I'm definitely not a Christmas person. I do enjoy the actual day itself but all the run-up to it - from Christmas cards appearing in the shops in September to frantic food shopping a few days before - really leaves me cold. I know it's not exactly acceptable to have a 'Bah, humbug!' attitude to Christmas but I do, and I'd be quite happy if Christmas only came round once a decade or so. But New Year, now that is a whole different story. I love New Year, it's the thought of being able to start all over again with a clean sheet. My favourite time of the whole year is hanging up a new calendar at the beginning of January - so many blank pages, so many new opportunities, so many chances to finally, this year, do things differently.
2009 was a good year in many respects. I spent a lot of January decluttering and rearranging the dining room and I'm still loving the little craft space I managed to fit in to a corner. Although, oddly enough, it doesn't look quite as tidy now as it did then!!
The car boot season started off lovely and early in mid-March and ran right the way through to mid-October. I had some wonderful finds there - as always. I think top of my list was the humungous bottle of Vidal Sassoon shampoo that I paid 20p for and which lasted me from August to just before Christmas. Not only was it a fantastic bargain but the shampoo really suited my hair nicely too. Also top of my list of great car boot finds this year were some lovely tops in just my size which I got for 50p or £1.00 each and which I have worn and worn, and the £1.00 vintage Christmas Tree which went on to sell for £22.00 on ebay. As always, the car boot sales were great hunting grounds for both clothes and toys for my nephew and one particular car boot in August was a real gold mine.
Ebay sales have been pretty steady all through this past year but have really gone well since September when I began to up my ante quite considerably. Yes, I did get sick and tired of parcelling things up and then having to queue for A-G-E-S in the post office to post them but it was well worth it, as my bank account can now testify. Not only did I manage to make a tidy sum of money over those three months but I also managed to get rid of a fair bit of 'stuff' from the house in the process. I'm hoping to keep chugging along with ebay again this year, and I'm also hoping I can declutter the house even further whilst I'm at it.
Making jam was a useful new skill I learnt this year and we've been enjoying the plum jam enormously ever since (which is just as well as there are still A LOT of jars of it in the sideboard!) I'm even considering trying my hand at a bit of marmalade making in the next couple of weeks - when the Seville oranges are around. And I'm still thinking about having a shot at making Lemon Curd too. I'm hoping we have another bumper harvest of plums this summer as well and then I'll be able to make a ton more jam again.
Although I haven't totally got to grips with crochet as yet, I've definitely got much more an idea about what I'm doing since the lovely cupcakes and crochet evening at our local library in November. I'm hoping to get a little more proficient at crochet in 2010 - which will be helped enormously by the Christmas presents I had - a set of crochet hooks, a book of crochet blocks and a 'how to' crochet book too. I'm also hoping there'll be another 'craft and cupcakes' evening in the not-too-distant future.
As for my plans for 2010? Well, who really knows what could be just around the corner. 2010 is one of those 'big' birthday years for me - half a century no less!! And Mum and I have already got our tickets to see the 'Strictly Come Dancing' show at the Bristol Hippodrome a few days after my actual birthday. I'm also hoping that I can accompany P on a jaunt around Canada and the US in May. P's been asked to give a number of presentations at various locations in North America and we thought it would be nice to go there together and make something of a holiday of it too. We'll see if it ever actually comes to fruition but it would be lovely if it does.
Hope 2010 is a wonderful new year (and new decade) for all of you too. Thank you so much for all your lovely comments and e-mails during 2009 - I appreciate them so much and am still amazed that anyone wants to read my blog, let alone take the time to comment. Happy New Year.