September beach day

Apologies if you're waiting to see the next summer jacket installment as promised, but I just wanted to share this beach day before it seemed out of context. September has been a great month for picnics - Steve and I have managed to get off in our boat most weekends to escape to another island for a change of scenery. Last weekend we went to Great Bay on St Martin's. 

We plonked ourselves in the middle of Great Bay Beach and drank in the glorious view which included the ghostly outline of mainland Cornwall in the far distance.

I'd taken three beach outfits with me, not knowing which would be the one to wear depending on the weather. This ornate Ganesha top was a gift from a blogging friend many years ago and yes, surprise, surprise I've never worn it before. I wonder why on earth not as it's orange with sequins and beads and it's lovely and bright and colourful and fabulous and summery and goodness, what's wrong with me sometimes?

Anyway, this seems to be the year for showcasing all of these unseen gems so this is another one for the blog. Underneath is a bikini of sorts. Top from one, bottom from another, but they somehow seem to work. The different colours of trim are the only thing to give it away that they're not a pair.

I do wonder if you'd have noticed that this wasn't all one and the same bikini? I've no idea what make these are as I've had them for years. Every summer I check in with myself as to whether I'll brave the belly-exposing bikini scene again and then I get over it. When I visited my friend Bo in Portugal where she lives I was greatly heartened at the sight of every woman on the beach, regardless of shape, size or age, wearing a bikini. The beach culture there is all about catching some rays and the best way to do that is in a bikini. Lots of suncream and skimpy bikinis was the norm - I like that mindset.

The final variation on my beachwear outfits is this pair of pyjama trousers that I bought in New Zealand. In fact the whole ensemble is very southern hemisphere as the top is from Hong Kong. I totally love these trousers, both for the beach and for slouching around at home over the weekends. They tie at the front, are loose and cool - perfect easy summer wear.

Could this be my favourite beach outfit of all time? I do think so. All I need is a frisbee and  we're talking a perfect day on the beach.

This will be one of those heckling from the sidelines shots. Good old Steve for keeping me in line when I was talking too much, generally bossing him about and being gobby!

And this is the boating outfit - not in the least bit glamorous, but very practical for slipping my sandals off and jumping into the dingy. Well, I say practical, when in fact the shirt tails did end up trailing behind me in the sea at one stage. I suffered damp derriere for most of the day! The gorgeous shirt is heavy cheesecloth, a fabulous vintage find destined for Steve who refused to wear such an outrageous colour. It's now my go-to boating shirt, hurrah!

Bidding farewell to St Martin's. We'll be back again, but maybe not until next year! By next month Steve will be bringing our boat up before the winter storms arrive. 

The shots below are from the previous day, Saturday last weekend, when Fiona and I had done a wetsuit swim, the first one for both of us in a whole year. We swam from the beach below the Ruin Beach Cafe at Raven's Porth along the shoreline past the Blockhouse and Cook's Porth, Cradle Porth, along Rushy Porth finishing at the far end of Pentle Bay. If we were serious wild swimmers one of us would surely have a fancy gadget to measure how far our swim actually was. Sufficient for us was the fact that we swam for 55 minutes and still felt full of energy by the end.

This is us, two joyful, happy bunnies full of gratitude for being able to swim in such beautiful clear water. These are always pinch me moments - how very lucky we feel to live here!

                                                                                          Anna x


Frills and florals

Hello again!

I don't know about you, but it seems to me that August is just rushing past me at a rate of knots. In less than two weeks it'll be September and as so often happens I know I'll feel that summer has flown by without me catching hold of it properly. In that way, life feels just like normal - I know I'm always saying this kind of thing pretty much about now - but in others we're still all floundering about, trying to come to terms with the new normal. At work, I'm coping with the new way of running the Gallery single-handed, although some of my clients don't agree with the rules and restrictions in place. I think this comes from the desire to believe that coming away on holiday equals getting away from COVID too. Unfortunately it doesn't really work like that.

Steve and I wandered off the beaten track on Sunday to take some shots for the blog, ending up here on the walkway leading to the bird hide. There wasn't a bird in sight, apart from me of course!

The outfit of the day comprises of a second-hand linen top from M&S which hasn't been aired previously. It's a lovely tomato red delivering a punch of colour to what was a slightly overcast day. I paired it with these huge swooshy culottes that are a few of years old. I bought them from New Look in the summer sale for £5 and then paid for them to be lined professionally. I bring them out every summer and they always get lots of compliments.

The white leather belt was a charity shop find, as were the silver bangles and silver ring.

The necklace and this ring were also thrift finds. The sunglasses are by Quay Australia.

The wedge sandals are very, very old and were from River Island. They're quite high but the slanted sole at the front means you roll along nicely.

I'll leave you with some shots from our boat trip from Saturday when we went off for a picnic and ended up on Northwethel island. We saw a couple of large bull seals on the way, their massive heads causing ripples as they coasted along. It was lovely to be out on the water on such a perfect day. See you again soon!

Anna x


Carpe diem

Yesterday was most definitely a seize the day kinda day, when all plans for housework, paying of bills and worst of all, some in depth troubleshooting of poorly laptop had to be set aside in favour of a bit of messing about in boats. After a quick gathering together of the basics for a picnic, Steve and I took off in the boat and headed out to find a beach to ourselves. 

The sunshine and that end of summer feeling had brought the locals out, all wanting to enjoy the islands before autumn truly takes hold.

We moored up in the bay at Tean and crossed the narrow neck of land onto a sweep of beach which faced out into the Atlantic affording us the most idyllic view.

Round Island Lighthouse looking very majestic.

We drank in the view which was populated by the occasional boat sailing by.

Never one to miss a photo opportunity, I just happened to have the perfect late summer outfit ready for the moment. (Technical issues however abound currently with both camera and laptop, so apologies for the slightly fuzzy photos!)

Full marks to Steve for his creative eye with the setting for these shots. Low tide isn't always the prettiest to photograph, but the boy done good, don't you think?

Windswept hair and no lipstick has a real back to basics look for me in these shots. My beach dress was a sale purchase last summer from Sainsbury's, sunnies are my ol' faithfuls by Quay, necklace is by Charlie Dodge and bangle is preloved.

And finally, the news is that my modelling debut is on the news stands! The October issue of Woman and Home features adverts for the new "I AM" campaign for JD Williams. I'm thrilled to have made the cut and still can't quite believe it. The full story along with more shots are, of course, going to follow, but I just couldn't keep quiet for any longer.

Thanks go to my son Jamie for lending me his laptop otherwise there might have been a long blogging break while mine is being looked at by the IT doctor. I'm missing some of the technical help that my own laptop offers, so do bear with me if things are not looking quite the same as they usually do.

Wishing you a fab week!

Anna x



I've had a day off today, filled with lots of household chores, blah, blah, blah, but my reward was a jolly jaunt off-island for a picnic and photo shoot at the end of the day. Steve took me to Samson which was deserted and looking lovely as ever on the high tide.

A day off means dressing down for a change. The jeans are from Next, the top is from H&M but is very old, as are the sandals which are so old that I can't read the brand name on the sole (they came from TReds in Truro many moons ago). The bag was a charity shop find last summer.

Rolled up jeans are just right for jumping on and off the boat. I particularly like these as they're high waisted and seem to hold everything in place better than low rise jeans do on me of late. I seem to be suffering from not just muffin tops, but also there are real signs of that softening around the middle aka the dreaded middle aged spread. 

A strange thing seems to be happening to my figure which I suppose I could put down to the big 60. Much as my weight remains more or less the same, there's a definite slackening of skin tone which is not what I signed up for. I know I'm not fat, but I can gather bits of me up in rolls that I never used to have. Sorry, probably too much information!

The view from up here is fab. Rocks, sea and dazzling sunshine.

It's amazing what a little bit of sunshine does for our mood. Just a couple of days ago we had fog and yesterday it was bitterly cold with a strong north east wind ( I was in winter boots and a polo neck) and yet today it could pass for a summer's day. Hurrah!

The decorations on my sandals are cleverly wired so that no matter how long they're packed away every winter, I can easily tweak them back into shape again. The embroidered butterflies and ornamental flowers don't look a bit out of place in the bed of flowers underfoot.

I've lived on the Isles of Scilly for 40 years and this is the first time I've been right up on the top of Samson. The view is stunning and you can see all of the other islands from here.

And here's my photographer, boatman and picnic companion. Thanks Steve for making this happen!
Anna x

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