I’m sorry I’ve been so silent this December. It’s this placement thingy – it’s been really hard. The first two weeks – agonising back. Now into the last of the second two weeks – streaming hay fever. All four weeks – relentless insomnia. I’m so buggered. And so over it.
Only four days to go … then I am anticipating a terrific summer of loveliness and lots and lots of creativity. Until then …
I do declare that you folk in the Northern Hemisphere have it so much easier. Down here, Christmas coincides with the end of the year – end of school, end of university, end of placements, winding up of work – and the start of the long summer holidays. So there’s always so much else to finish before we can truly prepare for and enjoy the beauty of Christmas.
Perhaps I’m just feeling it more this year. But here we are, 16th December and there’s still a week’s worth of nursing placement and assessments to finish before I can truly hang up my busy year and revel in the Christmassy-ness of it all.
On the creative side, there are so many gifts started – and none finished. But one thing I have managed to stay atop of is our Advent Tree. This year, we are using the funny little tree I collected from hard rubbish on a grey rainy day a few months back. At the time I christened it the Oehlenschlager tree – I declared it was to be covered in cross stitched Danish Christmas decorations as per the lovely book a sweet friend from Instagram gave me in return for Mr. Pollack’s vintage glass juicer.
However, I need another couple of years stitching before the tree can be suitably decked out in these wee stitchings alone. So – the Advent Tree. And given we simply cannot find the Tomtems we have used for many a year, I picked up the crochet hook and got stitching. I give you Advent Roses. Each with its own wee numbered tag.
Each morning, long before Abby arises and according to a long held Bootville tradition, I hang the day’s Advent Rose somewhere in the house and it’s Abby’s job to find it and hang it on the Advent Tree. I must confess, she doesn’t do this with the same gleeful anticipation she possessed ten years ago – ahhhhh the teenage years. But we all enjoy the sweetness of it nevertheless :-)
I’ve even managed to keep up with the stitching of the Advent Roses – there were the perfect project to pack for morning tea and lunch when I was nursing in the Oncology Ward – and extras made lovely gifts to sweet patients. However, a small hitch has only just emerged. I still have 7 to make … and I cannot find the wee basket that is stuffed with the pretty Brown Sheep rosy yarn for the centre, some left over cream, red and mustard Beaverslide from Abby’s Blaithin, a ball of green Paton’s leftover from Abby’s Owl Sweater, and a ball of buttery Rowan leftover from my fairisle tunic (that I don’t think I have ever shared!). That’s right – the whole basket has vanished. I’ve just spent the last half hour first walking briskly through the house confidently looking here and there, then slowly – slightly worried – poking into each corner, and finall,y grumpily crawling around under furniture and behind doors … I even checked the car. I cannot find it.
It must be here somewhere. It’s almost certainly in the living room. But as Julian has observed many a time before – crafty things are sneakily camouflaged here in Bootville. And I have a terrible track record of tucking things into forgotten corners.
A-ha! Found it! Behind the sofa cushion – no wonder I couldn’t shove the cushion back into place each time I sat on the sofa over the weekend. Never mind. Now the kitchen is glowing, the washing hung out, the chooks in bed, a glass of milk is on the bedside table and I am ready to hop into bed and stitch a bouquet of Advent Roses.
Yes, little by little, this Christmas is coming together.