Archive | November 2021

November catch-up

It’s been a wet couple of weeks to end November.

Last weekend, we went for a bush walk, in the rain.

It was lovely being alone on the track. Just Mr and me. We only passed two other couples. Things looks, sound and smell differently in the rain. Some tree trunks are orange and red. The rain muffles all other sounds, except the creek which has turned into a ragging torrent.

Half way through, I realised my Gortex jacket no longer kept the rain out. Well, it is over 20 years old and the rain was relentless. All good until….

Taking off my hiking boots on our front porch, I spied a leech!!! Three exclamation marks are not enough to convey the full horror. I squealed and panicked. “Get it off me!” Then I saw a second one on my pants. More panic. Luckily I had exercise tights on from my morning BodyBalance class. The black slugs couldn’t get under them and were thwarted by the tights from getting higher.

Except the one outside my tights and trying to suck me through the tights. I had Mr S hold the pants away from my leg while I took off my boots and then rolled off the pants.

Three suck marks showed the place where is given leeches a good feed. And they didn’t stop bleeding for hours! Mr S had the evidence of one – high on his thigh a tiny bite mark that also wouldn’t stop bleeding.

After the trauma I needed a long soak in a hot bath with several glasses of restorative bubbles.

I went back to the front porch to see if my clothing was leech free and could be brought in to wash. No leeches. Where do they go?

A few minutes later, in the kitchen, I spied one on my toe!!! How do they hide so well? And attach themselves so quickly? And move so noiselessly? Yes, I squealed again!!!

Yesterday I went to my favourite yoga class. I was a little hesitant as the gym is in a shopping centre. And it’s coming up to Christmas. And it’s the day after Black Friday (whatever that is and why on earth we have to adopt more commercialism). And it’s wet. What else are people going to do but hang out in shopping centres!

Yoga was lovely though I did prefer it when the class started at 9.30 as I was out before the crowds. Now it starts an hour later. Add to this, I popped into a shop to pick up the token Christmas gifts for our admin ladies. When I got to the carpark it was chaos. Very slow. Bumper to bumper.

And damnation. I ran into another car leaving the carpark. My fault but god the man was incredibly aggressive. I offered my drivers licence to photograph and he shouted, “I’ll do more than that!” as he paced around my car, shouting and gesticulating. There goes my zen state from yoga! But hey! No one was hurt and I have comprehension insurance.

Came home and restored myself with a pot of tea and the second book in the Thursday Murder Club. The Man Who Died Twice. I’m loving it.

Then walked up to the local Danish church Christmas market. No market due to COVID but you could preorder things, which I did. And you could have a Danish hotdog with the lot, which I also did. (Not sure if this sausage was a good example of Danish sausages but if so, Germans do better sausages.)

I follow Diane in Denmark on Instagram. She’s a Scot who’s been living in Copenhagen for 20 or so years. For a few months, I’ve been coveting her Danish mixing bowl. Looked for it in the shops. Only found it online. Reasonably priced. But the postage cost to Australia! $95 one place was going to charge.

Well, how lucky am I! The church was selling them. So I got two. I know I will love mixing cakes in them. And whipping cream. They have a rubber ring to stop the bowl slipping on the bench. Very clever.

What else did I get? A 40cm advent calendar candle and a Danish paper wreath in Danish colours.

Home for a nap, chats online to family and ending the night with the movie that marks the Christmas season for me: Love Actually.

Haven’t been decluttering much under the house. The rain has made that impractical and uncomfortable. (Though I have been decluttering around four things a day inside the house – slow and steady, trying to take out more than comes in.)

Haven’t really done any gardening. Though the garden is loving the rain. I sprinkled some blood and bone so the rain this week will soak its goodness into the soil. The flowers below have all come from cuttings from last year. I have had great luck with the hydrangeas! And such a variety from all the cuttings I have taken.

Today, the last Sunday of November, I have done several hours of work for work to do. And some potting and reading and walked up to a local bike shop to buy an e-bike for me for Christmas. Quite surprised at myself. But then I haven’t ridden it yet.

Three weeks left until My Adult Gap Year. From then you’ll find me blogging on my other site. I wonder if there’ll be a change of pace? Or a change of tone?

Sentimental clutter

Do you hang onto things for sentimental reasons? Or because of gift-receiver guilt?

Mr S is very sentimental. And part of that involves holding onto things FOREVER. Here’s some of his reasons to not let go of things for sentimental reasons.

You can’t throw that out:

  • you’ve had it for years
  • I’ve had it for years
  • it’s from – our wedding, my first job, my childhood, my first…,
  • it was a gift from my mother, a student, someone, …

Recent things, Mr S objected to my decluttering:

The cummerbund and matching bow tie he wore at our wedding. It’s such a classic 1990s Laura Ashley floral print. It has never been, and will never be, worn again. Except for fancy dress. Surely you can remember the day without the clothing? Which you can’t see anyway as they’ve been kept in a box under the house for 15 years! [Result: given to school drama department for costume wear.]

Eldest son’s baby tooth. I found it in my drawer. Asked son if he wanted it. He threw it in the bin just as Mr S walked in, knowing something was afoot. “But you’ve had it for so long. You can’t throw it away now.” I don’t need parts of his body to remember him! And hanging onto the tooth because I’ve never tossed it earlier doesn’t make it more valuable. “But I have my tooth stuck in my baby book.” [Upshot: son felt guilty at upsetting his dad so took the tooth out of the bin. But a week later, tossed it again.]

Two money tins. But they were gifts for the boys from Carl Murphy. And you can’t get them anymore. The boys don’t want them. Carl is dead and even if he wasn’t, he wouldn’t care (or remember) if the boys didn’t keep them for 20 years. And you can pick them up off FB Marketplace for $5. [Result: gifted on the FB Buy Nothing site.]

My advice to Mr S on how to deal with sentimental clutter?

  • Don’t over sentimentalise every thing. You can hold memories in your head for ever.
  • Limit the actual items you hold onto – such as to fit in a certain space. I’ve given him a couple of small boxes. God knows where he’s put them.
  • Take a photo.
  • Will our children want to sort through this when you die or we go into a smaller place? (He won’t think about the former and says the latter will never happen. Classic denial.)