Saturday, 2 January 2016

Happy 2016

I know it is banal to say it but ..... where do the years go?  Can not believe we are in the twenties never mind sixteen.  There are already whole rafts of people who never 'lived' in the 1900s and somethings......scary stuff.

Whatever the number I hope you and all you care about have a wonderful year ahead.  Health and happiness being the only two things you need, I wish you those in bucketfuls.

I left you in November so there is the whole of December to go at and it was a heck of a busy month.

Just before that though, on 29 November, we signed a contract on the sale of our condo in Naples.  The exchange will take place 29th January.  So, after fifteen years of a split life between here and the sunshine (six months here and six months there) we will stop our gypsy life and settle down in the UK again.  I am doing cartwheels of happiness at the prospect of living here full-time.  Ken is dragging his feet a little but agrees it is the time to do it.

not quite the same view from our bury sitting room window

Co-incidentally and, hopefully, not an omen, also on the 29th two of our fence panels blew down.  This was the second time we had lost some fencing and we have known for a while the posts were pretty rotten at ground level so we had to bite the bullet and arrange to get it all replaced.  It is odd how vulnerable you feel when a chunk of a fence disappears.

By the time we were into the first week of December we were in the throes of having a complete seventeen panel fence replaced, two wardrobes in our main bedroom fitted (plus three chests of drawers made), a greenhouse removed followed by a workroom built in its place and then the now vacated workroom turned back to a guest room (including buying a new bed) before the 25th.

As you can imagine there were a few hiccups along the way but by now it is pretty much sorted - still some tweaking here and there.

Throw in a couple of doctor visits, lunches with chums, decorating rooms for Christmas including buying a seven foot tree and a day with workmen littered hither and yon and a power outage of a few hours and it was not quite a stress-free month!   Oooooh I almost forgot eight trips to Ikea for this and that as we went along - I sooooo love Ikea things and sooooooo hate Ikea.  We have discovered a slight improvement on doing it (so we don't stay home and stick pins in our eyes instead) we now go in the evening after about six and get the place pretty much to ourselves.

We had a really terrific all round traditional Christmas with my daughter and her husband staying with us for a few days - lots of eating and flopping around.  Their first baby is due in May so it was an extra special Christmas for us all.

We declined 'a bit of a do' for New Year's Eve (we are both the epitome of party poopers) and welcomed in the New Year with each other and thoughts of friends and family around the world.

I'll share some photos of the month as we bowled along to give you a flavour of how we said goodbye to 2015.

tree is up and decorations going in

starters are ready

The Hive is framed

my commute to work

a room full of sunshine

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