Letting Go…

Some of you may have noticed my absence on these pages for the last 5 days. It doesn’t sound long and in fact it’s only three blogging days I have missed but that’s pretty unusual for me. Other than public holidays, I’ve not taken a day off from FF even when I’ve been on holiday in the almost 2 years since I started.

Image via RocketRicTic

This weekend was a big one for me – it was my best friends Hen Do. Charged with much of the organising I wanted to make it fabulous – not least because my hen do remains one of the best weekends I have ever had. When else do you get to have a weekend that is all about you, doing your favourite things, with your favourite people? I’ve said before here that I’m not particularly orgainsed and I’m not sure that’s entirely accurate, it’s more that I try to squeeze too much into too little time. As a consequence there was no way I was being under prepared and had been ordering the necessary things, making bits for the goody bags and planning the schedule for weeks – especially as I didn’t want to be frazzled either, but free to enjoy it. The piece de resistance was the Mr and Mrs game. Instead of arranging for Jess’s fiance Dan to answer the questions on paper, I filmed him answering the questions and edited it into a 20 minute video – about 8 hours work in all and on Tuesday night it was all ready to go. Pete and I have made a few other DVD’s of family occasions and I usually leave the burning to him, so on Tuesday night I left it in his hands and started burning hen mix CD’s, designing stickers for them and other things that needed completing.

And there begins a catalogue of disasters. First we found the software (iDVD) required to burn the DVD wasn’t on my MacBook (usually we do these on the iMac) as Apple are apparently phasing it out. We found some downloadable software online called Burn and tried that instead but by Wednesday night it was clear that wasn’t going to work out either. We tried transferring the project over to the iMac and in full disaster fashion, the footage corrupted and iMovie completely bit the dust, the Mr and Mrs video with it. In floods of tears at 12am on Wednesday night and with pre-made wedding related appointments made for Thursday I bit the bullet and decided to start again, editing the whole thing again from scratch. I got to bed at 3.30am, with about an hours work left to do. Although I was shattered, I managed to get to all the appointments, and finish the video and pack before I went out at 5pm to a make up trial with Jess for the wedding. I left the DVD again with Pete to burn to disc and still a little tense but happy I was almost there, Jess and I went to dinner, where we met Pete and Dan for a pre-hen night. As soon as Dan and Pete walked in I knew something was wrong. Cryptically asking if he had ‘done it’, their faces looked like they had something awful to break to me. Eventually as Jess was powdering her nose, they told me that the creaking, 4 year old iMac had run out of memory, which it had done earlier that day and I had moved some files around to resolve it. What I hadn’t realised is that in moving the video clips that iMovie needed to reference to write the DVD, I had once again corrupted the whole project. Cue complete melt down from me when I got home and Jess was safely out of the way. In all the chaos so far I still had outstanding (albeit small) tasks to do. There was no way I could do the whole thing again, get everything else done, then drive all the way to Bath the next day and function properly for the first night of the hen. In the end Pete saved the day and I finished all the hen stuff while he stayed up and long after I was in bed he woke me up brandishing the DVD. What can I say, he’s a keeper 🙂

I suppose this might all sound a bit dramatic and perhaps over the top in terms of what I did for the hen. I know that it shows just how important it was to me though and when you’re juggling a lot of balls, sometimes something has to give. This time it was the blog and in some ways that is an achievement for me. I’ve spent a lot of years blogging now and that has included a lot of late nights, tired days and times when my family of friends have come second. I know that in the last 2 years my perspective has hugely shifted and now they are top of the list rather than bottom. Just because the people you love will wait for you doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give them a bit more respect. And I respect myself enough to know that I deserve not to be tired after putting in so much effort and being so excited; That I sometimes need to let one of the balls drop and then not beat myself up about it.

One other good thing that has come out of it was the overwhelming amount of supportive tweets, facebook messages and emails I received and I want to say thank you to all of you who sent them. Although the blog isn’t a professional one, I do feel a massive sense of obligation. By having set the benchmark at 5 posts a week I feel I have to keep that up. I know how disappointed I am when my favourite bloggers take a day off for some reason. It’s easy if a post doesn’t receive many comments after I have stayed up late writing it the night before to feel that there’s no one out there who really cares, and that the effort I put in goes unnoticed, but it’s nice to know you do!

I guess I shared this not only to explain my absence but to remind all of us that sometimes letting go is the best thing you can do, not the failure we anticipate it to be.

Over the next week or two I’ll be sharing the hen DIY’s I made and some of the things we did. The weekend was epic, totally worth the tears and lack of sleep, and all the better for me stepping back and having one less thing to stress about. Thank you guys!


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27 thoughts on “Letting Go…

  1. Just good to know you’re ok! Don’t worry, FF is impressive enough without recognising that you actually have a full time job as well, and friends are far more important. Glad you got to have a relaxing time and don’t worry about us, we’re all still here!

  2. Oh Rebecca you are such a fabulous friend to have done all of that for the hen! There is absolutely no need to apologise (but welcome back, let’s get the ticker tape, open the bubbly , etc etc because we missed you!) x

  3. O wow Rebecca, this sounds like a complete nightmare! I hate it when technology lets you down!

    I have so much respect for how well you keep your blog, family life, and demanding job going day to day, that I think a little time off sometimes is good! And it can help to put things in perspective and make your blog even better (if that is possible with FF!!)

  4. Wow – you did so much work for the Hen – that sounds amazing.

    I think taking some time off to focus on your real life is wonderful and totally right sometimes – so glad you enjoyed it. x

  5. This is the problem with being a perfectionist – step back needed to avoid exploding every now and then! Well done for doing it, so glad the weekend was a roaring success. Hope you’ve had chance to recharge batteries afterwards too.


  6. Awww Rebecca welcome back! And don”t worry us FF readers aren”t going anywhere, we are here waiting for your next Blogg ;-))
    So glad all went well….eventually 😉 And Well done to Pete for coming to your rescue! What a lovely Gent!
    We are waiting for the pics and all the “Details” of the Hen do, and may I ask ……Were there any strippers? I for one will be waiting hehe
    Well done you xxxxx

  7. Welcome back Rebecca, so glad it finally worked out end I’m sure Jess was SO appreciative of all your hard work. She’s lucky to have a friend like you.

  8. Welcome back! I missed you! 🙂

    Sounds like a drama – but one that was worth it in the end!

    This situation sounds like it could literally have been lifted from my own life, so I love your reference to “he’s a keeper”… my boy is the same: He stands by on the sidelines shaking his head at the dramas I get myself in to and the meltdowns that happen as a consequence and then when the poop hits the fan, I know he’s there, despite having zero interest in the subject matter to help me out in my hour of need. To me, true love isn’t mushy, but is highly strategic and practical and helps out in an hour of last-minute need! Well done that man!!!!! Good work Pete, the FF readers salute you! 🙂

    This is why I love love love FF… everything you post up here is something I can completely identify with. Real life!!

    I’ve loved FF from the start and so like you say, I was sad when I couldn’t get my daily fix, but I think the fact that there’s a “real” life going on behind the scenes is what makes me love it so much. We all read those blogs where things look too good to be true or utterly unobtainable (well, at least without a millionaire backer to bank roll everything you post about) and to be honest I’d rather read your real-life blog and you have a few days or even weeks off here and there to chill/recover/do stuff for yourself/take time out, than read one where there’s a professional veneer over the top (not that FF is in anyway unprofessional, but you know what I mean)and no delineation between real life and blog life.

    Also – absence makes the heart grow fonder!

    Never forget that your blogging family is here for you if you ever need a hand/shoulder/ear… cyber or real!

  9. Cannot wait to read about the hen!!

    Do you know i posted that same quote on Instagram this week for a friend – its a good one! 🙂

    Dont worry about taking time out – sometimes we all need it and I agree with everyone else you do such a great job with your posting and content anyway that a few days do not matter and life just has to come first! I have been struggling with five posts a week since being pregnant and have dropeed down to less per week (and i’m sure i’ll need to when the baby is here too!)

    Rachie xo

  10. Welcome back! What a nightmare, but good that it all worked out in the end! Can’t wait to see pics!
    We all know what an insanely busy life you have, so don’t feel guilty about not posting for a while. We all understand. You need you time as well otherwise you’ll burn out. I’m glad you had an amazing time! 🙂
    Don’t worry about us, we’re not leaving. We’re just happy your ok!

  11. Well done you for being able to prioritise, and having the courage to let one thing go for a short while – and the confidence in the blog, in the strength of its content and in your readers to know that a posting hiatus is insignificant in the long run.

    Sounds like a great weekend. I hope you have naps scheduled for this week!

  12. The Hen looked AMAZING. Jess is a lucky lucky girl. As for the blog, I love it because its real and life is sometimes a bit shitty. And bless Pete.

    I think break’s are great and, like Victoria said, they make the heart grow fonder. I’d much rather read more quality, and less crap.

    And anyway, I went back and re-read all your Africa posts again as we were booking things. Just incase you were wondering why your views on your blogging number thing were up!

  13. Ditto what Victoria said really. Pleased you’re OK, pleased you had an amazing weekend and pleased you’re back.
    Love this blog, it amazes me how much you blog, and your honesty about the blog and your life is what makes the blog such a brilliant read.
    Can’t wait to hear about the hen do x

  14. Welcome back! It sounds like you had a fabulous weekend.

    We will cope if you’re not here every day 🙂 Maybe schedule in a few more breaks in the blog, give yourself some breathing time.

  15. Just read this and now feel entirely responsible for the whole thing, SHIT, so sorry if the missing disc I borrowed caused all this. 🙁

    I absolutely feel your pain and bounced from mini-drama to more drama just like this one throughout the end of last year / beginning of this year. It was one of my biggest reasons for stepping back from blogging, there simply were not enough hours to juggle a proper job, my events business and the blog alongside home life and actually having a life.

    I decided to just dip in and out of blogging when I had the time and felt the urge to write. But the more time I spent with my partner, friends and family the less inclined I felt to commit any of my precious spare time to blogging. Now I am kind of out of the loop with it all and I hate to admit it but I really miss it. The focus of POD blog now is about giving an insight into our wedding planning business, inspiring couples planning their wedding day and showing our capabilities as creatives, so the personal posts just don’t really fit anymore, and it’s these ones I really miss having an outlet for. I WANT to natter with people about fashion, holidays and decorating my home but those things don’t really have much of a place on a wedding blog.

    I know just how much you’ll have been kicking yourself, but one of the things I love about you and your approach to life is that you can always rationalise and find the positives in a situation instead of dwelling on the shit. I think this is why so many of us continue to read FF. It’s nice to hear your perspective, that you don’t have all the answers and will admit when things aren’t fitting that perfect picture. I think blogging really helps with this attitude, it forces you to analyse things quicker and just by writing your thoughts down, whether you hit the publish button or not can often help to solve a problem that’s been swimming round in your head. Having the interaction and support of the fab FF community on top of that is a real bonus. I know I feel like part of a community when I read your posts and everyone else’s perspective on the different issues you cover. I rarely comment, again time issues, but that doesn’t mean FF doesn’t have a major impact on me. It does. Yours was the only web page I logged onto throughout my 2-week holiday and I used to spend hours online, trawling so many blogs that have all failed to keep my interest.

    We all need a break and to be in charge of how we spend our time, you’re damn right to prioritise family & friends over blogging and I really hope you can find that happy balance so FF continues to thrive well into the future.

    M xx

    • Don’t feel bad Michelle – it turns out that even though I found the DVD I needed (It’s not the iWorks one you have/had) Apple have stopped people being able to install it on newer machines. Incredibly frustrating.

      I’m sure I don’t need to say this again but you’re always welcome here if you want an outlet for some of your thoughts…! x

  16. Ahhh, I feel awful that I was oblivious to your traumas – I was just (shallowly) admiring the picture of you in the floral crown and envying the bride whose hen do you were organising and tra la la-ing whilst you were having a meltdown – oh the guilt!

    I’m sure none of your readers want to be a burden and we’re just glad to hear from you when you do post – it doesn’t have to be like clockwork! I don’t always comment (sometimes I simply don’t have anything meaningful to add. Okay, often…!) and don’t get the chance to read every day but I always do read each post and enjoy it. Of course you should put your friends and family first, that’s absolutely right and proper.

    And again I say, lucky bride: that sounds an incredible hen do. If you ever get bored of the NHS, I’d say you’d make an amazing event organiser/party planner.

  17. Deja-vu!! I too have just arranged a hen do in Bath and also filmed my Mr & Mrs quiz. My iphone lead wouldn’t connect to the TV and I ended up playing it on an ipad – not as good as I hoped! It also wasn’t great to find out that some of the girls that travelled to the venue with the hen did their own Mr & Mrs quiz!! I know the pressure of organising a hen do and it sounds like you really put your heart and soul into it! Your friend is one lucky girl!

    • Oh Rachel that sounds terrible – I can’t believe someone else had done it without speaking to you when you went to all that effort. Did the groom not think to tell one of you it had already been done?!

  18. So glad you had an amazing weekend, it sounds incredible and bless Pete for coming to the rescue.

    I think I read almost everyday but never worry about taking time out – life is for living! xx

  19. Big thank you to all of you for your lovely comments and support again. Those couple of days before the hen were a nightmare but after it was all done I was able to relax and enjoy it – it was such a great weekend.

    I feel very lucky to have such wonderful readers 🙂


  20. Welcome back Rebecca, you were definitely missed!

    Don’t ever feel you have to apologise, I don’t know how you do it to be honest, running a blog like this is a full time job in itself let alone having a day job too!

    The hen do sounds amazing, your friend is very lucky to have you 🙂

  21. I’ve been reading you blog since you started & after reading this I will take the five mins out to comment more often. No more shall I be a silent lurker 🙂 It’s a fantastic blog & the effort and time you spend on it really shines through.

    But as everyone has said, don’t feel guilty for taking time out. Life has to be enjoyed!

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