Thursday, 31 December 2015

Blessed Be

Happy New Year everybody...

We've been hard at it over at Little Winter... Well wrecking it to be truthful!




That was before we had a bit of this...

Then it's been right back to demolishing...

Three walls and all downstairs ceilings are down...stairs moved...plaster off remaining walls...what a state!!

But Monday the sandblaster is coming to clean off the fireplace and beams...then scaffolding will go up for builders to repair the chimney and tank some walls...a plummer is scheduled and an electrician...

I'm exhausted and have succumbed to the lurgee...all that dust hasn't helped I'm sure. Well meaning people are coming to the cottage telling us what they would have done...quite frankly I've had enough...emotionally doing all this for our daughter and her partner is quite weird when we've never been able to do it for ourselves. I'm not begrudging doing it, it's just I need it to be our home as well while trying to give them free rein in the decision making. And we have invested rather a lot in the deposit. It's just been easier to let them be legal owners outright as we hope to move on without needing financial gain within a few years. I'm sure the four of us will be fine living together when it's all done...but everyone wants to chip in their two pennith worth and therein lies the problem...leave us alone!!

Anyway were supposed to be going out for a bit shortly...so till next year...

J. x

 

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Anticipation

Nervous...for the amount of work that needs to be done

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Anxious...at the cost

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Happy...that we've been given an opportunity to help our daughter and her partner by living with them

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Sad...that we still won't be at Winters End

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Thankful...that all of our children want to come home with us whenever possible

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Honoured...we can help all of our children equally

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Relieved...that after 27 years we finally won't be renting

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Defiant...now I'm going to be able to look a family member in the eyes and say what I really feel

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Merry Christmas

Yule Tidings

Seasons Greetings

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I have a feeling I'm going to be kept busy!

Be safe, warm, and well...

J. x

 

Monday, 21 December 2015

Tweaked

Remembered the berries and changed candle...

And flash!

Yule Tidings to you all...

Now let's make merry!

J. x

 

Winter Solstice

Guess what we got today...


Lots of work ahead to make a new home...

It's been a week...stress...an upset scalding hot cup of tea...

And pyjama bottoms that wouldn't come off easily...

Ouch...

Then while gutting the turkeys we'd bought I cut myself on a very dirty knife...but they no longer give antibiotics as a precaution...hey ho...

So....what have I done on one of the longest evenings of the year...

My Yule log...(hubby fetched me a fresh one yesterday) nuff said!


 

Maybe I'll tweak it tomorrow...

But do you want a laugh...

I always maintain that every time I get ready for bed early either something happens or someone comes...

Well today my burn, which is at the top of my leg has been hurting rather a lot so I'd removed skirt and tights to let the air work its magic...

There I was in lovely knickers cutting greenery with gay abandon when knock knock on the door...

Oh my days...we had a visitor...hubby's best man at our wedding...I scooted up the hallway past him in a rather fetching blanket to retrieve my skirt!

Anyway...exciting though getting the key is today, we must also take the time to enjoy the season...

Night night...J. x

 

Monday, 14 December 2015

With A Little Help

This was the help...

A glass of sherry...

Or what remains of it!

Youngest and I have tried taming the tree...

We're reasonably pleased with the result. Daylight tomorrow may well change our minds...

Usually we wait for the winter solstice to put up the tree...but this year I was going to do the log...still mad as anything about hubby in his words 'sawing off the bent bit'...aka cutting the darn thing in half.

I want to find another and start again, but whether I shall have the time we'll see.

This was the log when it was whole and lovely...

Did I mention I was am really mad with my husband?!

Lots to do tomorrow so I'd better get some shut eye...J. x

 

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Too Much Tree!

Oh dear...we've really gone and done it this time...

Letting our youngest choose the festive tree...

Now we have too much tree...

At one point hubby was missing in action with a handsaw underneath...

And it's a first that we've actually had to tie the tree to some shelf brackets on the wall!

It took hubby and all the staff at the tree farm to encourage it through the netting machine...poor tree!

Tomorrow evening I hope we can make it look lovely...I'm having my doubts at the moment, but maybe it's just because a bare tree indoors doesn't look right...

Anyway...this evening I've started fiddling with some bits to try and make the place look pretty for what looks to be our last season here...

So far...

 

Trying to get the lighting right is awkward...too much and you lose the atmosphere of the picture...too little and it's a guessing game what the picture is of!

After work tomorrow I hope to complete the decorating...though I'll add the fresh greenery next weekend...

I had intended to make a huge Yule log...but after picking said log...and getting hubby to saw it...and bringing it home to dry for a few days...

I asked hubby to just saw the other end off the log where it had been cut for years...and well...he in his infinite wisdom saw fit to saw it in half...

BAD MOVE...

As I'd already explained to him I wanted to chisel out a rectangle in the centre to line with plastic and pop in some oasis for greenery and a candle...then drill a hole each side of this for two more candles...I wanted a long log so the greenery would drape over it...whatever he was thinking when he cut the so called bent bit off I don't know...however at the moment I'm very cross, and have withdrawn my tea making and conversational functions...

I guess I'll have to go get another log and sort it all out myself...and he just may have to learn how to use the washing machine and bake.

Such is life...I should have known better...if you want something doing...do it yourself.

J. x

 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Should Have Worn Wellies

The title of this post soon became apparent to me yesterday when taking Heidi for a lovely commons walk after her visit to the vet. (She had her annual booster).


But despite this happening to my boots it was lovely...

Things have been very hectic this past week...I've been packing up non essential items, having a major purge on 'bits'...trouble is I was brought up not to waste anything...so discarding things just because does not come easily to me...

However I have developed a cunning plan...I have a friend who just may appreciate some of our off cast items of loveliness...and am going to offer them to her before trying to glean a few pennies for them. Time is very precious, I've never used eBay to sell and it's so the wrong time of year for a car boot sale...however Little Winter is just that...LITTLE!

On Sunday we went to South Molton annual Christmas fat stock market...a great pity we got a soaking just walking from the car but it was full of good cheer...

And afterwards we headed for Arlington Court...a National Trust property who are holding a Christmas tree festival this year...

 

The dining room was my favourite, and I especially liked the baubles hanging from the ivy...maybe I'll replicate this sometime.

On returning home it was really dark and so we pulled out a little taste of festive loveliness to brighten things up...

I'm rather fussy about lights...so cool white in the kitchen...warm white in the hallway...no mixing in this house! The rather random drawer is one from the antique engineers desk I bought some time ago...the insides of the drawers are all rather 'used' and I've started to line them with felt to hopefully make a wonderful space for sewing, and knitting supplies...and hopefully Little Winter will be able to accommodate it! Big squeeze!!

We have been having some damaging strong winds...power cuts and the odd tree down but absolutely nothing like our friends up North...as a family we are all willing you to get through this...especially at this time of year...but remember in the Christmas story a baby was born in a stable and laid in a manger because his parents had been turned away from the inns...so a plea to anyone who is up north and lucky enough not to be floating around in sewerage...help those around you who are...and yes I would take in people if the situation arose locally.

Stick together in goodness and kindness...and let's outweigh at least some of the hatred and violence we hear about daily on our televisions.

J. X

 

Saturday, 5 December 2015

Getting Wrapped Up

In more ways than one I've been getting wrapped up...

Venturing outside earlier I wrapped up well against the elements...

This evening I wrapped up a couple of Yule gifts...

But they're hiding now...

It is very windy...

I have done some decluttering...

I need to do a lot more...

I need also to do some more creative making...

Earlier I managed to file our VAT return...

I'm always relieved when that's done...

Tomorrow I'm hoping for some time out with hubby...

But for now I'm happy by the fire keeping my feet warm on the dog...

However the lure of a nice warm bed is beginning to appeal...

J. x


 

 

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Progress

There was rather more paperwork to be done than I had hoped today, but later this afternoon I managed to get back to sewing...


First one bag...padded and lined was finished for a festive gift...

After a small struggle...

Blurry too...

This happened...

Not such an elegant photo...but anyway...the handles are ready to be sewn on bag no.2...just not tonight!

The outer material was quite a bargain at a craft show a while back...the lining is what I saved from the living room curtains when I unpicked them ready to remake with interlining (it was a little too short)...and the padding is some of the cotton bump interlining bought as a bulk bargain to remake the curtains. (With some to spare).

Now with material left...I'm hankering after doing something a little more complicated...though I may settle for un padded shopping bags...we'll see.

These are nice squishy bags, do if the chosen recipients don't appreciate them for their true purpose they can always shove their hands or feet into them to keep warm!

J. x

 

 

 

 

Having A Tidy Up

This morning I was woken from my deep slumber by an early delivery... I nearly put delivery man...but that sounds just wrong! Anyway with sleep weary eyes I stumbled towards the front door trying to not look as if I'd just climbed out of bed...though the dressing gown probably was a dead giveaway. Thanked said man for the parcel and then opened up my eyes enough to see that something had considerately opened up the bag of rubbish I'd removed from our bin last night as it was humming...and it is now strewn for all to see its contents in our front yard...lovely! The delivery man probably thinks he was delivering to a family of hillbillies...whoever they might be. I need a strong cup of tea before I tackle that little problem.

Anyway...I've been sat by the Esse with said cup of tea and started browsing my usual favourite blogs when it dawned on me that tastes change...some blogs I started following years ago no longer hold their appeal to me...some have vanished...and some have become so cluttered with adverts that I no longer feel relaxed when I take a peek at them. I've also removed a very old and incomplete list of blogs I follow on my own blog...you can I'm sure see the list...much more accurately on my profile page. So if you are someone I've unfollowed...no offence, I just need to unclutter my life a little...and all our tastes change over time...sometimes less is more, and I'm always finding new blogs to follow so in the end something's got to give.

I intend to have a full and productive day today so maybe later there will be some photos!

J. x

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Let's Not Worry

Well for a Tuesday I'm pretty chuffed with what I've achieved...

Someone was waiting for me...


We needed to fetch some of these...

But had to tramp through this...

With each armful of logs...

We got very muddy...

And the car is not in a pretty state...well it is in a state...but let's not worry about it...at least not right now...

While the fire is burning...

And Kirstie is on the telly...

Earlier on I had a woops moment when I sewed my bottom together instead of my top..

It's fixed now and I just need to stitch the handles to have a completed bag. The first of a few I need to make.

That's all for tonight...I still have to wrestle with our super king size duvet and cover...always fun.

Take care, J. x

 

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Rotten Weather But...

Today has been a day to stay indoors...light the fire and snuggle...well actually I have spent it mainly in the kitchen baking our festive celebration cake...

A double lining just like Mum used to do...

And I discovered...

That it's almost impossible to secure the string round the brown paper outside of a square cake tin with only one pair of hands! A round tin I can do without too much of a fuss but oh the woes the square shape caused me this morning...

But finally...


It was ready to go in the oven...I burnt myself sticking my hand in to check for a suitable temperature...the temperature gauge on our Esse is not known for being accurate! Yes the brown paper has been very well used for this purpose before!

Next it was a cup of coffee time and an illicit scraping of the bowl...

Yum.....and I'm pleased to say the cake is looking rather splendid if I do say so myself...

Next it was a task of curried parsnip soup that found me enthusiastically chopping up onions and some rather past their best parsnips...but I've tasted the finished soup and I'm sure it would be fit for a king! If I were to know one...it will also do very well for mine and hubby's dinner this evening...

After being blitzed...another yum!

And that is about as exciting as I need my Saturday to be, with a priority of keeping warm and well, though most of the heat is being sucked up the chimneys I'm doing my best to keep the home fires burning and give hubby a warm welcome and meal after his day out in the cold and wet.

Until next time keep safe, J. x