The days away from my blog have been full of family. My sister Tricia flew up from Sydney on Thursday, we drove to Toowoomba for our aunt's funeral on Friday, while Hanno stayed here with Alice and the chooks. It was fun driving along the back roads with Tricia, we got lost a few times, but not badly lost, and it all added to the experience. The funeral was lovely, a celebration and remembrance of Joy's life with her close family there. I look along a small posy of violets I am growing here that I grew from my mother's garden. My mother Jean and Joy were very close sisters so I know my mum would have liked her flowers there on Joy's casket. My mother died in 1993.
After the funeral we had afternoon tea with the family at a cafe close by. I had only met one of my cousin's Susie's children before so it was good to meet the other two, Angie and Tom. Both Tricia and I were surprised that Tom looks a lot like our grandfather. Tom is a musician and is one of Triple J's unearthed artists. If you go to that link, you'll be able to hear his wonderful song, Hold me Down. Angie was interested in how Hanno and I live so I invited her to come visit us.
Late in the afternoon, Tricia and I headed off to Shane's to stay the night. He lives about a half and hour's drive from Toowoomba, but of course we got lost again and it took us longer to get there. But we had a good night's sleep, a short time with Shane and Sarndra, and we were off again the following morning. We took the back roads again, just stopping for a cup of tea along the way, and arrived home at lunchtime on Saturday. Yesterday my cousin Susie and her husband Nick came over for lunch.
Tricia flies home today, although she will come to work with me this morning while Hanno takes Alice to the vet. She was attacked by a dog when she was walking with Hanno a couple of days ago and now the bite is infected. Poor Alice, she's been through a lot lately. Hopefully we can get her well again and things will settle down for all of us. Oh, I meant to take a photo of Tricia, Susie and I yesterday but forgot all about it. :- (
My sincere thanks to all of you who left a comment about Joy. She was a significant part of my life and my mother's life and I appreciate you sharing the grief we felt and knowing how important she was to us.
I'm back at work today and tomorrow and hopefully things will be back to normal in our little home. I'm well behind on a number of things but I'm sure I'll catch up soon. I've been thinking of Christmas gifts over the past week or so. I doubt I'll have time to do much in the way of sewing or knitting for Christmas this year but I wonder what everyone else is doing. Have you planned your gift list? What will be homemade this year? Even though I won't be joining you in the making of gifts, I'd like to help you organise yourself in some way. Please let me know what you're making, or do a post about your gifts and I will link to it in the next week or so. Hopefully we get some ideas happening for those who haven't given this much thought yet. If Sharon has some time, she might find us some good links for handmade Christmas gifts.
There is no doubt about it, if you're making some gifts this year, now is the time to start. Give yourself plenty of time because we all know how rushed it is as soon as December starts. And don't forget to give me your links and ideas and hopefully they will help the newcomers to the wonderful art of homemade gifts get started.