After mooching around other people’s blogs a month or so ago, I came across the Foodie Penpals badge on 111lbs‘ blog. There’s me thinking “Wow! What a great idea! Shame there isn’t a UK version” (Foodie Penpals originally started up in the States under the Lean Green Bean). Then I start thinking “tut, American bloggers do all the good stuff in blog world”. I then jumped over to the Lean Green Bean’s blog, and saw a couple of UK submissions, so I thought perhaps there is a UK contingent. After reading the “How it works” bit, there’s a link to Carol Anne at This is Rock Salt who looks after the European side.
Now, Tub loves writing. Tub also loves parcels. This Foodie Penpals thing sounds like two great things rolled into one. After I’d read around the How It Works (UK style), the terms and conditions, and how you go about signing up, as well as a couple of blog posts on Reveal Days, I signed up. What is not to love! Writing + parcels = happy Tub!
I signed up in time for April, and I’m very excited about getting my penpal names tomorrow, and an ensuing weekend of produce hunting.
I keep meaning to post a bit on buying from independent businesses, and it seems like a good time to raise this. I live in a sleepy little seaside town, where there isn’t a huge amount of trade. It’s mostly full of charity shops and takeaways (I know, I’m really selling it!). There are also some fab little independent businesses around, but they are dwindling in their numbers, and more and more shop spaces seem to become available, only to be replaced with another takeaway or charity shop. It makes me sad. It makes me sad that people didn’t support that business enough for the people to make a living. Then I stand back and realise that I probably never shopped there either, which makes me even sadder. And I wonder why my hometown is dying on its feet?!
As a bit of background, my parents have a model train shop in Exeter. They’re independent. Both my father and mother have worked very hard to provide for our family over the years, and undoubtedly there are other shop owners in similar circumstances. While I don’t share the hobby that my parents cater to, it does make me think I need to support independent businesses more. Don’t get me wrong, large companies have their place, and everyone has to suit their budget. But I would like to be more responsible in my buying habits, and buy from local businesses more – they’re people like my dad after all. Ok, the £10 per month on Foodie Penpals isn’t any great shakes, but it’s more than I’ve done before. I am going to source my Foodie Penpals’ product from independent businesses. There are other areas that I can do this too – and I’ll get to this. I think this is very much a work in progress.
Business as usual for exercise – I’m off to kettlebells tonight. I think I shall treat myself to a bath after that tonight, given my muscles were sore after last week (sore seems such a small word for such pain).