Reflective musings on 2019 here at PumpjackPiddlewick

I have said it before and I will say it again, I love celebrating a New Year. Not because of the whole Champagne party thing, but simply as a rejuvenation in ideas, energy, plans and reflective musings.

A Change is as Good as a Rest

The days are already starting to get longer. (I can tell because the ducks are complaining I am not letting them out early enough and are definitely saying they now get to stay up a little later). New plans are already in motion for our restoration garden and home, as well as our businesses.

So much changed in 2019. Since we bought our new home some of our focuses, time and energy have been put in to other things than originally planned in 2018. Yes, being us, we have gone off piste. A little. Okay, maybe a little more than a little.

Sipping from Creativity

Pumpjack, on the quiet, began writing a book this time last year. He was doing this whilst working at a fantastic winery, Hubert Lamy, in the Chassagne-Montrachet area here in Bourgogne. As the book gained momentum, and he found his time taken up more and more by it, he became stupidly stretched. By February, a gaunt looking Mr P. was getting up at 1am to write until 6am when he then headed to the vineyards to prune. Home by 6pm, exhausted, he would fall into bed as soon as he had eaten something. Obviously not sustainable.

The decision was made that he would write full time and give up his work at the winery. Wine as a business was put on hold until the book was finished. It’s so close now we can almost taste it. [Side note – the book is not about wine. Think ‘Yes Minister’ meets non-fiction thriller. And that’s as much as I am going to tell you. For now.]

And speaking of writing, I too found ‘my voice’, or so I have been told. Having always wanted to write but never really knowing what, this past year I found my niche. It’s true what they say, that once you find your passion(s) it becomes easy to simply do. This woke me up to looking at what I was not enjoying. The past year has been a culling of those things and life feels all the lighter for it.

Reflective Musings

New this year are the Vignettes. My little musings. They started off as little moments in time to share with other Etsy Shop owners and kept growing. And they cemented my thoughts on slow living. Some may call it mindful living.

It was one of those epiphany moments where you realise you are truly happy. And then, as I am a curious soul, I set about determining ‘why?’. It was the recognition that life taken back to its very basics, not filled with trappings, but rather filled with special moments of laughter and love allows you to discover what’s truly important.

Don’t get me wrong, this has been a very hard year. We have discovered dreams don’t come cheap and it takes a very real strength to pursue them. With only one, fluctuating income and many, many mouths to feed, inventiveness has become a way of life for us in our restoration home, garden and especially kitchen. And in consequence, with need comes learning, experimenting, anger and the wonder of true happiness.

Embracing the concept of slow or mindful living for me has been about taking time to think, or muse. Our restoration work has slowed due to our other commitments, but it gets our attention at least one hour a day, every day. And, little by little we are seeing progress. A garden border here, a stone wall there, a new door latch made from a spanner, wall paper stripped in odd places. And always lots of planning. And dreaming.

In with the New

Yes, I truly adore the change to a new year. My reflective musings bring me new focus. It gives me a moment to prioritise and makes me really excited to begin new ventures. Speaking of which, I am finalising my latest. I am opening a new shop this month! ~ ‘Taking Time Too’ ~ how very apropos, don’t you think?

It will offer vintage printables, and my own designed artwork. (I told you we were getting more creative.) I’ll be showcasing my work and inventory on Instagram if you wish to take a look, follow the journey and be kept up to date.

A big heartfelt Thank You to all our readers, surfers and even those google spiders. We hope you will continue to join us in our Little Moments and Fab Findings from France. And, we truly hope 2020 brings you your own happiness, whatever form it may take.

From all of us here at Pumpjack & Piddlewick, we wish you a wonderful New Year!

New Year reflective musings from PumpjackPiddlewick

Addendum: Of Wattling and Horse Milk

Each new year I like to review what has been popular here at the Pumpjack & Piddlewick Blog. It’s both good business as well as fun to see and reflect. (And to realise that the eclectic mix speaks volumes.)

1. Whatever’s Wattling?

2. What makes a French Silk Scarf so Special?

3. Horse Milk – Have you Tried It?

4. How to Vertical Garden Planting using old Milk Bottles

5. Making a Vertical Garden Recycling the Previous Year

6. Why Vintage Eyeglasses?

7. Findings about French Shutters

8. How to Make a Duck Enclosure

9. Making Junk Journal Cards

10. 10 Reasons We Like French Life


Here’s a tiny taste of what you will find in our Shops:

Simply click on the image to see more.


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