Hello from Stirling, Scotland! We had the lovely opportunity to visit Stirling last weekend with Colin, his brother Niall and his wife Michelle. We strolled around the traditional roads and had a cup of coffee at a central italian cafe. It was so nice to catch up with everyone as we do not see each other very often. With a pack of newspapers under my arm, I felt armed to face a relaxing day filled with laughter and deep philosophical discussions (as we so often end up doing us McKays). I think that the topic of the day ended up being the illusion of self and other extententialist arms and legs that grew from that. But I will not bore you with philosophy, I promise. Instead, I will let you have a look at our photos below.
Have you been to Stirling before? Is there a favourite place that you would recommend I should visit the next time I am around?
I do hope this was the last snow for this winter. Don’t get me wrong…snow is not something I hate. I love the white little snowflakes coming down the sky and dressing everything in a festive white. I like looking at the snowed garden and I even went down a slope on a home-made sledge (we just used an oven tray!). It was crazy fun, I admit. But I don’t like it when I have to go out and walk in the dirty mashy snow on the pavements that gets as slippery as an ice-ring. And I don’t really like the cold. I am a Mediterranean girl – I just totally love the scorching heat and the summer days (and evenings).
My little Scarlett, on the other hand, loves the whole lot. She doesn’t complain. She just has fun. The first photo is my favourite (it was taken by Colin) and it is while she splashes a snowball at us. Such a great caption I think. The mountain photos are from the way to Aberfoyle on a crispy Sunday afternoon.
Do you enjoy the snow? Or like me you prefer watching the lovely scenery inside in front of a fireplace and with a warm cup of tea at hand?
Last Saturday I hosted a Burns night dinner at my house. This is a very traditional and exciting day for the Scots where they celebrate Robert Burns, the national poet of Scotland. I had planned the decorations and dinner for at least a month so I was so excited when Saturday came and I dressed the table and cooked the beautiful food. I am guilty to say that I didn’t manage to take any photos of the food as I was running about like crazy to cook and serve that I didn’t take the time to take a photo of each dish regretfully.
I am very excited though to have used a photo filter given by Zanita in the first photo of the table – it creates such a dreamy effect! (and it is the same filter that she used for these photos of Nicole at Gary Pepper Girl, what a massive honour!). Thank you Zanita, you are a cool girl!
For the table I chose a tartan runner and flowers in white and purple with thistles. I am always so happy to use my crystal glasses, a bit like Meryl Streep in the movie “Out of Africa” where she transferred all her crystal from Europe to her new house in Africa. I made red name tags with rafia bows and tree sticks. The “party bags” I gave to my guests had a small bottle of single malt whisky, shortbread (traditional Scottish biscuit) and tablet (traditional Scottish sweetie)!
Dinner was served with cullen skink for starter, traditional and vegetarian haggis (I always eat the veggie option, the other is too much for a greek girl like me!) with clapshot and a whiskey sauce for main, and a cranaghan with juicy rasberries for dessert. You can find it all in the inspiring “Celebrate” book below. And then there was lots of live music and singing. Colin and I have turned our dining room into a music room too. There is a piano, an acoustic guitar, an electric guitar, a base guitar, a couple of microphones and speakers and a cajon. Together with a mix of very talented musician we had for dinner, you can imagine it was some party!
To be honest I had turned my nose up when I saw that Pippa Middleton had published a book. I was intrigued enough though to flick through it. Right from the introduction, Pippa won me over with her honesty and the quality of the book and wonderful ideas have made it one of my favourites. It is possibly the first book I will go to when I want to organise a traditionally British event at home especially when you want a twist of glamour to it. So definitely recommended!
Have you ever been to a Burns’ night? Have you ever tried Scottish food?
It is this time of the year that the trees dress up in their autumn leaves, showing of colours of unique palettes and beauty. Autumn colours are my favourite as they complement my dark mediterranean complexion. In Glasgow specifically, the abundance of green and parks ensures a fantastic experience of colour, light and the sounds of dry leaves cracking under your boots.
I took my daddy to the Kelvingrove Park one sunny day and took some photos of the early autumn fashion show.
Where do you go to experience autumn glory in your city? I would love to come and visit it ;-)
Colin and I were invited to the charity dinner of Alzheimer Scotland at the Hampden Park Stadium in Glasgow. It was so exciting to be part of this since working all these years with patients I understand how much research and support contributes to improve quality of life and what a difference that makes to them. On arrival to the stadium, we were welcomed with a bubbly drink and were shown to our table, where a bag full of goodies was waiting for us. It contained a 1/2 hour spa treatment (you know I love these!), some eye make-up, a bottle of beer (I would prefer some pink champagne), and other little treats.
Paul Cooney opened the speeches and we were shown how patients with Alzheimer’s disease have been supported in groups that involve football games. It was so lovely to see patients to light up and get involved in interactions that their families did not think that they could still participate in.
Mr Craig Brown, CBE and famous manager of Scotland’s football team, he is actually the second most successful manager of all time, gave a very funny speech however he made the mistake to mention Greece which meant that he gave me the opportunity to meet him. He was very nice to me :-) When I went over to say hello, he was talking to Mr Bill Martin, this wonderful Scottish songwriter and music publisher. I was so thrilled to have my photo taken with them.
With Mr Craig Brown, CBE and second most successful manager of all time, and Mr Bill Martin, songwriter and music publisher (what an honour!).
Are there any charities that you support?