My Favourite Podcasts

Trust us, they’ll really speak to you…

Aerial shot of my Dad’s record room…considering creating a similar podcast snug for the new house!

If you haven’t got into the world of Podcasts…where have you been? They’re the perfect combination of radio and audiobook. L likes to have them on while cooking and running. E loves them on a long car journey. However you take yours, there’s a whole host of genres and styles to delve into. So, in true de-la-Haye Girls style, we thought we’d round up our current ear-worms in a handy little list!

  • If you loved Making A Murderer, then you’ll love Serial. Season 1 is our personal favourite, following the tragic murder of high school student, Hae Min Lee. This is the podcast that got us into podcasts! For further listening we recommend; Undisclosed, My Favourite Murder and Casefile.
  • If you love a horror movie, then Spooked will be music to your ears. The audio mixing on these non-fiction scary stories will have those hairs on the back of your neck quivering. I wouldn’t listen to this one before bed, though. Lore and The Battersea Poltergeist are also thrilling, thought not quite as terrifying.
  • If you’re missing your gal pals, then for your essential listening it has to be The High Low with Pandora Sykes and Dolly Alderton. This weekly conversation between these two, long-time friends covers both the high brow, (the arts, book recommendations, political movements) and the low brow, (pop culture and celebrity gossip). Already binged it? Give these three a try: Table Manners, The Guilty Feminist and Delicious Ways to Feel Better.
  • If you love to learn, try the fantastic Stuff You Missed In History Class. These factual episodes cover a range of topics from historical figures – the episode about Princess Alexandra of Bavaria is fascinating – to disaster stories (the recently solved Dyatlov Pass Incident is the stuff of nightmares). I’m also a big fan of This Podcast Will Kill You especially during this pandemic and Food For Thought with Rhiannon Lambert debunking wellbeing and nutritional myths.
  • If you wanna be an actor, The 98% is the podcast for you. Actors Katie and Alexa lift the curtain on those artists who don’t make up the top 2% of earners in our workforce. Those of us who are still hustling and working hard to make moves. It’s hilarious, honest and heart breaking. Actor’s Aesthetic is another enjoyable listen and there are plenty of actors sharing insights into their lives over on the ever-popular, and E’s favourite, Desert Island Discs.

During this week, I was lucky enough to be asked to join host and CEO, Anna Brailsford, on the Code First Girls Podcast sharing my thoughts on Imposter Syndrome. It was fascinating to be able to share my experiences as an actress and educator through this platform that aims to help woman in the competitive world of tech. The episode goes live in a couple of weeks, so why not catch up on the other brilliant guests of the series beforehand? Happy listening, gang. ~L.

What have you been listening to this month? Drop us your recommendations in the comments or reach out on our socials.

Welcome to the family, Chip!

Meet the latest addition to the family, Chip de-la-Haye.

Our pretty boy

Cats have always been a huge part of our family. Growing up, I have fond memories of chasing E’s black and white queen, Babes, round the garden at my Nan’s house. I was totally in love with her soft fur and feline features. The feeling was not mutual: Babes didn’t like humans that much, least of all my gentle giant grandfather, Lloydie. Her favourite game was to hide under the bed in the back bedroom of my Nan’s house, as this where the warm water pipes ran under the floorboards, and my poor Lloydie was always at the receiving end of her claws when trying to coax her out.

My Uncle with another family cat, not Babes, sometime in the mid 1970’s

We eventually got our own family cat: Barbara. She was a long-haired tortoiseshell, rescue cat and we loved her to pieces, even when she’d swipe us between strokes of the grooming brush! I once gave myself a black eye and a cartoon-like, egg-sized bump on the head when she got caught under my feet as I was rushing to a ballet class. In my attempt to not hurt poor Barbara, I tried gracefully to jetté over her. This would’ve saved the day, had I not been in a pair of silk ballet slippers on a tiled floor. I went headfirst into the wall in front of me, but Barbie was completely unscathed, thank goodness.

Yep, she’s absolutely loving that
Potted cat, the summer of 2010

After Barbara, we adopted two moggies, a brother and sister, (supposedly – they certainly fought like siblings) called Tyler and Marmite. Regular readers will be familiar with Tyler. We’re lucky enough to still have our cheeky, noisy tom-cat with us and he’s been invaluable to my family this lockdown, providing E with no end of hilarity, meowing and scratching at her office door the minute she logs on to Zoom.

Tyler, our family moggie

Marmite was devoted to my younger brother, Will. She following him around all day and slept at the foot of his bed each night. Very poignantly, and massively upsettingly, Marmite died on Will’s 18th birthday. We always say she guided Will to adulthood and then departed; she was his Familiar – or daemon, for any Philip Pullman fans – and passed on when her work was done.

Tyler, tending his beloved catmint plants – he boy’s addicted to catmint and catnip

Once Vince and I moved into our new home, with its enclosed garden and surrounding countryside, we just knew the time was right for us to expand the fur family. The lockdown has made the adoption process a little trickier than usual – demand for cats and dogs has rocketed – and the brilliant team at Battersea Cats and Dogs Home, Old Windsor guided us each step of the way.

Meet Chip! Named after the tabby cat Beanie Baby

We filled in an online application in January, once I realised that I wouldn’t be travelling anywhere for work for the foreseeable future. Following that, we had a phone call with Battersea to find out what we could offer our pet and also what we were looking for from life with our adopted pet. And then we waited, perhaps a little longer than in pre-Covid days, but it was so worth it and the bit of patience we had to have paid off. We found out on Mother’s Day that Chip was looking for a new home and Battersea felt he’d be the perfect addition to our family. A couple of days later, which gave us the chance to buying out the whole of the cats section at Pets At Home, Chip arrived!

Since then, we’ve mainly spent the week having lots of strokes and treats as Chip gets used to his new forever-home. We had a whole host of potential cat names. Ronnie, Salem, Binks, Sid, Bloomberg were the front-runners but the moment we met Chip, we decided to keep his given name as it suited him so well.

I’m sure they’ll be plenty more Chip content to follow on our Instagram but for now, we’re looking forward to celebrating his 3rd birthday at the beginning of next month, alongside Vince’s 32nd!

If you’re thinking about adding a fur baby to your family, I can’t recommend Battersea enough. The process is very transparent and the extra support they provide you and your new pet is amazing. And if I may recommend a breed, “rescue moggy” has always been my personal favourite. ~L.

Chip in his new banana bed

Treat Yo’shelf

L shares her latest reading recommendations.

These titles have real shelf appeal

We de-la-Haye Girls have always been avid readers. E is far more adventurous in selecting her material than me, but we often recommend and share books amongst our family. I’m always reticent to try anything new without a recommendation, such is my stubborn Capricorn nature. Prior to this year, I would only allow myself to read “for pleasure” during the holidays. There’s nothing better than selecting your beach reads at the airport and getting stuck in on the aeroplane, is there?

Recently though, with everyone having to go a bit slower and finding ourselves with more time at home, I’ve been treating myself to reading more often. There is a sense of cultivating a habit, or a flow, with the reading, but once formed there is nothing more luxurious than curling up with a blanket and something warm to drink and escaping into those pages.

Travel books are some of my favourite reads at the moment. Planning my next escape already!

With this in mind, I thought I’d share a list of our my most recent recommendations: the books that have had E and me hooked from cover to cover. Please do let us know what you are currently enjoying reading – we’d love to add to our shelves!

  • The Other Bennet Sister Janice Hadlow. Don’t let the intimidatingly large size of this book put you off! Both L and E romped through this “alternative” and extension Pride and Prejudice story within a week. The perfect tonic post Bridgerton.
  • Quite – Claudia Winkleman. This funny, frank and fabulous book had me chuckling out loud. Our beloved Strictly presenter is so unashamedly herself in the writing, it really feels as though your talking to her. Or rather, she is talking to you, sharing her thoughts on all things from art history to the benefits of bangs.
  • I Am Not Your Baby Mother – Candice Brathwaite. Lots of wonderful female authors in this list, what better tribute to this week’s International Women’s Day? We’ve been long time followers of Candice on social media and her debut book is beautiful and brilliant. Enjoyable whether you’re a mother or not – beg, borrow or steal a copy!
  • In Paris – Jeanne Damas and Lauren Bastide. Paris is my happy place. It always has been. I’ve often fantasised about running away and starting a new life across the Channel, renting a tiny apartment in the Sixth…ideally with Vince and a cat. Whilst this is still a pipe dream, I love to read about my favourite city, circling all the cafes and streets I want to explore. Excellent reading if like me, you’re mourning the end of Call My Agent.
  • Yes Please – Amy Poehler. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been recommended this book by friends of mine and during this lockdown, after having picked it up several times, I finally managed to complete it. It’s a lovely, fizzy read which I’m sure I’ll come back to again.
  • Cook, Eat, Repeat – Nigella Lawson. Without fail, each Christmas, both E and I will receive some type of cook book. Cooking and sharing food is a huge part of our family and Nigella’s most recent serving is truly delicious. It reads more like a novel than a cookbook thanks to the way Lawson talks about the emotions surrounding food. It is so comforting during these uncertain times. Oh, and her recipe for Linzer Cookies went down a storm for our German Themed Date Night two weeks ago!
E’s multicoloured bookshelves

What have you been enjoying recently? ~L.