Thursday, 25 November 2021

"It Was a Cold November Day and She Had Dressed Herself Up in Layers of Cardigans..."

 

On Tuesday morning I wrapped the eBay sales and Lord Jon dropped them off at the post office, doing a grocery top-up shop on the way back whilst I spent most of the morning listing party dresses on eBay.


Liz called round on the way back from her booster jab and we had a coffee and a catch-up before bagging up some of our leaves for her to take home. 

Propping up the bookcase in a Dilli Grey Indian cotton midi dress & Toast boots (both secondhand eBay finds) and my Rhodes Town turquoise beads. 

Jon was still suffering from his cold so had a lazy afternoon on the settee with Day of the Triffids & Stephen Squirrel. I left him to it and, after several attempts to take a photo using my camera's self-timer, I give it up as a bad job and read my book. After jacket potatoes with cheese and coleslaw we spent the evening watching more of The Americans and Who Do You Think You Are? which was really interesting despite neither of us ever having heard of the "celebrity", some social media influencer, whatever that might be.


On Wednesday, I decided to walk into town as I'd not been further than the postbox on the corner for days and Jon, feeling slightly better, offered to join me (taking a lateral flow test again, just to make sure). After dropping off the eBay parcels at the post office, we had a rummage in the town centre chazzas and found a few interesting bits.


Two vintage waistcoats with snazzy covered buttons, a 1990s Komodo denim jacket (one of the first ethical fashion brands), a leisure shirt which we discovered was actually a Xmas shirt (I blame Jon's cold for adding his brain), a fleece shirt, some cat print Super Socks, a reversible sari skirt with Kantha embroidery, a pair of Converse, another cardi to add to my collection and an Indian block printed cotton maxi dress from Monsoon, still with the £59.99 label attached.

WEARING: Vintage 1970s Mayur Indian gauze dress (Facebook selling page), vintage felted wool hat (charity shop), Toast cowboy boots and wool cable knit cardi (eBay)

Do not adjust your screens, I'm wearing another cardi (secondhand, obviously!)


After lunch, I laundered the finds and sewed tassels on my new-to-me dress as the ones I'd ordered from eBay had arrived in the post. I was intending to dye them black but rather liked the unbleached cotton when I pinned them to the dress so left them as they were.


Wednesday, as always, was rum 'n' cola night and we watched more of The Americans. By the way, those fairy lights have absolutely nothing to do with Xmas, we have them up (and on) all year round.






These teak candlesticks are re-purposed antique spinning bobbins from an Indian cotton mill. I bought one for Liz & Al for Xmas last year and promptly decided that we needed a couple in our lives, too.


On Thursday, after my usual morning routine of a Wii Fit workout followed by a flurry of eBay parcel wrapping, we had breakfast and took delivery of a new duvet. We've upgraded from our cheap and nasty ten-year-old synthetic duvet to 100% wool. Despite always having the window wide open, the heating turned off & sleeping naked I get really hot in bed whereas Jon feels the cold. According to my research, wool is a regulator, not an insulator and regulates your body temperature the same way as it does on the sheep. As the body temperature rises the wool has the amazing ability to transfer heat and moisture along with every fibre and release it into the cooler, drier environment, and when it is cold it keeps the heat in. The truly amazing thing about wool is that it will actually regulate the temperatures of two different people in the same bed. 



I put it on the bed immediately and shall let you know how we get on!


With Lord Jon feeling much better, we drove over to one of our regular chazza shop haunts for a rummage and came back with a rather lovely vintage Irish Tweed coat, a 1980s suede jacket, a Harrington, a limited edition Adidas Originals sports top, a 1950s St Michael Scottish-made mohair & wool scarf, some wonderful waxed green leather boots (far too small for my huge trotters) and two ceramic planters, destined for the bathroom.


The Black Country town we visit always seems to have vintage glass in at least one of its charity shops and over the last few weeks I've managed to amass a collection of 1960s & '70s bud vases (never paying more than £2 a vase). On their own, they're nothing special but lined up on the window ledge with the light shining through they're rather lovely. The yellow one was today's acquisition.


It was a chilly morning. I'd had to chip the ice off the wheelie bin to get last night's cola bottle in it before the fortnight recycling collection. Yesterday's charity shop cardi (worn under my suede coat) kept me lovely and warm when we were out and about.

WEARING: Vintage Treacy Lowe pure silk Indian screen printed maxi dress, Aldo trilby, Betty Jackson leather belt, wool-mix cardi, tribal copal beads (all charity shop finds), Lotta from Stockholm Calou Moa boots (eBay) 

After lunch, I repotted my spotted begonia, which this time last year was a poorly looking thing, rescued from B&Q's clearance shelf. 


It shares a corner in the hall with my brass lizard pattern water jug, made in the Black Country by Joseph Sankey & Sons between 1890 - 1910, which we found in a charity shop back in August. The Art Lustreware bowl is another local piece, made up the road in Burslem at around 1910 and found by my Grandma at a jumble sale in the 1960s. The handsome chap is a maternal ancestor. I don't know his name but Mum always said that he ended his days in an asylum. 

A few years ago I submitted his image to My Daguerreotype Boyfriend and nearly crashed the site. Be warned, if you click the link you'll probably lose hours on there.



Wondering about my blog title? 

Barbara Mary Crampton Pym (2 June 1913 – 11 January 1980)

It's borrowed from Barbara Pym's Jane and Prudence, “It was a cold November day and she had dressed herself up in layers of cardigans and covered the whole lot with her old tweed coat, the one she might have used for feeding the chickens in.” 

See you soon!

59 comments:

  1. Ooh, all those party dresses! I hope they sell well! Glad to hear Jon's feeling better. I read "Day of the Triffids" several years ago and really enjoyed it. I love the deep peacock blue of your living room area - such a great colour - and I love seeing all your little bits and bobs (being a fellow maximalist, I love that everything has a story).

    That is interesting about the wool duvet - I've always owned feather ones, since I was in my 20s and experienced one at a friend's house. I sleep in my band tees, but I'm always hot and L is always cold (our poor cold men!). Look at you in your cardis, Vix! You've become a convert!

    Enjoy your weekend, and may many rum & colas be in your future! ;-P

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    1. I loved photographing those party dresses! I sold an 1980s sequinned one earlier this week and the buyer sent me a photo of her wearing it, it made my day!
      That's the joy of secondhand shopping, isn't it? every piece is special and you can remember the thrill of finding them!
      How funny that you and I are hot blooded and our menfolk aren't? It's so often the opposite.
      Hope you had the best long weekend ever! xxx

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  2. Your living room looks so cosy and those glass vases you've collected look lovely on that windowsill.

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  3. Your cardigans blend really well with your dress patterns and I think they soften everything beautifully. I love your bud vases (the blue one is my favourite) You find the most amazing stuff in chazzas - so many of ours have closed down now. I love fairy lights all year round - they look gorgeous dropped in a big glass vase on a table, yours look so cosy round the fireplace :)

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    1. You've hit the nail on the head, Betty. I love the softening effect cardis have on my dresses!
      The blue vase is my favourite, too. It's funny that I keep finding those vases. I wonder if it's the same person donating them? xxx

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  4. I really have to visit the Black Country chazzas - what fab finds! The glass bud vases are so pretty and what a fab array of colours you've accumulated. Your Treacy Lowe dress is gorgeous and how beautifully co ordinated you are with the hat and the cardi! I have a huge fondness for patterned cardigans and have forbidden myself to buy anymore but you can't beat a good old chunky cardigan!

    Glad to hear Lord Jon is better. What a hunk your relative was! His hairstyle looks very modern. I'd be very interested to find out why he ended up in an asylum. I think you can look at old asylum records online; maybe you could trace him back...

    I can't remember the last time I was at a jumble sale; they seem to be dying out.

    Hope you have a great weekend.
    xxx



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    1. I'm excited about my new found love of cardis, suddenly the woolen rail in the charity shop holds lots of appeal - although there's rather too many acrylic Xmas jumpers, yuk!
      I wish I could find out that ancestor's name. I'm assuming it was someone on Mum's dad's side as they were wealthy and could afford professional photographers.
      I used to love jumble sales! xxx

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  5. Glad to hear Jon's feeling better and your chazza shopping trips could be resumed. Great finds as usual, although I couldn't stop laughing at the Christmas themed shirt. Oh dear!
    You do suit a cardigan, and that latest one is particularly gorgeous worn with the Betty Jackson belt.
    That row of bud vases is lovely indeed, and as always I loved having a peek at your maximalist home decor.
    Your maternal ancestor is a handsome chap indeed, no wonder you nearly crashed the site. I do love a Daguerreotype. I'v got a couple in my collection from my Mum's side of the family, although sadly I've no idea who those people are ... xxx

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    1. Can you believe a Xmas themed shirt? He must have been ill!
      So much fo rthe practical cardi, I've only gone and caught another cold! Grr!
      Isn't it frustrcting not to know the names of the subjects in these old photos, I've got a painting upstairs of what I assume to be a relative dated 1802 and haven't got a clue who he is! xxx

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  6. Looking lovely in your cardis over dresses. I love particularly the belted cardi over the silk dress, such a fab ensemble and such fab accessories (ohh, those beads!)
    Great to see some glass vases, I have a weakness for coloured glass!.
    Hope Lord Jon is feeling better! having a cold can be such a nuissance!
    besos

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    1. Thanks, Monica! Those beads are in my top five of best charity shops finds, I think!
      I love coloured glass, it seems to change depending on the weather and the time of day, always fascinating! xxx

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  7. Ha ha! Yep, we have various 'fairy lights' up and on during the year. Put a couple of battery operated strings in the swingseat in the garden! Pretty pretty.Nothing wrong with cardis. Or vests!! Garden is still looking lovely despite the big chill; lots of greenery. SS keeping himself indoors, sensible lad, curled up with his dad! Photo opportunity, methinks. Zxx

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    1. Have a look at Lights 4 Fun, they do come fabulous indoor and outdoor lights. I've got my eye on a few of their solars! xxx

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  8. I too had my booster this week-the Pfizer-the previous 2 were ask you look great in your maxi dress and cardigan in the garden-far more stylish than me in my grotty forecast I'm going to drag my cardies out of the back bedroom-I may be a while x

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    1. Sorry about this nonsense Vix-it may be predictive text or the fine crack on my screen-ask=Aztra Zeneca and forecast=fleece x

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    2. I hope you were okay after your boosters, Flis. Its a bit of a reliefe having had them after the news of this new variant, isn't it? xxx

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  9. Gotta love a bit of knitwear. I'm known for my collection of unusual cardis and jumpers. The stripy one is very me! Arilx

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    1. If I find another of the stripy ones I'll grab it for you, it's Matalan, believe it or not! xxx

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  10. Love those pretty glass vases and totally with you on the all year round lights.We have them on our bedroom and sitting room windows. Nothing to do with Christmas but ever so pretty in the winter.

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    1. You can't have too mnay fairy lights! xxx

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  11. Wool duvets are fab - we got one from Baavet (courtesy of their bargain box) as well as a mattress topper - years ago. Ours is comfy year-round (unless it is very hot - and we're in the UK - so, dream-on lol). They go over the washing line to air out and look after themselves really.

    Wooly cardies are lovely - I have an enormous Pachamama one and a boiled wool maxi that doubles as a dressing gown on cold mornings! I do like a vintage ladylike beaded one too - I would love a Missoni (dream-on again).

    My Daguerreotype Boyfriend (swoon) - also, the power of being beautifully turned out. Dapper chaps forever!

    Take care all xxx

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    1. Bobbing back to say WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY ... aren't those waxed leather boots in my size? They are absolutely fab (sob)

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    2. I staled Baavet for ages but ended up at Dunelm in the end! We're really impressed although the crackling sound took a while to get used to!
      I found a marvellous 1960s beaded cardi in the chazza last week, pulled it out and it had a massive iron shaped burn on the front - I handed it over to the lady on the counter, it was no good to anyone!
      I could have cried when I found thos eboots, green antiqued leather - the stuff of dreams! Curses to my size 7s! xxx

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  12. That's a handsome man in that old photo. I enjoy sleeping under a 40 year old Scandia goose down comforter my Mother-in-law bought us when my husband was in grad school. The move from sunny California to the fridged Mid-West was a shock to our bodies. I love how light weight, yet super warm it is.

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    1. He's a looker, isn't he?
      We've got an ancient feather quilt which just about covers our feet and you're right, it's lightweight but really warm. I'm inpressed with how well they wash, too. xxx

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  13. If anyone can make an old wooly cardi look fabulous, it's you 🤣, and the cold wind we've had recently certainly makes them a bit necessary.

    Your glass bud vases are wonderful, on their own maybe not so, but seven are a beautiful collection. Chazzas in your part of the world are a heck of a lot more interesting than they are up here.

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    1. Thanks, Jayne! I'm loving my cardi collection, not quite sure why it took me so long to embrace them!
      Yes, those bud vases are nothing on their own but, like a lot of things, en masse they really make an impact! xxx

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  14. thats why i live in wool most of the year the since ages!
    its the best clothing & bedding material ever and no artificial stuff can keep up with that.
    your new discovered love of cardis suit your fabulous dresses perfectly! the colours and textures of the outfit with the treacy lowe dress are pure art.
    glad to hear that jon has recovered!
    xxxxx
    ps: clicked the kinky melon button on your side bar - but the only item i see on the ebay-side is a black coat..... ????

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    1. I thought you'd approve of the wool duvet, I'd been thinking about it for ages and we're both really happy with how cosy it is and how it suits both of our needs!
      Someone else said that the ebay page isn't visible to non-Brits, I'm not sure why as I subscribe to their international shipping programme. I shall have to investigate further! xxx

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  15. other half has just informed me i look like a headless build a bear ,,,i have dragged on my hideous fluffu lounge suit to sit in the freezing kitchen its beyond cardies in here...lol

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    1. He's a right charmer, isn't he? Stay warm! xxx

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  16. Your maternal ancestor bears a resemblance to the poet John Clare, who shares the same biographical detail.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Clare

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    1. Hello David! Doesn't he just? Coincidentally John Clare was my Mum's favourite poet, I wonder if that's why she always had that photo on display. x

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  17. You always look beautiful in your cotton maxi dress and they look just as pretty when you layer them with knits. Your home always look lovely, I love all the art. The party dresses you showed here look amazing, I bet they will sell quickly. I hope Jon feels better soon. Good time to make the wool duvet investment. I can vouch for the wool thing. When I stayed with a friend of mine whose father sells wool items (mostly blankets, duvets, wool isolated mattresses and so on), I slept under a light wool duvet and I was never so warm and comfortable sleeping in my life. Wool is becoming popular again, people are rediscovering the benefits of it. A lot of people living in rural areas used to know how to make the most out of wool, unfortunately in these modern times we sometimes forget about old wisdom but it is never too late to learn something (again). Your maternal ancestor is very handsome indeed. Shame about him spending the rest of his days in an asylum. In the old days, people with mental issues didn't have it easy, there weren't as many treatments and options for them as exist today.

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    1. Thanks so much, Ivana!
      I can't believe how lovely that wool duvet is, its comfortable as soon you you get into bed and both of us have had really good night's sleep. I dress in natural fabrics so it makes sense to sleep in them, I suppose!
      The 19th Century certainly wasn't the good old days for anyone with mental health issues. I'd love to find out more about my handsome ancestor, if only I had a name! xxx

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  18. I didn't know that about wool and we have the same opposite body needs you describe. How wonderful to be described in a passage written decades ago. Incidentally, you probably won't like to be associated with the term, but I think with your blog popularity, you might be reaching influencer status. But, in your case, it's not mass commercialism and sponsorships, but sharing the importance of being ones true self. And wow- he is a handsome man. Quite sad if his life ended so lonely.

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    1. I can definitely recommend the wool duvet, Sam. We've had sub-zero temperatures this weekend and Jon hasn't complained omce of being cold in bed and I haven't overheated either! I like that it will compost down, too - unlike the sythethic version which will still be polluting the planet long after we've shuffled off this mortal coil! xxx

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  19. I wouldn't be without my wool blankets, and I hope yours works out well.
    We did put up christmas lights and as soon as they went up I thought, "Why don't we just keep them up?" as it makes the house so pretty and warm looking.
    Cardigans are wardrobe staples for me as I go from hot to cold so quickly.
    Glad to hear Jon is feeling better.

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    1. I'm very impressed with my wool duvet - the cracking sound is a bit odd but we've both sleep brilliantly!
      You should leave your Xmas lights up all year round, they really do add some warmth and cheer and our house is always in need of that! xxx

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  20. Your Home is always a Retro Vision. Wool is lovely but I find it itchy to my skin. I live in a Desert tho' so not much need for layering anything to keep warm.

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    1. I'd give away all my cardis to live in the desert, Dawn. Fancy a house-swap? xxx

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  21. Well you look woolly lovely Vix! And your rum room looks so snuggly. I think you need to lend one of your cardies to that poor lass above your fireplace though... she's looking a little nippy ;) Fab chazza finds (I can imagine Cristal Carrington from Dynasty wearing the shoulder padded white 80s dress). Your bud vases look so pretty on the windowledge. Glad Lord Jon is better. I had my first cold for almost two years this week :0 I can see how your ancestor would crash that Daguerreotype site... what a corker!!! Have a great weekend. Lulu xXx

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    1. Thanks, Lulu! Maybe I could get Liz to paint a cardi on naked lady, I bet she'd appreciate one - although our male visitors might object, I'm sure she's the only reason we have guests!
      I couldn't resist that white dress, it is so Dynasty, massive shoulders and all!
      What is it with these colds? I've got the bloody thing now!
      I wish I could find out the name of the dishy ancestor, I can't find any mentions of bedlam or asylums in my family tree. xxx

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  22. Interesting about the wool duvet. We have a good down one which we like a lot but we also have an electric duvet with controls for 2 sides so one of you can put the heat on and the other not, with 9 temperatures. The duvet itself is v thin so v adaptable.
    I like your cardigans, they complement your dresses beautifully!
    Love your bud vases!

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    1. I like that we can compost the duvet when it's outlived its purpose. It's been brilliant so far, Jon's been warm enough despite the zero temperatures and I haven't woken up in a sweat! Jon would love the electric duvet! xxx

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  23. please, what is that gorgeous magenta velvet beauty at the end of your bed? I can't tell if it's the bedframe (swoon) or a separate piece

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    1. It's Lloyd Loom blanket box. A friend gave me an old velvet curtain that was almost identical to the bed so I reupholstered the box with it to match. x

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  24. Always so many treasures of all kinds in your posts. The cardies! The quotes! Your eye for design! My Daguerrotype Boyfriend! I barely know where to start...!

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  25. I would love a wool duvet but they cost an arm and a leg here!! Poor jon you should make him wear the shirt on xmas day!! I have a collection of cardis and I love them all. I own a glass bud vase and I love them, but I don’t know we’re it is! You own some fab stuff there!! I need to have a jolly good dig out and sort out.
    Our Xmas gifts game and I have had to hide them of course I felt sorry for the delivery man. I gave him a coffee and I explained that they came from England . He was more than happy to help.
    Weren’t gentlemen of old good looking!! not like now they look like chavs. And yes sadly I did peruse Black Friday and mum put an order of pants and bras in for me!! Haha a girls got to laugh. Take care and keep safe.

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    1. Aren't you lovely making your delivery driver a coffee?
      Those bud vases are sweet, aren't they? I kept rescuing dahlias the pigeons had trampled and lining them up in my vases.
      Victorian gentlemen were lookers, weren't they? No sportswear or wannabe gansta poses.
      Nothing wrong with buying stuff you need on Black Friday! xxx

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  26. I love a cosy cardigan, but I never manage to wear one looking anywhere near as glamourous as you do. X

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    1. Thanks so myc, Jules! I'm not sure if cardis suit me but they're lovely to wear! xxx

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  27. It’s good to hear that Lord Jon is back up and running. You can’t keep a good man down for long.

    Philips off to the osteopath again tomorrow, another good man in the mend.

    You’re wearing cardigans beautifully, it’s a great look on you. I like wearing jumpers over my frocks.

    The glassware looks so lovely grouped together doesn’t it.

    My friends had her hip op now and is due home tomorrow. I think she was expecting to skip out of there within an hour of having it done, silly bugger. Patience isn’t her best virtue.

    Stonecroft is looking mighty cosy. Our gaff needs a bit of tidying up session. Not my favourite task. It’s like a necessary evil heehee. Xxx

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  28. Glad to hear Jon is slowly regaining his good health. That's interesting about wool regulating temperature when used as a bed cover. I sleep wearing as little as possible but like to have lots of covers. I'm tempted to try a wool blanket on the bed this winter. Your maternal ancestor was very easy on the eyes!!

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  29. "A few years ago I submitted his image to My Daguerreotype Boyfriend and nearly crashed the site. Be warned, if you click the link you'll probably lose hours on there." - can confirm. Also, if it isn't tawdry, mightn't your globetrotting Father be a candidate too?

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  30. Your bud vases are so pretty!

    Good to know Jon is on the mend.

    If you've got a wool duvet, it'll probably tell you to give it a good airing each day - wool really absorbs moisture, including sweat. (It's why woollen garments are so heavy when washed.) I do love wool, it's so much warmer than synthetics.

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Lots of love, Vix