Come on in! It's good to see you today as I finally got round to laying out the coffee cups and stacking up the biscuits to join in with Abi's hostessing at Creating Paper Dreams. I can do tea if you'd rather, but you're definitely in a houseful of coffee drinkers here!
Sorry about the dustsheets. We're in the middle of repainting the hall and we're rushing to get finished up before our visitors from San Diego arrive on Saturday.
I'd love to hear all your news, of course - if you like we can go upstairs where the paint smell isn't so pungent. I know I'm not the only one who suffers with a sore head!
But I'm feeling pretty good today and full of chat myself. It's been a busy summer here - never known one to go so quickly (though maybe I say that every year?) and now we're thinking about our trip to leave our boy across the water to begin his Law course. We got him that new coat I've been promising, half price at the Outlet Village, and stocks of tshirts and sweaters. he's worried about making his money last, but I've said I'll send food parcels..and what's student life without a touch of penury, eh?
His sister is going to miss him. We all are. Is now the time to admit that I've never used Skype? There you go, I knew you'd laugh. But at least now I'm willing to try. That's the way to look at this whole new chapter for us all, right? A chance to search out the new. He's going to need help bringing his stuff backwards and forwards and I think we're all going to grow to love his new city.
But I'm rambling now, and I can see your hand reaching out to those two fat albums on the coffee table. Yes, of course you can look. They're school albums and I began putting them together not long after I started scrapbooking. One each, a double page spread for every school year, with handcut titles and a pocket for reports and the like, all prepared in advance of the classes ahead. We stuck down everything for this year just yesterday. keep going and you'll see one is full now. One school career done, one with three more years to go.
I'll still have one hungry teenager arriving home in the afternoons, so before you go, let me show you my new slow cooker book. You can borrow it if you like, because I think it's brilliant. Or make a note of the title? The Slow Cook Book by Heather Whinney has each recipe two ways, for the slow cooker and the oven. I spotted it on holiday for £16.99 and set it back on the shelf. Then I found it at The Works for £5.99 and brought it home. Oh, go on then, one more book recommendation before I let you go with the promise of a nice beef stew the next time you come: a novel this time The One Hundred Year Old Man who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson. Very funny and it finishes well. No, now don't say I've spoiled it for you: sometimes you need to know what to turn to when you need a happy ending..
..and I'll end here for today. Drop in on Abi and join her for a cuppa. She'll make you very welcome!