Well Hello, how have you been? Goodness, I’ve missed you! For a mixture of reasons I haven’t written here for the last three months and it has felt very strange. I could just leap back in with a new recipe, a sailing update or a seasonal craft but first I’m going to indulge in a little recap of the last few months and an explanation for my absence from my little home on the internet.

First and foremost I haven’t actually been capable of sitting at my keyboard for any length of time. I am entering my seventh month with a frozen shoulder. Apparently it could take up to two years to recover full movement in the stupid thing but I am finally beginning to feel that it is going in the right direction, the pain has subsided and I can now hang the washing on the line even if I can’t do my own bra up! The consensus of opinion seems to be that it was caused by my sitting position when I am working so, for the last few months, I have had to focus my time on my freelance work rather than on my blog. Meh.

Secondly I have just marked my half year vegan anniversary. Thinly Spread has always had a strong vegetarian foodie focus, I’ve been veggie for 30 years, Mr TS for even longer and our four children for all their lives and I’ve really enjoyed sharing our recipes with you over the last seven years. While I’ve been away from blogging I have been mulling over what to do with Thinly Spread now that I no longer consume dairy, eggs or honey. Do I remove all my historic recipes? Do I veganise them and represent them to you? Do I carry on creating both vegetarian and vegan recipes since I am still cooking some vegetarian meals for the majority of my family (our eldest is also vegan but everyone else is still vegetarian)? As another week rolled by and I still hadn’t written up a recipe (and I have created LOADS) I realised that I am over thinking this and that the best thing is to just dive back in, leave the historic recipes as they are and just start sharing my vegan journey as it evolves! After all, those old recipes were my stepping stones to this point and they are a bloomin’ good way to start if you are meat reducing, newly vegetarian or taking your first steps on this delicious path!

Thirdly, I needed some time to think. The commercialisation of blogging in the last few years and the pressure to promote blog posts constantly via social media, to produce Instagram worthy plates, to keep up to date with the latest algorithms, to second guess huge organisations who exist and grow off the creativity of really excellent content producers, all the while producing more hoops for us to jump through, was wearing me down. I was bored. I realised I had pigeon holed myself on line in a way I would never do in real life. To maintain a ‘high enough’ profile in the blogging charts I had stopped sharing anything which didn’t fit my ‘niche’. Sailing was making a rare appearance, craft had all but vanished and family stuff was consigned to my back catalogue. I missed it.

So – what can you expect if you pop over here for a read with your morning coffee as we meander towards Christmas and on into 2018?

I will be sharing my vegan adventures as I adapt some of our old family favourites and create a whole raft of new ones.

Vegan Carrot and Coriander Fritters - a simple lunch! These fritters can be eaten hot or cold so they make a fabulous addition to a packed lunch or picnic hamper.

I will be introducing you to the new boaty love in my life.

sailing from Mylor Harbour, Falmouth, England

Bringing you up to date with the latest family developments (this was taken on my 50th birthday in August!)

sailing family life

and I will go back to sharing the things I like doing to pass my time. I don’t much care if the Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube algorithms like what I’m up to, I do care if my lovely, faithful readers like it.

This is me, a month ago, in my happy place. I’ve pressed reset on myself too – turning 50 seemed a good time to chop off all that hair (plus I couldn’t put it up on my own with this bloomin’ shoulder!)

Turning 50, sailing my new boat :)

I’m pressing reset and I hope that you will come along with me. I hope you will celebrate the seasons with me, not only through food but through crafts, travel, home, sailing and family life – all the things which make me tick, all the things which brought me blogging joy when I first started out.

I’d love to know what you would like to see here, what would make you keep coming back for more?

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