Posts tagged ‘work’

October 28, 2012

Life Changes

What a lot has happened and it still yet to happen. Over the past few months my teuxdeaux list has not helped manage my time or my mind with so many things happening unexpectedly and all in a rush.

Mr G and I spent the longest time we have ever spent together and without any children, ever. We stayed in towns and Premier Inns we had never visited, got used to what is ‘normal’ in hospice life, met people whose stories will be held in our hearts and minds for a long, long time and watched and waited with Mr G’s mum as she died. We now understand that dying is not one single act but lots of tiny ones, incremental nudges along the path as everything slows and changes.

As the days went by I began feeling that this kind of end we were seeing is a mirror of the beginning. Physical signs of birth begin slowly over time with the swelling belly, then the weariness, the anxiety and calm in waves, then knowing that it is real and it is really going to happen. There are signs that labour is nearing, small changes which gather in number and in pace. Then big signs come and there is no turning back, the stages are noted, some passing easily and others being more of a struggle. In death, as in birth, the baton is finally passed to the next generation to carry on.

We left the hospice feeling fundamentally altered and the normal world felt odd. We have both experienced this jarring feeling of grief before with our dad’s deaths but perhaps because we shared this experience with other families on the same journey and with staff who were such kind and patient companions we felt alone in more ways than just the obvious.

Our business clients have had to be patient with us as we’ve slowly tried to pick up all the things that were dropped for a fortnight and have taken longer to get back on track. We came back to a super tidy house thanks to my mum keeping the children on their toes and the washing up and laundry under control which makes me wonder why I can’t do that.

El Famosisimo was here one evening in the week and he and Mr G were joking about all sorts of things including getting a hot dog stand in town and calling it Abingdogs when G says that he can’t be bothered with the business any more as he was only doing it to prove to his parents that he was good at *something* and now they aren’t here, there’s no point. EF, somewhat gobsmacked but recovering his funnybone replies that he might have to keep up the charade for a bit longer as that’s going to be a difficult one to explain to all our clients then they both fall into hysterical laughter about how it’s all been a charade anyway and I’ve been the only one thinking it was all for real!

Eek! I sense changes afoot but not unwelcome ones. What could we do if we didn’t have to do what we are doing now? The possibilities are too many to contemplate so I’ve started sewing again to steady my nerves.

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April 19, 2012

To. Do.

I have only one thing to say this week and that is this:

Lists will never be lost or forgotten ever again. I have got more done this week than I did last week because I am keeping track of what I need to do instead of forgetting and then remembering again when I go to bed at night!

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August 12, 2011

Cakes and more cakes

These are some of the six dozen fairy cakes I’ve made today and managed to prevent The Family eating.

And here are some badges I’ve been making this week.

We are having a extravaganza thingy on Saturday in the Market Square along with other members of the Chamber of Commerce who provide services rather than selling stuff so we had to thin k of things to tempt people.

We have the cakes, fifty or so badges, a couple of hundred bio-degradable cornstarch pens (with instructions not to suck them too much!) blurb about what we do and fifty coloured envelopes holding a variety of cards. The girls filled the envelopes so we have no idea what card is in which colour but ten of the envelopes have a golden ticket in them entitling whoever gives us the card back, to ask us to sell their house – and not pay us a penny. We are mad.

Don’t the envelopes look gorgeous all stacked like this? Sometimes I am grateful that Mr G has a stationery fetish.

The stockbrokers who are in the offices below our 2nd floor office are having a ‘Guess the Weight of the Dog’ competition with the prize being a very large tin of chocolates. The boss has a labrador who comes to work with her every day and who everyone loves until she farts!

The solicitors weren’t planning on giving anything away until Mr G mentioned my cake baking skills. Apparently they are busy mixing a home made lemonade brew as I type!

It will be interesting to see what the other members have thought of to encourage people to do business with them instead of always heading for the big smoke. Our town is about to undergo a massive change and no on really knows how it will pan out in the future. Half the townsfolk talk the place down and the other half keep shopping locally and look on the bright side. I am one of the latter but I must confess that my horizons have shrunk considerably since we moved here ten years ago. I can go for weeks without leaving yokeldom and at least a week without needing to get in my car at all.

Today I did get in my car to buy a tray of eggs from a farm 4 miles away but buying a tray of eggs for a fiver was a no-brainer considering the number I have cracked into a bowl this afternoon.

Now we are hoping for a dry but not too hot day, with nothing more than a light breeze to threaten the gazebo. A bit of English summer will be just fine!

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May 28, 2011

Home Alone

This week has been a weird one with all sorts of things expected but still surprising when the day rolled around.

Last Saturday I had a fit of pique, put the back seats down in the car and started throwing things into it to get rid of. J and I made one trip to the dump which is now known as the Waste Recycling Centre but still appears to be the place where people dump stuff when they just can’t think of what else to do with it. I went with a firm thought that we were just going to leave things and not bring anything home. I went with El Famosisimo last time and we ended up with a bike and a stack of LPs including Abba and Elton Johns classics.

That done, the garden looked a bit less like a junk yard so I started on the sheds, the under stairs cupboard and the kitchen and filled the car up again ready for a 10am start at the car boot round the corner from us. We sold all sorts and I swapped my unused earth rake for a plastic springbok type rake with another stallholder which was nice. It was so wild and windy all day though that I came home with grit and dust in the creases round my eyes! We brought a lot less back with us than we set out with and the other bits have gone to the charity shop. We had enough money keep a bit of cash on our wallets as well as buy a massive piece of beef which lasted from Sunday dinner to Wednesday lunch which is not bad going in this house.

Wednesday was our wedding anniversary – 9 years working hard, raising an ever growing family and moving furniture around. How do we do it? I have no idea but we are pleased to have, once again, confounded my ILs who were convinced that it wouldn’t last. My MIL called me after the first time she met me back in 1999 to tell me that I wasn’t what she had planned for her son. This woman has some front and her daughter has inherited a good chunk of it too.

So, the day came sort of unexpectedly and we were unprepared. No cards or gifts of pottery or willow but lots of rushing about all day including me going to work (I keep forgetting I’ve got a job tutoring some small boys in maths) leaving Mr G to take the girls with him to collect EF and drop him at the orthodontist. We remembered the day was today so we ate our dinner at home then left EF with the others and went out for pudding at Ask in town where we sat at a table next to the parents of the lad we employ twice a week to do virtual filing…. and across from a new tenant. This town is too small, I tell you!

When we got back there were three extra young men in our living room playing guitar, googling stuff on youtube and drinking tea with biscuits. What is the youth of today coming to? Thank goodness they aren’t as reckless as I remember being.

Thursday was more work and more tutoring and panicking about getting out early on Friday morning. All was well and we had a good day. Then I forgot that I have to take J to fencing at 7.30 and I hadn’t cooked anything by 7.00 so we went out hungry-ish. I am losing my head, I am sure.

Well today I am Home Alone or at least it seems that way with the girls and Mr G away again at the ILs. His sister didn’t tell him that his folks were visiting her last week so he wasn’t able to give his dad his 65th birthday gift by easily driving for 20 mins to her place but instead is now trekking three and a half hours to give it to him in Lyme Regis where they live.

El Famosisimo has been out for most of the day so I have been here with J who is not much into conversation or neediness which is a welcome break from a day with his sisters and their demands. I have cleared out all sorts from the living room and he spent the day reading a book called Enders Game which he has almost finished now. There is dinner in the oven, EF is due home to eat with us and I have been addressing my pile of odd things that needed sewing solutions.

Miss Amoo’s fleece jacket was bought for a pound by my mum last year but the sleeves were too long and against my better judgement Moo cut them off a bit shorter. Now of course they are short so I’ve reused the ribbing I cut from a sweatshirt of my Dad’s which became the waistband of the upcycled jeans last year to make some loose cuffs. The colour match isn’t great but they should reach her wrists now.

The badge is her favourite

This next shirt I bought years ago thinking I could make a skirt or something from it but never got round to it. Miss Amoo has grown so much that it fits her as a long, loose, tunic sort of thing so I’ve fixed the ripped underarm seams and top stitched the sleeve bindings which I think I had unpicked in order to fix the tears at some point.

I bought this skirt at a jumble sale as despite it being way too small for me the fabric was buttery soft and draped well.

I made a little skirt with a ribbed waistband from the original lower part of the skirt last year and this yoke has been hanging about because I can’t throw it away….. I am planning to add a skirt to it for Miss Amoo as she will like the pockets. I will need to take some width out of the back seam but I’ll see what I can do.

The weekend’s other challenges area: to clear the bedroom so it doesn’t look like a jumble sale; to sew a drawstring bag for the air bed pump and power pack that has been in the living room for some reason and whose box is now flat… to sew up some more origami purses that are cut and ready and lastly I really want to sew myself a pair of summer trousers with 2m of chocolate brown linen I bought last summer for this purpose but didn’t sew up. I am going to use New Look 6190 which I sewed back when I couldn’t get any trousers on over my DVT leg as it was so swollen. There is a ridiculous amount of ease in this pattern and I took 3″ off the waistband last time I sewed it so I will have to make some adjustments there this time to save mucking about later.

If I find any other upcycles that could be finished today or tomorrow I will do them too but now I’m going to have a cup of tea and get ready to sit on the sofa for 90 minutes watching Wallander without being bale to multi task as it has subtitles!.