Festive Kitchens at Hampton Court

Hampton Court is best visited in the festive season for one reason; the Christmas kitchens.

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Just after Christmas the palace kitchens come alive with cooks re-creating a standard tudor Christmas dinner.

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The rest of the castle gets involved and everyone is invited to court. I am a huge history geek so I love getting involved and it’s a perfect way of introducing little ones to the Tudors.

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If you’re not completely exhausted then take a little tour of the Georgian half of the palace,it’s not as full on as the Tudor part but equally as beautiful.

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Afterwards grab some Tudor style grub from the cafe.

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The best part of visiting Hampton Court Palace is the cloaks you can wear; perfect for keeping you toasty whilst walking through the palace and fabulous for swishing!

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Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

For opening times and entry fees click here.

Shakespeare in Love|Theatre Review

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I’ve been a fan of the bard (William Shakespeare) since I was little; growing up in the theatre I was always hearing, learning or speaking his words and one of my favourite films ever was Shakespeare in Love, a fictional story of how the play Romeo and Juliet came about. It’s a beautiful romantic comedy and back in July it was brought to the stage at the Noel Coward Theatre.

My wonderful mum surprised my sister and I with tickets to go and see the show which is directed by Declan Donnellan and was adapted for stage by Lee Hall. It is even more hilarious than the film but still plucks at your heart strings. The cleverness of both the writing and the plot is that it could have been written by Shakespeare himself. Women masquerading as men, star-crossed lovers, duals and a performing dog.

Tom Batemen is a spectacular Will Shakespeare commanding the stage with his boyish charms and Lucy Briggs Owen almost matches him as his lover Viola De Lesseps. I could not fault a single actor in the show but honourable mentions should go to David Oakes as the charming and talented Marlowe and Doug Rao as the flamboyant Ned Alleyn.

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Instagram – http://www.instagram.com/whatkatedidnext92

Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

For more information and tickets click here.

Boxing Day Snapshot

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It has become a little tradition for A to join my family on Boxing Day and there is nothing better to work off the Christmas Day food coma than with a brisk morning walk.

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A is basically the ginger version of me we are both completely mental!

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Despite gorging ourselves silly the day before we still somehow had room for even more food. Honey roast gammon with vegetables followed by cheese and biscuits, a wonderful gingerbread house made by A and orange cake with christmas pudding ice-cream.

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After dinner we played a rather fun game which if you are into board games like Risk or Settlers of Catan then this game Carcassonne would be right up your street!

How do you spend your boxing day?

Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

Christmas Comes But Once A Year…

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Santa decided I had been good this year, I was well and truly a very lucky girl this Christmas.

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I kicked Christmas off the way it should be started with a G+T (it was past 12 so don’t worry) and a mini chicken pie before cooking up a storm in the kitchen.

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Mum and I were in charge of the kitchen this year and although we are not natural cooks we were pretty proud of what we cooked up.

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Dress – Missguided|Shoes – ASOS|Tights – Primark|Necklace – Topshop.

I like to get a little dressed up at Christmas and I have been waiting to whip this velvet number out for months. I also couldn’t resist these cute Mickey and Minnie tights from Primark.

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and stuffed yourself silly!

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Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

Twas the night before Christmas…

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Christmas Eve is super special in my family. The tree goes up, the house is filled with the smell of baking and we all finish up our wrapping snuggled up in front of a film – The Holiday was my choice this year.

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I spent my morning cooking up a storm in the kitchen including my dads famous parmesan biscuits
plus more gingerbread.

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My favourite thing about Christmas eve is putting up the tree, when Carol at Kings comes on the radio we all rally round and decorate the tree, it’s a bit old fashioned but it’s tradition.

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Dress – H&M|Hairbow – Topshop. 

What Christmas eve traditions do you have?

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Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

“Mr. and Mrs. Brown first met Paddington on a railway platform”

 

We’re going on a bear hunt we’re going to catch a…Paddington!

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I once again returned to my beloved london to search out a few of the Paddington Bears that have been placed round the city in celebration of the new film. It’s a great opportunity to see parts of the city that you don’t normally go to and to actually walk around London instead of hopping on and off tubes.

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We started off with the Shakesbear which you can find just past the globe, not before stopping at the amazing christmas market situated by the Tate. If for some reason you are feeling a little worse for wear then definitely pick up a hog roast roll it will make you feel much better!

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Across the river near St Pauls Cathedral is Bear in the Wood this was quite a quiet bear sighting so if you want to avoid the crowds of bear hunters then check this one out.

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The next bear we spotted was inside the Museum of London designed by Benedict Cumberbatch the Sherlock Bear is dressed up as my favourite detective.

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Hidden away slightly in Guildhall Square is Good Morning London Paddington, this is a really tricky one to find but I love how different it is from the other ones we had spotted. Round the corner from this bear I stumbled across a gorgeous square full of galleries and museums, finding the perfect spot for some outfit pictures.

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Jeans – New Look (similar)|Long Sleeve Top – H&M(sale)|Coat – Abercrombie|Trainers – Converse(similar)|Hat- River Island|Bag – Accesorize(similar).

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Outside the very festive Royal Exchange is the R,G,B bear a rather colourful bear it makes the centre of the city look much brighter than it normally does.

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Re-tracing our steps we stumbled across Fragile Bear which is near the Tate and that was where our bear hunt stopped however there are fifty to find and with the trail ending on the 30th December what are you waiting for get your bear hunting kit and get out there.

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We warmed ourselves up in our favourite Belgium cafe Le Pain Quotidein before heading home.

Have you been on a bear hunt yet?

Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO

For more information on the Paddington Trail visit here.

Quick Gingerbread Presents

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So Christmas is like 2 days away and let’s not lie I am not feeling particularly organised, hopefully I am not the only one. I have been frantically searching for some last minute presents and these gingerbread cookies are a yummy edible gift to give that awkward aunt or second cousin twice removed who tends to turn up at Christmas – or for anyone in the family with a sweet tooth.

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You will need: 

125g Unsalted Butter

100g Dark Brown Muscovado Sugar

4 tbsp Golden Syrup

325g Plain Flour

1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda

2 tsp Ground Ginger

5 tbsp Icing Sugar

Decorations.

I found all of these in my kitchen cupboard so double check before you dash to the shops.

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Preheat the oven to 170C and then melt the butter,sugar and syrup together in a saucepan and then remove from the heat.

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Sieve the bicarbonate, ginger and flour into a large mixing bowl and then pour the melted ingredients in.

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Mix the ingredients together till you get a stiff ball of dough-it will have a slight sticky texture to it so don’t worry.

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Roll the dough out on a floured surface to a thickness of about 5mm and then using cookie cutters or printed templates cut out festive shapes.

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Place the cookies onto a baking tray covered in baking parchment and pop in the oven for 10 minutes – or until golden brown.

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Now its time to decorate and get messy cover any mistakes with sprinkles – trust me it helps.

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Package them up in a cute little bag or box and they are ready to go. These will keep for 2 weeks in an air tight container.

Who knew making ginger bread was so easy!?

Peace Out and Pixie Dust XO