Holidays, A Birthday, Gary Barlow and Bohemian Rhapsody – Little Loves

Ah, little loves, where would I be without you? These happy posts are a lovely way to feel grateful for another month that’s passed. And what a month October was – between school holidays, Halloween, my birthday and a 2000-mile¬†road trip I’m feeling exhausted (in a good way ūüôā )¬†. I’m planning a big post on our half term road trip to France and Belgium, so I won’t linger too long on¬†the details¬†here. But first a few pictures before I get on with the Little Loves nitty-gritty. Ten days, four countries, two cities and that perennial post-holiday question – when’s the next one? So grab a coffee, a massive cup of tea¬†– or whatever you fancy – and join me for another lovely wander through the month.

Boy sitting on Dunkirk Beach in FrancePicture of The Poertoren Tower, BrugesBoy looking out over Palace of Versailles GardensDisneyland Paris Sleeping Beauty CastlePicture of the Eiffel Tower, ParisREAD

Holiday hangover aside, it’s been a fantastic month for me on the reading front. That school holidays/dark nights in the campervan combo meant that a LOT of books got read. You can find out all about that over on this month’s reading lately post, but for now, a little peek at my latest book, which was a birthday present from my¬†husband. He knows I’m a massive Gary Barlow fan¬†– did I ever tell you about the time¬†I met him¬†at John O’ Groats?¬†(Gary Barlow that is, not my husband¬† – who also happens to have the initials GB – how confusing!). Anyway, this is a fabulous book that any hard core Take Thatter like me will love. Even if you’re not a Take That fan, I’d wager this is still a stonkingly good read. A lot of it is devoted to Gary’s battle with food issues – and¬†it’s written in a lovely humorous style¬†without any trace of celeb filter or attempts to make himself look good.¬†Gary writes with such honesty about his experiences and a level of self awareness I’ve rarely seen in other books. As you can probably tell, I rather like¬†Mr Barlow. And my husband of course (who, I should point out in case he’s reading –¬†will always¬†remain my¬†GB number 1 ūüôā ).

Picture of 'A Better Me' by Gary Barlow


October was also a fantastic¬†month on the watching front, and in a rare burst of frequent cinema-going activity, we ended up going to the cinema three times to see First Man, Bohemian Rhapsody and A Star is Born. What a month for brilliant¬†movies eh? I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed so many films so much.¬†We saw First Man while we¬†were on holiday and it’s a lovely, understated movie with fantastic characterisation and fab acting (Ryan Gosling. No further explanation needed.) Unfortunately it was spoiled a little by a family sitting behind us who chatted intermittently through the whole movie (don’t you hate that?) so I’d like to watch it again when it comes out for download – in utter silence and at home ūüėČ . The next two movies were¬†brilliant (and thankfully not frequented by chatting cinema-goers) – Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper in A Star is Born –¬†so emotional,¬†and beautifully romantic too. And my favourite of the month – Bohemian Rhapsody –¬†which I could happily have gone to see again straight after it finished. Rami Malek is absolutely spellbinding as Freddie Mercury (by¬†the end of the movie I think I actually thought he WAS the real Freddie Mercury, to be fair).


Apart from listening to Queen’s Greatest hits on repeat since the above, we also enjoyed Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on audiobook during our holiday. Audiobooks are such a good way of keeping the kids amused on long journeys, and even though I read the book myself very recently, it was a great way of passing the time (all 8 and a half hours of it – and that was only to get as far as the Lake District! ūüôā ) – and it was also lovely for my 9 year old and my husband who haven’t read the books. I think that audiobooks are probably the way forward for us in terms of enjoying the rest of the series – my eldest has read all the books but some of them are massive. I have so many book sagas like Outlander on the go that I’m loathe to commit to too many new ones – especially when the kids have already¬†had us watching the movies one, two – or maybe the odd hundred or so¬†ūüėČ – times.

Picture of 'Harry Potter and the Philospher's Stone' on audiiobook


Groan, I have very little to discuss again on the wearing front. Except to say that if there is somewhere you really want to visit, my top¬†tip is to buy an item of clothing with the name of said destination on the front. I did this with a top saying ‘merci beaucoup Paris’, and what do you know, I found myself in the French capital. One of my latest purchases was an M&S New York t-shirt. Time to get the passports out again Mr B?

Gail in New York top.JPG


On the way home from our holiday (another 8 hours to fill – and that was just the half of it ūüėČ ) I made a little highlights video of our adventures. I’m not overly fond of making videos if I’m being honest, but I do enjoy having a quick highlights reel of our favourite trips. Here it is if you fancy a peek – it’s only 2 minutes long so won’t tie you up for ages. I know myself that as much as I enjoy seeing what other people are getting up to, if videos are over a few minutes long¬†I’m unlikely to¬†have the time to watch. I don’t think I have any kind of future in YouTube or vlogging – they’re just not my thing to be honest. My children, who will happily watch people playing video games on YouTube¬†for eons, naturally totally disagree!


That’s it for this month’s round up – I hope you’ve enjoyed it. November looks like being a busy month for me¬†between my writing group, some Book Week Scotland events and a few articles to write here on the blog. I’m also hoping to get back into the last 10,000 or so words of my book – which has been neglected since before the holidays. I have that difficult task now of getting back into the flow with it – one of the reasons I usually try to write on it every day. The last week has been a bit of a non-event in terms of getting things done with a lot of ‘life admin’ and niggly bits and pieces taking up my writing time. Never mind, eh? November is another month and all that. ¬†Whatever you’re doing I hope it’s a lovely one. I’ll be back soon for another round up of the month in Little Loves!


As usual, I’m linking this post up with Morgana’s monthly linky over at Coffee, Work, Sleep, Repeat.

Little Loves Coffee Work Sleep Repeat