Home – Blogtober Day 11

A full third of the way through Blogtober, and I’ve had a good run of soapy posts (with a single bath bomby interlude for good measure), so perhaps it’s time to share something a little more personal.

Whoah now, don’t get excited. No please…don’t 😀 I’m just going to show you where I live, that’s all. And not even my house – the closest you’re getting is my village. And, if I’m entirely honest, I probably wouldn’t even share its name with you here, except it’s plastered all over my soap labels so I can hardly keep it a secret 🙂

I live in a small village called Beddgelert, within the Snowdonia National Park in North West Wales.  It’s nestled in a valley mere minutes away from the foot of Snowdon itself, and surrounded by mountains and rivers, yet only 20 minutes away from the coast and some beautiful beaches.  As someone who loves being outside, walking the hills or swimming in the sea, I honestly cannot think of anywhere in the UK I’d rather live (despite the rather high level of rainfall we have to put up with!)

Beddgelert

                       Beddgelert

Beddgelert

                          Beddgelert

This river runs right through the middle of the village and is ideal for a dip on hot days:

The River

                         The River

Or we can walk a little further downriver and spend some hours messing about in the water here:

River Glaslyn

                       River Glaslyn

A lot of the time though we try to get up high.  The six year old seems to have boundless energy,  but the three year old is still somewhat limited in how far and/or high she can go so we’re slowly increasing the length and elevation of our walks.

View of Llyn Dinas

             View of Llyn Dinas

Cwm Bychan

                     Cwm Bychan

View from the Miner's Track (up Snowdon)

View from the Miner’s Track (up Snowdon)

On the Watkin Path (up Snowdon)

On the Watkin Path (up Snowdon)

I was brought up here, but spent a good 25 years of my life studying and working elsewhere, latterly in Manchester. There’s no doubt in my mind that moving back home to bring our children up in this area was one of the best things we’ve ever done.

My my, these blog posts are getting later and later – this one I’m publishing with just 2.5 hours to spare, but Blogtober, you’ve not beaten me yet!!

 

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I’m back…

…definitely, absolutely, for good this time!!

I’m so sorry – the last two months have had so much going that I’ve struggled to find time to get on here to post, and then, over the last couple of days, I realised that I’ve  been putting it off as I didn’t know where to start. This is just a quick post to ‘break the spell’ as it were – I have loads more posts in the pipeline.

We finally moved! We’ve been in our new home for about 6 weeks now. It’s a ‘doer-upper’ and there really is so much to do, but it’s ours, it’s warm, it’s dry and we love it! Our eldest (4y) started full time school last month and has settled really well, and our youngest (18m) becomes more of a little monkey every day. Literally – she will climb, or attempt to climb, ANYTHING!

The soap business continues to grow, though with the little one demanding so much of my time I’m wary of committing to too much too soon.  My soap is now in 5 retail outlets, and I’m in discussions about another project. I did my first custom order of party favours recently, and the last craft fair I did was really successful. I’ve also put together my first ‘multi-item’ gift sets, experimented with piping, and invested in a new piece of hardware for the business – an amazing soap cutter imported from the US.  All good stuff and I’ll fill in the gaps in future posts.

And finally (because I refuse to post a photo-free update), I created my first exfoliating soap:

Super Scrubby Peppermint Soap

            Super Scrubby Peppermint

Oatmeal and ground apricot stones make this soap wonderfully scrubby – great for gardeners’ or mechanics’ hands. It’s fragranced with nothing more than pure peppermint essential oil, and simply coloured with a green mica. They’re not the prettiest bars I’ve ever created, but oh they do feel good on tired feet 😀

…and two months later…

Wow, I realised on Monday that it was exactly two months since I last posted on here.  TWO MONTHS!! I knew I’d take a bit of time out while we packed up our home and made the move to Wales, but I didn’t realise I would neglect the blog so thoroughly – so sorry!

Anyway, we’ve left the big city and are now settling into a much more rural way of life. This is the amazing view from my bedroom window:

photo 1

Not bad eh? We’re still staying with my mum, who has kindly allowed her peaceful home to be invaded by our family of four (thanks mum!) but we’re in the process of buying our new home – in the same village – yippee!

Needless to say the majority of our belongings are still boxed up and in storage and I’ve not been able to make soap BUT I decided last night that enough was enough – I had to get back to it. Mainly because a) I miss it, hugely and b)The Soap Mine is getting seriously low on stock…

So, I dug out all my soaping gear, whisked up a simple 3 colour ITP (in the pot) swirl (and oh oh oh loved every minute of it :-D):

photo 2(1)

  Delicious is scented with a dupe of DKNY’s Be Delicious fragrance, and smells utterly gorgeous. Coloured with two shades of green mica and titanium dioxide. Cut pics to follow soon.

Exciting News!

We recently had some very exciting news – it’s not soap related, but it will (sadly) impact on my soapmaking for the next couple of months.

Although we live in the north of England, my husband and I are both Welsh, and have always said that we would move back there eventually. The one thing preventing us from doing so was the lack of available work in rural Wales where we wanted to live, but against all odds it’s happened. My husband got a new job, and we’re going home!!

It’s all very exciting – the new job starts on the 1st March, so we have a bit of time, but once Christmas and New Year are out of the way it’ll soon come round. So the house is on the market, and we’ve just spent the weekend looking for a new home (preferably one with a dedicated soaping area – woop!)

Anyway, the upshot is there’s an awful lot to do between now and then, so I’ve decided to put the soaping on the back burner for a couple of months and focus on the big move.

In the meantime please don’t go away – I’ll be updating on relocation progress on this site, (no doubt whinging about missing making soap lol) and will also share some of the wonderful soapy blogs that I’ve grown to love over the past year.

I do however have a couple more recent makes to share with you – coming very soon 🙂