Thursday, 6 March 2014

Pulled in Different Directions

I blame it all on Spring.

He wants to get all the outdoor jobs done
I feel the need to tackle the spring cleaning.

Discussions ensue.

One cup of coffee and a slice of flapjack later
we reach an agreement.

On fine days we will work outdoors
in the gardens, the Owl Wood, or the poly tunnel.
Wet days will be spent indoors,
doing all those horrible jobs
like sweeping the chimneys
and cleaning out the Rayburn flues...

Please let us have really good weather
for I'd much rather be 
Just don't tell George.

The first half of yesterday was wonderful,
the sun shone and the air was mild.

We tidied the ancient hedge line on one side of Owl Wood,
cleared out the silted ditch
and by lunchtime we were both worn out.

I spent most of the afternoon searching
through old computer discs
looking for ancient family photographs.

The Aged One is 92 next week.
There is little that she needs
(except, perhaps, a new heart and a better memory)
so choosing gifts is always difficult.

The carefully chosen gifts from Christmas
are still in their boxes...

So, for her birthday I have decided to make
a journal of her life and family.

Lots of large photographs,
of people she is sure to remember,
with accompanying text to prompt her memory
should it be necessary.

copies of old letters,
details of the family history,
and a copy of the family tree.
All bound into a handmade journal.

Quite often she thinks that I am the cleaner...
or one of her paid carers.
Well, that could be because I do her cleaning and laundry,
or it could be her wicked sense of humour,
but mostly, I think,
it is her poor memory.

We'll see if this gift brings her some joy.

* * *

P.S.   Thank you, to each and every one of you for your comments
on my earlier posts.
I really do appreciate them.


  1. A perfect gift.....filled with love and memories!

  2. That is a wonderful and thoughtful gift, and I too hope that it will bring your aunt some joy.

  3. Hello Elaine:

    Deciding on priorities, and reaching agreement, is never easy but, as you both clearly have done, best concluded over a cup of coffee and a flapjack which, we suspect, was almost certainly home made.

    We were previously somewhat disconcerted to discover that comments were disallowed; now we see this was a temporary measure.

  4. Brilliant post, made me smile. Love the photo of the two of you... dusters at dawn is it?


  5. glad you've opened your comments... I love commenting on blog posts and don't expect anything in return other than for you to keep on blogging... love this post but initially thought you were going to tell us you were splitting up!... xx

  6. A very thoughtful gift indeed.
    I can never get enthused over a pile of ironing, but mowing,weeding,log gathering I'm more than happy with!
    Jane x

  7. Elaine, the book of photos is a magnificent gift. I did something similar for my grandmother, long ago, rephotographing little snap shots and enlarging them in the darkroom. I had a magical afternoon, as her hands touched and held them and she drifted into a reverie of the moment of the picture and the people in it. I hope your gift is magic, too.

  8. I ADORE your new blog look! You have such an eye for beauty and express your thoughts in such a lovely manner! Thank you for sharing with us!

  9. What a beautiful and thoughtful gift! I could sit and go through old photos all day long-I have my parents and grandparents old photos and am working my way through all of them.

  10. Give me outdoor jobs any day! If you tell 'The Aged One' that you're the cleaner, maybe she'll think you're who you actually are!

  11. What wonderful gift, I do hope she loves it.

  12. I vote for outdoors every time, after all dust can only get so thick, and if you prop the doors open on a windy day it will go, maybe. The photo book is a wonderful idea, I have one on the go for each of the grandchildren, they will get them when they are old enough to help fill them.

  13. Such a lovely gift. I know it's hard work, but hopefully it will help.

    I'm much rather be outside too. House work becomes dreary when the weather gets better. :)

  14. Thanks for all your wonderful comments. The outdoor jobs are going well - the polytunnel is having a spring clean today, inside and outside. Cro, next time the Aged Aunt mixes me up with the cleaner I'll ask for some wages! ;) The photographs are all printed out A4 size, the family tree has been broken down into manageable sized chunks, and lots of snippets of family life and fun have been written and incorporated into things. I'll let you know how it is received.


Your comments are much appreciated and greatly enjoyed. x