Wow, thank you so much for your response to my Advent boxes! I was worried that I'd gone a bit over the top with them (ok, I definitely did go a bit over the top) but you all liked them and could understand why I'd bothered - for the love of crafting mainly, and for the love of Christmas. Isn't it interesting how appealing things are in miniature form? I bought a couple of bits for those boxes from a dolls house website and I did enjoy browsing those sites. I could really get into the whole dolls house thing given half a chance, but it's probably best if I never go there. But thank you very, very much for your comments.
Well, this weekend has been a whirlwind and I am completely exhausted. We have a beautiful new, four-legged addition to our family called Molly. We collected her yesterday afternoon from our local branch of the Retired Greyhound Trust. She is two and a half and was taken in by the charity when the trainer who owned her retired, which is why she's younger than the usual age for a retired greyhound.
It's been bonkers. She's never lived in a house before so, while it's not quite like having a puppy, there is still a lot of work to be done with training around toileting, food and sleeping. She needs to wear a muzzle when we go out on walks as, to be blunt, she thinks that all birds, squirrels and small dogs are to be chased and eaten. She's only ever been around greyhounds so she needs to learn to play nicely with other dogs, especially smaller ones. The muzzle will come off soon; she's bright and very motivated by treats and praise. We took her to Bosham this morning, a favourite place of ours, for her first sniff of sea air. If all this sounds like a lot of work it is, but we are all a bubble of Molly love.
At home she was at first very quiet, a little anxious, and followed us around. She only settles when we all sit down, which is practically never, as we are always up and down, in and out, doing things, so she is constantly underfoot. But she's also delightful and mischievous and there is definitely a playful side there. She loves her bed and keeps pilfering things - slippers, jumpers, oven gloves - to put in her nest which we all find adorable. She likes picking up shoes and putting them down in places where the owner can't find them. I found one of my boots under the sofa earlier. Mealtimes are interesting because she has never been around food preparation - before, she got fed and that was it. As soon as we sit down at the table she appears, sniffing around plates and all cooking smells are fascinating to her. This afternoon Bella and I made mince pies and I just helped myself to one from the tin (guiltily, in case Molly saw). When my back was turned she had her paws up on the worktop and was trying to open the cake tin with her teeth! So, basically we are getting to know each other and it's hard work but wonderful.
Christmas preparations are ongoing in amongst all this madness. Eucalyptus is currently my new favourite thing and I've made a little indoor wreath from an embroidery hoop. It took about ten minutes and I love it. The silver green of the eucalyptus is so pretty, I really like having it in the house, and it smells fantastic too. I cleared everything off the mantel this week and tried to put back one or two things and I think it looks better that way. I gave my round shelf a little festive attention and treated myself to the Christmas copy of Country Living. I have ordered a turkey and ham, and bought cards and stamps. Of course I haven't written or posted any cards, but simply knowing I bought them makes me feel a whole lot more organised.