As well as the things you’ll see me talking about regularly on the blog, I have other projects I’m undertaking in the background – my labours of love:
Peonies & Peace
During Christmas of 2019, I decided I wasn’t busy enough(!), and by the middle of January 2020, I’d launched my little online store. As I write, it remains in its infancy, but I’m incredibly proud of what I’ve accomplished thus far, and I continue to work hard behind the scenes.
Peonies & Peace sells ethical and sustainable clothing and accessories featuring positive and/or powerful feminist messages, as well as some gender neutral kids clothing. Most items are available in baby to adult sizing, because twinning in winning!
Most recently I’ve add a line of planners and positivity and wellbeing journals:
Moral Story Books for Children
I’ve recently started a new series recommending moral story books for children. The idea behind it is to share and review children’s books designed to support difficult conversations, which we and other parents love. It’s still early days, but all being well it might just become my proudest achievement.
The plan is to have regular reviews, including guests slots from some of my favourite bloggers, and in time I’ll also add a resources page. You can read more about the project here.
A couple of years ago I published an ebook about breastfeeding, which you can read about here. My greatest ambition is to one day have a paperback published properly, because my writing is deemed worthy! I have a couple of ideas that I will eventually get around to working on properly.
Watch this space…
In 2017 I decided to take part in the Living Arrows linky Donna runs over at What the Redhead Said. I love the concept behind it – and having been treated to a new camera for Christmas, I really wanted to work on my photography. My goal was to link up each week, with my aim being that by the end of the year I’d have a lovely collection of photographs to show for it.
I continued with the project for almost a full year until part way through I became aware of an unscrupulous site scraping my photographs and offering them to download for free as stock images. Considering how careful I’ve always been with showing my girls’ faces, I found that very difficult to deal with. For that reason among others, I made the difficult decision to stop taking part, and I’ve removed all the posts I completed as part of this photography project.
My Positivity Project
With the day to day stresses involved with being a parent, it’s all too easy to become overwhelmed, and to combat that in 2018 I ran a mini course, My Positivity Project – with a blogging friend. Mim is an expat living in Australia, so coordinating everything was interesting! The idea behind the project can be summed using my mission statement, which is:
Promoting mindfulness and gratitude for a more appreciative life – particularly in and of our children; championing gentle and supportive parenting which models the behaviours we wish to foster in our little ones.
Supporting parents just like us to live more fulfilled lives was a fantastic feeling. I’ve suffered my fair share of anxiety, so I understand very well how challenging my mindset can be – both for myself and those closest to me.
Whilst enthusiastic about our little community, Mim and I both saw the opportunities brought about by our blogs grow in 2018, and we had to make the difficult decision not to conclude My Positivity Project.
Nonetheless, it was a worthwhile venture which I’m proud to have been a part of.
Maternity Patient Partner
In 2019 I took on this voluntary position for Healthwatch Essex. My role is to help improve maternity services in Essex, both pre and postnatally.
I’ve chosen to take this responsibility on following a very difficult and traumatic delivery, followed by a wonderfully healing one; my hope is that I can utilise this platform to advocate for local women and help ensure they’re more likely to experience positive birth experiences like my second.