Friday, 5 January 2018


Good morning lovely people, may I wish each and every one of you a very Happy New Year, 'tis Friday which means it is time for 

First up - is the snow day we got, it was very pretty and we didn't have anywhere to go particularly which pleased us immensely, it also treated me to my favourite noise, the sound of snow falling, it's the fact it reduces all the other noises to silence that I love so much. 

I had a lovely trudge through blogs the other day, sat with my card from Tink a bar of chocolate from a work colleague and the nicest frothy coffee from hubby's new coffee machine - it is sometimes the little things that we need to take note of. 

We knew we were going to have a quiet New Year, because lil sis who normally has a gathering had done 2 night shifts and then was on days on New Year's day, so there wasn't much chance of having a knees up.  Strangely enough she didn't have a gathering in 2016 either, maybe it was a forerunner to 2017.  So we decided that we'd have a barbecue (yes I know madness itself) and perhaps an outdoor fire and then maybe we'd sit around playing board games and drinking prosecco and then have some plant pot fireworks - well it was a plan, not necessarily a very good plan but it was a plan nonetheless. 

Now anyone in the UK may recall that New Year's Eve was a bit of a wash out and the evening wasn't much better, regardless of this, hubby still set up a makeshift barbecue outside (he decided against using the main barbecue for reasons that became apparent as the evening wore on - it absolutely bounced it down).  Initially he dealt with the rain using the summer parasol, but when even that wasn't helping, he just dragged the makeshift barbecue under the garden shelter and away he went, eventually though, he just handed the burgers back through the window and I finished them off in the pan, sometimes the best laid plans have to be altered to suit the conditions.

Here is crazy hubby at the window, headtorch and all!

We enjoyed the burgers, then played various versions of Monopoly (millionaire and empire versions), before playing Uno and before we knew it, I was sending hubby outside with a lump of coal, a piece of bread and a £1 coin to bring in the New Year through the main door (he let the old year out through the other door that we rarely use).  The chimes of Big Ben rung out (on the TV of course) and he headed in (eventually once he'd finished listening to the bells at the local church).  We sang a very short version of Auld Lang Syne, whilst said 17 year old looked on rather bemused, then we went to look at the gloriously clear night outside (bearing in mind the rain earlier in the evening).  Then we decided to have the plant pot firework party (plant pot due to the size of the garden and the quantity of wood decking versus the size of the fireworks - hubby had been warned no big fireworks!). 

And then after draining the last of the Prosecco we headed up to bed, we had actually had a really rather lovely night!  We got some fab messages from lil bro and said niece and sister woke with the fireworks and wished us a happy New Year as did Mum who had gone to bed early as poorly but was adamant that she would see the new year in, she said she was worried that if she didn't see it in she might not see it out - she got a right royal telling off for that I can tell you).  

Next up Christmas pudding number two, I was very naughty and made a second Christmas pudding this year which needed to be used up, so it got flamed and eaten over several days and was nom.

There was also a chocolate pudding left that needed eating, I mentioned it to said 17 year old, he told me not a problem, I did not expect him to eat it in one sitting - sigh!

On Tuesday as part of my - we really must do something earlier in the year - routine for 2018 and because lil sis was having a day off and because said 17 year old didn't fancy a return visit, me hubby and lil sis went to Chatsworth 

We started as we meant to go on - cake and tea for breakfast - that's how we roll - literally at the moment, I've seen a picture of a seal making its way down to the sea front on Facebook this week and I recognise the movements - really need to sort that out too this year! 

We had a lovely leisurely walk about, I don't know whether it was because a lot of people were back at work, or that many thought it was too late or because it was a rather rainy day, but the house was virtually empty which was bliss.  

I got to admire the Lucy Loveheart illustrations that had been done to compliment the theme at the house this year (Dickens)

I got to have a look at all the houses that Su Blackwell (a local Sheffield artist) had done for the house, I loved this Christmas Carol version

I got to look at my favourite decoration again 

And managed a far better shot of the 'Christmas tree' in Fagin's den, they were playing tracks from Oliver which kept us singing away after we'd left the room, there is something about the track 'consider yourself...' that really sets the brain off isn't there (now it's it your brain isn't it - sorry - I hope it doesn't last all day). 

We discovered this fabulous felted decoration which we hadn't seen the other day, the level of detail were fantastic!

My sister had to point out what this was, we'd seen it the other day and just didn't 'get it' - yes I know it's obvious now but it wasn't the other day 

Don't get it? 

Favourite Scrooge expression?


"Bah humbug!"

The library is one of my favourite places, you can only see into it and the room is always cool, but it is such a beautiful room the day we visited there was someone playing the piano

The dining room was much quieter so I got a better shot of the table

I loved the cobwebby wedding decorations on the backs of the chairs.

The gorgeous chandelier against that stunning ceiling (why is it that chandeliers always brings the Always Fools and Horses scene to mind).

The final room was framed by twin trees that we didn't spot the other day (because they were behind us).

We headed outside where it was still raining, so we grabbed a cuppa and a bite to eat and then the rain stopped, so we managed a wander, we even got up to the grotto garden and had a good walk to blow off those cobwebs

I've set myself a resolution of arting every day, here is a semi circular book I'm currently working on, I received the book in my crafty advent calendar, I've dismantled it and gessoed each and every page and the covers, some in black gesso and others in white gesso, which give a very different finish when you add acrylic paint.  I'm not sure of the end goal for the book but I've enjoyed playing with the book nonetheless and yes I will put it back together once I've finished it (I can't cope with not getting the paint to the edges which is why it had to be dismantled).

I've also been working on some Christmas cards, although at the moment I can't make out whether they can be identified as Christmas cards if I'm honest.  I've used some fabulous Tracy Scott stamps over gelli plated backgrounds.

I've started to add white highlights, oil pastels and some glitter - because glitter obviously makes these Christmassy! 

Other positives from the week, having some time away from work (although I did do one day's work it should only have been a couple of hours, but turned into 5 - whoops). 

Also the hospital being uber efficient when I went for a mammogram on Wednesday, due to family history I have to go every year from the age of 40 for a mammogram, we were in the hospital, cup of tea, mammogram done back in car and away in less than 30 minutes and the lovely lady who took me through was great, far better (and far less grumpy) than the one I had last year. 

Having a slow take down of decorations, we took two trees down yesterday and the stair garland and window lights and have the two main trees and the outside decorations to sort today and then it's back to normal (whatever that is).  The house looks rather bare now it has to be said, but it is also nice to have a good clean through as well. 

Blindspot on TV, we've officially caught up (which now makes me grumpy as there are no new scheduled episodes for us currently), but it has been well worth a watch, and that my lovely people is this weeks rocking moments. 

I hope you've had a beautiful and blessed week and are looking forward to embracing the New Year.

If you fancy joining in, then pop a post together and come back and link up so we can come and visit and leave me a comment so I know you've posted.  In fact anyone can leave a message even if you are just passing by.  Until next week...


  1. You have been so busy Virginia, especially compared with my 'do nothing' week! I had forgotten that NYE fell into this week too, but I really only dozed on and off all evening, though I did sit up and enjoy the Spanish celebrations at our midnight, and the London fireworks at 1am.
    You have some lovely photos of your Chatsworth visit. It does look a very interesting place.
    I love the idea of 'Arting' very day, but I know I would never manage to stick with that. But I am hoping that when I can shake off this cough, I will find my mojo again, and get some card made and scrapbooking done. Kate x

  2. Dear Virginia, Happy New Year and all the very best to you & the family for 2018.
    I decided this year that the PC would stay off during the holidays so I am now on a big catch-up before returning to work on the 8th. Your posts over the Christmas period are filled with fabulous photos and wonderful family moments - thank you for sharing.
    My run up to Christmas was rather hectic and most of the time I forgot to take photos before wrapping & despatching the items that I made - will need to try harder next Christmas LOL
    Wishing you well.
    Toni xx

  3. Happy New Year to you and the family - loving the extra photos from Chatsworth. Still my dream to go one day..