All good things must end

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This is a slightly difficult post to write, but I have decided that after The Fe-line Frock Swap on 30th May Fe-line will close its doors for the final time.

This has been an incredibly hard decision for me to make as over the last 3 and half years I have put a lot of myself into building the Fe-line brand, but sometimes you have to let something go, to be able to move on with the next part of your life.

Fe-line started life in 2012 as The Oxford Women’s Hub, at the time I was living in Oxford and looking for like minded women to share ideas with. And I found them, a lot of them and we shared our stories and inspired and helped each other.

It was this sharing and this community of women that changed my whole life, the way I looked at the world and most importantly the way that I looked at myself. I never believed in myself before Fe-line, I doubted my abilities all the time, but suddenly I was doing, I was achieving my goals.

I can say honestly and wholeheartedly that without Fe-line I would have never have been able to start The Wandering Kitchen, I would never have found a positive and strong relationship and I wouldn’t have my amazing son.

But I have been struggling with where I want to take Fe-line in the future and without a large amount of funding there isn’t really room for it to grow any further. And I actually think it has done what it was intended to do and that was put me back onto my path. I have become a stronger person.

Before now I haven’t been ready to let go, I wanted Fe-line to help others the way that it helped me, but I have been drifting further and further away from Oxford and from the community I created. This is where I am today, my priorities lie with my family and my business, The Wandering Kitchen and so with a very heavy heart I have finally made the decision that this is the end.

I want to thank everyone that has been involved with Fe-line, my team, especially Debs who has been there from the very first idea sparks of Fe-line and stuck with me until the very end, the Fe-line bloggers, everyone who has attended an event. I hope that it has helped you as much as it has helped me.

There are a couple of silver linings to this news:

1. It didn’t seem right to end without one more P-A-R-T-Y. Our last Frock Swap will be on Saturday 30th May at The Old Museum on St Aldate’s, there will be swishing, awesome stalls, a pop up café from The Wandering Kitchen (that will be selling celebratory Fe-line Cream Teas with celebratory Fe-line fizz), oh and as always there will be plenty of fun and frolics. Please come down and say a fond farewell to me and the cat.

2. Debs is going to be continuing the Book Club over on her new site Writer Hiker and we will be posting before the 30th May about how you keep up to date with the Book Club. But you need to check out her site, it’s pretty awesome and she made it all herself.

3. You can still follow my antics over on Twitter and Instagram.

Big Love as always,

Jo-Fe-line-signature

 

 

Image credit: Vivacious Mel Photography

On not eating meat…and not preaching about it

Hi, my name’s Emily and I am a pescetarian. “A WHAT?” you ask (and many people do). It’s not a well known word, and so it’s usually just easier to call myself a vegetarian, but I tend to say I don’t eat meat, as I do eat fish – so I’m not technically a vegetarian.

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I stopped eating meat when I was ten, because I didn’t like the idea of animals being killed or eating them, and I’ve never looked back since (17 years, in case you were wondering).

It’s not easy being a pescy. Not only do you get judged by vegetarians for eating fish, you often get judged by non-veggies, too. “Do you not think fish have feelings?” is just one of the questions I’ve been asked before. Because of this, I always feel the need to explain myself (even though I know I shouldn’t have to), so if you must know: I always intended to give fish up too, however I’m not the biggest fan of either cheese or eggs, which makes getting enough protein difficult. In the end I just never gave it up, because I also realised I’d miss it too much – I adore smoked salmon, prawns (and fish finger sandwiches, of course) and don’t think I’d do well without them. I’d miss fish in a way I don’t miss meat – there are a LOT of good meat alternatives, but not many fish ones. So, that’s why I am a pescetarian. I don’t think eating fish is any more okay than eating meat, and I don’t eat it all that often – and when I do, I always try to ensure it’s reliably sourced, too (although unfortunately that’s not always possible).

I don’t miss meat – like I said, there are so many options out there these days for non-meat eaters. I never disliked meat, and I’d be lying if I didn’t say I got the odd craving for something or other, but it’s never uncontrollable (funnily enough, many say bacon is what cracks most veggies, but I never liked it in the first place). Also, whenever I have got the odd craving for meat, I’ve always randomly seen something horrible about animal cruelty within the next few days that cements my beliefs and determination not to eat it.

There’s a view that most non-meaters are judgemental and preachy, mostly thanks to a minority that can’t be in the same room as meat, lecture others and generally give the rest of us a bad name – and unfortunately mean there are a lot of clichés around. Really, most of us aren’t that bad – I don’t care what others eat; it’s their choice what goes into their body, much like it’s my choice what goes into mine. However, the same non-judgemental attitude should be extended to us non-meat eaters – the amount of people that question my dietary choices is incredible. I don’t ask you why you eat meat, so why is it okay to ask me why I don’t?

The thing with preachy veggies is that the more you tell someone not to do something, often it makes them want to do it more. Preaching isn’t the right way of going about spreading your views; education is. So many people don’t even think about where their meat is coming from (look at the reaction to the horse meat scandal in 2013, for example). If more people did, the world would be a better place.

Basically, I eat what I want and don’t judge others for eating what they want. I just wish they’d extend the same courtesy to me, and hope they make educated, informed decisions about their diet – whatever it happens to be.

Emily

 

 

 

Image credit: Photo by wsilver on Flickr