Quick but joyous post before I have to dash off

Hi All,

Did you miss me? I am not vain enough to think that most of you did. One less blog to read, one less thing to do in our busy days. I never really ‘got’ how busy days could be till we started our new course and were suddenly hijacked from our delicious lazy days spent beavering away at the PC in our sweats. Now we have to looks somewhat presentable (although ‘presentable’ in our class of youngsters is an entirely different thing to what it was back last century when I was 17…) and what was once a leisurely 4 hours spent wiling away the hours from 3am to 7am when Stevie-boy would slowly open his eyes and would languidly brush away the dogs from his countenance and casually gather together some form of clothing, wander out to the kitchen and sip his first mug of coffee with slow but deliberate joy, is now a manic race to the finish line…

I am still getting up at 3am but I get a very strict 1 ½ hours to do ALL of the things…that’s 1 ½ hours for all of my RSS Feed Reader, answering comments, reading Facebook and anything else that used to be a slow progression and is now a crazy connection of synapses with “what is the MOST important?!” often uppermost in my mind. At 4.30am it is off out into the darkness to water Sanctuary via torchlight. It’s romantic aside from the moths that attempt self-immolation from the moment the torch goes on till when it gets hurried out to wake Stevie-boy to get trotting on our still dark, early morning dog trot. Back in, scoff some breakfast whilst watching the clock, check we have everything for our day and out the door not looking back because we would see this…

Sad and pathetic dog number 1

Sad and pathetic dog number 1

Even sadder and more pathetic dog number 2

Even sadder and more pathetic dog number 2

Life is SO very different to what it was last year but it is also incredibly rewarding now. We are both loving our new class and although the routine and rigmarole it takes to deliver our bums onto our seats in the morning might be a little more crazy than we would like it, once they are on the seat we are most wonderfully engaged. I didn’t think I would enjoy this course. I didn’t think I would be able to learn the software or handle being back in a classroom situation. I was wrong. I love this course and everything that we are learning and the promise of a nice new self-hosted, entirely crafted by “Narf7 and Stevie-boy1” at the end of our year is both exciting and delicious. Watch this space folks, we will be off on a new adventure soon!

I got a most intriguing parcel in the mail yesterday. When I saw the post code I knew who it was from and got highly excited. Ms Alys from Gardeningnirvana blogging fame had sent me some bunting! From the moment I got home I was savouring this parcel. Ms Alys takes mail and makes it UBER special. Every single component of this delightful parcel was stamped with her ubiquitous style and flair. Gorgeous green, everything complementing everything else, perfectly hand made or salvaged and just plain and simply delightful. Alys, you are a shining star of a human being. Taking the time to print out, not only those gorgeous printed cloth panels on that perfect burlap bunting, but to also take images from our blog and use them in an explanatory notelet was perfection to the max. I think you should do this for a living. You are so incredibly good at it. You made me feel incredibly special and most wonderfully wrapped up with your care and attention. That is a most special gift. Never lose it Ms Alys, the world needs more people like you :). And here, for your viewing pleasure, are the contents of my most wonderful and delightful parcel…

This is what I saw when I opened up the parcel bag

This is what I saw when I opened up the parcel bag

Scrumptious, perfectly colour coordinated, eclectic and plain outright delicious!

Scrumptious, perfectly colour coordinated, eclectic and plain outright delicious!

Check out the detail that Ms Alys went to...

Check out the detail that Ms Alys went to…

On both sides...

On both sides…

Just look at these jewelesque bottle caps from California!

Just look at these jewelesque bottle caps from California!

That glorious gold "Ted's" root beer cap is my equivalent of a 10oz figgy fizz...I need to have a lay down...

That glorious gold “Ted’s” root beer cap is my equivalent of a 10oz figgy fizz…I need to have a lay down…

If you aren’t from last century, didn’t watch Sesame Street before it went to the dark side or just can’t remember, check out this clip to see what I am talking about with the ’10oz figgy fizz’ quote…


Gorgeous printed bunting

Gorgeous printed bunting

Check out the amazing detail on the printed cloth

Check out the amazing detail on the printed cloth

Each image carefully selected from past blog posts on The road to Serendipity and most perfectly paired together to give the very best representation of what we are all about and our ethos :)

Each image carefully selected from past blog posts on The road to Serendipity and most perfectly paired together to give the very best representation of what we are all about and our ethos 🙂

I am positively gobsmacked at how lovely this all looks in the very last of our errant summer light.  LOVE YOU Ms Alys :)

I am positively gobsmacked at how lovely this all looks in the very last of our errant summer light. LOVE YOU Ms Alys 🙂

Lastly, this wasn't in the package. I made this for a classmates new baby sister. No-one likes "normal" baby hats right? Ella's mum is going to tie her dummy to that long tail. Dual purpose hattage, my favourite kind ;)

Lastly, this wasn’t in the package. I made this for a classmates new baby sister. No-one likes “normal” baby hats right? Ella’s mum is going to tie her dummy to that long tail. Dual purpose hattage, my favourite kind 😉

Catch you all later, I have to race up to Sanctuary and get watering before Stevie-boy gets back with Earl. Bezial and I are having a rest of walking today. Have a fantastic time till we meet again 🙂


47 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. thecontentedcrafter
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 07:48:13

    And that, as far as I know, rounds off your bunting love-fest. And what a way to round it off! Our Mutual Friend is quite someone isn’t she – words often escape me when it comes to the heart of Alys!

    Glad to hear the course is going well and most importantly you are enjoying it. The early morning scramble will eventually iron itself out and become ‘normal’ – I often think of the many years I spent with no time to dream and meander for myself and chuckle with a knowing kind of a chuckle now that I have all the time in the world to wander and meander and still run out of it [time].

    We now need to see what you are doing with all your bunting and dragon! Please, do get Stevie boy and his camera on the job as soon as he has a spare moment …..



    • Born To Organize
      Mar 04, 2015 @ 14:48:32

      Bunting love fest…I love that Pauline. You’ve started a wonderful trend. It was fun taking part in this unique project, and both you and Fran make me feel like a million bucks. xoxox


    • narf77
      Mar 04, 2015 @ 18:50:34

      When it stops raining and the sun comes out I will Ms Pauline. I just got a lovely banner from a wonderful lady called Nanette. It is particularly scrumptious and is also made of glorious burlap with beautifully coloured hand stitching, a lovely long beaded strip and fabric strips festooning the base. I adore it! Everything that I was sent has made me twitch with happiness and as soon as I can, I am going to string up everything in Sanctuary (after I tart her up a bit, she is a bit shaggy around the edges at the moment 😉 ) and take lots of photos for all of the wonderful senders to see Sanctuary in all her flappy glory 🙂


      • thecontentedcrafter
        Mar 04, 2015 @ 18:56:49

        For some reason I thought you had Nanette’s offering already. She’s another delightful Aussie who joined in the spirit of the RAK. Hasn’t it been the most delightful fun!

      • narf77
        Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:23:12

        It certainly has Ms Pauline 🙂

      • Nanette
        Mar 15, 2015 @ 08:56:13

        Ah, relieved to see my bunting arrived safely, I was beginning to worry it was lost somewhere along the way. I can’t wait to see it hanging in your Sanctuary 🙂

      • narf77
        Mar 16, 2015 @ 02:31:00

        I am working on a post to share about your absolutely scrumptious bunting Nanette. It deserves a post all of it’s own. We have been flat out with our course and I managed to take photos of the bunting and will get a post up ASAP. We had to work all weekend on an upcoming verbal presentation but as soon as we can, we are going to put all of the bunting in Sanctuary and will do the post 🙂

  2. Sue Dreamwalker
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 08:30:10

    Wow… you now have left me breathless as I felt you try to cram all of that in your one and a half hours.. And I can only imagine how ‘blown away’ you were with that gorgeous bunting and all that detail on each one.. How fabulously personalised is that..
    Beer Tops too… now that is going to make Stevie Boy’s eyes light up..
    So pleased you are enjoying your course work..
    And I love that Baby Hat how cool is that.. ..
    So enjoyed catching you before the dawn chorus.. Although for me its 9-30pm ish now and my day almost done..
    Hope all is watered and well in the garden..

    I put in some flower seeds in trays on Sunday.. the green house got a spring clean and compost is warming reading for more seeds to be sewn.. but we had more sprinkles of snow yesterday and today.. so not rushing things just yet.. We have time for more snow yet..

    But he weather forecast is milder for the weekend, so hubby is rotavating the allotments then, to turn the soil over..
    Can’t wait to get my hands dirty 🙂 and put down the knitting! 🙂 for garden gloves..

    Love and Hugs and ENJOY all you do… I certainly enjoyed reading…
    Sue ❤ ❤ 🙂


    • Born To Organize
      Mar 04, 2015 @ 14:46:53



    • narf77
      Mar 04, 2015 @ 18:53:32

      I am most glad to hand over the garden craziness. There is still a lot of craziness going on in Sanctuary and fingers crossed, a lot more ripening of tomatoes to go. I have cucamelons growing like mad and lots of delicious green things. I am going to plant out an entire winter veggie garden this year and saw some awesome purple Brussels sprouts, purple sprouting broccoli, kale and brucale seeds at our local hardware store that I am eyeing off with great interest. Over the next few weeks I am going to assemble an arsenal of seedy heritage delights and will be saving seed this year like crazy to minimise the cost of seeds and to share the love. I have leek and carrot seeds ripening at the moment and will collect seed from my garlic chives as well as anything else that goes to seed this year. Here’s to communal worldwide gardening and I can’t wait to read about your glorious adventures out there in the soil Ms Sue 🙂


  3. brymnsons
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 10:40:55

    How amazingly wonderful is that package! Just lovely, bet you’re still smiling 🙂 Glad you are enjoying your studies. It’s like eating a delicious meal when your mind is being fed something new and enjoyable. x


    • narf77
      Mar 04, 2015 @ 18:59:25

      That is an absolutely brilliant explanation for how we are feeling Kymmy :). You NAILED IT! We feel amazing. Tired as church mice at the end of the day and I am a sad old nana asleep on the couch at 6.30pm BUT our minds are buzzing with possibilities, we are positively over the moon by how exciting it all is and our class are all lovely down to the very last one from the 17 year old boy that sits next to me and talks about his new baby sister to a wonderful eclectic man who is learning how to illustrate childrens books. I love this class and I love this year! 🙂


  4. cityhippyfarmgirl
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 13:54:07

    “normal” baby hats? Oh hell no. Funky one off colourful ones are far more interesting especially when they are made with thought and love…which I suspect your one is sewn in to every beautiful stitch.
    Good to ‘see’ you Ms Narf.


  5. Born To Organize
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 14:45:38

    Fran, my head just grew three sizes. My family will need a wheelbarrow to get me out of this room.

    Seriously, you’ve made my day with the lovely sharing on this post. I know how busy you are and appreciate that you took the time to take photos and write about it. Thank you.

    It’s the funniest thing, but even though I know you live far away and that the bunting arrived via the mail, it still seems incredible on some level that a small package could travel so far and arrive in one piece just a few days later.

    It was really fun making this bunting using photos from your blog. That was my favorite part. I’m with Pauline. I hope Stevie boy will get photos of all your buntings together.

    I’m so glad school is going well, that you are enjoying yourselves and learning a lot. It must be a shock to the system to suddenly be so busy, but clearly you are up to the challenge. xoxox


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:22:38

      We were the children of the last generation before computers hit Ms Alys. We had snail mail and no-one went on holidays as it cost too much and when a family member moved to another country you hardly ever saw or heard from them again aside from the very rare phone call or most welcome letter. The world was a MUCH bigger place than it is now and I am still tickled to know that I can send Steve’s mum an email and she gets it within minutes. We are loving school (at the moment) and are learning heaps. Just starting to learn how to code and it is actually fun! 🙂


      • Born To Organize
        Mar 06, 2015 @ 11:08:21

        Well said, Fran. I never thought of it that way. I still ask my boys to write thank you notes, and they now look at me askance. I do hope they hang on to that little bit of old fashioned goodness as they move out into the world.

        I’m impressed that Steve’s mum uses email. Good for her.

      • narf77
        Mar 07, 2015 @ 05:38:47

        I think everyone should at least learn how to use a PC as it’s how everyone else communicates. There is an amazing network out there for the elderly. No-one needs to be sitting at home ‘alone’ any more.

      • Born To Organize
        Mar 07, 2015 @ 12:45:17

        I love that. My mom wouldn’t use an ATM, so I can’t imagine her in front of a computer. She died in 2008 at the age of 89 so would be 96 this year. I think the internet, for all the complaining people do, is largely a wonderful thing. I can’t imagine my life without it. And I certainly wouldn’t be here ‘chatting’ with you on the other side of this great big planet Earth.

      • narf77
        Mar 08, 2015 @ 04:13:40

        The internet is my ‘window to the world’. I hate flying and even if I didn’t, I am a penniless student hippy, so won’t be indulging in much travel BUT I can find out so very much from the internet. I can find out how to do things, how things work, what colours and flavours other people’s lives right here in the comfort of my computer chair. All I have to do is let my fingers do the walking and take advantage of the incredible generosity of other people who have been so very kind enough to share what they know and how they do it 🙂

      • Born To Organize
        Mar 11, 2015 @ 06:05:16

        The internet connects us to so many resources we might never have. You can search for the most obscure reference…and find it!

        I also think its a wonderful way to connect to the outside world if you have limited mobility or challenged social skills. There is someone and something for everyone.

  6. Born To Organize
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 14:45:58

    PS Adorable baby hat. Precious as can be.


  7. The Snail of Happiness
    Mar 04, 2015 @ 19:16:35

    What a lovely post… and what a lovely parcel to arrive. All that bunting is going to look amazing – can’t wait to see the pictures.
    I’m so glad to hear that you are enjoying your course. Here in the UK all education policy seems to be fixated on gaining qualifications and improving employment prospects, but the reality is so much deeper than that. Learning because you want to learn has a significant effect on health and well-being…. and clearly you are a perfect example!
    Love that baby hat too!


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:23:55

      I love to learn most things. I think I would have trouble with a very maths heavy course but most other things I find something to delight in 🙂


  8. aFrankAngle
    Mar 05, 2015 @ 01:00:03

    You get the most interesting things in the mail. Love Bert & Ernie with bottlecaps!


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:25:10

      I do, don’t I Mr Frank. Must be something to do with me being a little eccentric and attracting some wonderfully eclectic people around me :). I loved Bert and Ernie when Jim Henson was in charge. They aren’t up to the job any more, sorry to say…


  9. Chica Andaluza
    Mar 05, 2015 @ 09:11:37

    What a lovely, wonderful gift – but then, you deserve it! Just curious – what time do you go to bed (or to sleep….how many hours sleep do you survive on)?!


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:26:40

      I go to bed at 7.30 and get up at 3am Ms Chica. I am usually to be found drooling and fast asleep on the sofa at about 6.30pm and drag my tired derriere off to bed for 7.30 where I promptly sleep the sleep of the dead till I wake up at about 2.58 to turn off the alarm clock before it goes off…that is, unless Bezial decides that ‘he’ wants my warm spot and turfs me out earlier! 😉


  10. Littlesundog
    Mar 05, 2015 @ 09:15:16

    I’ll have you know I’m highly disturbed by Earl’s depression. Do I need to fly over there and be a pet nanny while you’re in classes? 😀


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:28:15

      Earl’s depression probably finishes the moment he gets back inside and gets to be the boss for the rest of the day. He is highly joyous when we get home and has a little yodel at us to make sure that we know that we most probably shouldn’t go out again any time soon but both he and Bezial have been angels and haven’t eaten any furniture or anything. SO glad we made them a bigger run around the house as now they can patrol and lay under trees and on the deck and do whatever they like while we aren’t there 🙂


  11. christiglover
    Mar 05, 2015 @ 11:19:39

    What a fun post! I love the bunting and how you share it with us. Life is change, and it’s wonderful to see you and Steve embracing it all. A great blog. Love you. xo


    • narf77
      Mar 05, 2015 @ 16:29:46

      Those who adapt/change, survive. Having SO much fun ‘surviving’ at the moment, especially as I didn’t think that I would like this course at all Ms Christi. You, yourself, are adapting wonderfully to a completely different life to the one that you once led. Life is brilliant if you learn to roll with the punches and adapt to the changes that hurtle at you 🙂


  12. Cecilia
    Mar 06, 2015 @ 04:34:43

    I love the little hat for the baby, how cute.


  13. Robbie
    Mar 06, 2015 @ 10:38:28

    We do miss you!!!! I have been away but I stopped by today to check and see if you posted-YIPEE! Good to hear you got a lovely bunting in the mail-truly good stuff there:-)
    Good to hear you are enjoying your class + it is a great thing when you find something you enjoy. It is a pain if you have to sit through a class you hate!
    Your dogs may miss you-poor things! You both are gone and the house is empty, so they don’t know what to do all day-
    but cuddle which pit bulls are good at!
    and wait for mom and dad:-)
    You have a great weekend!


    • narf77
      Mar 07, 2015 @ 05:37:44

      Not sure our boys are cuddling but they aren’t eating the furniture so that is good enough for me ;). I just got another gorgeous item of bunting that I am going to have to do another blog post about because it is lovely! I am slightly overwhelmed by all of the gorgeous garden apparel that people have been sending me to be honest. It’s so lovely! I have some serious crochet gorgeousness that I will be sharing soon. I sit next to a 17 year old boy in class and his mum has just had a new baby girl so I am able to indulge some of the gorgeous baby patterns that I have been finding lately. Hope she likes them 🙂 The weather will be cool enough for me to put my feet up next to Brunhilda with a lovely cuppa and crochet to my hearts content…we can only dream! 😉


  14. Robbie
    Mar 06, 2015 @ 10:39:35

    aww that hat is adorable!


  15. Yelena
    Mar 09, 2015 @ 12:36:08

    The hat is so cute! With love ❤


  16. Trackback: Blogging 101: All About Alys and Some Bunting for Fran | Gardening Nirvana
  17. Margaret Griffin
    Mar 10, 2015 @ 21:55:06

    Hi Fran, Yes, I see Bezial and Earl are masters of emotional blackmail – such expressions of woe! And yes, you definitely did the right thing in expanding their territory as they have not been tempted to resort to destroying things out of boredom.

    I forget what you will be doing with the bottle caps – making a lagerphone, perhaps?


    • narf77
      Mar 11, 2015 @ 03:37:49

      I am working on some beer bottle cap bunting for Steve’s music room. We are saving up to paint the room first so my project has been put on hold for the moment but as soon as he gets it painted I can work out how much bunting I need for the finished room 🙂


  18. Yelena
    Mar 10, 2015 @ 23:56:39

    Getting a parcel in mail is very special moment, and when it is unexpected it is a Christmas! I am an old fashioned gal, so I love letters written by hand, postcards and parcels. It is so personal and so dear to me. Of course we missed you, what do you think!!

    You have a lovely day and amazing week!!




    • narf77
      Mar 11, 2015 @ 03:40:25

      Hugs to you Yelena and thank you for your lovely comment. You are right about letters and postcards and parcels indeed. There is something really special about receiving something that someone else put thought and effort into in the mail. It is a really lovely expression of someone elses care and makes you feel special from the moment you open the mail box to sitting down to opening the parcel and then admiring the lovely contents. I have been a very lucky and blessed blogger indeed with my wonderful blogging followers and friends and some new wonderful ladies thrown into the mix all sending me items of gorgeous bunting and other little wonderful things to add to Sanctuary and to my new craft room. I am one lucky lady 🙂


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