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145: Adventure of a Lifetime

Image courtesy of Erica Davies The Edited and image taken by Eleanor Skan for Monsoon with Denby

Image courtesy of Erica Davies The Edited and image taken by Eleanor Skan for Monsoon with Denby

Work hard, play hard, right? It's the only way to squeeze the social life Lady B wants into the work life, and mama life I got going on. 

As I lay slumped on the sofa on Sunday evening, still in my kitchen clothes and still nursing a sore head, Lord B told me "you really don't have to try so hard to play hard y'know, not if you have to work so hard." Ummm, YES I DO, because I want to. I also want to work, I also want to spend any free time from the kitchen playing with Mini B (who, at the moment, is just the most divine little human who makes everything seem so bloody fantastic). So, yes, yes I do. I said just that in a really defiant, grumpy tone as Alex from Love Island danced his way off my television screen at the closing credits of their very scripted round-up party. (What was that about? I preferred a shouty Kady, a make up free Olivia, and Alex just wondering around aimlessly in his trunks. Yes please, thank you.) Lord B then went on to say; "You've also been in the crankiest of moods this weekend in between the hangovers (plural), the refill Prosecco, and the oven breaking." This was true. Mostly because I had to excuse myself from a get-together with my school friends because there were just too many biscuits to bake on my Sunday bake, so I had to spread it over the Saturday too, but I also had a little evening out planned (sorta in my honour) so I couldn't possibly cancel that, but I was also nursing what appeared to be a two day hangover from the Small Business Saturday 2016 launch (see pic below). Lady B knows she has reached the days where a hangover is not so easily dismissed, especially when she's been drinking on an empty stomach (seriously, how do I not know how downright foolish that is?!) and especially when I had to run to a photo shoot with the fabulous Erica Davis of The Edited fame for Monsoon and Denby nursing said hangover, taking rush hour tubes and a crammed train back to the Suffolk / Essex border with all the Latitude festival folk.

Fail. Total and utter fail. 

Image courtesy of the Small Business Saturday team

Image courtesy of the Small Business Saturday team

The weekend was busy. The WEEK had been busy. I was working hard. I was also burning the candle because, didn't I deserve to after y'know, getting up with Mini B at five, racing to the kitchen, powering through, and still making it for nursery pick up, bath and bed. Lady B constantly lives out of a bag between home and Mother Mooncake's (who helps with the childcare on a Wednesday bake) as well as forever loading, unloading the car with pre-baked goods, packaged baked goods, and props for shoots, evening London launches and such like. Lady B constantly has "lists" on the go, be it on my phone, on actual pen and paper, or just somewhere in my tiny little brain. I lose track of what clothes are where, whether I packed any knickers, and if my pastry cutters are in my kitchen bag or the unit. It's haphazard, it's chaotic, and I love it. It is also bloody exhausting. And after a week of tiptoe-on-the-go, with some pretty hardcore drinking for Lady B (I'm a lightweight folks, it doesn't take me a lot and when I really drink...ouch) by Sunday evening, I was spent spent spent. Lord B's plea for me to "take it easy next week" was genuine - and a requirement. 

Fab matching tees courtesy of Essex Mama

Fab matching tees courtesy of Essex Mama

So, HEY new week! Lady B is sat in her garden in the heatwave, in a bikini, (well, actually my shorts and my bra because god knows where my bikini is and who cares; my bra is neon blue so not only on brand but looks a little like it could be a bikini - tmi?) catching up on emails and admin. I've cancelled plans so I can take stock and, as my osteopath reminded me yesterday as he stuck pins in me; "you really need to take time to step back and smell those roses, Becky. Please." 

This came after I'd told him about Bridget from Vistaprint who I'd met at the Small Business Saturday Launch the previous crazy week. Vistaprint are one of the biggest supporters of Small Business Saturday in the UK and given that this is my second year as champion, I've met most of the team before. But I hadn't met Bridget. She came over to my stand - which was a marked improvement on last years array and I like to think, showcased what Lady B does really well these days - and wanted to know THE story; not just the couple of liners I tend to roll out as general spiel but the whole kit and caboodle. So, I went for it; talked about how I started Lady B, what fired the passion, why I "bothered" (someone has actually asked me that before) and how I managed the whole mama-businesswoman-life thing. At the end of my round up, which wasn't long but a clear insight into my life, she properly grinned, took my hand and said "you are really something" (I paraphrase but you get me). I sniggered a "really?!" in reply. Bridget nodded. My response? "Why is it that I need a total stranger to tell me that? My husband can say it, my Mama can, my mates can even, but I don't really believe it. You however, you who I met only ten minutes ago, you make me believe it." She reached over and gave me a hug and I was all a fuzzy feel of emotions. We took a selfie, she gave me her number and told me anytime I needed to be told I was doing a stand-up job, to give her a call. (If I had an emoji, I'd add the heart with the stars here.) She didn't NEED to say that to me, she didn't NEED to make me feel good about what I may or may not have achieved. But the fact she did, the fact she decided to let me know, well, that was something. The ace thing about Small Business Saturday is once in a while, you're in a room of people that are not only doing what you're doing, day in day out, and so totally get it before you've even started talking, but you also meet the biggies, the people that have already made it, and they too get it, they get what you're grafting for and they, along with those other small businesses, give you that little pat on the back that you didn't know you needed. 

Yes, I have been a bit busier than normal, and yes, I have been staying up late be it working or clicking glasses, but somedays, some weeks, it feels like the right thing to do. Lady B is constantly reminded at the moment about how short the days are, how every little achievement should be celebrated, and how taking anything for granted is beyond foolish. So, I may burn out, I may be grouchy come Sunday evening from the fully packed schedule, and I may cry in the car sometimes because I know damn well I forgot to pack knickers and somehow, that is what has sent me over the edge (jesus, we really DO need to sleep!) but it's all just how it should be, right? I don't know whether you believe in the universe having a plan for you, and some days I do and other days I really don't and I hate the universe, but right now, I am - as Lady Two Birds constantly reminds me - trusting the universe. 

Lady B is going to take some time to smell those roses, and go so far as to take some time out at the beginning of August for plenty of Prosecco - nay - Champagne drinking, and a little escapism with Lady Irish Peanut. I'm going to enjoy the biscuit making, the Mini B garble and gradual words that are coming, and soak up the glorious everyday. What do they say? Appreciate the every day for they may be the special moments? Or something. THAT. Let's all remember that.  

Be good and bake well, 

Lady Bakewell-Park