topbar

                       
Showing posts with label dan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dan. Show all posts

Monday, 17 November 2014

Owl Guy: Buying a flat!

Renovation ideas London

As Candy has previously mentioned we are currently at one of those big life landmarks, becoming homeowners. But before we get into all the fun posts about interior decorating I am going to talk about the joy of actually trying to buy a house, or at least our experience. Now a quick disclaimer, this is by no means a generalisation, merely how it went down for us.

We started looking for places about a year ago, it was pretty disheartening initially since we had wanted to try and find something near our flat in South London. However, we quickly realised that London house prices being what they are we had no hope of finding something nice. We started looking at other areas and while much of London is painfully expensive there are lots of nice areas that are much more reasonable. After putting in a few offers on various places and getting outbid we put in an offer on a little place by London City Airport, we really liked it, super cute and a really interesting location (great for Candy’s love of aeroplanes). After quite a nailbiting wait the bank approved our mortgage application and we thought everything was going to work out. Alas upon the bank valuing the property they decided it wasn’t worth as much as we had offered and so they wouldn’t give us as much money as we needed which meant that we couldn’t go ahead with the purchase. We were pretty devastated at the time and did a lot of “grieving”, but in hindsight it seems to have worked out for the best.

After that, getting back into the house hunting game was pretty hard. It is hard to psych yourself up about something after a disappointment like that, but we did and after a few weeks break we started looking again. Around the end of March I went to a viewing in a Victorian terrace conversion flat, it was in pretty bad condition, woodchip wallpaper and artex everywhere and the kitchen ceiling was falling down, but it felt like with a bit (or it turns out, A LOT) of work it could be really nice. I got Candy to come and take a look and she totally agreed (yay!). Anyway, then began negotiations… Now I won’t get into too much detail here but the lease on the flat was short (which in the business means less than 80 years apparently…) and so we agreed that we would buy the flat only if they extended the lease first (because otherwise the bank wouldn’t give us a mortgage… notice a recurring theme). The seller agreed and so we were all set, we got the mortgage approved and were expecting to complete by the end of June, but wait! The lease! It turns out extending a lease is a painfully frustrating legal process... Coupled with all the lawyers going on summer holidays, we didn’t actually get the lease sorted until the end of October! So finally, about 5 months of constant emails and phonecalls we had bought a house!

So now we are in the process of renovating it so we can move in, I won’t give away any of the interior decor, since that will be in other posts, but I will say that watching the transformation is incredible. So watch this space, we are hoping to move in by Christmas and it will be the best present after what has been a completely exhausting year!

"Owl Guy" is a (nearly) monthly series written by my husband Dan, in which he chats about what we've been up to recently!

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Owl Guy: Moving home

elephant and castle

As Candy has recently mentioned we are leaving South London, however our new flat isn’t ready yet so we are bridging the gap by staying with my parents’ for a few months. We’ve spent the last few days moving all of our stuff. As most of you probably know packing up your whole life is a strange experience, on the one hand it is really stressful but there are all the little moments when you find some nostalgic trinket that hasn’t been seen in years. Candy and I have spent lots of time sitting on the floor amidst the mountains of boxes reminiscing about the things we are packing and the fun times we have had in the flat. We have had some great times in our flat and in this part of London, but after 3 years it is time for a change and we are excited to be moving.

We have been living in our flat just the 2 of us for the last 3 years and to be moving back in with my parents is strange. We have spent the last few days trying to fit into our new roles, it is obviously pretty different from when we used to stay here during university holidays. Although it was strange at first it seems to be going really well. There are some other definite advantages to living back at home, at least for a little while. One of the big ones is that we get access to a much larger kitchen! The kitchen in our flat was nice but pretty small but here we will have space to make some slightly more fancy stuff, some of which will probably make it into the blog. Another advantage is that since we are outside of London now I can use my car and so lots of little trips are on the cards!

On the other hand, the internet in this part of the countryside definitely leaves something to be desired! And the commute to London each day for work is going to be hefty. Plus, we will have to work hard to get used to all of this change, and living with other people again.

Couple happies
kissing couples

We are looking forward to the next couple of months and getting our new flat ready, which will be a great adventure! However there is still a part of me that will always miss our little flat in Walworth, it will always be the first flat we had for just the two of us and that makes it special.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Seoul Bakery Review.

Today's blog photos are brought to you by Instagram. That's not to say I've come into the 21st century and become a technology savvy person with an iPhone or anything - I do however have an iPod, and so I thought I'd download the Instagram app to see what the hype was about. It's proved much better than Hipstamatic so far, but the photos aren't as good as from an iPhone 4, so you'll have to bear with me!


Seoul Bakery is located on St. Giles High Street, in London, between Soho and Covent Garden. It is a tiny little place, and I've heard that it isn't uncommon to have to queue for food/seats there. Dan and I love Japanese food (see our attempt to make okonomiyaki) and have always been curious about Korean, so we chose to go at about 2pm on a Saturday. We were incredibly lucky that two people were just leaving when we arrived. There are roughly ten seats in the whole restaurant, which gives it a very intimate atmosphere. At one point, I felt compelled to ask the guys sitting next to me if they minded my blowing my nose... 
The two photos above show the front of the restaurant. This crowded, eclectic aesthetic was continued inside the shop, as you'll see!

I don't know if visitors are encouraged to leave messages, but they certainly DO. All of the walls are covered in notes and post-its, in an array of different languages. Some messages are even recommending dishes from the menu, which I think is sweet. I ordered the Teokbokki, despite having NO idea what it was - I had never experienced any Korean food before, so I figured it didn't really matter WHAT I got. Dan got a dish called Kimchi Chiggae, but I didn't manage to get a picture of it.
We also got some Gimbap, which is essentially Korean Sushi. 



My Teokbokki turned out to be noodles, rice-cakey cylinders, and tofu in a spicy chilli sauce, with some cheese on top, and an egg. I don't really know how else to describe it, but it was very nice, and extremely filling. For the price, it was incredible. Dan loved his dish too, which was a sort of broth, with big lumps of tofu in it. We were full of food and joy by the end of it all!
The service was attentive and prompt, and the whole experience was great. Part of me doesn't want to recommend this restaurant because I want to keep it to myself, but that would be doing it a disservice, and it really was excellent.
If you are ever curious about Korean food as we were, I reckon it's a good place to start, and if you are hungry and skint in central London, give this restaurant a go for sure! I will certainly be going back in the next few weeks, to try more Korean cuisine!

Soon, I'll be devising a 'schedule' for my blog updates, so everything will be regular and predictable! Hurrah! How about looking at other cafe reviews I've done, such as the Blackbird Tearooms in Brighton, or the House Gallery cafe in Camberwell?

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Minty Sailor

Donc Alors...

A couple of weeks back, Dan and I went to Arigato, a Japanese supermarket near Picadilly Circus, to pick up some supplies. We get most of our Japanese ingredients there, and almost always overspend! Recently, we'd seen okonomiyaki on the youtube channel Cooking With Dog and Dan decided that he HAD to make it. At times like these, a trip to Arigato is always mandatory.

On our way home, Dan took some photos of me because the light was nice.

I had been dreaming of minty teal tights for a long while, and finally bought some for my friend Sharon's wedding. They are from H and M, and are slightly too minty for my liking, but they go with the outfit quite well, je pense!

I had my baritone ukulele with me, because I'd been to a rehearsal with Robin Grey, who teaches me the ukulele, when we aren't rehearsing.
This was Dan's finished okonomiyaki. He even prepared the octopus from scratch. It was extremely tasty, and very filling. That one wasn't very big, but we still couldn't finish it! The best way I can describe it is as a sort of Japanese Spanish Omelette/Tortilla... Ours had octopus, bacon, spring onions, and other joyous things, but the joy of okonomiyaki is that you can include almost anything! See also, our Korean food adventure to Seoul Bakery in Central London.

Jumper: Traditional Breton Clothing shop in Vannes
Skirt: Home-made, fabric from FabricLand in Brighton
Tights: H&M in Cambridge
Shoes: Dr. Martens. 

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Exams!

So, it is exams...

And so the only thing I can think about is a list of things I WANT!!!

Here is a list. Hahahaha materialistic...

  • Bonsai Tree! I really want a bonsai tree, because we aren't allowed pets at uni, and a bonsai tree is a bit like a pet because it is small and cute and you have to look after it!
  • iPod Nano. I am so annoyed with my broken silver shuffle. It is really irritating not to be able to choose music, and plus it is all dented and old. But can't decide which colour I like best! Anything but silver or black really.
  • Bento Box. For some reason I have become quietly obsessed with Bento culture, and have been trawling JBox for Bentos that I like. They are so cute, and such fun! All the little accessories are adorable too
  • Holga camera. My photography obsession is getting slightly out of hand, although I failed the 366 project after a measly 12 days... The problem was the day I was working all day, so couldn't take a picture, and then I got really drunk playing the Eurovision drinking game in the evening, and didn't take a picture then either... Fail.
  • Kitten. But that's just not happening until Dan and I leave uni.

My exams are over on Tuesday, but it is Hebrew which is the worst exam in the whole world. I have got Dan a really exciting present for his after Exams treat. When Ben and Emma saw it, they went crazy! Ben turned into Samuel L Jackson, and Emma was like "you are the best girlfriend in the world!!!" I was happy. I am not telling what it is though, in case Dan reads this. Even though he knows what it is really... :)

So far, the exams have been variable. The Old Testament module was okay, although having stood around in the rain for ages waiting for a taxi that never came, to take me to the exam that morning, I was very damp all the way through the exam. Sociology was okay too, but I did talk about Garlic at one point which was wholly irrelevant. Philosophy was crap crap crap. St Anselm of Canterbury can go fuck himself. GARRRR! So just Hebrew to go. i know that Hebrew will drag my grade down mightily. I should be revising now. But apparently I am not. Oh heck.

Things to look forward to after the exams include:
  • Music society Garden party. Am singing at this, and hopefully Tilly can come!!
  • Emmanuel College May ball. My dress is epic, and it should be an awesome night.
  • Trinity Hall June Event. Ooh I need a dress for that! I want some sort of sparkly cocktail dress... Hmm.. OH GOD MATERIALISM!
  • Cheese Party. I am planning to have a cheese party with my new Raclette (my dad got it for €3 at a car boot sale in France), and baked Camembert, and cheese on crackers.
  • Going home with Dan to get all his Warhammer, and having a warhammer painting day with the lads (and Emma). Recently all of my friends of the penis-wielding persuasion have got back into their teenage obsessions with Warhammer. The painting looks really quite fun actually!
  • Making Sushi with Dan. We are a bit Sushi mad at the moment.
  • Going to France to see my Dad with Dan. Hurrah!
Just need to get a job...