2013, blog, Chichester, tattoo

Moving On Up

Exciting times, after months, yes, literally months of having Valerie, my web designer chase me at odd hours of the day with her occasionally being across the pond and being up at silly time of the night just so that she can catch me on Facebook, my bakery’s website is finally live.

This is my last post from the WordPress platform itself as posts are being transferred to my website, where you will find past and future posts on a separate tab. Please do visit the website, change your bookmark and sign up to be kept abreast (oh how I chortle at that word).

You can find the new website here.

See you on the other side. I have a pretty amusing post to follow. Remember that Miss Tattoo Liverpool competition I was in the finals for? I never did tell you what the outcome was, did I?


2013, bakery, blog, Chichester, Whipped&Baked

D Day (except it’s not)

In a nutshell: After several years of deliberating about it, I’m finally taking the plunge and opening a bakery in Chichester. The dream is to have a bakery which sells decadent cakes made al ingredients, sourced as locally as possible. The perfect time finally came along when a shop premises that has been in our family for over three generations finally became available again. These posts will chronicle our process of getting the shop reading for opening, hopefully in less than forty days.

We wanted to be opened by yesterday. Except I filled in the local Council’s food business registration a week later than intended which meant we legally could not open on the 1st of the month. Theoretically we should be opening on the 9th but somehow, I don’t think we will be ready by then. Instead we are having friends over to the bakery on the 9th for coffee taster session and aim to be open to the public on the 12th.

Saturday saw Slaveboy and I going over to Goring-by-Sea to pick up a purple sofa from a friend’s house. This sofa is well travelled, having been the set sofa for a New Orleans TV show and then travelling across the pond for a quaint but quirky life in Sussex. This friend is a fairly newly acquired one and sadly (for us) she is moving her family back to America, a move that she is very excited about. I do hope she doesn’t mind me mentioning her on here as I merely wanted to ponder upon how busy and hectic life gets with a family, home educating and raising teens that it’s taken the pick up of a sofa to make me realise that I have totally missed out on an opportunity to create a better friendship with her. So there we were, in the midst of her trying to organise her packing, exchanging a potted history of our lives and making plans to try harder to keep in touch.

Saturday also involved going to Ike-argh. It was stressful and that was before Slaveboy realised they weren’t serving meatballs on the cafe menu that day. Despite me having been organised with having product numbers listed down, it still didn’t stop us from getting very confused and fighting over whose will to live was lost first.

It was also Lalla’s invitational diving competition where she was up against 18 divers aged 14 to 18. Lalla mentioned that she just hoped that she wouldn’t place in the bottom 7 and that the chances of her gaining any medals were non-existent. Both Slaveboy and I got to the venue just in time for the start of her category and it wasn’t long before Slaveboy was growling at the commentator for repeatedly pronouncing Lalla’s name wrong.

There’s something about watching diving competitions. Each dive lasts mere seconds and if you blink, you stand the chance of missing it. It had been a while since I last saw Lalla dive and I was astounded to watch her do a double somersault inward dive. She’s certainly progressed much further than I had realised.

The wait for the results was tedious. We knew she had done reasonably well but we weren’t sure. Lalla had to be stopped by her coach from leaving straight after her last dive because she initially thought she’d done badly. It was only when she realised that they were about to announce the top 10 divers and her name had yet to be called that she perked up. Lalla placed 2nd with 3 points between her and the Gold medalist and her third dive was the highest scoring in her category.

Personally, I spent much of that competition, laying on the guilt on myself for having been so distracted by the bakery that I knew Lalla hadn’t quite received the support she could have needed. There’s a lot to be said about young adults who are so inwardly focused that the drive doesn’t need to rallied from others, it’s actually become ingrained.

But anyway, here are some photos. It’s late and I’m too tired to label them.




2013, bakery, blog, Chichester, Whipped&Baked

Three Days…. But who’s counting?

In a nutshell: After several years of deliberating about it, I’m finally taking the plunge and opening a bakery in Chichester. The dream is to have a bakery which sells decadent cakes made al ingredients, sourced as locally as possible. The perfect time finally came along when a shop premises that has been in our family for over three generations finally became available again. These posts will chronicle our process of getting the shop reading for opening, hopefully in less than forty days.

We all have stinking colds. The builder. Firstborn. Slaveboy. Yours truly. The house has truly fallen apart, laundry unwashed and sproglets have had to live on a diet of waffles, slow cooked brisket and aerated cream (not at the same time, I hasten to add).

Most days, I don’t even get to say five words to Slaveboy without it involving him telling me that we are x many tiles away from finishing or me telling him we are x many ££££ short. I also spent some time considering marital courting via text messages to keep the marriage fresh and keen.

There’s been more tiling. Finalising logo. Fantasising about wallpaper. Having the wooden floor sanded and varnished.

These guys did a sterling job.


The wooden floor had never seen the light of day at all.


Between the sproglets who’ve stepped up to the challenge and kept the home fire burning (literally) and regular refreshment at our local pub, The Park Tavern, we’ve been kept quite sane and pretty motivated.



We’ve picked up some snazzy low tables from the local drum shop.


These are going to look perfect with the purple sofa we are picking up this weekend.


I found the typo slightly amusing.


So this weekend, both Slaveboy and I will be off to Southampton’s Ikea where there would be a race to see who would lose the will to live first thus more deserving of the hotdog and at the same time we will be catching 15 year old Lalla compete in her diving completion.

Hopefully next week will see the oven delivery, the kitchen tiled and the counters built.

Yes, I do believe in fairies.

And so should you.

2012, blog, Chichester

In Which Sponge Went To The Cosmo Blog Awards Party

You probably remember a few months back me whiffling about this blog being shortlisted for the Cosmopolitan blog of the year award. The whole thing was a bit of a shock seeing that I was being very tardy with my posts and even more hilarious, the blog was shortlisted for the best food blogger of the year award. In an earlier post, I talked about how I didn’t feel that this blog was particularly just about food, but more that food is a common ground that all my experiences tend to share.


Like most things that I struggle to do well, blogging is a love/hate thing. I love the discipline that it requires. It’s a tricky balance of baring your soul, offering up access to your personal diary but maintaining enough awareness that while I am happy to take the piss out of my private life in the blogosphere, the lives of others (like my physical life friends and family) are not to be treated as fodder for my hastily hatched and half baked literary attempts at blogging.


The Cosmopolitan Blog Awards, if I remember it right, was on a Thursday. Thursday is my day of the week when I work at Wayside Organics from 10-2. I had my train ticket bought for a little after 3 which would get me into London with just half an hour spare to get myself to The Rose Club.

Let me just enlighten you to my Wayside Organics work attire. Cord jeans which used to belong to Slaveboy (I don’t own any trousers as such, except for one pair of jeans). Industrial strength granny knickers in white. Perfect for cold weather conditions. Warm vest with two pinholes in it. Tee shirt (random B52s band merch). Sweatshirt with hood (the last I checked, Slaveboy swore blind it was his but he doesn’t want it back anymore). Knee socks for extra warmth. A pair of ghastly black trainers with neon pink laces.

Oh. And a land girl style head scarf.

I couldn’t even romanticise the description of how I look on Thursdays if I tried and I studied English Literature at uni.

So take that image with you (I’m sorry) and realise the mere hour I had to get dressed before needing to catch the train to London. Add to that mix, the realisation that the shortlisted beauty bloggers will be looking fucking shit hot. And probably fifteen years younger too.

So by the time I got off the train in London, I had already fallen asleep twice on the train.

The award party, in the words of youths today, was immense. In old Sponge talk, it was overwhelming. Free flowing cocktails and loud music pumping. Beautifully dressed people with Colgate advert worthy sparkly smiles. It didn’t take long for me to realise that this was supposed to be a big deal.

And there I was, with crippled feet and a girdle hastily put on twisted that a chafe was rapidly developing.

I didn’t stay for the afterparty. I tried to catch up with some other food bloggers but it was desperately hard to spot anyone. I was pretty chuffed that a few non-food bloggers recognised me and took the time to say they loved reading my blog. Even the doorman chortled at my blog’s name.

I took a taxi all the way to London Victoria station and was pretty much spotted pinging and twanging my girdle through my skirt all the way down platform 19.

Overwhelming as it might have been, it was an eye opener. I got to see just how much effort these deserving shortlisted bloggers put into their blogging. I came away wanting to develop skills that I know would improve me as a blogger. I mean, let’s face it, my blog will be out there forever. Perhaps for longer than I will be around. It might disappear in the background, descending lower and lower in the rankings but the trail to it will remain. It’ll be in some way a matchbox-size representation of what my life is all about. The last thing I want is for it to go down as literary masturbation that should have been left in the confines of some grubby ink stained notebook – cathartic for the writer but bloody well awkward, cringeworthy and tedious for the onlookers.



Here’s a little ditty
I expect it ain’t going to be witty
But my coffee was sat by the kitty
Before I even got a sippy.

I’m aware of the moanings
Caused by the lack of my bloggy postings
But alas life is a bitch
And never do things go without a hitch.

And that is as far as my rhyming talent will go
My tardiness is very poor
The iOS 6 update
Has rendered my ipad obsolete (eeeek, close one).

I will be back, once the brand spanking new ipad arrives
When that happens, I will be boring you with the finer details of our lives.

Ta ta. Much love. Kiss kiss and mwah mwah. All that shiz.


FlourVonSponge Wants You…..

If you’ve been following my posts, you would know by now that I have been shortlisted for Cosmopolitan Blog Award 2012 in the food blogger category.

To say that I am stoked is an understatement. Life has been crazy at the moment, what with being four weeks into what appears to be a successful pop-up cake stall in Chichester. The monsoon-like rain we have been getting have not deterred the friendly customers but it has somewhat played havoc with the crispness of my lemon meringue pies.

You’ll be reading more and more about my cake stall endeavours in the next few weeks and my journey to consolidate the fact that no matter how much I love Chelsea buns, it appears my Belgian buns are a better seller.

If you feel so inclined to vote for my blog, there is a button on the right of the page. Thank you.