Monday, 8 February 2016

Being an artist and how to suvive on a small budget

Hope you are having a wonderful Monday, its been a slow start today after much furniture moving and arguing teenagers yesterday, I have started reading overcoming under earning book and it's really eye opening stuff, I would recommend you get it if you have 'money baggage' from childhood or have self doubting beliefs. Walking dogs, post office run, sewing sofa throws and making art is on my list for today, lets hope the rain stays away and the lovely sunshine comes out to play

Overcoming Underearning: A Five-Step Plan to a Richer Life

Catch up on last week

Last week it was lovely to have friends over and not be squashed, I pinch myself each day and am so grateful we have a bigger kitchen and dining room now that can easily accommodate guests. We have carried on doing jobs in the new house, yesterday was curtain making and putting furniture together, if I think about everything that needs doing, it gets overwhelming so trying to take each day as it comes.

I also did a new piece of art which has astounded me, it was inspired by my friend Laura's gorgeous photo of her with an elephant in Thailand (at a rescue sanctuary). Each piece of art I do I fall a little more in love.

I also learnt something new last week, which to a lot of you will seem like nothing, but it's been a big step for me, forgive me that I am so behind the times haha, but I went to the art shop and had a lovely chat with the man there about printing straight from canvas and mixed media paintings. He showed me what can be done, and wow! I was impressed, the printing machines they have are awesome, so I can now offer these as prints, brilliant quality, just like the real thing. If you are interested get in touch.

That means I can share so much more of my work without having to part with the original each time.

The teens have been getting on each others nerves a lot, they have had a week off college and have cabin fever, I try to remember what I was like with my sister as a teen, but only remember being wonderful haha. I am sure if my mum was alive she would tell a different story.

Money wobbles and 9p burgers

We have also been having a wobble around money (hence reading that ^ book), being self employed is sometimes hard, especially when you move into a bigger home (yeah I'm daft I didn't think bigger home = bigger bills) I posted an update about what I was doing on fb and a lady commented she wished she had my life, I smiled to myself because as I typed that update I was sat in gloves, freezing my ass off because we couldn't afford to put the heating on. Don't get me wrong, I am very blessed and love that I have the freedom to choose how to spend my time, but until I make it into the big time, there is a pay off. I think things like money and sex are not really talked about enough, it's OK
 to talk about these things, it's actually good because then you can connect with others who also may feel they can't speak of it.

I was actually worried, if I told the truth about the behind the scenes (freezing etc) of Dotty Delightful, somehow it would ruin my image and then people wouldn't want to buy my art because I have shattered the dream of who they think I am, but I feel I want to share the truth of my life because a lot of people are going through the same things. I read earlier in the week a cook book I borrowed from the library by Jack Monroe, I got it because I had heard about her before and her budget ( I mean real budget, not Jamie Olivers £22 leg of lamb budget) recipes, it's a great book, I carried on then reading her blog ( I tend to obsess and read everything when I find something good), that led me to other blogs about this grey area of people who are not on their arses completely, like homeless people or the daily mails image of someone of benefits, they have jobs, they are doing something passionately and working a lot but still struggling to pay the electric bill, or have dropped down from their normal luxury range of food to the basics range, it was pretty eye opening really.

Find the cook book here:
A Girl Called Jack: 100 delicious budget recipes

We tried the 9p - yes you read it right, 9p veggie burgers, I added some chilli flakes to mine and we loved them, although the younger one wouldn't even try them because they had kidney beans in! Always been a fussy eater - in fact a fussy everything haha.

A little tip which I have taken for granted before, is to bulk cook to save gas and time and I put the washing machine on an eco wash for the first time ever, apparently that saves water.

Asda have come up with a good idea to trail, unfortunately they are not available in the top 3 poorest places in UK, including my very own town Blackpool. The exclusive wonky veg boxes are packed with peculiar potatoes, crooked carrots and curved cucumbers which are all in season, as well as knobbly peppers, cabbages, onions, leeks and parsnips. They’re just £3.50 each.

I think it's a good idea to tackle the waste caused by the supermarkets being too picky and guessing that customers want perfect veg all the time, it will help farmers too, did you see Hugh's war on waste programme, that was heartbreaking for the farmers. I actually went to the veg stall in the market (it's just round the corner now) I haven't been in there for years, I was so surprised how cheap it was compared to Sainsburys where I normally shop. Of course it isn't organic and I wouldn't buy the garlic as it was from China but the occasional veg that's not part of the dirty dozen has saved me money. Plus I realised (der me) that I am supporting a small family business.

I could waffle on all day about this kind of thing, but I have art to create and the sun has come out so I am off to the post office to post a print before the rain comes back.

Love Dotty xx

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