The summer holidays started in the best way for my little family and me. As you grow up and older, knowing what makes you happy is so important, as is keeping things simple and smiling as often as you can. I don’t mean the kind of smile that is meant for anyone else’s benefit. I mean the smile that grows on your face because you are smiling from within. And I don’t mean the happiness that you are told to feel, I mean the kind of happiness that comes from knowing yourself, knowing what you like and endeavouring to always have it. When we bundled in to the car with our battered, outdoorsy clothes and very minimal other things for a few days away, I couldn’t wait to get on the road and make our way to our happy place. The place with the white cliffs that overlook the sea.…

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The hustle and bustle of London is less than an hour away from my sleepy home town. London is everything that Faversham isn’t. It is a place for the dreamers, the hopefuls and it is rife with opportunity…yet, there is a hint of failure that hangs in the air, a little desperation, a lonely sadness. Faversham is a quiet place! People don’t come here to make their dreams come true…but it isn’t lonely. I’ve spent time in London, before I became a mama…and not the touristy kind! Not like on this day when I came with my family. I’ve been present in a few scenes and London always makes me feel the same way about it. Like it’s the best place that I have ever been to… artistic, electric, historically superior and proud. It is somewhere that leaves me in awe and makes me feel excited in the pit of…

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My family and I must be mad. We must be! There is absolutely no other explanation for us all bundling into our cars, packed with sleeping bags, thermals and the warmest of winter woolies… to go glamping… at the end of November. We could have been warm. We could have been dry. Our hair could have been clean for goodness sakes. Instead, we dragged ourselves in to our cars to drive in to the middle of nowhere, to ‘live’ for a couple of days. We didn’t have any form of technology or any fancy appliances. Instead we had fresh air, long walks, basic cooking and swampy grounds around a campfire that was under siege from heavy rain. We were under siege from rain and wind…constantly! The strange thing is, I say we dragged ourselves in to our cars…we didn’t! We jumped in gladly, practically shouting ‘wahoooooo’ as we set off.…

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Faversham Hop Festival is so special to me. I have grown up with it. It is a strong link to my childhood and many happy memories. Some of my earliest memories actually. I have a photograph of a young, blonde girl standing in the crowds of people singing, morris dancers jigging, stalls of wonder and joy. The girl was nervous to the core because she was holding a baby owl… that girl was me! I remember feeling so worried at the time, that it might not like me… it may fly away…scratch me even! I felt unnerved about many things back then- weary, unsure…shy! Thankfully the owl didn’t do any of those things, it was actually lovely. I remember treasuring that photograph for such a long time after that day, like it was a huge achievement, a reminder that I could be brave… And honestly, I have loved woodland creatures…

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And… We survived another night… our final night to be exact! And when we opened our eyes that morning, it was really sunny… frustratingly so! But, a lot can be said for some sunshine on such little time. I woke up first and again looked upon my sleeping cherubs. They are so peaceful when they’re sleeping and so very beautiful…well, always really! Not long after we woke up, all kinds of chaos was going on. With an exit time of 10am (otherwise known as ‘Early O’Clock’), we got ourselves ready and started throwing things in to the back of the car. Once again the beast was rammed of way too many things, although I have to say…not everything made it back home. R.I.P to our gazebo and tents. As much as they homed us in the storms and did an okay job (not the gazebo, that was totally rubbish)…they were…

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