The twists and turns of life have led us to own a little piece of ordinary heaven in Lower Normandy, France. It's ordinary because the house itself is not picturesque or luxurious. The land and the barns had deep layers of rubbish under the very human process that is neglect. It's heaven because it is. The skies are full of stars at night, and birds during the day. The undergrowth is full of snakes, toads, dormice, foxes, deer, badgers.
This is the only property my husband or I will ever own, we both come from renting families, and that sense of ownership is a precious and fragile thing. While we dream of relocating there permanently, we've chosen to leave our children in their schools, so every holiday we make the dash over the channel, (actually under because I don't do boats) to renew our fight with the bramble.
Disappearing from my workshop as a one-woman business, and out of internet range, (it stops half-way through the hamlet) continually bothers me. It's still a relatively new situation, my Gemma Textiles business was born around the same time as we bought the land, and I think it's important to me to allow the truth of my life circumstances their space, and make the business work within that.
The contradiction of developing a business model that pivots on an 'open all hours' webshop that closes up to six times a year is something I will be exploring in the coming years. There are many things about life in the 21st Century that are totally amazing and life-enhancing, instant messaging, phone-cameras, BBC's 6 music, solar panels (need some of those), but I still think it's very common for square peg people to get pushed into round holes. That's not right or healthy.
I hope you, square or round peg, enjoy watching this haphazard journey through the growth of my Gemma Textiles business. Sign up to receive my newsletter so you can hear about all the other steps along the way.