Actually it's the 6th ~ 9.30pm because I was watching Mary Berry and her visit to another castle ~ a very successful format ~ I've been busy organising a pre-Christmas surprise event for friends but can't tell you what exactly the plan is in case any of them read my blog ~ I'm so blind I really can't write cards ~ the family will get computer greetings and that's it for this year which could well be my last ~ I'm too old for Christmas ~having said that, cards keep coming ~ I am very touched.   S's delivery which always takes an hour to deal with ~ PMQs and they get viciously aggressive with snide remarks crashing across the Chamber ~ for once I managed without a flop though I made a hot water bottle and snuggled down on the sofa as usual but head whirling so gave up and sorted out some stuff in the small attic ~ the story of the stair window which Steve has made for me on parchment-type paper, and framed, is very well-positioned right there alongside the very window in question ~ whoever gets the house after me (and it would be great if it were my own family as was recently suggested by Will) it must be kept there till Kingdom come ~ who would have thought that a small stair window could have a history of its own, but there you are !   My reading is getting very slow and that's with the Kindle turned up to its largest text ~ it's a wonder I can still do this ~ it gets harder every day ~ tomorrow I go to the Audiology Clinic for ear test ~ thank goodness even though I only have to get to Whitby Hospital, Patient Transport are coming for me with a wheel chair to push me down to the ambulance and back afterwards ~ I really am becoming a wreck !   The kids say I've always been deaf ~ that they could get a YES out of me when they knew very well I had not heard the question ~ "We're going to the baths, Mummy"   "Can I go and call for Elizabeth ?"   "It's OK if we sleep in the tent, isn't it ?   You said we could stay up and watch Dad's Army . . . "   But they all survived as loving and successful people and happy and in strong relationships ~ now that Richard has come back into the family, I feel I didn't make too bad a job of it, of motherhood 

Friday evening ~ 9.30pm ~ definitely colder but bright and dry ~ all going to plan for Tuesday event which I can't say more about yet but it already looks as if it is going to be even better than hoped ~ Peter and Margaret are next door for a couple of nights ~ getting up their strength for their enormous family gathering ~ 17 I think they said, including some from Portugal and others from Spain ~ John came in to repair letter box on front door so that's a blessing ~ the temporary one was letting fierce draughts in, stroig enough to set the door curtain blowing about ~ Ellen came in with Martin and they lent their hands to the Tuesday Event ~ if all come there should be 10 or 12 of them ~ the yard is looking fabulous with all Mary's lights ~ 2000 of them, tiny blue bulbs covering the whole yard, all our little gardens ~ Mary said she only intended to get a string of 200 lights but somehow ended up with all this lot ~ word from the Bank that the Whitby branch is closing ~ fortunately I do online banking and when I need cash one of my good friends will sttill be able to get it out of machine I hope ~ incredible ~ all these Banks closing down ~the Sanders who built this house in 1750 started with a Sail Cloth Facory in what is still known as Sanders Yard, and later opened a bank, Sanders Bank ~ one of the hotels actually has a Sanders bank note on display ~ the family went from strength to strength as long as the original Jonathan was in charge with whaling boat, grocery wholesale business as well as the bank and the factory already mentioned ~ Old Quaker Jonathan's sons seem to have inherited their father's enterprising spirit and became wealthy with among other things a property up on St Hilda's Terrace ~ still the poshest part of town, this terrace of elegant four storey development, pure Georgian, of course ~ before that, around 1795 the Sanders brothers had built Foresters Court right behind our cottages and strangely looking out onto bare stone walls which at that time had no windows looking out on them though before long the new owner of this house did get permission to knock a window through on the stairs as long as it was of frosted glass and would not open ~ I've already told you this but I can't believe any of you are paying attention ~ this i window is the subject of the placard that Steve brought in the other day and hung up on the stair well alongside the disputed windows ~ I'll copy the text out here shortly but that's enuff for tonight . . .

Saturday afternoon ~ the bulb must have gone on the electric fire so lifeless ~ phoned Keith as I know he will do jobs over the weekend and blow me, he and his wife were hoping to come over tomorrow morning just for a friendly call ~ he insisted he will not charge for such a small job soi I can let her choose Tuesday special in stead ~ long chat earlier with Sue Harty ~ she seems to be coping well following Nick's death ~ she will come on Tuesday too ~ I think it is going to work rather well ~ jolly cold though no snow in spite of forecast ~ 4.30 and I'm going to have a bath before the evening sets in . . .

8pm ~ bitterly cold even with the heating on and it has been on all day ~ I thought the pain in my finger might be arthritis though I have no experience of either that or rheumatism ~ the pain is really frightful and if I straighten the joint either by accident or design I really have to screech ~ now that I'm housebound I cannot ask the doctor to call for a sore finger ~ if it is damaged the longer it is left the worse it will get ~ not sure what to do ~ strange having no fire in the sitting room ~ I usually have it on for cheerfulness rather than warmth with just the flame effect ~ only a couple of times have I actually had the heat on too ~ how kind of Keith to come tomorrow, a Sunday ~ and to bring his wife with him ~ all very interesting ~ last night Will rang from Germany to apologise for not sending a birthday card ~ for heaven's sake ~ I don't even know when their birthdays are ~ all well with Vera, and her Mummy who is 92 and full of beans ~ yet something is wrong ~ he said I'll put it in a letter ~ I can't explain over the phone ~ very odd ~ if all three adults are fine, the only other sorrow might be over one or all of their cats ~ maybe he'll put it in an email.