24 October 2007

On a Roll ...

... It had to be done ... there was no sitting room carpet ... no chair to sit on ... just boxes of linen and fabrics, checked plastic laundry bags full of linen and fabrics, piles of lace to be sorted and priced ... and as for the hall ... sorry, all photos were censored ...

But, the sitting room is now beautifully tidy, (almost) empty of stock, dusted, polished, cushions plumped and looked good for a visit by a customer on Monday. It has 3 days to behave itself before Liz and Bronia (see Kelly's blog) come to visit on Saturday. There's a chance it will be OK because I'll be at Dairy House on Thursday, which leaves only 2 days to keep the bags and boxes under control! (I suggest you don't ask where the stock has actually gone ... suffice to say it's a good thing that Gillie isn't coming to stay this weekend! She'll get her own back soon though, as we shall be staying with her for a couple of nights next month!)

So, as this blog title implies, I'm on a roll. The car being empty for once, P has made several tip trips over the last day or so. We're pulling out part of a conifer hedge in order to accommodate my shed which should be arriving early in November.

The grand plan is that it will mean the house stays tidy ... I wish!!!! Anyway, I knew there were several unreuseable (if that's not a word then it should be) boxes in the garage, hidden amongst the multitude of other things that prevent the car ever finding its way in, and once P had gone off with those I decided it was time to inspect the contents of the plastic boxes in the furthest, darkest corner. Three hours later, and somewhat chilly (silly me, no jacket on), I emerged with a handful of Very Important Books.

I thought The Children of Willow Farm had gone for ever, never to be seen again, many years ago. I certainly don't remember packing it away - although we've moved so many times over the last 30 years that it may have been packed on the first move and remained hidden all this time. As you can see by the inscription, Grandad gave me this book in 1959. Can it really be that long ago? Can't wait to read it again and when I find the photo of Izzie and me with 2 lambs (Frisky and Whisky) which we led around on baler twine leads, you'll see that Penny in the book really must have been based on me!!!!! I hope I can find the photo!

I loved reading The Eskimo Doll and it was a book that I reread whenever I was poorly and off school. I need to read that again, too. The Albatross Book of Verse was another gift from Grandad, in 1964. I hated poetry at the time, but was thrilled a few years later to find that the poem entitled 'Leisure' by William Henry Davies was to be found within its pages. I love this poem and it is one of the few I ever managed to learn. Today I can only quote the first 2 lines:
"What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare."
I think it's time I learned it again. There's a lesson there, somewhere!

The Cradle Ship, with its lovely (out of focus photo) frontispiece illustration was first published in September 1916. This copy is the fifteenth edition, published in March 1941. It was Mum's book. I remember reading this in my little iron bed (which sadly Mum got rid of without my knowledge many years ago). I'm so glad this book has reappeared. There are 3 more beautiful colour illustrations by Florence Mary Anderson. If I can hold the camera steady enough I'll show you those as well!

The Children's Illustrated Encyclopaedia of General Knowledge was my Sunday evening get-out-of-going-to-bed book. I'd always find some reason for NEEDING to look up something just after bedtime was announced. I usually just looked at one particular favourite colour plate rather than expand my knowledge. The book was kept in the glass-fronted bookcase which Mum still has. I felt very grown up being allowed to turn the key, open the door and pick out a book!

This final book is a statement to positive thinking. Who am I kidding? I can't believe I actually bought it. I read a few pages. If I had read them all maybe I would be slim, but somehow I don't think so. Perhaps I should read it now. Who knows ... next time you see me I might be a shadow of my former self!!!

So, I'm off to attack another part of the garage today, check up with a local art dealer whether a miniature portrait I found in a box is going to earn me a fortune (if the writing on the back is to be believed then maybe it's worth a bob or two), and as the sun is now shining I might also manage to do something in the garden. Anything ... as long as I stay out of the sitting room!!!

Note: There are currently a few reductions in a pre-winter Sale in my shop


Clare said...

Hi Sue,

I hope the house stays tidy for Liz and Bronia's visit - although I doubt they'd notice if you distract them with a pile of vintage textiles and clothing!!!

How lovely to find your old childhood books. I don't think I have any of mine (just as well, as I was a voracious reader and would need a container to store the entire Enid Blyton collection!) Mike has a few childhood books and one of his favourites is Moby Dick.

Look forward to seeing you and Pauley en route in November!

Clare xx

cd&M said...

It is such a wonderful feeling when you find something so precious from your past that you thought had gone forever. Put them somewhere where you can see them every day from now on.

acorn and will said...

Oh gosh, you're making me feel bad - I need to get tidying too, we have been here for 10 months and I still haven't unpacked all the boxes!

I do hope the Giant Flea was successful for you, we wandered past but didn't stop as your stall was very busy - it looked great!


see you there! said...

You are unearthing your own history! Those books look interesting. I need to borrow the one on getting slim :-)


Curlew Country said...

Oh Sue I'm so thrilled you discovered your lovely old books -and Willow Farm from your grandad, how fantastic! I love Florence Mary Anerson's illustrations and I've just bought a beautiful card with one of her pictures on it for a friend who's had a baby. I wonder if it was from the Cradle Ship, it'd make sense.
Good on you for getting to grips. I'm in huge admiration, we're half in boxes, half-out - still no move date but we're hanging on in there. Lovely to hear from you.

BeachysCapeCodCupboard said...

How exciting that you found your childhood books! I remember my favorite books being "Heidi" and "The Magic Flute". Perhaps I should find mine and read them again, too! =)

anne bebbington said...

Childhood books are such treasures - my parents had a real clear-out some years ago and gave ALL our toys and books to charity without asking my siblings and I if we wanted first pick - it makes me very sad to think I have nothing from my childhood to show my children and eventually granchildren - Nigel has heaps thankfully. You can't keep the detritus of youth for ever but the odd well chosen item is always treasure

Rose Vintage said...

Hi Sue, Had a lovely time at Blind Lemon, thanks for recommending! I also met Liz and Bronia and did a post about them only to visit you and Kelly to find that they have been to vist both of you! How funny!

Love FMA illustrations....


Twinkle Pink said...

bOh for a tidy house, that would be sheer luxury. My work room is embarrassing now, and I have workmen in the toilet and kitchen. You can guess I don't want visitors at the moment.

I hope you have a great time with your visitors, well a better time than I am having right now LOL.

best wishes Ginny

Chris said...

How wonderful to find favourite old books like that. I don't have any from my childhood at all! Heidi was always my favourite too but I have no idea what happened to them :-)

photowannabe said...

I get sidetracked often looking at things and reading old letters etc. when I should be doing other things. So glad you got your room ready and I hope all goes well with your customer on Monday.