Exciting Times at The Pier, Harwich

I love visiting Harwich. My beloved Aunt and Uncle live there, walking distance from the sea, and I never tire of a walk along the Ha’penny Pier to watch the fishing boats come and go with the daily catch.  When I’m there I just cannot resist having lunch at the Milsom’s seaside offering, The Pier Restaurant and Hotel.

What better place to eat than walking distance from where the day’s fish has been bought ashore after all?

And there are exciting new changes afoot at this charming waterfront eatery.  Tom Bushell, the revered chef at Le Talbooth, has made the move to The Pier to take on the exciting new challenge of Head Chef.  Armed with fresh ideas and an inspiring new menu an excited Tom said ‘it was my boyhood dream when I first started in Dedham to one day work at The Pier. I never thought I’d end up as head chef in the Harbourside restaurant’

If you haven’t been to Harwich before and visited The Pier it really is a must for this summer.  With the first floor restaurant views over the Stour and Orwell estuaries, it really is a treat that has to be seen to be believed. As well as The Harbourside restaurant, The Pier also has the Ha’penny Brassiere on the ground floor and 14 bedrooms, perfect for a luxurious weekend at the seaside.

For more information on The Pier Harwich, and all Milsom’s hotels and restaurants, please visit http://www.milsomhotels.com/

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Get Set Bake Review

With the kitchen being my favorite room in the house and cooking one of the things I most enjoy doing I’m sure that it will come as no surprise that I have fallen in love with Get Set Bake baking kits.

Set up by sisters Henrietta and Anastasia, Get Set Bake is wonderful idea allowing even the most novice of bakers create wonderful cakes and biscuits in their own homes.

My favourite of the kits we have tried has to be the heart shaped biscuit kits – they tasty so yummy and looked so lovely on the place.  The only problem with them was they were so good they got eaten by the family before I got a chance to take a picture of my master piece.

The kits contain all the dry ingredients you need for you baking plus any cases, cutters and icing you may need.  Having the ingredients ready weighed really takes the hassle out of an afternoon of cake making, this is a major plus point when I normally have little hands trying to help.

These kits would make great presents, I know my little lady would love to receive one for her birthday this weekend, and I think I have the mothers’ day gifts sorted for this year too.

Mothers Day Kit

Cupcake kit that is a fun and delicious way to celebrate!  The kit makes 6 large cupcakes and includes beautiful edible flowers, glitter, Belgian chocolate, piping bag and all the dry ingredients needed. Costing only £8 this is a sweet treat not to be missed.

For more information on Get Set Bake and their Baking Kits please visit their website.  I cannot wait to put my apron back on and start baking again.

Essex Mum Of The Year 2012

The award winning Uppercut Hair Group, in partnership with Inspired Essex Magazine, is looking for ‘Essex’s Mum of the year 2012.’

They want to know why your mum is the best in Essex and deserves a day of pampering with a makeover in one of Uppercuts six salons, all based in Essex. (Chigwell, Gants Hill, Brentwood, Hornchurch, Romford, Upminster.)

Entering is simple and takes one minute, just email sarah.clark@inspiredessex.co.uk or visit our www.inspiredessex.co.uk  and say why your mum deserves the Uppercut VIP Treatment for Mother’s Day.

Could there be any better way to say Happy Mother’s day than crowning your mum ‘Essex’s Mum of the year 2012.

Entries must be received by Friday 23 March and Mum must be available to enjoy her makeover before Friday 20th April.

Life after TOWIE

The other day I was explaining the context of my blog to someone and joked that An Essex Wife is ‘the story of what happens in life after the TOWIE days end’.  Now I haven’t, and probably never will, appear in The Only Way Is Essex, however as much as this flippant comment was joke, when I thought about it there is actually some truth in it.

4 years ago I met a young man who changed my life in an instant; I gave up my Essex girl party lifestyle (I’d have given Lucy and co and run for their money in my day) and ran off into the sunset with my Prince Charming.  I may no long have the time to have my nails done on a weekly basis or apply my fake tan religiously and certainly cannot justify spending vast amounts of money on the latest designer dress for a night out, but that doesn’t matter, as it has all been replaced with things I love even more.

These days I am more likely to book a table at a quaint little restaurant on a Saturday night than a table in Faces or Sugar Hut, that was obvious last week at the Hybrid Fashion Party when I struggled to recognise hardly any of the soap stars and reality stars being papped on the way in, I just do not mix in these circles any more.

But my life these days is pretty amazing; I wouldn’t change it for anything.  I’m glad I had such a colourful past; it’s always good to have a story of two to tell. I will encourage my girls to enjoy their youth and make the most of being a single girl about town, because one day, if they are really lucky like me, they’ll meet someone as amazing as their daddy and settle down.  My memoires of ‘the good old days’ will never fade, they will always be there to remind me that life before children was so much fun, but also make me see that life with them is so much better. There should be no regrets in this life, as the amazing Adele said ‘regrets and mistakes, they are memories made’ after all.

Don’t get me wrong I still love to put on a new dress and sky scraper heels and dance the night away with my girl friends. I just enjoy it all the more now, safe in the knowledge that I’m going home to a wonderful man who’ll make me breakfast in bed when my head is feeling a little sore the next morning.

So if you are reading Lauren and Lydia (and any other single party girls out there), one day Mr Right will come along and sweep you off your feet, but until them don’t dwell on the past or stress about the future, just enjoy the present. Because these memories you’re making right now will be the ones that keep you warm with your coco when you are old and grey.

Hybrid Fashion – The LFW Party

Last week saw me leave Essex and head for the bright lights of London for a spot of fashion loving and celeb spotting.

Hybrid Fashion, a firm favourite of many celebs, hosted a London Fashion week party on Tuesday night to celebrate their re-launch and show on off how simply fabulous they are. Held at the beautiful Jewel Bar on Glasshouse Street, it gave me a great excuse to get all dressed up and let me hair down with my lovely friend Jen.

The event, sponsored by OK! Magazine, pulled quite a crowd and the atmosphere was buzzing. Everyone looked amazing, and the Hybrid dresses on display made me want to go and buy the whole collection.

Hybrid and OK! Magazine London Fashion Week Party - London

Image Credit - metro.co.uk

Hybrid and OK! Magazine London Fashion Week Party

Image Credit metro.co.uk

We had some lovely cocktails, some very tasty cupcakes from Black Vanilla Cupcakes and even a bit of a dance!  It was a fab  night and I cannot wait to see much more of this great brand.

Stockists in Essex can be found below – go check them out and get yourself a new dress – you know you want to!

Minnie’s Boutique – Brentwood

Glam – Chingford

Leyla’s Boutique – Chelmsford