina, the Greek restaurant we'd been to for Jon's birthday. We'd booked a table for 7.30pm and they picked us up at just after 7. The staff were delighted to see us again and had gone overboard with the birthday stuff, there were banners, signs and Happy Birthday confetti scattered across the table. They even stuck a sparkler in his baklava! 


The bouzouki soundtrack, delicious home-cooked food and warm welcome from the waiting staff couldn't have felt more Greek, the only difference was the early hour at which we ate (it's rare to eat before 10pm in Greece). We were back at Stonecroft drinking coffee at 9.30.

When I got on my Wii Fit on Thursday morning it announced that it was our 4,300th session together. It looked like turning into another gloriously sunny day and I had a wander up the garden, cutting some sweetpeas and harvesting courgettes and a few strawberries. After breakfast, we sat outside with our coffees. The MyHermes driver arrived with the new shorts and a couple of Gabicci polo shirts from Gregory Isaacs' vintage collection which Lord Jon had found going for a song on eBay (ha!) a couple of days earlier. 


I'd had an email letting me know that my passport was out for delivery so I went on to the Kobo website and treated myself to 6 new ebooks for just under £12 - I can't go anywhere without plenty to read! 


I weeded the cracks in the pavers outside the gate and pulled up the Empress of India nasturtiums which, after months of flowering, had started to look a bit ragged and tatty. I was just sweeping up when a van pulled up and a man asked if I was waiting for a passport. I could have kissed him when he handed it over but restrained myself. He seemed more enamoured with Frank than me, telling him how gorgeous he was.

A blue passport!

Back in the depths of the Spring lockdown, I'd optimistically booked flights to Greece for the Autumn but had to delay them a couple of weeks due to the passport crisis. Now it was all systems go! Whilst Jon sorted out the PLFs (passenger location forms), airport parking and the first three night's accommodation, I checked in online and uploaded the completed PLFs and copies of our vaccination certificates onto our flight booking details. After lunch, I got into practice and lay in the sunshine with my current read.

Tea was half a pizza and a large glass of wine. Later we caught up with two days of The Antiques Roadtrip and Tuesday night's A House Through Time.


On Friday I wrapped the eBay sales and did my final Wii Fit workout of the week. After breakfast, we popped out for a bit of charity shopping although pickings were slim; a 1980s Frank Usher silk and sequin cocktail top (I'm finding a lot of these of late, the chazzas are stuffed with high heels and going out clothes). We also found a vintage handknitted cardi, a leather belt with a ponyskin buckle and a 1960s Kangol cap.

WEARING: Vintage St Michael prairie dress, Toast cowboy boots (eBay), vintage tooled leather belt and 1970s navy wool hat (both charity shop finds)

A few months ago, I'd shared some of our charity shop finds and Kezzie had messaged me, asking if I'd be interested in swapping a vintage Grecian-style dress with a 1980s St Michael cotton prairie dress I'd loved when she posted a photo of her wearing it on her blog. 


Today was the first outing for Kezzie's dress and it was a joy to wear. My hair had been piled up on top of my head since Wednesday night and I was delighted to discover that my Medusa curls had stayed in when I'd undone my top knot. HERE'S Kezzie looking beautiful in the dress I swapped for mine.


After lunch, the sun had finally emerged from behind the clouds so I changed into my gardening gear, started planting the Spring bulbs and swept up the leaves which Jon wheeled up the garden and deposited in the dedicated leaf mould bin he'd made from the old shed. 


We spent a lovely couple of hours pottering about, ably assisted by The Lads.




With the transport secretary due to announce changes to the travel restrictions, we've been on tenterhooks all day. Within the last 15 minutes, we've discovered that, from 4th October, all countries are either green or red (no more amber!) and that the fit to fly test for fully vaccinated passengers returning to England will be scrapped thus saving us £60 (more money to spend on Greek salads and Mythos) - maybe that passport delay happened for a reason!

We've just poured ourselves a large glass of wine to celebrate...chin, chin!


42 comments:

  1. So pleased for you that passport has arrived and that Boris has updated the rules and regs making your trip a green light (we canx our trips for this year due to the uncertainty but have some good ones for next year).. your garden looks incredible. Love that blue felt hat. I have been wearing more of the earings you gave me - must get some pics. Jon has some very stylish shirts lined up for his holidays and you are both going to look stunning as always :)

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    1. I wondered if your trips were going ahead or if you'd postponed them. I was starting to give up hope of leaving these shores this year!
      I'm so happy that you're enjoying your bag of bling! xxx

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  2. Woo hoo, so glad your passport arrived safely, and that you're a "Go!" for travel to Greece! So thrilled for you, Vix!

    I enjoy your thrift shop finds so much - I have also notice a slight up-tick in the fancy-wear sections in some of the shops, although I suspect that this holiday season will bring out the glitzy frocks (I hope so!) at various parties.

    Your outfits are all fabulous, and how wonderful to see both you and Kezzie enjoying your swapped dresses! You look gorgeous in that rich blue. Wonderful that you got out to celebrate your mate's birthday with some yummy Greek food, just building up the anticipation of your trip!

    Have a wonderful weekend, and give the lads (gorgeous Frank, lol - don't let him get a big head from the admirers) a snuggle from me.

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    1. Thanks so much, Sheila! The charity shop rails are groaning under sequins, glitter and lame and my hip twinges just looking at the skyscraper heels on the footwear shelves!
      xxx

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  3. So great you got your passport and will be able to travel to Greece. I'm not surprised Frank stole the show, he is gorgeous...and how cool your friends have a 19 year old cat.
    Great shopping finds. The outfits you and Jon wore to your friend's birthday are very cool. It looks like you celebrated his birthday in style. That Greek place looks great.
    The dress you swaped with Kezzie looks great on you.

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  4. So glad things have eased back for you just at the right time. I'm sure you'll have another great time. So much colour to see there. Arilx

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    1. I'm so relieved, I'd convinced myeslf that it would be the first year since I was 21 when I hadn't left the country! xxx

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  5. Yipee-a passport, mow hope you can travel soon. What afun idea to do a swap.

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  6. Brilliant news that your passport arrived. Cause for celebration indeed! Loving your Mesdusa waves, very pretty. Great they lasted overnight too. My hair won't hold a curl for any length at all, even when the hairdresser does it!! My hair is so long at the moment I tend to keep it plaited and sometimes the 'wiggle' stays in. Big purrs to the kitties. Zxx

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    1. I know! I was tempted to run up and down the garden naked but didn't want to embarrass the cats!
      My hair normally never holds any curl, I reckon that Mark Hill heat protector spray has magical properties! xxx

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  7. I'm SO happy your passport arrived in time! Yay for Grecian adventures! Ah, so nice to see you in the M&S dress- it looks so nice of you- that shade of blue looks so pretty and I love it with the hat! I'm very glad you wanted to swap! I've got to choose a dress to wear for my concert in London tomorrow...maybe I should wear that one!?
    Your hair looks really nice wavy.
    I'm so jealous of your Nasturtiums- none of mine worked out.
    Mmm, that Greek food looked scrummy!

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    1. I'm overjoyed, Jon's been on countdown for Greece for months, I felt awful when I discovered my old passport was out of date!
      I absolutely love your bklue dress. I wonder if you wore your Grecian goddess dress for the concert? xx

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  8. Congrats on everything : ) Seeing the cover of your passport has got me curious - what does it say? What do the chained unicorn and crowned lion represent? Have a smashing trip!

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    1. Hi Elizaeth! The lion on the passport cover symbolises England and the unicorn, Scotland. The lion has been used on the English coat of arms since the reign of Richard the Lionheart (1189 - 1199) and is crowned to represent the monarch. The Unicorn appears on the Scottish coat of arms and is chained as it was regarded as a dangerous beast.
      The coat of arms bears the mottos: Dieu et mon droit (God and my right) and Honi soit qui mal y pense (evil to him who evil thinks). Rather fancy, isn't it?
      Our passport covers were stamped "European Union" and were burgundy until Brexit - now they've reverted bact to their original navy blue. xxx

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  9. hurray - you got a new passport!
    and so very pretty dresses!
    the session at the greek restaurant looks absolutely gorgeous - and your garden too...... the vintage bedspread was made for gilbert.
    chin, chin! xxxxx

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    1. I could have kissed the deliveruy driver hen he brought my passport! Isn't the cover posh? xxx

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  10. Morning Vix! HOORAY I always wait with baited breath for passports to be returned so I could feel the excitement this end and am surprised the deliverer didn't get a kiss ha ha So pleased for you!(Ihave six to deal with as the guys have dual nationality) ugg anyway Al's birthday meal looked fun my last birthday in a Greek restaurant was a similar affair they know how to make a fuss of you love it. You look fab in the Wyse dress and how lovely to do a swap popped over to see Kezzie's dress and yes both are lovely. Ilove your hair with the curls anyway popping out with hubster soon so better say bye to Vix world tell Jon he always looks fab too hugs Shazxx

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    1. Hello, Shaz! Gah! 6 passports? One is bad enough!
      I'm so glad it's back and we can proceed with our plans. I was starting to wake up at night and panicking - I NEVER do that!
      I love my curls. It's lovely having a reason to do my hair rather than plaiting it or sticking a hat on! xxx

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  11. That's fantastic news about your holiday!
    I have My Sister the Serial Killer on my Kindle. I wouldn't be without it for travelling.
    Love your new dress! I think it's the same design as the one you generously gave me a while back xxx

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    1. I love my Kobo. I was really impressed with their suggested reads especially as My Sister The Serial Killer was 99p! xxx

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  12. Great news on the passport Vix! Do y' know...my brother had a 1970s psychedelic bedspread just like the one you found. I wonder if it was Vantora, good old Lancashire mill (He also had bright orange walls and a brown carpet... my parents wondered why he was a hyperactive child :0 hmmmmmmm....) Successful dress swap with Kezzie. How lovely for the staff in the Greek restaurant to make such a fuss. You can't beat a sparkler propped in your dish! Lulu xXx

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    1. Your brother's bedroom decor sounds proper 1970s! xxx

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  13. Yay for the arrival of your long-awaited passport, and wonderful news on the travel restriction being eased. Jon's 1970s psychedelic bedspread is fabulous, I would definitely have picked it up as well. You're both looking fabulous in your going out outfits, and I'm loving the sound - and sight - of the Greek birthday celebrations. Kezzie's dress is stunning on you, how lovely to do a swap! xxx

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    1. I'm so happy to be able to leave these shores for a couple of weeks!
      Isn't the bedspread fun? xxx

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  14. That bedspread will indeed look fabulous in Gilbert.

    A workmate and I were talking about getting fit the other day and we said he needed to start Ring Fit Adventure again - a fitness game on the current Ninty console. He was really impressed when I told him you did Wii Fit every morning.

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    1. It'll be perfect for Gilbert, I think Jon's got an orange radar, he always spots something to match!
      Wii Fit is the best, I love my daily 30 minutes. xxx

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  15. Yay! For your trip to Greece. Finally, something to propery look forward to.
    I'm glad Al enjoyed a wonderful birthday, although having a sparkler stuck in your baklava sounds rather painful ;)

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  16. So glad about your trip. Getting back into Scotland is different. So confusing and more expensive too, I believe. Your blue dress and hat are the perfect match. Have a good week. xxx

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    1. Thank you! We're so excited! Yes, no change to the Scottish travel restrictions - terrible news for any family wanting a sunny escape over half-term. xxx

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  17. Hurrah! The passport drama is over!! The traffic lights have been taken away!!
    QUICK - GET GOING BEFORE THE BUGGERS START FIDDLING AGAIN!!!!!!
    Really, really pleased that you're going to finally get your hols xxx

    We have a similar bed cover that we use clipped up as a door curtain in the kitchen in winter - ours is in groovy turquoise and pea green lol

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    1. Simon Calder says we've got to grab the cahnce while we still can, he reckons travel restrictions might get worse next year (I hope not!)
      Great idea to use your cover as a door curtain, these covers are deliciously thick! xxx

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  18. The Bob Mackie kimono is calling out to me, "Here's the brilliant color you should be wearing this winter over the black tights and top." Ah, well, the venerable men's dressing jackets will have to do.
    The Greek supper is a wonderful segue into your holiday. We have our own Greek restaurant that does the most amazing broasted potatoes! We're all looking forward to your reviews and pix of food -- but never mind the ouzo. (Believe me, a nice German reisling works with Greek food.)

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    1. Isn't that Bob Mackie kimono a beaut? An elderly lady stopped me on the wayto the till and fondled it lovingly, remarking that purple was so rarely seen in clothes these days.
      Interesting about the Reisling (my Dad's favourite). I can't wait to get stuck into some local Greek wine, you can fill a plastic bottle in the supermarkets for a couple of Euros! xxx

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  19. Yahoo! Great news that your passport arrived, and you are ready to go. I'm excited for you and will have to live vicariously through your Greek adventure as apparently I am not going anywhere soon. I did toy with the idea of going to New York for my birthday (it's a big one) this year, but it's just too risky, and the US doesn't recognize AstraZenica as a valid vaccination shot.

    The blue prairie-style dress looks fab on you - an excellent clothing swap.

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    1. That's rubbish that the US doesn't recognise AZ, that means we won't be going any time soon either! xxx

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  20. That 1970's Cotton Halterneck, I LOVE it!

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  21. Ah, that Wyse dress is gorgeous!
    Hurrah for holidays, I bet you can’t wait to get on that plane!
    xx

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Lots of love, Vix