Friday, 29 December 2017

Best Laid Schemes of Mice and Men

I have been away from sewing and from my blog for a few weeks now due to some health issues and  work and family commitments. I can't believe that it has been 2 months since I last wrote a post and in that time I have done very little sewing in comparison to what I had planned. I was reminded of the quote from Robert Burns' poem that I have used for the title of this post. 

"But, Mousie, thou art no thy-lane,

In proving foresight may be vain;
The best-laid schemes o' mice an' men
Gang aft agley,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!"

Robert Burns wrote these famous lines in his poem after he allegedly turned up a mouse's nest while ploughing a field. My plans have not ended quite so badly as the mouse in the poem but things certainly haven't gone smoothly.

Rainy airport on a cloudy morning
As I wrote in my last blog October was a very busy month. November began with a work trip to Aberdeen, which I was dreading because I don't like being away from my family overnight, but in the end I really enjoyed it. I flew from Birmingham to Aberdeen airport on a rainy, grey day, which was an experience for me. Flying high above the clouds, in the sunshine, was amazing. Because I was travelling on my own I met some fascinating people along the way. People talk to you when you are on your own in a way that they don't when you are travelling with your family. All the people I met were kind and helpful and shared their stories with me.

Gateway to Dyce Airport, Aberdeen
After the flight above the clouds, one of the highlights of my trip was to cross the station bridge at Montrose railway station and to suddenly see this amazing sunset over the lagoon.

Sunset over the lagoon at Montrose  
I had a good time on my trip despite my reservations but I was glad to be back home again.

Just one week after I came back from Scotland I started to have problems with my right eye. I was experiencing bleeds from my retina that looked just like skeins of black embroidery silk, which formed and dispersed within about 10 minutes. After a visit to eye casualty at the local hospital I learned that I was experiencing a "Posterior Vitreous Detachment". This happens when the jelly inside the eye becomes more liquid with age and looses its structure falling forward away from the retina. It seems this is a common occurrence as you get older affecting many people by the age of 75, but I had never heard of it happening to anyone, and I am nowhere near my 75th birthday! I had expected certain things to change as I got older, my hair has changed colour, my waist is not so thin but I never expected my eyes to start falling apart!! It was very scary to think that I might risk loosing my sight if my retina became damaged but it was also upsetting to be confronted with the fact that I must be getting old. Until this happened I had been dying my hair, rushing about and probably deluding myself that I was still young.

The doctor I saw at A&E told me not to do any bending or lifting for 2 weeks and as a result I put my sewing plans on hold. I often cut out on the floor and I bend forward when I am sewing by hand. I was frightened that this might bring back the symptoms I had experienced. In addition to this he advised me to sleep sitting up to encourage the floaters in my vision to settle and I found it very difficult to sleep like this. My eyes were just too tired to sew. 

Just as my eye seemed to settle I caught a virus that was going round at work. I have had a terrible cough for weeks which I am just beginning to get over.

All this co-incided with Christmas, one of the busiest times in my year...

So now you know why I have been away from my computer and my sewing machine for so long, but I am now feeling much better. Christmas has been a great time with my family. Our tree is up...

The turkey has almost been eaten. (I am making soup with the bones as I write this post)

Everyone had lots of presents and we are looking forward to the New Year.

It even snowed in December, which is really unusual in the UK.

Our garden in the snow

So Happy New Year to you all and I look forward to sharing some more sewing adventures with you in 2018.


  1. So glad to hear you are on the mend now Rosemary and you got a chance to spend some quality time with your family over Christmas.

    1. Thank you for your kind wishes, it's good to be back and feeling better. I hope you had a good Christmas and have a very happy New Year.