When we pressed go on the printing press at the beginning of January, we didn’t realise that the first copy of the book would be in my hands for Easter.
Such a lovely surprise, we are so excited!
The idea of a book has been a dream for a while and it was only when Clare Grist Taylor approached me to chat through some opportunities that it started to become a reality. Jo Christian and Gail Lynch, from Pimpernel Press, came to visit in July ’21 and we signed the book deal a few months later. Anna steered me as I got writing, Becky designed each page beautifully, Jo came to take the cover photo and it was ready to go to print in January. I literally have just this one copy, but many more are on their way, they will be in all good bookshops by July, and can be pre-ordered now.
It was great to work with the team at Pimpernel Press and I love the structure that they brought to our story as we journey towards self sufficiency, step by step, bringing a natural progression towards living the ‘Good Life in the City’.
If we want to live more sustainably, a good place to start is with the one thing that we consume everyday – our food. If we want to get more involved with our food, then making it from scratch is a great place to start.
MAKE: includes Bread, Cheese, Marmalade, Sausages and Pasta
If we are regularly making our own food, then maybe we’d like to grow some fresh ingredients to incorporate into our meals?
GROW: starts with no outdoor space and moves through a back garden to an allotment and on to foraging
Anyone who grows their own will tell you that as harvests come thick and fast, a number of preserving skills will help manage those gluts, be that cabbage or courgettes, and there are so many ways to help us enjoy our home grown food throughout the year.
PRESERVE: looks at Drying, Freezing, Jam, Pickling, Fermenting, Chutney and more
So, you’re now growing your own fruit and veg, you’ve filled your larder with all kinds of condiments and preserves, your freezer is packed with apple and rhubarb fully prepped for pies and crumbles and you know that there’s more out there to explore… Maybe it’s time to look into keeping animals for food?
KEEP: Chickens, Bees and Larger Livestock
Finally, with that sense of adventure, achievement and thankfulness, we take time throughout the year to Celebrate!
CELEBRATE: Valentine’s Day, Easter, Harvest and Christmas
We show, with our traditions, tips and favourite food, how we look back with thankfulness and forward with hope as we continue our journey to all that’s ahead.
- We will be representing the London Bee Keeping Association as we work with School Food Matters to teach school children about the importance of bees as both pollinators and honey makers
- Country Living Magazine have asked us to create a Hen Corner Garden, complete with bee hive and chickens, for both the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival and RHS Flower Show Tatton Park
- We start our book promotion talks and events next week (did you know we’ve written a book?!)
- Support our first Eco Garden Workshop at our local church
- Get down the allotment – I’m hoping to grow all the ingredients for this year’s award winning Garden Piccalilli
- Plan to expand our honey bees and hope for a good harvest this year
Let’s hope that spring leads nicely onto summer and our young seedlings have opportunity to thrive and grow strong, what are you growing this year?