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Monday, 25 October 2021

Cosy Autumn Coats: Style Not Age Challenge

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in velvet coat from Joe Browns

It's time to reach for a cosy coat, and here's the latest Style Not Age Challenge to inspire you.  My coat is called "the Virtuous Velvet Coat" and you can find it on Joe Browns. They kindly gifted me the coat, which I think you'll agree is stunning with its gold buttons and shaping. 

A burgundy velvet coat with gold buttons is the cosy coat chosen by Is This Mutton for the Style Not Age Challenge Cosy Autumn Coats

I'm wearing the coat over a Hope burgundy velour skirt, Ted Baker jumper and Kettlewell silver scarf. The vegan lace-up brogue boots, new, are from Marks and Spencer. Bag from Mulberry.

Gail Hanlon from style blog Is This Mutton in burgundy velvet coat from Joe Browns

Now let's see what my blogger friends came up.  Hilda, from Over the Hilda, who devised the coats challenge, is wearing a Michael Kors coat she found in TK Maxx.  It's a very warm coat with a hood, like a blanket she says, so Hilda is obviously expecting a cold snap or lots of outdoor dining  (if another lockdown beckons, hopefully not!). Her green boots are from Primark/Penneys.  Her leggings are by Spanx.  

Emma from Style Splash is also wearing a coat she snapped up at a bargain price. Originally from Marks & Spencer, she had seen the coat in a charity shop but it wasn't the right size. Then it popped up on eBay for £10.  It's a very desirable coat with its contrasting leopard print collar. 

Emma has layered it over a leopard print top from SilkFred and some velvet trousers from Very. She says a bad hair day led to her wearing the velvet turban style hat with pearl embellishments. 

Jacqui from Mummabstylish can't wait to wear her new padded coat from Marks and Spencer with its fashionable press stud fastenings. It looks great with her houndstooth bag and will certainly keep her warm during chilly shopping expeditions and lunches with friends.

Anna from Anna's Island Style is wearing a pre- loved coat from Kew 159, dress from  Topshop, shoes by Office and sunglasses by Radley London. Her blue sky shows us that autumn/fall is not always too cold, so perfect for a lightweight coat.

I hope we've inspired you with our coat choices! More pics on each of the blogs. See you on Wednesday for #WowOnWednesday.

Sharing this post with: On Mondays We Link Up at Glass of Glam, Top of the World Style at High Latitude Style, Chic & Stylish at Mummabstylish, #SpreadTheKindness at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Thursday Moda at Elegance and Mommyhood, Turning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish,  Style with a Smile  at StylesplashTFF at Doused in PinkLizzie in Lace Confident Twosday at IDoDeclaireRena at Fine WhateverFabulous Fridays at Lucy Bertoldi, #Neverendingstyle at The Grey Brunette #TheWednesdayLinkUp at Claire Justine, Fancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion StyleHappiness is Homemade at Life as a Leo Wife 


Stay in the loop: follow Is This Mutton? on Bloglovin or Feedspot. I post extra goodies on the Is This Mutton? Facebook page. Check out the Is This Mutton? Pinterest boards, including boards on other bloggers in fab outfits plus beauty, jewellery, hairstyles and fashion picks. Is This Mutton? is also on Twitter and Instagram.


Wednesday, 20 October 2021

Capsule Dressing Made Easy - and Link-Up

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton-the over-50s style blog-in Chloe jacket, v neck top, infinity scarf and belt by Kettlewell and Cavendish skirt by Boden

Dear friends. I was very shocked when my winter clothes came down from the loft a couple of weeks ago. Four large bags, and there were already quite a few winter clothes already taking up space in my wardrobe, Mr Mutton's wardrobe, and the downstairs coats cupboard.  

Over the last few months I've been building a colourful wardrobe of clothes from Kettlewell in my colours  (Winter), which should last me for several years.  It now takes up one half of my wardrobe.  And Mr Mutton then issued an edict that my coats Had To Go.  From his wardrobe, at least.

Friday, 15 October 2021

Turning the Beauty Industry Upside Down with 3 Sticks

Forever You Beauty's Natural Glow Trio as tested by blogger Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton. Image copyright Is This Mutton 2021

A young British company is poised to revolutionize the way older women apply make-up. Instead of offering the usual products aimed at covering up the signs of aging, Forever You's range aims to enhance our natural beauty without concealing or erasing. 

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Finding Your Own Style - and Link Up

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in black and white with a splash of red

Dear friends. Today we're talking style personalities.  What's yours?  You may have had a consultation and discovered your prescription,  or you may have discovered what works for you over time.  It's a good thing to know because it saves you time and costly mistakes.  


Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Now for Good News - and Link-Up

 Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon in purple beanie and sweater from Kettlewell Colours

Hello dear friends.  This post is a last minute substitution. My original post focused on how hard it is being a woman right now,  in the context of a serving London police officer having murdered a 33 year old woman who was walking home. 


Tuesday, 5 October 2021

Sentence a Day: September 2021: Ducks, Pansies, Covid Scare

 A peaceful scene at Connaught Water, Eping Forest, with ducks

Weds 1 September

Mum not feeling well, thinks it may be Covid. Very worrying because although she's double vaccinated, she's 89 and very independent. She's been on the bus a few times and people aren't wearing face coverings.

Busy day.  Urban walk. Kettlewell's new range landed and ordered a few pieces in new colours carmine red and deep amethyst. 

Thurs 2 Sept

Woke up 4.30 worried about mum. Spoke to her. She has v croaky voice, bit breathless and has lost taste/smell. But otherwise sounds OK. I asked my brother to drop a Covid test round, which his wife did. 

Fri 3 September

Mum did test but was evasive when I asked if it was positive. Did a forest walk but mind too preoccupied to listen to podcasts. 

Sat 4 Sept

Mum did another test and admitted both were positive. She couldn't face up to it yesterday. I wanted to go down and stay with her but she was adamant I shouldn't. 

Short lived blue sky.  Did 5 mile walk wearing new sunglasses for 1st time.  Went to Epping and garden centre for compost and pansies. Watched film Let him go (Kevin Costner) - 6 out of 10. Dinner: lamb tagine

On a regular walk in Epping Forest: Gail Hanlon from style blog Is This Mutton

Sun 5 Sept

Dropped J off at High Beech for his session with the marathon runners.  He's leading a group of newbies each week but doesn't want to cover the long distances, so giving him a lift cuts out some of the mileage. Mum feeling a lot better. Thank God. 

Mon 6 Sept

Hot weather finally materialised. Did walk in forest. Started researching trips to the Northern Lights for my sabbatical month of November. My first choice, Sweden,  isn't admitting those from the UK.  Likely to get worse as the Covid case rates increase.  Reluctant to book anything. Dinner: spaghetti and meatballs

Tues 7 Sept

Remembering my brother, whose nickname was Snurgie Boy, who died in 2014 aged 60. Hot weather today. Did walk 4 .4 miles around Connaught Water, a man-made pond in Epping Forest.  Weeded and planted pansies. Dinner was Thai curry.

Weds 8 Sept

Very hot again! Booked car in for inspection. Busy day work wise but lots of noise with trees being pruned. Dinner: Quiche and salad

Thursday 9 Sept

Workout.  Cloudy, been raining in night. Three-day heatwave has ended. Ordered 2022 year planner.  Bought these dwarf gladioli. Dinner: Chilli. 

Friday 10 Sept 

Mum tested negative.  Big relief. Quiet day. Fish n chips for dinner.  5 mile walk, cloudy. Couple heavy showers during day

Sat 11 September

Cloudy with sunny intervals.  Went to two local shops which used to have collection boxes for the food banks, but both have gone. So did the walk to Tesco to drop off some supplies.  In the garden re-sited a deutzia shrub and planted salvia Amistad.  Watching The Morning Show series 1 again, to get ready for the new season. Dinner: macaroni cheese.

Sun 12 September

Fairly bright.  Wrote blog post. Left a box of stuff outside with the label "Help yourselves." Everything was taken.  Walked over to Rachel and Sean's for lunch, which was shepherds pie. 

Mon 13 September

Sean, whom we saw yesterday, has tested positive. Oh dear. We both did tests which were negative.  Dinner: spaghetti bolognese. 

Tues 14 September

Terrible weather.  Tested negative again before breakfast. Drove 25 miles to Jodie's to have hair done.  Rachel had a negative PCR test. Dinner: falafels and salad.   

Hair in foils for Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon

Weds 15 September

Did a forest trail 4.2 miles. Fairly busy. My new 2022 organiser arrived from Fraser and Parsley. Dinner: Chicken coconut bowl, Cauliflower cheese

Thurs 16 September

Workout. Elton John postponed tour until 2023. We were supposed to be going at the end of November.  Had made all the arrangements for Liverpool. Aargh. 

Friday 17 September

J not keen to go to Liverpool without the concert and unfortunately tickets not refundable.  Sunny day, did forest walk.

Sat 18 September

 J accompanied me on part of my 5 miler via Yates Meadow. Sunny morning.  Then did housework.  Booked a 6 day stay at a new Fit Farms location in Devon, during my sabbatical month of November. Saw the 1st episode of new series of The Morning Show.  Slow start. 

Sun 19 September

Put a box of books outside for people to help themselves, but only one was taken! Did some product photography and wrote blog post after dropping J off at High Beech.  Roast chicken. Started When the Dust Settles  (Danish thriller). 

Mon 20 Sept

Forest walk. Saw a school photo being taken in one of the car parks near the forest. Air purifier came.  Going to use it in the dining room when we have a lot of people round at Christmas. 

Tues 21 Sept

Lovely misty walk with sun rising. New smart meter installed.  Saw John's brother who parked on our drive while Yvonne was at the opticians.

Weds 22 September

Autumn equinox.  All set for walk then remembered I had a 9am meeting with APAC.  Meant to do a walk later in the day but it never happened. The days getting darker sooner means I get to see the solar lights coming on in the garden. 

Thursday 23 September

Workout. Drove to Fulbourn near Cambridge to meet a former colleague for lunch. Sunny and warm. Very proud to be featured in Mummabystylish in the "At home with" series. 

Fri 24 September

Did walk, location units are back in the forest.  Had appointment with dental hygienist but when I turned up they said I didn't. When I got home I found the appointment card which showed I was right.

Sat 25 September

Did short walk with J around golf course. Cloudy.  Did shoot for our bloggers' challenge, Pretty in Pink.  Relaxing day. Watched film The Admission, 6 out of 10

Sun 26 September

Workout. Didn't do any blog photography but wrote a couple of posts. Roast beef

Mon 27 September

Wet walk!  Supposed to be going in the office twice this week as it has reopened properly:  Tuesday and Thursday. There are incentives to lure us back: free food from various trucks, free ice-cream. 

Tues 28 September

Supposed to be in office but petrol crisis caused by shortage of HGV drivers makes it difficult, as it's a 110 mile trip each time. A Huff Post freelance got in touch to ask for my views on beauty industry prejudice.  Happy to oblige.

Weds 29 September

Secured a Xmas Eve online shopping slot! Probably the first time ever. And Davina McCall liked one of my tweets. Amazing. John saw the small cattle on his run in the forest. I haven't seen them for ages. 

Thurs 30 Sept

Didn't go to office, still haven't been able to get petrol. Did longer walk than usual to try to see the small cattle (didn't). Had to hurry to get back in time for a 10am meeting. The pansies I bought earlier this month are looking good, at the front of the house. 

That was my September. October and November are birthday months with lots of activities, so come back for a more exciting account in four weeks' time! 

Sharing this post with:#Linkup on the Edge at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Rena at Fine WhateverFabulous Fridays at Lucy Bertoldi, #TheWeekendLinkUp at Claire Justine


Stay in the loop: follow Is This Mutton? on Bloglovin or Feedspot. I post extra goodies on the Is This Mutton? Facebook page. Check out the Is This Mutton? Pinterest boards, including boards on other bloggers in fab outfits plus beauty, jewellery, hairstyles and fashion picks. Is This Mutton? is also on Twitter and Instagram.


Wednesday, 29 September 2021

September Favourites: Books, TV, Podcasts - and Link-Up


Two adults eating popcorn and watching TV with dog. Photo by Andres Ayrton from Pexels

Dear friends. Another month has flown by and it's time for my review of September's TV, books and podcasts. Highlights of the month:  Manhunt, Dr Death series 3 (podcast), and books Magpie and The Dark.


Another lean month to be honest. We started a couple of dramas / comedies that looked promising but interest soon waned. 

Manhunt Series 2: a good crime series on ITV  

(ITV Hub, Britbox;  season 1 is available on Prime)

Martin Clunes as DCI Colin Sutton in ITV's Manhunt

This is the second series following the real life solving of puzzling criminal cases by Detective Chief Inspector Colin Sutton.  It's old-fashioned, detail obsessed policing, nothing to do with the world of Line of Duty and its "covert intelligence sources" and raids by armed police.  

Martin Clunes gives a wonderfully subtle and nuanced performance as the low-key DCI. In series 1, we saw how hours and hours were spent studying CCTV to find the van used by Levi Bellfield, the man responsible for killing Amelie Delagrange, Marsha McDonnell and Milly Dowler in the early 2000’s.

In series 2, Sutton, nearing retirement,  is brought in to review the case of the Night Stalker, a terrifying serial rapist and burglar who terrorised the elderly of south London.  His crimes had gone undetected for over 15 years and police were pinning all their hopes on finding a match for DNA found at the scene of one of the crimes. Sutton adopts a different strategy to catch the criminal, including a plea for a huge increase in resourcing for three nights of detailed surveillance.  

Episode 1 was a little slow as it set the scene and showed the quiet animosity to which Sutton was subjected, but it soon picked up pace and I found it utterly gripping.

The Hunt for a Killer  (BBC iPlayer)

In a similar vein was this Swedish drama, also about a real-life criminal case. In March 1989, Sweden was rocked by the murder of 10-year-old Helen Nilsson, in Hörby in the country's south. The case remained unsolved for 16 years. Hunt for a Killer follows the unwavering journey of police officers Per-Åke Åkesson and Monica Olhed who led the investigation team that eventually, against all odds, found Helen's killer.

Again, there's no glamour here: police often pursue the wrong leads, the case gets sidelined, a senior officer seems determined to block the initiatives of Per-Åke to solve the case.  Finally it is DNA and a laboratory in Birmingham (England) that unlocks the killer. But even so, police have just a few days to pull together a short list of suspects for DNA testing, and catch the killer, before resourcing is pulled. 

The Morning Show (Apple TV)

In preparation for the new series we reprised the first season to remind ourselves of the plot. Jennifer Aniston and Reece Witherspoon return for more battles in the TV studio. The first season felt new and refreshing, with the 2019 drama revolving around a Harvey Weinstein type plot, with senior executives eventually exposed on air for ignoring a culture of misogyny and sexual misconduct. 

Series 2 - based on the two episodes we've seen so far - is a bit lost, not sure which direction it's going in. Things have changed a lot at the TV network, and in an unlikely turn of affairs, it's decided to bring back Alex (Jennifer Aniston) as co-host for The Morning Show.  The gloves are off as Bradley (Witherspoon) has a showdown with Alex and makes it clear she will no longer be treated as her lackey.  It all seems a bit old-fashioned, diva TV presenters on a traditional TV channel. I have heard the series gets into a groove by episode 3, so fingers crossed. 

Tried but didn't like it 

Back to Life (BBC iPlayer): comedy drama. When Miri Matteson returns home after eighteen years, can she integrate back into her old life? With a terrible event from her past hanging over her, it won’t be easy.  Mr Mutton was unconvinced after the first episode, I would have given it longer.  

Post Mortem (Netflix). This black comedy from Norway, set in a funeral directors in a small town where no-one ever dies, initially intrigued me. I loved its quirkiness. But upon discovering it was about vampires  (I suppose the clue was "no-one ever dies") we quickly lost interest. Vampires to me are Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee. No exceptions.

Podcast Reviews

Making the Cut (Entale Studios)

It's always fun to discover a podcast that's been going for a while, but had escaped the Mutton radar. And when I first started to listen to Making the Cut (nothing to do with the TV series I reviewed last month), I had no idea Davina McCall was one of the presenters.  

I was initially attracted by an episode where the presenters were reviewing a Lake District stay which included e-biking and zipwires.  I went through a whole episode without realising the presenters were Davina and her friend and hairdresser, Michael Douglas. 

It's a rich seam of entertainment and very enjoyable too: each week the couple chat away, like the old friends they are, giving us advice and tips on all sorts of topics ranging from tubing mascara in the very first episode to travel features, TV reviews, decorating and pets' yoga.

Dr Death (Wondery)

Each series of Dr Death tells the story of a real-life doctor who endangered the lives of patients for years before being apprehended.  It's a sober indictment of the medical industry where managers and doctors often join forces to protect the guilty. Series 3 tells the story of the charismatic and handsome Paolo Macchiarini, a pioneering thoracic surgeon, inventor of a new technique and generally feted wherever he goes. 

For the first few episodes the focus is on his relationship with Benita, who is creating a documentary about his life saving surgery.   They start seeing each other once filming has finished and become engaged. It's soon clear that Paolo is living in a fantasy world. He undertakes the organization of their wedding but things are starting to unravel, and at one point he promises Benita that the Pope will officiate over their Rome wedding, even though Paolo is divorced and Benita is not Catholic. 

The focus eventually shifts back to Paolo's medical misdemeanors, and an appalling cover-up by a prestigious Swedish medical institute, even after four doctors there had supplied proof that Paolo's surgeries were far from life saving and had not been fully tested.

I was interested to see that Dr Death is now a TV series with Christian Slater and Alec Baldwin, but it's on Starzplay which would be yet another subscription, so we won't be watching it. 

Book Reviews

Magpie by Elizabeth Day

I was 40% into Magpie, a psychological thriller by the creator of the  Failure podcast series, and I was thinking crossly it had been seriously over-hyped.  A famiiar trope was going on:  the successful, loved-up couple with a pretty house,  their smug existence suddenly disrupted by a stranger "who wants their life."

Fortunately I stuck with it because in the blink of an eye, the narrative changed and it had suddenly become a whole lot more dark and complex. It has a very strong "middle," but towards the end it suddenly becomes benign and soft again, and the twist I was expecting at the end never materialised. Disappointing. 

1979 by Val McDermid

This had resonance for me on many levels. Val McDermid, the queen of crime fiction, is a former journalist who trained on the same newspaper as me. And 1979 was the year I entered journalism.

1979 is the first in a new series of novels featuring journalist Allie Burns. She works on a Scottish daily where the pace is certainly a bit faster than the sedate little Plymouth weekly that Val and I worked on. As one of very few women, Allie is constantly patronized and under-estimated by the hard-bitten males working on the paper. 

I enjoyed the nostalgia fest, and in particular the playlist at the back of the book, but I found the story a bit far fetched. 

The Dark by Emma Haughton

An Antarctic research station, totally inaccessible for several months of the year,  is the setting for this tense and gripping thriller.  Kate is flown in as an emergency doctor, after her predecessor was killed in a tragic accident. As the small team settles in for winter, Kate starts wondering about what actually happened to the doctor. She starts to do some digging. Then there's a murder, with no chance of police being able to attend, and the knowledge that the killer is living among them.

The writing is sloppy at times, lots of lazy stereotypes (the lesbian who wears dungarees, the Sikh who makes a good curry). Kate is an irritating heroine, addicted to prescription painkillers and and slow to cotton on. 

Most of the tension is supplied by the setting and claustrophobic conditions, but it finally becomes a nail biter in the last stages of the book. 

Broken Greek by Pete Paphides

Broken Greek is the childhood memoir of music critic Pete Paphides, whose family came to settle in Birmingham when he was very young.  Although he's a good 10-15 years younger than me, it's a wonderful return to the 70s and 80s and in particular to the music of the era. 

He reminded me of a few things I had forgotten about, such as  Dial a Disc, where you rang a phone number for 2p a minute and an unnamed song was played down the line to you.

Paphides has an encyclopedic knowledge of the music of that era. At first the lists of records, lists of what was in the top 20, and the analysis behind song words, was a delight. But by the last chapters it had become tedious. 

I loved the reminders of how young kids often choose records:  they become fixated with the singer rather than the actual song.  In Paphides' case, he was often mentally choosing a foster parent in case his parents left him, and became obsessed with singers who had kind faces like Agnetha and Frida, one of the women in Brotherhood of Man, and the Barron Knights. The story of when he actually met the latter group is toe curling but fortunately has a happy ending. 

It's also a poignant and sad memoir, because his Greek Cypriot father never got over his desire to return to his homeland once he had made his fortune from fish and chips.  When it became clear this was not going to happen, and his sons didn't want to live there anyway, his father became morose and no longer wanted to go back for long summers. 

The real tragedy for me was Paphides' mother.  She started off a talented seamstress but ended up a slave to the fish and chip shop.  During the long summers when her husband took the boys abroad, she managed the chip shop almost single handed for 12 hours a day.  And when she had to have a hysterectomy, her husband was entirely unsympathetic and expected her to be back at work within days.  

Well, that's my round-up for September.  As always, I'd love to hear your views and recommendations in the comments. 

Sharing this post with:  Beauty by Miss L, On Mondays We Link Up at Glass of Glam, Top of the World Style at High Latitude Style, Chic & Stylish at Mummabstylish, #SpreadTheKindness at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Thursday Moda at Elegance and Mommyhood, Turning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish,  Style with a Smile  at StylesplashTFF at Doused in PinkLizzie in Lace Confident Twosday at IDoDeclaireRena at Fine WhateverFabulous Fridays at Lucy Bertoldi, #Neverendingstyle at The Grey Brunette #TheWednesdayLinkUp at Claire Justine, Fancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion StyleStyle Six at This Blonde's Shopping Bag Happiness is Homemade at Life as a Leo Wife 

#WowOnWednesday Link-Up

Now it's time for #WowOnWednesday, the weekly link-up where readers can find new blogs to read, and bloggers can find new readers. 

Last Week's Favourites (Most Clicked)

"Autumn Planning" by Michelle from Fifty & Fab shows how September has become the new January for radical overhauls to our everyday routines. Michelle has a new blogging location and is putting into practice some great tips from a life coach. 

"Fashion over Forty:  Too Old for a Tiered Mini Skirt?" asks Ellie from Elliebelle's Corner. When you look as cute (and youthful) as this, the answer is No! Never too old.

Is This Mutton Favourite

"A Whole Lotta Seventies Styling in One Outfit" from Catherine at Not Dressed as Lamb.  You can always rely on Catherine for masterful pattern mixing and bold colours. 

For More Mutton 

Stay in the loop: follow Is This Mutton? on Bloglovin or Feedspot. I post extra goodies on the Is This Mutton? Facebook page. Check out the Is This Mutton? Pinterest boards, including boards on other bloggers in fab outfits plus beauty, jewellery, hairstyles and fashion picks. Is This Mutton? is also on Twitter and Instagram.

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Monday, 27 September 2021

Pretty in Pink: Style Not Age Challenge

Gail Hanlon from over 50s style blog Is This Mutton in an all-pink outfit

Pretty in Pink is this month's Style Not Age Challenge, set by Anna from Anna's Island Style. This was music to my ears because I love pink and have quite a lot of it. It's a very flattering colour on all women, if you find the right shades. 


Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Back to the Office - and Link Up


Over 50s blogger Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in red and beige

Dear friends: quite a mixed post this week. I'm covering the imminent return to the office;  a wonderful pre-Christmas season gift to ourselves, and a quick beauty update that includes my lash and brow trial, inspired by Catherine from Not Dressed as Lamb. 

Wednesday, 15 September 2021

Find the Best Earrings for Your Face Shape - and Link-Up


Greetings, dear friends.  Earrings, like shoes, are a kind gift to ourselves. They're a way of wearing fashion, they don't rebuke us for getting bigger or thinner, and they add some sizzle to the most ordinary of outfits.


Wednesday, 8 September 2021

Taking On the Instagram Algorithms - and Link-Up

Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon wearing Blue Jewel and Ganzi Purple with Glowbeads

I've spent the last week having some fun with Instagram:  seeing if I could play "the algorithms." I'm not really very active on IG normally. I post around two feed posts a week, and Stories most days, although usually about my forest walks.  But I do visit IG frequently to see what all the lovely ladies I follow are up to. I had 3,197 followers in February and am now at 3,578. It's a very slow slog!

Monday, 6 September 2021

Sentence a Day: August 2021

 Yates Meadow in Epping Forest partially mown in August

Covid Update: We're out of lockdown in the UK. People are slowly trickling back to their offices, masks are mostly worn voluntarily, and the social distancing rule is no more. It's still challenging to go abroad on holiday, with hotel quarantine required if you visit a tier 3 country.  The number of Covid cases is still very high in the UK but with the majority vaccinated, it is mostly among young people and not causing a critical number of hospitalizations. Yet.


Friday, 3 September 2021

Friday Favourites: August 2021: Vigil, Underbelly, Fearne Cotton and Many More

Wearing headphones on a country walk, Is This Mutton's Gail Hanlon with her monthly digest of podcast, TV and book recommendations

Dear friends - welcome to Friday Favourites, my roundup of podcasts, TV and books in August. Once again I found TV a bit underwhelming, although it perked up later in August with The Chair and Vigil. But let's start with books.  This time I'm scoring the books read on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being utterly amazing. 


Wednesday, 1 September 2021

Monday, 30 August 2021

Statement Sleeves: Style Not Age Challenge

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in lilac blouse with statement sleeves from River Island and purple trousers

A great theme this month for the Style Not Age Challenge: Statement Sleeves! They can sometimes be tricky when they dangle in the soup, but who doesn't love a statement sleeve?  The challenge was set by Emma from Stylesplash - see her interpretation in a moment.

Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Experiments with Colour and Tulle - and Link-Up

 Over-50s style blogger Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton undertakes a colour challenge to create an outfit based on cerise pink, acid yellow and white
Hello dear friends. Hope you are all well. My thoughts this week have been with the stricken people of Afghanistan. I hope that common sense will prevail and they will get longer to leave the country. Of course, not everybody will be able to leave, which is the biggest tragedy. I fear for the women and all the progress made, but remain confident that their bright light and spirits will prevail.


Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Lockdown: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly - and Link-Up

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in high summer garden, wearing all-white with a Beetroot wrap and gunmetal wedges,

Normality is returning in most countries around the world, after months of lockdowns and sanctions to deal with Covid-19. A lot of the pages in the UK papers are devoted to reports on other countries too, and Australia is going through a difficult time, as is Israel. 


Wednesday, 11 August 2021

An Explosion of Colour - and Link-Up

 Which green outfit did Gail Hanlon wear to the first ever Kettlewell Colour Club London meet-up?

Left: what I wore;  centre - what I nearly wore;  right - what I wished I'd worn 

People strolling in London's Regents Park on Saturday were benmused to see a large group of very colourfully dressed women sitting on picnic blankets near the bandstand.

This was the first gathering in London of some of the members of the Kettlewell Colour Club, a group now numbering around 7,000 globally on Facebook.


Wednesday, 4 August 2021

Is "Grandmother" an Insult? And Link-Up

 Over 60 style blogger Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in Chinese blue floral skirt worn with white top and infinity scarf from Kettlewell Colours

There's been a lot in the UK papers this week about a woman who took exception to colleagues mentioning her grandmother status.  She said she loved being a grandmother. What she was protesting about was the implied ageism in the term.  She was overruled by an internal grievance hearing and then by an appeal, but the judge at an industrial tribunal has ruled that the description of her amounted to “detrimental” and “less favourable” treatment because it drew attention to her age.


Friday, 30 July 2021

Friday Favourites, July: Books, Podcasts


Image by Bernd Everding from Pixabay

Greetings all and welcome to the July edition of book, TV and podcast reviews. Hardly any TV again, but not for want of trying. There's just nothing new that's floating my particular boat. But I know most of you like the book reviews best, so let's launch into them.


Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Hill Walking in a Heatwave - and Link Up

 Is This Mutton's Gail Hanlon describes a Lake District holiday in the north of England: hill walking in hot temperatures, gourmet cuisine and a capsule evening wardrobe trial

It was blazingly hot last week in the UK - and there was Mr Mutton and me, hill climbing in the Lake District, in the north of England. 

On the first day we foolishly tackled a very strenuous route with a lot of ascent, and boy was it tough. Even Mr Mutton, who is as fit as a flea, had aching muscles the next day.  After that, we chose routes that were more gentle. One of the best ones started in the Whinlatter Forest, where the trees gave us some cool shade. I loved the different shades of heather. 


Monday, 26 July 2021

Jackets for July: Style Not Age Challenge


Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon in Bright Violet Rachel jacket from Kettlewell for the latest Style Not Age Challenge, Jackets for July. Worn with a lime green tee and white ankle skimmer trousers

Welcome to the latest Style Not Age Challenge, set this month by Jacqui of Mummabstylish. Jacqui chose "Jackets for July." After the recent heatwave you may be wondering if jackets are needed in July, but temperatures are often low in the early morning and fall in the evening, so you often do need a light jacket or cardigan.

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