Dropping By To Say Hi…

I’m the first to admit. I’m a terrible blogger. It seems the older I get, the worse I am at this promotion malarkey.

2022 has been particularly tricky, because straight out of the blocks in January, Son #3 had a workplace accident, cutting straight through a nerve in his calf and losing all function in his right foot. Cue his parents heading up to Perth for umpteen weeks to provide nursing while he recovered, and making sure he got to all the appointments he had to attend for medical treatment, assessments, physio and whatever else needed to happen. Fortunately, six months down the track he is almost (almost!!) ready to return to work.

Son #3 and his sister, The Bonza Babe

To add insult to injury, being in Perth meant absolutely nothing was getting done down here in Bridgetown – remember how we bought that old house (built in 1904) which had bucketloads of work to be done to it, and we took it on as a project now that the DH has retired from the Air Force? Yep, that’s the one. And it’s now nearly two years since we moved in and we are yet to get the new shed up that we bought just before we moved in. Bridgetown is a lovely place to live, but the weather in winter is not particularly helpful for working on outside projects (it’s actually known as ‘Fridgetown’ during the winter months).

And then, not too long after we got back to Bridgetown, we were devastated to lose Angus McFangus, who crossed Rainbow Bridge at the grand old age of 13. He was such a character, and we were so sad to say goodbye to him.

Angus McFangus

Now the thing about losing Angus, was that up until his death, we had never NOT had a dog in 32 years. We’ve always tended to have a puppy and a middle aged dog, so that as the years pass we always have a younger dog bringing up the rearguard and are never completely dog-free. After McFangus left us, both the DH, the Bonza Babe and myself were like lost souls and we quickly found ourselves two new furry friends, a rescue Cane Corso X who has been named Mollie, and a sixteen week old American Staffy X who belongs to the Bonza Babe and is named Stanley.

Mollie
Stanley

These two have been our saviours since McFangus’s death, and they’re both beginning to reveal particularly entertaining personalities as they settle in here at Wilyerup. Mollie especially is proving to be a joy, because she has quite a vivacious personality now that she’s comfortable enough to reveal it and it’s delightful because she’s a rescue who has a very sketchy background and suffered a lot of abuse. She loves cuddles and kisses, and is quite OCD about the way things should ‘be’ in her life, but that’s okay and we’re learning to work around her little habits. Stanley (AKA ‘The Fluffy Muppet’) is growing like a weed, absolutely loves chewing and digging, and generally runs amok for quite a bit of the day. It’s a good thing cuteness makes up for his behaviour sometimes.

So that’s the first six months of the year done and dusted, with hardly any progress at all – but I did (finally, finally, FINALLY) finish ‘The Seven Sentinels of Camelot – Carnell’ – the first book in a new series. It’s currently with my editing SIL and my good friend Ange, who are giving it a thorough go-over before I hand it in to my publisher. It took a long time to get this one written, but as always there are hiccups with mental health and sometimes, life just gets in the way no matter how hard you try to avoid it.

So that’s a rundown of the first half of 2022. I’m hoping that the second half will have less drama, and much more writing. And maybe even a few more posts over here…

Five Minute Fiction…

The cemetery was still, quiet. It seemed as I walked further into the grounds of the majestic, gothic church, its dominating presence overwhelmed the city beyond, forcing it into silence. No sound penetrated this far into the grounds, and the thick moss beneath my feet also muffled any footsteps.

I walked among the stones, reading the heartfelt epitaths to loved ones, the words which reduced so many lives to the bare bones of existence – date of birth, date of death. What had these people done in the gap between those dates? How had they lived, laughed, loved?

I stopped in front of the grave I sought, dropping the carryall containing my tools at my feet. I scanned the marble a second time, confirming the name, birth and death.

“Time to wake up,” I muttered.

So, it started with a desk…

The start of 2017 has seen me ‘prepping’ for a whole lot of book writing, with plans (in concrete, and written in blood, I swear) to publish six books by December.  I’ve organized, prepared, reorganized my whole approach to social media and cut back on how many ‘things’ I need to keep updated. (Hence why this blog page is now the home of me, my alter ego Leah Dempster, and my editing counterpart The Pedantic Punctuator – one blog is much easier to focus on than three.)

I got a weekly diary, planned out my writing/editing/publishing timetable, gave myself strict instructions on how many words a day would be written, and this week was set aside for ‘prepping’, before ‘writing’.

Hence why it started with a desk.

We have a little study in our new house, which I share with the Darling Husband.  When I say the study is little, I mean tiny.  Minuscule. And it is filled with computer equipment,  bookshelves, printers and all my crafting supplies.  (I used to do craft, until I started editing for a living, and writing books in between edits, so now I have a lot of craft supplies, which take up a lot of space, which require regular dusting, but otherwise don’t come out much.)  And my Darling Husband, although he’s the love of my life, is the antithesis to my OCD Bipolar nuttiness in that he keeps all his stuff EVERYWHERE… He is a lover of flat surfaces and covers them all.

Which leads to that desk issue.

Part of the ‘getting ready for my big 2017 writing projects’ is that I wanted a little space to do my writing.  I had it in our old house, because I had my little desk in our bedroom, with a potted plant, a cute little lantern, a candle and it was… my space.  In the new house, we made the decision to share the study, because there wasn’t quite enough room in the bedroom.  But the prospect of trying to write in the study, with all that… stuff…

I knew it would never work.  I’d be more inclined to start tidying up than do any productive writing.  So I woke up yesterday morning and decided to move the desk.

But first, I needed to rearrange some of the kitchen.

Why I hear you ask?  Well, it began with a need to make some space in the linen cupboard, because I decided that to get the desk out of the study and into our bedroom, I needed to get some of the stuff out of the study.  And while I was at it, I might as well begin organizing the study a little better because you know how it is when you move into a house, and you get to that point where you’re sick of unpacking and things just start getting shoved into the rooms willy-nilly?  The study kind of ended up like that.

So I wanted to reorganize some stuff in the kitchen, to fit the extra kitchen stuff which had collected in half of the linen cupboard, so that I could move some stuff into the linen cupboard from the study, and then I could get the desk out and into our bedroom

Simple.

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But then while I was at it, I had a brainwave.  We recently inherited a wonderful display cabinet from BIL & SIL, and we were considering getting rid of our old cabinet, but then I had a thought.  I could use the old cabinet in the study for better organization!  And get the desk out of the room, and while I was at it, completely rearrange all the shelves!

Perfect.

So consequently, to get my little desk out of the study and seven feet down the hallway and into our bedroom, I moved kitchen stuff around, got kitchen stuff out of the linen cupboard and got it into kitchen cupboards, moved blankets and things out of the laundry cupboards and into the linen cupboard, moved crafty stuff out of the study and into the laundry cupboards… and got the desk out of the study and set up in our bedroom.  Where it looks beautiful, and it’s my own little space and I’m going to be very happy writing in there with the morning sun streaming in through the window.

Which left me with a study which looks like a bomb had hit, shelves half-filled, other shelves empty, a filing cabinet which didn’t look right where it was, and numerous stuffed toys (I’m an addict) which needed to be organized.

So it turns out, moving my little ‘writing space’ into the other room constituted an all day marathon, ‘voluntolding’ the help of Son # 2 and Son #3 to help lift the really heavy stuff, and completely rearranging the kitchen, the linen cupboard, the laundry cupboards, the study and our bedroom to make it all ‘work’.

Mission accomplished!  And now, I’m ready for Monday to roll around because I’m all ready to write!