A year in the life of……

9 Dec

Every year, like many of you out there, I compose a ’round robin’ style letter to include with Christmas cards for those friends and relatives we rarely see.  With my increased modern communication channels – this blog, facebook etc I tend to send out very few Christmas  cards so the RR is predominantly for elderly more distant relatives. I really enjoy pulling it together, consolidating ‘a year in the life of…’ into 2 sides of A4.

Here’s this years review (with a few added hyperlinks)… I hope you find it entertaining…

Hi ! It’s that time of year again!  Where do the months go?

On sitting down to write this year’s update to you all, I had to first read last years.  It did make me chuckle!

It read, “…kitchen remains unfinished”.  Hot news.  Kitchen STILL remains unfinished!!  Although the floor and walls are now done!  Its slow progress in this household! Although to be fair John did have his hand operation.

If you remember last year I mentioned he was having an operation on his hand on 13th December.  It was a huge success, a pyro-carbon insert into his thumb joint which has given him back full mobility and eradicated the pain.  It did however take much much longer than the suggested 6 weeks to regain full strength and movement.

Glass panel inspired by Nasa image of Whirlpool Galaxy

Glass panel inspired by Nasa image of Whirlpool Galaxy

The bathroom however IS (finally) finished and, as mentioned, i did create a NASA inspired stained glass window.  My version of a whirlpool galaxy.

us at New Ing lodgeI also spotted the paragraph “…the very talented and handsome Graham Crompton took away my weather-worn Hillman Husky and agreed to restore her ….”.  Like father like son, she finally came home looking amazing but ‘not quite finished’ JUST in time for the annual Imp Club National this August!!!  As I write now she is still awaiting the fitting of new carpets and a solution for a new headlining but the paint job…wow!  The other attribute Graham gets from his father is perfectionism; the paintwork has a mirror finish.

The Imp National was fabulous, At scone near Perth, home of the Imp and celebration its 50th birthday.  Ffloyd managed the whole 1100 miles with only a few minor hiccups. Sadly it didn’t do so well on the way to the local show.  20 miles into our 40 mile journey to Pandy it had  complete electrics failure and we had to arrive there by low loader.  At least we were in the right place to get expert help in fixing her.

A lot has happened for Jason too.  Sadly his band “Lindsays Shirt” split up with their last gig at the Brecon Jazz Fringe in August.  Lots of reasons but largely relating to GCSE commitments.  However, Jason has joined another group.  A very talented bunch calling themselves ‘The Hurricanes’.  They not only cover great rock n roll classics but also write their own material.  They are currently mid-way through the professional recording of a 6 track EP of original works which they intend to send to record companies!!!  If you are computer savvy you can follow their progress.  Here is the link to their You tube channel:

They also have a Facebook page:- https://www.facebook.com/bandnamehurricanes

He’s studying for his final year of GCSEs and on schedule for straight A’s.  He turned 16 on 9th November and had a wonderful party with a group of lovely teens.  He is so lucky to have a wonderful group of supportive friends. We are currently looking at what options he has for A levels with his chosen subjects being Maths, Physics, Music and Geography.

Just after I wrote last year’s review I made the difficult decision to close my arts and crafts shop, In the Pink.  It had been running at a loss for some years – covering its overheads but not paying a salary.  John and I had invested the little savings we had and then December presented a 75% fall in takings at the end of an already bad year.  It was time to stop.  Sad times but the right thing to do.

It’s been interesting since.  My closing down sale scheduled for a week at the end of January made the local press.  I had put a note in the window stating that people who had not supported the business were not welcome to attend the closing down sale! I know, controversial! However, local businesses rely on local support and it’s very annoying when people who never supported you criticise you for closing!  The press got wind of the sign my shop window and I made the front page!

That wasn’t the only occasion I caused a stir in town this year, standing up against (perceived) inappropriate behaviour within in the Town Council didn’t make me very popular but did get the issue resolved.  Not just me but half a dozen of us committed to seeing fairness in the system!

raising awareness of the 2 year anniversary of the temporary lights

raising awareness of the 2 year anniversary of the temporary lights

Our final act of dissidence this year was the ‘traffic light party” orchestrated by our friend Mike Smith to get action in relation to a set of traffic lights that were approaching their 2nd birthday.  Cake, banners, silly hats and a press release.  We made our point. The outstanding works were completed and the lights removed shortly after.  As Wolfie Smith of the Tooting Popular Front used to say, “Power to the People!” – hahaha.

 So there’s a lot there about what we haven’t done.  We haven’t got our shop, we haven’t finished our kitchen,  John hasn’t done much DIY work,  Jason hasn’t turned into a moody teenager!  So what have we been doing?  Other than upsetting the local political system!

Well it’s been a fun and busy year in the B&B as a result of the good summer and mild winter. Lots of lovely new guests as well as a fair number of regulars

John has taken up a hobby that earns him a little on the side. He’s selling on ebay. He ‘finds’ odd things, researches them a then sells them on.  The fun being in the discoveries.  Including a perfect condition 1948 Formula 1 programme picked up at the local tip!  He’s also, in the latter part of the year got back to a spot of Handyman work much to the relief and joy of his fans, the local elder ladies of Llanwrtyd Wells!

1988 Rapido Expomatic - that box houses the fridge

1988 Rapido Expomatic – that box houses the fridge

I’ve become a home-based artist/craftworker, although I am still struggling with not having the routine of going off to work.  I’ve

I have great plans for the exterior of this Elddis it ill become my "Pink Butterfly" mobile gallery

I have great plans for the exterior of this Elddis it ill become my “Pink Butterfly” mobile gallery

had a few commissions and attended a few craft fairs as a trader.  Its lovely being able to be creative but I do need to work on my time management!   We’ve also become fans of the ‘classic’ caravan.  I wanted one to convert into a mobile art studio / craft shop with a view to it being light enough to be towed by a 48 year old car with an 875cc engine!!  After bidding on several I finally discovered one in a friend’s garden just around the corner and am now the proud owner of a 1967ish Elddis 2 berth which I had intended to have refurbished by now. Oh well-a nice winter project. Also its too heavy to tow with Ffloyd but I then discovered the Rapido Exportmatic Folding Caravan having seen one at Imp 50.  I HAD to have one.  So now we do!  I think we might have to open a caravan park!!  I refer you to my blog “Not so Rapido”

What else?  Well, I’ve become a blogger.”Rose Tinted Ramblings from a Less Ordinary Life”   .Why not take a look (oh you are doing!!!)?  For an idea of the peculiarities of life in Mid Wales I suggest you read “Frogs, Bogs and Men in Speedos..!”

That’s it for 2013.  Hopefully no last minute surprises.  I will leave you with my favourite 2013 commission, for John to give his mum, in memory of a most wonderful and generous man.

A study of Brian Crompton - a generous and great man

A study of Brian Crompton – a generous and great man

Wishing you all the joys, delights, love and laughter of your own individual ’less ordinary life’.  Much love and happiness for 2014 xxxx

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