This Week I Have Been Mostly…

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1. Running (ahem… jogging) a 10km race.

Last year, Big Sis and I started, and indeed finished, the Couch to 5k. Since then, I have told approximately every single person I’ve met to do it, several times, because it’s brilliant. Not only do you start off with just one minute of jogging at a time, but, Laura, the podcast coach, keeps telling you to slow down! It feels like an insane miracle, when you suddenly jump from a few minutes of jogging to longer 15 minute and 20 minute stretches. At the beginning, the very idea of being able to that seems inconceivable, but somehow you manage it. I did the Colour Run in London last summer, which involves running 5 km whilst students with plastic bottles attempt to blast you with enough coloured powder so that you’re still sporting a purple moustache and blue fingernails three days later.

Thus I discovered, threat of public humiliation, in the form of being unable to complete a race or being last (I have no judgement on those who are – my brain just has issues with not being very good at things I attempt), is my best motivator, so I booked a 10k run, to make sure I left the house and ran. And so I did…not always successfully. Last Sunday, I tried the full 10k distance for the first time and fell on my face before I’d run a single kilometre. It made me so cross I had to walk for a few minutes to calm down. For the rest of the 10km I got exceedingly lost, and spent most of it running up and down a single road somewhere in Kennington with Google Maps shouting at me to turn left, turn right, turn left… My favourite bit was ending up jogging very slowly behind another jogger, and preventing myself laughing out loud at the insanity of this incredibly slow chase scene, reminded of this.

The official 10k run went OK. I survived, jogged all the way and wasn’t last. I did arrive a couple of minutes late, as in I arrived a few hundred metres from the start to see everyone set off. At a big race, it would take a couple of minutes for everyone to get through the start line, but this was a lot smaller, so I rather humiliatingly had to not only begin by myself, but start off running like the clappers, as I had sod all idea where to go, and needed to try and find the tail end of the runners to follow. I couldn’t see anyone for a scary minute, but thank goodness for marshals and their florescent jackets. I found the race, but I do not recommend the strategy. I normally start so slow I spend the first few km telling my brain, ‘It’s just a nice walk’, with little on my pace to mark the difference, so my speedy start was rather a shock to the system. But I did it. It was good. And if you haven’t, do the Couch to 5k.

Pop Art

2. Being Inspired for a Wedding that doesn’t exist!

I’ve been organising my Pinterest Boards over the last couple of weeks – do have a look if you fancy. Since then, I’ve started a Pop Art Wedding Inspiration Board, having worked on a bespoke wedding stationery design that I loved working on. I’m getting a little obsessed. From the polka dot cake, to the drawn/cartoon style nail varnish, brightly coloured flowers and big print illustrations of couples, I’m getting rather over inspired for an event that doesn’t exist. But then, that’s what’s Pinterest does.


3. Looking into lots of Artists Studios and houses.

On Sunday, we again walked around areas of London we’ve never visited before. This time, it was exploring Dulwich Festival Artists’ Open House. There are over 160 different places and properties taking part and marked on the map. There are permanent studios, and houses of residents that are given over to artists to show their work. I love studios; the smell of the paper, the drawers of paints and inks and art equipment, the kettles in the corner, and painty finger printed mugs, the kilns and sketch papers and piles of bits of pieces. I feel at home in them.

Even if you don’t feel at home in then yourself, I really recommend going to see`Open Studios. It’s pretty amazing to think that in a small section of a large city, there are so many people working away, drawing, making, sculpting. It gives me so much hope and happiness for the number of things being printed, made and drawn every day. It’s also a good cheeky way to look into other peoples’ houses – and amazing and creative houses at that. If you’re in London and tempted, there is a second open house weekend, this weekend, 17-18th May. Click on the link above and it lists the open studios, with maps.

Design One - fewer stars

4. Thinking of First Anniversary Presents

Again, somewhat inspired by Pinterest, I’ve been looking at some paper presents. I love paper, always have. I love different textures, different styles, old bits of scrap paper and freshly printed, so I was having a jolly old time collating paper presents for first wedding anniversaries. Have a look here to see what you think of the ideas I put together. Other suggestions have included gig tickets, but any kind of ticket would be…just the ticket (yep, I did just do that). Planes, trains, theatres or music.