Thanks for checking this out...

Ta muchly for visiting. Here you will find musings, ramblings and a few statements of fact. They say women can have it all, motherhood, careers and crazy social lives. But what if we don't want it all? What if we want some of it sometimes and other bits not so often? Here I'll mix and match as the whims and energy levels take me. Your tuppence worth is always welcome!

The mask...

The mask...
Life is for loving and living no matter what it involves...

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Queen for a night but a lifetime to enjoy it...

Sometimes they say you should be careful what you wish for because when you get it you find that is isn't what you wanted at all. But I say wish away, wish on a star, a rainbow and at every wishing well you find. One simple wish for a night of grown up decadence in a castle came true thanks to the National Trust and it was all I'd hoped for (minus a couple of braziers as it was quite nippy after dark!) with not one ounce of disappointment or regret.

Many moons ago I visited Bodiam Castle and saw instantly its potential for a party venue, ever since each and every visit has seen me embellish the dream, polishing my plan to a fine sheen. It was always a lottery win away...

Then I won - not the lottery but the Great British Day Out competition run by the National Trust. As soon as I saw it on facebook I knew exactly what I would enter; my Bodiam Ball. It seemed a long shot, but I put the idea out there and let the votes fall where they may. I'll be forever grateful that the votes landed my idea in the top 20 that went before the judges. And I still can't believe my luck that the judges selected Bodiam Ball as the winner.

What a night they delivered! I truly felt like a queen from the moment we set foot on the path round the moat. Big tall hubby and I led our friends towards the castle entrance, where an owl and a falcon waited (on the arms of keepers) to lead us up the bridge over the moat. As we approached the castle doors they magically swung open to reveal masked waiters bearing trays of delicious fizz. That was the moment the dream felt like it was becoming a reality; that unique privilege of the castle opening up after hours just for me. The bird of prey demonstration really felt right within the 600 year old walls and who knew that a vulture was so cute? Blue eyes and a blush! But it was Winston the owl that stole everyone's hearts and he was as light as a feather (no pun intended) as he landed on my leather gloved arm. It isn't every Wednesday night a girl gets to stroke an owl.

Positioning the marquee, the location for our scrumptious three course meal, facing the castle was genius as we got to watch the sun sink behind its turrets. As dusk faded torches burst into flame around the moat, sending flickering light up the ancient walls. George, who has managed Bodiam for many years regaled us with tales of what had gone on in years gone by and it turns out the castle was always intended to be a place of fun and making merry. So that is what we did.

Heading back to the castle, mist hovered as if by request over the torch lit moat and it was truly a magical sight. But to be fair Bodiam is a magical castle at any time of day and you don't need to host a ball there to experience it. Inside The Zoltans were already playing their own take on jazz/swing classics and the up lit walls danced to their tune; it was impossible not to join in and so the twenty of us boogied on the lawn that had once been the centre of the castle with the stars smiling down from above. All too soon it seemed the evening was over and it was like leaving a wonderful friend to walk away from the glowing castle knowing that I'd never again get to see it like that.

But you know what, I can see it anytime and that makes the end of the ball auf weidersehen and not goodbye. That is the joy of the National Trust properties, all that enchanting history is there anytime for anyone to enjoy. Future visits might see me tucking into a picnic basket rather than a top notch meal but what's the difference if it's shared with friends? Good times are found in good locations with good friends and the essence of Bodiam Ball will be revisited many times over as we all enjoy our annual membership at the wonderful properties the National Trust ( preserve, from Bodiam to Standen, Nymans to Petworth.

Let the good time roll...

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Dream a little dream

There are many times in life we have a little dream of something; something that seems out of reach but the thought of it brightens your day. These are good dreams and I encourage everyone to squirrel away several. Because sometimes, just sometimes those dreams become a reality and your day is not only brightened but your whole life gets a big happy glow.

I dreamt of hosting a party at Bodiam Castle, it was my 'lottery win' fantasy treat for me and all my friends. Unless you are Brad Pitt hosting a party in a castle seems like a crazy dream but a dream worth having none the less. I am so glad I let my mind wander and build a Ball out of castle walls...

Thanks to the National Trust's Great British Day Out competition and a whole lot of lovely voters out there my Bodiam Ball idea got the green light! Yes! Tonight I along with a group of friends will get to eat, drink and make merry in our very own castle for the evening. Tonight we live like film stars and we'll even have a film crew there to capture the delight.

The Bodiam Ball really is a dream come true! I'm well aware of how incredibly fortunate I am to be given this once in a lifetime opportunity and intend to make every second of it count.

Come on clock, tick a little faster so I can get home, get my glad rags on and get going. This Cinderella has a ball to get to!

The magnificent Bodiam Castle - location of the once in a lifetime Bodiam Ball

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Bodiam Ball - let's make it happen!

Do you know Bodiam Castle? It is stunning, a perfect slice of history in a perfect setting. For a long time I've dreamt of hosting a wonderful night of indulgent fun there for friends and family. Now the National Trust are running a competition that could make that dream a reality....all I need are votes.

Check out the link Bodiam Ball

If you like the sound of my dream night out please vote and share the link to spread the word!

Thank you and fingers crossed! x