I am So! Excited!! We were talking last week about taking a holiday later this year, and decided that what we most wanted to do was to go over and visit Tony’s sister & family, who live in Missouri.

“And let’s spend a couple of days in New York on our way through,” I said.

“Let’s do it in October,” I said.

Then the cogs started turning. New York….. October……. RHINEBECK!!!!!!

Yes, we’re going to be at Rhinebeck!! Not in a showing capacity, since that would entail an awful lot more organisation than my lazy butt can manage, but definitely in a buying capacity. Oho yes. I intend taking an empty suitcase with me, just for Rhinebeck purchases.

But more exciting than that is the prospect of meeting up with some of my beloved online friends, who I never thought I’d ever meet with in real life. We’ll have ourselves a little Posh meet-up, shall we? So, who’s going to be there?

I am! I am!!

Wedding Day

Fourteen years ago today. Fourteen long years, with many beautiful days, many difficult days, many days of tenderness and comfort and harmony.

Fourteen years ago today, I was waking up on my wedding day. I was eighteen, very young, and my wedding dress had had to be taken in by hand because my waist was so tiny.

I wasn’t a bit nervous, not a bit, and I couldn’t understand why everyone kept asking me if I was. Why would I be nervous? How could I feel anything but joy? I remember how calm I was, in the whirling storm of everyone else’s rushing and arranging.

I remember my father, standing on the hem of my dress as we entered the hall, and me turning and snapping at him. I’m sorry for that now. I never snapped at my daddy, so perhaps I was a little nervous just then.

I remember him crying during the ceremony, and Tony crying a little too, and how embarrassed I was, and how hard I willed them to dry up and be calm.

I remember the photographs, how cold and foggy it was, how everyone shivered during the outdoors photographs, and how warm I felt, even in my sleeveless dress. I remember how easy it was to smile for the cameras, no matter how long it took, nor how many photos they snapped, because I was so happy.

I remember the food at the reception, how good it was, how much everyone enjoyed themselves, and how hungry we were because we were too busy talking to everyone to eat anything ourselves.

I remember the quiet later, when we’d left the reception and were on our own for the first moment that day. I remember every single minute, every single second.

Fourteen precious years. Not a moment too long, my love.

September 24th, 2007

Come Monday mornings, I often think of those of you who are working in offices and other workplaces. I’m always very busy on a Monday (particularly after a sale as big as last night’s…..phew!), but it’s a very different kind of busy. I can, and usually do, stay in my pj’s all day. I can do a lot of my tasks – invoicing, updating the website, sorting out address labels – propped up in bed, thanks to a laptop. I can stop for coffee and cake whenever I fancy. And if I want to have an afternoon nap and catch up later in the evening, that’s ok too (not that I’d do that, oh no…..). This is the beauty of working from home, of being your own boss.

So I always feel sorry for those of you struggling back to work after the weekend. Stressful meetings, an overflowing inbox, too many calls to return. Poor you. Don’t you think it’s about time you took a coffee break? I think so too. Make yourself a drink, think about knitting, and chill……..

For the especially stressed, try some soothing herbal tea. Breathe in that aroma, warm your hands around the cup, and let nature calm your body down.

September 18th, 2007

Oh boy, I have been having so much fun. I think I laughed more in the last five days than I have in the whole of this year. I know you can’t choose your family, but if I could, I’d still want these guys for mine. They’re sweet and kind hearted and thoughtful, and So Much Fun!!! It was just what I needed, a break from life, routine, and work, and instead, a few days of wandering around Pembrokeshire, doing very little except talk, laugh, eat, and drink.   

But despite all that, I’m feeling navy blue today. We only get to see them every couple of years, and that sucks with a capital S, because we have such a fabulous time when we’re together. So, cheer me up. Tell me what you’ve been up to while we’ve been playing hookey. And tell me how much you missed me…….  

Keeping it in the Family…….

Did I ever tell you about my granma? She was 98 when she died, a few years ago. In the last few years of her life she went blind, but until that point she was very active.

She was a great knitter – not technically great, but very, very productive. When I was little, she used to knit clothes for me – cardigans, sweaters, and much dreaded vests (for my US readers, I don’t mean waistcoats, I mean underwear). She knitted them to last, so they always came down to my knees, and they were made from the scratchiest yarn, which very often changed colour halfway down the vest, where she had run out of yarn and started with another batch.

Thankfully, my mother never made me wear the vests.

Granma was very, very frugal. She did things with her weekly bath water that would make your hair stand on end, and her drawers were full of bits of string, old envelopes, and saggy rubber bands. So she never wasted a scrap of yarn, and her knits were always patchworks of different colours and textures.

Later in life, her favourite knitting project was slippers. She made them for everyone in the family, and for very favoured friends. They were garter stitch boats, with old carpet insoles. The tops had a drawstring, so you put them on like bags, tied the drawstring tight, and hoped for the best. They were warm and cosy, but lethal on polished floors and stairs.

I took up knitting after Granma died, which is a real shame. I like to think that we would have sat and knitted together, and she would have told me about the dashing costumes she had made herself when she was a girl in the 20’s. I think she would have been proud of my knitting, and delighted that a new generation was taking up sticks.

But she would have been horrified if she’d known how much I spend on yarn. £18 for enough cashmere to knit a pair of socks? Scandalous.

Never mind, Granma, I always save the little bits that are leftover. Even if I haven’t got a clue what to do with them.

(The photos are sneak peeks of this week’s sock yarn. Including the return – hurrah! – of Lucia. More peeks tomorrow.)