We bought a house!

OH MY! So I am aware after continually saying to myself and you guys that I would be better, make more, write more, share more, post more, update more…I stopped. 2016 ended with a bit of a bump and left me feeling less like myself and more like a retreating hermit crab. I could almost go as far as saying I hated my job, it had quite literally drained the last of my energy by the time December 20th rolled round. I was also now renting a flat from a friend after being saved from living under the landlady from, well, something like hell.

The decisions

Life wasn’t bad, good health (ish), friends that cared beyond belief (living cheap in Brighton was quite literally my bank accounts saviour!) I had a job, and I did have a roof over my head. But I certainly wasn’t happy with the status quo and over the two glorious weeks off from work, retreating at my parents house in Somerset with Ben we made two decisions:

  1. I would not end 2017 at my job
  2. We would not end 2017 renting two separate places

These were two decisions that had no plan behind them, in fact we had absolutely no idea as to how we were going to make these things happen, we just knew that they had to happen. Ben was living in a house that was to be sold and I couldn’t live off of my friends generosity forever. Having made these decisions we forgot the worries and enjoyed the festive period.

Time for a plan

Fast forward to day two back at work in January, the sky was grey, I was cold as I always am and the stomach churning feeling was back. The sleep that I had rediscovered over Christmas had gone and the pounding, face numbing, headaches were in full swing.

What were we going to do. I decided to take the plunge and call a lady recommended by a friend. At that point I had no idea how much she would change our lives over the next few months. L, a mortgage advisor, was someone I had dreaded contacting. She was the person that would either light the fuel on the next part of our lives or diminish the small flame of hope that we had found. Turns out she did the former. After many hours of figure checking, paperwork, emails and calls we discovered that decision 2 was not completely out of reach. This coupled with previously unknown support from family meant that buying our own place was actually possible. It might be tight and budgets would be stretched but we could do it!

We started hunting. We saw some interesting places, rechecked our figures and discovered we could buy the perfect house. Needed some work but it could be ours to turn into a home!

Whilst this plan was taking shape I continued to turn up for work and if I thought 2016 ended badly, I could not have comprehended the emotional onslaught of February 2017. But something happened, I received a message from a friend. Not wanting to push the point or debate, she highlighted a potential position that was available at the company she worked for. However, she knew I was already stressed with the house buying and work that, she wasn’t sure I would want to add any extra complications. She was wrong! This was the perfect day to make me brave. I’d been driving home feeling lost, seeing no way out of my situation. On any other day I might have left the message in my inbox thinking it would be “too much” to take on. Instead I replied with, “Yes! Who do I call?”

Fast forward to May

Ben and I got the keys to our new house on 2nd May. I handed in my notice on 4th May, I was put on garden leave on 8th May. For the five weeks following this I got up every day, drove to our new house and sanded, painted, laid floors, ripped up carpets and found a sense of achievement and calm that I hadn’t felt in a long time. On 5th June I started my new job and on 14th June we moved in!

The house is still very much a work in progress, although we have achieved a lot in a very short space of time. We sit every evening discussing the bits that we would like to change or paint or fix and the lists are many and endless. However it is ours and it is home. My next big project for me is to sort a room downstairs for all my craft and beauty things so that I can get back to making things I love. I have enjoyed attacking the house but I do miss my homemade creations. It also means I will have more to share and to talk about. I have been chronicling the house renovation however there are only so many white walls that you can share!

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Finding balance: work & life &…

So I am finding this increasingly hard! I wake up with the best intentions to be productive and get things done with regards to the blog and my etsy shop. I drive to work thinking about all the amazing things that I could do and try and the bits and bobs that I would like to get done today. I then arrive at work and throw myself into being productive for other people.

diary

By the time lunchtime hits most of the ideas for the blog and my creations have disappeared from my head, although I make a note of each and everyone in my notebook that I keep to hand because my memory is not that great even at the best of times!

17:45 arrives and all enthusiasm for being productive and getting stuff done has gone. To be honest I don’t even think about the things I wanted to do, it’s not even really like I am procrastinating, it’s as if all my ideas have been wiped from my mind. By the time I arrive home all I want to do is eat dinner, shower and wait for sleep. Continue reading

Print making: Patterns

Make, make, make. I actually did it! After one melted lunchbox and a very steamy microwave later I was able to marvel at the genius that is the art of hand dyeing.

After deciding a few weeks ago to try my hand at textile printing to combine my love of patterns and all things textiles I set to work investigating how to go about it. After many blogs, websites and pieces of advice from fellow crafters I decided to settle on some easy carve lino blocks. This way I could work quickly – I’m not the most patient – and also skill level required was beginner to basic! I decided to buy a kit to get me started as this then provided me with the lino discs perfect for stamp making, lino cutters of various shapes and sizes and a handle that I could fix the lino discs on to, to make the printing easier…and in theory less messy. Continue reading

Autumn ready

So, it’s been a while….but i’m back! Back from a summer of crazy amounts of running here, there and everywhere. Now I don’t want to give the wrong impression that I spent all summer at festivals and sunning my self in exotic locations as that is very much NOT the case (I did go to Majorca but it was a very laid back affair and not one bit extravagant). However the summer months seem to affect my attitude towards all thing social and I make plans after plans for visiting and hosting everyone I can think of. I arrange coffee dates, drink dates, weekends at home in Somerset, weekends hosting in Brighton, trips with friends and bbqs on the beach – I just can’t help myself! And it has been wonderful! But I have slipped on the “making and doing” front. So as we wave goodbye to September next week I already find myself settling down and getting cosy for the autumn to take over and winter to slowly return. Continue reading

“Grand” opening: etsy shop now open!

The “shop” is finally open!

Having spent months and months doodling and fiddling and crafting and knitting I decided it was time to reclaim some order in the chaos. So today I finally opened the shop I started setting up many months ago. Continue reading

Sit & knit

 

I grew up in a house with a mum who could knit with her eyes closed and a sister so intent on learning every skill imaginable that by the time we were teenagers she could swiftly knit up a scarf or hat in the time it takes most to cast on. So I dug my heels in and refused to be interested. Looking back I don’t know why. All the women in the generations before me in our family can knit and my sister was firmly being welcomed into the club. Fast forward ten years and my sister now often makes hats, scarves, jumpers, blankets and I’m not talking your straight up granny square blanket either, I’m talking multi coloured, glittery hexagons! Continue reading