It's been a tough week. I've been without a car as Jay's conked out on Monday and he's using mine whilst his languishes in a garage somewhere.
By Thursday lunchtime I could feel my sanity beginning to slip. I usually take Joe to playgroup twice a week and he has three hours in nursery on a Wednesday morning. He's a placid, good-natured little boy most of the time with a huge appetite and is as reliable as clockwork for sleeping through the night and taking afternoon naps.
But Thursday morning playgroup seems to turn him into a demon child. Disruptive, contrary, whiny. Those two hours are awful: tiring and embarrassing. Yes, I know he's only two. And I know we're extremely lucky he's usually so good. But this week I'd had enough. Having to push him uphill all the way home, fuming at his behaviour and the drizzle and the lack of buses, I dwelt on how tired I feel at the moment - balancing grieving for my mum and caring for Joe can be tough sometimes.
Of course, once he'd had a nap and I'd hit my 'reset' button all was well again. But yesterday I bought a bottle of prosecco to celebrate it being Friday. After One Of Those Weeks a celebration was in order.
Actually, Joe's grandparents came by yesterday and took care of him for a few hours while I made my escape. I had to stay local due to the car situation so went into Ramsbottom, our local town. It's only a mile or so down the road. But what with the whole Black Friday thing I had absolutely no desire to head anywhere that sells electrical goods. Who needs trampling for the sake of a cheap TV?
It was another murky day, but still festive with the lights up. I wandered around and ate a cone of (dripping-fried) chips. To keep out the cold. I also went into the library and looked at sections I've never had to opportunity to browse before, like crafts and fashion. I even sat at a table for a while and flicked through a book or two whilst a woman nearby tapped away at a laptop and muttered to herself.
Then I found some little charity shop treats: a folk-style patterned shawl and a painted glass bowl and matching jug. The glass is in lovely condition and possibly from the 1950s. It probably spent its life displayed in a cabinet. I do love a bit of painted glass, especially when there's gold on it.
Today we went back again to buy our fruit and vegetables at the market. I stocked up on satsumas and they had those long pointy red peppers at five for a pound so I picked some up. They can be done in the oven later in the week.
Christmas trees are appearing everywhere: above each shop (and even the garage), for sale at the market - a bit soon for me but they still looked nice - and inside the signal box at the station.
It may be too early for trees and decorating (and card writing) but we did order a capon and a ham at the butcher. There's something a bit Dickensian about doing that.
Tomorrow we're off to a craft and vintage fair (this one). Maybe we'll pick up a few more gifts. I agree with Bee, who commented on my last post: a slow December is my pace of choice. Making lists, gathering things here and there... far less stressful than a last-minute panic. Although that'll probably happen too.
Enjoy the weekend.