Looking back, looking forward

It’s that special time of year when we all do a little reflecting…

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Hoping for lots more of this sort of thing in 2016

I found the beginning of 2015 rather challenging, but life got easier as I made decisions to let some things go – university teaching and acting as a trustee for a local charity being the two main ones – and so I’m feeling quite content looking back. The other big change in 2015 was having the limery built – I’m currently finding it difficult to image life without it, as it gets so much use. Hopefully, 2016 will see it full of even more plants and supplying us with yet more food, as well as being the venue for evening games of scrabble, rainy day picnics and many many cups of coffee.

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No plastic in my tea any more

2015 was also the year that we gave up tea bags. Having discovered that our favourite unbleached, organic tea bags (Clipper) were stuck together with plastic, we took the hard decision and moved over to using loose tea. At first, I hated all the fuss of using an infuser, but over the months I’ve got used to it and it’s now second nature. It took a bit of experimentation before we settled on a preferred tea variety (China Yunnan, in case you are interested), plus we had to buy an extra couple of tins to take to the shop for refills (we buy it unpackaged), but once all that was sorted, it became quite easy to establish a new routine.

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I knitted in Norway, amongst other places

Over the year, I’ve done lots of knitting and crochet, and I’ve worked hard to make use of yarn that I already had. I’m planning to do the same in the coming year – I intend to work my way through the rest of my (now small) stash of sock yarn… it appears everyone is always happy to receive a pair of hand-knitted socks, so it’s not hard to do. And, if I have yarn that I know I’ll never use, I plan to pass it on to someone else. I need to have a look at some of my other craft supplies too. It’s time to let others make use of things that are no longer interesting to me.

Growing in the garden was disrupted in 2015 by the building work, but I am hoping to make up for that in 2016. I’ve already bought seeds and will be sowing my peppers and chillies just as soon as I have some seed compost. The window sills in the limery were made to be wide enough for a seed tray to sit on, so that’s where all the indoor germination will happen from now on. It will be lovely to have space to get lots of crops started indoors, safe from the slugs.

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Me, on top of the shed, with a hammer

My final activity in the garden this year was attaching new roofing felt to the shed this afternoon. A large section had been ripped off off in the high winds a couple of days ago and we needed to get it mended as soon as possible, so I have been up there between showers doing the necessary.

So, now I shall sign off and wish you all a very happy new year… I’ll see you in 2016.

cheers

Cheers!

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16 Comments

  1. Happy New Year! I hope 2016 is magical and wonderful for you and yours! 😀

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  2. Ann Pole

     /  December 31, 2015

    Happy New Year to you both, you are an inspiration and a good friend. 🙂 XXX

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  3. Happy New Year!

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  4. Happy New Year to all at Chez Snail. Can’t wait to see what’s coming from the garden this year. Lots of goodies, I’m sure! 🙂

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  5. My favourite Snail picture of the year – You on Top of a Roof, Hammering!! Hurrah for you! [This is because I appear to have reached an age where feet on ground is the only viable option] You had quite the year with some good decisions made and some wonderful creation being shared about the world too! I must send you a photo of what I am looking at currently – hint: it involves a pukeko and a dragon. Happy New Year Snails!

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    • And a happy new year to you! Do send a picture… I’d love to see it.
      Mr Snail remained with both feet on the ground whist I sat on the shed roof and was photographed and had tools handed to me. I was slightly worried it wouldn’t take my weight, but investing in a locally-made shed rather than a cheap diy chain store one clearly paid off. The only awkward bit was getting over the gutter and back onto the ladder to ‘dismount’! I’m hoping I won’t need to repeat the activity in 2016 😉

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  6. What a diverse and satisfying year you’ve had. May 2016 bring you interesting challenges, equal satisfactions, the love of friends and family and ever-increasing wisdom to share with the rest of us! Two more hours to go… meanwhile, it has been 2016 for a few hours down here already, and I can tell it’s going to be a good one!

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  7. I wish you and Mr Snail all good things in the new year. It must be exciting to know that the limery has worked out so well. Happy potting!

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  8. God morning both, Blwyddyn Newydd Dda. I hope 2016 is set fair to be Great Year for you. One day I’ll look forward to a game of scrabble in the now famous limery amidst the jungle of plants I expect to find. Have a Great Day.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

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  9. Goodbye to a very fine year; hello to one with the potential to be even better!

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  10. What an eventful year! Thanks to you, I made the switch to loose tea as well, and I love it! Now I decide how strong my brew is, and if the mood takes me I can make my own blends too! I’m looking forward to seeing what you get up to in 2016… Oh, and great action shot of you fixing the shed, by the way! I’m impressed! Happy new year 😀

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    • It’s always lovely to hear that my writing has influenced somebody. I fear that I may be becoming a tea snob because, as you say, the loose stuff is so adaptable.

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      • I know, I’d have a hard time going back to bog standard tea bags now myself! Fortunately, a few excellent tea shops have opened in Dublin over the last couple of years, where I can happily feed my addiction 😀

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