The city of Bath, Yule and embracing your inner T*at!

Hi lovebugs, welcome back, (or hello if you're new here)!

So this week I listened to Dawn French's, 'The Twat Files' on audiobook and have been gushing about it ever since! It's unputdownable and laugh out loud, wet your knickers funny. The word twat, according to Dawn, 'is an admonishment with a hug,' which she uses frequently and with great gusto throughout the book. The premise is about embracing our 'glittering defects,' that if we have a sense of humour about our mistakes the air is fresher and we ultimately are happier because we stop shaming ourselves for being human. It is ruddy brilliant and having bought it for my mother it honestly feels like the gift that keeps giving. Having my sixty year old mother call herself a twat has honestly tickled me for days! 

In all honesty laughs have been few and far between the last few weeks, what with the unfolding conflict happening in Palestine. I don't go a day without thinking of the unprecedented violence happening in the world and about the heartbreak of watching this suffering with our world leaders, (at least the UK ones) doing f*ck all about it. It's why I haven't been able to blog, it all feels so trivial in the face of such heartbreak. I'm trying to spread awareness on my Instagram pages and am signing petitions/donating when I can. It never feels enough but I'm trying to focus on hope, that millions of people across the world have marched and protested in solidarity for Palestine. We can and will make change.  

I'm coming to my blog to spread a bit of positivity, in the hope that it'll help our endurance, we must keep speaking up for Palestine. For more info follow me @hippietrailvintage 

The City of Bath 

I married a December baby and having heard how many birthdays have been passed by because of it's proximity to Christmas I was determined to spoil my husband. Being tired, overworked parents I knew the best way to treat my hubby was a night away! 

Having dropped the dog off at the dog boarders and installed my in laws in the cottage to watch the girls we drove an hour and half to the city of Bath. We only had 1 night away so we spent it walking around looking at the gorgeous Regency buildings in the characteristic Cotswold yellow brick. In truth, one day is not enough to see everything, we could have visited the Roman Baths, The Jane Austen museum, Thermae Spa, the postal museum or ice skated - there is honestly so much to do. Instead we simply ate and soaked up the sights walking the city, visiting little shops that took our fancy. 

Our hotel was 12 minutes drive out of the city and sat on the River Avon, if you're visiting I thoroughly recommend The Boathouse in Newbridge! 

We re-wear outfits on this blog, so here's the famous £30 vintage 70s dress that will be making many  more appearances on here! 

Mr Sunshine a.k.a my other half is very private so I'm afraid for our romantic trip away, you'll only be seeing photos of me! 

I loved the d├ęcor at our hotel and kept stopping to photograph everything, much to the annoyance of my hubby I'm sure! 

Aside our little getaway I've been trying to do lots of little things to get ready for Christmas, I can't remember if I shared in my last blog but here's a taste of some of the Christmas crafts I've been doing. I love using natural materials so bought in some foraged holly and ivy to decorate my table and mirror, incorporating some old books to give it a vintage, shabby chic feel. 

From 20th-23rd December is Yule, a time to celebrate letting go of the year that has passed. I plan to do some meditating, journaling and to light a white candle saying what I'm letting go of and setting intentions for 2024. In 2023 I am letting go of imposter syndrome, I've spent far too much time this year doubting myself. I think its symptomatic of returning to work after being on mat leave, we devalue mom's so much in this culture. It's hard assimilating back into work when it feels as though skills have stagnated doing the small job of raising humans!  

In 2024 I'm setting the intention to have more adventures travelling, both surfing with friends and trips with my family. I'm hoping to buy a caravan or maybe even just a nice big tent and be weekend warriors so there's lots of mini breaks to look forward to. This, I think, is the secret to happiness. Everyday contentment and gratitude in daily life alongside exciting moments to look forward to. I plan to welcome in more gratitude and financial security in 2024! Another big intention is to have my writing be a priority, I want to champion my passion and hopefully get that book published! 

The last few weeks in outfits 

Outfit wise it's been much of the same, Indian dresses, hippie jumpers, much of what you've seen already here! 

Please excuse the state of the mirror! This is my favourite thrifted denim skirt, eBay bought crocheted jumper and a silk scarf I got from a car boot. The hat is a Greek fisherman's hat I got off eBay again. 

Here's the outfit in the wild! We visited The Real Greek in Bracknell and I thoroughly embarrassed my husband being vain asking for a photo in front of it! 

This photo makes me laugh as I've managed to include the free tampons hahaha! This is what I wore to deliver a workshop on mental health for my day job. Here's a better outfit pic below: 

Wearing my £10 70's Vinted jacket, Devonshire Lady 70's dress from eBay and my Vinted Asos boots. 

As aforementioned I'm not shy to re-wear outfits, here's my Vinted Afghan dress I got for £15 and my charity shopped faux fur waistcoat. 

The dress above is a well worn favourite (just see my title bar on the homepage) as is the vintage 60's coat I got for £3 from credit cruncher vintage in Birmingham. Both dresses are from Vinted. The knitted waistcoat should have been on Hippie Trail Vintage but I found I couldn't part with it so it's been absorbed into my wardrobe! 

Last but not least is my outfit I wore to take the kids to see Winnie the Witch at the Jaqueline de Pre music building in Oxford. The cardigan is originally from New Look which I snaffled on Vinted and the dress was an anniversary present off my husband from All about Audrey. 

Reading wise I've been getting through lots of fab books (but only remembered to photograph this one)! I thoroughly enjoyed Sunset by Jesse Cave and this one, The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult. In all honesty this cover didn't pull me in, I was frazzled trying to wrangle the girls in my local library so literally ran my  fingers along the bookcase and landed on this one. The story has multiple narratives set in both the modern day and during WW2. In the present tense Sage, a reclusive baker due to a traumatic accident, befriends an old man Josef, who later reveals that he's not only a former Nazi but wishes to have her assist his suicide. The story then swerves to the 1940s and follows Sage's grandmother Minka, a young Jewish girl who is first rounded up into the ghetto and then forced into a concentration camp. Running alongside Minka's narrative is that of Josef's how he goes from being a loving brother, to part of the system that wiped out thousands of Jewish people. 

Given Israel's current actions I hesitated to read this book but I'm glad I did, I'm not angry at Israeli people or Judaism, I'm angry at their government, at the system of Zionism. I will never, ever agree with what Israel is doing to Palestine, but reading this book has helped me remember that people are not their governments. 

Okay love bugs I've got kids to get ready for bed! 

Until next time 

Love Sophia x 



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