Saturday, 30 April 2011

Congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Today was one of the most memorable days of my life.  I witnessed a future King's wedding.  I may have only witnessed it on the television in my front room but still, I saw every moment with my own eyes, even when I forced myself not to cry!

Prince William of Wales married Catherine Middleton.  Just hours before the wedding, the Queen gave Prince William a dukedom, which would allow Catherine to have her own title, otherwise she would have just been known as Princess William of Wales.  However now that the Queen has given William his Dukedom, Catherine can now be known as the Duchess of Cambridge.

The wedding went all according to plan and even the sunshine stayed out, despite what weather reporters had predicted.  Prince William looked ever so handsome in his regiment regalia as he arrived with his brother and best man Prince Harry, also dressed in his regiment's regalia.

Crowds filled London, there was estimated to be nearly a million people gathered in the capital today to try and catch a glimpse of the royal couple.  They were also there to try and catch a glimpse of THE dress.  I had visioned her to be in quite a long fitting gown to accompany her long slim figure.  I also imagined her train wouldn't be too long as she wouldn't want to be too similar to previous royal brides.  Princess Diana set the record with a 23 metre long train.

Catherine arrived with her father, on time, looking a little nervous, as would any bride on her big day.  She gripped her father's hand tightly all the way up to the altar in Westminster Abbey where she stood beside Prince William.  The most beautiful moment of all was when you could see William say to Catherine 'You look beautiful'.  Catherine's dress was designed by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen.  It was a mixture of both the present fashion and previous.  The top have was a lace bodice with lace sleeves with intricate buttons on the wrists and down the back.  The skirt section was either made of silk or taffeta and was embroidered with flowers, a mixture of daffodils; thistles; roses and shamrocks to symbolize each nation of Great Britain.  The long veil was held in place by a halo tiara, loaned by the Queen.  The Queen mother presented this tiara to the Queen on her 18th birthday.  Catherine's parents bought her earrings especially for the special day.


As the couple said their vows, there was tension as everyone listened carefully to see if the vows were said correctly, especially with William's long name, William Arthur Philip Louis.  Both of the vows were correct so it was left to William to place the ring on Catherine's finger.  It was a tight fight but after a struggle William managed to put it on Catherine's finger.  After signing the marriage records they emerged from the abbey as husband and wife, Duke and Duchess.


All that was left for now was to head to Buckingham Palace in a beautiful open top horse drawn carriage for their wedding lunch.  Not forgetting the balcony appearance and the long awaited kiss.  After making their way up the mall and into Buckingham Palace, the crowd cheered and waved with affection.  They were shortly followed by other members of the Royal family.  After having the official wedding photographs taken in Buckingham palace with the Royal family they appeared on the balcony and kissed.  After a short while you could see William say 'One more kiss' so they did and the crowd roared!  Shortly followed by William saying to Catherine 'That's it, no more.'.  Tradition is to see the royal couple kiss once on the balcony after their wedding, not twice!  This was definitely a privilege and wonderful sight indeed.


After the balcony appearance, the couple headed back inside Buckingham Palace to have their Wedding lunch, hosted to 600 people.  The couple had two wedding cakes, one official and more traditional 8 tier iced cake, the other a request from William as it is apparently his favourite - a chocolate McVitie's cake!





Tonight, Prince Charles is hosting the couple's evening party, where Prince Harry has been rumored to have ordered bacon sandwiches for the party goers at 5 am for those who wish to party all night!  This is also where Prince Harry shall say his Best Man speech.  Eyes were on Clarence house once again this evening to see what gown Catherine had decided to wear as they left for Buckingham Palace. (After having left Buckingham Palace for Clarence House earlier this afternoon to prepare for the party).


Catherine had decided to wear a gown from the same designer, Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen, a strapless white ball gown with a diamant√© waist and accompanying cardigan.  


All in all, today has been the most wonderful day, many a time I have had to hold back my tears.  The first time I have ever seen a future monarch's wedding day and it shall definitely be a day I will never forget.  The couple looked as if they had the best day of their lives - rightly so.  They look beautiful and relaxed with each other.  I truly believe that this is a marriage that will definitely last.






Monday, 25 April 2011

Happy Easter!

Firstly, I must start by explaining that yesterday was St George's day, I had such a busy day at work that I completely forgot!  I feel so bad about forgetting!  So here's for yesterday...


St George was a Roman Soldier from Syria and a Priest in the Guard of Diocletian.  There are many stories that state that St George encountered a Dragon and killed it.  However, one story that is definitely known to be true is that St George was a strong Christian believer and whilst he served as a soldier in the army.  During his time in the army, his leader Diocletian, demanded that every Christian soldier should be arrested.  St George objected to this and even visited Diocletian to declare his love to Jesus Christ.  Diocletian was said to be deeply upset by this as St George was one of his best soldiers, however rules are rules and Diocletian ordered for St George's execution.  He was executed by decapitation on April 23rd 303 AD.  It is due to the fact that he stood up to Diocletian and declared his faith that after his death, Christians honoured him by making him the patron saint of England.  The England flag is otherwise known as St George's cross.


Today it was Easter Sunday!  One of my favourite days of the year aside from Christmas day.  Jesus is said to have risen from the dead on this day.  Easter also marks the end of Lent which begins on Ash Wednesday (as previously explained in an earlier post).  In the religious community, Easter is a traditional time for people to become baptised.  Also there is a traditional Sunday morning mass at church.  However in the non - religious communities, Easter tends to be the celebration of giving chocolate eggs to loved ones and taking part in easter egg hunts!  


Today my parents hid mini chocolate eggs around the house for me and my brother to find along with some cryptic clues!  We managed to find them all after a long while!  We also exchanged chocolate easter eggs and my Mum and Dad gave me a Lindt chocolate bunny - delicious!  I also made a Simnel cake today which is traditionally made at easter time as it is tradition to cover the cake in marzipan and place 12 marzipan balls around the top of the cake, these are supposed to represents Jesus' 12 apostles.  However no one in my family likes marzipan so I just made the fruit cake!  It contains raisins, sultanas, glace cherries, mixed peel and walnuts.  It came out rather well even if I do say so myself. 



Saturday, 23 April 2011

Good Friday

Today is Good Friday in many countries across the world.  This also means that it is a public holiday - the first of many across the next two weeks.  Good Friday is primarily a Christian holiday, this is due to Christians commemorating the day of which Jesus Christ was crucified.  Jesus' crucifixion is thought to have occurred in the year AD 33.  Catholics also see this day as a day for fasting.

In the non religious world (for example - mine).  Good Friday is the day when people get to eat hot cross buns for breakfast (I don't however as i'd rather eat my cereal!).  Hot cross buns are a simple bread bun with a white dough cross on top which is meant to represent the cross of which Jesus was crucified.  They are delicious!


Unfortunately I have been at work all day so I have been unable to eat any hot cross buns at all today.  However they are now made all year round (this is only recent within the past 2 years) so I have already eaten a few this year.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

A Productive Day

Today has been a very productive day, so much so that I'm exhausted.  I haven't managed to have a lie in since last week!  Every day i've had off of work so far i've had to get up early!  So tired.

Yesterday was Dad's birthday but unfortunately he had to work so we didn't really do anything, today is Mum's birthday and I had the day off so I took her out for lunch at Chew Valley Lake.  We had a lovely time, eating our lunch with a nice view and then feeding the ducks afterwards, I really enjoyed it.  We all went to Bella Italia in the evening too (Mum, Dad, Thomas {brother} and me).  I'm so full up now.  I've had an enjoyable day though.

Today is also mine and Thomas's 6 month anniversary!  I can't believe we've now been together for 6 months already, I really have no idea where the time has gone.  It really seems to have flown by this year.  This also means that we've now known each other exactly a year yesterday too, time really does fly.  Especially with thinking in 6 months time, i'll be moving to Norway.

After watching my boyfriend catalogue his huge DVD collection online using a profiling software, I decided to search for a book version as books are more my thing.  Low and behold I found one!  It also happens to be free, which is useful.  It allows you to catalogue your books using the title/author/ISBN code.  You can also state whether you plan to read it, you are reading or you've read it.  Also whether you've loaned the book to a friend.  I really love it so far.  It also allows you to create a widget to place on your blog, as you may now notice has appeared at the top right of my blog.  I've added a small selection of the books I own already but hope to add a few more over the coming days.

Back to work tomorrow, I will be working up until Monday, hopefully Tuesday I can have my first lie in since 2 weeks ago.  I definitely need one.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Five Minute's Peace

After 4 days of hectic work back at Avon Valley Cafe, I've finally got a day off tomorrow.  I've really enjoyed being back at the cafe, however its really hard work.  There's not a minute's peace and little kids are running round screaming and playing the whole day, not to mention the fussy parents that insist on having their cheese and beans in separate pots with their baked potatoes.

Tomorrow I'm going to visit my Grandma for the first time since the end of February when my boyfriend was in England, I'm really looking forward to it, i've missed her quite a lot recently.  I also plan to wash my car as the track down to Avon Valley is extremely dirty.  As well as go through my huge pile of ironing!

It feels really amazing to not worry about uni work anymore.  However it also feels like i've forgotten something, as I'm not used to not having to think about uni anymore, I feel like I should be stressed and writing an essay or something, I'm not used to having my own time back to do what I want!  I guess I better get used to it!

8 more weeks to go until I jet off to Norway to visit Thomas.  I really can't wait!  I'm actually really excited about the flights this time (more than normal anyway)  I'm going to be flying with British Airways this time, they give you free food and drink on the flight!  Plus apparently they have screens so that you can see the plane's position on it's journey, I love knowing that, not all Norwegian Air planes have screens so I'm quite often unsure of where I am until I see the mass of trees that's Norway in the distance - a sight that I love dearly.

Hopefully tomorrow I can wind down a bit from my last few busy and hectic days, fingers crossed I'm not working both Saturday and Sunday this week, then I can spend some quality time with my family for once.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Finally!

Yesterday I finally finished writing my dissertation!  I never thought this day would come!  It feels like a great weight has been taken off of my shoulders.  That was the last piece of Uni work that I have to do too.  So that means technically...i've finished Uni!  It feels so amazing!  I can now just get on with my life.

I started work back at the cafe at Avon Valley Country Park today.  Despite the hassle that I get from the fussy customers, I like being there.  The scenery is really nice and my boss is just like my friend,  of course a few of the people I'm a bit unsure of how to be around them but hey, you can't get on with everyone.

Only 8 weeks to go until I see my boyfriend again now too, I really can't wait.  I miss him so much.  This last week of being back at home though has actually flown by, I think it's because I enjoy being here much more than being stuck in Southampton, so hopefully the next 8 weeks will go by as quickly as this one has.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Welcome Home!

Yesterday I finally came home for the Easter holidays!  Apologies for not writing much within the past few weeks as I have been quite busy with attempting to finish my dissertation before Easter.  I have managed to finish my 3rd and final chapter and I am now very close to finishing my conclusion, I hope to finish it tomorrow and to go through with a final edit.

Today is mother's day in England.  I bought my mum her favorite chocolates and some flowers from both me and my brother.  I also cooked her a roast chicken dinner with upside down pudding for dessert!  It was delicious, even if I say so myself.  I'm stuffed!

I am so glad to finally be home, however I am not so glad about the amount of unpacking I have left to do!  I can't believe I have so much stuff!  I literally had to force my clothes back inside my wardrobe, I'm so glad my boyfriend took my jumpers back to Norway with him, there's no way they'd fit in my wardrobe now, I've no idea how I fit them in there in December!

I really miss Norway at the moment, I miss my boyfriend even more.  We've hardly had any chance to speak this weekend due to me moving back home for the holidays and him visiting his family.  Just sat here waiting for him to come home now, I really can't wait to hear his voice again.  I really do miss him.

Now I'm home for the Easter holidays hopefully i'll have more of a chance to write on here as work don't need me until next weekend.  I've started playing the original Mass Effect on the Xbox 360, so far so good!  I shall keep you updated.