Do you remember chain letters? Back in the day before email when you had to keep the chain going or bad luck would find you? I hated them and always binned them and I do the same with similarly stupid emails, Facebook posts etc etc You make your own luck in life after all.
But, I got a sort of chain letter blog hop type thing a couple of weeks ago from the lovely Christine over at Little house on the corner. Christine is a great blogger, full of practical ideas, advice and incredible inspiration. Not the type to forward any old junk chain mail – nope, this is a different sort of chain where you get to maybe discover blogs you may not have found otherwise.
So, for the first time ever, I have accepted this ‘chain’ and am now expected to share some current photos of my home and then answer these 4 questions:
- What am I working on?
- How does my work differ from those in my genre?
- Why do I write/create what I do?
- How does your writing creative process work?
So, first off, here’s some photos of how it’s all looking right now – all available in more detail in the ‘After’ section if you’re that way inclined.
A year or so ago I would never have though this set of pics would have been possible. But yep, that’s my home. I live here! We still find ourselves contemplating that fact when we stop to look around – we did this, it’s ours. Every single last bad bit of brushwork or wonky line – all ours.
So, onto the questions:
What am I working on?
Right now, I’m concentrating on perfectly baking my daughter…..I’ve had a bun in the oven for the past 26 weeks! Honestly, it’s been a pretty tough ride so far – I’ve had to put up with quite a few health problems but after years of longing would honestly put up with anything at all! Emotionally also, it’s been supremely difficult and I miss the love, wisdom, comfort and support of my beloved mum more than anything in the world.
Our Big News also means that, inevitably, we’re working on the nursery. It’s been painted and is awaiting carpet, then furniture and then decorative touches. I wish everything you needed for a baby wasn’t so damn expensive because it means we can’t have everything we’d like(!), but we’re certainly planning to make it special.
We also had the main family bathroom left to do and had planned to do it in the next couple of years. But now, realising we’ll be using it every day for our little’un we’re pressing ahead with that too.
I’ll share a couple of pics when it’s done but don’t have high design expectations, we’re keeping it strictly cheap and cheerful – not the grown-up, indulgent spa feel I had originally planned on. Seriously folks, we pretty much ran out of cash a while ago!
How does my work differ from those in my genre?
Ha! I don’t even deserve to be put on a par with others in the DIY/design/renovation genre!!
a) I am a RUBBISH blogger. I’m not at all regular or reliable…..I received this nomination 2 weeks ago and have only just got round to it…sorry Christine! I still have things to post about that we completed in the house over 6 months ago. Rubbish.
b) We don’t have a clue what we’re doing, it’s all entirely trial and error, we never take on any DIY above the absolute basics. I don’t know any interior design ‘rules’ and just go with my gut and what we like. I don’t even know how to make my blog look any prettier or have a better structure and, honestly, can’t be arsed!! It works doesn’t it?!
c) I’m not good at being a part of the blogging community. I’ve (virtually) met some lovely lovely people but I’m no good at growing my followerers, watching my hit counter or seeking opportunities. I suppose that brings us nicely onto the next question…
Why do I write/create what I do?
The only reason we started this blog was to keep family up to date with our home improvements and, honestly, I don’t think they even read it! We have friends dotted all over the country, and the world, too so it was also a great way to be able to share with them without totally clogging up our Facebook feeds.
And we also wanted some kind of diary of the process – something to look back on and be proud of when we see just how crazy we were but how far we’ve come.
And finally, this is a bit ‘Miss World’ but…I wanted to give something back. We made nearly all our decisions aided by Google, looking at other people’s pictures, ideas and – mainly – paint choices. So, it’s the one thing I try to be really good at – tagging photos – so people who are umming and ahhing over Hague Blue or Pigeon or Elephant’s Breath can easily find our images and, hopefully, help inform their opinion. I have, more recently, been accused by a dear friend of peddling “house porn”, which amuses me greatly.
How does your writing creative process work?
If you know anything about me by now you’ll know…it doesn’t. I have no plan, no method, no structure. I just woffle a bit, whack it up and hope for the best!
I guess the one thing I have been surprised about is how much I have found myself writing about my mum and, in a strange way, it’s kept her a part of all this. Growing up, she fought so hard to keep a roof over our heads and keep us fed that such grandeur for me now would have been unimaginable. She would have thought we were crazy for taking it on but would have encouraged us every step of the way. So yeah, I suppose that, through this blog, she’s somehow managed to be a massive influence. And, man, she’d have found that funny….pushing up daisies and yet still muscling in!!
As for practicalities of writing, it’s usually when Oly is on the phone to his parents, ironing his shirts (no, I’m not THAT good a wife to do it for him), or wallowing in the bath. Whenever I can grab the time really. And there is usually this little bundle beside me:
Thanks again to Christine for the nomination for this post – if you haven’t checked out Christine and Jan’s blog before it’s certainly worth it. Their DIY projects are ambitious (seriously, knocking down walls type crazy stuff) and all shared in perfect detail. They’re also incredibly generous with sharing printables if you fancy a go at some crafty things yourself.
And in turn, I nominate Karen from Well I Guess This Is Growing Up. Like Christine and myself she’s another Northern blogger! Karen is very honest about successes, failures, costs and quandaries as well as talking you through her thought process. She’s also what I would class as a ‘proper’ blogger – a well designed blog, regular posts, a variety of content, good pics etc. And I have a special soft spot for her…she’s about to become a mum too!!