Home.

I have been so incredibly irritated at things lately - particularly some things happening at work, which I refuse to delve into here. Suffice it to say that it's left me feeling down, and counting down the hours until I come home and back to my little safe place. That feeling I get when I'm on the bus and on the way home is what is keeping me together; knowing that in just a few minutes, I'll be home.

Home.

I'm still in two minds when it comes to home. For one, home is here. It's where J is; it's where Oscar is, it's where I can relax and switch off and just. stop. thinking. At the moment, that home is our rented little flat in a terrace building in West London, with its beautiful high ceilings and wooden floorboards. Prior to this, home was our apartment near Canary Wharf, with its ground floor (and somewhat pointless) balcony and bathroom that always smelled slightly of mould.

But then, in two weeks time, I am going home. Home, home! To the place where my friends are, where my family is, and where J and I will eventually head back to.

This next two weeks can't go by fast enough. I can't wait to go home.

It's nearly April?

I had a dream last night that I was organising the last few favours from our wedding and it was just around the corner. Ironic really, since we don't even have a date set - so that 'corner' is going to be unknown for a little while longer yet! But it made me think about what I do have going on so far... lots of little bits and pieces that will hopefully come together over the next few months.

Mostly I've been focusing on what I want in terms of inspiraton. Since our engagement last August, I've prowled the internet and bookmarked a whole stack of ideas that I love, and kept a notebook of my own little additions. Unfortunately thanks to the great laptop crash of 2010, I lost my bookmarks - so I'm starting from scratch in that respect. But! I do have quite a lot planned during the next few weeks.

Remember I said I was going back to Sydney? Well, somehow the months have flown past (yay!) and it's nearly Easter... meaning I'm heading back home in just under three weeks exactly! It's only for a 2-week vacation and I've quite literally had to make myself an itinerary just to make sure I fit everything in. The purpose of the visit (aside from catching up with friends & family, of course!) is WEDDING.

I'm on a mission. I want a venue that WOWS me (and preferably has fairy lights) and I want a church that is beautiful and classic and old-fashioned. I want a photographer who is awesome and amazing and can make me into something gorgeous. (I think I've already found him... but just need to meet him first and make sure he doesn't think I'm insane.) I want a DATE. Those are my big things.

So! I have squished in loads of visits to reception venues, all over Sydney. Some in the city, though not many because GOOD LORD it's expensive to get married in the city... and some out of the city. Some in hotels, some in homesteads, some in golf courses - quite literally, a taste of everything. I want to be able to have the options, so that when I walk into the one, I'll know, and the search will be over.

I am so excited, I can't even begin to express it. Squee! Wedding! Organising! Yay! I'll be sure to take lots of pictures and share the planning with you guys along the way...

And speaking of weddings, sending happy wedding day wishes to the lovely Lacey!

Technologically Doomed.

So technology hates me.

My laptop has been dying a long and painful death for the past few months now, every so often freezing up and letting out these horrible beeping noises. Not pleasant for anyone involved, let me tell you. The perks of having a computer literate other half is that I can always count on him to check things out for me.

Sadly, things didn't work out quite that easily.

While we were backing up my laptop onto the external hard drive we've had since we arrived in London, J's foot got tangled in the cords and it fell off the coffee table and onto the floor - and stopped working. As in, totally died, mid transfer. Picture panic. All of our files, all of our photos from the last three years, all of J's coding for work - gone. Luckily most of the bits and pieces we had kept on our laptops, but we then had to fork out cash for a new hard drive.

The next day, J started the reformatting process, and (as I'm sure you've guessed by now) my laptop decided that was the perfect time to move on to computer heaven. OMG. I miss it. I got quite attached to my shiny silver Dell-ilah over the last three years, and being without a laptop at home always makes me realise just how much I take it for granted.

Thank goodness for my iPhone, but still... I cannot wait for my new machine to be delivered, because I am still horrendous at typing on it, even after three months. It has, however, led me back to my Twitter account (add me!) which is a bonus; I'd forgotten all about it.

Fingers crossed my new laptop will come before the weekend - I'll do my best to catch up on the blogging world then!

Lazy Sunday.

It's amazing how much time J and I spend playing around with Oscar, especially on weekends that we are chilling out at home.

Oscar is a constant source of entertainment and has grown up to be quite the talker. It helps having treats around; he goes bananas for them and always has us in stitches.

(He's also a daddy's boy. Can you tell? It's disgusting. Really.)

Something a Little Different.

I was standing in the bedroom this morning putting away laundry and I randomly had a flashback.

I remembered an afternoon spent in Florida in the summer of 2008. My friend Carly and I were on a mission to hunt down some quarters for the washing machine. Our hotel was a regular old budget one in Orlando, and was quite a maze. It had loads of wings of rooms, that all looked the same; it was easy to get lost in it.

Carly and I were on our way to the reception desk, when a freak batch of rain came out of nowhere and quite literally had us drenched. It was humid, so humid, and I remembered Carly and I laughing hysterically as we ran around in the pouring rain trying to find our way. I remembered the front desk staff feeling sorry for us and lending us a couple of spare towels, and I remembered the dozens of frogs that appeared out of nowhere and were croaking up a storm. I remembered laughing until my belly ached.

Why did I remember this today? I have absolutely no idea. But it's funny, because it is one I should probably have written down way back when, before it disappeared from my memory.

I guess that leads into this post. I worry that before I know it, my time in London will be coming to an end and there will be dozens of everyday memories that are lost. So, I want to try something. I want to try capturing a snapshot each day, even on the most boring of days, and try to remember it all.

So let's get sharing, starting with the most recent picture I have - from last night's dinner at Ping Pong. I'm not usually big on yum cha, since I am the world's fussiest eater and hate all things seafoody and veggie, but I had a go and picked some random items off the menu.. and ended up loving it!

My Precious.

I love hearing about engagements. I love reading proposal stories and I love seeing how thought out, or how random and spontaneous, they are. In the midst of my latest quest to learn about all things wedding, I've been trawling through photography websites and I always (always!) end up hunting for the ring shots.

Rings are just so personal, you know? They are so different for everyone - there's no one perfect ring. The important stuff is what goes into the purchasing, creating or handing-down of the ring, and that's why they mean what they mean. But then there's the creation itself: what style, what size, what colour, what cost? For some, it's a whopping two-carat piece of bling. For others, it's a simple gold wedding band. Maybe it's both? Maybe it's neither.

I remember the first ring Jason gave me, as an anniversary present a good few years back. It was a beautiful ring, and one that I still own - a white gold band with a gorgeous little diamond stone. I remember sometimes, on the sly of course, parading around with it on my left hand, trying it on for size and seeing what it felt like to have a ring there. I remember thinking how perfect it was, and wishing that it was an engagement ring.

And more recently in my 'woe! I am not engaged yet' phase, I remember hunting down my future non-existant engagement ring. I found one I liked on the internet and eventually went and checked it out in person. In more than one store. On more than one occasion. In more than one continent. (What? We were in the vicinity of Tiffany & Co on 5th Avenue! How could I not check it out!)

If you're curious, this is the ring I lusted over for a very long time.

I know what you're thinking, right? Bling! High hopes much? But believe it or not, I'm not a big girly girl. I didn't specifically want a ring from that store. I just liked the style, and figured it was a starting point. I saved it to my bookmarks. I may have even dropped the occasional subtle (?) hint every now and again. I think I may have even dragged Jase into the Bond St store here in London, casually hinting that 1-carat would be just fine, thanks.

(Oh my goodness, just typing that makes me feel like such a cow. I had no shame!)

It's not the ring that I'm wearing on my finger right now.

The boy tells me that he went and checked out my dream ring and wasn't that impressed with it in person. He then went on to choose one that he liked, and that he thought I'd like too. I have loads of people asking me how he chose it, and at the end of the day - it was all him. I think that's what I love the most. I love that he knew me well enough to know I'd love the ring, regardless of me never laying eyes on it before.

At the end of the day, whether he proposed to me with my dream ring or with a token gesture, my response would have been exactly the same: something along the lines of 'OH MY GOD! ARE YOU SERIOUS? OH MY GOD. QUICK! PUT IT AWAY!' (We were standing near water, people. I was terrified it was going to fling off my hand and into the murky depths, or something.)

I got my token gesture. I wore my £10 ring with pride while my official ring was resized. For nearly three months, I proudly flashed that hand and shared our happy news.

The rest is history.

My engagement ring is the perfect fit for me - in all senses of the word.






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