Reading challenge: September

Get in!! I did 3 books again September (although I’m still disappointed by the measly 2 in August!) and they were good ones!

  1. Rooftoppers by Katherin Rundell
    I LOVE a good kids book and this 8-12 age range really has some brilliant books! Rooftoppers was amazing AND the illustrations are beautiful. The story in this book is really heart wrenching and considering it’s a children’s book it doesn’t dress up grief or play down the use of language. I learnt a lot about Cello’s. It has such delightful imagery and it’s a really special story. Throughly recommend.
  2. Kind of Cruel by Sophie Hannah
    This book is a total mind blag, SO SO interesting if you like books that have a psychological twist. I liked the one you have a therapists point of view in it as well with, what I presumed, were real facts. I don’t think the blurb on the back does this book justice.
  3. Hot Milk by Deborah Levy
    So many people have raved about this book on Twitter, it’s been a best seller in lots of magazines as well…but I did not rate it. For the first half I found the story quite hard to follow and a bit depressing. The way it’s written means there are lots of descriptions I found didn’t really make sense. I enjoyed the second half a lot more, maybe I had got into the swing of the narrative a bit more? But the main characters mother was just driving me insane!

Essie Media: Courses October

Some more courses coming your way for October! September’s courses booked up FAST so if you’re interested please drop me an email at




For more information on the courses please visit my other website Essie Media

I have now also added further services to the website and I specialise in marketing and promotion of arts businesses and self employed artists and crafts people.

1 year of happiness

Can you believe it’s been a whole YEAR since me and Monkey man said ‘I do?’ I never shared any snippets of the wedding with you because it was all a bit rushed and I was poorly for a few weeks after the wedding.

On Sunday, which was our anniversary, we had a lovely day together climbing (it’s been nearly 2 years since I’ve climbed!!) and then we had dinner at my parents house.

Here’s a few snippets from the wedding last year.

Tromping delight

Ivy got her first pair of wellies!! This a momentous occasion for me because as you know I LOVE my wellies, and I love mud and water and fields and tromping. Turns out so does she (thank god!) here’s a few snaps from some tromping days we’ve had recently.

This ^^ is at Levens Deer Park, I love goats so I was so happy to get so close.

How beautiful is Loughrigg?!

The last of the summer: Italy

Sorry I’ve been MIA lately, I’ve been having a little detox from the online world, Ivy is so fully on now that I barely get a second to draw breath never mind take any photos! Anyway here’s a few snaps from our recent trip to Italy!

We stayed very close to Pisa, we’ve stayed near to here before, but I would recommend perhaps going a little further out towards Lucca, it’s much prettier.

Reading challenge: August

I am GUTTED that I was unable to read 3 books in August! I only got through two, which I’m so disappointed about…I sort of feel like it’s ruined the entire challenge! Anyway here’s the two I read this month. Both good, both very different from one another.

  1. Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
    This was amazing! Its not really a genera I usually read, its sort of fantasy but I also felt it was totally believable somehow. It’s very addictive reading, you’re desperate to find out what is going to happen next. I loved all the little imaginary twists and turns.
  2. The Beautiful Dead by Belinda Bauer
    I’m still undecided if I enjoyed this…I read it really quickly, it was a very easy read, but it was a little bit disturbing. It was also quite gory. I would recommend if you like murder mysteries, the part where you’re inside the mind of the killer is well written but again its a bit disturbing.

A brief bit of sun – August

Hasn’t August been such a rubbish month so far?! Some days I’ve honestly been cold! It’s not felt like summer at all, except for this one weekend just before we went to Chamonix.
It’s days like these that I appreciate living in the English Lake District so much!

After getting soaked ^^

Also this has nothing to do with sunshine or outdoors but I’ve just finished this book ^^ and oh my goodness it’s so good, like nothing I’ve read before!

A week in Chamonix

If you’re an avid follower of this blog you’ll know that Chamonix was the first place Monkey Man and I went as a couple. It was about this time 5 years ago!! So I was very happy we were able to take Ivy there last week.

Chamonix is a really family friendly place (although expensive!) but there’s lots to do if you like walking and biking and going up high!

Here’s a collection of pictures from the trip, they’re all a bit random because I didn’t take enough per day to do a post per place we visited, but there were lot’s of mountains, waterfalls, baguette and ice cream!

^^ Ice creams for the win!

Reading challenge: July

I struggled with my reading challenge this month, I’ve spent the evenings doing work instead of having my nose in a book so I thought I wouldn’t be able to manage 3 books this month…but I did!

  1. Elijah’s Mermaid by Essie Fox
    I was drawn to the cover of this book (I know you shouldn’t be!!) and it was honestly brilliant. I found it quite hard to read at first, there’s a lot of description and so you need to be fully awake to read it properly BUT the story is just amazing. It’s set in the 1800’s, there’s magic and mermaids, and murder and love and a crazy artist…it’s just great.
  2. The couple next door by Shari Lapena
    My sister bought this and then lent it me before she read it but I’d seen people tweeting about it on Twitter saying it was good…and it was, although I found some parts a bit unbelievable and all the characters seemed to be a little too entwined. It also scared me a bit as it’s about a little baby getting kidnapped, but still worth a read I think.
  3. The Marsh King’s Daughter by Karen Dionne
    I’d actually started reading another book as my 3rd book of July but then this dropped into my lap, and oh my goodness it’s brilliant! I read this in 2 days, I couldn’t put it down, its such an interesting story and really gripping. I especially liked the narrative told from then and now.

Something exciting!

Well this is RATHER exciting…

This is my new little venture and I’m so excited to share it with you! From September I will be running courses on blogging, social media and marketing and I even have a snazzy new website.

The first set of courses are here:
Social Sessions – September (12th, 11-12.30)
Social media for the self employed artist (whatever medium you work in) – September (15th 10am -12pm)
Social media & blogging for your small business – September (27th 10am – 12pm)

For more information on what area’s the courses cover or for more information click hereΒ 

Thank you for your continued support and for reading my blog, hopefully my courses can help you out a bit too!