Friday, September 14, 2012

The end of summer


Dear Tamsin,
I just want to start with...
I don't know how this happened, someone stole the summer, and I'm not happy!
I have so much that I've done since I sort of forgot that I blog for the summer!
Once you stop its so hard to start again, but since I start college on Monday, and all my friends are leaving for uni, I thought I better pull my socks up!

I want to hear everything!
Hows life going?- have you been working on a baby girl nursery or anything exciting?

Life has been really good, I can't really complain, other than that I am apparently unemployable because my summer of job hunting has been fruitless, but I'll have enough to be getting on with when I start college anyway, if that goes to plan.

I've had a lot of nights out (probably too many, I'm a bit over it!) day trips, and fun times with friends who are leaving soon; one of my highlights was probably surprising Alex with a trip to London zoo, all attention on him;

In answer to the questions you wrote so long ago;
1.Tenerife was AMAZING. It was a really wonderful experience with amazing friends and I wouldn't have changed a thing about it, we talk about it all the time now still!
2. I 'ate chips (which, we still say to each other about six times a day) came from the fact that our hotel was all inclusive and had a really amazing buffet for every meal, but, with Tenerife being Spanish territory- that I know of- they had almost no vegetarian food, one night there was even bacon in the broccoli!- and so pretty much, every day, I had chips, sometimes with veg food, often not, and so, after day three came "I 'ate chips" and to us, it just never stopped being funny :)
3.Olivia running with the Olympic torch was totally amazing, one of the best days of my life, and we couldn't of had a better experience, London has just had an amazing year, and I'm glad we're here to be a part of it!-

4. everything went okay, I mean, not great, but I'm pretty excited to start a "new chapter"
5. Starting college Monday, nervous, excited, and wanting more time!
6. So far the only thing my grown up bank account has been used for is making ahem, mature and thought out purchases from MAC ;) don't tell!

How has your summer been?
Maddy


Friday, July 20, 2012

Hello again in list form

Dear Maddy,

Did you think I had forgotten you? Not likely! Life has just been busy and full of all sorts of good stuff like:

  • Our trip to Norway (and getting back and recovering from)


  • Being pregnant (not for the faint-hearted)
  • Independence Day celebrations
  • 4th of July parade in Provo.                
  • Installing tile on the floor of approximately one third of our house, with ensuing chaos
  • Mad nesting instincts taking over the entire family as we realize just how little we'll ever get done with two littl'uns running around. 
  • Lots of nesting-induced shopping. 
  • Discovering that we are having a girl!!!  
  • It's a girl!                       
  • My birthday
  • Beginning potty training with Espen (again, not for the faint-hearted) 
  • and all of the everyday cooking, cleaning, toddler chasing, trips to the park, food shopping, baby sitting, Netflix-watching, book reading, nap taking stuff that goes on around here. 
The thrills! 

So, here are the things that I want to hear about from you: 

Paaaaaarty!
  1. Your girls' trip to... Tenerife, was it? Your Facebook photos made it look like ever so much fun.
  2. Explain to me why you 'ate chips? 
  3. Oli's olympic adventures. Has she run with the torch yet? When and where is her big moment? 
  4. How did exams and your art exhibit go? Pictures please! 
  5. When do you start college? 
  6. And now that you have that grown-up bank account, how are you spending your time off? 
Somehow I always seem to end up writing to you on Friday afternoons! This weekend Nick's parents are coming up to help us with some of our projects around the house, and to take care of Espen for us so we can go out to see a play for my birthday. My birthday was on Wednesday, but oddly enough, Utah county was not filled with fun things to do on a weeknight, so we moved our birthday extravaganza to the nearest weekend. We're going to see "Crazy for you" at a local theatre and go out to dinner... somewhere. We went to the Bombay House for my actual birthday, so I'm being well and truly celebrated this year. 

Other weekend plans include my in-laws are also bringing our new living room curtains, for which I am disproportionately excited. The party never ends around here :) Oh, and I am teaching in church on Sunday. Wish me luck! 

Hope you have a fun weekend ahead too!

Love, 

Tamsin

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Dear Globetrotter,

Your almost home from Norway by now!
Tell me everything, I'll assume you had a fantastic time, I want to hear about how your family took your amazing news!
I'm so excited!

I've been so busy! I'm really starting to believe that there are not enough hours in the day!
Your memories are correct, I'm doing "adult" things, such as planning, to open a new bank account, and going out on the town :)

I'm having a lot of fun actually, it's really liberating to loose the seventeen year old's...rules?
I don't know, not a massive amount is even different, my parents were never really too ansy about us acting 18 before we were, but it's definitely nice to do some things that weren't possible without that 18 ID :)

Such as going out in London for Oli's 20th, it was THE BEST NIGHT, so much fun to be able to go out as sisters, with all her friends, and a few of mine too,

Us in the club- she's actually three inches taller than me, but I'm in huge heels!


Not to mention leaving school, which happened on Tuesday, we're not quite done, I'm on study leave until exams and my art exhibition, and then it's Holiday time!


It was a lot of fun, although so far study leave has consisted of me cleaning out the fridge and catching up on blogging!

How was your trip?
Did being laid- back work out? someone described me as being laid back the other day, I laughed, I wish!
I'm hoping to be able to make another trip out of the country this October, fingers crossed! A lot of factors to be sorted out first!
My dad just told me I'm welcome to live at home for the next 30 years, something to really look forward to there!

Looking forward to hearing back!
Maddy 
xxx


Friday, May 4, 2012

Hello friend

Dear Maddy,

I have missed you! How are you?

So much has happened and is about to happen in your life. You're 18 and an adult, for goodness sake!
How is that working for you? Thinking about my own experiences as an 18 year-old, I seem to remember lots of fun and lots of dramas. Highs and lows. The thrills and the horrors of suddenly being a responsible adult. Sound familiar? You'll be out of school in just a few weeks too! Still headed off to Amersham in the autumn, or did something else come along as hoped for?

(Quick break while I go and get a yogurt. ----- OK, that's better).

Espen "playing dishes".


Life over here has been pretty busy lately. Of course you know some of what has been occupying our time! :) On the not-so-fun side, we all got sick, one after the other, which took up what felt like years of our life, and on the much-more-fun side, we are packing up and going to Norway for three weeks on the 15th. So in 11 days!

I'm managing to be a lot more laid-back about things this time. Last year I was so nervous about traveling with Espen, and making sure I had packed everything he could possibly ever need. I had checklists written out weeks in advance. This time I've hardly even thought about what we're going to need. It makes a huge difference that he can now tell us what he wants, and we can explain what's going on to him. Of course, right now the most exciting thing to Espen is that he knows he has a bucket and spade ("Mah shovel, mama!") waiting for him at Granny's house, and so nothing else matters. He has also told me that he is going on a picnic with Granny and Granddad and uncle Jeremy, and they are going to eat carrots. Priorities.

I left my phone (and therefore my go-to camera) in the car, so no new photos I'm afraid. I will however, offer you the above one from a few weeks ago of Espen doing the dishes.

We've been having gorgeous weather here lately, so now that I can hear Espen rummaging around after his nap, we are going to head out into the sunshine. It's Friday, so we are driving into Provo and meeting Nick for dinner. Italian, I think.

Have a lovely weekend!

Tamsin

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Nearly eighteen,

Dear Tamsin,
Over three weeks, my bad,
So, onto other stuff, other than being really ill on and off this whole month I've not done a lot,  lost some weight, and now I'm just waiting to be eighteen!
Can't flippin wait!
so,
#1- I LOVE that top, I would totally wear that, it's cute.

#2-  You were a wild child!- I loved hearing about everything, and I promise, no stretching, I've been talking to my mum about my nose, the only thing holding me back is knowing how it would affect me trying to get a job in my chosen field, otherwise I'm pretty sure I'd be posting a picture of my new piercing here right about now, this is me, being mature :)

I'll only be at school till about 11am on my birthday next Tuesday, or less, so me and my mum are trying to work out how to spend the day, options we've come up with
#1- go to the champagne bar at Harrods
#2- get my/our hair done, which may or may not be coloured?
#3- go shopping
#4- go for lunch and shopping
#5- cinema in the day?
#6- nails done?
It just that at the moment none of those things are really doing it for us, and we may or may not have to be back to pick Alex up by half three, so at this rate we're staying home to watch diagnosis murder.

We had picture day on Tuesday, oh god.
Seriously appalling- And then I had my interview for college, it went really well, I was offered a conditional place, they were lovely, and the facilities are amazing, but, I'm sort of hoping something else will come up to be honest, I don't know.

Our garage has been being rebuilt the past two weeks, it looks a lot smarter, and we're hoping it's less likely to collapse/more secure than the old one, but it does mean we've had constant drilling for weeks!- and it sounds like that's unlikely to end, as I just heard dad talking to a plumber on the landing, about doing the upstairs bathrooms because we've been using a jug as a shower head for nearly a year now, and I think everyone's kind of over it. I also think he's realising he's got too many daughters as he was desperately trying to get more hot water for the boiler.

I don't really have anything to post for this week, I've been gathering a birthday outfit this past week, I got my dress in which I love, and a soft kimono jacket which I loved so much that when I sent some shoes back I ordered the nude one too, because the shoes I bought to go with everything were a bigger, more expensive purchase, that I didn't love, so I think I'll just wear some I already have.
Its so funny that my dress and jacket cost £31.50 in total, and everything that was expensive I sent back.
I think I'll surprise you with my outfit, even though, it's pretty mainstream.

That's all I think I have to tell you,
How's your week been?


Friday, March 2, 2012

Shopping, piercing, and a miserable cold.

Dear Maddy,

I want to see some of these art projects of yours! Pictures please! And how is school? When are you finished again? I swear my brain is like a sieve! It's just a few more months, right? Where did you apply to art college? I have this idea that it's at Amersham & Wycombe College (no idea why). If so, that's totally my neck of the woods! I've been visiting my family in that area all of my life. So, that would be fun :) When do you find out if you got in?

We always did Pancake Day in my family growing up, but it's not traditional here in the US, at least not to my knowledge. Much as I love me some pancakes, I just haven't made a point of celebrating Pancake Day. And now I really want pancakes!

I like the boots! Did you end up getting them? I still haven't bought new shoes yet, my money just keeps finding other things to do with itself! Like buying this top:

Can you see I'm concentrating? :)
I went shopping one night while Nick stayed home with Espen, but I still made the poor man help me choose by sending him photos from the fitting room. I ended up with this top, and the one I'm wearing in the ice cream picture from Espen's birthday in my last post.

But not this one.
Looking a little benevolent. Not sure why.

So, piercings. My initial reaction is to scream "NO! DON"T DO IT!"My somewhat more reflected response would be "only do it in places where you can live with having a scar." I had my nose pierced when I was a teenager, and I have a small scar from it. That one really only looks like a big pore, and you can't really tell unless you're closely studying the side of my nose. I also had the top of my ear pierced, and again, once I decided I didn't like it anymore, it wasn't hard to take out, and has only left a tiny scar in a place where I don't really think about it.

Having said that, the two places I do regret having pierced are my belly button and my eyebrow. I had a cute little pinky scar on my belly button until I got pregnant, when it decided to smear into about a 1 inch mess. Not so cute! And the scar on my eyebrow is still visible, and at this point, always will be. And every time I get my eyebrows waxed, they ask about it and I have to own up to what I thought was a brilliant idea at 17. Sigh. I would give so much to undo that particular choice.

My best advice would be to ask yourself if you'd be OK with having a visible scar in your wedding photos, if you'd be OK with any potential future children pointing to it and asking "what's that, Mummy?" and if you can see yourself as an old lady with a scar. Fortunately, ears aren't as visible as faces, so if you are going to get something pierced, then go with an ear. Just don't stretch anything, OK? There's no going back with that.

OK, soapbox ended.

As I was going to bed last night, I started to notice a little tickle in my throat and a slightly stuffy nose, and this morning I woke up with a full-blown cold. Booh! I don't think I've ever gotten one so quickly before. So here I am, under a blanket in my pajamas, while Espen happily watches Shaun the Sheep and roams free in his pajamas. Nothing like a little parental neglect to brighten your day! The sad thing is that we had a babysitter all lined up so we could go out on a date tonight, and now we're going to have to cancel. Double booh! I am foreseeing a pizza and a movie night instead, which I was about to say is nothing to sneeze at, but I don't think I can really help it right now.

And now it's time to scrounge together some lunch for the aforementioned poor, neglected child.

Have a good week.

Tamsin







Wednesday, February 22, 2012

pancakes and boots,

Dear Tamsin,
You sounded very busy, so I knew you'd get back to me,
Your February sounds insane! I love that you guys went out to celebrate your engagement anniversary!
Things have felt pretty busy round here too, art mostly, a birthday a week, an 18th every and every other weekend, it's fun, expensive and busy!

{I'm also running out of clothes to wear!}

I keep bringing up my birthday with my parents, but since Oli didn't do anything for her 18th (she was in the hospital) I sense that they're not really into it.

By the way every other line I am putting a heated roller into my hair since I'm going to set it in pin curls overnight,

Right, on my list of things to say;
What do you think of these?- my school shoes are falling apart, and I'd prefer to wear leggings under my skirt because tights are literally driving me crazy at the moment, so I need some ankle boots?

I went with my oldest friend Hannah to get her tongue pierced on Monday, sort of loved it, have let my mum know that odds are, I might want my nose pierced, got to think about that one, Anyway, might get my rook done for my birthday, decisions, decisions,

Espen is so utterly gorgeous! He looks so well behaved too!- I love his tent, would happily have a bigger one in my room!-, he is the spit of Nick I think!

Did you guys do pancake day? or is that not a world wide thing?
Some of our tossing,


That's it really, Other than I applied to art college for next year so fingers crossed I get a place.
Have a lovely week!
Maddy xoxo

Friday, February 17, 2012

Birthdays, valentine's day, holidays... you name it.

Dear Maddy,

Oh my! I am such a slacker. I thought I was a few days behind on writing back to you, and now I see it has been more than two weeks! I blame the month: In February I either seem to be a) rushing from one event to the next, or b) curled up in a ball wishing for warmer weather. This week is always a busy one for us with two birthdays (Espen's and my dad's), Norwegian Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, a three-day weekend and the anniversary of our engagement. I honestly don't know anyone else who really celebrates that day, but it gives us a good excuse to beat the Valentine's Day crowds and celebrate early. And then of course we celebrate Valentine's Day as well, so it's basically a annual week long party around here.

We went to the symphony for our engageversary, and heard Simone Lamsma perform Mendelssohn's violin concerto (this, only imagine it being played by a pretty blonde in a floor length evening gown). She was crazy good! We also discovered that she was playing a Stradivarius violin, which was pretty awesome. Neither of us have ever seen or heard one in person before, so that definitely added to the experience.

Valentine's Day was spent at home with a takeout feast from the Bombay House. We ate before Espen's bedtime, so we bribed with a showing of "Cars" and snacks in the living room while we had our candlelit dinner in the kitchen. You do what you have to!

Espen's Valentine's Day (he just likes hats!)
Our Valentine's Day - before the curries showed up. 
We put Espen to bed after dinner, and decided to curl up with a raspberry turnovers and a romantic movie. Things did not turn out as planned! First I broke the oven by trying to bake in it - the new part arrives this weekend. Then the "romantic" movie we picked out turned out to be very good, but not at all romantic or warm and fuzzy. We saw People Will Talk. And here I was thinking that Cary Grant made everything romantic! So we ended up with Ben & Jerry's ice cream and an episode of Hustle instead. Not a bad tradeoff :)

Telling me that you miss seeing Espen on my blog is a dangerous thing, because now you will have to indulge me with a few photos from his birthday yesterday:

Opening presents in his new tent.

A birthday bath with his new boat. (His face just cracks me up!)

A little skeptical (and poorly lit) at dinner. 

Enjoying the toddler playground. 

Everyone needs ice cream on their birthday!

And this one just makes me laugh. 
Today is the first day in a week that we haven't had any plans or commitments to take care of. Espen and I have spent a lot of it relaxing at home, but now I really need to spring into action in a minute. We are headed south to see Nick's parents for the weekend as soon as my art class is over (did I tell you I'm taking an art class? Beginning water colors?). This means that I need to do laundry, dishes and generally wrestle the house into a state of decency before we leave. I hate coming home to a messy house. But, oh, thank goodness for a long weekend!

I am completely jealous that you can just hop on a train and be at the National Gallery, PS. Or anywhere in London. I love the National Gallery, although it is a bit overwhelming. I went there once with a friend and we spent about six hours walking through it. It seriously took that long to just walk past all the paintings. And even after that I left with the feeling that I had just looked at a bazillion Madonnas with Child(ren), and everything else was a bit of a blur. It's nice to be able to go back and visit my favorites though, like the Arnolfini wedding or Holbein's Ambassadors that just blows me away with its crazy anamorphic ways. You just have to see it in person to really make sense of it.

Oh, and having my own car is lovely. It's a Mazda 5, so definitely a bit mumsy, but very comfortable and easy to drive. And it gives me a place to blast 80's music and sing along without shame. Well, at least until Espen gets old enough to be embarrassed.

Have a lovely weekend!

Tamsin


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Waiting for the weekend.

Dear Tamsin,
I am in the whiniest mood, I am tired, I am so tired, and I'm cold.
Glad I got that out there.
I've been so busy, too busy, I like relaxing you know?
I've been to the national gallery today, I hate don't like the national gallery as much as some other galleries, I prefer the architecture to the paintings most days, I mean, they're amazing, but they're not really my style you know?
Anyways, I had a massive hoo-ha with the train people at charring cross, who were so unbelievably rude, even though the situation was 100% their fault, needless to say, I've written a very long email of complaint.

To address a few things;
#1- I totally get it, the shoes, I totally agree, are a matter of personal taste {of which mine can be a bit magpie-  what can I say, I definitely get it from my mother}
#2- The bed with the monster like object under it is in fact, Eve's, mine isn't as gross- and I believe it was a mix of a reindeer teddy and a big teddy bear.
#3- I think I liked dress number one the most too- definitely the style I'm looking for.
#4- Your shoe choices are not killing me softly, not even close, I promise, whilst I am the girl who, generally, would rather wear ballet flats to the woods than trainers- I'm learning, and I think as sensible shoes go, they're pretty nice- In fact, they remind me a lot of these brogues I am coveting {which sadly look like they'll sell out}

Your weekend sounded brilliant!- much better than mine, it was a quiet one {well, medium}
I've got an 18th tomorrow, lessons finish for the day at half ten, then I've got a haircut at half 11- so that'll be a race from town to town, I'm not sure what I'm doing- I pretty much cut most of the length off my hair the week after we met last year, and I've been growing it back since then, It hits my elbows now, I'm having at least an inch off, but honestly, not sure what else, I don't think it'll be very exciting, I think I want really long hippie hair for summer.

{you can see most of my hair here, and alex's monster "basketball hoop" next to me}

Also- I somehow managed to get my dad to surrender me his debit card by just making him a cup of tea a few days back, but the dress I ordered for the party was horrible, so I ordered two more options tonight, with delivery between 6 and 9pm tomorrow, party's at eight, say a little prayer please!

Dad's birthday was good- his parents were visiting for a few days from Bournemouth so it made it more special for him I think- A couple pictures from dinner, all taken by Eve because she's obsessed with my new camera- I'm going to give her my old one once I've taken it on my girls holiday (no way am I taking the new one!).
( I asked  for a kopparbarg cider- they bought me an Aspall in what can only be described as a bowl, it was filled to the brim, my mum even asked Olivia to drink some for me!)



I'll agree that March is springy and lovely because I hope it is, I'll be turning 18 on the 27th! {ridiculously excited, sort of want my parents to thrown me a surprise party, but I don't think they will or that it counts if I have to mention it}

How's your weekend looking?
I miss seeing Espen pictures.
How's it having YOUR OWN CAR!?

Maddy xoxo

Friday, January 27, 2012

This and that

Dear Maddy,


Haha, "those shoes you didn't like"! They're just a lot of shoe, y'know? Leopard print, huge red bows, enormous heels... there's a lot going on. I've got to say, though, you're pulling them off like only you can! :) Although poor Mama Stimpson looks absolutely terrified in that picture. (What is that under your bed?)


While we're on sartorial things, my vote is definitely for dress number 1. Very classic, very pretty with just a little bit of sexy. The other one is pretty too, I just prefer a fuller skirt. And I love the color and print of the first one. 


I'm on a bit of a shoe hunt myself. I just need some closed black shoes that I can wear with jeans and with my beloved winter coat, which I can't show you because they've stopped selling it. I'm maybe thinking these. After seeing your shoe preferences, I'm sure they're killing you softly with their sensible song, but I'm just a girl who (can't stop quoting old songs, it seems) likes her shoes on the flat side and needs to keep her feet warm until spring. I promise I'll find something a bit more fun and feminine then, OK? OK. 


I am SO glad it's the weekend! We're kicking things off with a quiet night of bbq chicken pizza and a movie tonight, and then things will quickly escalate from there. I have a brunch with friends tomorrow morning, then we're having dinner with some other friends on Saturday night. We even got a babysitter! Wooh! Then on Sunday I am teaching a class at church before we head off for another dinner with friends on Sunday night.  And, yes, this does in fact mean that I'm not in charge of cooking anything until Monday! 


Look at ma tulips! 


I absolutely know what you mean about being ready for spring. We have snow on the ground and definitely more to come, but I keep noting with joy in my heart that it's getting dark later and later now. And January will be over in a few days, then we just have to get through February and it will be March! Let's just agree that March is quite springy and lovely, and not just a muddy extension of winter, OK? But look! The tulips on my windowsill are on their way up, which means that spring must be right around the corner, right? Right, guys?



And here's a photo of what Mr. UPS guy brought for me today. Also a hallmark of a good weekend, don't you think? And two more things checked off my Christmas wish list. I just counted, and I believe that puts me halfway there. Lovely :)

And: 
  • Love the glasses! Very Buddy Holly chick :)
  • How was your daddy's birthday?
  • Driver's license? DO IT! I waited far too long to get mine, and still kick myself over the freedom and convenience I missed out on by not doing it sooner.  It's scary at first, because all of a sudden you're driving a flippin' car!!! but you'll get the hang of it soon. I can't wait to hear about your first drive on your own :) 
Until next week!

Tamsin

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Weekends,

Dear Tamsin,
A good week, sort of, a good week,
I've been looking at dresses for leavers Mass all evening, slightly prematurely as it's at the end of May.
So far I like these two (1) and (2),
But I'm sure I'll get something totally different when the time comes, but I like the Midi's- what d'you think?

I'm just so ready for spring this week, even though it just means exams, I feel the same every January.
I want to go out in the evening and it not be dark!
Speaking of Evenings, Me and my besties, were invited a last minute 18th today, but we had planned to go to TGIs since my friend is now the first one of our clan to be driving, which I have decided to actually sort out, if not just so I have an ID when I turn 18 in March.
So, I have no Idea what's going on this weekend, at all.

I've only taken two pictures this week, but this is my favourite, I got those shoes you didn't like- or Oli and Mum got them for me {cutiepie's} anyway, my mum loves them, but to clarify, Olivia is two inches taller than my mum, at 5'11- so those shoes do look quite dangerous. {Trust me to be the flippin' shortest}


And since I wanted you to see my new glasses, here's a rubbish picture I took about 7 minutes ago for you, I hope you like them, because, erm, my lenses are so expensive I'll be wearing them for the next ten years according to my dad.

Speaking of my Dad, it's his birthday tomorrow, and I can hear a mad rush downstairs, because, typically, we've all lost the cards bought for him.
My mum hides things to stop us finding them- Its very common for me to get a birthday present in october.
Anyway, I better get to bed,
Have a lovely day!
Maddy xoxo

Friday, January 20, 2012

All by myself

Dear Maddy,

This week was a weird one. Nick was in Michigan for three days for his work, so Espen and I were on our own for the first time ever. Last time Nick had to travel for work, Espen and I packed up and drove down to Grandma and Grandpa, but this trip was a short one, so we spent it at home.

The first night we met my lovely friend Caren for dinner, and she then came back with us to spend the night. It's been a long time since I had a sleepover! After Espen was in bed we sat up and talked and talked for hours, just like the old college days. Of course, now Caren is a teacher and I have a small child so bedtime came earlier than it used to, but it was still great to just chat and catch up.

A little quality one-on-one time with Mr. Häagen-Dazs.

The next day I decided that I needed a project, so we went on a field trip to the Home Depot and bought some paint for Espen's bathroom. I would show you pictures, but I basically changed it from white to cream, so it doesn't exactly photograph well. It looks really good though, and I am so pleased with the change. No more grubby builder's white! Which means that after 3 years of living here, we now only have our bedroom and bathroom left. Now we just need to commit to a color and go for it. 

When I wasn't Espen-wrangling or painting, I managed to sneak in a little alone time, which I spent with the iPad, some ice-cream and a little girl TV. Specifically HGTV. Even more specifically Sarah Richardson. That woman is brilliant! And why is it that all the best interior designers are Canadian? 

Anyway, I digress. Espen and I did just fine on our own, but I am certainly glad it's not just the two of us all the time. I missed Nick like crazy, and consider him walking through the door last night the highlight of my week. And now I'm looking forward to spending a weekend together, just the three of us. 

Hope your weekend is fun too. Don't party too hard, you'll want those brain cells for your exams! ;)

Tamsin

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

changing things up a bit.

Dear Tamsin,
In answer to your questions,
I have no idea.
Not really- I don't have any plans for when I finish, I might look into college, or maybe a job?
Its stressful I tell ya!
Id love to take a gap year in the next couple years, but being that my bank account has had 50p in it solidly for the last two years, I'd need to make some developments.
If I fail some exams- I don't think I'll stay behind to resit, I'm definitely done with sixth form, the big draw for me is having all my friends there, and as they'll be leaving, I just think I'd be even less motivated.

Over here, you do your GCSE exams at sixteen- in around 9 or ten subjects, then, you may either leave school and get a job, join a sixth form, or go to college where you do more specific courses, such as beauty therapy or plumbing; whereas at sixth form, you study three or four (or two) subjects for two years, an extension of those you took for GCSE, and take exams in all subjects at the end of each two years, and combine the two for your grades.
Make sense?
I don't really know what I want to do next, but ideally, I'd be working within the beauty industry, but who knows, it might end up being Tesco's.
It's been a stressful week round here, but fingers crossed everything will calm down now we're a way back into school.
Things I have done;
........

Made a blind- eg, tucked a sheet into the window at 3am whilst rebelling against the moonlight on my face, it's been working quite well if I say so myself.
I also got another piercing a couple weeks ago too, I love it, I'd been wanting it for flippin years, and decided, it was almost silly not to just get it, mum wasn't too keen, but it's hardly in your face, and, as is my excuse for everything, if Olivia can have tattoos, I can have a new piercing, it works like a charm that one, except when I mention a nose piercing, despite the fact I'll be an adult in just a couple months, that one will not fly.


That is it really- I also got new glasses today, that I can actually see in {if you didn't know, I'm not one of those people who can see with and without them, I am 100% exceptionally short sighted, I wear them in the shower, to put my make up on ect...}
They're really different to the ones I've had, and I'm still getting used to them, but they are pretty much what I wanted, I'll try and post a picture over at my place before the week is out.

What about you? How's it going over there?-
Maddy xoxo

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Cabin fever

Dear Maddy,

As any mother will tell you, nap time is the time to carpe the crap out of your diem and do whatever your little heart desires, whether that be practical or otherwise. Today I'm going the hedonistic route and taking advantage of nap time to curl up on the couch with a blanket, some HGTV and a cinnamon roll. My excuse is that I have a cold and a toddler who is just recovering from his cold, so I need all the relaxation I can get!

Your girls' holiday sounds like fun! I actually never did anything like that, because I was in such a heated rush to move out here to go to school and get started with my life. I think it's a great idea to just relax and celebrate with your friends before you all go your separate ways. Growing up is great, and what you are supposed to do in life, but there is no reason to be rush to get there!

So, I think I need you to explain how sixth form college works for me! We left England before I started school, and my own education has taken place in Norway and the USA, so all I really know is what I've picked up from my English cousins - and you, of course! So you'll be finished with sixth form this summer, right? Unless you fail any exams, in which case you have to re-sit them?

And then what? You mentioned getting a job, any idea what you'd like to do? And would that be in addition to any further education, or are you doing a gap year? Or are you just DONE with school? I bet you're loving all of the questions, right? I guess that I'll always be a mother, even if I'm not old enough to be your mother! :)

Well, I don't really have anything too interesting to tell you. The past week has really been dedicated to taking care of our little sickie, and so we were stuck inside for daaaaaayyyyys. We've watched hours of cartoons, played with Lego, laid miles and miles of train tracks and read huge stacks of books. And gone through lots of tissues ("Mama, nose is broken!"). Yup, we're living the high life here :)

Take care,

Tamsin

Saturday, January 7, 2012

...+

Dear Tamsin,
Wow, am I glad it's the weekend!
I slept in till 1pm today, that's how tired I was!
My art exam went {touchwood} quite well, Art exams are very relaxed, we had nine of us, spread across the massive art classroom, ipods in, sweets/drinks/sandwiches on desks, the occasional comment, two full days, you sit down, you do what-cha gotta do,
If you know what you're doing {thank god I did} they're a pretty relaxing way to end the week!
But there's also an essay to hand in, and a sketchbook full of prepwork to complete, which is tomorrow's plan.
To celebrate I ran into Boots on my way home, and bought a lipstick and the cream eyeshadow I'd been wanting, which wasn't too bad.
I cannot believe you got a car for Christmas!- I've been casually suggesting it would be nice for my parents to get me a vintage mini for my birthday, even though I haven't learnt to drive yet, and they're about as reliable as me getting up on time, that's so not going to happen.

{on our way out for new years eve}

I feel like Christmas was month's ago now, there is so much to look forward to this summer, finishing sixth form, leavers mass, prom, turning eighteen, hopefully getting my drivers licence, maybe moving onto a job, even if I fail,  It's such an exciting time, I really can't wait! {once exams are out of the way}

Also this summer is the hope of a girls holiday, a right of passage in these parts, there is seven of us going, we're trying to book it tonight {but we've tried before, and let me tell you, it's hard!} but there will be pizza and stupidity, so I'm doubtful anything will get booked! We were hoping to go to Kavos, but that's out of the window now.

2012 is treating me pretty well so far, I've nothing to complain about, I'm looking forward to it, I think it'll be a good year!
My rooms still a tip though, and my school shoes are broken, but whatever,

I'm liking this new set up too!-Hungry now,

Have a good weekend!

Maddy xoxo

+p.s- we just booked our girls holiday, Tenerife 2012 baby!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Ramblings on a Tuesday in early January

Dear Maddy,

It's Tuesday afternoon and Nick is back at work after almost two lovely weeks of time off. We took the Christmas tree down last night, and everything feels shockingly back-to-normal. I would say it's almost like it never happened, but the sudden increase in toys all over the living room begs to differ. As does the new car parked outside. Can you believe I got a car for Christmas?!? It felt so much like living in a commercial that I kept half-expecting Nick to slip a diamond necklace around my neck and whisper inane drivel in my ear. Thankfully he refrained - although I'd take the diamonds any day!

 Espen got good at opening presents really quickly. 

We had a really lovely Christmas, though. It was just right balance of family time, alone time, time away and time at home. It was so so so fun to see Espen open his gifts on Christmas morning, but if I had to be completely 100% honest, I'd have to say that my favorite part was running away with Nick for two days of us-time. After a very busy end to the year, that was exactly what we needed.

Big grins = happy Norths. 

Now I am waiting for Espen to wake up so I can take him to the park as promised. We're having a sunny, snowless winter, so we're taking advantage of being able to use the playground. I really wish we could have some decent snow for that little boy to play in, though. He talks about snowmen constantly, but has (somewhat sadly) stopped requesting "Mama, make snow?"

So, how are you surviving 2012 so far? Are you going to be all set for your art exam on Friday? I won't expect to hear back from you until that is all out of the way, but I do hope you post some pictures of what your creations! 

Also, I wanted to say how excited I am to be blogging this way with you this year! I think it suits us and our schedules much, much better. Less guilt, more chatting! 

Take care, xx, 

Tamsin

Monday, January 2, 2012

New year, New topic.

Happy new year!
Remember us!?
We are the first to admit that whilst we had a brilliant first half of 2011 on the blog, after that we really let things slide. Life, families, school and our own Blogs got in the way and we were at a loss as to what to do in 2012, we had two options, cut and run, or change it up.
I think the main motivation for wanting to stick with something on this blog, was to keep up the wonderful friendship Tamsin and I have had, for I'd say a good couple of years now.


Especially now we've met in person and realise, that, in fact, we're both awesome.


So, with a new year we decided to take a new direction in our blog, we've decided to keep things simple, and make it easier for ourselves to keep it up- This year we'll be using the blog to write letters to each other, short and sweet, photo heavy, or long winded, whatever we feel like, Tamsin will go first, and I'll respond when I get a chance, and vice versa, we're hoping it keeps the blog fun and interesting, so we'll see how it goes!
We'd love some feedback as and when, and a happy new year to everyone, may 2012 be awesome.
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