Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Christmas wrap

I like to take early morning snaps of my stall set-up before the crowds arrive.

Phew! A whirlwind of back to back Christmas markets for the past five weeks is over!
And, I'm exhausted.
Near sell-outs at every market left me gob-smacked and ecstatic that people oohed and aahed, and happily purchased my wares.
And yet devastated, knowing that I would be working into the wee hours at the beginning of each week glazing madly for the kiln, to ensure a fully stocked stall the following weekend.
Even though there were plenty of items in boxes under the table to replenish, at each day's end, the boxes were practically empty!

A meltdown after the third market, had me ingesting copious amounts of coffee and chocolate to get me through. In fact, this was my mantra during the last few weeks...

Never in my wildest dreams did I anticipate this. Clearly. As, at the beginning of it all, I honestly thought I had made enough to stretch over five weekends. My studio was overflowing!
This has made me realise that if I am to take on the same amount of markets next year, then, I'll need to begin Christmas production just after Easter! That is, if I'm to be as fortunate with sales next year.
It's been a learning curve for sure.
And, I'm not complaining - I'm very grateful indeed.
Just, weary.

It's not over yet, one more to go. The big summer holiday market on the coast is on in two weeks. And, I'm still in production mode.
No rest for the wicked, as they say ;)

I've thought often about my favourite blogs here in blogland. And, sad that I've missed so many posts. I hope to catch up on reading what everyone has been up to the past month or so.

It's been important that Jack gets his walks, and that hubby and I catch up over coffee and short drives around the mountain when we could.
Hubby and son have been very patient with my "absence", and our boy has provided delicious meals regularly when he is home. What a joy.

When I could remember my camera, I've tried to capture micro moments in time, and would like to share a few recent random snapshots...

We have been blessed with glorious weather on market days, which ensured great turnouts.

A peaceful return to quiet after a bustling twilight market at a local racecourse.

Although, there have been some chilly weekdays when we've asked each other, "isn't this meant to be mid-summer?"
But, I'm not complaining. Cool weather, instead of blistering heat, is welcome anytime :)

And, there have been warm, sultry days which brings the critters inside.
After shaking out our bedding one morning, this little fellow fell on the floor.

Even though his sting isn't (apparently) much worse than a bullant's, I'd rather not test the theory - something about being grasped by pincers and lashed from the hypodermic-like tail end, gives me shivers.
He was removed promptly, and safely, to a far corner of the garden and scuttled under some bark.

Perfect partners - roses and rustic rails.

This garden sculpture made me think of my full focus and current tunnel vision.

Hello kitty.

When I spotted this sweet silver tabby sunning herself in a local (stock-feed) shop window, I had to go over and say hello.
I know that her official title must be "resident mouser", but I couldn't help feeling that all she wanted was company and to play.

She was a friendly wee thing, and I wished I could could rescue her and bring her home and lavish her with cuddles. But, after a while, she settled down and seemed content.

Though, my heart went out to her all the same.

Great coffee, and occasional breakfasts on a café balcony have been much looked forward to treats, and fuel for the day.

Jack believes his job is "taste tester" whenever we go out.

Hard to resist that face, isn't it?

All in all, it has been a great wrap up to a wonderfully productive year. I am so grateful to the Universe. Truly grateful.

And so, I want to wish you all a very heartfelt, happy Christmas and a safe, cheer-filled holiday season.
May your days indeed, be merry and bright, wherever you are in this great wide world.

Yule Dog

See you in 2014!


  1. I have missed you, have hoped you were going well and hoped that you were getting some REST. And I see that you were having a fine and productive time and NO REST. I hope you can take it a bit more easily soon. And I am not in the slightest bit surprised that people love your work. I smile at my fridge magnets every day - and you were right, they are, so far, Jazz proof.
    I loved the snapshots of your day - and the irresistable Yule dog.
    Take as much care of yourself as you can. Happy Christmas, and a wonderful, productive and peaceful New Year.

    1. Thanks so much EC. I've missed getting my gorgeous garden fix at your blog. In fact, I thought of you when I took the photo of the roses and wondered how you and your garden were :)
      So glad to hear your magnets are still going strong... a great endorsement. Thanks Jazz!

      Wishing you, SP, Jazz and Jewel also a peaceful and happy Christmas season. Stay safe xx

  2. Well done on all of that work, Vicki! Most excellent ... and how awesome that your gorgous clayness is so popular.

    Love love love the pics of that gorgeous puss and of course the most gorgeous Jack.

    Happy Christmas to you and yours.

    1. Thank you Sue!
      I hope you too have a relaxing Chrissie and a very safe, fulfilling and exciting 2014.
      Take care :)

  3. Great to hear you've had such good sales at the markets. I'd say definitely start your Christmas production straight after Easter.
    I hope you soon get a few days to sit and put your feet up.
    Merry Christmas.

    1. Hi River, yes, I'm looking forward to 5th January - the day after the next market. I'll be having a long lie in, that's for sure :)
      Wishing you a merry festive season and all the best for 2014.

  4. I'm still running, Vicki, I feel like the White Rabbit "I'm late, I'm late..." I would have wanted to rescue that darling kitty, too. Can't be much of a life being a resident mouser in a feed store. Love the photo of the roses and fence, and I'm so glad you've had some cool days. Hope your Christmas was (is) merry and filled with blessings, my friend!


    1. Yes, poor little kitty. You and me both, Victoria - we thought the same.
      Cats should be by a warm fire in winter and under a shady tree in summer, and lavished with love and cuddles by their families all day every day.
      I hope you have the chance now to rest a while by your beautiful hearth in your sweet home on your magical mountain.
      Merry Christmas, dear Victoria. xx

  5. the little kitty made me sad. i hope his people are good to him. he looks healthy at least. but that little paw raised in the window... as if "help me." oh my.

    the stupendous success of all your hard hard hard work . . . well! i'm so proud i could burst! i think the little display tree in your stall is genius. and i like the blue. it's just beautiful v. and next year will be fantastic too. ALL those people will remember you and come back. and they'll tell all their friends!

    and even as busy as you are and so exhausted . . . you have still given us this gorgeous post!
    and the very best part. 3 pictures of jack!
    give my beloved blue boy a hug. tell him it's from me. i think he'll remember.

    and you are not THAT wicked. GET SOME REST! LOLOL.
    and yes you do have two very great men. but they're the lucky ones too. to have YOU.
    merry christmas dearest one. from your other mom across that shining sea.
    xoxo ♥ . . . furever.

    1. Awww Tam, always such great comments and support.
      Jack has his Christmas hugs delivered... he remembers ;)

      I had a chance to relax a while on Christmas day, and watched a couple of great BBC ghost stories. That was fun!
      Hope you're enjoying The Monarch.

      Back to work for me now.

      Take care little wren, and stay warm.
      Talk to you in the New Year :)
      Furever xx

  6. Vicki, dear friend, I wanted to pop back in and thank you for your lovely comment over on my blog and to wish you "Happy New Year!" I hope it's one filled with blessings, joy, delights and all of your favorite things. I just delivered your kisses to Mrs. Rose and her family and she sent kisses back to you and said she wished there were more people like you in this world. Give darling Jack lots of kisses and hugs from me!



    1. Thank you so much for your warm wishes and blessings, Victoria :)
      I only wish that I could deliver a kiss to Mrs Rose in person, darling that she is.


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