Sumer is icumen in*

Well it’s the first of December, which, by the way such things are measured here in the Antipodes, is the first day of Summer.

It is also [ usually ] the day upon which I begin blogging the Christmas House Tour.

Not so this year, my sweets.

On December 1, 2011, and again in 2012, I managed to kill the then-current camera[s], and because of that, have been summarily banned from anything involving photography upon this date into the foreseeable future.

Instead I will share with you pix taken yesterday, immediately prior to the arrival of guests for Miss Abigail Rose’s first birthday. [ the actual Natal Anniversay is December 3rd ]

abby 015cake entirely made and decorated by her mummy

abby 016one of several celebratory buntings courtesy yours truly

abby 019

What a difference a year makes.


* translation from middle english: summer is here



That was the week that was

It all started with a phone call Saturday morning from son-in-law to tell me that Nadie had been raced into hospital for emergency surgery following postpartum complications.

Nett result: one mother who needed to see for herself that DD was going to be okay.

Cue first trip down to Melbourne for the week, which pretty much served to remind me why I dislike being anywhere near Melbourne in December. Don’t know what was worse … near-suicidal would-be last-minute shoppers, or the deranged driving of harried delivery drivers. Believe me, I do not argue with the driver of a B Double when he decides to change lanes without indicating.

The day was spent being debriefed and cuddling my gorgeous new girl, who modelled the wee dress that I had just finished


[Bendi Cotton 8 ply from the Magic Back Room of Super Discounts, 4.5mm needle, heavily modified from Yarn-Madness’ cute Bonny Baby singlet ]

All of this accomplished with impeccable behaviour from David during the five hours spent at the hospital. I simply could not have contemplated being able to do that a few years ago. [ Hospital phobia big time ]

Trip back the same day because of certain large caprines requiring comestibles, not to mention four deities felines requiring their daily food tribute.

followed on Sunday by:

my birthday / the anniversary of my beloved’s passing 13 years ago … as you could imagine always a more than slightly bittersweet day. Probably not the best day to be essentially on my own,  so a dear friend came over and had lunch with David and I.

A belated birthday lunch-with-shopping at Kyneton on Monday with my dear friend Robyn, another one of several friends who make sure my day is not entirely doom-and-gloom.

My girl was released from her incarceration on Tuesday morning. As it happened, we had already put Carer plans in place to allow me to go down and spend a couple of days with the new little VP family. Cue second [3 hour because of seasonal madness ] trip down . Obviously the visit was a little different than the one Nadie and I had originally planned … but I did at least manage to Christmassify their livingroom in record time

along with plenty of Abby cuddles

a modicum of housework

and oodles of besotted photo taking of both Abigail Rose


and her 5 month old cousin Asher. 139Ahhh, M’girls 🙂

AND  in the middle of all this bubby sweetness, a very long-planned-for and anticipated Opera Gala at Hamer Hall, followed by a totally unprepared-for invitation to the Gala Reception for the outgoing artistic director, Richard Gill [ Catsmum + high society types + opera singers past and present = fish-out-of-water … if the fish was standing unobtrusively by the wall clutching a mineral water ]

AND Riley’s 6th birthday

AND my belated birthday [ again ]

AND a lightning-fast Christmas gift exchange  because we won’t all be together on The Day

followed by:

the obligatory one-eye-on-the-clock mad dash back north, to pick up Dave [ 2 minutes to spare ] before which I managed to leave half my birthday presents, current knitting and my handbag with mobile phone and purse behind. Thank goodness I didn’t stop and fill up with petrol before discovering the lack of funds!

and two and a half hours later, after some rearrangement of the carport, including tinsel, Christmas music and a tree, welcome several busloads of David’s social club plus volunteers for

the Annual Christmas barbeque,006

016 with face painting:


011 by lovely volunteer Susan

[ volunteer Chris-who-owns-Bear’s-girlfriend-Jett channels Gene Simmons ]001

Of course there was a visit from Father Christmas, and assorted elves


and viewing of the Christmas House

all of which lasted until it was dark enough, some three and a half hours later, for them to pile back in the buses for a tour of local Christmas lights.

After a quick tidy up and the fishing of various bits of wrapping and curly ribbon out of the shrubbery:

Yesterday, knitting buddy Shar came up on the train and we went out to the farm to canoodle goats, have lunch and collect his Beariness, followed by knitting, before Shar’s train home. Dinner was followed by a fly-through visit from the Christmas elf Tara bearing my annual hamper of home baked delights [ including shortbreads, marrons, crostoli, Amazeballs, chilli nut mix and  … white chocolate pistaccio saffrom fudge … I cannot express how delightful this stuff is ]


follow all that with a visit today from yet another knitting buddy Toni, for lunch, knitting, perusal of new knitting books, pressies and the latest round in Toni’s ongoing quest to persuade Bear that she is a nice person worthy of his friendship.


and … no, wait … there was … and I forgot about … and I didn’t tell you …

Phew! No wonder it seems like a long week. Roll on Christmas!

House Tour back on track tomorrow

Fly By

nappy[diaper] cake with baby sock roses and embroidered felt leaves



The baby shower for Chris and Nadie’s little one was [ I think ] a roaring success. Definitely worth the two hours each way in the car. Caught up with some of the extended family and friends, indulged in some new granddaughter snuggles, ooohed and aaahed over the many cutenesses that were showered upon my granddaughter-to-be, and was complimented on both my orange & almond cake and the other cake … the nappy [diaper] cake centrepiece with its tiny sock roses.

Tired now, so I’ll give you a proper post soon.