GRAPEVINE, BOX-STEP, HAMSTRING CURL //

IMG_7126Well now, shall we have un petit (apologies, have just read a text from my Dad that was written in worryingly accurate french…) catch-up? A catch-up accompanied by a garden shot or two, naturally. Said garden shots taken when pigs flew and the sun shone during a weekend. A Bank Holiday weekend. In Blighty. Shocker.

New Job continues as does a whole host of other stuff, namely the adding of a wee string to my qualifications bow; Fully Qualified Exercise to Music teacher.

Yeah baby!

After a challenging few years and a subsequent eating of too many cakes, I hit the gym in late February last year. And it’s wouldn’t be all that wrong to say I’ve barely left since. (“What, back again?”, question the long-suffering reception staff.)

Fast forward to March this year; the daily grind of 3.5 hours commuting to London for 8 hours of bum-on-chair action is sending me steadily loopy and various chats with a lovely ex-colleague have- somehow- led me to google opportunities within the fitness industry. All ready to dismiss the results returned- such an idea is laughable, surely? And besides, I’m not nearly fit enough- an oh so inspiring current teacher of mine offers some truly wise words. Words which, for once, I actually listen to.

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Days later it’s Monday, it’s 6am and I’m London-bound. Except this time I’m decked out in lycra; attire usually exclusive to play and not work.

I spend the next three weeks with my head in an anatomy textbook, feet periodically bursting into a grapevining-boxstepping-hamstring-curling frenzy. I learn 32 count choreography, become a fountain of skeletal knowledge and have a number of wobbles- most questioning what the actual heck I am doing with my life.

With the bombardment of practical and anatomical theory and assessments over and a returning to of normal life- in my case a new job entirely unrelated to the fitness industry (oh life, you rollercoaster, you!)- I choreograph various routines, shout along to music in the car and bark teaching points at peers with whom I would usually participate.

Sporty little socks well and truly practised off, I hoof back up to London and return a fully qualified lady!

 

So yes, that’s my slight wild card of an update.

Anyone for a lunge?

ALL CHANGE, ALL CHANGE //

Yes, yes, yes, long time no chin wagga wag. Life’s gone slightly crackers on me. But before we chat life, can we just talk about the above cake. Are you salivating? Well that was the weekend. Thank goodness my baking skills aren’t up the standard of Daisy’s or I’d be the size of a house I tell you. Actually, make that the Houses of Parliament.

Anyway, the briefest of brief updates is that I’ve got a new jobby job that came unexpectedly (but brilliantly, obvs), am mid-gaining an additional qualification (given this afternoon’s four hours of fruitless practise, however, the gaining of said qualification is questionable) and continue to drop everything that briefly comes into contact with my hands. Living with Yours Truly: not for the faint-hearted.

We also received some absolutely amazing news this past week that has been fourteen or so long months in the making. Needless to say, there was champagne.

On a school night.

OH yes.

Back prontissimo, promise promise.

A POOTLE TO PETWORTH //

IMG_6881I’ve been a fairly miserable being this weekend/ for the last month. Can you tell?

The pinnacle of misery was reached on Saturday afternoon; huddled by the heater on the kitchen floor in my wellies, lycra and long polka dot socks (a sexy visual if ever there was one), I counted the days it had been since I’d last had fun. Since I’d last lived life as a young one.

Forty-five days it had been. Forty-five.

The two hours of arse-scratchingly boring circuits that morning had done little to lighten my mood and the non-event of a day turned into a blanket, sofa, Take Me Out write-off.

IMG_6878IMG_6880And so, as I thumped down the stairs this morning, the Mothership boldly suggested we take a pootle to Petworth in Sussex. I bloomin’ love Petworth and frankly, anything that means we’re not sat shivering in this dark, depressing baltic excuse of a building is totes cool with me.

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We kicked off proceedings in Petworth House– well, the gift shop. The house was closed, alright? I bought a beaut of a jug- a steal at £6 in the sale- and now have it stashed away until Mother’s Day when we’ll pretend “Mum, would you like this?” never happened. Some squishy, leather armchairs in the cafe was our next calling. We like a cultural day out do the Mother and I…

A mug of the frothy stuff in hand, we had a chinwagga wag about life before a bitterly cold wander around Petworth itself. We popped our heads around the door of The Hungry Guest (crackers prices but the most stupendous branding) and fell into their coffee shoppy up the road moments later, lured by the promise of more froth.

IMG_6885IMG_6894Further discussion entailed- matters of a deep nature, such as whether my face was looking thinner etc- before we made our way back, narrowly avoiding being run over by a mad man in a van, for a brief wander of the grounds.

IMG_6903A lovely little day out it was. You’ve got to be grateful for Mums and their capacity to listen to and appear interested in endless hours (in my case, probably years) of life woes.

And their unconditional love of messes sat on kitchen floors in wellies, lycra and long polka dot socks.

Thanks Mumma Bear.

FRUSTRATED MUSINGS OF A SUNDAY NATURE //

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I’ve spent today feeling frustrated. Thoroughly frustrated. Frustrated at the lack of progress in so many aspects of my life; work, rest, play. I’m a cauldron of energy with restricted means through which to channel any creativity, due to matters that are out of my control- the most frustrating thing of all.

The family and I are living in a building that’s dark and damp; walls are screaming to be knocked down and carpets are needing to be pulled up, but nothing can be touched. Not yet. Instead I must Pin and plan, explore and discover, jot down and dream. (I still absolutely loathe Pinterest, for the record, but it is handy- albeit ludicrously slow.)

Filled with eleven and a half long, slow, cold months of imagining, The Mind of Me is reaching fever pitch. Even the pooches are entering a state of increasing discontentment and they’ve got their luxurious kennel in which to lie, a Mutt House lovingly painted by my good self last summer. Nice little afternoon project I had thought. Seven hours later and, finally, the wretched thing was covered in English Heritage Pale Jasmine.

Never. Again.

To get back to my slightly more serious point- not that matters of the mongrel variety aren’t of the utmost importance- a plea to those at the top; kindly pop a fair few rockets up your rears and get a move on. Or it will be my frustrations that come rocketing, at full force, in your direction.

HUMPH.

P.s If you’re just itching to see my canine-related handy work you may have to pleasure of doing so here.

LIVING THE FREELANCE LIFE //

I’ve been agonising over the opening and closing paragraphs of an article I’m mid-writing for, what feels like, a number of decades. After failed attempt six last night, I gave up and went home. Home being the electric-blanket-heated, snotty, dribbled-on haven that is my bed. I spoil you with such sexy visuals, I know.

But today. Today we’ve had, what would appear to be, a slight breakthrough. Unusually for me, it didn’t fall into place with the clap of thunder and bolt of lightening ferocity typical of such situations. But they do say slow and steady wins the race and that it has been.

I’ve cast aforementioned write-up aside for now and shall return for a final look-over and edit tomorrow, before I send it on it’s merry way. I’m hoping Thursday’s fresh eyes will read prose of an earth-shatteringly brilliant nature but, frankly, anything is possible. Fingers crosseth.

On another note; posts of a “musings” nature have come thick and fast as of late, haven’t they? Someone needs a smidge less pooch chat and a shite-load more human contact in their lives, ahem. Though I did spend an hour and ten minutes on the phone to an absolutely cracking chum- does that count?

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT BODEN //

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WARNING: Creative juices were spilled in the making of this blog post.

My feelings towards fashion, you ask? Fashion smashion. Start chatting fashion and I run for the hills. Suggest shopping clothing and I sprint for the mountains.

To me, clothes shopping is like stabbing eyeballs repeatedly with a freshly-sharpened steak knife. It is like slicing limbs off one by one with a super-charged chainsaw; hanging off the edge of a cliff with nothing but a dislodged fingernail and a toothpick.

The thing with clothes shopping, friends, is that there is never a reward. I never leave the shop bag-swinging and looking hot to frigging trot- even before my eyeballs have been stabbed, limbs sliced and soul lost to the sea.

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But Boden. We need to talk about Boden; the kings of the catalogue world. A world whereby precisely zero energy is lost to fruitless but effortful clothes shopping trips. Now I have so much time for Boden.

As a young one I poured over the Mini catalogue and circled everything that my heart desired in the hope that the Boden fairy might leave it under my pillow. As a slightly older one I still sit and circle everything, except this time, sadly, I’m about as hopeful of the Boden fairy arriving as I am of squeezing into that aged 5-6 polka dot skirt. (And even if pigs flew, could this twenty year old really pull off that beaut of a green striped t-shirt complete with iced lolly appliqué and flower sleeves?)

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Boden’s beautifully british catalogues have always captivated me, as have their savvy approach when it comes to the old marketing lingo. They just leave you feeling happy, don’t they? I positively want to greet them with a sloppy french smacker after reading the chummy repartee that accompanies all promotional material.

Jobby on the Side purposes resulted in access to the press website being gained today, wherein some cracking images lie. So because I’ve always been just the most hummungous fan of their art direction and styling, I thought I’d share a few faves avec vous. Don’t mind if I do.

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(I mainly included the last photo because he is wearing sexy specs. But shh, don’t tell. We could also discuss how mighty fine image two is looking, non?)

And no, this is not “sponsered by Boden”. I just got carried away in a moment of article-that-I-should-be-writing procrastination. Alright?

P.s Obvs, these images are not mine. All courtesy of the brainboxes at Boden, aren’t they.