Saturday, November 22, 2014

My Winter Work

I thought I'd write a blog post about what else I get up to during the winter months - my job on the ferry is only seasonal (April to the start of October) so I have to keep myself occupied for the rest of the year. There are very, very few year round paid jobs here (as tourism is really our main 'industry') so through the winter I try and find some voluntary/community work to keep me busy.

I've been a beach comber for as long as I can remember - always looking out for the interesting and unusual things on the beach, and part of that includes trying to leave the beach a better place than you found it. So for the past few years I've undertaken 'beach cleaning' through the winter months. It gets me out in the fresh air and working in an environment that I adore and where I feel comfortable and at home :)

I've been concentrating on just one beach so far this season - and today I finally am able to say that virtually ALL the rubbish down there is now bagged up! The total of bags filled is approximately fifty - but there also are all the things that are too big/awkward/heavy to put in rubbish sacks. This morning my lovely friend Jana went down there with me to bring all the sacks of rubbish, broken up lobster pots etc to one place on the beach, ready for collection.

It has taken me several weeks to get to this stage, working on my own up until this morning - having Jana's help for this last stage was amazing -- it would have taken me so much longer to lug the bags etc back to 'base' -- as there were two of us, we were able to use an old fish-box that had washed in on the tide and were able to load it up with two bags each time and carry them (and other pieces) back to 'base'.

Here are a few 'before' and 'after' photos to record the difference!!

you really need to click on the photos to properly see the difference my work has made.

 Jana took a couple of photos of all the rubbish together in the one place so I will put them on here when she uploads them to her computer - it was shocking to see it all together like that though - but hopefully we will get the local community together to get it up the side of the cliff and taken away.

Now that I've finished working on this beach (apart from going down maybe once a month to keep on top of whatever has washed in on the tide) I can move on to work on another beach! Our coastline is just so amazingly, breathtakingly beautiful and the least I can do is to collect the rubbish and try and do my bit to preserve that beauty.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

November update...again

Wow, I'm now up to 654 Etsy sales so the big '700' is creeping closer and closer! I doubt very much that I will reach that milestone by Christmas - really it'll be nice whenever it happens :)

I've got three craft fairs this month: the first one is next Sunday (23rd) in Portmagee, then I've got the one in the Tech in the village here the following Saturday and then the third is in Foilmore the next day. I need to start to get myself organised for them soon - I don't want to leave it all til the last minute like I usually do.

To date I've been REALLY good and haven't bought any more wool (since my mammoth shopping sprees in England a month ago) - I've got six big lidded plastic boxes of yarns so realistically I don't need to buy any more, I've got plenty to keep me going for months, it's just that when I get an email from BlackSheepWools or whoever to say that they are offering free postage/15% off etc etc I get so tempted...

I know I will be buying wool when we're in Germany next month so in the meantime I'm trying hard to be good :)

this is what I've been working on in the last month - some of these have sold already (yay!) -- I've been trying to work on some 'stock' so that I have plenty for people to choose from at craft fairs and in my Etsy shop.

I've also been making lots and lots of cotton scrubbies -- if I have the space I'm going to try selling them at the craft fairs -- they might make nice 'stocking filler' gifts??

Saturday, November 8, 2014

November Update

In loving memory of my wonderful mother-in-law, Christina Hill.

I'm just so glad that we went over to visit her in her care home last month and that I got to see her looking healthy and happy in her new home. She had a new lease of life in the last few months - having constant company and always someone there to chat with and her quality of life increased so much.

She died suddenly on Wednesday, 5th November at the great age of 93.