Here’s to getting it right this time, and making it ABUNDANTLY clear what’s going on. It’s not YOU, I’m almost 99%definitely sure. It’s ME! I somehow miscommunicated the
simple incredibly easy blindingly obvious COMPETITION TO MAKE A NEW TToT BUTTON.
Allow me to try again: in light of the fact that we are now beyond 100 weeks, and have had the same (pretty, not tired-at-all) banner for each of those 100…I want YOU to make (and decide) a new one for us. Make a button (use the current b/g if you want) and then upload it into the linkie RIGHT HERE. Then come back during next weekend’s TToT and vote for your three favourites.
I do hope this VERYSTREMELYOBVIOUS share garners a leeeeettle more attention this time around 😉
Onward to my Ten, and this week, a photo collection inspired by Piper (who said she was inspired by me, so really I’m either self-inspired or utterly uncertain about what I’m doing) who nominated me to share my ’10-in-a-box’ – ten of the things in my house which make me happy or hold some significance for me. At the end I’ll nominate a couple of people and they nominate others and so on, and then we all get to have a bit of a nosey inside each others’ houses and learn a bit about what matters to us all. It’s a lovely idea.
No further ado to get adone, and HERE I GOOOOO!
Starting at the VERY beginning, like, pre-birth, one of my great aunties on my Dad’s side crocheted this blankie for me. There are pictures of baby-me snuggled under it in my pram, and it was my comfort every night once I got old enough to become properly attached to it. I used to sleep with my fingers curled into it as I dropped off, and it came on every holiday as an integral part of my packing. Then I grew up (a bit) and it has since lived in boxes and chests of drawers in various bedrooms, but never far away. It *may* have found its way back into my bed in recent weeks…
I collected things as a kid – pencils, keychains, coins, bits of broken pottery I dug out of the vegetable patch…and marbles. I used to try to find a new marble everywhere I went. They are beautiful, shinybright, sensual, aesthetically pleasing blobs of loveliness, and all of them were grist to my mill. I liked to hold them to the light and see the world turned to bright distortion through different hues of glass. I liked to feel the bumps and runches of the volcanoes and the chinas; the sumptuous size of the grandfathers and grandmothers; the vivid colour of the cat’s eyes and pearlies; and the surprising weight and shine of the steelies. They are my happy thoughts and remind me of simpler times. And they’re pretty.
Five years into our friendship, Soulie and I celebrated The Big 21 – Turning Into Adults!!! Even then we knew we would be little olds together, whatever the rest of life may bring. The poem is already rendered obsolete by my lack of children and his realisation that he would be a little old man, not a little old lady, but the rest stands. We will certainly grow old disgracefully, and try to enjoy the most and best of life that we can, and still be friends.
An absolute ESSENTIAL of my family – Scrabble has been played by Mum, WonderAunty and my dear Grandad, since fuh-EVAH, and if I don’t get my fix once a week, I begin to get itchy for tiles. I’ve slowly risen up the ranks and can now hold my own against Mum. WonderAunty can beat me hollow, and even she couldn’t often beat my Grandad. The tradition lives on, and I hope always will – the Scrabble board is where we gather, we chat…and sometimes play on our phone whilst our opponent takes a RIDONKULOUSLY long time to make their play.
Ancient Chinese Proverb says “Sometimes people die”, and sometimes they’re people you love very much and who taught you a lot about *twinklysparkliness* and Being Evacuated and Cheating At Races and Cycling From London To Brighton and Being A Fireman and Getting Sung To Sleep and just, in general, being knowledgeable and kind and completelydamnfantastic. Sometimes those people die, and it’s sad. Sometimes those people die and they leave a hole ripped into the fabric of the family which never gets filled, but eventually gets tapestried over with new threads each time the someone is brought into conversation or remembered fondly, or one of their stories is re-told, or a song re-sung. Sometimes you sit in the dark and the quiet, one hand on each nearly-sleeping form of Niece and Neff, softly lullabying them with tunes you learned from one of the most profound influences of your world – a man you knew as ‘Dandan’ even when he dressed up as Santa – a man you will treasure forever, for having known.
He was a wise old bird, my Grandad – our Lovely Lenny Blue-Eyes.
This guy’s tiny. And probably worthless, except I found him one day in an antique shop and absolutely fell in love with him. I’ve always loved frogs and would spend endless summer hours on my belly by the pond, watching them, plunging my arms into the weed-strewn murk to try to catch them, holding tadpoles and rescuing the silly froglets who got stuck to hot rocks in the sun. I love their little damp skins and their wide smiles. I love their golden eyes and their hoppityness. I love how the surface of the water presses upwards over their snub noses, as they warily eye the surface for marauding herons (or children – whatevs). I love that they stick out their tongues to eat, and they sometimes sit and stare at you, nestled in the warmth of your waterlogged palm, until you make an incautious move and they fling themselves away, landing with a PLOP! ready to be caught again.
He also reminds me of #KissingTheFrog, which (if you missed it) is a highly recommended passtime, and I recommend you try it with someone really skilled, like Sandy (though quite frankly she’d spoil you for anyone else because she’s so-oooo-OOOOooo good at it)
This delectable glasslet came from a gorgeous weekend away celebrating WonderAunty’s [significant not telling you which one] birthday at a GORRGEOUS posh hotel, where we ate sumptuous food and had long, beachy walks, and just enjoyed BEING together. It was also the first time I got drunk on champagne, which might have something to do with it, but mostly it’s cos WonderAunty and how incredibly awesome she is.
Okay, so I’m being slightly loose with the rules (when has that fazed me before? Pfft! I laugh in the face of rules!) and posting my BOOKSHELF. Because books. And shelves. And shelves full of books. And most especially shelves full of books in my home. BUT the shelves also hold school pics of Niece and Neff, and they’re next to (also too big for a box) my AMAZING PAINTING I got in Cornwall, shortly after receiving enough inheritance money to buy it, once I’d fallen in love with it and found that leaving it behind in the gallery made me Very Sad, and the thought of someone else taking it away made me a bit angry. Sometimes people die and then they leave you a way by which you can remember them always, and the light and colour they brought to your life.
Sometimes in a lifetime, if you’re lucky, you get to meet someone (even if you don’t quite ‘meet’ them at first (until September, anyways)) and you discover that for whatever reason and however it happens, you fall quite hopelessly in friends, and if you’re super, SUPER lucky, they fall back. Sometimes that person might gradually become someone you trust (especially if you’re given to loving too fast and trusting too slow) and at various points they might send you Deep and Meaningful things, which let you know about Real and Proper.
I spent so much of my life without friends, that when they happen for keeps, it’s a stilling and wonderful thing. I am lucky, because I have such wonderful people in my life who I get to keep.
GOOD books. Like, books I would have on my bookshelves regardless, but I KNOW THE AUTHORS. And that is a shiver of utter delight every time I think of it.
The other delightful thing is that most of these ^^^ are signed copies JUST FOR ME.
Oh, layer upon layer of book-nerd-ecstacy! I love that these In Real books are holdable, smellable, flick-through-the-pagesable…I adore the very essence of their bookish nature. They make me very happy indeed.
SO…who to nominate!
And as for YOU – get your thankful going, and your buttons making, and have a great weekend.