I was away on Cape Breton Island visiting my Dad, stepmom and brother and sister for my reading week, as we spent this Christmas with O's parents in Maine. My family and I had pretend-Christmas dinner and they even kept the Christmas tree up for me until the middle of February! We exchanged presents (I'm now the proud owner of my very own trifle dish - no more making it in huge bowls!) and I had a lovely time going for long walks in the woods and sitting in my Dad's greenhouse. I think I got more sun in a week than I had all winter. I gave my little sister a doll for Christmas (as per her request) and she named her Emily. Here's Emily chilling in the greenhouse:
She's made from a cloth over wire-armature body with paperclay head, hands and feet. She has mismatched glass eyes which look slightly crazy - they are from a lot of glass eyes I bought on ebay that I thought were pairs, but when they arrived several were mismatched and when I checked the listing I realized it said "for doll eye repair." So I had to get creative... (I told this story to my sister and she then repeated it word for word to everyone to whom she showed the doll - I call her 'rain girl' because she has an almost eerie memory for anything she hears...an eleven year-old tape recorder.)
While I was "on vacation" I read two uber-long Victorian novels for a class, wrote a paper and marked twenty (I took the train 24 hours each way, so that helped my put a serious dent in the reading.) As soon as I got back I handed it all in, went to some classes, then got in the car and went to my hometown of Toronto for a few days...not nearly as pretty as Cape Breton! We were visiting my aunt, who recently bought a house in Cape Breton that she's never seen based on our recommendation (gulp!)
It's a serious fixer-upper, but it was really cheap and has very good bones. We've agreed to help renovate over the next few summers and hope to move out there some day full-time...this way we would have a place to stay while we build our own place...someday! My aunt will use it in the summers.