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#1day12pics { January }

January 27, 2015

Towards the end of last year I started joining in with #1day12pics on Instagram. Just like the hashtag says on the tin, on the first Saturday of each month you take a picture approximately every hour and share in your IG feed with the hashtag. One day, twelve pictures.

The lovely Emma Davies sends me a reminder each month (which I need, terrible memory). In preparation for writing this post I have just gone to find a link about #1day12pics and discovered her ‘Photography for Blogs‘ website. At first glance it seems that it is a rabbit hole I will go down and only emerge hours later so I am bookmarking it for a closer look.

At the start of January I was feeling very run down and was in bed feeling sorry for myself. That limits what you can photograph so I decided to just take photos of my favourite ‘things’. It was fun and it really cheered me up too.

January #1day12pics 2

Glitter filled acorns, My pendant made from a 100 year old spoon, Laser cut neon Christmas decoration, Christmas table cover made by me, Kate, Picture of Piran as he wouldn’t let me take a photo.

January #1day12pics

Ceramic tray, Flamingo cushion made by me, My favourite mug (although I am only 36), Pansy brooch by @mummylimited, Button, Stripes.

 

Yours Truly

What next?

January 26, 2015

It started with a simple request from Mr C. All he wanted was for me to help him write a letter and CV to help him apply for a job at work. That one little request has set off a chain reaction in my brain and all week I have been struggling with a massive crisis of confidence. I just don’t know who I am anymore. Okay I think that is a little melodramatic, but I am left feeling very overwhelmed and confused.

I knew that this bombshell was bound to hit sometime this year, with Kate starting school in September and the fact that there will be no more Cheesley babies for us (two is enough – and one day in the future we would like to sleep again). What next? Financially I do not need to go back to work, although if I did we could afford more things like holidays and meals out. I could buy more fabric. But once you start thinking about work you start thinking about childcare. What would we do before and after school? What about holidays? They have so many weeks off in the year.

Do I miss working? Sometimes. For a couple of reasons. One, when I am tidying the house for the billionth time and just feeling that my life is Groundhog Day. But the truth of it is that I would still have to do the endless washing up, tidying, organising that I do now, I would just have less time to do it. I really miss being super efficient and organised. I was really good at what I did. I liked working in an office. The company, being tidy, solving problems, writing lists, crossing things off lists. Spreadsheets. When I am at the computer organising the village Toddler group Nearly New Sales I get that feeling back. And it is really good. But I do not get paid for that sadly.

I have been thinking about sewing and Petit Fromage. I love making things, but I think that I have come to the conclusion that I don’t really want to do it for a living. If it becomes a business then there is a lot of work and stress attached to that and I think that it will take away the enjoyment and stress relief that being creative in this way gives me and that would be a really bad thing. I am fully aware that my mental well being is a finely balanced thing. I will continue to sell some bits though, just to fund my fabric habit.

And that brings me full circle back to the working thing. I think that actually working could have a really positive effect on my confidence and well being. However, the extra stresses of being a working parent could negate all of that. There are some things I do know. That I don’t want to be depressed anymore. That I have had days recently where I feel like I am sliding back down a slippery slope again. That when these days come all I can do is sit quietly and rest. Let myself cry, have a bad day and wait for it to pass. Could I do that if I were working too?

spreadsheet

On top of everything we still don’t really know what Mr C is going to do next. He isn’t traveling so much this year, which is great, but he has been working for the same department in the same company for 20+ years and it is definitely time for him to stretch his wings and do something different. Who knows what at the moment but if it means that he will be working longer hours or traveling a lot again well that would mean it would be harder for me to work.

And so I go round and round in circles. I don’t have any idea what to do. I don’t even know what I am good at anymore.

 

Write

National Handwriting Day 2015

January 23, 2015

“My pencil is my friend. Our letters curl and bend, And when ideas refuse to come I chew the other end.”

In Praise of Handwriting, by Julia Donaldson

Piran writing

I love to write. Banging things out on a computer keyboard is all well and good, and the only way to blog but there is still definitely a place for handwriting in my life. As Piran and Kate learn to write I am amazed by how tricky it is. I don’t remember that part of my life at all it is like I have always been able to write (except the fact that at some point in my Primary School I was allowed to progress from using a pencil to a blue handwriting pen). It does take years however, and with learning to write is learning to read and spell, such a lot for little people to master. Mind boggling really when you think about it. And once they get going they then need to learn to write cursively. This afternoon I have been reading about cursive writing and its benefits. Completely fascinating.

As it is National Handwriting Day today I am going to keep this post short and go and write and send a couple of cards. I still have to finish my thank you cards from Christmas, and I am not having a very good week so maybe a letter to a friend pouring out all my woes will make me feel better. I used to keep a journal but my blog replaced that really.

This week I have been playing around with the Inkly App – it allows you to personalised and send postcards and cards for all occasions. You can use your own photos or existing designs. The best part is that you can personalise it with your own handwriting by writing a message, taking a picture and uploading the text. I love this idea and think it will make it much more personal. I have created and sent a couple of cards this week, a lovely thank you card to my parents with a picture of the children playing with their Christmas present and one to myself. Sadly it has not arrived yet, so I will have to show you another day.

So why don’t you switch off the computer and go and write a message and send it to a friend. I guarantee a handwritten message through the post would make anyone’s day.

Live

Kate { January 2015 }

January 20, 2015

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I have suddenly noticed your eyes have got a shade darker.

You have a small jellycat rabbit whose new name is Peter Fearty. No idea where that came from!

You are very, very stubborn at times.

You wait until we have all eaten our dinner before insisting on sitting on Daddy’s lap while he feeds you yours.

Things you say “My legs are tired” (30 seconds after getting out of the car) “I can’t get to sleep” (just after waking in the middle of the night).

You have been known to flounce off and slam your bedroom door at times.

You love watching Wreck It Ralph. But you don’t like Cybugs.

You are always hungry but never really want to eat dinner.

You love to hide, and always want me to build you a den.

Your favourite shape is a semi circle.

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Piran { January 2015 }

January 19, 2015

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This month you got a Strawberry Certificate for getting 25 Golden Points and a Green Slip (very exciting) for improvement in reading.

You are football mad. You play before school, every moment you can at school. You won’t go to the after school club though. You love being ‘Goaler’.

Your topic at school this term is 999 Emergency and you are utterly enthralled by it. You keep telling me how to call 999. And about fires and firefighters.

You will only let me or Daddy take you and pick you up from school. This can be slightly inconvenient.

You eat and eat and eat and eat.

Your two baby teeth that fell out have been replaced by grown up teeth. I miss the gaps.

You love Lego and are starting to get the confidence to build it yourself without help.

You still take your Bubba to bed every night and you want her when you are upset.

We have only just realised Bubba is a girl.

You love taking photos and keep asking for a camera of your own.

Live

Nine Years

January 18, 2015

Today is exactly nine years since Mr C and I went on our first date.

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Us in 2006.

 

paul

Us in 2014.

 

This is my post from the day after, 19th January 2006:

The Crush

Ever since I started working here I have had an attraction to one of the guys in our Logistics Department. Over the past 6 months we had begun to spend more time socially together (in a big group) and I realised he was nice as well as cute. The past three months I have been working with him a bit more and we had developed a slightly awkward friendship.

I always kept my distance because he was very close to another girl that works here and I didn’t want to step on anyone’s toes. I had heard that they liked each other but she was heartbroken and didn’t want a relationship but he really liked her so they were just friends. Before Christmas she also took part in the sponsored walk and I overheard her talking to another friend about a guy she liked. Happily I realised that it wasn’t The Crush that she was talking about. Once I heard this I decided that if there was ever a chance that anything would happen I wouldn’t let worrying about the two of them to hold me back.

Last week we were chatting (he is just moving to a new flat) and he offered to cook me dinner one day when he is settled.

On Tuesday he offered to buy me a drink sometime because I did some crappy work for him. I thought he meant next time we were out but he emailed me shortly after asking if I wanted to go yesterday lunchtime.

We went and had a lovely time.

I said thanks and asked him if he fancied doing it again sometime, perhaps after work when we have a bit longer than a hour.

He said he would really like that and asked if I was free the week after next (as he is busy with the moving and stuff)

I said that I am going on holiday on the Wednesday but I would be free before that.

He asked me if I was free next Thursday evening – he said he would rather go out and would work harder with the unpacking on the other day.

I can’t stop grinning!

I love the fact my blog goes back that far. I can read everything I wrote about our first dates and that is so lovely. He and I knew that this was something special right from the start and now we have a home, have been married 6 years and have two wonderful children. I feel so very lucky today. He is everything to me and I would be much less of a person without him by my side.

Live

M…Make more films

January 17, 2015

As we were going to St Ives from Kelly-Marie Cheesley on Vimeo.

Another item on my Alphabet of Intentions was to make more films. I made a few last year and I love them all so much. I had got out of the habit though and so I have signed up to Xanthe Berkley’s A Year of Creating Time Capsules to keep me focused and encourage me to try new things. Stop motion is definitely on my list, and I want to try and make at least a film a month.

This was from our trip to St Ives on New Year’s Eve. It is 15 years since I have been to St Ives on New Year’s Eve but this time it was a day trip to take Piran to the Lifeboat station rather than all dressed up in fancy dress to see the New Year in. Very different indeed.

Create

Awakening

January 16, 2015

Rachel at Stitched in Color is holding a mosaic contest at the moment. I always want to enter but never seen to remember to sit down and spend time on it.

However there really is nothing better than looking at fabrics and colours I have just spent a very enjoyable half an hour pulling together my mosaic on the theme ‘Ice Parfait‘.

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Winter here is dark. I wake in the dark and before the day is done we are plunged into darkness again. Each morning I watch as the sky lightens, wishing for a glimpse of sun but most likely just watching the sky turn from midnight blue, through a soft blue to the cold grey of most days. Everything seems constantly wet at the moment, but lacks the sunlight to make it sparkle. Browns and greens mingle with the cold hard black lines of naked trees in winter. The air is cold and white. Mist swirls from our breath. The night returns with a softening of the sky which soon slips from blue to black all too soon.

Live

T…Take more portraits of my family

January 16, 2015

camera

Well it seems that floods and other disasters really knock the daily blogging. I feel more centered again today and feel like I can put the stress behind me. And so I am catching up a little with two blog posts today, and looking forward to a weekend at home with my family.

And so onto my Alphabet of Intentions for this year. Starting off with T is for Taking more portraits of my family. I took so many portraits of the children in 2013 when I took part in the 52 project and I really missed doing it last year, without the deadline of a weekly post I just didn’t take the photos. However, in 2013 I felt that I was publishing photos I wasn’t really that happy with because I needed one from each week. One extreme to the other really.

I love using the blog to record the children’s lives and usually I do this through my letters to them. Over the past year or two I have found these harder to write because there is so much to capture and I always worry it will be too long, I won’t get it all in, I might miss something important….the list goes on.

And so I had a thought, something that I want to try this year to see if it works for me and this space. I plan to take portrait shots of both children and then at the end of each month, chose my favourite of the month and then post it with a short letter or text about each child that month. Hopefully that will be the happy medium. I am excited to start and have already taken some pictures that I love this month which is a great feeling. Perhaps I will even get a few of Mr C as well, you never know.

Create

Finish Along 2015 – Quarter 1

January 16, 2015

And now it is time to write my list for 2015. Or at least the first part of the year.

Quilting time.

1. Hexagon Pin Cushion Caddy

2. Schnitzel and Boo Swap Mini Quilt – made and basted. Time to quilt, label and bind.

3. Kindle cover for my Step Mum’s birthday – all cut and ready to go, need to give my sewing machine some TLC first.

4. #makeafriendswap – this will be a bag or fabric basket. I have some fabrics I have pulled but need to double check my swap partner’s preferences.

5. Tiles Quilt – I love this so much and I am so scared that I will spoil it with quilting. I need to get over myself and just go for it.

6. Banner – I have a plan for a banner for a good friend. No more info though as I want it to be a surprise.

7. Zip pouches for a birthday present. I am hoping I can find something that will suit a teenager.

8. A kit bag for Mr C.

9. Sailor Top – I have bought the pattern and I have the fabric. Time to get sewing.

10. Coco for me – this has been on my list for soooo long. Now I have my overlocker I hope that I will just give it a go.

11. Christmas Quilt – I unpicked a table runner that I made this year because I decided it really should  be a quilt. I expect this will roll over into other quarters though.

12. #studioghibliswap Mini Quilt – I have a plan, just need to dig out my grey scraps and get sewing.

13. Banner for me – I have a favourite quote I want to make into a banner to hang in the house. I have a rough sketch but lots of other things on the list take priority at the moment.

14. Oakshott Quilt – I have had fun making and playing with some blocks using a fat eights bundle that I have had for the past 18months. This is a #sewmystash project. I like where it is going but it is an odd size at the moment so need to work out what to do next.

That is quite a list but I love getting it all down so I can see what I am planning on making and get organised. There are some fun things on here, and I really hope I manage to get to make one of the things for me!

I am linking up with Adrianne from On the Windy Side.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side