Category: hope

Strange times

My beautiful pictureOn a whim, just before the summer holidays, I contacted a very wise former colleague and asked about getting back into governance.

I used to work for a number of different schools as what we call here the Clerk to the Governors.  When I finished at my last job, days seemed incredibly dark for a variety of reasons I won’t go in to here but as a result my confidence was at an all time low.

Over the last few years I have tried to learn to cope better with John’s illness and the stresses and strains that life has thrown our way, not always successfully.  I am learning to be kinder to myself and my quilting and handmade things have given me a new confidence.  Going to craft fairs and talking to people about what I do has helped me to understand the value of my abilities in a kinds of different parts of my life.

This week has done that too: an unexpected opportunity from an unlikely (I thought) source has made me see that I do have value to others beyond my front door.  I will try to remember this when stress rears its ugly head again.

I will continue to run Love Quilts and to make the things I love,; I haven’t stopped being a carer, the work I do can largely be done from home. I’m sure non of this will increase the frequency with which I update my blog!



 So after my last little splurge I have been quite quiet and unsettled.  Life, I suppose, is all about change and sometimes those changes are not comfortable even if they are inevitable.  I have taken the last few weeks to think about the future in a way that I haven’t done for a long time and with a clarity that has been absent for even longer.

We can’t change what has happened but we can change with the way we deal with the future.  Instead of accepting the world and what it does to me, I have decided to make my future happen.  Some of you will think this very odd as you have been doing this all your lives but it’s new to me.

I have a new website  over at Phoenix Trading; the thing that sparked our interest is that they are looking for artists so that would give us something we could do together from home.  If you follow the link here and then click through to my “about me”  page (at the top in the middle)  there’s a link at the bottom to a youtube video about this – do you know anyone arty?  There’s lots of info on my site but do check out the cards and gifts as they are beautiful.  I’m just waiting for my start-up kit to arrive and I’m unbelievably excited – can you tell.  If you know of any events – church fetes, playgroups, coffee mornings etc, etc who you think would like my cards and gifts please leave a comment. Any ideas welcome and I know you wonderful people are full of them.

>Summer lovin’


I must admit to not being a big fan of heat but long days of blue skies and sunshine, drying washing on the line and having the windows open all day and all night kind of make up for it.

It’s a month since John had stroke number 4 – the hospital have sort have decided that he may have a problem in the vessels in his brain – no shit sherlock. We have made some major lifestyle changes and we are both (apparently) looking if not feeling better for it.

Twenty five years ago on Monday, I joined the Wrens. I was so excited I could have popped. I met some amazing girls, who have, I have recently rediscovered, turned into clever, funny women.

Things are changing once more. Arty daughter is returning to being arty in September, surrealo son is loved up and organising things for people who like yellow, and the two year old genius is now eight. “The artist” is not arting at the moment but concentrating on not having any more brain storms and I am helping him get there. His beautiful pictures like the one above are featuring here. Expectations are being managed; the living is, as the song says, easy.

We are on the move again. The estate is being demolished and hopefully we will get a lovely new house out of it. You have to take, I have learnt, comfort where you can. You have to ac-sen-choo-ate the positive, for life and the way we live it is a fragile, transient thing.

I’m about ready to put my brain back into gear. I thought a spot of light reading might be in order, so if you don’t spot me wasting countles hours clogging your feed with my latest achievement in some distraction that purports to be a game, you’ll know where I am.

This afternoon we are intending to have a barbecue on our new oildrum barbecue, that’s if the weather holds. The rain will come again but for now I’ll just make hay.

>A foggy, foggy day


No, not in London town, but most certainly in Plymouth.

We are off to our camp in the country tomorrow for two weeks of Lizard loveliness, courtesy of Kate and Phil at Franchis (pictured left).

A year has made a big change. John and I are slowly coming to terms and learning to cope with his health problems and the help we have had from the NHS has been superb. We are trying to work out ways that we can work together from home in the future so that we don’t have to be relieant on out of work benefits. John cannot go out to work -well not without a supremely understanding employer and a number of adaptations and very close supervision – however we could, for the moment, work together from home. There has been no real clarification on the fact that John’s condition is, I believe, progressive – however, there is at least some sort of record of his ability now and that will be able to be measured in the future. There is also a recognition that his own intellect and articulacy has masked the cognitive impacts of his strokes.

Being at home together is providing a kinder, less stressed environment and we are moving together to make things better because we love each other.

My two older children continue to defy the paucity of expectation that many of the professional held for them in their early life. Thanks Sister Dympna for your lack of aspiration for and complete misjudgement of my children – you have spurred them on to achieve at all costs. I take that back. Apparently, I am the inspiration.

I take this opportunity to wish all my friends a very happy Easter, whether or not you believe. This is the time for new beginnings and hope.