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Friday, 26 October 2012

Paradise would be...

"I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library." Jorge Luis Borges

The walk to the bus stop is short but the wait for the bus is long. It has been held up again. The fences have been blown away and there is sheep on the road. The bus trundles into the village, fighting against storms that hurl rage and wind unparalleled in strength. I begin to wonder if I should just let nature win. If I have lost this battle and should return home where it safe and warm and familiar, I do not know what this weather will turn into. My hair is whipped around my face, but through it I see the bus. It is dark and I hold my torch onto the road in front of me. There are no street lights near me and I don’t want the bus to splash me as it passes by.
On board I squeeze down the aisle fattened like a Christmas bird, but with layers of jumpers, jackets and scarves. I'm undressing as I descend through layers of red weather beaten faces, I want to reach the back, I want two seats together to place my things. Seated at the back, wet throughout I rummage in my bag to find something that will make it better. I find my book. I'm not in the bus anymore. I'm on an island or reading about an amazing person. I am finding criminals or moving from poor house to big house. I am not on the bus, I am with my book, and that, quite frankly, is my kind of paradise.


Thursday, 25 October 2012

Our Anniversary

It seems odd to think that we’ve been married for four years, but seeing as today is our anniversary I can’t really deny it. If I’d been asked I think I’d still have to count it up on my fingers.

“Year one, now I remember, we went to the Christening of my Bridesmaids second child,” I’d say. Although if asked at the time it would be a little more like this…”hic, why has she got a baby? Sob, sob, hic, why does she get TWO and I get none?”

I would then hold up another finger to count… “Ah, wedding anniversary two, the year we were supposed to go away,” I’d remember poignantly. However it really wouldn’t have sounded like that in the slightest, it really should be more like “He tells me we’re going away. He then gets voted into the club to take a senior role and he’s leaving me this one night a week. I mean how RUDE is he? Sure we can do anything any other night, and sure I’m really, really bogged down with the flu anyway, but he should be HERE, even though I’m sleeping. I know its TH’s only chance….but what about MEEEE?”

By this point I’d be pretty sure that yes, indeed, it had been four years, but I’d be getting into my stride by this point and count loudly “Oh yes, our third anniversary, poor TH was so upset when he found out he’d have to work away. But you know, when you’re married you really are grateful for the lovely time you have together and don’t think of it one bit!” Ahem…but you know me by now, you know I really thought “What? I repeat WHAT THE HECK?!! You’re going to Australia for two weeks? Two weeks? When? ON OUR ANNIVERSARY?”

So here we are at year four, and I will tell you exactly what’s going down in our house. “Do you want to go away? Head to Inverness or Edinburgh for a long weekend?” TH asks thoughtfully.

“Erm, no, not really. It sounds nice and all, but we live in a little cottage by the sea, I mean, we have pretty spectacular views any day of the week. How about we spend the weekend walking around Haddo House, going for high tea and having our supper in the pub?” I reply

“Sounds like a plan to me!” And whilst TH says this it is exactly what goes through my head too.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Halloween Party

Normally we never do anything for Halloween in our house. When TH and I first got together we lived in a small flat that wouldn’t have been inviting for Trick or Treaters as we were up two flights of stairs. When we moved out to the country we still didn’t really live in the type of area that little ones roamed as we are on one of the main roads through the village, so yet again didn’t do anything in particular.

Last year TH was away with work, however as an act or rebellion against this we are having a little get together with some friends for Halloween, then yet another little party as a Halloween/Bonfire Night/Birthday doo.

I'm addicted to pinterest which has already given me loads of ideas of things to do. I'm also keeping an eager eye on fellow bloggers who are always a treasure trove of brilliant ideas for different ‘holidays’.

This year I am certainly busier than before, but I can easily make time for this much fun!

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Auction Time

TH and I have been in and about auctions quite a lot recently. We have needed some ‘new’ furniture and it seemed a good place to start. We are both quite enthusiastic, but TH is much better than me and keeps me calm when I want to wave our number in the air!

I’ve been looking at a lot of Narnia wardrobes-which I inevitably wish to climb in to. It doesn’t help that there was an old fur coat next to one of them.

There are great big Victorian desks with faded green or red panels. I can picture Ebenezer Scrooge sitting at them by a meagre fire.
There are tall bookcases I can picture in the living room, paintings I can imagine in the hall and a whole host of other things.

However, the most interesting thing that I saw at the auction wasn’t a thing at all. The most interesting and beautiful thing that I saw was a little butterfly which must have got stuck in amongst the objects. When everyone else was bidding and discussing purchases I was chasing my butterfly and carrying it outside cautiously. They may have even thought that I was a very obvious thief the way I brazenly walked out while hiding something in my cupped hands!
Unfortunately we didn’t bid high enough to secure the couple of things we were seriously looking at, however we may find that those prices were the going rate and we will turn up with bigger pockets in future. In the meantime we love rummaging around and we may become much cooler with our bidding!

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Busy, Busy, Busy

I still do the occasional shift at my old job in the big black and orange DIY store. It is good for pin money, discount and I have a lot of good friends there.

Apart from it being a place for me to get good value garden things round about this time of year it becomes a good place for me to see Christmas things!

I know that it is annoying when shops do this, I completely agree that starting to doll the place up in glitter and glitz this many weeks before Christmas makes it water down the excitement that you do get.

However when it first appears and it does look sparkly and new it is quite nice, and normally made better because if you do get one small thing from the pile of decorations and fairy lights it makes you feel very organised and smug!

I have been working the last couple of days because of all of the people taking time off while their little ones are on holiday and now is the time that I am seeing all of these decorations being put on the shelves.

I'm even prematurely congratulating myself because I have been earning a little extra and have not yet blown budgets when I leave shopping until the last minute! Hmmm shall we wait and see how long this lasts!

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

My October

October is wonderful and if put into list form in my head (which I invariably do) you’d find it above March, which is The Husbands Birthday month and May, which is my own. You’d find it above all months and it would reign supreme, even above February which has Valentines Day, because October is the loveliest of months being the anniversary of our wedding day.
In October 2008 we wed on a particularly windy day. Bells were rung and toasts made and four years down the line we still love the look and feel of Autumn and are very glad that we made our wedding day right in the middle of it.
This October is different from the last as 2011 was full of trips away for TH, searches for a new job and a bit of uncertainty. The whole family has made similar comments at differing times after contemplation and we have all mentioned how last year we weren’t very festive. We didn’t do anything for Halloween, Bonfire Night, St Andrews Day or much in the run up to Christmas. This year is and will be very different and we have truly been blessed so far. Even with renewed energy to overcome anything in the future if things get hectic again.

This October we all feel like we are seeing things for the first time. We are having a small Halloween get together with some friends, and a joint Bonfire and Birthday Party at the beginning of next month. I have looked out the half finished Christmas projects of last year and I’m planning to use these to get ahead with some pretty home made decorations. (Although we may be moving we can still tinsel up the boxes!)
This October is wonderful because we have already been taking full advantage of the weather staying so calm for so long with very little exception. The nights get dark but TH and I are keen to head out directly after work to kick leaves and collect conkers not nibbled by squirrels.

The dark nights make me want to root around to the back of the cupboard for the slow cooker, I want roasts, I want crumble, I want s’mores!

So that’s our October, the very little plans that I have put here, but you know what? I'm so at peace. I believe that I have had time to rest, recuperate and start a fresh.

Now thats what i call busy

The long bright days that gleam and shimmer in the low sunshine has left us and we are surrounded by thick increasingly puncturing rainclouds. The baby blue sky is no more, but it is autumn now and we must expect as much.

I wish that I were preserving fruit, however I am doing no such thing. Nonetheless there are plans afoot and we must all learn to choose our battles. I am cultivating ideas if not the garden and making lists and lists for things to be done.

Autumn is the beginning. The beginning of school term, the beginning of a real change in the ground and the trees, it is the start of something new, and that is always exciting. Autumn is the start of the year for me. It is full of good things, of harvests and harvest festival, of spending more time contemplating inside, in the warmth. This is a time of nesting and resting.

The Husband and I may be moving in the New Year, however we are attempting to stay calm and not get carried away and let our hearts break if this wisp of an idea does not turn into something solid and stable.

So for now it is pottering, wondering and marching through the deep, thick mud which will keep me employed.  I love seeing what everyone is up to and can see out of their windows at this time of year.  I also love that even the bloggers that hardly blog-i.e. me, actually do find time in this climate to get the old computer machine chugging into action to see the old blog every now and again!

Monday, 15 October 2012

High Hopes

I think I have bemoaned my garden in previous posts. Once the reason we packed up and headed for the country, now it is a grind to see it in its current state.

It has been left too long and hasn’t had serious intervention since this time last year. We have been getting by, we have been coping, but it is one of those niggles that build and build. I am aiming to spend a very short amount of time over the coming weeks getting the worst dealt with and ensuring that we never end up in the situation again…..however I know that I will.

Oh well, I always say that Autumn is the start of my year, so why not try to stick to a resolution for once!

Friday, 12 October 2012

Old Friend Jack

Jack Frost will be visiting us up here in the North very soon. Each morning when I wake up it is very dark, and as I stumble through to the hallway to blast myself with bright, bright light I take a peek outside. The car is a little bit too shiny, the paths are a little bit too laminated. When I finally step outside I catch a wisp of my breath twirl through the air. If I have time-that is, if the chores of the previous night do not need to be done-I slip away for five minutes into the garden. I take my cup of tea and walk around. I lean down to pick at some weeds and pretty much stretch out the last bits of sloth I can. The Husband on the other hand is gently sleeping, Daisy Dog will by this time have moved into the warm space in bed I have just left.

Soon, when I step outside I may have to wear a scarf and wellies as my little slippers will get much too wet from the cold and leave patches of darkness all over our flooring.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Making the House Warm

If it’s a bit passé to write “It was a dark and stormy night….,” can you write the same thing about the mornings? All of a sudden it’s become darker when I wake up each morning. Lamps are going on when once there was no need. We had a rainy summer time, but I never needed light to get me through to the kitchen for that first cup of tea.

This is when I start replacing lamps and moving them around the house. I’m a really big fan of salt lamps, and they’re so warming and send out such a pretty amber glow in the once gloomy corners I place them in.

Apparently they are good for clearing up some dampness in the air-which helps when you’ve just come back from a long walk with Daisy Dog. So they are my current favourite thing and will probably continue to be until the daffs start poking their heads above the soil again.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Finding the Reading Corner

I have spent an awful lot of time recently reading cosily snuggled up burrowed into my bed. I’ve had a stinking cold which has built up steadily until it burst forth in a spate of coughing and sneezing, refusing to be held back any longer by lemsip. The cold has taken hold, and the only way to deal with it now is time.

I’ve got through a good many books that I have already read and love dearly. I have read for the first time a couple of books as well. None are highbrow; all are very easy and sentimental in prose. However I have to say that these are the best medicine. Not only the books in themselves, but the time taken to read them. The plans made to curl up to fit under a blanket. To push cushions all around me and settle down within them. The plans already made to make time, to put a slow roast in the oven, to light the candles and lamps, to take the phone off the hook…

I always seem to get a cold at this time of year, but I think a great many of us do seeing that we persevere with the light and summery clothes in a determined bid to make the most of any light or warmth. I have personally been pushed into the garden by seeing the mess left behind after gales that rip, tear and wreck anything in their path. The dying blooms hang dull and limp. The once beautiful harvest of cutting flowers swing from being dry and ready to pop their tiny seeds into the soil or damp and slimy deeply in need of being cut down and dug in.

None of the garden is fully under control, but that is for another post. There is time for that later, and in any case it simply must be done at a later date. I can not do it now and that is something the garden will just have to understand.