Category: On Tour

#BEDN ~ Food Glorious Food

Cornwall was an absolute delight when it came to food. I was quite surprised that so many places catered so well for vegetarians, it was really refreshing. Naturally I took advantage of being on holiday & pretty much stuffed my face at every given opportunity! It started on our arrival to our holiday cottage, where we had been left some homemade cake. Perfection!

Homemade cakeWhen eating out, we had to find places that catered for me & Poppy and once again, we were quite surprised to find lots of places that welcomed Poppy with open arms.

Veggie cooked breakfastWe googled dog friendly places to eat, and Trevena Cross Nurseries came up and lo and behold, they also did a veggie cooked breakfast. We chose to eat outside so that when Poppy hit her limit of waiting, she wouldn’t bother too many other people, but she was welcome inside too. When they brought our food out, they brought some water & dog treats for Poppy too! Cute!

Cornish Cream TeaAfter one of our epic walks around the coast path, we needed some refreshment and noticed that The Old Cellars Restaurant offered a Cornish Cream Tea. Once again, Poppy was welcome both inside & out. Now I’ve eaten many a cream tea in my time, but this was the best one I’ve ever eaten! Whether it was the hike, the fresh sea air or the fact that we were in Cornwall, whatever, it was amazing! The thought of it is actually making my mouth water!

Delicious lunchVeggie options for lunch can be hugely disappointing. Cheese sandwich anyone? So when we checked out the menu for The Fat Mackerel and I saw the meal above, I knew I didn’t want to look anywhere else. I love olives & hummus and I wasn’t disappointed with this. The only criticism I have is that I could’ve done with more bread, but that’s just because I’m greedy! Poppy was welcome too though I don’t know welcome she was after she barked at a dog that walked by – Poppy has a surprisingly loud bark!

Homemade soupOn our final night, we ate at Cadgwith Cove Inn. I’m not quite sure why we left it to the last night to eat there, but it was amazing! Not only do they sell great wine & have fishermen singing there every Friday, but Poppy was a big hit & earned lots of dog treats from the barman! It’s safe to say she was pretty happy there. I was too, not only because their delicious carrot & coriander soup changed my view of soup, but because the veggie option on the menu was a vegetarian trio.

Veggie TrioThe Vegetarian Trio consisted of risotto, cannelloni & toasted focaccia and it was delicious. It felt really nice to have a meal out that had some thought to it and not feel like they just kind of did whatever. It’s probably better that we didn’t eat there on our first night, as we wouldn’t have left!

There’s nothing quite like eating great food, especially when you’re on holiday. Why? Those calories don’t count of course!

Poppy on holiday in Cornwall

During the last week of September, Poppy, my OH & I went on our first holiday together to Cadgwith Cove in Cornwall. Cadgwith is an adorable little fishing village on the Lizard & has become somewhere I want to go back to again and again. One of the reasons is because it was really dog friendly, which made Poppy very happy!

Cornish coast

As soon as we arrived at our holiday rental, Little Sandcastle, Poppy made herself at home.

Little Sandcastle

The bed was the same height as the window, which meant perfect viewing for Poppy! She barked at the seagulls, other dogs & passers by. Pretty normal really! But as it’s best to access Cadgwith on foot, it was pretty quiet. This made a nice change for all of us, as at home, we get quite a bit of traffic on our street & Poppy has quite a job of letting us know that there are people about!

One of the best things about the holiday for Poppy was spending time with us, especially morning cuddles, which she enjoyed immensely (as did I!). We wore her out quite a bit with the amount of walking we did, but she loved it.

morning cuddles

On our first full day, we headed out of Cadgwith along the coast path towards the Devil’s Frying Pan. It was slightly steeper than we’re used to in Oxfordshire & gave us all a workout, Poppy included!

sleepy

We walked much further than we intended to & all of us were covered in mud when we returned. Poppy really enjoyed walking along the coastal path, and wasn’t phased by kissing gates or anything! She did get frustrated by our slow & cautious pace, but she took it all in her stride. That being said, Poppy does love a good beach walk, even if she’s not a fan of the sea! There’s still lots to smell and space to run around on – it can be quite tiring!

Over tired

For a brief moment, she was the most southerly dog as we walked along the Lizard Point. She was really patient, posing for photos, which she hates! She hates being still & has started to let us know when she gets fed up by barking her frustrated bark at us! She did get lots & lots of love from locals & tourists alike, however, and we had to explain her weird breeding a lot.

Southerly Dog

One of the major downsides of going during September was that a lot of the beaches still had dog restrictions in place. This was really frustrating as most beaches were empty (The weather wasn’t really suitable!) and sadly, most of the ‘dog friendly’ beaches aren’t as nice as the others. But that didn’t stop us and because the holiday season was drawing to a close, it meant that most of the time, even the dog friendly beaches were quiet. Therefore, we let Poppy off the lead on one or two of the beaches. Needless to say she loved it! She didn’t venture far. We noticed that after she ran for a bit, she would stop & turn to see where we were.

As we couldn’t leave Poppy in the cottage on her own, she came with us everywhere & became really well trained in waiting while we ate our dinner or cream tea. As Poppy doesn’t play with toys, we have to keep her entertained with food. Pizzles are the best for this, as they last longer than most other chews. I was so impressed with the number of dog friendly cafes and restaurants in Cornwall and so many places welcomed her with treats and water.

pub pooch

Walking around the area was really lovely, as there were no squirrels for her to chase or get stressed about. She just explored new places, found new scents and came across new things, like sheep & cows. She wasn’t particularly keen on either, though while she just barked at the sheep, she seemed slightly more perplexed by the cows. After a while it dawned on us, that as we were walking through a field of cows, she was sniffing where they’d walked so could smell their hooves. Poppy chews on cow hooves all the time at home so think this must have had something to do with it!

Rock pool dogPoppy got a little bit braver in the sea at Cadgwith, exploring some of the rock pools. Because Cadgwith is a fishing village, there were loads, and I mean loads, of crab claws all over the cove! Poppy was really interested in these so we had to keep an eye, especially after her suspected allergic reaction to a tuna baguette!

Cadgwith Cove was a fantastic place for our first family holiday. Everything was so easy & relaxed. We will definitely be going back there, which Poppy will be pleased to know, I’m sure!

 

A Crafty Chai at the Cake & Bake Show

On Saturday, thanks to my OH’s sister, Ali, who won me a ticket to the Cake & Bake Show, I headed to Earl’s Court to get my cake on. I’d never been before, so wasn’t sure what to expect, except cake. Lots and lots of cake!

cakeHeading up the escalators, the air was thick with sugar. Having never been to Earl’s Court before I wasn’t quite sure how everything was going to be situated. Boy, it was overwhelming! There were so many stalls and so many people! I wasn’t sure which way to go first. So, naturally, I headed straight to the lady giving out free Cadbury Chocolate Eclairs! Nice!

champers

After having a good look round to try and get my bearings, I spotted a stall that was selling cocktails. Perfect! I opted for a Rose Water Champagne cocktail, which was nice apart from the rose water. (Never really understood the whole flower flavouring thing) While I was enjoying my champers, I managed to do a little bit of celeb spotting. Apologies for the blurry photos below – Taken at a distance, while they were all doing things.

gbbo_winner gbbo apprenticeTop: Last years GBBO winner, John Waite
Middle: James & Cathryn from GBBO 2012 with Wendi James
Bottom: Apprentice runnerup, Luisa Zissman

And cake. There was so much cake. To be honest, it was quite overwhelming. I wanted to buy some cake, but wasn’t sure what to get & because it was really busy, it was quite difficult to take time to look around. Plus, there was a distinct lack of savoury products and not enough free samples in my book so I was starving! If there were samples, they were gone or hidden behind queues of people. I’m not a massive fan of queueing (unless it’s for champagne!) so I gave up on looking for freebies. What I did see was some really amazing cake creations.cake garden cupcakes burlesqueAfter walking around the show for ages, I finally decided what I wanted to buy & take home. I picked some macarons from L’orchidee Boutique Patisserie, cupcakes from Primrose Bakery and cookies from Ms Cupcake. There was an overwhelming choice of excellent cakes, all reasonably priced. And they were delicious, even after surviving a trip across London on the tube!

all the cake cookies primroseThe Red Velvet cupcake I bought from Primrose Bakery was the first one I’ve ever had and I loved it! The chocolate cupcake was really delicious, not too sickly sweet either, despite the very generous amount of icing. (My OH & I went halfsies on the cupcakes!) I was really impressed with the vegan cookies too. I had the double chocolate one and it was awesome, as were the macarons. Exquisite!

If you’re interested in baking, cakes & celeb spotting then make sure you get some tickets for next years show, as it was quite an experience. And who knows which contestants from this years GBBO you’ll see!

Blognix – A Blogger event with a twist

On Saturday, I made my way up to the Custard Factory in Birmingham. My reason? To attend Blognix – A Blogger event with a twist. I’d read about on Rosalilium & decided to go so that I could a) Get blogging tips & inspiration and b) network with other bloggers, as this is something that I am rubbish at!

Custard Factory

I’d never been to the Custard Factory before but I know I’ll be going back as it’s an amazing place. It’s got some great independent shops & cafes, and there was also a vintage fair on, which had some amazing stuff. They’ve got another one in August & I’m very tempted to go back & get some furniture bits.

Blognix had some great speakers – Jen, Emma, Kim, Hazel and Colleen. They spoke on:

  • Working with PR’s
  • Social Media Tips and Techniques
  • Blogging Ethics and Best Practice
  • Photography for Blogging
  • Blog Design

I made pages & pages of notes, which I’ll post about over on my work blog later on this week. The great thing about going to Blognix was learning that there’s always more you can do to your blog design and lots of different ways to reach new readers. Plus it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been blogging or how big or small your readership is, you still have plenty to offer. And it was really inspirational seeing so many women being passionate about what they do. You don’t have to be really geeky or techie to have a great blog. You just need to be passionate about what you write. If you need help, then there are plenty of people out there who can help you. And there’s plenty of support in the blogging community.

There was also a cake competition & a picnic lunch, which gave us bloggers time to get chatting about what we write about. I met some really great people and have added a few more blogs to my Bloglovin‘ list and Twitter feed. All in all, it was a great day & I will definitely go to more blogger events.

Have you been to many blogger events? Which ones do you recommend?