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Laughter & giggles

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One of biggest things that I love about my husband is that he makes me laugh every day. So this weekend I thought I would share some of this part of our life with you.

I have shared that this winter was difficult, but it didn’t stop us laughing: from Rich mimicking me whenever he could: I now hear myself say oh! Before a sentence or asking for something; because he would mimic me and what I had said whenever I did it: ‘boh! Bring my iPad down babes! Or ‘boh. Turn the water in babes!’ As I hear myself say it now I start giggling, whether he is here or not.

Then there are the times I lift something heavy: I didn’t realise that I puff my face out as I do it, like a determined puffer fish until I looked at Rich the other end of whatever we are lifting pulling the same face back at me. Then I start laughing, nearly always drop what I am lifting and end up calling him a bastard!

But I get my revenge: so here is a recent story of my escapades into trying to teach Rich some French:

We are sat on or respective sofa’s when I say to Rich ‘I was thinking to really get to grips with another language you need to understand verbs, adjectives and nouns.’ (Rich never excelled in English grammar, he couldn’t see the point.)

Rich now looks at me suspiciously, but I carry on: ‘Because the French put their adjective after the noun, where we put our adjective in front of the noun, and I think that confuses you.’ Rich looks at me and says ‘whats an adjective?’

Me:’It’s a word that describes a noun. For example the black table. What’s the adjective?’

Rich:’Table’

Me:’No that’s the noun.’

Rich:’What’s a noun?’

Me:’The name of something: Tree, Fire, Dog’. (I’m looking around the living room for inspiration) ‘So the black table, what’s the noun?’

Rich:’The’

Me:’Table, table, table, for fucks sake I just told you.’ Rich starts giggling nervously. But I wasn’t giving up (although I think that’s what he wanted)

Me: ‘So the black table: what’s the noun?’

Rich:’Table’ (yey)

Me: So what’s the adjective?

Rich: ‘The’ (Oh for fucks sake!)

Me (I’m starting to stifle a giggle now) ‘The, the the! What does ‘the’ describe?’

Rich:’The table’

Me: ‘If an adjective is a word that describes the noun how can it be the? What is describing the table?’

Rich: (desperately trying to work out what he has not said) ‘black’

Me: By now I am talking in a very high pitched voice trying not to laugh’ Yes! So if we put our adjective before our noun, what is an adjective?’

Rich:’Table’

Me: (rolling up with high pitched laughter) ‘I give up! I haven’t even got to French yet! You can’t speak English you’ve got no hope with French!’

So moving on to Friday night: I’m cooking the ‘Friday Night Kebab’ with my back to the kitchen. We’re jimbied up (got our pyjamas on), hubby’s milling round the kitchen. Suddenly I hear what sounds like a bumble bee on steroids: I turn to look and see my husband spinning round the kitchen, whilst blowing a continuous raspberry, and spinning either end of his dressing gown belt around. I started to giggle:

‘What are you doing?’

‘I’m a helicopter’

‘Are you really!’

He’s 56 this year!

And that’s why I love him.

Moisy

A house is not a home….

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Sealsea- (2)

Three years ago yesterday i moved out of my beautiful house, by the sea, to start this adventure. I loved this house, have always said it was the most beautiful house I would ever have the privilege  to live in. Edwardian, with so many original features….

Sealsea-1

I had put my heart and soul into it, worked so hard on it renovating and decorating and making it into our home.

We were so rushed when it came to moving day I do not even remember closing the door for the last time, but I do remember sitting in the pub that night with tears rolling down my face. When my book comes out you will understand why the house,  for Rich (and now, as time has gone by I realise  for me also),  had become contaminated; it could never be the home we thought it would be; and as three years have passed I have come to realise that.

So then we found our house on the pinnacle of the rolling hills that are Ambrieres les Vallees, and we fell in love. For me it was bittersweet, it was not the house I had left, it was not the house that had taken part of my soul. But over the three years, despite the well running dry, the crappy cesspit (literally, all over the cellar floor sometimes!!) and the mold on the walls; it has shown me this …….

I sit in my bedrom and I look out at this my favorite tree and I feel at peace

imageimage

And over the years I have realised that a home is about love, companionship, laughter, and tears; it is not the house, it is the people in it. I look at my husband, and he is happier here. I know neither of us could go back to a house where you could reach out and touch your neighbour, surrounded by people and noise. We are too used to the peacefulness that surrounds us; and I have finally come to realise that I do not miss my old home, it was ONE of the most beautiful houses I lived in; but this is the most beautiful home. It has not taken my soul it has replenished it.

A chair is still a chair, even when there’s no one sittin’ there
But a chair is not a house and a house is not a home
When there’s no one there to hold you tight
And no one there you can kiss goodnight

The late great Luther Vandross..

Have a good Sunday folks.

Moisy

You may want to check out my other blog

http://makingthisbetter.com

It may surprise you, and it may give you hope.

There is nothing wrong with a little vignette…

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I wrote a few weeks ago about how we were moving bedrooms and after RD did his stuff, I am still working on it until completed, as RD has been understandingly busy fighting with trees!

Not content with painting the floor and the walls, I decided to paint the furniture as well! The mirror in the above picture has been hand painted with small silver ribbons and flowers.

The mirrors have all been painted, but the door and other things need to be finished, not least this beast…

Three weeks in, 2 coats of undercoat, 2 coats of acrylic, stain bleed, and

we are ready for chalk paint. I still have the mirror to do. Add to that this grey shelf

Even the BLISS is having a makeover.

So not finished yet, but it has a celestial theme, with home made stars, angels, and vintage French lights, and vintage French mirrors. Just a few vignettes for now….

More to come…

Rosie

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A sense of community: There’s nothing like Tree Felling in Biblical Weather!

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It’s all change on the horizon, pretty much like life really!

Picking up from my recent post off RD went on Saturday afternoon across to our field behind our barn, ready to fell our split old cherry tree (I feel for the birds in our garden, they used to feast on that cherry every spring.)

It had been sunny all morning, but as I set off to do the shopping the clouds had drawn in and it was starting to spit with rain. Despite it being dangerous to fell the tree in the rain the men of the commune (well Marc and RD) had made their minds up and were committed. Something they regretted as the afternoon progressed.

In roared Marc on one of his large tractors, up our chemin, and up the steep slope that leads onto our small field. RD shut his eyes as Marc just went for it, with the tractor almost vertical at one point.

Using cable the tree was pulled down and RD proceeded to cut it. By this time the heavens had literally opened, the rain just poured down in torrents as RD and Marc chopped up the tree. RD said he thought he saw The Ark sail down the chemin at one point!

Bless our dear French friend he just kept going, until in the end they were both sopping wet. With the tree now safely on the ground RD called it a day, and Marc took his tractor back to its bed in his barn, leaving RD frantically trying to get the fence back in place for the dogs. As RD hit the fence with his Thor hammer, and it slipped everywhere, Marc giggled at him as RD called the fence a name that is universal in any language! There is a huge hole in our barn roof, but it was impossible to fix it on Saturday, roll on next weekend, something tells me the shenanigans will continue!

It’s all part of the adventure!

Rosie

A sense of community: It’s all go en France

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This is our view from our landing window. You can see that Autumn is in full flow.

Our old listed barn (built in 1812) is to the right of the photo, and you can see in front of it there is a lot of foliage which is the branches from the cherry tree that is in the centre of the photo. A few weeks ago during some high winds, the large branches were ripped from the tree and deposited on the barn roof. As is most often the case it was the side where the roof was decent and watertight!

Now we have a gaping hole in that side of the roof, and RD is going to have to try and cover it, until he replaces the roof next year. Now I have a strange suspicion that is going to take place without health and safety in mind! It’s rural France ffs, who follows health and safety?

You see our dear neighbour and friend, Marc, has offered to help Rich. He has all the farm equipment needed because the cherry tree has sadly got to go. It has split and is weakened, and will be brought down by the strong winter winds we have here. Today Marc will pull the tree using a rope and his tractor and RD will have to cut it as he does so, which will prevent it from falling on the barn, or Marc’s pretty little stable. It is sad but it has to be done.

I have a strange suspicion that I will find H in the cup of Marc’s tractor when I get home from shopping, fixing the roof! I am leaving them to it.

So my view from my window will change, pretty much like life really.

Rosie

This poignant time

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Since you went away the days grow long
And soon I’ll hear old winter’s song
But I miss you most of all my darling
When autumn leaves start to fall

Anyone who reads this blog knows that I love Autumn, for its colours, for what it symbolises: letting go; and because it never fails to remind me that everything must change. That yearly reminder that things must die to make room for the new. It has that constant air of poignancy for what was, for the time that has past and for the things we have lost.

But this year it has been particularly poignant. We both adore our dogs, we believe that dogs teach you about unconditional love, and we are both members of some social media sites that celebrate the Welshie breed, with their smiling faces, and love of cuddles, and wickedly stubborn temperament.

I recently wrote about the tragic death of Dylan the Welshie puppy who was counted as part of our family, but since her death two other young pups have died in tragic circumstances, one was drowned by a goose, and the other, just fourteen months old, was hit by a car. As I write this now my eyes brim with tears for the loss, and for the pain that all those left behind feel. So this year when I look out on the grey rainy days that we have here, and the leaves and walnuts falling from the trees, I am reminded, yet again, that where there is life there is death; there can be no life without it.

“the longest-lived and those who die soonest lose the same thing. The present. The present is all that they can give up since that is all you have and what you do not have, you cannot lose.”

Marcus Aurelius

Treasure every moment, treasure every sunbeam, every raindrop, every rainy day. Hold those close to you tight.

Rosie

Autumn leaves written by Songwriters: Giorgio Canali / Francesco Magnelli / Gianni Maroccolo / Massimo Zamboni / Giovanni Lindo Ferretti

My mad house

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I think this picture pretty much sums up the madness of our house. This is my pretty new basket, which Diddymandod has decided to make her new bed, well one of them anyway!

This is my wet washing with two cats, Molly our very old senile cat, and Daisy, now our youngest since Tilly left

one day and never came home.

This is Wiglet the Welshie, also known as Wiglet the Piglet, wub wub, because I wub her, Princess, Titties, wibble wobble wubble wibble jelly on a plate, and so many more names. I give up trying to keep throws and cushions clean in our house.

This is Harley, the cuddle bunny, my beautiful boy, who made us fall in love with Welshies. After nearly losing him two years ago I say to him every day, ‘we love him more than words can say.’

I have been busy painting our bedroom furniture this week, and because the days have been grey and wet I have had the company of two Welshies asleep on my bed, and Diddymandod, in the draw of the unit that has been removed for painting. Would I have it any other way? No. We don’t care about having to rewash the washing, or cat hairs on our clothes, or mud on the throws on the chairs; we only care about the love that all of these animals bring to our home.

We are blessed.

Rosie

Changes: Not least how much I change my mind. More renovations.

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Way back in 2016 I shared with you the renovations to our bedroom (I cannot believe that was three years ago!)

We chose that particular bedroom from the two because according to the house details it was marginally bigger. But what we hadn’t taken into account was the chimney breast that was in the room, and just how much space it and the small alcove that it left at the end of the room, took up.

We made the bedroom our sanctuary and I renovated all of the furniture, and it was a sanctuary for us.

But over the past year we have started to question whether the other room was bigger, and why we were not using it for us. You see this year has been the first year that we have not had visitors (although that may change at Christmas) and it has allowed us time to think about our home and how we should be making it work for us, and not for ghost people of the future, who may or may not come out to visit for a few weeks of the year. Why do we all do that? Consider if we have seating for perceived visitors in the future when in fact we should be living in the hear and now?

Spurred on we measured the chimney breast and alcolve and worked out that in fact we were losing two square meters from our bedroom, we were sleeping in the smallest bedroom! So we decided to take action and lose the double bed in our spare room, that took up so much room, waiting for someone to sleep in it! Madness!!

We have a day bed that we use as a seat as well, mainly when I am writing and RD comes up to chat. We also have the old mattress available for anyone who visits in the future, but we cannot live our lives waiting, we have to live with here and now.

You may remember that I shared a blog showing how our spare bedroom went from this

To this..

I loved it, I wrote my book, and started my blog in that room, but it is a much bugger room, and we needed to utilise it. So last Saturday we got stuck in: RD had a week off until he starts a new job, and the plan was to work on the house and the logs in the garden. To start with we dismantled all the beds, and realised over the next three days that we are now too old to sleep on the floor even with a mattress! And in no time at all our pretty spare bedroom looked like this

It was necessary you see because, being people who don’t do things by halves, we decided to paint what would be our new bedroom floor, so everything was stacked in what was our bedroom and we slept on the living room floor. Imagine us, wrestling a kingsize mattress down our narrow, curvy French stairs, with the sole intention of throwing it away afterwards. Then we changed our minds and had to wrestle it back up the stairs, which was even harder without the assistance of gravity! Fighting a big bendy mattress, which nearly won, was immense fun (not). But I do think changing my mind, and accepting change is probably something that keeps me alive.

Although we like to keep Sunday’s free last Sunday RD painted the floor, and I managed to give it a coat of varnish. We wanted it to look old, not pristine, to look worn as if the paint had been walked on and worn over the years. I think we succeeded….

RD also painted three of the walls white, and the plan was to give a final varnish on Monday, and the final coats of white to three of the walls.

But as always best plans always change the cesspit took a whole day (they finally finished in the dark at 7.30pm!) and despite my best efforts in varnishing the floor a second time, whilst running up and down the stairs to mop up poo water and bleach my floors, we slept on our mattress on the newly painted floor that night. R D wanted to put the bed together, but he was exhausted and I wouldn’t let him.

One of the things we have realised (I have realised) was that I was trying in some ways to recreate our old home in England, when in fact I need to embrace this home as something new. It has only taken me four years! So as Tuesday came we but our bed back up, and we gave the walls another coat of white. I have never had a predominately white scheme, so have decided to go for it, and do something we have never done before. So all of the furniture in our new room (which feels huge in comparison) is going to be painted white, and one wall has remained blue.We have new furniture in situ (look out for another post) but all of it will be painted white and there is a lot of work for me to do next week.

All will be revealed, but for now here is a glimpse of what’s to come, with my French vintage lights and mirrors in place (but only half painted!)

I can tell you though that on Tuesday night, as I lay in my bed, I gave thanks that I am blessed to have a bed; and it reminded me of a quote from Mark Nepo, in the book of awakening

‘We all walk around within the numbness of our habits and routines so often that we take the marvels of ordinary life for granted.’

Trust me, having a bed to sleep on is one of them.

More to come.

Rosie

Changes: Autumn

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I have missed writing, it’s something I love to do, but this week has been a hugely busy week. All will be revealed in my next series of posts. But first I thought I would share with you what I love about Autumn and living here.

Often when I get up at this time of year and lift the blinds I am inspired by what is around me: the sunrises, the blue skies, the winter skies, and in autumn the mists across the valley.

When I opened the blinds early one morning this week the things that inspired me were the spiders webs, highlighted by the morning dew.

I found myself thinking of how the spiders are frantically making webs to catch the insects in the last of the autumn sunshine, to prepare for winter. Nature just accepts what is happening and goes with the flow; and although spiders creep me out I found myself turning to Harley and saying ‘I suppose they have to live somewhere.’

More changes have taken place in our house, renovations mainly. Look out for more posts.

Have a good weekend folks, and in your busy weekends try and stop, and see the beauty that is around you.

Rosie

Taking things in your stride, a sense of community, and merde!

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One of the things I love about living here are the lessons we have been taught with regard to the way we look at life, and the strong sense of community that French people have in rural France. This last week and especially today have been no exception.

A week ago I noticed a problem with our toilet, it was not flushing and I could hear water running in the cellar. Further investigation showed that we had a problem, and when he got home from work, R/D (he has two names so this is what I am going to call him now! ) concluded that we had a blockage.

We knew that our cesspit was due to be emptied and hoped it would wait until the end of the month because after being let down with a job we were unable to get the ball moving (or the crap on it’s way) until funds were available at the end of the week.

So all week we have been weeing in the garden (in the pouring down of rain) with the dogs looking at me as if I had grown another head! Visits to the public toilets were clearly de rigour for anything else. I even made up a poo bag of rubber gloves, wet wipes, and toilet roll! In fact yesterday as R/D and I went for our afternoon poo, and sat in adjacent stalls (unisex toilets here in France!) I found myself laughing as I called out to R/D ‘living the dream!’

That is the thing for us: we have learned so much. If you had told me years ago that I could live without a roof, water, and now a loo, I would have thought you were mad. But we have lived without all those things, and yet here we are still here. We have not died, we have not suffered, but here in our community we are not judged. And I believe that is the key.

Last week I looked at R/D one evening and said ‘I am not worrying about the loo, because I know it will be resolved in the end.’ We have learned patience, and to not stress about something if you cannot change it. That eventually what you need will come, when the time is right and not when you make it.

We did try to resolve the blockage over the week, hoping that we could hold on to the end of the month to have the cess emptied: we have used shampoo, washing up liquid, drain un-blocker, stronger drain un-blocker, a spiral spring, and a super duper Luigi plunger, but nothing was shifting it!

Once we had money in our pockets I visited our friend and neighbour Mark, for assistance, and literally at 10am this morning the tractor arrived! But after emptying the cess nothing happened, and the loo was still blocked, and despite working on the chambers for over an hour they eventually called the fabulous Pascal, (who I think can do mostly anything) who arrived toute suite. He could speak a little English, I can speak a little French. He looked at our antiquated cess, and asked me about the pipes and lo: they were off! Trying to solve the problem. All these people just trying to help us. It has not been a simple job, they are still here now, over four hours later, covered in crap, literally!

We now have a completely new cess pipe, because the other one was just full of a compacted wall of merde. We found that out when poor Pascale cut into the pipe and it poured out over his head! Marc and R/D laughed!

Here they all are with the lorry in tow, because it appears our cess has a pipe that leads out to the ditch. It is an air pipe, it creates the suction that makes the cess work, and it was blocked by years of mud, and our pine tree, and was in fact a major contributing factor to our problem.

It has to be cleared, and they are still all here, and the tractor is on it’s way…..

This is what I love about France, these people are helping us, using their time, with no questions. England, and even the majority if the English community, is not like that over here; and since starting this adventure there have been times when I am ashamed if my countrymen.

Marc and Nadia, Michelle and Martigne, all the wonderful French people we have met have been nothing but wonderful to us. But we have been reserved at times, have been afraid to approach them and we must have come off as bloody stand offish at times! Our lesson from all of this has been to stop being afraid of not speaking the language and integrate, that is the only way to do it.

Our lesson has been to join the community, so watch this space we will be.

More to come this week.

Rosie

A feeling of disbelief and incredible sadness

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Last year I shared a series of posts from our wonderful, crazy summer, with our friend Karen and her naughty little bundle of mischief Dylly Dyls, the puppy Welsh Terrier that had joined Karen’s life the year before. Karen blogged about the antics of Princess Wiglet and Dylan, they were best buddies, on her blog Dylans Welshie world.

We celebrated birthdays, and the world cup, hosted here in France, and the dogs had a summer of chasing each other, swimming in the pool, playing tuggies with mops (Dylan’s favourite toy in all the world) and Dylan loved riding on the lawn mower with uncle Richard, with whom she celebrated her first birthday on the same day.

The catchphrase of the simmer was ‘Dylan what have you got in your mouth.’ That puppy loved to pick Up everything, and I mean everything up in her mouth, and run with it. Sticks, socks, pants, phones, lighters, packets, you name it. Dylan was a one year old bundle of mischief.

Punctuated within all of this fun and frolic was lots of sleeping, as you do, wherever you fall.

But as autumn drew in things changed and Dylan had a new family. By the late spring she and her mum were off on a new adventure: to live in Spain with her new family and new baby sister, who although a pup was five times bigger than her. But that didn’t deter Dilly Dilly, oh no! She was top dog, and shouted at everyone as they swam in the pool. She spent hours with lots of other dogs, and life was the best.

Dylan was my friends baby, she saved her at a time when so much had changed. Along came this little, fat tempestuous puppy, who was nearly named Chubster, and she gave Karen’s life new meaning and form; and as dogs always do she gave her unconditional love, and taught Karen about giving love, and allowing herself to be vulnerable.

Last Thursday Dylan and her sister pulled down a bin bag that her loving parents thought had been put out of reach. When they were found Dylan had eaten chicken bones, and despite Karen’s determined attempts, the little bugger swallowed them. They perforated her intestines and Dylan collapsed. She was rushed to the vets where Karen pleaded with them to do all they can. But sadly Dylan died in Karen’s arms. Karen could not bring herself to tell us until yesterday, she believed that if she wrote it down it would make it real.

We spoke today, both cried together, I am still crying now. Karen? She is lost, and distraught, and caught in the grip of despair. I wrote years ago about how Harley nearly died, and how a guardian angel saved his life. That angel was Karen, Harley would not be here if it were not for her. What do you say to the person who saved your dog, but nothing could be done to save theirs? Where do you begin? Just listen I suppose, which I will always do. We feel so powerless, so weak, there are no words that can offer comfort.

Dylan had the most adventurous life in her two years of life. She spent a summer with us in France, lived in England, lived in Spain, swam in pools, met new dogs, and made people fall in love with her wherever she went. She persuaded uncle Richard to squirt cream directly into her mouth, chased cats, pulled cupboards down, and had me running after her as she ran straight into our French neighbours house. She took on cows, and sometimes Harley and Wiglet. She was such a little bugger.

She left too soon, there is nothing more to be said. But she taught us all so much, and will leave a lasting legacy, and so many memories.

I am writing this in homage of Dylan for my friend. There is nothing more I can do.

Farewell Dylan, run free on rainbow bridge my darling.

Auntie Moira

Understanding yourself: Getting lost

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Image result for images overgrown garden

As you know I truly believe that life sends you messages, and over the past few months we have had some sent our way to really make us reflect on what we have acheived, and how lucky we are that we fight on and have that spirit in us. I have said before that I do not take for granted the blessings I have been given with regard to resilience and temerity.  So on to our story.

We purchased some items from a site on Facebook where people can sell their second hand goods. H went off to collect the items one Sunday and when he came back he was both shocked but also grateful. His actual words were ‘Or Rosie, I thought we had it bad!’ The couple he had visited had moved here the same time as H and I and had bought a very dilapidated house and land, for less than half that we paid for our house. When H arrived they explained that they had the land and house up for sale and were returning to the UK. The house had holes in the roof (literally) where they were simply putting tiles in the  holes to try and stop the rain. The land was waist high in brambles and long grass, and the outbuildings were falling down. They had only two light bulbs in the house and lived in one room, H said it was unlikely that the roof was going to stay up for another month or two before crashing in. We worry about our cesspit but they did not even had a toilet; and they had lived here nearly five years.

But H felt compassion for them. They had spent their money and said that basically they had now run out and were selling their possessions to survive, despite having a considerable amount of money when they arrived. They had quite simply lost their way.

It is difficult to move to a new country and culture. It is not all about sunny living and long days in front of the pool. The language even if learnt (I can get by) is so difficult, and sometimes it is just so nice to be able to speak to someone in your ‘mother tongue.’ This couple had tried to register for work but had come up against the n’er do wells on Facebook, had been frightened with the bureaucracy because they had encountered difficulties; and become so  overwhelmed they had given up. On everything.

I have documented often how  difficult   it can be living here, I have touched on how vicious some people can be. The normal response to this is ‘well that can happen everywhere!’ And yes, it can, but the difference is if you are in a place where you can speak the language then normally it easier to avoid the n’er do wells, and circumvent them. Here if you are trying to set yourself up in business then you do have to use social media sites such as Facebook and then all the little ugly trolls come out. I was brow beaten and anxious about them when I first moved here, as I have said before I was still ill from my mini breakdown; but this year my Fighting spirit was poked (or the Incredible Hulk as I like to call it -God bless Stan Lee) and my resilience returned. You cannot survive on an adventure like this withouth having the ability to to tell people to ‘fuck off’ and mean it. But not everyone has that, some people are so broken by their experiences, and do not have that natural  resilience and they fall apart.

Ever the empath I asked H if he could offer some labouring work but he looked at me as if to say ‘that is not a good idea’, and when he was honest it was because he did not think they would want it, or more importantly for us, whether they would do it well. Sometimes you cannot help people when they are so lost, and that makes me really sad.

A few weeks later H went to price up a job for someone who lived in one of the large houses that  you can purchase over here. They were elderly and infirm now, so struggling to keep on top of any of the maintenance work that was required, but they had also lived here over fifteen years and yet never decorated their house. When we left their house I sat in the van on the way home and it got me thinking: how many people make this move and then become so overwhelmed they just give up? I said to H about how so many people buy the great big houses, and the acres of land and never think that in ten or fifteen years time they will struggle to maintain it. Even now we know that unless I sell film rights for my book (I live inn hope!) we will not be able to stay here forever, the land is too much work now added on to running a business.

Both of these encounters made us think (as we do). Firstly the encounter with the couple enabled H to see that although he thought we were failing (his good old demon doing a number) we had in fact achieved so much. In four years of being in this house we have: put a new water heater in, a new shower, fitted a kitchen (H built it), new toilet, new kitchen roof, water has been connected, all of the house has been decorated (albeit quickly) a new log burner. Trees have been pollarded, new front doors, the garden has been maintained (to a fashion). We have had it so hard where money has been concerned, but we have always believed that life would give us what we need and it has. H realised that he was not quite the failure that he thought.

But you know failure for these people is not the right word: they struggled because they felt overwhelmed by everything that a new life abroad entails, and as a result they have lost their way. In mental health awareness week it is important to understand that and also see that you are blessed if you are able to claw your way back out of the pit of despair.

It also made me realise that although I can be driven, and although I have to ‘reign it in’, as I have said in my previous post , in life you do have to keep going, small steps every day if necessary, but keep going. But it is also important to know when to let go, to move on to the next part of the adventure, and I know my greatest blessing is that I understand that life will show me the way and I listen to it when it does.

So at a time when mental health is at the forefront of everyone’s mind I thought that I would share this with you, to hopefully help. Small steps., simple things, keep going, just slow down a bit!

Image result for images of sitting on a park bench in autumn

For you all: I love this song, it has memories for me, but we can all be Bob.

Rosie

 

Making This Better the book is now available including the journal entries for the first 5 years of our recovery & the whole 21 days of ‘The War’. Available internationally in paperback and ebook  at Amazon and Barnes & Noble also available at Xlibris and Apple Books for iPad and Waterstones Bookstores for click & collect

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