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The Lost Art of Collages (or Just a Post About My Girls)

It’s been an interesting couple of days. A ridiculous sounding virus called ‘Slapcheek’ has covered Eliza in a rash and has given her the literal appearance of slapped cheeks. At least I think that’s what it is, the doctor didn’t really know when I took her in on Monday. Said she had a ‘non-specific viral rash’, yes but is it contagious I asked, no he said but she shouldn’t go to school.

So she stayed at home with me yesterday which was nice as I had a day off in lieu of some weekend work recently, so we made some collages of our ideal gardens, amongst other things. Eliza was getting very into the idea and cut out a gorgeous green house that she said I’d like very much wouldn’t I? Of course I would. There’s little better than cutting out pictures from magazines and sticking them on a piece of card to create a fantasy world. I used to love making collages as a child. Tearing up my mother’s old copies of Vogue and nicking my sister’s (very expensive) Daler boards, and I realised yesterday that I still love it.

I believe it’s what we used to do before Pinterest. And it’s about a thousand times more fun. Thanks to the stack of RHS magazines we have (no Vogues here, my mother would be disappointed) we were able to create ‘mood boards’ for our perfect gardens. We bonded over herb gardens and violas. It was wonderful.

Making collages with Eliza

Making collages with Eliza

My garden inspiration with a little help from Eliza

My garden inspiration with a little help from Eliza

Today I took her to school because she seemed fine in herself and the rash was getting fainter, also I’m ashamed to admit that I really did have a lot of work to do and sort of needed her to be okay, but they called me at about 10.30 and said she had a temperature and that she had to be picked up. Naturally I felt like the worst mother in the world for sending my poor sick, slap cheeked child to school, but as I suspected she was fine. The symptoms look a lot worse that the reality. She didn’t have a temperature and far from lying on the sofa watching TV (which is all I ever wanted to do when my mother had to pick me up from school because I was ill) she wanted to do more cutting and sticking and playing Princesses when she got home.

I had a few calls to make and fortunately one of them was to the Nicest Client in the Known World and so she didn’t mind my breaking off to answer Eliza’s incessant questions during our call. I, of course, felt deeply unprofessional but then again I am a mother and these things do happen so I soon got over it.

We are changing our childcare once again and with that comes the inevitable game of Double of Drop as I try and keep everything from falling apart whilst I band aid over the cracks until things settle down again. But you know what? I’m getting MUCH better at it and the girls are getting much more used to it. They know, after all, that I’m never changing and that’s got to be the most important thing. And it’s these times when we’re ‘in between’ nannies/au pairs/ childminders that I get to spend more time with them which is all in all a very good thing indeed.

Just as long as I keep those plates spinning.

The girls together

The girls together



  1. claire reid says:

    hey holly

    that is the CUTEST picture of you 3!
    i have just made a garden mood board for a client- i loved it- spent hours over it, much to Pete’s amusement, but it really helped… not just the client but my mental state too!!
    lets face it we have spent so many years dreaming of our perfect house and garden and its much easier to make it on a mood board than in real life!

    lots of love to you all

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