• Cheltenham,  Cotswolds,  Food & Drink,  Lifestyle

    A strong contender for Cheltenham’s best Indian restaurant

    So, you’re just about to get a kitten and puppy. Obviously you’re out of your mind, but should you choose that path, you need a good blowout the night before, right?! (before you’re housebound for months on end!). But where to go? Steph’s been on a rather bland diet recently so we were feeling something packed with flavour, and a curry’s a safe bet for that! Cheltenham’s got no shortage of good Indian restaurants; Prithvi still sticks in my mind- years after our first visit as one of the best I’ve been to. But it was time for us to try somewhere new so we made our way to Mahal,…

  • Uncategorized

    Chapter 3 of our self-build story: Going up

    It’s been over a year since I wrote the last feature on our house build; at the time we were just up to the first floor and things had progressed rapidly. So, did something go horribly wrong, as you might have expected if you’ve ever watched Grand Designs, or has it just been a very busy last 12 months and blogging’s taken a back seat…? Well I’m very pleased to report that it’s the latter of those two option: With the house build, moving in, Christmas, a demanding new job, Covid and a couple of new furry additions, writing for fun sadly hasn’t had much of a look in, but…

  • Art,  Crafts

    Back to school

    If you’ve had much of a look through this blog you might have noticed a few themes, for both Steph and I. A love of food is the most obvious one; when we lived in the center of Bristol that was where most of our expendable income went. Travel is also right up there, although this year has been very travel-light, as we’ve focused on building our new home. If Steph gets her way this will be addressed next year!  The third main theme is a love of making things, whether it be our very hand-made wedding, or trying our hands at a new craft. For me one of the…

  • Food & Drink,  Lifestyle,  Photography,  Portraits of Cheltenham

    A meaty treat

    We’ve recently moved from Bristol to the outskirts of Cheltenham and one of the hardest things about moving away from Bristol has been leaving the thriving food scene behind; we were never short of options for somewhere fantastic to go out for dinner.  So after only a couple of weeks in our new home town we were delighted to get an invite to the opening of a new steak restaurant in Cheltenham’s food and entertainment area- The Brewery Quarter. A really good, well cooked steak (well cooked on a good hot charcoal grill, rather than ‘well done’) is a wonderful thing, but all to often restaurants serve up poor quality,…

  • Cotswolds,  Lifestyle,  Photography,  Travel

    Exploring the Kennet & Avon canal in the laziest way

    Six friends, looking for a short break together; what do you do?! Find a cottage or a lodge, go camping? Last year we stayed on a permanently moored boat which was really nice, so we thought we’d up the ante this time and go with a narrow boat, conveniently less than an hour from our home. Apart from messing about on dinghies and jet-skis, none of us have done any sort of proper boating, but that didn’t seem to phase the boat hire company, so we weren’t overly worried. Before we went we watched a safety video with basic boating guide and details about how to operate a lock, and…

  • Cheltenham,  Cotswolds,  Lifestyle

    Chapter 2 of our self-build story: Out of the ground

    Once we finally got past the planning permission hurdle and out of the ground, things started moving very quickly! Following the end of May bank holiday the team got started on the block work on Tuesday 28th May. Our front entrance! By 30th May we had window surrounds on the ground floor. On Saturday 1st June Steph visited site and had a stretch: Study: Kitchen: The week commencing 3rd June the team finished off the ground floor block work and started on the brick: Up to Thursday 6th June progress was really good, but Friday was a complete washout, and Saturday and most of the next week wasn’t much better;…

  • Lifestyle

    A moment in time

    It can’t have escaped your attention that climate change is a pretty hot topic at the moment. Recently Bristol (and other cities around the UK) were significantly inconvenienced by protesters ‘spreading the message’ that we need to act now. Whilst I saw a few diehards actually on the picket line, the vast majority seemed to just be enjoying a festival in Castle Park. I was away when it started raining but I would’ve been interested to see how many stuck around when the going got tough! If not from someone handing out a flier in the park, where do you go for information about the real big picture, rather than…

  • Bristol,  Cheltenham,  Cotswolds,  Crafts,  Lifestyle,  Photography

    To self build or not to self build

    Bristol’s been a wonderful home for the last 6 years, especially the central spot we have with its easy access to all Bristol has to offer. Living in the middle of one of the most popular cities in the country comes with its compromises though, and the main one is space- both inside and out. So for a while now (nearly 4 years) we’ve been looking for a new home in a slightly more rural setting.  We’ve viewed dozens of houses and with each viewing we honed our view of what’s important to us, seeing features we loved as well as those we’d rather not have. If you had a…

  • Bristol,  Food & Drink

    Pinkmans, Bristol

    Bristol’s got dozens of bakeries, pizza places and coffee shops. If you want a fantastic bakery Harts or Hobbs will see you right. If you want great pizza head along to Bertha’s or Pizzarova. If you want coffee I can’t help you with specifics as I don’t drink the muck, but there’s plenty of coffee shops in town so I’m sure you’ll find somewhere which’ll willingly take your hard-earned money, grind it up, stew it with hot water and give you a cup of bitter liquid. Did I mention I’m not a fan? What Bristol’s been missing until recently now though is somewhere which does all three – breads/bakes, pizza…

  • Art,  Food & Drink,  Photography,  Travel

    Getting the most out of your first NYC trip

    Recently it was Steph’s 30th and to celebrate the start of her 4th decade I knew expectations would be high; a trip to Nando’s and a new top wasn’t going to cut it this time! Steph’s love of travel and exploring makes things a bit easier, but where to go?! It’d felt like a long Winter so a bit of sun was considered, but in the end I decided on a trip to New York. We had a full week out there and packed a heck of a lot in, but I thought rather than give a blow by blow account of our visit, I’d share some of our key…