Monthly Archives: February 2014

Brunch at The Montagu
(and as much complimentary Prosecco
as you can handle)

Brunch at
The Montagu

I’m sorry? ‘All-I-can-eat’ and as much complimentary Prosecco as I can handle? Really? Oh, ok then. And I think I’ll take my pal NJ with me too. Because a) she’s lovely and b) she can drink more Prosecco than me.

I already love the Hyatt Churchill. For this reason. And this. But the amazing New York style Buffet Brunch at The Montagu, really has made me fall in love with it even more.

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Live and let Dyson


A hoover is a hoover is a hoover.


Erm, NO.

My life has changed irrevocably, since Dyson came into my life. This happened just before Christmas and things just haven’t ever been quite the same since.

I am talking specifically about the Dyson DC39 Animal Bagless Cylinder Vacuum Cleaner. It had me at ‘Bagless. (And at ‘Animal’, if I’m honest.) I got it online here at Argos. (It currently has £100 off! The price at the time of writing this is £269.99)

You wouldn’t think that I would be merrily tapping away here telling you all to abandon your current vacuum cleaners in some kind of crazy Burn Your Bras manner, and go and get my amazing one instead… but I am. Do it. Your vacuum cleaner just cannot be as wondrous as mine. I’m certain. Mine’s amazing. Mine’s THE BEST. (I did not get marched out of Rounders practise when I was 7, for being too competitive. I did not.)

Here are my top reasons why I love it so, (and it’s not because it’s purple, although we should not ignore this fact. Purple is clearly the best. Cadbury. Bam.)

1. It is so, so light and easy to carry and manoeuvre.  I used to have a Henry, whom I do miss as he smiled at me, but boy was he a heavy chap. This vacuum cleaner can be picked up and carried all over my flat without a groan or twinge.

2. Super Suction! I have long hair. So do both of my flatmates. This is one hairy flat. If I didn’t vacuum regularly, I’d probably be able to bag it all up and give Fontine a run for her money by flogging it on Portobello. This, actually, is not my chosen career path, so I choose to get rid of it. This Vacuum cleaner is a hair sucking miracle. Whoosh! It’s all gone.

(I now realise that it is called ‘Animal’, not because it looks cute and can play the drums like Animal in Sesame Street, but because it is excellent at sucking up dog and cat hair. This makes much more sense.)

3. It’s bagless. BAGLESS! It has no bag! This needs no further explanation. I love it. The filter is washable, so there are no additional costs after you’ve bought it (hurrah!) and dust capacity is 2 litres, so you won’t be emptying is every five minutes either.

4. The turbine head is controlled at the handle – this means that no bending down is required. This is not a huge plus point for me as I am lucky enough to be agile and (a bit) bendy, but for anyone for whom bending down is an issue, this vacuum cleaner is for you! There is also a Tangle-free turbine tool which is designed to remove pet hair and dirt from trickier and awkward places, like upholstery, stairs, or inside the car…

5. It’s quiet… shhhhh. I can’t get over how un-noisy it is. I remember my mum hoovering when I was little and it was as if an earthquake and an angry elephant were having an argument in the living room. My Dyson has been engineered for reduced noise levels and it really really works.

There are lots of other clever bits and pieces, which have made the whole vacuuming experience much more pleasurable; It has a long hose – 3.5m and it can stretch to 5m, it has a foot operated cord rewind, it has a central steering mechanism, so it’s easy to control, it makes coffee and their website states that Dyson cyclones remove more dirt than any other cyclone.

It doesn’t really make coffee.

So there you have it. New vacuum, new life. I am one happy, hair-free Poppy.

Well done Mr Dyson. Hats off.


This post was sponsored 


Book club: ‘The Rosie Project’ by Graeme Simsion

photo 1

I’m very pleased to announce that my next book club read is ‘The Rosie Project‘ by Graeme Simsion. (You can pick up a copy over here.)


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *GRAB A FREE BOOK!

Penguin have given me some books to give away to you guys, so this will be on a first come, first served basis. If you would like a copy of ‘The Rosie Project‘, please drop me a line and if you’re one of the lucky ones, I will pop it in the post to you.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I met author Graeme Simsion earlier this week, so I will come to book club armed full of anecdotes. (Hopefully he will be able to join us online for the discussions as well – fingers crossed!)


(If you’re on Instagram, you can follow me here – @poppy_loves1)

Join me on Wednesday, March 12th at 7.30pm in The Refectory at The Duke of Wellington pub on Portobello road, for book chat dins, tea and cake. We talk books, life and anything else you fancy. Don’t panic – there will still also be an online discussion if you can’t scoot over to Notting Hill!  Also, please don’t worry if you can’t make either of these events – there’ll be plenty of opportunity to comment and share your thoughts afterwards in the Facebook group and on my blog too.

The Refectory at The Duke of Wellington Pub

The Refectory at The Duke of Wellington Pub

To join this discussion, in real life or online, please see below.

In the meantime, please do invite your friends to Poppy Loves’ Book Club – it’s growing rapidly and is proving to be lots of fun! Thank you for signing up – it’s great to have you on board.


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About ‘The Rosie Project’‘An instant classic’ The Observer

‘One of the most endearing, charming and fascinating literary characters’ The Times

Currently number #3 in the Sunday Times Bestseller’s paperback fiction chart [behind only James Patterson and Jodi Picoult], the much loved romantic comedy, The Rosie Project, hits the road with a lobster themed book tour!

This first novel about a man with undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome became the unlikely publishing phenomenon of 2013, with rights now sold in more than 40 countries around the world. It’s been described as a cross between Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, about a teenager with Asperger’s, and David Nicholls’s One Day, a bittersweet love story – both huge bestsellers.  It hit the top spot in author Graeme Simsion’s native Australia, stormed the Sunday Times Bestseller’s chart in the UK and topped the Indie Next list and Library Reads list in the US, winning glowing reviews and author endorsements across the board.

The Duke of Wellington
179 Portobello Road
Q11 2ED

Crafternoon Cabaret Club (Yes, really)

Crafternoon Cabaret

Can we all just pause for a moment. Crafternoon Cabaret. Cabaret. With Crafts. In the afternoon. Mazin.

Gem, Shani and I toddled off to Islington on a Saturday afternoon just before Christmas (hence the craft project theme) and found ourselves at the Library Pub on Upper Street.

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Sunshine on Leiths

Title - Leiths Brownies 4

I love baking. I know you know this, but I’m telling you again. I love baking. Cakes, cookies, muffins, meringues.. I love it all. However, I wouldn’t call myself a super duper top notch baker. I’d call myself the kind of ‘cross-your-fingers-and-hope-for-the-best-but-you-know-I’m-going-to-eat-it-anyway’ kind of baker. So, Saturday was a bit of a treat for me. On Saturday, I baked my little socks off at Leiths Cookery School of Food and Wine.

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