They still haven't found what's wrong with Andy. Two MRI scans, the lumbar puncture, an endoscopy and numerous blood and other tests have come up with nothing conclusive. They've sent blood to Cambridge for more specialised tests. It's still a mystery. Whatever it is, it's over and above the strokes.
I called on Gill's mum today. She's a delightful lady who never stops talking. I shall refer to her as Mrs Honeyman. She was born a month before my own mum, I found out, and her late husband shared Mummy's birthday, but he was a year older.
Tomorrow, we're going to meet the Sage's sister Hebe for lunch and to exchange presents. We give her a Stilton, and have done each Christmas for decades. Every so often, we check that it's still what she wants and she says she relies on it. She normally rents a cottage for a week, somewhere between her two offspring (one in Oxon, the other in Bucks) and they all muck in together for Christmas day. She's a lot of fun, Hebe, and we're very fond of her. She lives in Cromer so we normally meet up in Norwich - Hebe has glaucoma and so had to give up driving, so comes by bus usually.
There was a bit of a cock-up on the catering front this evening. I had bought sausages, and decided that the Sage would continue to love me if I made him toad in the hole. So I got them frizzling away while I made the batter, and then found I was 2 ounces shy of plain flour. I knew I was running short, so had bought ... self-raising flour. There was still half a jar left of that in any case. It was past the point of no return with the batter, so I looked for the strong bread-making flour that I expected to have, but didn't, and only came up with some buckwheat flour that I use for blini. I decided that I'd use a little of that and a little of the SR and that would be fine. Well, it wasn't. It didn't rise at all and was heavy. Nice enough flavour, but we just nibbled a bit round the edge and the rest will go to the chickens. They won't mind. The Sage was highly amused by my mistake and promised not to think less of me.
I've done most of my shopping, except for the Sage, but I am out of inspiration for Squiffany. I've got her a couple of things, but not as much as I have for Pugsley, and I think his presents are more fun. In fact, I think that boys' presents are more fun than girls, on the whole. When Weeza was a child, I got them the same sort of things, I didn't treat them differently on account of their sex, but the whole thing seems to be so much more rigid now, and nearly everything seems to be invisibly labelled - well, not so invisibly, because everything "for girls" is a relentless pink. I asked Dilly for more ideas, and she said it's difficult because Squiffany spends most of her time reading and writing. Dilly suggested buying clothes or else tickets for the pantomine in Yagnub, which is a thought if I'm really stuck, but it won't help on Christmas Day when Pugsley is enjoying his cool toys and Squiff is looking at pieces of paper. Ho hum.
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I once made macaroni cheese with icing sugar, thinking it was cornflour.
After halloween, got 3 fairy, princess and witch costumes at 75% discount. Recently got a cardboard, flower papered storage box to put them in for a five year olds birthday. She seem to enjoy the strangeness of it.
How old is Squiff now?
AQ, that really is inedible. I don't think even birds wild touch it.
The trouble is, they do have quite a lot of stuff. They go to car boot sales and pick stuff up cheap. Squiffany is 5, she'll be 6 in March. She likes reading, writing, drawing, dolls, making things - I've given her craft things before, felt, feathers, beads and stuff. She's getting a dollshouse so
Dilly told me what furniture to get. Last year, I got a Lego camera which was a hit that's lasted all year.
How about a nice cricket bat? Never to young to start.
She could probably open the batting for Australia now, if she had her own bat. And was Australian, of course.
Have I recommended the Sticker Dolly Dressing books to you before?
They are *Lovely* hours of fun.
Hope your last lot of Christmas shopping goes well. Still not finished mine either and the weather doesn't encourage one to go out.
Indeed, she got a train set from me for her first birthday. Anything associated with sport is rather less likely, in this family.
You have, Dandelion. And I followed up your advice and bought her one, which went down very well. I also copied your suggestion of a Russian doll. You are a good aunt, all you need now is a niece.
Raining now, Sandy, not nice. I'm sorted for Squiff and I've bought a present from the Sage to me. Now he needs to reciprocate. If he spends the same, we can call it quits.
I'd suggest a beautiful art-style notebook. Either several small or one large A4/A3 one (they are often spiral bound with good-quality cartridge paper in). She can then write or draw in it, and use it as a special journal. Together with some lovely pencils (not the normal ones - there are all sorts of super types in art shops these days). We must encourage creativity in children... And encourage her to keep her journals for when she is older.
If you pick the right sort (Pink Pig are good - you can get them online, but maybe not before the FOTCR™ now...) you can add to them as she gets older. And she (with your help?) can make special covers for them (from papers, fabric etc) too.
Gutted. That was the only idea I had :-(
I think that's a lovely idea, BW. I have come up with a present now - and I wanted a frivolous fun one to match up with Pugsley's - but I'll bear it in mind for her birthday. It's not too easy for me, as it was not something I'd have been interested in at all. It was all about the words, not the pictures, when I was a prosaic-minded child.
A good one though, Dand, and I did take it up.
What Blue Witch set, perhaps with some double sided sticky tape and a prit stick for collages etc...?
Maybe all in a lovely box or case to keep everything tidy and separate. I think she'd like that.
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