Saturday 28 August 2021

A busy few days

Wow! This past week has flown by!
 It always goes like this. You think you have loads of the school holidays left, then suddenly feels like you have no time at all, plus a long list of jobs to do!

I worked the Sunday and Monday and had Tuesday off to go to Cornwall. 

I needed to go! To go and be close to Granny. To collect my thoughts, visit some places I feel connected to her, go back to where she once lived. I'm not going to lie, her death although expected, has really hit me hard. I think it's because I feel cheated out of a proper goodbye, so just being close to where she lived and where so many memories where made, helped.

The Pepperpot.

Her old bungalow - Atlantic View
My Granny sold her two bedroom bungalow back in 2006, when my grandpa died. It's since been knocked down and a huge concrete block built in its place. In March this year it sold for 1.7million!!! To us it was just 'granny's', the granny by the sea! It was no big deal, we knew no different but it was in the most amazing spot, perched on the cliff top with views out across the Atlantic. All our holidays were spent there, a week with Granny and Papa by the sea, then a week with our other Granny who lived a few miles inland, where my mum and dad now live. For me, that's where most of my memories lie and I just felt I had to go back there. Whilst on the roadside looking at the new house, a passing lady said she remembered my Granny's old bungalow and her. This made me happy.

Sophie and Jeff flying a kite in her old garden.

 I then went on to her bungalow to meet my mum and dad, sort through a few things, take a few photos, again soak up the place before it's no longer there to visit.

My dad, understandably needs to sort out all my Granny's things, so was very much 'what do you want? Have it, take it' I didn't want much - I asked for the driftwood piece of her old bungalow and the Pepperpot, which I commissioned Kirsty Elson to make for her 90th birthday. There were some videos of the children and we ended up with the video player too, to play them on and got persuaded to take the TV!! A bread knife for Sam to take to Uni!! A little wooden blackbird I'd given her one year.... To be fair over the past few years if you mentioned you liked anything, the next time you saw her she gave you it. 

 An emotional day x

I need a good de-clutter at home though, not more stuff!! 

Anyway back home and the garden is feeling very generous.....

....crumble time!!

Sophie celebrated her last day in the 'office' on Thursday!!! Not the year she'd hoped for but she's done it!! Sadly the year in Cardiff didn't happen, not even for six months but she did get to visit the ONS one day and met her Manager and has been up to Cardiff a few times for a meal with some of the other placement students. I get my room back now, no creeping through in case she's in a meeting. 
Well done Sophie, super proud of you, time to go back to Reading and enjoy your final year xx

I think going to Granny's and seeing all her stuff, has made me desperate to give the house a good clear out. In fact when the children go to Uni, I'm going to have a good sort out. We've made a start. Jeff has been sorting out his study, I tackled the utility cupboard and shelves the other day and made a start in the kitchen. I think once they've gone and the house is empty, I'm going to tackle one room at a time. I just need to be patient, as currently there is a growing pile of Sam's Uni stuff at the bottom of our bed and Sophie is about to 'find' all her Uni stuff and give it all a wash and a good sort out.

We've given the garden a good tidy up and I've the blister to prove it!!Jeff's washed the gutters, architraves, windows across the back of the house. I've been and bought loads and loads of bulbs to plant out in the new planters across the front of the house and Jeff's ordered some new Allium bulbs, as this years effort was very poor.

so, my last day off today (Saturday) and Sophie and I headed over to Thurloxton Farm for their annual Pick Your Own Sunflowers this morning. We went for the first time last year and thought she'd miss out this year being back at Uni but it's on earlier, so worked out well. She's just got her 'Moving In date' this afternoon, so just a couple more weeks at home. It's been lovely having her here but I think we're both ready for her to head back to Reading. She's been back 18 months now and desperate to be independent again, spend time with her friends.

How happy am I?


Can you spot her??

It's a lovely thing to do. There weren't as many this year and they were shorter - a different type or down to the weather? Who knows but you pay £5 per person and collect 6 stems each, so very reasonable and a lovely way to spend an hour or so..

Our selection.

The perfect addition to every room!!

So it's back to work for me tomorrow and Bank Holiday Monday. Plinth change on Tuesday and Jeff goes back to work too. A few days of prep, meetings, INSET etc One down, two to go!! Sophie goes back to Reading, week beginning the 13th and Sam to Cardiff the following week. Sophie and I are supposed to be going to Brighton for a couple of days, a hang over from last year, our belated birthday treat to each other but there's still no date for Granny's funeral as yet, so everything is still up in the air. I'm such a planner, like to know when, where and what I'm doing, so it's been difficult not knowing and for me to finally close that chapter. 
Patience xx

Saturday 21 August 2021

The rest of the week...

Well on our way through August and not much sunshine to shout out about, 

in fact it's been a pretty rubbish summer and this image pretty much sums it up!

Somehow my fig tree has thrived, a mix of rain and the occasional bit of sunshine, 
has seen it double in size...

...and it's laden with fruit....

...just waiting to ripen!

Five delicious, jammy, figs so far!

I'm the only one who really eats them, so one happy girl right here!

I worked the Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and left as the window man arrived. Finally, after five years of waiting, Jeff and Sam have new windows. We ran out of money whilst doing the extension and agreed before we started not to go into debt, just do things as we could afford to do so. So we can now afford to do it, just as Sam heads off for Uni!!

 I also decided to treat myself to some new walking boots. Mine were no longer waterproof and I was fed up coming home with socks you could ring out, so a new pair were needed. It's not like they won't get used!!

As I walked on Thursday with Lynn....

....and on Friday with Jeff.

He patiently waits, whilst I take copious amounts of photographs.

We went to the woods to see if we could spot any fungi. I'm not sure when the season really starts but was very late last year, only really discovering them in mid/late October. So I'm starting early this year.

So I don't miss out!!

Of course we also had the sad news of my Granny's passing this week, which I shared with you in a previous post. I'm going to miss her terribly and feel very sad that I'll never see her again but am glad she's now at peace xxx

Friday 20 August 2021

Farewell Granny xx

It is with huge sadness that I come on here to share with you the news of my Granny's passing. 
She died peacefully yesterday evening, Thursday 19th August 2021

She'd not been well and has been between care homes and hospital since April, after falling and breaking her wrist. She has been unconscious for the past two weeks, before slipping away peacefully last night x

I feel very sad that I've been unable to spend much time with her over the past 18 months due to Covid. This square of nine photo's represents the limited times I have been able to spend with her. I wish I could have hugged her, held her hand, kissed her cheek but it wasn't to be BUT I have plenty of wonderful memories to hold dear.

This was the last time we were able to be close to her as a family of four.
Christmas 2019

And this was the last time my sister and I visited her 'maskless' in the January of 2020.

This was the first time we were able to visit after lockdown, 
on my dad's birthday, June 2020

And on her 97th birthday
July 2020

My sister and I popped down in the October

And the three of us after the November lockdown, an early Christmas present!

Since then I've had 3 facetime calls with her, one on Christmas day, then whilst in hospital and on her 98th birthday. I used to phone her every single day, just so she had someone to talk to and I will miss just hearing her voice, talking about the weather and her proudly asking about what Sophie and Sam were up to.

The last time I saw her, still unable to physically be with her, was at the end of July
 through a care home window

But when she realised it was us, this was the smile that greeted us 
and this will be my final memory of her. 

Sam could never do any wrong - the Golden boy!!

She was immensely proud of these two....

....these 3!
Her Great Grandchildren.

 I had her 100 year Birthday card bought and ready, convinced she'd make it to the big day! 
I'll keep it and will celebrate in thought xx

We love you Granny and will miss you terribly.

Rest in peace xx