Hotter Shoes - Brighton Launch

My mum loves Hotter shoes, she's been buying them for years. I've never really taken a look at their range for a couple of reasons, one that I thought they were just for a certain generation and another that I'm not keen on buying shoes online.  I like the shoe-shopping experience, feeling the shoes and trying them on - lots of them!

So when I was invited to the launch of the new Hotter store in Brighton and to view their new collection, I thought what better opportunity to see for myself.  I was really pleasantly surprised at the broadness of the range everything from boots to court shoes to mary janes to sports/walking shoes and much more.   I tried on practically everything and I think you'll agree that the diversity of their range can span the generations.

My shoe size has changed slightly since I had Miss CCL, I used to take a size 4 (37) but since then a 4.5 has been more comfortable.  I have found, though, that a lot of shoe shops don't cater for half sizes so I'm usually in a size 5 (38) for comfort.  Hotter, on the other hand, do most of their range in half sizes starting from 4.5 which turned out to be a perfect fit for me.

To say I was delighted with my final choice of footwear is an understatement.  After trying on several styles, I chose the Ribble boot in black with Goretex ® which lets the air in whilst keeping water out, fur lined, great grip sole, just fabulous, my dream school run, dog walking, coffee in town, stylish, extremely comfortable, top quality boots!

The new season shoes were on show with some gorgeous new designs and colours, a range reminiscent of Downton Abbey, with a wonderful modern twist.  Hotter also has an impressive selection of men's shoes as well as a stunning collection of handbags all with the same attention to style and detail and some great colour options.

Hotter is the UK's biggest shoe manufacturer, making a pair of shoes every 20 seconds!  They actually started in business making slippers, now their shoes and boots are as comfortable as wearing slippers.  Each shoe and boot includes a comfort concept feature which includes cushioning, flexibility, lightness and allows for wiggle room for toes.  Their soles, made in the Hotter factory in Lancashire, are filled with millions of air bubbles, no wonder they are so super comfortable.

I would like to thank Hotter shoes for a delightful evening and the staff from the new Brighton Hotter Shoes store for the warm welcome and help finding and fitting our shoes. Thanks too to Mel and Jenni from Hotter's PR team for the invitation.

Disclosure: I was gifted a complimentary pair of Hotter shoes for the purposes of this review. All comments and thoughts are my own.

An Amazing Day at River Cottage HQ

Last week I was fortunate to spend a day at River Cottage HQ and Foodies100, it was a pretty amazing experience and lovely to network and put some faces to names.  Pop over to my food blog Nutritious Deliciousness for the full story.


My Sunday Photo and a Summer break

This is all I've got for My Sunday Photo this week, beach, beach and more beach.  I never tire of living by the coast and our sea views.

And with summer in full fling and the school holidays nearly upon us, it's time to take a break.  Stats and scores will plummet but none of that matters, what does matter is spending quality time with Miss CCL, celebrating her 5th birthday and getting out on our travels in the warmth of the sun and plenty of fresh air.

Happy Summer break everyone!



My Sunday Photo - Poppies

It has been a lovely surprise to see Poppy fields literally popping up locally in the last couple of weeks when I thought there would be none this year.  

Apparently because we had a milder Winter followed by a warm Spring, it has helped create the perfect conditions for Poppies.  And even more interesting, I saw on a weather report last week that Poppy seeds can live dormant in the soil for around 40 years and suddenly come to life if there is a disturbance in the earth which is why we are seeing so many unexpectedly flower randomly in fields! Who knew!

This is the first time I have seen Poppies from our bedroom window, that seagull seems determined to get into my photo's!

And this is one of the Poppies from the field, a rather exotic version of the ones in my garden.

Any Poppy fields sprouting near you??

My Sunday Photo

Fabulous lunch at Silo Brighton with Miele, loved watching all the professionals at work, from the chefs to the photographer and videographers.  You can learn a lot just by absorbing the atmosphere!

The theme of the lunch was Silo's ethos of zero waste, pop over to my food blog at Nutritious Deliciousness for the full scoop on sustainability and what the chefs prepared for us.


My Sunday Photo - Street Art

There is quite a bit of graffiti or street art around the town, very spectacular designs splashed over walls and sides of buildings, so colourful and brightening up spaces by very talented artists.

I expect everyone has their views on this type of art, but here it is part of the landscape.


My Sunday Photo

The bees are busy buzzing around the garden, the Borage seems to be their main attraction, it has certainly gone wild this year, Buttercups too but I never seem to see a bee on them.  I saw an article the other day that said bumble bees love scruffy gardens!  By that they mean letting wildflowers grow to attract them.  After our dog passed away recently I decided to leave the back garden do whatever it liked in his memory and it certainly has, Buttercups, Borage, Acquilegia, Forget-me-nots and many I have yet to identify have taken root and it is awash with colour and greenery.   We miss you little dog.


My Sunday Photo - Peonies

Finally my Peonies have exploded into bloom!  These photos are completely unedited and just as I snapped them yesterday.  Peonies are so intricate and the colour depth is just gorgeous.

These Peonies flower every year, they push their way up through the soil and beguile us with their crimson beauty, even when we had the garden raised and they had further to go to get to the surface, they still popped up, that's real determination.  We could all learn a lot from the strength of plants.


My Sunday Photo

I caught this cheeky seagull sitting on the No Fishing sign in our local pond, the pond is full of fish, not sure if the seagull can read!


Dandelions Galore - My Sunday Photo

Every year one of my small lawns is a carpet of Dandelions.  We leave them be, one for the sheer pleasure of seeing their beautiful golden flowers and two for their ability to turn their flowers into fluffy pom-poms seemingly overnight for Miss CCL to blow their seeds and watch them fly into the distance and of course some that end up back on the lawn!

But most importantly, we leave them on the lawn for the bees, the Dandelion flowers are the first Spring food for them and we need our bees!  I also drink Dandelion tea from time to time, their leaves are medicinal and their roots can be roasted and ground into Dandelion "coffee".

So rather than pulling them up or using chemicals to eradicate them, leave them, enjoy them, think of them not as a weed, but more of a medicinal powerhouse.

And don't forget to close your eyes and make a wish...


Blossom on the Trees - My Sunday Photo

It's that time of year again, the blossom is on the trees and what a fantastic welcome sight it is.  We have 2 Cherry trees and 4 Apple trees in our garden and this year looks like a bumper crop may be coming.  I say may because some years if the weather does not play nice the wind and rain can knock off the blooms before they are pollinated and we get little or nothing!

And some years we get so much produce we have to beg friends, family and sometimes complete strangers to take some Apples, please!

The Cherries on the other hand, we have no choice but to share with the birds, they get the top ones which I can't reach even with a ladder but the bottom boughs are mine!

How beautiful are these blossoms, the carpet of falling petals are worth clearing up with what comes after, glorious apples and cherries to eat!

Mammasaurus How Does Your Garden Grow