Having a two and four year old and a husband that works long hours and travels a fair amount has meant that finding, and then maintaining, any sort of hobby over the past few years has been incredibly difficult. I'm never without my littlest during the day and then evenings are spent holding the fort or catching up on all the things that didn't get done while I was playing 'choo choos'. I have an increasingly long list of things that I'm going to do once both boys are in school and while some days I sigh because I'd really like to head off in to the woods unaccompanied to take some photographs, I'm not in any real rush for that time to come. It will get here soon enough and surely being able to watch Newsnight ... okay, reruns of Gossip Girl ... in silence is overrated, right? How much fun can it be to read a page of a book without being asked a million questions about how chameleons 'work' and if they're battery powered? Who wants to bake a batch of cookies without two chairs being scraped across the kitchen floor and four hands trying to sneak 'samples' of the mixture? All very, very boring, I'm sure.
Even this little blog of mine is not safe. The boys don't feature in a lot of posts but believe me, they're most definitely there behind the scenes. You might see my smiling face in the sidebar but it's really a family affair. There's no chance that I can get any writing done while they're awake because that's 'boring' no matter how many Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle colouring books I put in front of them. But taking photographs? That's where my boys come in to their own. I see bright futures in photography or styling for them. It could be finding the perfect napkin, suggesting a certain tray or vase to feature in the background, or even deciding that a photograph of two beautiful, handmade and hand painted blue-drop mugs from Little Snug needs some teeny toes in it to really show them off.
Or perhaps the cheekiest smile ever.
One thing's for sure, the boys have certainly contributed to my increased knowledge of photo editing. I've become quite adept at cropping images although I occassionaly leave their little fingers in the shot as a bit of a momento. You'll be trying to spot them from now on, won't you?
If you haven't come across Little Snug, who kindly sent me these two mugs for all the cold cups of tea that I get to 'enjoy', they're a lovely company who not only sell beautiful products for the home but make the most stunning bespoke furniture. At incredibly affordable prices. And handcrafted in England too (I know, not Wales, but hey, that would just be too good to be true, wouldn't it?).
The best thing about Little Snug though, is their 'Design Your Table' service. It's a genius idea. You can choose your table style and how many people you would like it to seat, then select the type of edging you want on the solid oak top, and finally the shape of the legs and the colour that you would like them. Having a quick play on their website, I went for a rectangle one seating eight people, with bull nose edging, and elsa legs in jasmine white. With a little click of the 'Add to Cart' button it could be mine in two weeks for just £825. Not bad, right? A hand crafted table to my exact requirements, no flat pack in sight. That's a pretty good deal. The one downfall for me is that I have a penchant for walnut over oak but then I'm a picky thing. And having studied the sample box (which you can order for free), the natural oak is beautiful.