My head seems to whirr and spin at present but I think I am almost prepared, almost.
I suspect many of us may be crossing our fingers for the arrival of postal deliveries at the moment. There is a promise of more snow ahead and I really want to be able to sit back and enjoy it with accompanying mugs of cocoa and gingerbread biscuits rather than dragging reluctant children around overheated shops filled with bad tempered shoppers.
My head is filled with optimistic hopes for a week of very relaxed seasonal baking, happy children making paper chains and clothes peg dolls. Yes, I realise the reality may be children screaming at each other over bits of ripped up paper and a great deal of kitchen panic but I feel certain that if I imbibe in enough seasonal spirit of the alcoholic variety I may just manage to create the scene through holly tinted glasses.
I have been making these brooches for Teacher's presents and like the fabric combination so much that I have decided to add them to my Not on the High Street shop and to Etsy.
a gift perhaps
Thank you so much for all your kind words and good wishes, I am pretty much back on my feet and whilst perhaps not quite firing on all cylinders certainly firing on most of them.
Now I sincerely hope you are all well ahead with your shopping and super organised but just in case there is someone you are struggling with or perhaps you feel the need to gift yourself a little something, you know, just to help keep sane (I find this happens to me a lot...)
I thought I would share one of my very favourite things of late. I posted previously about the wonderful Postcards From Penguin: 100 Book Jackets in One Box and once again I have the lovely Cornflower to thank for putting this offering from Puffin under my nose.
Postcards from Puffin: 100 Book Covers in One Box are just as wonderful as the Penguin set, beautifully printed cards, charmingly presented.
Just flicking through the Puffin cards brings so many forgotten childhood stories back into memory and the children and I have spent a great deal of time pouring over them, making lists of things we would like to read and exclaiming over the titles we recognise.
The Puffin cards are proving an excellent way to encourage my children to complete thank you notes. They love searching the box for just the right subject for the intended recipient and anything that makes them eager to write thank you notes gets my vote!
The other big advantage of these beautiful cards is that now I find myself with around 200 postcards, surely enough to allay my fears of running out and allow me to finally use with abandon. Surely?
The cold that has been nudging me for a week or more finally came out on top. And with such a shout.
I would swear blind that this is my worst cold ever but then I am pretty sure I said that about last year's cold. My nose runs continually when not blocked and I shiver and ache.
I have given in, you know you are really ill when you put a hat on your head to walk to the school bus stop at 8am and find you are quite unable to even contemplate removing that cosy, nursing hat when indoors, even hours later.
It's OK though, I am going to roll with it. The cushions are plumped and inviting and there is a blanket with my name on it. I have a fresh box of tissues.
I have a good book or two should my eyes refuse to close.
My feet are warm in knitted socks (Colinette Jitterbug, in case you were wondering).
And I have good company. One who oozes sincere sympathy and joins me on the sofa in order to willingly play the part of a hot-water bottle.
And another who still feels a hat on the head signifies a brisk hike to the woods at any point but will resign himself to a light chair nap if I really insist.
The thing to do
When there are icicles hanging from the wisteria and only mad dogs might choose to venture out of doors.
I find it's best to bake something comforting, Norwegian cinnamon buns, in case you were wondering.
Turn on the lamps, bring out the blankets
and be glad that work is of the indoor variety.
Will have to get to the post office at some point though.
I wonder if the mad dog might be trained to carry parcels?
Several people have asked about the lanterns in the previous post. They came from Cox & Cox , a really lovely company with a website just chock-a-block full of pretty things to brighten your world.