Sunday, 3 January 2016

How 2015 ended and 2016 begun

Belated HAPPY NEW YEAR to everyone.
Missed writing so it was only a very short break..........hardly a break at all ........apologies for that last post, feeling sorry for myself isn't something I usually do so thank you  to everyone who said they enjoyed reading about our quiet life, you gave me the kick up the backside I needed to keep writing, which I do enjoy.
 BIG thank you to everyone for the kind comments about Colin after my last post, especially all the people who know someone going through the same thing. I think we both felt a bit down because first we were waiting almost 2 months to find out what was wrong with him, now waiting to find out what needs to be done and I'm not good at waiting....... prefer to be getting on with it.........preferably starting now.......... not hanging around for another fortnight, but we are where we are.

 Anyway, my pen and paper diary has still been written so I can tell you what we've been doing since my last diary post.

On Monday 28th December we went across Suffolk to have a day at our Son and Future D-in-L's home. It's such a treat to be cooked for. Col's brother and Dad were invited as well, it was good to see them as Col's Dad isn't well enough to travel right over to us at Knodishall.

 Tuesday 29th December we were at home catching up on jobs and putting Christmas back in it's box, sealed and labelled to move to Ipswich. Col got the front loader on the tractor to take the last 3 builders bags of split logs into the shed.

 Wednesday 30th December we travelled down to Finchingfield in Essex to visit friends. We had a present swap and delicious food - I could quite get used to eating out at friends and relatives! We walked down into the village for a breath of fresh air. Although our friends will not be affected  -they will actually have a much quieter time - there is a   Huge debate going on in the village  because the bridge over the river is due to be closed for at least 4 months for replacement, with a 13 mile detour to get from one side to the other for small vehicles and 28 miles detour for big lorries -  4 months seems a long time. There is a petition in the village for a temporary bridge as several of the businesses depend on tourist trade which could be seriously affected.

Thursday 31st New Years Eve. A lovely bright day. I stripped the spare double bed - no one else coming to stay before we move- and our youngest came to collect it. They have been sleeping on a mattress on the floor for 7 months since their bed frame fell to bits.

New Years Day. Sorry but there are NO resolutions or NO challenges of any sort to read about on this blog. Just an ordinary quiet life adjusting to living on savings, coping with illness and moving house.
  The wind was in the right direction at last for Col to burn up a whole load of rubbish including an old armchair, sawdust from wood cutting and the top part of the tree - all ivy- that came down in the wind a few weeks ago. He did all the shifting with the mower trailer and tractor but was still shattered when he'd finished. I did boring ironing, boring sorting of last years paperwork in our filing system (bottom drawer of dresser) and boring filing-in-the-right-place of the papers that needed keeping! Actually it was good to get these jobs done so not really boring AND while sorting I re-read the pension gumph that Col got about his County-Council pension and I think he can get the whole amount at age 60 - in 2017 - rather than just 75% (which is how we had interpreted it on first reading) and as its currently standing at about £11,000, that will make a HUGE difference to how far the savings will stretch.
Watched the 5th episode of Dickensian and the Sherlock special -which left me totally confused but no nightmares afterwards - thank goodness.

Saturday 2nd January. Because we are leaving the bookshelves that are all fixed to the walls in the hall, we rounded up the three old stained-wood shelves that Col made years ago (one was in the craft room, one in the front porch and one out in the campsite recreation room) and trundled them up to the work shop where Col will sand them down - a bit at a time - and - hopefully- cover the dark wood-stain with light paint. At least that's the plan - is there a paint that will cover wood-stain? Anyone know?

Sunday 3rd January. After turning the mattress on our bed last week and finding the cover had split even more than a month earlier we decided to catch the tail end of the Dreams sale and go and get a new one. Do you know that you can pay over £1,000 for a mattress? Luckily we found one for a lot less than that - phew! Hope this mattress lasts as long as the old one as we think we've had that 13 years. Delivery due 12th so not too long to wait

So here we are up to date.
Apologies again for that self-pitying, down-in-the-dumps post. I'm feeling more up beat now. Ready to get on with what ever is thrown at us and anyway I've got books to read, dishcloths to knit, cards to craft and pennies to be stretched.

Back Tomorrow - almost definitely!
Sue

PS I've started a new page - Books read 2016. Will I top the 102 read in 2015?

84 comments:

  1. Glad to hear that you are feeling more positive Sue - we do wish you both all the best over the coming months.

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  2. It's those mundane jobs that hang over our heads, but getting them done feels so good, doesn't it? It's always good to get a mattress set on sale, they can be very expensive. I hope 2016 is a year of good health and new beginnings. -Jenn

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    1. I'm glad we went and caught the January sales for a mattress, we've been thinking about it for months, so another thing sorted.

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  3. Glad to see you back Sue, I was hoping it wouldn't be for long, yours is the first blog I look for each day and I have found plenty of others to read on your blog list. Wishing you both well and I hope it helps that you have many readers thinking and sending you positivity acrooss the internet. Thankyou for writing again!

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    2. I was flabbergasted to see so many comments, I do love writing the blog

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  4. Glad to see you back. I always enjoy your blog and hope Col gets treatment soon. I like seeing your book lists as it gives me ideas of what to read.

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    1. The library van isn't due until the 22nd - sadly, good thing my shelves are full, I hope I can share more ideas this year

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  5. Good to find your new post to read - and to inspire me to get on with all those mundane jobs. Cheers!

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  6. The Annie Sloane paint is suppose to cover up all sorts of things but its not cheap, I am sure there must be other paints suitable for furniture that work just as well, we could do with a new mattress but I am holding out for a while they are a bit like pillows and take some getting used to, pillows are the bane of my life, Happy new year to you both and I hope things work out well for you both.

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    1. I'm wanting new pillows as the polyester ones I've got are so hot. I know what you mean about getting used to new

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    2. There are home made chalk paint recipes which work pretty well but not sure how hard wearing they are, you can get a sealer too but that's extra work and spending!

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  7. It's great to see you posting again - I know that I would have missed reading about how you are getting on! I'm also glad to read that you will be able to access more of Col's pension that you expected. All the best, Jx

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  8. The reason behind my absences from blogging are the same. I always think it bad form to moan! But facts are facts and what happens is part of life. Part of all our lives. So glad you decided to carry on. Perhaps I should learn to just say what has happened and leave it at that!

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    1. It was a bit of a shock to hear what Col had got but we've got used to the idea and hope he gets sorted soon

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  9. Good to see you posting again, i empathise with you more than most as my hubby has been recently diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma (asbestos cancer)and is halfway through chemo,so it is a waiting game to see if the tumour has shrunk. We carry on as well as we can we had a lovely christmas with family and grandchildren. Happy new year to you and Col

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    1. Thank you - I hope your husband's treatment goes well, waiting is the worst thing

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    2. Many thanks for your good wishes. Definitely waiting is the worst.

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  10. Glad to hear you sounding more upbeat, the problem with illness is that the outcome is out of our hands, we just have to go along with medical advice, hope treatment does not take too long. The sun has come out in Dorset after 2 days of continual rain, we are looking towards the light at last. Sarah.

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    1. It's the waiting that I'm not good at.
      Terrible weather here again tonight - very windy and wet

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  11. Hey Sue, just catching up on my blog reading. Sorry to hear your news, you really have no need to apologise. I wish you both all the best for the new year.

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  12. So nice to read your feeling better.I know what it is like to feel so down for us it was two years ago when we had to go through a terrible time like you. Rose

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    1. Waiting is very unsettling, I like to be getting on with things

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  13. I'm pleased to see you more upbeat, but never be sorry for being down in the dumps. Goodness only knows, although you have plenty to look forward to, there are challenges ahead too.
    I am standing down on my blog too for a short while but will try to keep up on my reading list.
    I am thinking of you and wishing you all the best for the New Year.

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    1. Dont be away too long as I love your blog, I like being called a gentle reader!

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  14. I am so glad that you decided to keep posting. I do love reading about your quiet life.

    God bless.

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  15. aw, don't feel bad about feeling down in the dumps in your previous post. I just felt sad for you :o/ But I'm glad your break has helped refresh and recharge, and oh, what a surprise, you've been a busy bee again! Honestly woman, you wear me out!

    Nice to see you back :O) x

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    1. I don't feel busy, after so many years of getting up at 6 and milking goats etc etc, laying in to half 7 or even 8 is a treat, I feel quite lazy now

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  16. You said it how it was for you, Sue. That's fine. I think it can help a lot to offload from time to time and goodness knows, you are usually so positive about things, it's not as if you make a habit of it. I reckon it was something you actually needed.
    Love
    J x

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  17. I would feel very uneasy about buying a second hand mattress.....brrrrrr. Glad to see things are picking up!

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    1. No No a second hand mattress would be so YUCK

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  18. So sorry to read of Colin's health problems. It is an area where there are new and better treatments - hopefully they will work out quickly what will work best for him.
    We used to live in Knodishall - a long time ago now - and have happy memories of buying eggs from your stall, and what went on to be our favourite potatoes Pink Fir Apples!

    For your shelving - if you use a stain blocking primer first, you should be able to go over that with any thing you like.

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    1. Lovely to hear from you, where in Knodishall were you? I think we only grew those potatoes once - a very poor crop.
      Thank you for the tip, we've got some stain block in the shed - I hope.

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    2. I painted a walnut-stained chest of drawers dark red. I used paint that already contained primer. After two coats, it became clear that it was going to take FOUR coats of paint. However, I liked the effect of the two coats...it looked like an antique colonial red. I was also able to reuse the antique brass drawer pulls, which would not have looked right with the red I was after. So, it all worked out. If you use a stain-blocking primer first, be sure to use at least two coats and get it as opaque as you can. Then use any good-quality latex paint. Unfortunately, that adds up to 4 coats of paint, any way you slice it. If you have the paint and don't mind the effort, it won't cost a lot. (I minded the effort, LOL). Welcome back, Sue. I look forward to your daily posts.

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  19. I was very happy when I clicked on your blog and there you were writing again and a fabulous post it is. Your blog is the first one I start reading and I enjoy hearing about your daily life, how you bike about and what you eat etc. I like that your side bar lists other blogs that you enjoy and then I do too.

    Illness is very difficult indeed. Having been well my entire life I was hit with dreadful BPPV out of the blue and for the last 2 years at various times can hardly walk without holding on to the wall etc. A few times I have felt very sorry for myself and shed a few tears of self pity. I know it could be worse. Prayer has helped me a great deal.

    Take care and best wishes to Colin for a full recovery.

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    1. So sorry to hear about that BPPV - sounds horrible, hope it goes away as quickly as it arrived. Thank you for your kind words

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  20. Glad to hear you're feeling more positive again. The trouble is that everything is up in the air with you at the moment, ie Col's health, your house move and wondering if you are moving to the right area etc, etc. It's bound to have some effect on your mood and the weather doesn't help either. Take care.

    Joan (Wales)

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    1. I hope with people back at work tomorrow we can start to get things organised.
      The weather is awful here tonight

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  21. Nice to see you back Sue and to read that you are feeling more upbeat.
    Apparently Chalk Paint will cover anything but it is quite expensive. I have seen a recipe somewhere though for making your own from grout powder and leftover emulsion paint. I'll see if I can find it again and leave the link here in your comments.

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  22. http://mortgagefreeinthree.com/2015/08/frugal-chalk-painting-for-furniture/

    There you go Sue. It's something I am going to try when I can get my piece of furniture outside on a dry day.

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    1. Thank you for that link. Col says we've got no grout in the workshop but we might have some stain covering paint left from when we had a water leak, hopefully one or the other will do the trick

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  23. So glad you are feeling a bit better Sue, we all get a bit down at times and you have nothing to apologise for.
    Well done on getting a few mundane tasks out of the way.
    I have got a whole lot of sorting and decluttering to get through, I think I had better make a list!

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    1. I have written a new list of jobs to do regarding the house sale and purchase so will get on with those tomorrow

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  24. So glad you're back blogging and feeling a little more upbeat. My uncle was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. One thing my aunt and uncle found when they started going for his treatments is that everyone with the same diagnosis has a different outcome, a different reaction to the treatment and a different outlook, support and attitude. I wouldn't tell you about any of his/their experiences because they could be the same or very different for you and Col. Stay positive and get lots of rest.

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    1. I think we will be happier when things get going - waiting is difficult

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  25. I was hoping just a little break would be all you needed. Glad to see you back and blogging again. Totally agree, waiting is the worst part of anything illness related but you both seem to be keeping yourselves busy. Looking forward to reading your daily writings again. xx

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    1. I wish I hadn't said anything about taking a break almost feels silly after just 4 days to be blogging again.

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    2. Nothing silly about it at all. After a couple of days I was desperate to get back to blogging. Writing is good for the soul. xx

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    3. Nothing silly about it at all. After a couple of days I was desperate to get back to blogging. Writing is good for the soul. xx

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  26. Moving house is so unsettling not to mention Colin's health problems. Be kind to yourself and don't beat yourself up for getting down from time to time. I know how you feel as we are surrounded by packing boxes having finally sold after 3, yes, that's 3 years. Still waiting to exchange and complete but it should be in the next couple of weeks. Mike has been here for 38 years but we need an easier life now we are both getting older and a the 11 acres is too much to manage on top of the garden. I am looking forward to freeing up some funds for travel and to a newish house in Worcestershire. Good luck with the move.

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    1. 3 Years - Oh My Goodness what a long wait, you must have been very nearly despondent.We hope to be moving mid March which is 10 months after putting the house up for sale.

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  27. Zinsser Cover Stain Primer at £12.99 per litre should do the job, my DH says. In our opinion, do not touch Annie Sloan paint-we had a very expensive experience with furniture and had to start again!! Sorry, had to write this bit first as DH was reading the paint name out to me.
    Glad you are back to blogging again-I too lead a very ordinary life where books and crafts are the joys of my retirement and I love every day of it. Christmas is tidied away, the jigsaw is done and back in the box and today I sat and made a list of all the craft projects for which I already have the materials and the order in which I hope to complete them.
    DH is now calling from the other room that Screwfix sells the paint which can be bought on the internet or from a store if there is one near you.
    Catriona

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  28. Pleased to see that you're back and posting again - I hope that everything with your hubby's health and your house move starts to come along nicely now that we're into the new year and all back to normal again - bank holidays can be a pain to get through when you're waiting for news xxx

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    1. Removal company coming to give a quote tomorrow, things are happening!

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  29. Glad to hear from you again! Chalk paint will cover anything - apparently - but it is expensive, might be cheaper to buy new shelves! Depends on how much you love the shelves I guess. Also, might be worth seeing if Col can take his pension early on ill health grounds, see if it will be reduced, by how much etc if at all. Worth a phone call perhaps. Should be able to take it from 55 onwards in any case - but might be reduced. Get advice, don't rely on me, but might be worth a check as I say. Sorry if that is all too much, hope you don't think I am sticking my nose in. I am sure that you are on top of it all in any case. Take care of yourself and never feel that you are moaning or complaining. We are here to listen and support and can only do that if you tell us you are down, so nothing wrong with that is there! Hope that you have a good week. Sending hugs and all good thoughts! xx

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    1. Thank you for the info,I don't love the shelves much! but as we have so many books anything will do for now. yes we wondered about the age 55 thing but as he will be 60 in march 2017 we have enough to see us through so will be OK.
      Thank you for the hugs - much appreciated.

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  30. Hubby says that if you sand the shelves back you can then prime and paint them ok. He works with wood so he should be right.

    Praying for Col and for you. You need to know what is happening and when. I know I find waiting the hardest.

    Pat in Norwich

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  31. Lovely to see a new post from you today. You have been jolly busy, it's the time of year for paper work sorting and shredding I find. Fingers crossed your new reading of the pension paperwork is correct, extra money always gratefully received!
    Lisa x

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    1. I ruined our shredder trying to make some bits to use in hampers a few years back! we just burn stuff now but may need a new shredder after we move -no fireplace there

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  32. I confess I was a little worried about you and Col! I am so glad that you are feeling brighter. Best wishes for 2016!

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    1. I was just a bit down due to not knowing what is happening but I'm sure we'll be OK - we've stuck together for 36 years so far!

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  33. So happy to see you are posting again! Welcome back! I am glad that it was only a short break. :)

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    1. So many comments made me feel better again - it is lovely to know people are caring out there in blogland

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  34. So lovely to see you blogging again.
    No need to apologise for your mood, you are open and honest and that is much appreciated by your readers.
    We are all with you on this journey and wishing you and Col the very best.
    Pam in TX.xx

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    1. Thank you, all the kind wishes make me feel better

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  35. Have just caught up with your last post and this one and I don't think there was anything self-pitying about your last post, you have had a lot to deal with over the last year with Colin's health and had to make big decisions about moving etc - you would have to be super-human not to express the strains and anxieties of all that. I am glad to see you feeling better and more positive and happy to keep on blogging. Whether you blog once a day, once a week or once a month I will be a regular reader. All best wishes.

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    1. Thank you, that's a lovely thing to hear

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  36. Hi--I don't think there was anything self pitying either. You are about to g o through a huge transition in your lifestyle, and your husband has a diagnosis which will change your life, I think you would not be human if you didn't have worries, concerns. I enjoy your blog. All good wishes for 2016-keep on blogging. Jean in Winnipeg

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    1. I do love writing so will keep going, thank you for your good wishes.

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  37. Welcombe back! Missed your posts down here in 'sunny' (that's a laugh!) South Devon!
    Yes, doing boring things in January is good! I like to sort things out before I start on spring cleaning. Even though we don't actually need to spring clean any longer - although those with coal fires or wood burners might still need to, as in days of old when it was essential after the grime of winter fires had left their mark everywhere - it's good to get things sorted first, the paperwork especially, changing entries in address books for those who have moved or are no longer with us, putting birthdays down on the computer calendar, sorting out the larder/fridge/freezer after Christmas, etc.
    I must assure you that reading about your quiet life is more enjoyable to me than reading about someone's transatlantic holiday or journey up the Amazon or whatever. As my dear pal Anne used to say, "Boring is good! Excitement is bad!" I'm inclined to agree with her!
    And finally, I had my diagnosis of breast cancer just two days before Christmas 2004. I took the treatment and well, I'm still here ...
    And I intend to be for a darned sight longer!
    It wasn't a good Christmas that year, but we got over it as we did my husband's open heart surgery. Been there, had the anxiety. You will win through!
    Margaret P

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  38. Welcome back to your brighter self Sue, why is it so difficult to get out of black clouds.... I still find it very difficult to climb back up, I have tried everything over the years. Life in Devon has been very wet with the river flooding the nearby fields. David made a quick dash to the field at the back of us ( our garden is on side of a hill with us at the bottom). He dug several trenches to divert the water away from us. I think it will take months for the garden to dry out. It was nice to see H &J over xmas but felt sorry for H as she battled the feeling og being sick. Take care both of you. Chris

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