If you follow me on Twitter and Instagram, you will already have experienced my excitement surrounding my first published article. For those who don’t, you will get to experience it right here, right now!
Apart from wanting to be a pop star, the one thing I always wanted to be when I grew up was a writer. I’ve always had a creative streak (although it is probably a little more than a streak!) and used to write short stories, poems and even songs! As I’ve got older, I’ve blogged and started many-a-novel, but despite trying to get an agent and trying to get published, I never have. It got to a point where I thought that dream would never come true. It wouldn’t have stopped me writing, as it is something I am so often just compelled to do, but of course, one always wants a level of validation when it comes to something we feel we are good at or are incredibly passionate about.
When I started Pin Up Pantry, I never thought about how it would change my life in the ways it has. I wanted to bake delicious gluten free cakes for everyone. I wanted to share the knowledge I had accumulated through my gluten free journey and I wanted to ensure that EVERYONE could share the same cake whether gluten free or not. I didn’t think I would get the chance to become a demonstrator at food festivals, nor did I think I would get to realise my dream of being a published writer, but this is exactly what has happened.
I’ve been an avid reader of Vintage Life magazine for many years and in the back of my head I always wanted to be a contributor, but I never thought I would have anything of any merit to share with them or their readers. I had the idea of creating vintage recipes using different types of gluten free flour in order to educate people on what there is out there and how these flours can be used in dfifferent ways. I contacted Vintage Life on the off chance this was something they would be interested in and it was. My first article was published on 31st August in issue 82.
It was both a joy and a mildly terrifying experience putting the article together, especially for a publication as close to my heart as Vintage Life is.
I have been lucky enough to be commissioned to write a few more articles for them, the next should be in issue 83 then another in issue 85. With any luck there should be a few more to come.
I want to thank Vintage Life from the bottom of my heart for taking a chance on me and for allowing me to have creative freedom over my article. It is an honour and a privilege to be part of such a wonderful publication and I hope it's a relationship that continues on.
Stay Hep, Cats!
I can only apologise for not having written much recently, but things have been manic!
I’ve managed to catch my breath for all of two minutes and have started feeling rather melancholy over the fact that the Foodies Festival season is over. Not only are they the most amazing fun (although incredibly hard work) but they are an opportunity to meet new people, learn new things, and hang out with your mates.
I started thinking this morning how much my life has changed in such a short space of time. If I think about it too much I start feeling overwhelmed and my anxiety kicks in, but if I step back and look at it without any sort of agenda, I can’t believe how much I have achieved.
I set up my business earlier this year. Having baked for a lot of my life, gluten free baking came much later and as we learn more about gluten free flours etc., the more I am learning about baking with them. I’ve had some brilliant commissions from people and have more in the pipeline, have repeat customers and have been given the opportunity to demonstrate and write about what I love. It’s frustrating not being able to eat ‘normally’ and cake is something that everybody should be able to enjoy and that was why I wanted to create The Pin Up Pantry.
I have to thank Charlotte White - (restorationcake.com) who is truly one of my best friends - for taking a chance on basically a rank amateur when it came to demonstrating. Despite being a seasoned performer, baking live on stage is quite unusual and certainly not something I ever thought I would get the opportunity to do.
If you’ve never been to a Foodies Festival, you must take the time to visit next year when the season starts again. For what is essentially a very small fee, you get to watch some of your favourite chefs and bakers up close and personal, creating delicious dishes in front of your very eyes (which you can sample in the cakes and desserts theatre). There is live music, a drinks theatre where you can learn all about beer and wine, a healthy living area, a kids theatre and an inordinate amount of food and drink stalls where you can try and buy to your hearts content (or until your wallet starts sweating).
I've been so lucky to meet some amazing people through being a part of Foodies Festival, including Candice Brown, Saira Hamilton, Michael Bremner, Adam Simmonds, John Holland, Suzy Pelta, Katy Beskow, Juanita Hennessey, Mark Tilling, Brodie Williams, Lorna Robertson and so many more. Many of whom I can now consider friends. I've learned so much and hopefully I will be invited back next year, but if not, I will always look back on this year fondly and know I did myself proud.
Thanks again to Charlotte and Foodies Festival for taking a chance on me - I hope I did you guys proud too!
Photo credits go to Helen from Leewood Roots
Stay Hep, Cats