A very Merry Belated Christmas to you all!
I was swamped on the run up to Christmas with work, craft commissions, secret Santa makes, craft days, nursery parties and my own Christmas party. It was such a relief to know that my term-time holidays were on their way.
We had a relatively quiet and cosy Christmas. We started off the Christmas celebrations by finishing up the shopping; both presents and food on Saturday which meant Christmas Eve was a day of indulgence. We watched Christmas movies, played classical music on the radio and made mincemeat pies together (tradition). Christmas morning we started with a glass of Bucks Fizz each (one of our other traditions), and then we unwrapped our presents. We always tell each other which one to open and we rip the paper off at the same time, it's fun and since we don't have any children, only a fur baby, we do spoil each other, a bit. Well, I say a bit, I guess I was spoiled a whole lot. I received a beautiful tan Timberland bag (Paul said he didn't want me carrying around a cheap version) and a gorgeous blue cowl (he said he felt sorry for me having to wear thin, lightweight scarves) by the same company. He also gave me a pair of Van high tops and lots of nik-naks. But the gift that brought me to tears; the beautiful Sylvanian Family- Walnut Squirrel. I have longed for a Sylvanian Family since I was a little girl, but never, ever, received one. I gasped when I saw it, and tears welled up in my eyes, I hugged the package so tight; it's so fitting that it's a squirrel family (my nickname). This gift was such a surprise. I do remember telling him that a little one had come into nursery one day with a Sylvanian rabbit and how precious it was to see the little one play with it. I never thought in a million years he would take a hint from my brief comment, a comment I just made in the passing, but he did. I think sometimes I take him for granted and I don't nearly tell him enough that I love him, but I do. More than words can say. (*Aggghhh! I'm crying again).
Stitching Santa; a beautiful swap run by the wonderful and super organised Sheila over at Sewchet
This is my second year participating in this swap and boy it was so much fun. We don't know who is sending to us and we have to refrain from opening our presents until Christmas Day. Last year I posted to Tracy from Mad About Bags UK, and this year she sent to me and what a beautiful parcel she sent. She stalked me (in a good way) to a tee; she knew I love gardening and sent me a handmade gardening tool apron, a gardening bag, a gardening kneeling mat, three books; colouring-in book, a Christmas decoration book and a book for journaling in. Plus lots of gorgeous extras- like wool, mug, decoration, sweets and bath bombs. I can tell you I was pretty overwhelmed by Tracy's gifts and I messaged her immediately to thank her.
My swap partner this year; the very talented Margaret over at The Crafty Creek her blog is fantastic, as is her crafting. Margaret wrote a beautiful piece all about my makes and me over on her blog (link above). Please take a moment to have a look. I have included some photos of the gifts (above) I sent Margaret.
Prizes; well December was eventful. I was contacted by Love Sewing magazine to be told I had won some stunning Mettler sewing thread. Then at the beginning of the month, I was contacted by Jade Earley (The Great British Sewing Bee finalist 2016) The Girl With The Bright Red Hair about a competition I had entered, and guess what I came first. I will tell you in my next post what I had to do to secure first place. For now, I will leave you with the bright red shiny box and its contents and of course my tired out little fur baby. Never seen a Rhodesian rip open Christmas paper like my tiny pooch. What an expert! Lol!
*I don't like talking about this, as I'm not seeking sympathy. Since 2016 I've been suffering terrible anxiety and just before Christmas I was told perhaps a mild form of depression too. My anxiety materialsed after my mum was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. You see we have lost so many relatives on my mum's side of the family to this disease and we thought it had stopped in 2005 but no. It struck again and this time even closer to my sister and I. My mum after receiving a mastectomy and aggressive Chemo and Radiotherapy is doing fine, she has been given the all clear and enjoying life to the full. I'm still in therapy and will probably be so for quite sometime. They are trying to put me through a grieving process for loved ones I have lost, along with how to cope with medical appointments to safeguard my health. I'm currently working on CBT and trying to modify my thought process' from negative to positive using a list format. It's working, it's slow, but I'm getting there. There are days I have to scrape one foot in front of the other and prise myself out of bed, heck even showering is a chore, but I make myself. I have to, I can't lose myself again like I did during the PTSD years. That just ain't going to happen.