This weekend, I’m mostly in absolute awe of anyone with a toddler or two. My best friend (and old housemate!) came to visit for the weekend, and after a Friday night spent drinking gallons of tea and catching up, we headed over to Layer Marney on Saturday for a spot of babysitting.
Her niece and nephew are both under 4, and I’d only met them briefly at her wedding last summer… the children’s parents were off to an adults-only wedding and I have to confess that despite my multitude of cousins, who I’ve looked after unsupervised for years, I was a bit nervous.
However, they were as good as gold and after popping to the beach with their mum in the morning so they could get to know me, we spent a very rainy day making cards (translation: covering things in glitter glue), playing pirates using beds as ships (surprisingly fun, I may introduce this as an after-dinner game) and watching Shrek. Because dragons and pirates are a really big deal when you’re three and a half 🙂
Feeling: Either overwhelmed or ridiculously excited… I don’t seem to have a middle setting, and it’s rather exhausting!
[Interview] The Paris Letters – a project that turned into a business
[Article] Why mess can be a good thing
[Book] The Secret Supper Club, Dana Bate
[Blog post] Dance to your own beat, the Be Free Community
Eating: with other people – it’s been lovely! (And the year’s first Cadbury mini eggs. Nom nom nom).
Planning: new lines of jewellery, wholesale options and a website; things to do in the new house (decorating, cooking, creating, entertaining) and some dance routines.
Dreaming of: Not being surrounded by boxes, and being a bit bloody warmer, please – the novelty of winter is well and truly over now. If we’re talking actual dreams, I dreamed of sunglasses the night before last so we can only hope that means spring is on its way.
Coveting: Contrariety Rose’s cherry dress (yup, that’s me in the listing. I wanted to take it home!!)
Wishing: I was better at playing the ukulele and/or guitar, especially after discovering 9 year old Zoe Thomson’s guitar playing.
Working on: New fonts on the site (did you notice how much prettier they are now?) courtesy of Gemma at Jane & Philbert, and deliberately disconnecting more often, courtesy of Diane Leigh and Grace Marshall.
Celebrating: Having been 27 for a whole week today, and the launch of 15 Queen Street tonight.
Grateful for: The first shafts of sunshine, likeminded souls and my apparently innate ability to network and connect with people.
And finally tomorrow I will be: drinking hot chocolate with Rachael, finalising the packing up of the studio, making lists of the contents of the flat and working on all my websites.
On my to-do list?
– Various money-related tasks (paying bills, setting up accounts, budgeting & planning)
– House admin (let people know I’m moving, switch providers, notify of change of address, etc etc etc)
– Try and get some kind of control over my Ducking Fabulous accounts
– everything is there, but nothing is in date order and it’s making me cross
– Book next burlesque course
– Learn a bit more about Google Analytics
– Getting dates in the diary with friends who I’ve been trying and failing to see for months
So quite a good one ahead – and of course ploughing on with the web stuff at the day job. Which I love, but which occasionally makes my pea brain hurt.
Christmas is all over for another year, and though I’m very much enjoying the week in limbo between years in a way I thought would be impossible a few short months ago, the season rather snuck up on me this year. Sitting working quietly on Rob’s sofa before we head out to a party later, I thought now would be a good time to look back at 2012 and perhaps forward at 2013. Though that may make the post too epic, so perhaps I’ll do that separately. I’ve kept it wordy as I hope to sort a photo album out later on…
I saw the 2011-2012 new year in with Rob and his friends, at Holly’s house, watching fireworks and making Emily dress up as a dinosaur, accompanied by large amounts of cocktails. The rest of January shot past in something of a blur, with the highlight being Progress Theatre’s production of Neverwhere, one of my all time favourite books, which the fabulous Lou had done the costumes for.
Much of February 2012 was taken up with our much-anticipated USA road trip. Though I never finished blogging it, this was truly epic, so much so that we still haven’t chosen the photos to go on the wall – there are too many awesome memories! I turned 26 as we flew home, which was actually quite nice.
In March I met the gorgeous Anastasia’s equally gorgeous daughter Zoe. Unrelatedly, I discovered I would have to embark upon the first and only diet of my lifetime, in order to fit into the bridesmaid dress Julia had bought for me when she and Ed first got engaged. (I love her, and it was that or not be a bridesmaid, which was unthinkable. I do not love anyone else in this world enough to diet for them, believe me – never, ever again!!). To make this more bearable, I also booked a boudoir shoot for June, went to a corset party and signed up for burlesque classes. I had no idea how this would change my life…
April brought the relaunch of the Ducking Fabulous shop, dressing up as a dead parrot for a Monty Python party and my very first burlesque class. I loved it from the start – it was like recognising something that had been there all along.
May was a completely mad but absolutely wonderful month. I started it with a long weekend back in Loughborough with my uni girls I lived with, which was weird but fab; hit Paris and Disney dressed as Belle from Beauty and the Beast for Julia’s hen do; booked CybHer to give me some blogging oomph and incentive, saw Swan Lake on Ice with Hannah and revisited the Royal Albert Hall as a spectator, for the first time since I performed there in 2005 (which was lovely but very odd…). And my favourite part, a week on a narrowboat with Rob, Andy, Gemma, James and Jo – which we just happened to have booked during the hottest week of the whole year.
News of Cat and Mark’s engagement heralded June, while drinking cocktails at the Oxo tower. Which was rather lovely. I spent a day at Elstree studios learning WordPress with Andy, and we overheard and then sneakily watched Leona Lewis rehearse. Lou and I went to a Startup Saturday course, and I took the beginnings of the London Pin Up School to start to form them into an actual strategy. It went down a storm, and both of us came away feeling really inspired. I sold my first international order on Etsy, built an online portfolio (which still needs work, but the basics are there), discovered a new friend and rollerskating companion in Caroline, and took myself on a date to the Hammersmith Apollo to see Against Time – Flawless vs the English National Ballet. Some things are too good to be shared! The lovely Bluebell the bicycle also came to live with me towards the end of the month… a good omen, given that I can now cycle to work! I also slipped in the boudoir shoot, with Emily, which was terrifying but fabulous and incredibly good for both soul and self image. And I also met the lovely Craftyguider in real life, which was nervewracking but fab – we had a great time and her children are gorgeous!
July was characterised by inspiring conversations about opening a gym and generally working for oneself and escaping the City grind, puppies, celebratory dinners, long bike rides and another amazing CAE, this time in Yorkshire. Even the rain couldn’t stop us having fun, and I treasure these weekends, they’re truly three days of laughter, bant and frankly ridiculous conversations, surrounded by people I never expected to meet and now cannot imagine my life without, even the ones I only see once or twice a year. I picked up the images from my photoshoot and experienced a profound shift in perception – for the better. I cannot recommend this experience enough, and promptly booked another one for October – seeing myself in a new light is one of the most valuable things I’ve done this year.
July was of course also Julia and Ed’s wedding, and it was gorgeous – the bride was amazingly beautiful, the groom couldn’t stop smiling and the rest of us managed to hold it together until Julia’s old musical drama group did a Love Actually-style flashmob in the reception, where they’d rewritten a Disney medley for her and Ed. I bawled, but it was lovely. She’s now a Wilson and happily settled in Bristol, and I am dying to see her! (and yes, I fitted the dress, I lost almost two stone between March and July. Proud, but never again!!)
August saw me suddenly putting myself in gear and organising things – a picnic for lots of dear friends I hadn’t seen for ages, a conversation with Annastasia led to our now launched company Ink Drops Boxes, I discovered Free Range Humans and began to look at the world differently and start to work out what I actually wanted to do with my life. I was able to work from home during some of the Olympics, and I was amazingly moved by the Olympians and how well we hosted it – definitely a summer to remember. Horses and puppies and GCSE results arrived with my extended family, Janine had an amazing tea party/BBQ for her birthday (and my gazebo is still there, oops!!) and Wendy and I went up to London to see the Hurly Burly show – the first live burlesque I’d seen apart from the Fling last year. It was even better than expected!
Trade shows and Ink Drops dominated September, including nearly running out of petrol halfway home from Birmingham and discovering that “vegan” and “just irritatingly fussy” make for a very relaxed approach to eating out together! I started applying for more craft fairs without really believing I’d have time to do them, but knowing I had to start somewhere to build up my attendance again. I did a double take when I realised a whole year had passed since the Romania rally, and had a whole host of lunches out with amazing people to try and get over the shock!
September also brought news of a new job, handing in my notice to the City at last, and my first Escape the City workshop, plus a new friend. Ironic, as I’d already left… but we’ve now formed an entrepreneurial support group which is fabulous. I managed to squeeze in two burlesque shows – one at Proud Cabaret, with work ladies, and one in Chelmsford with my best friends, both of which made me squee and want to work on my own routines even more. Having handed in my notice, I was quite overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, and intrigued by comments that I was brave.
October. Cabaret, cabaret, cabaret – my first burlesque performance! Rehearsals with the girls, rehearsals at class, class as normal. Costumes, feathers, glitter, panic, then elation as I stepped off the stage. The performing bug is back! Another boudoir shoot, this time with much more idea of what I wanted, followed, and Lou and I had a hilarious evening trying on all our outfits and accessories for it. I spent a lot of the month working on a helicopter presentation (who knew that a LAMA was a helicopter and not a furry animal with wings?!), had a Bare Escentuals make-under and found a glorious new liquid lipstick (in red, of course), had our first Escape the City meetup, and then left work in a blaze of tears, a vintage mannequin and a THREE KILOGRAM Kit Kat (photos of that to follow when I find my camera card). Straight in the car up to Nottingham where I spent quite a lot of time in stunned “has it really happened” kind of mode, and we spent the other half bankrupting ourselves in Lakeland and making chicken and tarragon pie and chocolate spoons. Not to be eaten at the same time, obviously. I subscribed to Simple Things in honour of my new, slower lifestyle.
1st November was our official launch date for Ink Drops, and the 5th saw me start my new job at the university. After a whirlwind month of being accepted to fairs, my first Ducking Fabulous stockists, a night of cocktails at Karen & Dave’s, the Free Range festival, a tassel making workshop (including making new friends and learning to twirl them!) with the fabulous Alex/Fanny Darling, a VIP trip to the Hollywood Costume exhibition to see the Ruby Slippers with Caroline, and frequent long “what the hell just happened” conversations with Lou (as Contrariety Rose and Ducking Fabulous found fairs and stockists at almost exactly the same time), I hit the end of the month with a big party for my aunt’s 40th and some much needed puppy cuddles the following day, before my first fair at Curves gym on the last Wednesday of the month.
December saw the beginning of fair season proper… it has been insane but so much fun! Leigh involved Val and Ellie, plus Anna and Dan had their stall behind us. Again made lots of friends, learned lots from both stallholders and customers, and managed to sneak in staying the night before with Val and dinner & putting the world to rights with Ellie on the day. New collaborations are looming, I’ve started burlesque again after the break and there are exciting plans going on there for a troupe and some performance, I’ve discovered edible glitter, I’m heading to another burlesque performance on Saturday night after my final fair, there’s a graduates’ Free Range group which is providing the most amazing platform for likeminded people to chat, give advice and generally work through this incredible new life together… and in the last week before Christmas, I packed in a shopping day with Mum, Olympia horse show with Ellie, and lunch and coffee with dear friends.
Christmas itself was gorgeous but quiet, and Christmas Eve and Boxing Day were spent with the extended family, the giant kit kat and a sense of relaxation. I’m now up in Nottingham with Rob till New Year and trying to decide what make up Little Red Riding Hood would wear, for a party this evening. Cocktails feature heavily in the next few days 🙂
From my breakdown in February to my overarching, incredible happiness, sense of self and enjoyment of every day now – it’s been a transformational year. I don’t think I could start to put into words what I’ve learned, discovered and found – but I do hope 2013 is as incredible. I’m looking forward to seeing what it brings, though less resemblance to a rollercoaster would be great…
I’m still rushing around in a tearing hurry (but oh, such a good feeling to be hurrying for myself!) so here are some snippets of things that have made me happy over the last week or two…
Ink Drops orders – I cannot wait to see reactions from the first batch of boxes, which ship on 14 December;
Treats – I went to Waitrose and accidentally came home with two tubs of Haagen Dazs ice cream (they were on special, it would have been rude not to) and the utterly gorgeous Montezuma’s mint chocolate… it’s expensive, but worth it 🙂
Being given the go-ahead to join student dance classes from January, as both a dancer and a photographer. I’ll be dancing in ballet and hopefully working up to pointe class, which will inform a couple of burlesque routines I am plotting and choreographing. The photography is a project I’ve wanted to start for ages, but have never had access to dancers en masse before now… so I’m very excited!
The arrival of my new dishwasher… it’s been here a little less than 48 hours and has already changed my life… I have no idea how I survived without one for so long!
Adding to my homeware and finally having a theme – turquoise and purple seems to be across my kitchen and living room/dining area, while blue and vivid pink dominate my bedroom, and black and white in the bathroom. I can live with that – they all reflect different bits of me. Here is a teal tablecloth, which will definitely get embellished and altered, and some cheap but pretty purple tea towels. Currently being ignored in favour of my Christmas ones!
I’ve done more fairs, and enjoyed every moment of them – in the time i took out, I’d forgotten how much I enjoy meeting people. Also had a wonderful coincidence at the Leigh fair, bumping into three lovely ladies (a mum and her two daughters) who Lou and I had met in Spitalfields in the summer, while trying on clothes in Collectif. They popped up at the fair and it was a fabulous moment! Here’s me with my stall (and my hastily-altered dress… it’s strapless, and it was FREEZING, quite literally, on Saturday… so a lace top was added!)
Lovely, lovely evenings with my parents – particularly in this run up to Christmas, they and I have been decorating new places and new trees and sharing decorations and it’s AMAZING. I love that they live so close, and my Christmas spirit is very much present and correct this year!
Putting the world to rights with friends – in person, on the phone and over Skype, it’s all rather soul-nourishing. Inspiration is all over the place and I think 2013 may be the best year yet!
On a more profound note, two people have, without any prompting at all, told me I’m brave this week, and a dear friend said I appreciated and savoured life more than anyone else she knew, and that I “do the things everyone else just talks about”. If you’ve been reading this blog for longer than a month, you’ll know that’s in no way always been the case, and that comment has stayed with me all week – alternately making me want to shriek in triumph, and cry with happiness. Glorious.
I’ve also noticed, and I don’t think this is particularly worthy of its own post, that lots of bloggers I follow have been wondering whether to continue, fretting about their readers or lack thereof, and worrying about what they post if it’s less than their best writing (because this is apparently what ‘real’ or ‘big’ bloggers recommend). Here seems as good a place as any for me to gently but unwaveringly reaffirm that Ducking Fabulous is my little home on the web. I am beyond delighted to have you, lovely readers, along for the ride, but as you have probably gathered, there is no particular focus, and there is more waffle than well-thought-out, profound writing. I make no apologies for this, as I believe blogging should be something you do because you enjoy it, and you do for you… if you stop writing what you truly want to write, your blog loses its soul. Readers usually follow because they liked what you were already writing, or at least that’s why I follow the blogs that I do.
I’m not offended when people unfollow me, whether it’s here, on Twitter or anywhere else – I assume it’s because whoever it is is no longer interested in what I’m saying. And that’s fine. Conversely, I am RIDICULOUSLY EXCITED whenever WordPress, Twitter or Pinterest tells me I have a new follower, because the chances are their blog, feed or boards will be something I also want to read or follow. And that, for me, is by far the beauty and biggest strength of the social web – finding likeminded people you’d never have known before the internet existed.
All photographs are my own – the one of me was taken by the fabulous Val, who was a brilliant Ducking Fabulous ambassador on Saturday! Don’t forget to have a quick nose at the shop, or pop into Tea & Sympathy (Colchester) or Make Do & Mend (Chelmsford), both of whom are currently stocking DF jewellery. I’ll be at the Vintage and Makers Market on Saturday 8th December in Chelmsford
town city centre, and last order dates for Christmas are 8 December for the EU and 16 December for the UK – my official rest-of-world last order date has passed, though I will still do my best to get things to you in time for Christmas 🙂
This time last year, like today, I was heading over to Chelmsford after work to join old colleagues for their annual Christmas dinner.
This time last year, I had somewhat lost the Christmas spirit. I stepped off a train, late, hot and flustered from the sardine-can interior, and spent the entire evening fielding calls from taxi drivers for the event I’d organised for some directors and their clients.
This time last year, I went home to a flat that closely resembled a storage facility with a bed in it, and didn’t get my Christmas decorations up until halfway through December because I was just too tired.
This time this year, I am already feeling festive. I will change and do my hair and make up, put Poppy’s roof down if the weather stays dry and drive over to Chelmsford from my new life. I’ll enjoy every drink, every moment and every snippet of conversation with my phone firmly switched off.
This time this year, I will go home, sort out my stock and box some up for Tea & Sympathy, and then tomorrow after work deliver it and collect my takings from the last batch.
This time this year, I have a full size Christmas tree, which I’ll spend tomorrow evening decorating, and a home I love and can entertain friends in.
Perfection. And I still can’t work out how I made it happen so quickly!
With stock in the ever-fabulous Tea & Sympathy in Colchester, soon to be in the gorgeous Make, Do and Mend in Chelmsford, supplying goodies for a friend’s daughter’s pop up college shop and four fairs starting Wednesday evening, it has been a little manic here at Ducking Fabulous HQ for the last couple of weeks.
Some of my printed domino necklaces in progress – I’m very excited about this batch!
I’ve also been working hard on Ink Drops Boxes with Annastasia from Midorigreen, which has been lovely, and punctuated by hilarious Skype chats involving unintentional Lucozade highs. If you love all things handwritten, pop over and see the site and our blog, and if you’re struggling for presents, why not have a look at the shop – a surprise box of beautiful stationery might be the answer!
Christmas preparations are also starting – this weekend I will be at the Betty Blue Eyes vintage and handmade fair in Leigh-on-Sea (and visiting two lovely friends who live in the area at the same time) on Saturday, and at Mum & Dad’s sorting out Christmas trees and decorations on Sunday… they have bought a new tree for their new, higher-ceilinged abode, and I get the old one, which will fit beautifully into my flat… somewhere. I’m excited for sorting through decorations, most of ours have stories – will try and post about some of them nearer the time.
Right now I am mostly revelling in the incredible feeling of being surrounded by likeminded people and full of inspiration… it’s a feeling like no other!
Other things that have made me happy this week…
A rainbow on my way to work | Househunting | Tentative plans to borrow a greyhound | Dinner and Christmas decoration making at Mimi’s | A fabulous night with family for my aunt’s 40th birthday | puppy cuddles | the Free Range Festival | a festive Saturday in London with some of my uni girls | chocolate muffins | stories of my parents’ lives and travels before I arrived | starting on the overhaul of this site | getting my boudoir shoot photographs back | tassel making workshop and learning to twirl – the best Thursday evening I’ve had for ages! | Contrariety Rose’s mini-boutique in Creative Crafts in Reading | roof-down driving on a Tuesday evening | impromptu dinner and giggles with my parents | fairy lights | stocking up on Lush’s amazing seasonal soap | treating myself to a couple of books I’ve wanted for a while | MAC’s lip primer
So an all round fabulous couple of weeks! I am trying very hard to resume regular, twice a week posting – watch this space 🙂
It’s been, amazingly, a whole month since my first ever burlesque performance. Cabaret night had been excitedly planned, panicked over and squeaked about for quite some time, and then crept up on us quite suddenly!
Any of you who know me in real life or follow me on Twitter will be aware that although I’ve loved burlesque, corsets and the pin up style most of my adult life, and have danced most of my life, joining a burlesque dance course was quite a big step. A step that, once taken, I couldn’t understand why it had taken me so long – I think was born to prance about in a corset and high heels with feathers in my hair!!
I dance with some of my closest friends, and lots of lovely friends turned up to watch us dance, among them Lou and her sister, who also ran a Contrariety Rose stall on the night… and some of my uni girls who schlepped all the way up from Oxford, Kent and Southend… bless them! Was lovely to see them though I was far too overexcited to actually have a proper conversation!
Here are some more pics of us dancers…
And we made it into the Essex Chronicle the following week!
It was a glorious night (I also had a Ducking Fabulous stall) and I came off the stage wanting to go and do it again, preferably immediately! Definitely have the performing bug back again after so long away from the stage – and can’t wait to start classes again in January!
My final day in London was 26th October. I was rather tearful and overwhelmed, having been entirely unexpectedly presented with a lovely card, a vintage mannequin (they know me well) and THE BIGGEST KIT KAT IN THE WORLD (you think I’m joking… look at it!! Was very touched that my director had bid on it in a charity auction for me.)
You can see the mannequin, now named Delilah, in the background of an Ink Drops promo pic here…
and the KitKat here, all three kilos of it, and better photos coming soon. My plan is to photograph it properly and then take it home for Christmas so the kids can help me eat it. With a hammer. It would be a shame not to eat it!
Caroline helped me carry all my stuff to St Paul’s station, and then I hopped on a tube, hopped on a train for the final time and headed home to shower, collect Poppy and drive up to Nottingham. Rob had promised to have celebratory cocktails at the ready, though the fact that I didn’t get there till twenty to one in the morning scuppered my plans to drink lots, lol!
On Saturday we popped to town and accidentally helped break a Guiness World Record (for the most people doing a science experiment at the same time – slime and rockets, what’s not to love?!), experimented with Shakeaway and tried not to buy the whole of Lakeland, and then went home to celebrate some more by cooking ridiculous amounts of food…
Recipes and the beginnings of chicken & tarragon pie…
We might have cheated a tiny bit with the pastry but doing a good job of pretending to be proud, no?!
Finished pie!! It was AMAZING.
(yes, extra big pic, I was proud of the pie)
And I wanted to test my new spoons mould from Lakeland… with chocolate orange…
Never miss an opportunity to pose like an idiot, me…
And just in case you’re interested, this is what four chocolate spoons look like when I’ve accidentally eaten the one I was posing with. (I’m actually quite excited about the concept of doing these in marbled chocolate to go with dessert for dinner parties…) The chocolate orange stays softer once it’s been melted and mixed, so they were very
dangerously moreish pleasant when set.
It was gloriously relaxing and a lovely way to mark the end of my London adventures and start my new life… and I finished it by meeting Anna in Loughborough for dinner, and Dad unexpectedly joined us for a drink too, to break his journey.
All round lovely 😀
So as some of you will know, I finally quit my City job last week and will be starting (work!) at the University of Essex in November. This was a fairly emotional decision as while I have been immensly frustrated, tired and cross for much of my time here, I work with a great bunch of people and it will be sad to leave.
I am incredibly excited about the new position, and the joy of knowing I will no longer be commuting on the train, and instead riding my bike for 40 minutes each way, is fabulous… but after a frankly eye-opening conversation with HR about just how much will be deducted from my final month’s pay, it would appear I’m going to have to be very thrifty for a month or two until I’m settled into the new job and money has resumed making its way into my bank account!
I will of course still be doing the things I love, but will be keeping an eye on those pennies until after Christmas. I will (sadly) be taking a break from my burlesque class until January, but I will continue to practise the routines I’ve learned, and until my train ticket runs out, will pop over and see the girls before class every Wednesday anyway.
They are some of my favourite people in the ENTIRE WORLD and I have no clue what I did before I met them! (not all of them in pic below, but I’ll have some after Saturday! That’s me in the polka dots and cherry buckled corset.)
My blogging should step up a notch, and I might even get time to do the long-awaited overhaul of DF. Between now and starting the new job, there’s the official launch of Inkdrops, my first ever burlesque performance, a huge powerpoint project and some serious work to be done with Escape the City and Free Range Humans. Excellent.
Here’s to a new life – and managing to stay in touch with the fabulous people I am leaving behind in the City!
All photos link back to their original page if not my own.
I’ve had such a mad few weeks, I haven’t done a Happy Thursdays post for AGES. However I have been keeping my eyes open for small things that make me smile during the long and sometimes relentless weeks. Here are a few:
Perfect cupcakes before the Hurly Burly show, with Wendy. Gorgeous Sunday – cake, burlesque and one of my best friends, what more could a girl want?!
A truly spectacular moment on the way to the pub after rollerskating with Caroline, and planning our cabaret performances, her website, her new house and my future. It was glorious, and felt like a proper summer evening.
Lunch at the Folly with Lou. Full review coming soon (possibly on Project Pin Up) but I loved that they gave us our bill in a seed packet. It was fabulously quirky, suited us down to the ground AND there was a fashion shoot going on at the same time we were there.
Spotting an old but rather beautiful Maserati outside my parents’ new house. Sadly not theirs.
Deckchairs and screens provided in the middle of the City for workers to watch the Olympics and Paralympics on. Lovely, no?
There are more, but I’ll leave you with those for now. I am off to get some sleep, finish recovering from this horrible virus I’ve had, and hope with all my heart that Poppy sails through her service and MOT tomorrow – it makes me unreasonably nervous!
Goodness, how the weeks are racing past!
I am about to put on a headscarf, put Poppy’s roof down and race off to Helen’s Mad Hatter’s Tea Party… very excited! This morning I had breakfast out with Simple Things magazine (I love it – it could have been written for the life I am now actively working towards), then came home, spring cleaned the living room so I can actually see the floor (it has been doubling as a photo studio for some time now) and went through the catalogues and brochures we brought home from last weekend’s trade fair, for the secret project… which will be revealed very, very soon! We have some final touches and tweaks to make to the website tonight and tomorrow, and our survey and tweets will begin from Sunday/Monday 🙂
So do keep your eyes peeled – I know lots of you will love it!
Life has been very busy but rather lovely recently, not counting a day of illness. Last night I was out at Proud Cabaret with girls from work – most of them had never seen burlesque before and I’m still not sure they’re convinced, but I had a wonderful time and stole some costume ideas too 🙂
I have a whole stack of blog posts drafted, waiting to retrieve photos from various bits of technology to go with them… perhaps that should be tomorrow’s job. With a cup of tea, in the sunshine… yes, that sounds like a way to spend a morning!
Until later, lovelies – I would linger, but there is cake to be eaten and tea to be sipped!
Title borrowed from something Mimi said to me earlier today. It summed up perfectly how I feel right now – tense, bubbly, ready to explode with all the exciting things that are happening but also slightly reluctant, nervous, apprehensive. And yet much more so, positive, forward looking, decisive and determined. It’s wonderful but slightly unnerving, feeling all these things at once.
I’m on my way to a meeting to talk about one of the many exciting ventures that are currently building and falling into place in my life. I do feel, despite some ups and some serious downs, that I am shortly to be exactly where I am meant to be, where I have been leading to both deliberately and unconsciously, for all of my adult life.
The Olympics are over and the Paralympics don’t start for another two weeks – London is in limbo, but we truly have inspired more than a generation.
For me, watching the games, experiencing the atmosphere and observing the grace, belonging and dedication of those athletes, doing something they truly love – it made me realise that I need to stop waiting for my dreams to magically happen, and go and get then instead. This means creating something rather than looking for a compromised version, making it happen instead of hoping it will fall into my lap if I wait long enough. In short, stop watching, start doing – my dreams will only happen if I make them.
I also tried to take up running, something which I’m almost certain will be quite short lived. I prefer wheels to feet. But can’t hurt to try something new, right?
So I am considering, planning, weighing up options. The response I’ve had from the few, varied, people I have whispered my tentative plans to has been overwhelmingly positive – I wasn’t looking for validation but support, and I have cried more than once at how lucky I am to have these kinds of friends and family. Unwavering, loyal, but also honest – and help me see things I may have overlooked about myself.
I have a definite timescale, defined by things outside my control. But that’s no bad thing. It adds to my focus, makes me even more determined.
This is a hazy vision of my future, I know, but watch this space – my custom-made life is about to develop like a photograph in a darkroom…