The school summer holidays are nearly upon us, schools all around the country are putting the tops back on their felt tips, sending out reports, taking this years work back off the walls and sorting out the rotten fruit that got tucked away in the desks of students last September never to be rediscovered until now!
I've always counted down to the school summer holidays, maybe because I'm a mummy I also see it as my end of term, in my business it seems like a natural time to take stock and digest the year so far, summer is our time for no schedules or bedtimes, it's the time of adventures and long days of fun with me working on the hop at every opportunity, cafes and benches become my places to check on emails and write quick replies whilst waiting for my daughters to come out of shops or finish doing activities, i'm lucky that increasingly I have a business I can operate from mostly anywhere. If I have photo shoots we organise our days around them trying to fit in as much fun as possible, it's great to take the kids along and Holly too, I love the way my business works now. I have 3 weddings during August to shoot and that is a pace of wedding photography I can enjoy, gone are the days of 30 in a season, I'll leave that to the young keen things, I like 10 gloriously laid back affairs in beautiful places telling stories of great love.
Of course there's much to celebrate about summer holidays and summer in general and your opinions of course may vary but here's a few reasons I adore the summer holidays.
1. No Alarms Buzzing! I hate the alarm clock with a passion, I have a great one by Resmed now which monitors my sleep and wakes me up in a half hour window and I still go back to sleep if it goes off more than 5 minutes earlier than I wanted to get up. I'm just not an alarm type person, I like waking up naturally and thankfully I have a job that allows me to do that, it's the reason I don't start work until 10am, I just hate mornings.
2. Sunglasses, ok so I have the most annoyingly light sensitive eyes you can imagine which means I wear sunglasses in all weathers and all seasons but in summer that means every day and sometimes even in the rain. You might know, if you know me in real life that I have a large collection of sunglasses, I have some Anna Sui white ones I adore and some purple Marc Jacobs ones which Looby seems to have purloined and not returned but at the moment I am loving my Dewerstone sunglasses which were kindly sent to me, carved from walnut and oak but surprisingly light as a feather, you'll get no sunglasses headache from these wonders! I got sent the Ortons which have Carl Zeiss lenses, as soon as I saw them I loved them and the great thing about Dewerstone is that it's a British outdoor lifestyle company based in Dartmoor, in fact the name comes from the the Dewerstone woods. Seriously the sunglasses are like art, the make, the design,the attention to detail, everything about them oozes style. They don't just do sunglasses though, they do outdoor clothing, they have some Sunrise leggings I have my eyes on for running in. I love British companies, especially small ones, and this brand is run by an office of 6 people, if you support them you are supporting real actual people instead of a faceless corporation, as an entrepreneur I'm so happy to spread the word about them.
3. Outdoor Living, many who know me will know how much I love being in the great outdoors, I love nothing better than a big stomp through beautiful countryside or a run through pretty woodlands and with Holly Bobbins at my side there's no shortage of places we can go but it's not just walking and being out in the fresh air, it's BBQ's in the garden, and picnics in the park, working on the beach from a deck chair, I don't care as long as I don't have to be indoors.
4. Mini Breaks and Holidays, this summer I have a couple of adventures already planned, at the beginning of August Looby and I are going to Perth for 2 nights, we fell in love with Perth when we visited a couple of years ago, Looby especially loves that they have trampolines in the park, it's such a quaint petite little city, we'll get there quite early so the next day we're going to jump on the train to Inverness, somewhere I fell in love with but Looby hasn't been to so I'm looking forward to showing her around the totie wee city. towards the middle of August Abigail and I are going to Stratford upon Avon for 2 nights, somewhere I have never been, it was her choice of destination and we are so excited to visit the home of William Shakespeare and have 2 days of soaking up as much culture as possible. I also want to plan a visit to Edinburgh during the fringe festival, I love the busy bustle of Edinburgh all year around but during the Fringe Edinburgh comes alive, it's the noisiest most vibrant city, especially around the royal mile and on every corner there's some kind of free show or performance art, the only peril is the price of accommodation.
5. Day Trips, I love a great picnic, I've already mentioned that and I love the mere mention of a road trip or adventure with either friends or just me and Holly Bobbins, there are plenty of public transport adventures to be had in the North as I mentioned previously, one of which I must do, a day trip to Seahouses on the bus from Newcastle is a must! I have a picnic hamper backpack which is perfect for the occasion of spontaneous picnicking adventures. I'm a member of both the National Trust and English Heritage so there's at least a thousand free days out right there, I want to fill these precious six weeks with as much adventure as possible, you only live once after all.
So whatever you choose to do this summer holidays and whether it rains (inevitable, August is statistically the wettest month of the year) or we have 6 weeks of wall to wall scorching sunshine (I'm ever hopeful) I hope you'll take a moment to relax and enjoy life, if you're a working parent I know it's tougher and if you are self employed like me I hope you'll embrace the chance to pack up your work kit and work from wherever you can, let the kids play on the beach whilst you hire a deckchair and get your head around some tasks, I love the fact that thanks to an iPhone I can pretty much keep hold of all of my business affairs wherever I am, I think it gets even better if you have as much as you can stored in the cloud! Take time to enjoy it though for one day the kids will be grown up and the summer holidays will just be summer without the excuse to take it easier. If you are planning on booking me for your portraits I will be available as long as you're booking in advance, I often get lots of Australian families coming over during summer and having portraits with their north east families, I love it, it's my favourite thing to do so if yours are in town and you need a photographer in Newcastle then please email me!