Saturday, 19 April 2014

Happy Easter

A much belated post, I am sorry, but I've been so taken up with mum and stuff I haven't felt like sitting down and faffing with blog posts. That sounds awful doesn't it? When I really enjoy blogging. And I haven't been busy-busy, just tired with lots of hospital visits and driving. I have managed lots of lovely musical treats and seeing friends, but the effort of taking photos and putting the post together has been a bit beyond me.

However, I would like to thanks everyone for the lovely comments you've left - I guess quite a few of us have been in a similar position, I have been really touched by the kind thoughts. And outside of blogland too, family and friends, and facebook friends from all over the Globe, just that contact, you know?

Mum is improving in her mobility after the hip replacement but her wound has been leaking a lot which has knocked her back, and she gets confused - but she knows she's confused - we have some great and hilarious conversations at times!

So I have done a bit of sewing, and here to prove it - I have actually finished and bound the Sunflower Farm Quilt! Hurrah! How long has that been hanging around??? All ready for Norfolk Open Studios next month. EEEeeeek! Already!

And finished the final One Bird cushion cover with help from Stitch and Bitch friends as I could not work out how to fold and cut the back to make the opening for the cushion, being somewhat spatially challenged! I made the buttons from stiff card and felted wool.

So I hope the Easter break is a happy one in your home, and you are enjoying the holiday. I meant to blog earlier and entreat you all to boycott Nestlé Easter eggs but I've left it too late - that is a post for another day perhaps.

Again, thanks for your lovely kind thoughts, and have a brilliant holiday, whatever you are doing!

Saturday, 5 April 2014

April Cheer

Apart from the fact that the day I decided to take these photographs happened to be a bit downcast, I think a bit of garden is quite the thing to keep up the cheeriness which broke out with the sunshine last week. We did suffer a bit with the Saharan sand-storm and other sundry pollutants, but thankfully it has passed on from East Anglia and my chest has stopped wheezing. That could of course be due to the steroids and antibiotics......

Our spring flowers are getting into their stride, and the garden is all prepped ready to be planted up and sown when the soil temperature improves a bit - and it is still very wet.

My mum has been moved from the acute orthopaedic ward out to a community hospital in Swaffham, about half an hour's drive away. I am so pleased she is there, I have high regard for the staff and their care here so I feel she is in a good place for the time being. We whizzed across to catch her for an hour the evening they transferred her, and as luck would have it, the session at the Canary and Linnet at Little Fransham falls on the same evening.  Tiny little pub with a small restaurant at the back and one small bar at the front. it was a bit of a squeeze but good fun.

Sarah is a brilliant fiddler, Dave on bodhran, Pete on flute, Terry on mandolin and Roger on uillean pipes

Jim propping up the bar. No, he wasn't bored, honest!

Rare shot of me on fiddle these days.

Georgia and I trying to pose.

It was just the pick-me-up I needed after the rather fraught week following mum's fall in her garden. It is her birthday on Monday - 92. She does pretty well considering, I think. We will have two days of family visiting and cards and cake tomorrow and Monday then we shall have to see how she is doing and what the Assessment Team think.

Just thought I'd pop in an extra post as I have been very lax these last few weeks. I would like to say a huge thank you to every one of you who have sent such lovely messages. Blogland may only be a 'virtual' community, but I am not the only blogger to have been on the receiving end of some wonderful heartwarming comments and support - and they DO count, believe me! It's all in the vibes, folks! Spread your kind intentions far and wide, and the world will be a nicer place. 

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

A Year in Books

Well here I am late again, I'm so sorry, but stuff has been happening. Some good stuff, certainly, but on the not so good side, my mum fell in the garden last Tuesday and fractured her neck of femur. She has had a partial hip replacement and physically is doing quite well. However, she is quite confused - much more so than usual, and I can't see us managing to get her back to her own little home again. It is very sad. I know there are packages of care, and we did actually have a pretty good system going between us, but I am so worried now about her being on her own at night. And to be honest, at the moment, she is a bit perplexed in time and space I think even during the day she would need someone with her constantly. We are waiting now to hear which unit she will be sent to for 're-hab', as our local hospital which has a purpose built wing for the elderly and re-hab, now apparently does not DO rehab. So it will be Downham Market, Swaffham or Fakenham.

Garden looking good - cheerful cowslips and primroses

In the meantime, I, who have not had so much as a head cold for nearly two years, - that's how retirement form the NHS improves your health! - has caught a head cold after two visits to the hospital, and now have exacerbation of asthma and a developing bronchitis. Nice. So, on antibiotics and steroids just when I could really NOT be doing with them!

My lovely Burwell Fiddle Class friend Debs

All of which, in-between hospital and surgery visits, leaves me plenty of time to read! I also managed a trip to my Burwell friend Deb's home in Godmanchester last Friday. She rang me to say our fiddle turor from the Burwell Bash, Jock Tildsley, was appearing with his band The New Rope String Band in Huntingdon, would I like to stay at hers and we could all go together? It was JUST what I needed. It was a hilarious gig, and afterwards another couple of Burwell Bashers came back to  Debs and also Jock came and parked his motor home on her drive for the night. We played very silly musical games as there were at least three fiddles, my melodeon, some boom-whackers, and a theorim which I have probably spelled incorrectly. It is a very strange instrument which makes weird sounds but you can play a scale and make a tune if you are clever. We weren't. A really lovely break, and great to see Jock and others who I usually only see once a year.

The New Rope String Band- minus Jock's wife Vera, at home with the children!

Jock, sorry about the terrible quality, I was too far away for a good shot.

Now then, back to books. I continue to race through the Game of Thrones epic, now on the final Dragon book, the last he has written (so far!) However this was not my Year in Books book. That was the Elly Griffiths newest publication "The Outcast Dead" which sees Ruth Galloway back in Norfolk and solving another historical conundrum, whilst dealing with her unorthodox relationship with her young daughter's father. All very satisfying and interest-holding. I look forward to her next! And those of you who have told me you've been inspired to check out her earlier novels - do let me know how you are getting on with them.

For March I have chosen a book by a favourite author of mine - Sally Vickers. I simply adore her first novel, "Miss Garnet's Angel", cannot get into her second, "Instances of the Number 3", and I have "Mr Golightly's Holiday" waiting my attention one day. This new one is her sixth novel, called "The Cleaner of Chartres" and is about the mysterious and elusive Agnes Morel whose little acts of kindness around the cathedral city of Chartres touch the lives of many. Then her tragic past is exposed and life for her can never be the same. I have begun reading this book and I can say she has, for me, regained the lovely flowing prose and human interest I last found in Miss Garnet's Angel. More about this next month!

I have only found this one Snake's Head Fritillary so far this spring.

So happy reading, folks, and I hope you are suitably impressed by the lovely weather we - here at least - have been enjoying. I was actually considering sun-tan lotion this afternoon as I sat out enjoying the flowers and herbs in our garden . Keep it up, weather, I can stand lots more of this!!