Apologies that I’ve been so absent lately – I’m afraid April turned into one of those manic months where things all came together at once and unfortunately something had to give, and that something was my beloved blog(s). I’ve missed writing loads, but unfortunately priorities wise they do come below childcare and earning some money, although I’m hopeful that one day maybe this and the latter can collaborate a bit more! Not writing doesn’t mean that I wasn’t thinking about writing and planning, and infact I had a whole month’s worth of posts planned for April here and on Handmade by Holchester (www.holchester.com), it’s just these will still be coming your way across May and June instead.
The biggest impact on April was that I didn’t have any childcare which meant I was looking after Tigger full time and my word she’s a full-on toddler these days! I’m very lucky to have my own room for all my sewing and writing (and other general playing with stuff), but it’s a Tigger-free zone as its just not safe to have her around the machines, pins etc. And while I did manage to get things done during her afternoon naps I was busy with the second big thing of last month – 4 commissions! It was wonderful to be so busy, but with all 4 being different there was quite a bit of designing, sketching and then making to be done. And it’s especially tricky when you can only do it in 90 minute chunks in the afternoons and evenings once she’s in bed and other mundane things, like toy-tidying and dinner, are out of they way.
I’m so happy with the way all 4 cushions turned out and certainly the recipients (so far) seemed happy which is always lovely. What was so nice about these ones was the variety, one was a new-house purchase, one for a toddler’s nursery, one a local landmark and the final one a personalised gift for a big birthday (not shown as it’s not been given yet!). They were all lovely to do and I really enjoyed the design process for each of them and although they all came through at the same time it was a good way to test my skills, my speed and the adaptability of how I work.
April ended on a high as well as the three of us headed to Sussex for the bank holiday weekend and for Jon and I to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary. Unsurprisingly alot has happened in the 5 years since we got married. As well as some big ‘landmark’ moments like moving to Oxfordshire from Lancaster, buying a house and having a baby, there have been some other tricky times like being made redundant twice within 6 months, dealing with having family so far away and just generally adapting to life in a totally new place which I did find especially difficult. We celebrated getting through all that by going for a lovely meal, just Jon and I (for the first time in 18 months!), while my parents made sure T only got into the good types of mischief.
We visited a gorgeous little country pub called the Rising Sun in Nutbourne, West Sussex and the food was simply fantastic. I’d absolutely recommend it to anyone who’s in the area and to tempt you here are some pics – I started with Tempura Monkfish with a lemon Mayo and then had Pork Belly with mash, some veg and an amazing shard of crackling. Pudding was Sticky Toffee pudding and I’m sorry but it looked so good I totally forgot to take a pic, oops!
The start of May has also been busy and as well as doing my first Parkrun, which I loved, I also co-hosted a takeover of the monthly Make and Meet held here in Bicester by The Peachy Pair that I’m a regular at. My co-host was Emma from Em Makes and Bakes and we decided to do a banner making workshop. You can read Emma’s blog post all about it here and I couldn’t agree with her more. It was a really successful evening and whilst doing it was a big thing for both of us for our own reasons we aced it. We also learnt that, as suspected, we do think along very similar lines when it comes to crafting!
I was co-hosting it with my Handmade by Holchester hat on so I’ll be doing a proper post about it over there but I’ll post a link back here once it’s live. But while I’m on the topic I’d really recommend reading Em’s blog generally, she has great taste in crafty things and in baking, but also her instagram account is often full of very pretty things. And as well as being a crafty partner-in-crime we’re also both heading to Blogtacular next month so I would expect both of us will be going blogging-crazy with loads of inspiration too so get in early before the real fun starts!
If you’ve got to the end of this then congrats!! Hopefully you now get why I’ve been a bit AWOL, but not quite, and you’ve forgiven me. I’m all planned out for the next few weeks and beyond and I’m really looking forward to sharing these bits with you so if you haven’t completely forgiven me then at least give me another change?!
Now I’m off to enjoy a bit of sunshine in the garden before T wakes up and Autumn arrives early! See you soon!