This was the week I decided to slow things down. Not in a 'That would be nice' kind of way, but in a 'This is entirely necessary' realisation.
I haven't slept for ages. I fall asleep easily enough but a few hours later I'm wide awake again, mind (and heart) racing. By the time I get up the following day I'm completely exhausted. Family commitments, house renovations, starting a business, running a home, grieving, taking care of the little one... It's a lot. And for some reason I just keep taking on more and more. Saying 'No' a bit more would be a good thing.
The printers let me down spectacularly on Thursday. After much to-ing and fro-ing, my prints came back and the quality was really very poor. Nothing like the samples I'd received previously. They tried suggesting the quality would always have been compromised and it was 'a risk you take'. Quite the opposite to all the promises they made initially.
I have learned a very important lesson: never pay up front. My customer has asked that I get the prints to him, framed and ready to display, within two weeks. The printers have my original watercolours. They're either going to produce the quality I paid for or give me a refund. I'm feeling the pressure.
So this weekend we've tried to take things a little easier. Walking, eating, relaxing. Jay felt so bad about the printing debacle that he sneaked off and bought me the new Nigel Slater book to cheer me up.
We had pancakes yesterday, and prosecco (me) and some fancy beer (him) last night. I watched a truly dreadful - as in a so bad it was almost good - film.
Yesterday was bitterly cold. There was a weather warning because of all the fog, and this morning was foggy too. We went for a walk around the reservoir. It's somewhere I don't go that often but it was very quiet; the landscape there is quite desolate (even more so now they've been managing the woodland by felling lots of trees). It was all faded heather and pine stumps and crows circling ahead.
I made rice pudding when we got home. It's a Paul Hollywood recipe. Not that I'm a fan particularly, but it was the first one I found which didn't require double cream (we don't have any). The smell coming from the oven is lovely. Milk and sugar and nutmeg.
Joe's discovered Himalayan balsam. Or at least, the joys to be had from their exploding seed pods. They're now part of his to-see list each time we're out, along with ducks and steam trains and water.
So a re-evaluation and an attempt to slow things down a bit. It's probably a good time to do it, just before we hibernate for the winter. Good food, good books ('Housekeeping' is turning out to be a page-turner), family, friends, keeping warm... I just need to keep reminding myself of the important stuff.