Life did an about turn recently. A couple of weeks ago I was just finishing my mornings class when my phone rang. It was my mum's friend calling to tell me not to worry, but mum was in an ambulance heading to hospital. She had had serious chest pains and nearly passed out. This same friend was with her when dad died and had called me to come quickly. I felt calm when she called, but sick in the pit of my stomach. Luckily my man was teaching there that day too, so we both headed off. Fortunately no heart attack was detected, but mum stayed in overnight as her blood pressure was too low. I took the next day off and mum stayed with us. She only had a week to go before her angioplasty op so we told her to stay off work and not overdo it. For once she listened (she's stubborn).
The night before the operation was the girls school carol service in the Cathedral. It was a beautiful candlelit service with the various school choirs singing throughout. Afterwards I stayed the night with mum and took her to hospital the next day. I only realised how worried she was when she made sure I understood her final wishes and had promised to carry them out. I'd seen it as a fairly routine procedure, but afterwards a friend told me of her friend who had had a massive heart attack after hers.
I was left feeling exhausted by it all and so blogging just fell by the wayside. I feel a bit out of the loop with it at the moment as I've not read any blog posts either. Today I just felt like stepping back in, so we'll see how it goes.
Around all the emotional hoo ha, I've been feeling pretty calm with the Christmas stuff. The girls broke up last Friday so we got our tree at the weekend. Grandma then stayed all weekend after she came out of hospital, which the girls loved.
Lately I've finished one major knitting thing which completely took me over for two weeks. Now I've got this jewel bright Rowan tweed yarn on my needles to knit me a christmas hat. Once done I'll be embroidering knots and flowers over it. It's a joy to knit with, I just need to plan some yarny thing for after christmas knitting cosied up with the choccie tin.
My big knitting thing was this beautiful textured shawl that I saw on Harmonie and Rosie. I used up some Rowan Cocoon I had so it's extra thick and snuggly soft. I fancied making it for me, but as I went along I decided my mum would like it more. No decent shots of me modelling it I'm afraid as they were all blurry. Just a snoozing Lily cat and a sofa to give you the general idea.
Other makes have been the secret kind that happen when girls are in bed and some Santa stockings for classmates. Each class has a secret Santa and the girls asked me to make something special to put their gifts in. In my head I fancied bright fabrics, but the lazy me wanted something I could sit by the fire and sew so the felt came out.
Other quick makes have been inspired by a picture in this months Country Living. Jam jars, rock salt, a bit of ribbon and three pretty night lights were ready to sparkle.
I took advantage of an offer and grabbed new toadie plates for christmas too.
Next in my head is an idea to make a shawl from this tartan I bought years ago to make a dress. I also love the feathery crown which has got me thinking. Usually we make crowns for Epiphany, but Christmas crowns would be ideal.
Around the time my mum went into hospital we had someone new come to live with us.
Let me introduce you to the lovely Marmalade Monkey.
I first saw Marmalade on Ellie's IG feed. She was posting different lovelies for sale and when I saw a pink monkey I was smitten. Others asked if they could buy him, but luckily I was first to ask. Poor Marmalade is missing a hand and foot at the moment and so limb surgery is booked for after christmas.
Ellie also really kindly popped in a couple of lavender pillows for Miss Rosey and Little Bun. An Alfie Blue look alike and a lamb are spot on and very loved.
Now as I write this a cooker mending man has just finished with my broken oven and it looks like we'll be back to making more yummy things again. These Peanut and Choc cookies from the Hummingbird Bakery book were very scrumptious indeed.
Now I'm off to watch films, do some felty sewing and eat sweets with my lovely girls. Later on we're meeting friends for pizza. Can't be bad can it.