Monday, 21 November 2016

So Much Has Happened …….

Can’t believe my last post was on 2nd January and posts before that were pretty intermittent …… let’s just say it’s been quite a year in many, many ways.  So, to start off on a high note, yes, I finally got to go to The Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm with Marc’s partner Rick, it was everything we dreamed of and much much more!!!!
Copy of IMG-20160514-WA0005We were just like two kids in a sweetshop and there was much girly squealing.  We went to the Judges Final on the Friday night and were the first two through the door, the first two at the souvenir stand and the first two served in the bar!  On Eurovision Night we were in the stadium next door for The Eurovision Party to see it all again, this time on the big screen, it was just too WONDERFUL!  Next year in the Ukraine isn’t really a feasible trip, but our experience was so brilliant, I don’t think we would rule out going again when a country a bit nearer home gets to host the competition.
In April I became Nanny Nell for the second time to Master Bertrum Andrew (a brother for Iris), he was a little whopper, weighing in at 9lbs 13ozs. He is such a little star, with as gorgeous a temperament as Iris.  They are the best thing that has ever, ever, ever happen to me. And, knowing that Bertie was on his way made making my planned move to Evesham even more important, (more of that later)
IMG-20160406-WA0003Copy of IMG-20160410-WA0003
Sadly, 2015 did not end and 2016 did not start well, The Duke’s father was given the news that he had bowel cancer on Christmas Eve.  A small operation that could have facilitated a larger operation later on sadly failed and no further treatment could be offered.  However, Colin was able to die peacefully and pain free in his own home a few months later, having received the most brilliant home nursing (sadly, however the same cannot be said for much of the hospital care he received).
023In January my younger brother died unexpectedly from pneumonia.  Many of you will remember him from the posts I used to write featuring the gifts he “made” at his special needs centre to bring home. It was absolutely heart breaking, however no one could have prepared me for the implosion his death caused within my family. The cracks had always been there, but in the end sadly and with regret I had to make the decision to walk away and severe ties, only time will tell if the damage can be mended.
008Then my own father died in May.  Again, it was a terrible  shock.  He was diagnosed with lung cancer but given a 98% chance of success  but that was not to be. He went into hospital a very fit and healthy man, having just mowed his large lawns, but after 4 weeks in hospital, circumstances lead to him not returning home. I could say so much more, but in the  end it wouldn’t achieve anything. He was given a wonderful farewell in a packed church with the most moving tributes paid to him by ex police colleagues, family and friends. In this life you reap what you sow and that was very evident that day!
028And, in the middle of this and other things I had set selling Castle Greysquirrel in to motion and began purchasing a flat in Evesham, alongside my daughter who was also leaving The Castle to buy her own home!  I am so glad I started the ball rolling early in February because when I look at Evesham now I don’t think I could afford to move!
I moved with very little.  I seriously downsized and on finding my flat soon realised next to nothing would fit, and on moving, found that what little I did keep didn’t go either (much to Marc’s delight, who tells me I do the most brilliant carboot sale, in the comfort of my new hall).  I E-bayed like there was no tomorrow, filled all the charity shops in the area, had a garage sale one Sunday morning, sent Lu on endless runs to the tip and most days left a huge pile of stuff at the bottom of the drive for anyone who would take it.
20140518_093228And my lovely Craftroom? Moving to a two bedroomed flat, I would say that 90% had to go, oh no!  All I kept was the stuff I couldn’t be without, and then the rest was sold on e-bay (dies, punches, embellishments), boxes and boxes were donated to various charity groups (papers, and stickers), and some offered to friends. It was heartbreaking, but in a way if was also a freeing experience.  A chance to start again, but knowing that storage would now be minimal, so things bought now have to be with a “proper” project in mind and then used, if possible, in their entirety. It certainly makes you think about what you “really need”, for example before I had boxes of beautiful 12” x 12” papers but in reality were something  I hardly ever used. 
dAnyway, on 8th June 2016 I finally moved into my new flat.  My stuff was kept in storage while it was decorated thoroughout and the carpets replaced by wooden floors. It came only with an Ikea TV console table thingy, a huge wardrobe that in the end I decided I couldn’t live with, an integral cooker, hob and a washing machine and I, in turn, brought a stool, a radio, bedding, a small suitcase and a borrowed double air bed.
cI then acquired two camping chairs and a picnic table…….
WP_20160609_09_06_03_Pro….. and then after a month or so I started to buy furniture and move in properly what little I had bought with me.
WP_20160712_08_45_07_ProIt’s been a journey, in too many ways to mention, and I now wish I had taken a few more photos, however I hope to show you a bit more of what I have done in future posts.
I am not crafting on any sort of scale at the moment, I have only made a few decorations this Christmas, and as of yet, no cards. I think this will be the first Christmas in 20 years that I will be sending shop bought cards,  but fiddle fart wise I feel up and ready to start the challenge again.   
I don’t really take that much notice of Blog Counters or positions, but after 10/11 months of not looking and or posting  I couldn’t help taking a little peek and be amazed by the traffic I still get and for what projects. I am not promising a post every day, more like every few days, but lets see, I guess blogging and crafting are too much part of my DNA to give up completely.