Friday, 10 January 2014

What’s the Point-settia?

It's Friday and a private peak. 



January is a funny old month, don't you find? After all the bustle and festivities of December, followed very closely by a TV show last weekend, January has now finally kicked in. 
It’s the one month of the year when Dave and I are actually at home, not doing shows and exhibitions, so this is when we look back and look forward, decide what we want to do differently, and make a plan. 
First of all, the house. Grace and Mark, have gone back to New York and San Francisco respectively, after coming home for Christmas. It was wonderful to have them here, and we are blessed to have had a house full of family and friends throughout Christmas week, but it’s also nice to get back into our routine life again. Our bedroom looked like it had been ransacked! I just kept slinging everything in there, because it was the only room nobody except us went in! 
So life is gradually getting back to normal. I am laying off the chocolate, cake and carbs, in a vain attempt to shed a few pounds. I am fed up with this midriff bulge, the muffin look. I’ve got a wardrobe full of nice clobber, and all I can say is THANK GOD FOR LEGGINGS !
It feels like we've been chasing our tails for weeks. I take comfort in the fact that I am just one of many tens of thousands of women, if not millions, who spend way too much time, energy and money during December, trying to make it all lovely for the family, only to sit down afterwards, completely worn out and spent up, and quietly ask the question, “Did I actually enjoy that?”. 


What is the Point-settia?


This bloom looks like I feel ! It was a proper one, too, from the florist, all wrapped up warm. She said they don’t like the cold. 
And now what? 

Do I let it sit in a nice spot and wait a year, in hopes that it will make a comeback?
Do I toss it? And feel a pang of guilt that once again, I was unable to keep a Poinsettia alive?
Do I take it back to the florist, and tell her it caught a cold?
Or do I put it in the cellar, in the dark, and hope that it can swim, because we still have about 4 inches of water down there from the flooding!

I am grateful to have had the family all together. I think (although I can’t say for certain) that it was good to stop work for a week. As to whether I enjoyed spending the best part of three days in the kitchen....
The astounding thing is that I do recall saying to my Mum, around the time when we were serving up Christmas dinner and the sweat was dripping down my cleavage, “Next year, we’re doing this differently”. Actually, the language might have been a little more colourful than that...
But I also know that 340 days from now, God willing, I will be getting excited, buying, wrapping, cleaning, inviting, planning and doing the same old festive jig. I love it!
In fact, when I stop to think about it, I will gratefully cut and peel, and slice and dice, and stuff and bake, and buy and wrap, just to have my parents and kids there, all together again. 
So now they’re gone, the house is all nice and clean and tidy. And empty, except for Romeo. No, I don’t mean Dave! This is Romeo!
  



with love from 
Barb

62 comments:

  1. Hmmmm... Second place to the Cat....Again !

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  2. Your Romeo looks just like my Sabbath! I sling everything into my craft room and haven't tidied it out yet although the rest of the house is sorted. Need to get going! Got a gelli plate to be practising with xx

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  3. Morning Barbara, I would love to see the florists face if you walked into the shop with the Poinsettia and said ' My plant caught a cold', hee hee. Romeo has the best idea, keeping his back warm on the log burner, shift up! Great stamp in the Design Club this month, thank you. Just placed an order through the shop, spent all my Christmas money on Clarity Stamps, the whole set of T'was the night, the Winter Wonderland, the Bird House, the Hares and the log cabin, so you can guess what I will be doing - this years Christmas cards, hee hee. Michellex

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  4. Romeo, and others like him, is probably the most sensible creature. A nice warm fire, a bowl of fast food - what more is needed? Oh yes, some puddles and a choice of laps to sit on. I think we are all guilty of trying too hard at Christmas to do everything. We need to focus more on the important things, being together with family and friends, with those we live and cherish the memories we make together. Having a huge meal and the most expensive presents hides the real joys. We had two big get togethers this year. For the first, I met up with my sister's in law and their husbands, and Geoff' s cousins and their husbands at a local garden centre restaurant. We had a meal we did not cook and time to just sit and chat. The second was a lower key than usual meal on day with the family. The emphasis was on people not things, far closer to the meaning of Christmas. Keep focussing on your family and the pleasure of all being together. Grace and Mark will not remember if there weren't as many sprouts. They will remember the warmth of family love. xx Maggie
    PS my bedroom is still buried beneath the stuff that got dumped in the only place safe from visitors.

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  5. Barbara I have a poinsettia that looks just like yours and I don't know what to do with the poor thing. I hate just tossing it out but there's just no help for it . Oh well onwards and upwards as they say xx

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  6. Hi Barb,
    I think that in every household there is certainly someone who feels the same way - usually the woman of the house ( but not always!). Our house is just about back to normal, although our bedroom still has "extras" in it that I haven't got round to shifting! We also have a cat that is almost glued to the bedroom radiator until the gas fire in the lounge goes on in the evening and then she's straight down and in front of it. One of these days she will roast! I'll have to send you a picture of her! Alison xx

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  7. It's an odd feeling in January and the house, although it's nice to have it clean and tidy, looks bare and sad after the fairy lights and tinsel. Still spring is coming and to look forward too. Think the ponsettia should be put out of its misery. Try again next year!

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  8. It does sometimes seem like alot of "going on" for one day but I love it, no rushing about but spending quality time with loved ones, I really enjoying making my own gifts for family members where possible , gives me a, great deal of enjoyment, maybe some nicely framed artwork as my crafty skills progress for this year xx

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  9. Ps. Maybe try some bubblewrap around your poinsettia? Xx

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    1. Lisa good idea, it will stop the dirt going everywhere when Barb bins it! ;0) x

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  10. I envy your Christmas, but so pleased that you are over the worst of your cold and thanks for the sexy specs they made me chuckle x

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  11. Your poor plant, I must say it looks like I felt too after the onslaught of Christmas. Why do we do this to ourselves? Still everyone enjoyed the festivities. Looking forward to a lazy start to the year and crafting. Joan x

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  12. We had all of our family together for Christmas too - perfect!! The hard work, the mess, the preparation are all well worth it. Pat x

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  13. Oh Barbara what are you like! Love the new specs you should have gone to Specsavers though. Thanks for the weekend shows I recorded them and have only just caught up...my wish list is getting longer .As for the poinsettia I think the best place is the bin....next year buy a cheaper one and look on it as a bunch of flowers with a short life span .By the way keep Romeo away from poinsettias they are poisonous for cats !! He looks gorgeous and likes a warm place ! Have a good weekend.X

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  14. Helloo Barb. Today I needed a boost as have a serious case of the January blues and feeling very unhappy with work at the moment, so I have sat at my desk reading you blog on my bloglovin app and giggled away and I now have a smile on my face. You so bring a real picture of your life to reality in your words, the poinsetta - hey been and worn that tee shirt too many times so I do not buy them any more as mine always looked like yours - My mum does really well with them, she has one in her porch and it is flourishing - yours - I would give it a good send off!!! Ah Romeo - what a lovely looking cat he is - and in a good warm spot! Your description of the sweat rolling down the cleavage made me laugh out loud - good job im in my section on my own right now! then to the muffin top - my muffin top is going to go (I hope) so yes chocolates, bread , less potatoes etc etc - with you there!! Your private peaks are just fab and I thank you for sharing and for brightening my January blues xxx

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    1. Couldn't have put it better Kim..I'm with you and Barb all the way..January blues...not buying Poinsettias....sweaty cleavage and as to the muffin top...yep its got to go!!! Thank you both for a good laugh xx

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  15. Hello Barb!
    You are sounding better! Good!
    I think the sad part is taking the tree down, and packing away all the ornaments with memories attached.
    This year was different.... I had found a lump, and the worry of that was always in the background.
    I had an ultrasound on Wednesday, and thank goodness it was a SCHWANOMA ! sounds like it should be swimming.... but its a non cancerous tumour.. now I can enjoy things again!!!!!
    And you blog has made me laugh today Barb
    Thank you!
    Love Marg

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    1. Thank goodness for that, we had the same worry with grace over Xmas. But God bless the NHS! They took her in, checked her, she's fine, and has gone back to new York with a clean bill of health. X

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    2. Oh goodness, such a worry with one so young - glad she is OK though, xx

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  16. Lol Barbara you have put into (very funny) words just how I feel in January with the added .......
    we are a family of January Birthdays so starting on the 8th January with our daughters birthday it was her 40th (how did that happen!!!) and celebrations are lasting over a few days. We feel we are on the Birthday roundabout and we can't get off until after the 21st which is our grandsons 9th Birthday, all very enjoyable to share with family only this means the month speeds by at an alarming rate suddenly it is February and our Sons Birthday (the last family bday)and phew the celebrations have ended!!!!!!! I need a rest just typing this :))
    I am liking the new look Barb.........lol and love reading your blog and laughing along with you.
    Hopefully I can find some time to join in a challenge or two :(
    MaggieH

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  17. HI Barb ,ye I feel the same nice to get back to normal but a bit down cos all family are gone! tree is still sitting on the floor waiting to be packed away . well I am going off to do some practice on my gellyplate now . xxp

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  18. Wherefore art thow Romeo,...........in front of the fire, of course! lol :-) x

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  19. yes i know exactly what you mean. we went back home to be with family this year. as lovely as that was it's nice to be back in our house with our routines. and i understand why you would do it all again as i would to. the sobering thought for me is when i think: don't know how long this will last. so i say cont for as long as you can. hugs xx

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    1. Precisely, theresa. Happy to sweat as long as i can! Xx

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  20. Oh poor plant - I'm sure you could get a fit and healthy replacement at a discount somewhere!! I felt like you did last year, so this year farmed out some of the jobs, and purchased some ready made bits - did anyone notice I hadn't made them myself - I don't think so, and I was a lot less stressed. Hope your flooding subsides soon - I'm sure that didn't help! My diet will start next week after my birthday. Glad you're feeling better - take a cue from Romeo and have a sit by the fire!

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  21. Love the pictures! I really enjoy January its exciting everything feels new and fresh after the many many weeks and months that Christmas is pushed in our face! Don't get me wrong Christmas is my favorite time of year family and friends together I just don't like it starting in August!!!!
    I have revamped my craft space making rails for my Clarity stamps to hang on so I can see them all at a glance and I'm just waiting on my second order this year from Clarity to arrive, so exciting!!!!!!!!!!
    Lorna D

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  22. Love your pictures and yes I know exactly what you mean! It's lovely to have the family home and spend time together but it's great too to get the house back and sorted and our own routine back again and like you I will do it all again next Christmas

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  23. Hi Barb. Yes it is nice to get back to normal even though over here in Spain Christmas is quite a low level affair with not a lot of Hype. In fact we went out for an Indian meal on Christmas Day and thoroughly enjoyed it.
    Won't be commenting for a couple of weeks as we're off to Egypt for a sunny holiday.
    Take care.
    Love Val x

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  24. Arrr Romeo is lovely ,just love reading your blog x

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  25. Good morning, yesterday it was 65 and so lovely, so Jan is good. You must be feeling a little better.... Take it easy.

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  26. O Barbara, I have a Pointsettia just like yours - and it was given to my by one who not only manages to keep hers alive, she also get them to go red every year!

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  27. Don't toss the Poinsettia! I have the same problem with mine, but I have had the same plant for over two years. Let it dry out a bit in a cooler place for about a week and then bring it back into the warm. Use lukewarm water and a bit of feed...black tea (tannin) is good for it just like its good for orchids too. It will look scraggy for a bit but you will soon see new buds. I keep mine sitting on a ledge above a radiator. Romeo looks like a very smart cat keeping warm by the fire, wish it was me xxxx

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    1. great tips there, Emma, I have never been clever with Poinsettias, any other plant but them xx

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    2. Right Emma, I'm on it. Every Friday I will take a poinsettipic and see how long it takes to revive! Tea, yes? Well, it works for me, so why not for a plant xx

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  28. Christmas needs such a lot of preparation and effort but still worth it though to have the family together. Looking forward to you publishing your workshop dates and hope I can get to one.

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  29. I feel for your plant... However, Romeo looks very smug! I love Christmas, but I love the house after the 'big clean' too! Xxx

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  30. Hi Barbara (I have noticed that some people call you Barb, is that what family and close friends call you or is that what you prefer, me and my husband are a Susan and Christopher but known as Sue and Chris or Mrs Badger and Badger-we have been Scout leaders for so long that most people call us these names now : ) We both hate being called by our full names as we
    only ever heard them if we were naughty as children, same for a lot of people I know! Totally understand and agree 100% with what you say about December/Christmas. Poinsettias have a mind of their own, some want to live, some don't, doesn't seem to matter where they came from or how you treat them, I have two this year and, fingers crossed, they are doing well, at the moment! Pass yours on to a green fingered friend and let them decide what to do with it, then you won't feel guilty when you finally throw it away, you know that is what is going to happen if you're anything like me! : ) Have a good weekend. Take care.

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  31. christmas is a hard time for us mums in all the preparation and planning - but its the best time - I for one love it - and having family around you is just so special - I will never tire of that!!! Big Hugs Rachel x

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  32. Lovely personal blog again today, Barbara.. you're right Christmas is such a mad time for women but we do it willingly cos that's what our mum's did for us .. it's carrying a tradition. In fact since I lost my dear Mum a few years ago (she always used to come to us for Christmas dinner) my son has invited us down to his house, it's wonderful to be spoilt and surrounded by the hustle and bustle of a young family BUT if I'm honest I miss being the one doing all the cooking (sweat running down my brow & cleavage :) ) mostly I miss the smells, the bustle and the satisfaction of seeing my table laid out with enough food to feed an army .... even miss the leftovers.. no turkey to pick at etc. Still as long as I am with family I mustn't complain, Christmas comes with such high expectations and sadly for some it doesn't happen so we have a lot to be grateful for. On a lighter note I love your Romeo, like all cats he's found himself the best seat in the house ... in front of the fire. Hope you're managing to shake off that horrible bug xx Annie

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    1. Thanks Annie. Needed to read that. X

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  33. Hi, I know many have said today's blog made them smile, me too. Though the last part bought a tear to my eyes. We spent xmas with the family too, this year at my sisters with my mother also there and it is the 1st for many years we have managed more than a day or so together.
    I work as a sister on childrens ward and the rule is no annual leave for the 2 weeks and though we alternate actually working xmas or new year there is never enough time off for the travelling.
    I enjoyed this year so much I almost want to retire!
    I have joined the Clarity Club as a belated pressie (from myself) and am really looking forward to the stamps and your words of wisdom throughout the year.
    Aileen xx

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  34. I remember buying a Poinsettia one year and it ended up shrivelling up and dying, but then again I can't even keep Airplants alive. So what hope did I have of keeping the Poinsettias in good condition. Oh well artificial flowers for me and I might stand a chance. Love teading your ramblings and am alrrady looking forward to tomorrows instalment.

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  35. Love the new glasses. I also have brown fingers - most house plants die under my care. How cute and fluffy is Romeo - beautiful.
    Lesley

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  36. I know you said on TV that your eyesight was getting worse but are you really sure those glasses are the answer. Funny though! As for the poinsettia think you could perhaps bin it with a clear conscience as someone commented earlier it is poisonous to cats. I never could keep them, my mum did, hers would still be there in April just as lovely. Christmas is exhausting but great, especially with family and a few silly games so don't think most of us would change it. We just need the other eleven months to recover. Enjoy January. Lynne xx

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  37. Every year I say there has to be an easier way than this but every year I follow the same tradition as was set when I married Derek making sausage rolls, mince pies, vol au vents etc on Christmas Eve while he goes and buys my Christmas Pressie and any other bits I may have forgotten. Only difference now is he now has our daughter in tow and she guides his decisions ;). Romeo looks very cosy in front of the burner and who can blame him ?? I hope the gets the chance to dry out soon, I am also pleased that you are now on the road to recovery xx

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  38. I love reading your blog each day brought a lovley smile to my face my poinsettia always use to looked like yours .my grandaughter bought me a lovley willow heart this year that grows its got shoots everywhere .
    Sheila xx

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  39. My feelings entirely over Christmas. It was may turn 'to cook' this year, five adults, 1 grandchild and 2 dogs! Noisy but good. Now they've all returned to the south, one lot to South Wales and the one to Somerset, leaving just the grandchild. I took her home last Monday (200 miles to South Wales on the train) I returned home, again on the train past the badly flooded fields in Hereford only to find that the lightening had 'killed' the broadband hub again. No internet and no Barb for five days. I've been very sad, still back online again and ready to go. I hope that you have a really happy New Year and that the workshop dates are released soon.

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  40. We have not reached the post Christmas let down yet because we have not finished celebrating. Our youngest came home this weekend so we are doing Christmas # 3 on Sunday. Tree is still up, decorations are still up. No doubt everything will come down with a bump (possibly literally) on Wednesday when I 'undeck' the halls and pack everything away for another year. And yes it really is the third time we have had a Christmas celebration. One year we may make getting together for Christmas all at the same time!

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  41. Barbara I know exactly what you mean about the festivities, fun but frantic, enjoyable but exhausting. I feel that we all need a routine of sorts in our lives to give us focus, the tricky part is getting the balance right between work and play/rest. Romeo looks gorgeous! We have been pet free for a few years but agreed to take over ownership of a 16 month old cat on 2 January, he's called Noah and is very pretty but completely rules the home already!! x

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  42. I didn't bother getting a poinsettia this year because I know I just manage to kill them! However I have seen the most gorgeous silk one that looked so real that I was tempted to get that...put it away and bring it out when the tree comes out again next year!
    Having the family round makes it all worth the effort and although my family has got smaller this year I still want to do do the full Christmas affair as I like you just love it.
    Romeo looks very at home in front of the fire! Hope you are feeling a lot better now! Love and hugs to you xx

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  43. I'm with you Barbara, worth the work to have the family together. I so love reading your posts, have a good weekend x

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  44. Good evening Barbara, and I do agree with you that January is indeed a strange month...but saying that it is good to have a tidy , make a plan and recharge the batteries. I hope that you are feeling a bit better and that you have a good relaxing weekend...Hugs Jo. X

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  45. Wow! Those glasses gave me a scare, thought your cold had a weird side effect. I hate it when plant begin to die. My lemon tree gave me a lemon in the summer but only has a few leaves on twiggy branches. I hate to give up and throw it out but how long do you sit looking at twigs? Glad you can relax over Grace's health now and it's a pleasure to finally meet Romeo in the flesh after stamping him so many times on my cards. Xx

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  46. Wow! Those glasses gave me a scare, thought your cold had a weird side effect. I hate it when plant begin to die. My lemon tree gave me a lemon in the summer but only has a few leaves on twiggy branches. I hate to give up and throw it out but how long do you sit looking at twigs? Glad you can relax over Grace's health now and it's a pleasure to finally meet Romeo in the flesh after stamping him so many times on my cards. Xx

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  47. Hopefully rest and speculate the coming year is the order of January

    Mx

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  48. Catchup!! Sorry you felt poorly and glad you feel better. My turn too for every one here at Christmas, parents, children and grandchildren, hard work but a rare opportunity for everyone together!! How handsome is Romeo x

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  49. Thank you again for making me laugh. My plant looks exactly the same so I will wait and see what becomes of yours.

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  50. The plant looks like how we all feel after another hectic Christmas, but we soon recover (and I'm sure your plant will) after a bit of rest and recuperation, and of course we have all those lovely memories to last us through to next December when we will do it all again. Thanks for the silly picture, you should wear those next time your on the telly!

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  51. Hi Barb, missed reading this post yesterday, but we all make it through don't we, and the memories are precious. I am sure I will be doing the same thing next year. Love Romeo, he is gorgeous. Bx

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  53. I always suffer from the post Christmas blues. We spend time with the family, don't spend too much these days as we haven't the pennies but January is the one month of the year that really aggravates my depression.
    Enjoy the rest because you know you will happily and willingly being doing it all again in eleven months time lol! And as for those blooming poinsettias could never keep one alive long enough to get to January, usualy dead before New Years Eve. My mum had one this year and we have discovered out dog has an allergy with it - poor wee thing got an allergy rash and is still suffering a little, does with allergies, whatever next lol! xx

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  54. Hi Barbara I am 76a great gran and I have finally kept the pointsetia since nov £2 50 Asda secret keep it dry only water when it's v dry

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Thank you for your kind messages and I hope you get inspiration from my ramblings.

Barb x