09 January 2012

2012 - May it be a good year ...

So, here we are! 2012 ... about time too, as I'd had enough of 2011 ...

Thank you all so much for your continued good wishes and maybe I'll manage to post more from now on. I have every intention of making 2012 a good year, and so far so good!

Paul has made such good progress and has put on all the weight he lost, thanks to his nightly 2.5 litres of nutrition circulating through his bloodstream via a Hickman line. What seemed such a daunting prospect back in August has turned into the norm, although I know he would love to be able to have a night off from being hooked up! Mind you, it could be a case of 'Be Careful What You Wish For' as that was the case at the beginning of December when a high temperature meant 5 days in Yeovil Hospital with no TPN while the line was tested for infection. Thankfully it turned out to be a dose of flu, but this will be the case every time his temperature goes above 38 degrees. However, we like to think we've moved on from that and he is looking better than he has looked for a very long time. His next follow-up at St Mark's Hospital is on 26 January. It'll be interesting to see what they have to say.

Dairy House Antiques continues to thrive, and Woo is now a firm fixture, keeping everyone on their toes and doing a brilliant job keeping me under control. My stress levels are improving by the day, and all seems set fair for the sort of year I'd like it to be ... not that there's any complacency. As December showed, anything can happen and plans may need to change without warning. But we can cope with that. It's become a way of life.I am, however, now able to spend more time at Dairy House. At the moment most days are covered, so I'm able to come and go without being tied to the desk. I was there on 4 separate occasions last week, which was something I questioned whether I'd ever be able to do again.

Despite all the despondency, doom and gloom, we had our best year yet, and 2011 brought us lots more new regular customers. Hopefully that trend will continue this year! On 20 November, at the end of National Antiques Week, we held a 'Christmas Market' at Dairy House, which turned out to be very successful for everyone involved. We held a raffle and offered mulled wine and mince pies to our visitors, and I'm delighted to say that we raised £255 for St Mark's Hospital Foundation.

Christmas came and went uneventfully, thank goodness. We spent Christmas Eve with Hannah, Rob and Florence the Granddaughter. There was plenty of laughter and present opening, although Paul's afternoon snooze meant he missed out on the hilarity of Flo's antics. She is almost 20 months old now and is a comedian just like her mother. I'm such a proud Gran (what Grandmother isn't!!!!). 

Last year I bought a French dolls bed, armoire and dressing table from Linda Clift at the Honiton Textile Fair. As Han and Rob had bought Florence a doll it seemed the ideal time to make the bedding and give it to her for Christmas. I was thrilled to find a Scheurer fabric in my stash which matched the colours of the 'bedroom suite' perfectly, and this became an eiderdown of sorts. I made a mattress and covered it with the tiny check cotton gingham that had been used as long runners on the tables at Han and Rob's wedding. A pillow and Irish linen pillowcase, a French linen sheet and a Welsh blanket completed the ensemble, On the back of the armoire is the name of the recipient and the date when I imagine a proud father or grandfather made it: Noel 1944. As Paul pointed out, it was made the year he was born!!

Mum and Gillie came to us on Christmas Day and that was the end of our festivities. I'm afraid I ignored anything decorative this year other than putting up our cards. Can you imagine - no tree! That was quite horrid, but just one thing too many to cope with. We spent the next week or so doing next to nothing, generally restoring the batteries and looking forward to a better year.

In a couple of weeks' time it'll be Mum's 91st birthday, followed at the end of March by our 35th Wedding Anniversary - where did that time go, then? Our grand plan, subject to change of course, is to have the window in our sitting room, which is quite wide, replaced with a single door and opening windows. It looks out onto the back garden and would make the room so much nicer. We're so lucky in so many ways. We don't really 'need' anything, and don't do much in the way of holidays as you know. Organising any while Paul's on TPN, whilst not an insurmountable problem, isn't anything we're particularly desperate to do, so the door to the garden seems like a good idea, and is something I've wanted to do ever since we moved here.

Next on the calendar willl be the Dairy House Annual Textile and Costume Day on Sunday 15 April, and with that in mind I'm hoping, with Woo's help, to have a grand sort out of my shed/studio. I have had so little time over the last 9 months to concentrate on all things textiley, so am looking forward to the rummage and finding out exactly what stock is there, forgotten and forlorn!!

Our other Dairy House plan is to hold an 'Outdoor Living ... Indoor Life' event at the beginning of July to kick off the summer season before the schools break up. We hope that these 2 newest events will become regulars on the Dairy House calendar in the same way that the Vintage Textiles & Costume Day has established itself.

Finally, my other grand plan (with moveable goalposts) for 2012 is to get back to sewing and being creative. When I look back at some of the creative projects I've worked on over the last (ssshhhh!!!!) 45+ years, I realise that the last 10 have been virtually 'make'-free, and that's something that needs to be rectified. I had such fun making the bedding for Florence's doll's bed and realise how much I've missed sewing, in particular. Far too silly when I look at the piles of vintage fabric and haberdashery I am storing and/or selling.

Onward and upward, yet again ...

I hope to be back here soon, maybe with some show-and-tell ... who knows!

Meanwhile a very Happy and Prosperous 2012 to you All.

Sue x