A catch up List

Forgive me father for it has been nearly two months since my last blog post. I could say I’ve been busy, and I have, but the truth lies somewhere between busy and distracted and lazy. Life has changed so much since May when Mum had her stroke and the household became one instead of two. I’m still finding my own rhythm and my own discipline, some days I get so much done and some days I get nothing done.

What have I to report?:

(1) I’ve had some renovations done, in fact I’m still having renovations done as the handyman is still here as I write. I put calico curtains up in the conservatory so they can be drawn at night to keep the room dark. I had a new shower put into one bathroom and wallpaper to cover where the old shower had been and left a gap..and I am having new tiles put on the bathroom floor. I’ve worked out a plan to do bits of the house at a time and eventually have it just the way I want it.

(2) I hired a skip (or two) and blitzed the garden and the garden shed. The shed is very tidy and looks at me with a critical eye every time I go near it. It also has a new inhabitant, ‘hedgerow’ the hedgehog. He sleeps in there during the day and comes out at night and likes raw eggs. So far the cat has let him be.

(3) I have about 20 stumps in the garden and will get them removed and topsoil added and then flowering plants will be planted. The vege garden is full, and I mean FULL, of potato plants and they are growing like topsy. I have too many plants for the space of the garden and the result will be either a million potatoes or none at all.

(4) I have done a copy-edit of the novel. It has changed title to ‘The Keeper of Secrets’ because a prominent Australian author, Kate Morton, published a novel called ‘The Secret Keeper.’ And it has the most gorgeous cover. I wasn’t sure at first glance but I’ve fallen hopelessly in love with the cover and apparently the HarperCollins sales team love it too. I got the galley proof the other day by courier and have checked that off too. So production is nearly here…

(5) I’ve done a 15 page treatment for the next novel and will get feedback from my editors in about a week or so. Fascinating subject, emotional and funny and poignant.

(6) Mum is doing well. She is sleeping more than she was and that means the brain is healing so her language is coming along. She doesn’t yet really want to talk of her own volition and so I prompt her and she really doesn’t like talking for anyone else but me. That will come as the brain heals further. She’s very mobile and steady on her feet and enjoys going for a walk and sitting in the sunshine. She has a much clearer idea of what’s happened now but seems to be OK with it most of the time. Stroke recovery is a very long-term thing and the steps forward are measured in inches.

(7) Yesterday was US election day. I sat and watched it on TV and then went in and watched some of it with Mum in the resthome and then came home to watch the President’s speech. He has one hell of a speech writer and he is a great orator. He understands timing and the power of response. The last couple of minutes were some of the best speech writing I’ve ever heard and exactly what the American people needed to hear. It won’t be an easy thing, bringing together all those deeply divided people.

(8) Several of my friends and acquaintances are battling cancer at present and I watch their progress from afar and marvel at their courage. I do understand that there is no other choice, you just get on with it, but to remain positive and strong takes courage and I send my love to you all.

(9) By the way, there is a new addition to my ‘family’. I have a four-year old (Tear Fund) sponsored child in Haiti. His name is Lunel and he lives in northern Haiti on a beach called Petite-Anse. It looks a really lovely place on the internet. His father is a church worker and his mother is a teacher and he’s gorgeous. God Bless you little one, may you learn and grow and prosper. He follows in the footsteps of World Vision children in Honduras and Nicaragua who have done very well over the years and I have been a very proud sponsor. Lunel is already doing ‘above average’ in pre-school and I’m sure he will thrive.

Well that’s about it for now. I will not leave it so long again, I promise.