Friday, 2 February 2018

"Beautifully written. Warm, funny and charming."

"More! More!! Wonderful. Beautifully written. Warm, funny and charming. I do however have to put you on notice that I shall be pinching that Mark Twain quote!"

That was the first ever comment on my blog, when I tentatively put my writing "out there" for the very first time.

The blog was originally my friend Star's idea. She sent me a text in the summer of 2010 saying 'I'm just reading 'Agent Pegworth - Licensed to Cruise'. Why don't you write poetry anymore?'
I replied,
'Because I'm writing my memoir The Real Life of a Narrowboat Wife!'
 She wrote, 
'That's brilliant! You should start a blog called that - you might get a book deal, like that chick Wife in the North!'
I was about to retort with how unlikely it is that I could become one of these 'blogs to riches' stories whilst also being a hypnotic-motherin-multi-tasking maniac, but then I stopped myself. After all, you've got to be in it to win it. So I put My Real Life on the inter-web. For all to see. Since then my readers have described me as constant, addictive, intrinsic, perceptive, lyrical, tranquil and super! (comments on this post).

Through my blog I met dozens of other mummy bloggers and narrowboat bloggers, went to many blogging conferences, did online courses to make my blogging better, joined Twitter and made a Facebook page! I also started a supportive online group for Boat Families which now has over 600 members. I ended up freelance blogging for a living, writing for several narrowboat businesses and charities, and began having articles published in the waterways press. I guess I actually was a "blogs to riches" story after all!

But I never wrote that book.

So this year I'm going to start sending you stories from my real life, stuff that I will turn into a book. Old blog posts that you can't remember, or maybe never read in the first place. If you like what I send you, you can share the article. Blog it, Facebook it, Tweet it and re-Tweet it. Start by sharing this article. And maybe, just maybe, your friends, sister's colleague's nephews wife works for the people who published Wife in the North, and they are looking for another quirky mother's memoir right now...

To receive an article once a month sign up here, and I'll also send you the free e-book, Narrowboat Families. 

And if you have an idea, a creative idea, to write a blog, or a book, or create something new, and you're tempted to think that it could never be a success. Stop. Begin it. Do that thing. Because you never know where it could take you.
Lotsa love from,

Blogger, artist, narrowboater.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

This ONE Creative Trick Will Make Your Business Stand Out

Logo: Bags by Jane
What does your Facebook cover image say about you? If you have a business page on Facebook you have only a few seconds to grab attention, stand out from the crowd and show potential customers a little taste of your unique personality. That's where a low-cost art commission can really make you stand out.

I've recently added art commissions to my services for business owners. I have a degree in animation and have been creating Facebook logos and cover images for various narrowboat businesses, and roving traders such as Mark the Diesel Wizard, Ronni the Witchcrafter and Bags by Jane.

Look now: Peggy Pegworth's amazing online art gallery!

I also create bespoke logos and artwork, such as illustrations, website images, social media images, wedding invitations, birthday gifts, and cartoons of your friends and family. Contact me now if you want to discuss an art commission for your business. Prices start at only £30. I am, of course, still freelance blogging too; Check out my latest articles for Fox Narrowboats.


PS. Did you 'like' Narrowboat Wife on Facebook yet? ;-)

Facebook cover: Bags by Jane

Friday, 24 February 2017

Free e-book: Narrowboat Families

Have you ever wondered what it is like to live on a narrowboat with children? Is it cold in winter? What if the children fall in the water? All of your questions answered!

Yes please! Give me my e-book!

About the Author


My name is Peggy. I am a freelance blogger, narrowboater, mother, and online teacher (at Monetise Your MP3s).

After 13 years of living on a narrowboat I am now living in a cottage in Devon. Read more about that decision: A new direction.  

This blog is a three year archive packed with real life stories about my time spent living on a narrowboat with my husband and two young daughters. 

You could either dive in and read a random article, or grab yourself one of these free e-books to find out more about narrowboat life. 

For freelance blogging services you can contact me through my professional website or find me on Twitter @Boat_Wife and Facebook



Thursday, 26 May 2016

It's a Dog's Life on the Cut

After many years of living aboard I have persuaded Neil and Corinne that it’s time a dog’s point of view was heard on the blog. As I’m sure you are aware the idea of a ship’s cat is very outdated and everyone who’s anyone on the canals now has a resident dog.

I generally let Neil and Corinne choose our travelling routes providing that my meals and accommodation remain satisfactory. Every now and then we stop at a railway station and I allow a small select group of humans to join me on my next journey. When my guests arrive at the boat they tend to be a little overwhelmed at how charming my boats are; painted deep red and decorated with roses.  

I make sure Corinne, Neil and the crew give the boats a jolly good cleaning and tidying whilst the new guests drop their bags in to their cabins and perhaps explore locally a little. Later we all like to have afternoon tea, although I myself tend to choose something a little more meaty from the menu, than just tea and cake. Actually at meal times the humans are really quite sociable and seem to rather enjoy themselves.  My personal chef, Corinne, of course provides food to a four star standard for everyone on board.

When the guests first arrive I sometimes wonder how we will all get on, but they do usually tend to be quite lovely people and I can always disappear to my own cabin if I need a little “me” time. (I have a double cabin at the back of the motor boat, which I have agreed to share with Neil and Corinne.)

Both boats are 70 foot long narrowboats. Snipe has a diesel engine and tows the butty boat Taurus which does not have an engine.  Cruising at less than 4mph I love to feel the wind in my hair.  I like to sit in either of the fore-decks as we travel, but I also do get a marvellous view of the passing countryside when I sit on the roof. I see plenty of other dogs on the towpath as I cruise by, and they must regard me with the utmost respect when they see a dog with his own pair of traditional narrowboats.

When the mood takes me I take a stroll on the towpath and this helps me to check that the crew are operating the locks correctly. I do love towpath walks, there are lots of exciting things to see and sniff. I just have to look out for the occasional bike coming past. We pass quaint villages, old bridges, sheep and cows. Sometimes we like to visit a cosy pub for a drink and some food. Now and then the guests get off and go for a look round a local town or place of interest, and I get to have the boats to myself for a while.

Of course the real benefit for the guests though is getting to spend some quality time with a canal dog like me; the likes of which they have probably never met before. One of our recent guests (also called Corinne) came aboard my boats for her honeymoon.

“Corinne and Neil live on board all year with their lovely dog Bertie, he really is a lovely dog and such a sweet character. I had plenty of cuddles with him which helped on days when I missed the boys and Daisy Dog!”
From Corinne’s blog Motherhood Journeys.

If you’d like to join me on one of my canal voyages why not help yourself to a £50 discount* 
Don’t paws for thought –  just do it!


This post first appeared on the Canal Voyagers Hotel Boats blog and is re-published here in loving memory of Bertie P D Thomsett who sadly passed away 25/05/16.

*Discount & canal voyages no longer available. 

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

The Top 16 Narrowboat Bloggers

A recent article from Boats and Outboards discusses why more and more people are thinking about living on a boat. For some it's rising house prices, for others retirement, and some are looking for adventure!

Because of this they've come up with a list of some of their favourite living on a boat bloggers, to help to answer some common questions about living on a narrowboat. 

I'm happy to be listed among their top bloggers! Check out the other bloggers featured, for lots of different perspectives on living afloat. They have each provided a summary of what their blog is about and a section on what they enjoy about living on a boat. 

Monday, 22 December 2014

The #Narrowboat Wife Guide to Reinventing Yourself After #Divorce

When life hands you lemons you’re supposed to make lemonade right? After thirteen years as a narrowboat girl I had no idea what I was going to reinvent myself as. ‘The Narrowboat Ex Wife Who Lives in a Cottage in Devon But Still Writes Several Narrowboating Blogs’ was just too long for a new blog title.

So I started a completely different blog about how to take charge of your life and take care of your soul after a break-up. There’s no such thing as five guaranteed shortcuts for moving on in record time, but if there was then I might put these five beauties on the list: 

1. Let it Go

For a while I was practicing ‘letting go’ and one of the most important things I noticed was that I needed to let go of the idea of being my ‘best self’ all of the time. Holding on to that idea didn’t allow me to make mistakes, or to learn from my mistakes.

Can you accept that you’re a person who makes mistakes? What idea could you let go of, just for today? It may be the easiest way to forgive yourself.

2. Have a Perfect Day

Earlier this year I had a perfect day. I didn’t know it was going to be perfect but I did hope that it would be good. I started the day by sticking a post-it note on the bathroom mirror that said, ‘I love you.’ The second one said, ‘How can I make you happy today? It made me cringe to do it and it makes me cringe to write it, because I’m embarrassed by the thought of such airy-fairy new age love-yourself stuff. After all, most people think that kind of thing doesn’t work, right?

But I think that little thing made a difference that day. Do you deserve a perfect day?

3. Meditate

Have you tried meditation but just feel that you don’t really ‘get it’? Do you sit there searching for a Zen-like calm but within seconds you’re planning your shopping list or analysing the plot of last night’s telly programme?

You are not alone!

I too am challenged in the Zen department! So I had to do some research in to meditation techniques for people who just can’t stop thinking.

4. Make a Break-Up Bucket List

Last summer I discovered a great blog called The Break Up List. When Ali Burns’ nine year relationship ended, she made a list of things she’d been meaning to do over the past few years but never quite found the time.

It has inspired hundreds of people to do similar and I was just about to make my own, when I realised I already had one.

On New Year’s Eve I made a list of things to do in 2014 – some big like go on holiday, go in a hot air balloon, and some small like drink champagne, draw cartoons, and go swimming. I can’t believe how many of them I’ve done already, in less than a year. I also can't believe how long number 45 is taking me! Check out my Break-Up Bucket List.

5. Reinvent Yourself in 10 Days

Being a complete self-help book junkie, and personal-development-addict, it wasn’t long before I decided I should bundle up all of my reinventing research into an e-course and give it away!
If you’re going through or have been through a bad break-up, sticky separation or depressing divorce you could begin to reinvent yourself in 10 days with my little course.

In just 10 days from now you could be on your way to more health, wealth and happiness with a clearer idea of how to improve your relationships and career.

Is your life is too busy for a personal development course? This very simple, very quick, e-course is the solution you are looking for. Are you ready to get what you want, and want what you get?

Yes please! I like the sound of that. (Click to sign up - your email is safe with me!)

What sort of things have you tried when getting over a break-up, separation or divorce?

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

The Secret Waterways That Nobody Tells You About (Except Amy @nbwillow)

When I think about places to go and canals to see I think of the obvious holiday destinations: The idyllic Llangollen canal, the Norfolk Broads, or the popular Kennet and Avon. If I want to explore a city navigation I consider doing the London ring, or visiting Birmingham, which has more miles of canals than Venice. I had lived on a narrowboat for years before I realised that Cambridge and Ely are connected to the navigable canal network, via the East Anglian Fen waterways! Not far from London there’s a whole other water-world out there that nobody tells you about (except Amy, who blogs about living aboard in Cambridge!) 

For a long time all I knew of the world of canals was contained in the Nicholon’s canal guides, which don’t cover the Great Ouse, Cam or Middle Level waterways. (However, a range of canal books, canal maps, Imray’s canal guides, and DVDs for rivers including Middle Level, Ouse, and Nene are available in the Fox Narrowboats online shop. )

The East of England waterways have been described as “a hidden gem” by BBC Countryfile’s Adam Henson (pictured), perhaps because they offer peaceful and idyllic countryside cruises, shopping and eating in Ely and Cambridge, pretty walks, villages, churches,  cosy pubs, and the steam trains of the Nene Valley Railway. If you’re looking for uncrowded waters, beautiful little rivers, tourist attractions and historical places to visit then you may just have discovered the waterways’ best-kept secret. 

Imagine visiting the world famous Cambridge University and the grand Ely Cathedral, by canal boat! En route you’ll discover wildlife and wild flowers, traditional pubs and historic monuments. You can also visit St Ives; the birth place of Oliver Cromwell, on the banks of the river Great Ouse, and Oundle and Northampton.

When I find out about a waterway I haven’t heard of I always want to go exploring! It’s like that Star Trek thing of boldly going beyond the final frontier, except at three miles an hour, with a mug of coffee on the roof. Don’t you think that boating is just the best way to see England?!

If you’re canal-curious like me, check out Fox Narrowboats, a warm, friendly, family business offering narrowboat holidays and day boat hire in March, Cambridgeshire. As you know, I no longer blog about boats and living aboard here on Narrowboat Wife but if you want to read more about everything to do with boats and canal-life then you will now find me blogging regularly for the Fox Narrowboats blog. I’ve already written; Three Things You Must Do When Visiting Cambridge, and How Winter Threatens to Damage Your Narrowboat – Three Ways to Protect Yourself. 

Come and see, and let me know what you think of the new blog!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Fox Narrowboats: Narrowboat Holidays and Day Boat Hire. Check out their new blog to find out more about the Fens and get boating tips, advice, stories and news.