Birthdays and bears

Well, that's been a bit of a hefty blog break. Busy times. Sometime last month I had a birthday, and as some people may know, I am not a huge fan of birthdays. But there was a beautiful card from Joe, who also ordered a fabulous Clangers cake - and they spelled my name correctly, which is always nice! Yes, I adore the Clangers.


He bought me far too many presents, including some CDs of my favourite noisy bands, and a colouring book...which sadly I have not had time to play with yet.

Although I have made time to get on with my own painting.

Last weekend was my two day trip to Oxford, where I held my bear making workshop in the Willows, at Hill End Nature Centre, a truly delightful work space with lots of light and room.

I had nine attendees, four of whom were returns from previous workshops and it was lovely to see them again. It was a very busy, friendly session, and if you want an outside view, there is a lovely blog post about it on 'Tales from the Weekday Home'.

It is always nice to get to the end of the day and see the more-or-less finished results.

Apart from that, we have been trying to straighten things out at the cottage. I am still only half unpacked since moving in three and a half years ago.  It was all a bit too much with everything that happened subsequently, and I've been quite happy or rather, resigned, to live like this. But things are changing and this dumping room needed sorting. 

It's actually tidy compared to how it was. We've gone through boxes and boxes of stuff, put various things into lots for auction, charity and attic storage. Sometimes it was particularly painful, but it had to be done as life is starting to settle down and there is a lot more which needs sorting out. One can only live in carnage for so long.



Soozcat said...

One of the many things I love about your blog is the attention to visual detail. The sorted and stacked "dumping room" featuring a small, graceful white teapot atop the bookshelf, the Clangers cake and the wonderful pop-up card, and all the little details of the bears from your most recent workshop -- they're all signs of someone who has a knack for choosing the details that matter.

Sorry, though, to hear of your having to go through that sorting. It is much like walking back through the minefield that is grief, realizing there are still unexploded mines beneath one's feet. I'm pretty sure my mother still has a box or two of my dad's stuff and her parents' papers in her basement; she's never had the heart to sort through it all.

Hugs to you and Joe.

Lynda (Granny K) said...

What a wonderful, wonderful Clangers Cake! Long may you and Joe continue to give each other strength.

rossichka said...

There's time for everything! Life will show you the correct time for unpacking and rearranging the new space.:)
I find all the bears charming and am amazed at how you succeed to achieve such good and quick results with your pupils! This means that you have the gift to inspire and explain!:)
Happy belated Birthday, Gretel! May joy and love fill up your days!xx

Deb said...

Ooooh I understand the need to "sort", having moved in with Himself nearly 3 years ago. Putting two homes together took us time, frustration, gin and lots of de-cluttering. I reckon we'll be done in another 3 years :) After the workshop inspiration I'm working on the dachshund from the book. I'm sure he'll appear on the blog soon, speaking of which, thanks for the mention! Take care x

Lin said...

Well, happy birthday then. The cake is adorable--although I don't know what a Clanger is. I shall look that up.

I'm glad that you are at a place of tackling the stacks. I think it speaks volumes of where you are these days. It's very hard to address the collections of things we have for the emotions and feelings that are attached to the "things." Cleaning and clearing your house...and your heart and mind.

Thinking of you as you de-clutter...

Kim said...

Happy Birthday! And I love seeing pictures of your house, it is a wonderful cottage! Congrats on all, yours is one of only a few blogs I check these days. Always love to see what you are up to :)