Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Home again, home again jiggity jig....

Hello again!

I went back to the food bank last Tuesday after an eight week break and wore this...

All jewellery charity shopped.

Everything charity shopped. Denim jacket by Dorothy Perkins.

Navy linen trousers, M&S, charity shopped; top bought for 3 euros in Co. Donegal charity shop.

Yellow shoes  bought last summer in charity shop in Donegal for 3.00 euros.

It was good to be back at the Food Bank. Supplies are getting quite low so we're hoping Harvest Festival brings in a big clutch of donations...

Last Wednesday started out as cool and drizzly so I didn't fancy walking with the group. It had rained in the night and I didn't want to be sliding around in mud. I'm a wuss, I know, but the forecast was better for Thursday so I decided to walk on my own on Thursday.

Instead I went for a good old rummage to Great Denham and Kempston.  My daughter asked me to see if I could get her some bowls. I didn't see any. I bought a Gudrun Sjoden tunic top for 3.99; a Cath Kidston spectacle case for 2.99 and some over the door hooks for my kitchen cupboard for 79p. I shall use them to hang up my tea towels and pot holders. All of these were bought in Barnardos and I  also bought a couple of books; one for my friend Hilary as I'll be going to see her sometime in October, I think. I usually try to bring her half a dozen books I think she'll like. She usually does! I also bought some M&S floral jeans for 2.00 in the Keech Hospice shop (reduced rail) which has now opened up in Great Denham; I bought some wool (naughty, naughty me) for 2.00 in the Daycare Hospice shop in Kempston for 2.00.

I don't know if I've been spoilt by charity shop prices in Bedford town and whilst on holiday but both the Keech Hospice shop in Great Denham and the one in Kempston and the Cat's Protection shop had clearly raised their prices. I got lucky with the Gudrun Sjoden top but the average price for a top seemed to be about 6.00! I'm sure it was 3.99 before I went away.

I thought these orange trousers were quite clingy until I saw the photos! Into the charity shop bag they go. As did the jacket; I don't like it anymore.

Everything charity shopped but can't remember where I bought what. I do remember the blue polyester  jacket was 50p from a reduced rail in  a charity shop in Royston or Baldock; I think it was on my first ever visit. Orange shoes; charity shopped last summer in Co. Donegal.

All jewellery charity shopped

I went out walking on my own on Thursday and did over 6 miles. It turned out to be a beautiful day. I'm trying to find a new route for the New Year Ramblers walks programme. I had found a really good walk back in the early part of the summer but it would be too long for the Wednesday walks which are usually about 7 to 7.5 miles long.

Blue again!
I wore this on Friday when I walked with the group from Harrold to Odell and back again - 6.5 miles. I just added walking boots and socks! The blue patterned top is the Gudrun Sjoder one I bought in Barnardos. The Blue kimono, which has a black lining, was bought last year but I can't remember where. The jeans are by M&S and are also charity shopped. Shoes are by Clarks and were charity shopped, too.

All jewellery charity shopped.

I haven't yet swapped over my wardrobe as we continue to have some warm days interspersed with cooler ones but I am wearing layers which helps with the transition. I have been so enjoying the sunny days it makes up for missing them in Ireland.

I haven't stopped wearing a vest for the whole year only on exceptionally hot days. I have always had an occasional reaction to elastic or something in waistbands but in the last couple of years it has got worse, so I find having a vest to tuck into my trousers/jeans/skirt can stop the itching somewhat. Often it's the knicker elastic that triggers it off though and even PJ bottoms have been to known to have me scratching like crazy!

We met these two lovely donkeys on our walk. They both enjoyed the attention and petting. I must remember to put a few carrots in my bag the next time I'm out. You never know who you might meet when you're out walking...

I also did the food shopping on Thursday and popped into Aldi. I only buy Aldi's washing up liquid, face serum and night cream otherwise everything else comes from Lidl and some from Sainsbury's. Anyhow, I must have had perfect timing for Aldi as they had king sized 100% cotton sheets in a bag, on sale for 49p! Bargain! I bought 8. 2 for me, 2 for the daughter, 2 for the ex daughter in law and 2 for eldest grandson.

I bought this hat somewhere before I went on holiday but can't remember where . It was 1.99

It's my daughter's 40th birthday this month. It does make me feel old having a child in their 40s! As part of the (several) celebrations she spent the weekend at Centre Parks with friends and I child minded youngest grandson on Saturday. He had a football match on Saturday morning and I had planned to take him black berrying in the afternoon. He didn't want to go...the lure of a screen was more inviting.


Trousers bought in Leighton Buzzard charity shop for 2.00. Red striped top bought in charity shop in Letterkenny, Co.Donegal for 3 euros.  Shoes, PJ shoes local retail. I bought two tops, a shirt, a pair of jeans and two dresses in total whilst I was away. Quite restrained for me, I thought. OH took a large black plastic bag full of unwanted clothes to the charity shop in the week. I'm trying very hard to stick to my one in, one out maxim.

All jewellery  and scarf charity shopped.

On Sunday OH and I went to a car boot sale. I bought 2 pairs of earrings and a couple of things for the house. It's only held once a month and it's in the grounds of a garden centre so if we need any garden stuff we can pick it up at the same time. Next month will be the final one for this year. There is another boot sale that runs all year round - weather depending, but's a good 12 miles away and sometimes it gets cancelled and you don't find out until you drive up to the site...very frustrating.

Everything charity shopped except the leggings bought in a sale at Store 21 in Rushden - which has since closed down.

All jewellery charity shopped and scarf.

You may remember my hall table which I rescued from a skip on my daughter's estate. I bought the lamp for 1.00 and the wicker basket containing 4 small bottles for flowers, for 50p at the car boot sale. It has a label saying 'Fleurs' but it was back to front in this photo! The lamp is a touch lamp. The jug and basin came from the same car boot sale for 2.50 earlier this year. The books are for my brother and youngest grandson still hasn't taken his word search books home...

The flowers are hibiscus flowers from my hibiscus bush.

After the food bank again on Tuesday morning  (I go every week now) I walked on my own on in the afternoon. It was another beautiful day. I'm leading a walk in a couple of weeks and needed to recce it. The route was drawn up by a walking colleague; it follows the river from the town centre (where a new development and new bridge was completed earlier this year) then still following the river we walk to the marina and on to a couple of villages and return to Bedford. I am walking the route properly with my colleague next week but I wanted an advance check. Needless to say I took a wrong turn and ended up in a nature reserve. I carried on walking hoping I  would find a bridge and cross over the river to the marina side but I ended up in a clearing with nothing but the river ahead of me.

To my shock there was an encampment of men living in tents in the clearing; I saw 5 tents in total. There were clothes hanging in trees and containers of food, and in the middle, a chiminea. It reminded of a less squalid Calais in France where there were huge encampments of refugees. I have no idea who the men were who were living in the encampment I saw but how dreadful that people are reduced to living like this. It's not too bad at the moment as the weather is fine but what happens when the weather turns cold and wet? This is an area of flood meadows and is left under water deliberately to encourage the wildlife. Those poor men...

I spotted this Heron and a Kestrel along the river. Sadly no kingfishers...

I walked with my group on Wednesday. It was an 8 mile walk and involved quite a lot of climbing. I was pretty knackered by the end I can tell you. But there is no rest for the wicked they say; I changed into this when I got back and made my daughter a birthday cake:

Everything charity shopped. Skirt from Next; 1.99 in Red Cross. Animal print top by Tu; 1.00 rail Keech Hospice shop. Can't remember where I got the shoes from, Oxfan, I think but they were also charity shopped.

Library book waiting to go back on the hall table.

All jewellery charity shopped.

I bought this lovely coral jacket in a charity shop in Dublin for 1.00 euro; I washed it and ironed it but it's too small - damn! Another item for the charity shop bag...

In the evening we went to my daughter's and brought presents, cards, flowers and cake.


I went for a rummage on Thursday and bought two items in the Mercy in Action charity shop for 2.00 each. A pair of jeans and a green fringed kimono. This was Thursday's outfit:

Top; French Connection, 3:16 charity shop 3.99; cardigan, Red Cross 1.99; leggings retail as was scarf (Primarni) and pink shoes charity shopped.

Necklace present from OH charity shopped in Kettering.

 All jewellery charity shopped.

On Friday I walked with the group again. We caught the bus from Bedford to Sharnbrook then walked from there to the village of Melchbourne then on to the village of Risely where we caught the bus back to Bedford. 8 miles in total.

Long row of thatched cottages in Melchbourne. It's unusual to see so many thatched cottages together in one row.

Another thatched animal for my collection - a fox seen on this roof in the village of Risely.

I went to see my son on Saturday. All jewellery charity shopped except earrings which I bought at last Sunday's car boot sale for 1.00. 

  Everything charity shopped.

Kimono 2.00; Mercy in Action, top - can't remember; black jeans 3 euros charity shop in Donegal town; shoes 3 euros Killybegs, Co. Donegal.

It's that M&S coat again...7.00; Cat's Protection League. It was was quite nippy on Saturday and I think I may have to get my winter coats and jackets out and put the summer ones away. Boo hoo!


  1. So many awesome outfits! As always, you are the queen of accessorizing. I'm always agog at how much good stuff you find for so cheap, even down to sheets! Lovely walks, lovely countryside, and aw, those dear donkeys.

    Happy 40th to your daughter! My mom is still trying to adjust to having a 50-year-old daughter, hee. A very happy week to you, and wishing you many good walks before the fall rains set in!

  2. Your collection of necklaces is fantastic, I love them all. I just wish the charity shops here had a better selection, as most of it's quite boring and/or tatty. My favourite outfit is the second one, with that fabulous blue and yellow top. Lovely to see the scrumptious green coat again too. I love that row of thatched cottages and, of course, the thatched fox. I keep thinking about those people living in tents in that clearing ... Have a great week, Vronni! xxx

    1. Yes I know what you mean about the necklaces. As I'm trying not to buy more clothes I am focusing more on the jewellery but the pickings are slim at the moment...


  3. Happy Birthday to your lovely daughter!

    It amazes me, how governments justify letting people sleep rough by blaming them for it (drink, bad choices, etc) when they know damn well a stroke of bad luck and that could be any of us. Besides, so what if someone made bad decisions? Once they haven't a roof overhead it hardly matters how they got there-a decent thing to do is alleviate the suffering. In the US we treat our homeless persons as not quite human and it breaks my heart. I hope I never get to the point of averting my eyes.

    Over the door racks are lifesavers in our small house-but watch that they don't scrape off the paint on the door frame each time you open the door. I couldn't understand where the pile of white paint chips in my bathroom were coming from until I happened to look up...

    1. Thanks, Goody.

      I checked my OTD hooks; new kitchen cupboard and all that; but it's quite loose fitting and isn't flaking any paint. Thank goodness.

  4. Happy Birthday to your lovely daughter! I love the family photo.
    Another fab array of outfits. What a shame those orange trousers weren't quite the right fit, I love the print.
    That black disc necklace came from M&S, I bought one for my mum!
    There's a large encampment in Stockport, too. The tents and sleeping bags are provided by a homeless charity as there aren't enough hostel beds to go around. It's horrendous, isn't it? This bloody government needs to hang its head in shame.
    Have a fab week! xxx

    1. I don't think this government is capable of shame, Vix.

      I'm glad I know where the black necklace originally came from - thank you!

  5. A very happy birthday to your daughter!
    Love that yellow & blue top you bought in Donegal!
    All your outfits are amazing!
    I like your style!1 xox

  6. Veronica, your outstanding outfits, one after another graced my inbox. If there is a UK prize for the most fashionable charity shopper, you win. Having my jewelry on display like yours insures daily "driving", right? Your schedule of long distance walking with the added cake baking inspires us all. Seeing your family love, sweet donkeys and thatched everything was a blog bonus! Cheers, Judy @fancified.ca

    1. Thank you, Judy.

      My jewellery is in danger of taking over the bedroom. I need to add a couple of more hooks as some of the necklaces keep falling from an already overloaded one...

  7. what a bunch of lovely outfits!. I love all the kimonos and light cardis that you've layered on your summery outfit, such a great idea!, love all your matching bijouterie!, the purple necklace is fab and all the beads and cute earrings! and your headscarves! gorgeous!
    Love to have a look at your walks, the donkeys and thatched cottages are so fab!.
    And it's always shocking to find that there're people living in tents (or sleeping bags) near your home. At least, many people is trying to help!

    1. Thank you, Monica.

      It would be nice to think people are trying to help the homeless there are some charities in Bedford who do focus on the homeless; but I think it becomes more complicated if you are an immigrant and illegal - which I think the men in the encampment were.


  8. Your outfits are always inspiring - I esp love the long white cotton skirt and the frail looking lace jacket. I have a lot of lovely thrifted clothing too and always think I'm going to dress up (not fancy but styled) and then wear mostly the same tried and true combos every day. Is part of the ability to put together something more unusual or eclectic taking the time when you're not getting dressed for something to check out what goes with what? I always think I'll do that but then don't. I'd like to know if you take time behind the scenes to put things together or if it just happens for you? Also.... how many boxes of seasonal items do you have when you switch up seasons? Inquiring minds.....? I love your blog. Thanks for the pic of your family - that made me happy. xo

    1. Thank you, Karen.

      With regards to outfits I sometimes get inspiration for 'looks' from other bloggers, magazines, the internet, Pinterest, people I see in the street. I want to try wearing tunics over long skirts - a look I saw on 'Advanced Style' so I'll be experimenting with that over the next few months...

      Sometimes, an outfit idea will pop into my head and I'll go and hang the garments up together and see if they work. For example, the orange print trousers and blue jacket combo above was one of these. But once it was on and I saw the photo I didn't think it worked.

      I have to plan my outfit for the next day before I get into bed and usually have it hanging up and ready to go for the following morning. If I don't, it can take me ages to sort an outfit out (too much choice!) and I don't usually have time to waste!

      Sometimes, I look through my wardrobe for inspiration and other times I'll stick with some tried and tested ones. I did at one point write down my outfits but I didn't keep it up. Ideally, I should have a file with photographs of all my 'successful' outfits and just be able to flick through when inspiration is needed. This would be doable as most of my outfit photos are readily available on my laptop - I just need the time...

      I stored one black plastic sackful of summer clothes in the loft including coats and jackets; and the chest at the end of my bed is full of summer clothing.

      Sorry for the lengthy reply!

    2. Thanks for the lengthy reply. I love that you took the time. It's a good tip to hang things up together for a compatability test. Also to plan it out the evening before instead of expecting a light bulb moment in the morning. I also have too much choice! I'll look forward to your tunic over long skirt experiment. I've been dabbling in the lagenlook style this last year but fear I'm too short to pull it off successfully. All those layers and irregular hemlines seem to look more proportioned on tall women. It's all fun nonetheless. And I try to remind myself that it's not the worst thing to have to say, "well, I won't be wearing that again" at the end of the day. xo

  9. Also - we have so many homeless street people here in Vancouver too. It's a real heartache!

  10. I love how you've made that head scarf look your own Vronni. There's something about short hair and your neat facial features that just lend themselves to this kind of headwear - you're rocking it!
    My favourite outfits have to be that cute denim jacket at the start and then the long cream maxi skirt - in fact I bet they'd be great together!

    Wishing you a fab week!
    Anna x

    1. Thank you, Anna.

      I did wear the denim jacket with the white maxi but didn't take a photo...

  11. Wow! Some lovely outfits there. I liked the blue and green top with the yellow necklace best. You have such an eye for bargains but hey you're experiencing the rise in prices too! Yup,tops are at least £3 but now more and more they're £5 and rising. I'm finding that in some charity shops items are now starting at £15! Which is way too high - I mean they are 2nd hand.

    It's so interesting to see your activities too and your lovely family. But,I felt so sad when you wrote about the encampement - but it's important to acknowledge that life is not easy and for some it's very very hard. We need to face this and not turn and walk away. I used to knit for refugees so you've spurred me on to find a community in Brighton that helps refugees - there's sure to be something liek that here. Lovely post - have a good week x

    1. Thanks, Penny!

      I hope you find a community you can support in Brighton; I'd be surprised if you didn't. If you like to know there is always 'Knit for Peace' (just google it). I crocheted three blankets last year and will do more in the future.

  12. Oh so much here that I can't comment on it all without writing my own post on your blog! I really do admire how you pick out print colours for your lovely jewellery. I know you've said you put your outfits together for the week ahead and your forward planning shows in your perfectly colourful outfits. My fave has got to be your violet and pink day, that colour looks perfect for you. I've pretty much switched seasons now but I'm so pleased I held on to one or of white jeans as the weather has been pretty glorious! Hugs, x.

  13. I compromise with beige jeans in the Autumn and Winter, Mary. I feel weird in white jeans in the winter - totally stupid, I know!


Lost earrings, birthday and some sad news.

Hello!  This was me in my walking outfit on Wednesday; plus waterproof coat, scarf and gloves. It was both a wet and cold day.  I'd put ...