"". May 2022 | Is This Mutton?

Fashion for the over 50s with books and beauty

Search This Blog

Monday 30 May 2022

Birthstone Beauties: Style Not Age Challenge

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in a blue and white outfit inspired by her birthstone, blue topaz

 Dear friends. Welcome to the latest Style Not Age Challenge, where five intrepid blogging friends take turns to set a prompt each month that inspires an outfit.

This month it's the turn of birthday girl Jacqui, who chose Birthstone Beauties:  outfits inspired by our birth stone.


Friday 27 May 2022

Wednesday 25 May 2022

Summer Bottoms

 And #WowOnWednesday

Is This Mutton the blog for stylish and sassy over-50s on how to choose the right basics to make your summer dressing a breeze

I bet that got your attention. The bottoms I'm referring to are skirts, shorts and cropped trousers that will make or break summer for us.

Most years, I have a few old items, some of which I was never very keen on because of the fit, or the material, and I grudgingly make do. This year I had a whole new approach.

Wednesday 18 May 2022

I can Take the Despair - it's the Hope I Can't Stand

 And #WowOnWednesday Link-Up

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton on a long running restructuring saga at work

Dear friends.  The title of today's post is a memorable quote from a very funny film, Clockwise starring John Cleese.

It's the reason my post is late.  Yesterday I didn't get round to writing the post I had been planning.  I had been expecting that my application for voluntary redundancy would be accepted. I'd been optimistic that the exciting plans I've been making for retirement would start falling into place.

Wednesday 11 May 2022

Style Chat and #WoW

 Showing the difference that a bright lipstick and accessories can make, Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton

Dear friends. I've been taking part in a challenge where you show a basic outfit and then add accessories.  It shows what a huge difference a few choice pieces can make, in either giving your outfit a bit more style, or taking something from day to night time.

Friday 6 May 2022

April in Review: A Trip to Devon, A New Baby and More

 All the fun of the fair for London blogger Is This Mutton in April

Fri 1 April

Day off. Had hair done. Watched first episode Slow Horses (read my review)

Sat 2 April

Walk, 6 miles. Forgot to wear Fitbit. V cold. Went to a party for granddaughter Rosie's third birthday party, held in a coffee bar.  Three little friends from nursery came. Watched 1st episode Hacks.

A birthday party for three year olds, a social event this April for London blogger Is This Mutton

 Sun Apr 3

Cold, sunny intervals.  Did a photoshoot of 4 outfits based on a red cardigan.  Roast lamb for lunch. 

Mon April 4

Dreary and cold. J dropped one of his bikes off in Chelmsford for repairs. He cleaned my car. I got petrol and  a few groceries. J will be fending for himself (and Molly) for a few days, while I go down to Devon to see my Mum.

Tues April 6

Did early walk. Overcast. Attended a severance session  (we are in the 45 day consultation period at work; everyone in marketing is at risk of redundancy).  Left home at 11.30 to go to Plymouth.  Got there 4.30pm. Took a Simnel cake from Fortnum & Mason and we had a slice - delicious.

Weds April 7

Raining, windy. Went to one of our favourite places, Buckfast Abbey, for lunch. Had a yummy pasty from Crunch of Devon  (I consider myself a bit of a pasty conoisseur). We always light a candle for my brother. 

Back in London,  EV charger was being installed in the porch. The car was ordered last August but there is still no delivery date. 

Thurs April 8 

Did walk and saw Michael's grave. He was a baby who died in 1944. Flowers are still placed there. Also saw ribbons for Ukraine wrapped around a road sign. 

Took Mum to Otter garden centre.  I bought a heuchera and tiarella plus nerine bulbs. She bought a couple of roses and dianthus. We had a real laugh at one of her Malapropisms - "It's all water off a duck's bridge."

Fri April 9 

Raining am. Took mum for 4th jab after I booked it with a local pharmacy.  Originally, she was offered locations which were drop-in only, and difficult to get to without a car.  

While she was being jabbed I rummaged in two charity shops and got a green top originally from Banana Republic.  Then we went into town. Had lunch M&S, avocado on sourdough.  Got some earrings.  Started to pour with rain as we walked to bus stop. When we got back, I spent some time scanning some old photos.

Sat April 10th

Sunny start for my journey home.  Left 9.50, home 3.50. J was picking up another of his bikes. Couple of deliveries waiting, handbag and vitamins. Clematis Montana Rubens (x3) in bud and will soon burst into flower. Spurs on so watched The Split on tablet. 

Sun April 11

Lovely day, warm and sunny. Did walk, saw longhorns on Plains.  Did shopping at Tesco and M&S. Grand Prix was 6am, Lewis 4th. Roast beef.

Mon April 12

Did a workout.  Back to work  (from home). Lovely day, bit windy,  washing dried fast outside.  Was planning to go to Cambridge tomorrow as our account director from the ad agency in New York was going to be in, but she has Covid and and there's another petrol shortage

Tues April 12 

Walk, no cows. They move around so often I don't see them for days. Warm enough to take jacket off. Bumped into J who was running.  Quite busy work-wise. Had forgotten to take pics or write a blog post for tomorrow.  Managed to whip one up using prompt 10 on the 10th. Started The Gloaming.

Weds April 13

Planned workout but had meeting on which redundancy pool I'm in. Then got caught up in work.

Thurs April 14

Beautiful day. Walk, Yates, saw cows.  Google tells me my blog's "unparsable data issues" are resolved.  Phew. Meeting with finance advisor. 

Good Friday April 15

Day off for Good Friday. Beautiful day. Walked to Body Balance.  Haven't done it for a month,  legs aching afterwards! Did some gardening. 

Saturday April 16

Cloudy then sun came out. Bagged up more winter clothes to go in the attic.  Scheduled tweets. Went to garden centre and got a lupin, phlox, scabious and two dianthus. Then planted everything. Watched film Dune. 5 out of 10.

Easter Sunday April 17

Walk, Connaught Water.  Saw cows, still sitting down. Watched Easter service on TV. Had an Easter egg hunt for Rosie in the garden, then we all went to the Larkshall for lunch. Had roast chicken, huge.  Stayed sunny. 

Easter Monday April 18

Walk, Yates, horse n pony. Weather still quite good. Spent long time weeding rose bed. Watered roses. They will be late this year because I should have pruned them sooner  (did it in Feb). 

Tuesday April 19 

Didn't go into office.  Sold a couple of Kettlewell tops on the FB site.

Weds April 20 

Had a marketing All Hands for the latest on the redundancy situation. No clarity yet on who's going. 

Thurs April 21 

Yoga, not my usual 8.15am class. Tried a later  class, teacher was on holiday so was usual teacher, which was nice. 

Fri April 22 

Aching from yoga. Busy at work sorting out a new messaging look and feel for the big event I campaign manage, Embedded World.  Took some pics of clematis in full bloom.

Sat April 23 

Forced myself to walk, didn't really fancy it. Funfair has arrived (top pic).  Remember how excited I used to get when I was 15. Rejoined Ancestry (14 day trial again) and uploaded old pics from Mum's. Nice to put faces against her grandparents and an uncle. 

Sun April 24

Sunny intervals,  breezy. Took tripod to Larkswood to take pics of bluebells. Roast beef. Got a few containers ready for summer bedding

Mon April 25 

Did a stretch class at the gym. Bit shocked to realise that although my weight has stayed the same, waist measurement is back to what it was pre boot camp in Nov. Need to earn my carbs!!

Tues April 26 

Busy day - had to prepare a slide deck for a senior exec at short notice. Also had 4 hour planning session which used to be a couple of days in a nice location before Covid (Paris, Miami). Did walk pm. The forest seems totally different at a later time - the lighting and atmosphere.

Weds April 27 

New garden post live on blog.  J's daughter R went in labour overnight. Baby Olive born. R had tough time, kept in hospital overnight. No visitors allowed.  

Thurs April 28

Fairly busy today. Those in the pool I'm in for demand gen jobs  (11 people) had a meeting to ask questions which was a bit strange, and muted. Not many questions. Fox has dug up new clematis.  Lovely pics baby. R in hospital until tomorrow. 

Fri April 29

Cloudy, cold. R out of hospital.  J looked after Olive to allow R & S to have short nap. Here's the proud Granddad.

A new baby in the family!

Sat April 30

Likely to be the only sunny day this bank holiday, so got up early, did a 4 mile walk and then went to  Epping & garden centre. Got lots bedding plus 4 auriculas (for first time), and 2 dianthus. Didn't plant any: got distracted dealing with what looks like ears of corn in the flower beds, and weeding the drive. 

Sharing this post with:#SpreadTheKindness  and #Linkup on the Edge at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random MusingsRena at Fine WhateverTalent Sharing Tuesdays at Scribbling Boomer, Link Up Pot Pourri and Traffic Jam Weekend at My Bijou Life


Stay in the loop: follow Is This Mutton? on Bloglovin or Feedspotwhere Is This Mutton was voted #3 in the top 10 fashion blogs over 50. 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 4 May 2022

Bluebells, Bouquets and Brickbats - and #WoW

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in Larks Wood, Chingford, a natural bluebell wood

The annual photos in a bluebell wood have become a Mutton tradition, but this year the wood has changed. 

Normally we take photos in a "secret" bluebell wood in Epping Forest. But I discovered last year, on one of my urban walks, that there is a tiny bluebell wood just off a main road on the way to Tesco.  And it's much quieter than the other wood, which is not a very well kept secret. 

Is This Mutton's annual bluebell wood fashion shoot. Gail Hanlon in Electric Blue jacket and paisley scarf from Kettlewell Colours

I took the pictures in Larks Wood with a tripod, and hardly anyone passed by.  The wood is a fragment left from when it was much bigger, years ago, but was then built on to provide an outdoor swimming pool, which Mr Mutton remembers using as a teen. 

The planting is different in this wood and it has more light, so the bluebells are taller.  They are still English bluebells and not their bigger Spanish cousins which have self seeded all over the gardens of the UK. 

To see my record of bluebell woods over the years, check out the hairstyles here

Outfit details for the bluebell wood:  Rachel jacket and belt in Electric Blue, V neck top in Powder Blue and paisley scarf, all from Kettlewell. Jeans from M&S  (nothing was gifted). 

Bouquets for April: A Bra and Some Beef 

Today I'm starting what will hopefully be a new monthly post:  Bouquets and Brickbats.  Bouquets are good things, brickbats are things  I'm not happy about.

My first bouquet is the John Lewis & Partners Anyday Anya bra.  I don't know about you, but I've often looked longingly at bralettes and thought they weren't for me, sadly. Or anyone with an ageing bust. But when I read reviews of the Anya, I saw that older women were indeed buying it and raving about it. 

It's not much of a looker but it's seam free, with no wiring or metal.  You pull it over your head. It's wonderfully soft and comfortable, and the shape it gives is fine  (there are removable pads).  The 36DDs are perfectly stable, no jiggling around.

Excuse the photo being out of focus! My camera has gone missing so this was a quick snap with the phone.

I now have the Anya in 3 colours (including a very pretty pink). At £18, it's a lot cheaper than some of the bras I used to buy. If you go over to JLP to take a look, you may see my review. I haven't used an affiliate link, just a link to the item. I haven't been asked to promote the item, I'm doing it off my own bat.

Another bouquet to Marks and Spencer for delivering the fool proof roast dinner. We have a roast dinner nearly every Sunday, and when it's lamb or beef it can be a hit and miss as to whether or not it's tough, even if you buy decent cuts. Mr Mutton then complains about a jaw work out. 

With the M&S Slow Cooked British Beef (and the Slow Cooked Tender Roast Lamb Shoulder), the meat has already been cooked, presumably sous vide, and all you have to do is heat it for 45 minutes.  Both varieties come with a delicious gravy. I know that Waitrose and Sainsbury's also have slow cooked ranges. It's a bit pricey, but well worth it for a delicious tender roast. M&S do others in the range, plus gluten free variants. 

Brickbats: Will Elton Ever Go Ahead? 

Back in 2019 I booked to see Elton John in November 2020, which at the time was more than a year away.  We all know what happened in 2020, and the event then got moved to November 2021.  I had booked to see him in Liverpool so we could make a weekend out of it, and I left it quite late to buy train tickets and book hotel rooms because with Covid you never knew what the lockdown situation would be.

Just a few days after I'd booked the tickets,  Elton announced he wouldn't be able to perform because of hip surgery.  Aaargh.  I was able to cancel the hotel, but not the train tickets  (which were, groan, first class)- I had left it so late there were no suitable second class options),  or the trip to Tate Liverpool, as these were non-refundable.

Anyway, I checked Ticketmaster last week, and was shocked to see the event has now moved to April 2023. And they won't give me my money back, even though I originally signed up for November.  We are likely to be doing the Coast to Coast walk in April.  

They do say we can sell the tickets, using their site, but you run the risk of only selling one, or both at a much lower price.  Back in 2019, pre-Covid, we didn't think about adding cancellation insurance or other extras.  Big lesson learned. 

(If anyone is interested, let me know!).

Two Final Thoughts

20% off at Youth and Earth! 

A few weeks ago I wrote about the energy and cell enhancing qualities of NMN, a NAD+ booster.  At the time I was gifted with a sample of NMN sublingual powder by Youth and Earth, an exciting company whose mission is to help us to maintain and sustain the fit and active lifestyle we want.  I've now bought my own supply, this time in tablet form  (plus their gluthione), and they are kindly offering you a 20% discount.  Simply use the code ISTHISMUTTON when you check out. 

Those Email Popups....

You may have noticed a popup asking you to register for emails to be alerted about a new post.  I hope you don't find this too irritating.  I was asked a few times if I could provide an email subscription.  You'll receive an email every time there's a new post on Is This Mutton. 

Have you visited a bluebell wood this year? Or are they not found in your neck of the woods?  Do let me know in the comments. 

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  and #Linkup on the Edge at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Turning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish,  Style with a Smile  at StylesplashTFF at Doused in Pink, Lizzie in Lace, Confident Twosday at IDoDeclaireRena at Fine WhateverFabulous Fridays at Lucy Bertoldi, #Neverendingstyle at The Grey BrunetteFancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion Style,  Weekday Wear Link-Up at Away from the Blue Sunday Showcase with Chez Mireille and Elegance and Mommyhood  (first Sunday of the month), Stylish Monday (first Monday of the month) with Ask Suzanne Bell, Talent Sharing Tuesdays at Scribbling Boomer, Link Up Pot Pourri and Traffic Jam Weekend at My Bijou Life

Now it's time for the #WowOnWednesday link-up. Bloggers/Instagrammers can find new readers, plus readers can find new blogs to read. I promote my favorite five posts on Facebook and Twitter every week, and feature the most clicked posts in Instagram Stories. 

Last Week's Favourites - Most Clicked

Suzy from The Grey Haired Brunette, with her honest review of Noracora dresses. Here she is in one of the two she liked. 

Fashionable Florals by Deb at Deb's World. Deb is an Australian blogger whose posts about life, fitness, books, family and cooking are always worth a read.  She has written for her a rare post about fashion. 

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Blog Design Created by pipdig