Furlough and what the team have been up to!

Like many other businesses, due to COVID-19 and these uncertain times, we sadly had to Furlough some of our lovely team members. Despite not seeing them every day, we catch up every Friday afternoon with drinks, discuss what everyone's been up to, and most of the time delving deep into what's going down in Bloodline! If you haven't seen it - we highly recommend it! 

In this blog, the members of our team who are on Furlough share some of the amazing things they've been up to whilst they have a little more time on their hands. From baking to online courses to artistic hobbies to being a full-time wonderwoman mum - they have certainly kept themselves busy! 

We hope you enjoy reading it as much as we have! 

Flora McGroovey

Along with the rest of Instagram, this strange period of quarantine has seen me bake endless loaves of banana bread, chocolate chip cookies and attempt most of the Ottolenghi cookbook. I also write a journal because I want to remember how weird this time is and if I am feeling very creative then I do the occasional poem! I have also found an amazing website that offers Ivy league university courses entirely free of cost which you can download and study in your own time. I am currently doing the Yale course – Introduction to Psychology. Psychology has forever been an area of interest to me and now is the ideal chance to learn more about it in a properly structured way. The course is spread across 6 weeks with different readings and tasks. Watch out - I shall be psychoanalysing you all over Zoom in the coming weeks! Not only has this offered my waistline a break from almond butter biscuits, but it’s also reminded me of how satisfying it is to go back to being at school, learning something new and challenging my quarantined, sleepy brain!

Bryony Milton

When we initially started working from home I moved out of London to base myself with a good friend of mine who lives in rural Gloucestershire. She has stunning views from her farm which were perfect for my new ‘office’ - my flat in London sadly couldn’t compete! 

When the pandemic escalated and a few of us were placed on the furlough scheme I was pleased that I had left London so early on. There are 24 competition horses on the farm, from youngsters up to horses which were gearing up towards the Tokyo Olympics so there is plenty to keep me busy and in a routine while on furlough which is great. I used to work with the horses, so it is easy to slip back into and it is also a great way to keep fit and active while the gyms are shut! They have had a few new members of staff join the team recently, so I’ve been able to help with some training and pass on some tricks of the trade! I am so lucky to be isolated with such a great bunch of people on the farm, and I’ve really enjoyed doing bits of teaching. We’ve been trying to think up ways to keep ourselves entertained in the evenings other than watching Netflix, and have done clay pigeon shooting and have even set up a badminton court in one of the fields! 

As everyone with livestock and within farming knows, work doesn’t stop just because everything else has ground to a halt - I’ve been out driving the tractor to get the fields in tip-top condition after the long winter ready for making hay in a few months time… a bit different to the day job that’s for sure! 

As for the horses, some are still ticking away with basic training where safe to do so, in case there is any chance of competing this season, while others are on an early holiday enjoying the sun in the fields. We are all feeling very fortunate to be isolating in such a stunning area, with plenty of fresh air, and the animals to keep us busy and in a normal-ish routine!

 

 

Sinead McCurrie

I knew keeping busy during my time on Furlough would be super important, and I now had the extra time on my hands to pick up a few old and new interests. Getting back to my studies was something that I wanted to do ASAP to ensure I was still getting that mental stimulation and keeping myself up to date in the study. I did my postgrad in analysing the financial aspect of terrorist cells and in anti-terrorism, which is still very relevant and has an abundance of resources to look at. Apart from my studies, I have also been trying to stay healthy and spend some time learning some new things in the kitchen, and getting back into some yoga, and also spending as much time as possible in the wonderful weather we’ve been having! 

 

Lucinda Libby

Furlough has been a strange time for us, but not all of it bad. As much as I would have loved to add to my own personal armoury in the form of a course or got heavily involved with baking banana bread, parenting a 2yr old just won't allow it. My husband is also stranded in Iraq, so we have both been very much going this alone.

We have got into a nice routine and once the sobbing at the sight of swings stopped we both very much enjoy our daily Gruffalo hunt in Battersea Park. The afternoons are kept for gardening and a lot of paddling pool action. Potentially too much tv watching going on and the level of sofa jumping is driving me up the wall - but I have just decided to let that go.

As desperate as I am to get back to work, I can often spend 50 hrs a week away from my very cute and darling daughter, so furlough has given me the opportunity for lots of cuddles and downtime. We all miss a lot of things, but I am ever an optimist and will turn this situation into a positive one.

Charlotte Orford

The lockdown has given me the opportunity and motivation to get back into my artistic practice, having started my career as a fine artist and art teacher for 10 years before moving into recruitment. I have enjoyed transcribing works by some of my favourite artists to get me back in the saddle and below is my copy of an oil still-life painting by Samuel Peploe.