summer holidays are here and in my book it’s time to look back and take stock. It’ s been ages since I posted here and there are reasons for it. Reason one, as lame and unoriginal as it may sound, is lack of time. Since January I’ve been working part-time on top of running my baking classes and baking for my home bake shop. As it’s also teaching, although not food-related, it requires a lot of energy, not to mention endless paper work that goes with it.
I had plenty of time to test recipes and create content for my social media, now I find myself juggling two jobs and feeling constantly behind with pretty much everything! For someone like me who’s been self-employed for over two decades and has always been well-organised it’s not a feeling I’m used to. It’s not all doom and gloom though, bear with me and I’ll get to it later.
some of my exciting business plans have been delayed and to be honest there wasn’t much news to share. You may recall that earlier this year I teamed up with the lovely Jean, a passionate cook, teacher and a former café owner, and we ran a few baking classes together. Looking for a suitable venue to hire was a real roller-coaster. After unexpected twists and turns, a family emergency and cancelled classes, we think we’ve finally found the kitchen we’ve been looking for so long! We’ll have more news in September once all is in place.
there have been some changes. After over two and a half years of baking, posting and delivering fresh artisan biscuits it’s time to slow down. My home-based online biscuit shop was a “lockdown baby” and a sort of replacement for the cancelled baking classes. I therefore no longer cater to individual orders, Rise and Shine bake shop is now solely a wholesale business supplying a few local cafés. It still makes me grin from ear to ear knowing that so many people out there have my biscuits with their tea and coffee every week.
What I love most of all and why I launched Rise and Shine in the first place back in late 2019 is baking for its therapeutic and educational benefits. I now run two regular community baking groups – baking for wellbeing group for adults at the wonderful community centre Likewise in South Hampstead and a class for Ukrainian children for a fantastic charity called Families 4 Peace. The latter is hosted by Sarum Hall School which generously lets us use their state of the art food studio.
I spent with my bakers and each class is incredibly rewarding. I’ve spoken and written about it many times before so I won’t bore you again, but I do love practising mindfulness through the magic of flour and how we all are in the moment when baking our way to wellbeing. My students are from seven years old to eighty six and baking with them is always a highlight of the week for me.
some incredible human beings and come autumn I hope to be involved in more community projects. I’ll keep you posted once they’ve come to fruition. As a result of all of the above, my blog isn’t going to be all about recipes anymore but more of a monthly newsletter with updates on upcoming classes and projects. It’s much more manageable this way and let’s face it, there are millions of free recipes out there, especially on Instagram! Written by very talented chefs, who unlike me, make a living from their online presence and are able to spend a few days back to back testing one recipe, filming it and posting about it.
I still offer private mobile classes and parties in the comfort of your own kitchen. Whether it’s a birthday party or a fun get-together, I’m there with my trolley full of baking equipment ready to bake up a storm! Next time you’ll hear from me will be in Sepetmber and fingers crossed it’ll be a list of exciting classes in the pipeline. For now, I’m taking a few weeks off to spend some screen-free time with family and friends, being in the moment and enjoying the sun. Have a lovely summer!