Family | One year, life and cycles.

I find blogging, much like life, goes in cycles. At the moment it’s a quiet time at Fishfingers for tea. Partly through circumstance and partly through choice. Things are busy, routines are changing and focus is shifting at the moment. Though I am feeling more organised than I was, finding the time to fit everything in is still proving difficult and, truth be told, I’m not sure I even want to.

One of the major changes is that Rich has moved across to night shifts. The timing could have better what with the start of them coinciding with the school holidays but we’re finding that there are many advantages.

The change of routine, and a husband with an apparent need for sleep, has forced Izzy and I to think of things to do together that take us out of the house in the afternoons. We’ve been stomping in woods, finally getting round to sorting out the garden and going on little adventures. This can only be a good thing as I am the first to admit that we had fallen into the “I’m busy so it’s easier just to stay in” trap.  The other perhaps bonus, depending on your point of view, is that I’m naturally offline more. It’s hard to get a signal in the middle of nowhere.

Most of my life is conducted online, both work and social. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and I wouldn’t be able to do half the things I do now without the internet but I know that I’m in danger of being that parent who spends more time looking at a screen than paying attention to the small person in front of me. And I am finding that the more that I am forced to be offline, the less time I actually want to spend there anyway. I work in the mornings when Izzy is at school and again in the evenings when she is in bed and Rich is at work. Before, the evening could flash by in a blur of blogging, commenting and flicking from Facebook to Twitter to Candy Crush and back again. But I have been feeling the urge to pick up a book, watch a film or simply lay in a hot bath until my fingertips wrinkle. I’d forgotten how nice unplugging myself from the online world can be.

Rich and I pass like ships in the night when he’s working. For four days at a time we see very little of each other and there’s a need for the time when he’s off work to spent focusing on our family. On passing on the small details of our lives that carry on whilst he’s working through night and sleeping in the day. And that need means that, once work has finished for the day, the laptop gets turned off and my phone isn’t glued to my hand.

The kitchen is still as busy, though we have been relying on our quick and easy favourites. To aid Rich’s transition into a new team I’m not ashamed to admit that I have been paving the way with cake and brownies. It’s always a little nerve racking baking for new people but so far the feedback has been more than positive. I’ve been playing with a lemon curd drizzle loaf which still requires some work but seemed to disappear fast enough. A moist but dense almost pound cake run through with a generous amount of lemon curd and topped with a simple lemon juice and sugar syrup whilst still warm.

All of this is meant to say I’m still here. I am posting less and I’m not as active on social media at the moment but I’m still here. I don’t know where I’d be without this little blog but it has to take a bit of a back seat at the moment. Having said that though, I realised a few days ago that it was around this time a year ago that Fishfingers for tea went self hosted. It also means that this blog has been around in one form or another for just over three and half years. And that I’ve been blogging in different places for eight years or so. Big numbers in my book. So I took the blog offline over the weekend and have given it a bit of a redesign in celebration. If you read my posts in a reader* or via email you might want to pop across for a peek. There’s still some work to be done but the nuts and bolts are there.

So happy semi birthday my dear blog. And thank you to each and every one of you that have stuck around even though I’m not here much at the moment. Cycles have their natural rhythm so I doubt it will be that long until things are moving quickly again. I think it’s time for coffee and cake….

Apologies if you have already seen the photos on Instagram, I’m finding it easier to keep in touch with people over there at the moment.

*Speaking of readers, the news that Google are to retire Google reader means that I am searching for alternatives. I’m leaning towards Feedly at the moment but if you have any suggestions please feel free to leave them in a comment.