Monday, 4 January 2016

And here we are, 2016!


Happy New Year to you all!

And here we are back to work/school etc. 
Although there is a distinctive holiday mood still lingering in our house as both sons are
still at home from University, albeit that we hardly see them, except when they need food,
as one has 3 assignments to finish and one is revising for exams. 
Compared to some universities, term (or semester) is late starting, but then they did 
finish late, on 18th December. 

 (I spotted this primrose in the front garden when I was taking down the fairy 
lights on Sunday morning) 

As with others, I do not make new year resolutions but I do like to take stock of 
the past and forthcoming years. 2015 was a pretty stressful year for various reasons but 
much of that is in the past now. Reports have been written, submitted and in some cases 
published and working hours reduced temporarily at least. 

I blogged a couple of months ago about how life is changing here as children develop and grow into independent adults. I do feel it is time for a change - we have been doing the childcare/work/family thing for almost 22 years (in 16 days time!) so it is about time. I'm not suggesting anything too drastic, after all family is still the most important thing for me, but it is time for me and DH to start considering new opportunities, new places, new ideas - it all requires some creative thinking, but I'm always doing that anyway. Usually my ideas are dismissed as unworkable and a bit far-fetched!!
But maybe now the time is right for some of those 'crazy ' ideas......

(Finishing off a HUGE bobble for my second cabled, bobble hat on New Year's Eve) 

So for a start (and representing a relatiovely small change for now) I have applied for a new job today - not to replace my current one but as an extra day. I currently only work 2 days so I can easily fit in a third day. It feels quite empowering to start the new year with a new job application! Who knows where it might lead - especially as it is based some distance from home (remote working is allowed - I'm not suddenly considering a huge commute). Fingers crossed that I get an interview!

"Word of the year" seems a popular idea and I do like Angel Gem's word 'aspire'. Justine's word is 'simplify', which I also like, and I thought I should go for a combination, even if this only means I 'aspire to simplify'! (I know, a bit corny isn't it?)

I have written a diary for many years, and as the years have passed I have chosen bigger
 diaries, finally for the last few years buying A5 size diaries with one page per day, as 
I found I had more to write each year. 

But last year I struggled to keep up with it. It became more of a burden and a 
chore to be completed at the end of each day rather than a pleasure. I'm even attempting to go back and fill in gaps, hence all the pieces of paper stuck in it, reminders of events that took place on particular days. 

So this year I bought a smaller A6 size and I feel so much happier with it already. Each page is full at the end of the day (although to be fair we have only had 3 full days of 2016 
so it's a bit early to start boasting at how well I'm doing at keeping up with it don't you think?)

This diary travels around with me quite a lot, especially when I go away, so how much easier it will be to carry this smaller one! There, that's my first,tiny step to simplyfying!

Here is my final make of 2015 - and this is what that big bobble was destined for!! 
It is identical to the one I knitted earlier here, but in a darker grey. The first one I gave to 
younger son's girlfriend as a Christmas present. I was unsure whether she would like it but 
younger son visited her over New Year and very kindly sent me photos of her wearing her 
hat when they were out saying that "she loved it"!  

It is a lovely pattern to knit, the hat seems to expand to fit any head size, and I do like the wool so I doubt this will be the last that one I knit...
watch this space!!

And as to my current 'on the needles' project, well that will look familiar as I'm knitting 
another Osen Christmas stocking! We were chatting on Christmas Day and the 
children/young people decided that as of Christmas 2016 when we will have no 'children' 
in the house )all aged 18+ years), they felt they would like to do things a little differently. 

As the first Osen stocking was so well received in our house and is big enough to take several gifts (even if not strong enough, it has to be laid on the floor once gifts are added),
the children decided that next Christmas we should buy each other little gifts to go into
stocking and then a large secret Santa gift for one other person.
So I then received orders for 4 more stockings!! 
I thought I'd better get started! I realised by swapping the red and green for
main/contrasting colours I had enough yarn to knit another stocking and then I will have to
buy some more titus yarn to knit 3 more and mix and match colours.
I'm looking forward to see what colour combinations we arrive at. 

And finally for today ....
I do love drinking tea from an elegant cup that keeps my tea warm so on my birthday recently, when I spent the day in a local city, I treated myself to one of these PiP mugs

Look, it even has some of the design inside the mug!!

Now I really am in love with this mug - but not so much the family as it is neither 
dishwasher or microwave proof. 

So when I next visited the city with my daughter to have a mooch around the sales, I didn't buy anything n the sales, but a matching mug came home with me!

Just perfect!

Best wishes and wishing you all a good week.


  1. I love your new birdy mug, such delicate colours.
    Good luck with your job application.
    Lots of things for you to look forward to I think by the sounds of this post.
    Happy 2016.
    LIsa x

  2. I admire your dedication to diary writing. Blogging is the closest to that I will ever achieve. I love the two bobble hats you've made from that pattern. The colour choice will go with everything and Pom poms are 'in' so I'm told! J x

  3. I used to keep a diary, but blogging very much takes that role in my life, and how marbellous to know that you have a family that takes to adaptations in Christmas traditions. I think next year we may try a change.....

  4. Marvellous. I need to watch the screen, not the TV when I write!
    Although marbellous sounds good as well!

  5. What a pretty mug, I love the way the design continues inside xx

  6. Gorgeous mugs. Good to hear that those boys of yours are working hard, I'm most impressed. It sounds like an exciting time lies ahead for you all, I'm wishing you much luck and happiness for the new year ahead. I hope you get the new job, and that your plans for the future go well. CJ xx

  7. I hope that your aspiration to simplify will be realised and that all of your other plans and hopes come true too! xx

  8. Such beautiful mugs, always a delight to drink tea from something beautiful. Good luck with your job application and new plans for 2016.

  9. Good luck with the job application! Sounds like you have some ideas starting to brew about the next stage of life, hope they come to fruition too. Happy New Year! X

  10. I love that hat! Sounds like you had a busy time. Good luck with the application - I have one to do this week and have to work out how to make myself sound amazing haha :)

  11. I feel your pain about transitioning children to adulthood. My daughter is in her last year of high school and we seem to be on a mad dash for life skills and wisdom. I think I need to calm the heck down about it and have some faith about the situation. But my anxiety isn't listening! Anyway, Eventually they will all be on their own, right? It's the homestretch of parenting. Trying to finish strong! Love your hat and bobble. I may be tempted to do one this winter. And that bird mug - to die for!

  12. It is so nice to "catch up" with you!
    I've enjoyed your post very much and i wish you better luck with your new robin mug than I've had. I had the exact same one and cherished it but the handle broke after just a couple of weeks ;(


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Caz xx