Hello and welcome!
I am Rachel, an educator living in North Cornwall. I studied marine biology at university. Which I sort of fell into after not really knowing at lot about what I wanted to do with my life. Having always had a curiosity about the sea, and a strong desire to live on the coast, this is what I decided to take. I’m so thankful I did, although some days my indecisive nature tries to lure me into thinking ‘what if.’. But my time in Swansea was fantastic, I made wonderful friends, memories and thoroughly enjoyed my studying. I guess this is also where my awareness of the natural world and the damage our modern lifestyles were having on both ourselves and the planet first got ignited. However, as a student, my funds were very limited and I found myself having to think quite creatively (or ignore my actions completely) in order to minimise my impacts.
I graduated with a first-class degree but I was still pretty clueless about my life plan – apart from the fact I wanted my work to support others, something that would allow me to keep learning and that meant I could eventually live by the sea. I trained as a teacher. I moved back in with my parents in the West Midlands for 2 years before moving to Cornwall.
Living beside the sea was a dream come true. Unfortunately, my job, which I really enjoyed (although I’m not sure I would say it was my passion) was no longer a highlight of my day. It was a dread. Perhaps fulfilling such a big part of my aspirations allowed me to recognised the limits in other aspects of my life?
I was crying almost every day and dreading any and every kind of meeting. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved planned lessons and my time spent with (most) classes but my anxiety was sky rocketing. Eventually I noticed that I was becoming ill and that if I didn’t act soon, both my mental and physical health would be severely impaired.
I took the bold decision to resign at the end of 2017. I had no idea what I wanted to do next. I went away to Cyprus over Christmas and in January I signed up to some teaching agencies who would provide me with supply teaching work for as long as I need. It was bliss. For the first time in my life again, my time was my own. I left the school at 3pm and the rest of the day I could do with as I wished. No more marking. No more parent-teacher meetings. Just time to invest in me.
Unfortunately, supply work, although a good income when I had days of work, wasn’t an income I could rely on and not knowing who or what I’d be teaching each day sent my anxiety spiralling again. Thankfully I was able to secure a more stable form of income with the National Trust. This allowed me to work within the local community, at the beach, with wonderful holiday makers and it gave me time to think and explore what I wanted to do.
Being on the beach, or near nature every day, makes you much more aware of how delicate our planet is compared to when we live fast lifestyles, surrounded by a concrete jungle. Over the last year, I have felt an ever-increasing pressure to live sustainably. Often, such a lifestyle appears unachievable, whether that’s through cost or time available. I have worked hard to seek out simple solutions, small tweaks and little steps that combine together and cumulatively are building to make a much more sustainable, greener future.
I have created this blog to combine together my knowledge and passions. Great food, the great outdoors and great advice.
Through this blog I will share my favourite nutritional dishes, all made from simple, sustainable, seasonal but most importantly budget friendly ingredients. You will also find stories about my outdoor adventures, mostly because I like to keep the up-country folk up to date with why Cornwall is the best place to be! Finally, I believe that my experiences, my quarter-life crisis if you will, have allowed me to be in a unique position to offer advice, support and reflections that may help others who feel overwhelmed, overworked or just a little bit lost like I did.
My ambition is now to train as a health coach so that I can help support others to live healthy and help to keep our planet healthy at the same time.