My birthday - an auspicious one - was last week and I celebrated with lunch with friends and dinner the next day with family. I had many messages and phone calls. It was very gratifying - and I plan to make this celebration last all year.
The gifts I received were so creative, crafty and satisfying that I wanted to record and share them. It is also appropriate for what happens to be my 400th blog post!
My grand-daughter Niamh, still on a mission to save my sofa (and those who sit on it) from pins, made me a fat pincushion using chain stitch, stem stitch, buttonhole stitch and top-stitch - all learned at the Junior Embroiderers' Group of the Embroiderers' Guild. It is wonderfully soft and tactile.
Her brother, with a little recipe help from his father, made me a jar of Fionella - a chocolate and hazelnut spread in the style of Nutella. It is delicious and very nutty.
Brigid crafted, 'fired' and strung me a pendant reminiscent of the waves she spends time riding as part of her Surf Club patrol duty. I looks as if it were made for the top I was wearing!
StitchyBox threads - I wonder where these will take me in 2017?
My younger daughter, whose wonderful knitting has been interrupted for several years by arthritis, has picked up her needles again to make me a necklace, which comes on a gold chain, but can be threaded on to a range of necklaces.
A friend also gave me a bundle of Madiera threads - among my favourites. A couple of books from my brother and a beautiful, bright green handbag from friends completed the gifts showered on me on the day. I feel very blessed - and secure in the knowledge that the skills and joy I learned from my grandmother and mother will go on giving joy beyond my lifespan.