Tuesday 5 January 2010


Yesterday started with an amazing and utterly delightful discovery. The world-famed blogger, LibertyLondonGirl (French Vogue calls her blog 'Une Bible') had selected me - me! - as one of her ten most popular blogs to read in 2010.

Then, out of the blue, yesterday morning another wonderful surprise, the talented Mrs Trefusis Takes a Taxi nominated this little blogette as one of her favourite discoveries of 2009. (If you haven't already, I beg you to visit her blog. Her writing is exquisite, and she's a great inspiration to me.)

Ok, there's a catch. It's a meme tag. I quote The Errant Aesthete who originally tagged Mrs T (and whose blog is the definition of beautiful - enjoy).

Here’s how being tagged works. When nominated, you are required to tell ten things about yourself, then pass along the standard to seven other bloggers of your choosing. They, in turn, carry on the tradition.

Recommending blogs is the easy bit, but ten whole things about myself? I'd need a glass of chilled Sauvignion Blanc for anything this personal, but since it's January when I usually try not to let the Devil's juice pass my lips, I'll have to do this with a clear head. Due to this handicap and due to the fact that I've already made some quite juicy revelations here before, I'm going to have to go halves. Sorry, but five true and interesting things will have to do (I admire Mrs T and The Errant for managing so many more, although neither played strictly by the rules so I'm in good company).

1. I cried like a baby when Son left for university. Same when Daughter left for gap year. Not proud of this fact but there we are. When not with my children I miss them terribly. I've always been a working mum, haven't doted on them (much) and I've always made a point of having my own life, holidays with husband alone and so on. So the stupidly worded 'empty nesting' syndrome was a bolt from the blue. Oh well, guess I'll survive.

2. I get uncontrollable chocolate cravings. But only when I know there's some in the house. It's as if the bars are winking at me with their 'Come hither and consume me' -eyes. If anyone knows of a cure, my expanding waistline would love to learn about it.

3. I hate speaking on the phone. I'd much rather text, email or even meet face to face. I don't know what it is, only that I'd rather cut my arm off than answer the phone. (Hence the picture...)

4. I love drawing, the artistry kind. When I was younger I did a lot of painting and sketching and my mother (as well as my very favourite schoolteacher in Sweden, an out-there-fashionable-ahead-of-his-time man, called Johan Johansson - yes really, a very Swedish name, eh?) thought I should have applied to Ateneum in Helsinki (School of Art) after my Baccalaureat, but I thought it would never earn me a living and went to Hanken instead (Swedish School of Economics). But then you knew that from How I came to be in England, right?

5. I have an obsession with Grazia magazine. I get Vogue and love it too, but Grazia is so much trashier. I know I shouldn't, especially as it's owned by that most chauvinistic of pigs, Berlusconi, and actually embraces everything I hate about the modern culture: fame adoration, wrong female role models, over-the-top consumerism...do I need to go on? But I love gossiping with Daughter on Skype about who's wearing what and how bad/good they look, who's seeing whom, who's cheating on whom. It's Wednesday today and Grazia came out yesterday and I didn't get it, and now I'm already having withdrawl symptoms. And I can't get out as we're snowed in. Pass the chocolate.

Now to the nice part of this tag game. Nominating 7 Blogs to follow. Actually this is very hard. There are so many good ones on my blogroll, and I've recommended some of them before. So I decided to go with new ones I've discovered fairly recently.

1. The Divorcee Dares To Dream who says she's 'Less high-brow than her parents wish she was', writes a great blog about life, fashion and nothing and everything in particular. Very enjoyable reading.

2. North West London Girl In The Country writes wittily about her new life out of the Metropolis. This really resonates with me because it's exactly how I felt when we moved here 13 years ago.

3. Blonde Moments The writer of this blog is very talented indeed and her byline is the best I've come across yet. 'The recounting of my life's all too frequent Blonde Moments, from my eternal struggle with the men in my life to the time I got stuck in the pavement...'

4. Intercultural Musings has to be close to my heart. It's great to read a well-written blog which celebrates our differences, rather than bashes one country's residents versus another. Well done Margit!

5. Backwards in High Heels is Tania Kindersley and Sarah Vine's marvellous blog about life. They write intelligently and passionately about subjects close to their hearts. What more could anyone wish for?

6. The Loves and Life of a London Girl is a very funny and sometimes sad blog about dating. A modern Bridget Jones and so much more. Go and learn!

7. Is it really seven already? Oh no...The last but by no means least blog I'd recommend got me hooked firstly because of its title What Would Katharine Hepburn Do? But the blog is definitely worthy of its title. The author says she's 'A mother, partner, writer, editor, and L.A. native planning a midlife move to New York'. Her blog is so enjoyable you'll be wishing for more frequent posts.

Now over to you fellow bloggers. Can't wait to see what you reveal about yourselves...


Wildernesschic said...

Well done Helena you deserve the recognition and thanks for the nod towards undiscovered territory. I love to discover a new blog ,that I enjoy readingx

Bernie said...

Congratulations, Helena. You deserve every bit of recognition you receive. I am happy for you. And I love to hear about new posts as well.

I read a lot but do not comment much.

Chic Mama said...

Wow, congratulations Helena. Chocolate winks at me too and I think I've mentioned before how scared I am of the telephone.
I look forward to checking out those blogs that I haven't seen before, they sound great. x

Susan Champlin said...

I'm so honored—thank you, Helena, for including my blog in your list of discoveries! Now madly thinking of my revelations... So delighted to have met you here in the blogosphere, and to be getting to know your fascinating story. Cheers!

Tiffany said...

I come from way of LLG's blog as well, and I can say she really did showcase some of the nicest most interesting in their story telling blogs. I am so so new to your blog and I adore it already!

That's Not My Age said...

Hi Helena, I've just found your blog via Mrs Trefusis and now I'm following you too, so keep typing! Thanks for your list - really like What would Katharine Hepburn do, it's very fine. Top recommendation. Thanks.

Tania Kindersley said...

Helena - thank you for the nomination. I am utterly honoured. Now of course I have to reveal my ten things, and am quite terrified at the thought. But really, well done with your beautiful blog and thank you for your support. xx

Unknown said...

Thank you all for your kind words and support. I feel quite overwhelmed.
Helena xx

Errant Aesthete said...


You had me at the pic of the phone. Fabulous! And yet you hate talking on it. Welcome to contradictions anonymous.

Thank you for your praises, always welcome, always appreciated. Lovely meeting you.