Found things – more of the vicar’s cards

On balance, in our recent move, more things seem to have gone astray than we had bargained for. The first batch of shelves get fixed to the walls tomorrow so the boxes of books currently filling the living room can be unpacked then – so here’s hoping we shall be a bit nearer being able to lay our hands on to books and favourite bits and bobs absent from us for less than a fortnight but somehow deeply missed.

Birthday card for a 6 year old by David Addison

On the plus side, I did, however, stumble upon an envelope containing photocopies of some of the vicar’s hand made birthday cards and I thought it would be nice to blog them – a happy discovery as embroidery and even knitting have lurched to a halt. The vicar began making these cards in desperation, being on the verge of forgetting a birthday and some miles from the nearest shop. Later we discovered the family loved and looked forward to them, so he couldn’t really stop. Each card is directed very specifically at a particular individual and if there are exotic fish or classical temples you can be sure foreign travel or humanist studies were in the recipient’s immediate hinterland.

Birthday card for a 6 year old by David Addison

We, well he, never knows what he will produce or where his inspiration will take him.  The two cards with 6’s, for his twin granddaughters, suggest little stories in themselves and the wonkiness of the number just adds to their charm.

Birthday card for a boy whose name begins with M (by David Addison)

We have no idea where the letter M as a pair of pantomime breeches came from, nor why one so splendidly dressed should be so down at heel but there you are…

Birthday card for a boy whose name begins with O (by David Addison)

The vicar’s elder grandson’s name begins with the O being loaded on to a builder’s lorry and once again cats, spiders and a bird put in an appearance, yet why the image came to mind like this is anybody’s idea.

To see a couple more of the vicar’s cards, look here.

It all seems a million miles away from last week when I spent election night deep in the HQ of ITN babysitting the new granddaughter while daughter no 1 did the all night election programme. The baby continues to be placid and contented and apart from a bit of grizzle from 8.30 to 10pm as she channelled ambient tension in anticipation of the polls closing, she was a dream baby. Even come 6 am, she was so completely at ease (and asleep) that she was oblivious to the political earthquake that had occurred (in general) and to Tom Bradby (in particular) who picking her up in her car seat swept her into the post programme debriefing to be with her mother. We hope she will be a good deal older before the next election, but we’re holding our breath…


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White wisteria and a coat for summer weddings

White wisteria over an Islington wall

Just under two weeks ago this cascade of white wisteria greeted us as we looked out of daughter no 1’s windows into the garden. Last week as the vicar and I left London, it was still lovely though dropped petals were accumulating beneath it like over abundant confetti. On Sunday, I returned to London to help the political journalists out during the election and found that wind and rain had robbed the tree of all its glory and magic, although – as clever planting reveals itself  – the white rose is moving into the vacuum left by the wisteria. What a difference a week makes in an English summer.

Wisteria embroidered coat

I embroidered this coat a couple of years ago and at the time I took wonderful photos of daughter no 2 wearing it on the morning before she caught a flight out to her job in Vietnam. Rush, rush rush – the story of our lives then – and now. As luck would have it, my computer died shortly afterwards (can’t even remember why now) and, having lost some great photos, I never blogged the coat. Once more I collared daughter no 2 hours away from a flight to Vietnam, though this time for a month’s holiday there, and wouldn’t you know it, once again technical problems intervened, this time with my camera. Photos were instead taken on daughter no 2’s iphone but  by this time I had got into such a flap, few were any good. Well you can’t always fight fate, so here they are…

Wisteria embroidered wedding coat

Our removal from London to Cheltenham was not as smooth as we would have wished owing to what I can only charitably call inexperienced individuals doing the removing. Unpacking at the other end was equally traumatic and thank goodness we had a garage to absorb the 50 boxes of books there was no room for in the house itself! (We’re not worried about this as once our bookcases are up and attached to the wall, these will absorb the contents of packed boxes as a black hole absorbs light. erm ish…)

Wisteria embroidered coat: detail of left side

On the plus side of the move, the cat behaved impeccably. Last year we put her into kennels for 10 days during our move but we had to pick her up after a week when the staff reported she hadn’t been eating and was not happy. Once in London, relieved to see the vicar again, she followed him everywhere or sat nearby when he set up an office under a parasol at the bottom of the garden. (July and August were rather good in London last year.) She did later venture over the fence but never for long and not often. This time, we left her in the garden during the 2 days of packing and in spite of her unease at the sight of suitcases, she remained calm. The travel basket was introduced at the last moment but speed of action and the vicar’s (rather dirty) fleece was sufficient comfort. We had no noise at all from the back of the car throughout the journey. It was a warm day so a towel damp from the shower draped over the basket kept her cool. The next day she was perfectly happy in a new garden, as long as she could pad round after the vicar from time to time. Phew!

White wisteria, Islington, May 2017

The vicar has remained in Cheltenham and is doing heroic things with domestic organisation. On our first day, he visited the local delicatessen (very good home made ice cream) and bumped into a potter he had worked with 20 years ago! He has since wandered into our local church and was delighted (well, almost ecstatic!) to find it not only open on a weekday but full of singing. It is a Seddon church, a bit dark and C19th but home in another way for him as his first wife, who died of cancer before I knew him, had written a thesis on this not generally known architect. It all augers very well for the future.

Breathtakingly beautiful white wisteria in an Islington garden.

White wisteria – inspiration for embroidery

Gorgeousness over the garden wall

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