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2018, it's been real

27 December 2018

Hello! I hope you all had good Christmases. I know it can be a tough day as well as a happy one, so if you were getting through it then well done - it's not easy. If, like me, you were lucky enough to have a joyful Christmas with family and friends, then I hope you enjoyed it to the full and are feeling content and rested now that the big day is over. I love this sleepy quiet week, not only because of the lie-ins and sofa time it facilitates, but because it always gives me a welcome chance to reflect on all that I have, and feel truly thankful for it too.

2018 has been a year of highs and lows. A new home, exciting projects and celebrating joyful landmarks with our best friends (engagements, babies and more - I guess we really are grown ups now) have made this a memorable year for a lot of the right reasons. That said, I'm painfully aware that the lives we see on Instagram and on blogs such as mine are a highlights reel, as opposed to the full picture. I won't go into the sadness this year has also spelled here, but I will say that 2018 has not been all sweetness and light at all, and as such I'm definitely ready to welcome a new year and a fresh perspective in 2019.

So what have I been up to over the past 12 months? This year has been one of incredible growth for my wedding cake business - I've been lucky enough to be involved in so many big days, and am excited for what 2019 holds for my little venture. Those of you who follow me on Instagram may have already spotted that I now have a dedicated space for my wedding cakes, Here are some of my favourites from this year...

I've also worked with the amazing team at Nature's Finest Fruit to create a portfolio of seasonal recipes, which are easy, healthy and mostly quick to make. Nature's Finest share my enthusiasm for cooking seasonally, and it's been such a joy to work with them over the course of the year. Stay tuned for more fruit-based frolics in the new year!

Here on Pudding Lane, I've shared recipes for rhubarb and hazelnut mini pavlovaschocolate pistachio sable cookiesPBJ browniesdark chocolate, honey and hazelnut nougatprune and oat soda breadraspberry macaroons; blackcurrant, sloe gin and white chocolate Jaffa cakesmatcha pistachio blondiesleftover egg white brown butter and roast plum cake and tahini and dark chocolate cookies. This December, I've also shared six recipes for my DIY Christmas gift guide - check back next year for homemade festive inspiration! I've worked with some incredible brands this year, including Lakeland and Bacofoil - I still pinch myself that my little blog has led me to these kind of projects. 

Away from the blog, I've had an incredible year of travel. April saw us jet to Rome - Rob ran his first marathon in an incredible 2 hours 49 minutes, I spectated and kept cool with plenty of gelato and espresso. In July, my girlfriends and I had a blissful week in Puglia, Italy. We adored this gorgeous corner of Italy, exploring different beaches and gorging ourselves on delicious pasta and wine. We will definitely be back! In October, Rob and I dusted off our backpacks and travelled to Sri Lanka, where we packed in beaches, tea plantations, hikes and - of course - three days at the cricket in Galle, where England were playing. We even managed to wangle a little cameo on Sky Sports! Can you spot us?

And I think that's it! 2018 has definitely taught me to keep hold of the simple things, and to be thankful for all we have, as well as striving to meet goals and ambitions. With that in mind, thank YOU for reading along, for the likes and love, and for continuing to help my blog and foodie projects grow. I am so lucky to have this space and community.

Wishing you all the BEST year for 2019 - I have a good feeling about this one. Lots of love, Lucy x

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