Wednesday, 31 December 2014

2014, you've been alright

Despite the gloomy month, I was determined to hold on to December's bright and optimistic outlook. I focused my energies on sorting through clutter (something I'm doing again one year on), getting plenty of fresh air injecting some colour and beauty into the house to combat the winter gloom.

This month I wrote about maintaining a healthy working/parenting balance, not comparing yourself to others and grumbled about the stormy weather blowing down our garden fence. The money we had put aside for fixing an external wall of the house now had to go to replacing this. Me and mother nature were not on speaking terms that month.

I finally moved back into the sewing room and revelled in the signs of spring that were appearing in the garden. Alessi turned two and I felt so proud of the little girl she was becoming.

This month I got involved in some guerrilla gardening with some seed bombs, unfortunately they didn't take. I also got a whole weekend to myself when Dan took Alessi to Kent. For once I chose to use the time relaxing and pampering myself instead of working. I experimented with kimono jackets which kept me busy and it was this month that I started to feel my sewing mojo properly return. Oh and we got the garden fence fixed. No more chasing the little one out of our neighbour's garden. 

My old nemesis returned to the conservatory. Spider mite, the struggle is real people. I managed to keep it under control using some chemical free concoctions, but it as a chore and I don't feel that I've found a real solution. This will make growing veggies in the conservatory difficult in 2015. Not to mention my poor vines. It was also very busy month for making, not made easier by my sewing machine conking out every so often. I spent as much time fixing the old thing as I did using it.

Not surprisingly, my sewing machine died. The timing was terrible as things continued to be crazy and I was feeling pretty overwhelmed. We spent some time in Wales and I started craving nature and a slower pace like the one I had growing up. That trip was quite a wake up call as I started to feel calm again and dreaded returning home.

After the trip to Wales a little time away from the internet, I reached the conclusion that I'd lost myself in this big old online world and needed to take a step back, or at the very least, find a more healthy balance. Tricky when my business is an online one! I also bought my new sewing machine and called her Mabel. Fell instantly in love and threw myself back into sewing again.

I gave myself a bit of a break in August so didn't write much. I missed it though, but it was good to spend more time out in the garden or sewing with the window thrown open. I had wanted to go camping this month with Dan and Alessi, but it just didn't happen. 

I as still being good with the online/real life balance. We got outside more and it was lovely to see Alessi share my love of wandering around collecting nature's treasures to bring home. I also started some new projects which four months on, I'm still struggling with. I do know how to make life harder for myself! I also had a surprise visit from my friend and we all went camping together. It turns out this was the real reason we didn't get around to it in August. 
Sitting around a campfire toasting marshmallows and watching satellites glide through the night sky will be a memory I treasure forever.

I felt an overwhelming urge to throw myself in to the annual autumn garden tidy up, but as I hadn't done anything with it this year, there was little to do. I felt disappointed by this and so threw myself into everything else autumnal in an attempt to connect with the season. I really missed my garden this year so I might do something with it again in 2015. 

This month it became apparent that I've somehow lost the balance between online and real life. Again. I reviewed what I'd done over the past year and soon realised that I've been doing some things all wrong. So there will be some changes in 2015 which I hope won't have a detrimental effect on the business. For example, I won't be releasing capsule collections for spring/summer and autumn/winter. in 2015. Rather I'll be drip feeding items in to the shop as I make them. Little changes like that will hopefully mean that I can avoid periods where I am so busy that I have no time for anyone or anything else!

Which brings us to now and I've come full circle. Once more I'm at a point where I feel the need to pare down and simplify, but unlike a year ago, the paring down is more specific. I have a better idea of what needs to go and what I need to focus more of my energy on. That's a good start. 

Looking back, this year has been a good one. It's been a busy one, but one full of wonderful moments and I'm grateful for that. It means I didn't zone out completely to the point of missing what was going on around me.  I've made a lot of mistakes this year, but I've learnt a bucket load as a result so I have no regrets there. 
In fact, although it's been a tough year at times, it's been a good one. I love the new year and the feeling of being able to start a fresh, but if I'm honest, I won't be changing an awful lot in 2015. There will be some tune ups here and there, but otherwise I'll be carrying on much as I am now. 

I think this is the first time ever in my life that I have felt this way. 
Is this what contentment feels like?

Friday, 26 December 2014


Christmas this year was a low key affair and had some really lovely moments, including our Christmas walk to test out Alessi's new (to her) scooter. It's blurry, but the look on her face makes this photo priceless and I'm chuffed to bits that Dan managed to capture that moment. I remember looking at her and thinking "I need to remember this". I even managed to squeeze in most of the things from my Christmas Manifesto list too.

Alessi left the mince pie, milk and carrot out for Santa and also added a drawing of a dog that she wanted him to take back to the North Pole with him. He obliged of course.

She got the white pony that she asked for (a little soft toy to cuddle), which she has become pretty attached to. Her name apparently is Pony and woe betide anyone (me), who dares call it a horse.

In the run up to Christmas I managed to spread some Christmas cheer (I hope so anyway) by depositing some little notes around Bath, each wrapped with a little candy cane. We left them on benches, cafe tables, Christmas trees...anywhere we thought they'd stand out and get picked up. It was a manic shopping day though and we stupidly left the buggy at home, so with Alessi in tow, we couldn't really hang about to see if any where taken. Annoyingly, we didn't think to take any photos during 'the drop' either. It was too much of an "over there looks good, *drop* GO! GO! GO!" affair to get any pictures really. Still it was good fun and hopefully brought a smile to some people's faces.

What else, what else? Ah yes, we visited my family, baked Christmas cookies (they were edible too), made Christmas cards, went on walks and sang Christmas songs.

We didn't however, get to watch Alessi in her nativity after all as she was ill *sniff*.
Yes it would more than likely have been organised chaos with the nursery staff more or less shuffling the kids to their spots, and yes, Alessi HATED her King outfit (can't think why). But still, I was a little gutted to have missed it. Hey ho, hopefully there will be another opportunity next year.

Otherwise, it's been a bloody good Christmas time. The best part by far has been watching Alessi take it all in and starting Christmas traditions as a family which I hope we can continue for years to come.

All that said, there have been some sobering moments too. Not wishing to bring anyone down, dotted in amongst all the festivities were some wake up calls that we can take none of this for granted.
The problem is that we all think we have enough time and I keep getting slapped in the face with reminders screaming the opposite to be true.
So it doesn't matter if your Christmas meal was late and everyone was hangry by the time it was served or if your decorations weren't handmade or if your house was and still is a bomb site. We've all got things to be thankful for. All of us.

My dinner was late and was missing parsnips which I love.
I had dinner.

My Christmas decorations weren't handmade and my tree is fake.
I had decorations and a tree.

My house looks like a bombsite so much that I wouldn't recognise it if it was clean, tidy and organised.
I have a house.

I have a family who sometimes drive me crazy.
I have a family. They are safe and healthy and happy.
VERY. Grateful.

I hope everyone reading this also feels that they have something to be thankful for. Remember, imperfect is just fine.


Monday, 15 December 2014

Lessons learned

Morning all. It's Monday which can only mean one thing, I'm sat at the table, coffee close by, going through the week in my head and hoping the day treats me kindly.
To be fair the last couple of weeks have been amazing, except for a brief illness blip. We're all better now though and compared to last year, it didn't last long. Seeing as last year's memories of a plague ridden house are still fresh in my mind, I'm very grateful for that.

Last night I was looking back at the posts I've written this past year. It's something I love doing around this time. I write down the highs of each month, or even the lows, whatever defined it. At first, it always seems very mundane. But by the end I end up with a journey written down in front of me and I even notice patterns repeating themselves which often lead to new lessons learned. Last night I learned two things. Things that have been playing on my mind on and off this year, but seeing in black and white in front of me, really made them impossible to ignore.

The first was about my work. I love being self employed and running The Dress Tree, but reading my posts from this past year has really brought home that some elements of running a business are not compatible with what makes me happy. This has been quite a wake up call and at some point this month I intend to take myself away for a few hours and brain storm how I can move forward with the business in a way that feels authentic to me. I'm excited as it feels quite freeing. Whether it will translate to a healthy business remains to be seen, but fingers crossed!

The other thing I noticed was that I feel a real disconnect when I'm not out in the country. It sounds like a bit of a cliche, but there it is. If you read this blog you'll have seen pictures of my trips to Wales and where I used to live. That leaves it's mark on a person. This one is trickier to remedy and I don't foresee a house move anytime soon. I have a few ideas up my sleeve though which I hope will help avoid the occasional blips in mojo that I seem to be suffering from at least twice a year. 

Anyway, it's time to stop rambling and get moving.
Have a good day everyone. 

Monday, 1 December 2014

A Christmas Manifesto

Oh how I've been looking forward to writing this post!

'Tis the season to be jolly fah la la la la, la la la laaaaaa!' This line pretty much sums up my attitude to Christmas. It's not just about the day, but the build up to it. 
Maybe it's because this time last year we missed out on so much as we were all ill and exhausted, but this year I'm giddy with excitement about the things we can do and the little moments we will share. So much so that I've gone and put together a list so I don't forget to do anything. There's little worse than a wasted opportunity.

Watch Pip in her first nativity
Bring some evergreen into the house
Drink mulled wine
Teach Pip some Christmas songs
Visit my family
Go on some family winter walks
Watch 'Muppet Christmas Carol' with Pip
Bake Christmas cookies
Spread some Christmas joy
Make Christmas cards
Donate some Christmassy bits to the local food bank box as well as the usual bits 
Put together Pip's first Christmas stocking (complete with satsuma)
Leave a mince pie, glass of milk and a carrot out for Santa and his reindeer
Listen to a butt load of Christmas music - For Folk's Sake It's Christmas

Here's to a bloody great December everyone.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Doin' it for the dudes

Right, I'll keep it brief and I promise this is the last time I'm going to mention Movember.

For the next 5 days all proceeds from my moustache necklaces will be donated to the Movember charity, including postage.

I only have two left at £10.00 each which can be found in the shop here.

Of course if you would like to donate to the charity without buying a necklace, you can do so by visiting the Movember website.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Clearing the crap

We have so much stuff!

And I don't even mean decent stuff. Or beautiful stuff. Or even plain useful stuff. Just irritating, space taking, headache inducing stuff. 
Old phone leads, old phones, so much outdated paperwork, batteries (that I'm not even sure work), clothes we haven't worn in years, things that we keep 'just in case'. Things that are taking over the rooms, drawers, cupboards and attic of this house.

I want a home that is only full of things that are loved and needed. Not stuff that was bought just for the sake of buying something. Or because despite not having used it for over 8 years, it just might come in handy one day. I've seen those extreme hoarder programmes. I know how it goes and I don't want to be crushed to death by a giant pile of Molly Makes magazines. Even if they are pretty.

So once again, I can see a charity shop/Freecyle/eBay/recylcing surge coming up. I'm not overly excited about this if I'm being brutally honest. Sure it's a damn sight more responsible and greener than just binning the whole lot, but it does take a lot of time and effort. I know Dan is particularly going to hate it. He's a 'give it to a charity shop or bin it' type of man. I get it. It's easier and why make life harder for yourself? Well, we do have a credit card bill that will benefit from the selling of stuff if I'm being honest here and I'll be buggered if we're dumping perfectly good stuff at the local tip. 

So here we go again. You can expect to see an updated 'Shop My Stuff' page soon and some more posts about our progress. God I hope there will be progress.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The 1989 Ask Anything Tag

Despite the title of this post, I'm not much of a Taylor Swift fan if I'm honest. But I'm always up for a laugh and I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thrown some serious shapes to 'Shake It Off' in the last 24 hours. Don't judge. It was a hoot.

1. Welcome to New York // If you could live in any city, which would it be and why?
Vancouver in a heartbeat. We went there on our honeymoon and instantly fell in love with the place. The folk are so friendly, the place is STUNNING and we just felt very at home there. So at home in fact that we even looked into selling up and emigrating...and then I fell pregnant *ahem*.

2. Blank Space // What is something that everyone thinks is true about you but is actually false? 
That I'm a push over. To be fair, I am to a certain point. And I have been known to let people take liberties in the past to avoid confrontation. But one funny thing that came from having Alessi is that it's made me care less about what people think and more about the possibility of them wasting my time. I am ALL about time these days. I consider it precious and feel very angry when I think anyone has taken up some of mine and been less than respectful with it. 

3. Style // What is one item in your closet that makes you feel unstoppable?
My dressing gown. 

4. Out of the Woods // What is one thing that you're afraid of?
Zombies. Whether it's the World War Z style zombies who make Usain Bolt look lazy or the slowly falling apart zombies of 21 Days Later. It's not right and if The Walking Dead is on our telly you can guarantee I'll be upstairs with my headphones on thank you very much.

5. All You Had To Do Was Stay // Who is someone you wish was still in your life?
I'm very lucky not to have lost anyone close to me and all people living who are no longer in my life are absent for a reason so no negative feelings here.

6. Shake It Off // What is something you have had to shake off?
Something that we all have to deal with in our own ways and that's other people's negativity. Sometimes people are negative towards us intentionally out of spite, other times it's completely unintentional and has nothing to do with us whatsoever. Focus on the people who make you smile and keep moving forward.

7. I Wish You Would // What is something you'd like to happen right now?
I'd like Dan to stop watching football. 

8. Bad Blood // Have you ever had someone stab you in the back?
Not literally. 

9. Wildest Dreams // What would you like to be remembered for?
For being a nice person, for being brave enough to do my own thing and maybe even for being the sort of person that made people smile. When it comes down to it, it really is the simple things like that, that matter.

10. How You Get The Girl // What is your favourite pick-up line?
It's been a very long time since I've done any picking up. Is punching someone on the arm and running away still a thing?

11. This Love // What is something you got back that you never thought you would?
When I was little, my dad bought me this teeny tiny teddy bear thing for my birthday (seriously it's only about 2cm tall). It's had everything happen to it. It got chewed by the dog, lost outside, left at a supermarket, the works. Each time I lost him, I thought it was gone for good and my mum was forever telling me off for the amount of fuss that tiny little sod caused. And now? Now he lives in my knicker drawer. It's a touching tale.

12. I Know Places // Where is one place you always feel safe?
Home. And anywhere with wifi.

13. Clean // What is an important lesson you have learned in life, and how did you learn it?
I almost don't want to write this as it sounds so tooth-achingly trite, but life really is too short to waste doing things you don't want to do with people you don't want to be with.
Wherever possible, save your precious moments for the people you enjoy and for doing the things you enjoy.

Thanks to the lovely Mark for the tag, that was my contribution. I tag anyone else who fancies it.

Monday, 17 November 2014

New In The Shop - Gift Sets

Christmas is coming. The lights have been switched on here in Bath. John Lewis have released their Christmas ad (and overpriced penguin toys *ahem*) and we received our letter from Alessi's nursery about the nativity play. There's no hiding from it folks, it's coming for us all. 

With that in mind, it now seems like an excellent time to tell you about the new gift sets I've listed in the shop. If you're looking for some gift inspiration for someone special (or even yourself) then why not start here?

There are few necklace and earrings sets to choose from and all can be found here in the shop.

The Edie dresses can even be bought as a set with a coordinating bead necklace now too!

In fact I'm really loving these necklaces, so expect to see more in the future. 

I stupidly didn't take any more photos of the teal Edie dress after this so I can't yet list it in the shop. I attempted to take some photos earlier today, but oh my god. The weather in Bath today is so grim that it's proving impossible. I'll have to wait until later in the week and hope the weather decides to play ball. Of course I will keep you all posted.

I hope you're all having a great start to your week!


Friday, 14 November 2014


A couple of weeks ago, I handed Alessi a sheet of heart stickers to keep her entertained for a few minutes. What proceeded was a toddler wandering the entire house, putting heart stickers on everything.
I should probably explain. One of Alessi's favourite things at the moment is a CBeebies programme called 'Bing Bunny'. One of the episodes saw Bing and one of his friends stick hearts on all of their favourite things. I didn't remember this when I handed her the stickers. She did. 

Since then I've removed so many stickers, but there are still loads everywhere. I think it's time to take them all down now, but before I do I wanted to keep a little record of her game. It was wonderful discovering new stickers. In the bed, on 'her' ukulele (it's mine for the record), on her teddies and her favourite books. 

Here are some of the other places that are still wearing the hearts. 

Clockwise from left, her drawer doorknob, her blackboard, her dressing up box with the scary looking bears and her blackboard again.

The stair gate, my sewing table, the wall above our bed and my overlocker.

The stairs (most of the steps got hearted), the clothes dryer, the toilet and the washing machine.

They were literally all over the place. And it made me smile on a daily basis for almost two weeks. 
Thanks kid. You're awesome.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Pumpkin Pie

I'm not sure what got into me this week, but I've been on a bit of a cooking and baking spree. This is unusual for the simple reason that I can't cook. I made cup cakes at the start of the week. The sponge was soggy, the butter cream was drippy and it was so sugary it was headache inducing. 
Nevertheless I persevered and I'm glad I did. Everything I made this week was a massive let down, except these golden beauties.

I made some using tinned puree and the rest from the pumpkin lantern we made for Halloween. I wanted to see if they differed in taste. The simple answer? They didn't. If I hadn't baked them myself I wouldn't have noticed the slightest difference. What I would say is that using tinned pumpkin takes out the faff of cooking the pumpkin flesh and draining it as cooked pumpkin is pretty watery. But then it has the advantage of being cheaper than buying tins of the puree online. So you know, swings and roundabouts.

If you haven't eaten any pumpkin pie yet this autumn. Get on it.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Movember, Halloween and er, Mould. Oh my!

It feels as though I haven't blogged in forever, so I'm surprised to see it's only been two weeks. I really do miss this little space of mine if I stay away too long.
The reason for the brief absence was simply wanting to give a couple projects my full attention. All the necklaces are listed in the shop now which is something I've been planning on doing for aaaages. I've made a dress for a friend and got a butt load of admin tasks done too.
Note to self though, if I have to put a day aside for general admin, stock up on biscuits. And good coffee.

Whilst I'm on the subject of necklaces, now is a good time to announce that for the month of November, all proceeds from the moustache necklaces (necklace price and postage), will go to the Movember Campaign charity. Because you know, I can't grow a 'tache myself. And before any of you (husband dear) make comments about how actually I probably could, shut up.

Necklaces are £10 and can be found here in the shop. Alternatively if you would like to donate to the charity directly, or would just like to find out more, you can do so by visiting

In other news, Halloween has come and gone in a bit of a blur. We didn't take Pip trick or treating as we figured that she's still a bit young for it all. She had great fun running to the door and sharing 'her' sweets with all the other children. There were a few tears when the last ones were given away though. Opps. 

And although the weather is still unseasonably warm for the time of year, it has been very seasonably wet. Which means a damp and in some cases, a mouldy house again. To cut a long story short, downstairs can get pretty damp if we don't keep on top of it and mould tends to form in the living room. One of the external walls needs repointing, a job we were planning on doing over the summer. But then we had those storms last winter which blew down our garden fencing and well, that plan was blown away along with it. We'll try again next year. Providing nothing else falls down/blows away/blows up of course. And with this old house, who can tell.

Still, I'm not complaining. The nights are cosy and I'm feeling more connected to this season than any other that has passed so far this year. I'm looking forward to celebrating Bonfire Night next weekend with some friends and Pip has her 'ear mups' (ear muffs) at the ready in case the fireworks are too loud. And then after that I'm guessing it will be safe to crack out the 'C' word right?

If your answer to that was no then you might want to avoid my blog for a while. Just saying.

Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!

Saturday, 18 October 2014

5 Things I Hate About Autumn

Calm down. I know I harp on and on about how much I love this time of year. I haven't suddenly changed my mind and swung the other way. 
But I do know that if you're not a fan of this time of year (I'm looking at you Loops), all of this "I love autumn!" talk can make your teeth ache. 
So if that's you right now my dears, this one's for you. You're welcome. 

1. Driving in the dark
You can't see much and the lights are blinding. It's boring, tiring and when you add heavy rain to the mix, it's bloody stressful. 

2. Trying to get clothes to dry in the cold and damp
I hung up a load of washing two days ago, they're still damp. So now we're back to hanging things over radiators. 

3. The dim light when taking photos indoors
Bane. Of. My. Life.

4. Colds
Other. Bane. Of. My. Life.

5 . The bleak mid-winter
That period between New Year's and Spring. It's dark, it's grey and it lasts FOREVER. This period's only saving grace is my birthday which I use as an excuse to add colour to the house and to treat myself. 

Monday, 13 October 2014

The Dress Tree Style - Autumn Flower Dress

This weekend we went to Kent for a family party. It was great fun, but I do wish I could kick this bug that's been hanging around for the past few weeks. Coughing every few minutes and leaving a tissue trail in my wake is getting really old.

As I say though, it was a fun weekend and I got to snap this sneaky outfit photo before we left. 
Earlier in the summer I commented on how I needed to show off my dresses more in the form of outfit posts. However, posing for photos is not something that comes naturally and other than this one, I've only taken one other 'outfit post' to date. Bad Kim

That is why it feels like a such an achievement to finally get a photo of another handmade item. It's one of the first Belle dresses I made and I love the print so much. Unfortunately when I made it, I didn't have much of the fabric left so the dress is a little on the er...'petite' size. I'm toying with the idea of taking the elasticated waist out and leaving it as a tunic top instead, but we shall see. 

I hope you all had a lovely weekend.

Friday, 10 October 2014

New in the shop - Pine Cone Necklace

A new addition has been added to the shop!

As you can tell I'm revelling in all things autumnal at the moment and this new necklace is my new love, (I'm going to have to make myself one of these I just know it). The pendant is 4cm long and adds a touch of the new season to any outfit. No seriously it does. I was wearing my pyjamas when I made it. I held it up to see how it looked, BAM! Autumn pyjamas.

Modelled with the bottle green Edie dress.

Necklace £14
Edie Dress £28

Monday, 6 October 2014

Sunflower Harvest

Last week was something of a write off as Dan, Pip and I all came down with colds, coughs and sore throats. I managed to lose my voice at the start of the week and although I'm feeling much better, my voice is still more Tom Waits than Kim Bliss. 
Still, it's that time of year so I can't complain too much. That said, I was suffering a little from cabin fever by the end of the week, so yesterday I ventured outside as soon as the sun broke. I've heard the weather is supposed to turn pretty cold soon so I'm going to make the most of what warm sunny weather we have left.

The peony's seed bulbs had just burst so we spent a happy few minutes collecting all the seeds. 

The sunflowers were definitely ready to come down. The flower heads were drooping and the plants had that crunchy, brown look that they get at the end of the season. We've put them on the conservatory window sill to start drying out.

But seeds aren't the only thing you can do with sunflowers. Did you know that you can dry out and use the stalks too? I find this especially useful with the giant sunflowers. The longest one we have is over 8ft high and I had to use a saw to cut it! 

When they dry out they're as hard as wood and very sturdy. And as they grow straight, they can be used for all sorts of things. I've used them as curtain poles in the past, but they can also be used to stake next seasons plants too.

I'm toying with the idea of growing Pip a sweet pea tipi in the garden next year. If I go ahead with this I now have three decent sized sunflower stalks to make it with which is a good start. 

So all in all, it's not a bad harvest considering I did very little with the garden this year!

P.S.  I've read and re-read this post a thousand times and each time I do, I find a different typo or another sentence that doesn't make sense. Bear with me, I'm sure that I'll make sense again once this lurg has passed one. Please let that be soon!

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

5 Reasons To Buy Handmade

The following reasons to buy handmade are taken from my own experience and so relate to clothing. That said, the principles can be applied to almost anything handmade.

Better quality
I have bought handmade clothes that have lasted years. I have bought clothes from the high street that have lasted months. Of course there are exceptions to this, but in general I've found that handmade items are better quality than their mass produced counterparts.

Clothes wise this means wearing an item of clothing that you know no one else owns and that's pretty special. Even items that are made again and again will be done so on a much smaller scale that you will be one of a very small number of people wearing the same item. 

You know where your clothes are from
Taking my Etsy shop as an example, you immediately know that everything is handmade by me. If you follow this blog you will also know where I make my dresses. Going further still, if you follow my Facebook page you will also know what goes in to making a dress from the photos I've posted. You will usually know the face and story behind a handmade purchase. 

Love, time and effort went into each item
This I can say from first hand experience. There isn't one thing I've made over the years that I'm not proud of. I know the effort that went into designing and making those items. If anything, it's made me appreciate handmade gifts even more, whatever they are. Handmade takes time, it takes dedication and a whole lot of effort. It's nice wearing something you know that someone cared about as they made it. That they worked on getting every stitch right and fretted over anything they felt wasn't perfect. It was cared for before it even reached your hands.

You are supporting small businesses
To small businesses out there, every purchase, no matter how small, is a huge help. When you buy from an independent business, you're helping them not only live out a dream, but you're also helping them support their families as they do it. You may feel that you're just making a purchase, but to the makers out there you are supporting their efforts too. It's a nice thing and it makes us smile. Thank you.

Monday, 29 September 2014

An Impromptu Holiday

Last Tuesday night, I was sat on the sofa eating ice cream and watching Mad Men when Dan got home. Only it wasn't Dan who walked in through the door. It was my dear friend Lona! She stood there with a giant grin on her face and said "I brought pizza!"

Cue lots of tears and swearing.

Lona lives in Amsterdam so we don't get to see each other very often. She and Dan have been planning this surprise trip for the past two months. The wonderful scheming bastards.

The first day Dan was working so Lona and I mooched around Bath. There was shopping, dancing next to the Abbey, pigeon chasing and just generally arsing about. Alessi fell in love with her Aunty Loops all over again. Which is easily done.

Then as if having this special lady visiting wasn't surprise enough, we all went camping!
And to my favourite camping spot too no less. This was our pitch which was all ours for the duration of our stay. It was so peaceful (except for the resident owl) and the weather was perfect

This was the view from our pitch. Not too shabby. There were leaves falling almost constantly from the trees we camped under, like autumnal confetti and in the evenings the sun turned everything golden. For two days, I stopped caring about all those little nags and worries that I usually carry around with me.

My clothes still smell like camp fire smoke. I don't want to wash them.

We went exploring in the woods, played hide and seek and collected pine cones.

We visited the sea, ate chips, bought rock, collected shells and eyed up the lifeguards. Well Lona did you understand. I was too busy eyeing up their quad bike (want one).

Look at that face. This woman is one of the funniest, smartest, strongest and most talented people I've ever met. I want to be her when I grow up.

Here's to you ho bag. Thank you for coming to play!


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