Tuesday, 10 December 2013


We're nearly out of the Garvo stuff that Tilda has been eating.  I don't want to get another bag because (a) she only eats part of it, (b) even Lotty and Poppy - who hoover up what Tilda leaves - don't eat the pellety bits and (c) there isn't anywhere local that stocks it.

I thought maybe some layers mash/crumb might work. Tilda could pick out the bits she wanted, and there wouldn't be any pellets for her to leave.

My usual stockist doesn't stock it, but would be able to get some.     Pets at Home, alledgedly, stock Ex Bat stuff and Smallholder range,   so I popped over there at 7pm to see if I could get a small back.  No.  I did manage to pick up a 5kg bag of Dodson and Horell layers mash - but it wasn't at all what I was expecting.  Instead of little pieces of food, it was a bag of dust.   Tilda stuck her beak in the pot, but rejected it very quickly.

Not much more I could do at the time, so I made a start on the Christmas cards. 

I know it's less and less fashionable to send cards.  I don't send many myself now,  usually (but not exclusively) I send them to people I haven't seen and won't see for ages,  just to say hello and that I'm thinking of them.

I found the box of blanks, and the bag with last year's received cards in, and I spent what seemed like forever cutting out the ones that were suitable for re-use, pairing them with some backing paper and a card.   I went through several Pritt sticks.  IN the end, I gave up with the sticking and concentrated on the cutting and matching.

This morning, I let my finger do some walking,  looking for layers mash/crumb.  And then I drove to a few places.      Nothing doing.   Eventually I found a place which stocked Marriages crumb, but I could feel through the bag that it was also very fine.

I came home, and resumed the card making.  When I got to the point of wishing I'd just bought cards instead, I stopped.    This year, I decided to print inserts and use scanned signatures (in different colours), rather than hand writing a "Merry Christmas" blah blah message in each one.   I cur paper to the reuquired sizes and printed off the required number. They they look quite effective, and the "to" bit will still be written by hand (by me).  My worktop is now covered in cards waiting to be assigned to people, a task I'll do this evening.

It would, of course, be a darned sight easier (and cheaper) just to buy cards. Or to not send cards at all  and to make a charity donation. 

I'm very happy to receive shop bought cards, and I'm equally happy if people don't send cards. I was trying to work out why I don't just do that anyway now. 

I think it's a combination of things:  I like the end result of my efforts -   I'm not a natural card maker,  and I am fully aware that they all look amateurish.  I llike that each card has taken some effort and a lot of thought, and don't mind at all that the recipients probably don't give them a thought.  The pleasure for me is in the achievement,  and in the occasional achievement of making that  special match between the cards I'm making and the intended recipient.   A cat one for my cat loving Auntie;  a cat one (in fact, the one they sent me last year) to particular friends;  that sort of thing.  

And I do like the fact that last year's cards get an extra year's life rather than just acting as kindling.

Will I do it next year?

Well, I've made those templates for the inserts now, so probably.

We'll see.

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