Happy 1st of the month everyone! Have any of you been tricked by an April Fool’s joke today? I was pretty proud this morning as I managed to fool a friend into thinking I’d gone a little crazy and got a Jane Austen tattoo (he normally tricks me, so I was happy for once in my life not to be the gullible one!!). Besides some light hearted tom foolery, here are a few other things to keep you smiling throughout the month:
1/ Head to Kent to have a Japanese-inspired picnic in a cherry orchard.
2/ Celebrate the legacies of two of the greatest British writers: Charlotte Bronte and William Shakespeare. April marks the 200th anniversary of Charlotte Bronte’s birth and the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. I’ve booked tickets to see this production of Romeo & Juliet which sounds amazing; tickets are bound to sell quickly so do check it out! The Hogarth Press have launched a great project, involving well-known writers in retelling some of Shakespeare’s greatest tales. I’m especially looking forward to Tracy Chevalier’s retelling of Othello, set in an American primary school playground in the 1970s (although I still have a while to wait – this isn’t published until next year!). Until then, I’m eager to get my hands on Reader, I Married Him, a compilation of short stories inspired by Jane Eyre that Tracy Chevalier has edited (apparently it comes out in the UK next week on the 7th). Chevalier has also been involved in curating an exhibition on Charlotte at the Bronte Parsonage in Haworth – it’s on until December so I’m rather hoping I’ll be able to get to it somehow! In London, though, there are some free Bronte-dedicated exhibitions to see: both at the National Portrait Gallery and the Sir John Soane’s Museum.
4/ Revitalise your make-up drawer. Spring is always a good time to have a proper declutter, and my make-up bag(s) can get faaaar too crammed. It’s amazing how often I rediscover a favourite make up product that was unintentionally buried for a while at the bottom of the bag.
5/ Plan a trip to Oxford. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to make it this year, but whenever I can I love to visit Oxford in the spring, not only to see the city which looks particularly beautiful with magnolia trees in bloom, but also to attend the Literary Festival.
6/ Take your camera along to Kew Gardens and capture the beautiful magnolia and cherry blossom, as well as the bluebells when they start to appear.
7/ Do something crafty. This tutorial for making a thin silk scarf looks fantastic. Black silk is very chic, but I’d also like to try it using a Liberty print.
9/ Have a friend round for a meal. Having hibernated a bit during the winter, I feel a lot more social come Spring and am looking forward to hosting a small dinner party next week.
10/ Take an evening stroll. Take advantage of the longer, lighter days to go for a walk after supper. I love ambling around London in the evenings, when people are spilling out onto pavements from pubs or dining at tables on the sidewalk.
A few more things I’m looking forward to this month: meeting a lovely friend for lunch at Frenchie; getting together with a reader of Miranda’s Notebook (hi Llinos!); welcoming my Grandmother and her cousin who are arriving from Canada at the end of the month; learning ballroom dancing with a friend; a spa appointment at Battersea Crowne Plaza and seeing Russia and the Arts at the National Portrait Gallery (I’ve also got two friends booked to take round the Vogue 100 exhibition, so I’ll have seen it four times, but that’s fine by me!).
Current Happy List:
// Blogs // It’s hard to budge these blogs from the top of my list, and all the latest posts have just been so good: Coco’s Tea Party, The Elgin Avenue, Ciao Domenica, Cupcakes & Cashmere and Gal Meets Glam. I eagerly look out for every new post from these fantastic ladies!
// TV // Have any of you seen the new TV series The Catch? I was hooked by the pilot and can’t wait for the next episode! Scandal & How To Get Away With Murder producer Shonda Rhimes is behind it, and The Catch looks to be full of the type of sassy female characters that I love to watch.
// Podcasts // Gretchen Rubin’s podcast, Happier, keeps going from strength to strength – I just can’t praise it enough! I’ve also started listening to Dear Sugar, which I find rather fascinating, and I have to admit, it often leaves me with the feeling ‘at least I don’t have that problem!!,’ so in a way it’s oddly comforting. Another fun new-to-me-podcast is Stuff Mom Never Told You, and for bookish sorts, I really like the VINTAGE podcast.
// Little Moments // Having lunch at The Wolseley with the lovely Miho (writer of the fantastic blog Wander to Wonder) the other week; spending a care-free afternoon in London talking about everything and nothing with a best friend yesterday; hearing Tracy Chevalier speak on her new book at a Daunt Books event last night, followed by having the most delicious speculoos tiramisu at Le Pain Quotidien on Marylebone High Street; and getting to interview the wonderful David Herbert about his soon-to-be-launched Bloomsbury ceramics earlier in the week.
How about you? Please fill me in! What are you looking forward to doing in April? What’s making you happy at the moment?