Friday, March 24, 2023

 It has been a grey, wet day. We’ve been needing the wet – February was most unusually dry. But such weather doesn’t tempt me to even think of trying to get out. My hip is undoubtedly deteriorating. I’m not altogether sure I could get across the road to the garden, even on a fine day.


But I can knit. I have proceeded without incident attaching edging to the Shetland shawl. The first corner draws closer.


I saw Helen briefly this morning. I had conceived the idea that if we could come to some decision about how to deal with the Things in this house, it would be easier to think of how to deal with me, but she thought that would be All Too Much and we will have to leave the house ticking over for the time being. That is a strong reason for staying in it. It is getting on for a century ago, when my husband’s father died and his widow moved from a biggish house into a pleasant cottage nearby, in rural Sussex. She put a lot of furniture into store. She died without a will, in the early ‘50s. My husband took the things in store, his sister, who had been living with their mother and looking after her, the cottage and its contents.


A lot of what was in store is  big, brown furniture, all still with us. But some of it is more interesting – a Japanese clock here, a painted cabinet there. And there are books of some interest from the 1920’s. And the pictures my husband bought with a good eye over a long life. Are we to pack it all off to an auctioneer?  My four children must decide. I hope somebody will keep something, but they may not be able to afford to.


How fortunate we are in technology. My email won’t change wherever I go. We can still get together with Zoom. And I can take all the books I will ever want to read along in my iPad.


Wordle: My starters gave me a green and three browns. Oh, dear. I don’t like anagrams.  But I thought of a qualifying word quite soon. It’s not one that trips off the tongue very often. I typed it in not expecting much – but it was right. So, three for me. That was early in the morning. I thought maybe the slight oddity of the word would mean the others would struggle for longer, and I was encouraged in that thought when the next post, a four, came in from Thomas. But no – there were lots of threes, including the Americans, father and son. And Mark blew us all out of the water with a two. Alexander scored four like his son Thomas. That was some comfort.




  1. =Tamar9:23 PM

    My family will have a lot to deal with, but not so much furniture [except for one or two pieces of sentimental value] as books. I have a very large collection. And of course the yarn, but that will probably go to the thrift shop, whence much of it came. They might like some of the pictures.
    It is wet out today, what I call a sprinkle and the forecasters call a light rain. It has knocked down about half the ornamental cherry blossoms.
    Hooray for one quarter of the edging! May the other three go as smoothly.

  2. Anonymous11:10 AM

    These are important things to think about, Jean, and it is actually great that you are able to engage with them yourself and discuss things with family members. I am in the throes of emptying out my parents' former home in London (English law applied to the inheritance) and also my in-laws place in the west of Scotland (Scots law here which are you know is different from English when it comes to inheritance).
    Between five children and eleven adult grandchildren we have managed to amicably re-home virtually everything from the London place, and it will all be removed in the next week or so. Parents in law much more difficult as mother in law loved lots of stuff but none which appealed to anyone else in the family. There are some complicated calculations to make around inheritance tax/capital transfer tax/capital gains tax but the two main things we found useful were to remember were: one, the additional estate allowance for passing a parental property wholly on to descendants (I think it is children and grandchildren who qualify but one would want to check this).And two, that inheritance tax is only paid on estate OVER the tax-free limit and not on the whole estate value.
    You know where I am Jean, if you want to ask about any of our experiences, but as you have four wise and intelligent children of your own I don't imagine I can tell them anything new. We thought about renting out one property while one of the owners was still alive, or of someone in the family moving in and renting out their own place if that was more suitable......but that's a very personal thing.

  3. Anonymous12:13 PM

    In America thrift shops are being inundated with household goods - china, glassware, etc. because these days the younger generation is just not interested in them. I am told they want a simpler material life: Less things. More experiences. Is Scotland and all of Britain, for that matter, the same? Many parents are chagrined to be told their children aren’t interested in the heirloom silver, much treasured Chippendale furniture, etc. your children are older but what about your grandchildren? It would be interesting to see. Re Wordle - I wonder if there is any sociological interest in why, for example, so many minds jumped to the same conclusion you did regarding the possible anagram? If for no other conclusion than that we, as people - or at least Western civilization peoples - are really so much the same. Jean, you’ve roped me into Wordle with musings like that even if I don’t actually play it:),p. Chloe

  4. Anonymous12:15 PM

    The extra “p.” Was a typo. No other significance whatever. Chloe