I haven’t written for what seems a long time but in actuality is just over a month. There have been obvious reasons and more obscure reasons and am not sure if this will be a one-off post followed by a fallow period again.

I am living in jubilee, I cannot hold it in any longer, I have been so blessed over the last few weeks to have received gifts from very special people and an anonymous donor too. The minefield traveling continues:

No sooner than I think I have dotted my “eye” and crossed my “tea”  the bureaucrats want something else. I am not a paperwork queen so it has involved huge mileage gathering the pieces of information they require. Since January 3rd I have been waiting for an inspector to arrive. 

I am not financially embarrassed I just don’t have money for extras, I have learned new ways to be frugal and have increased the number I am feeding at weekends. Since October I have kept within my budget but January has proved fruitful:

Each four weeks I have been given four hundred euros to feed the family and the van. Diesel costs about fifty or sixty euros which leaves forty of fifty for food. 

Charles Dickens in David Copperfield had Mr Micawber give this sound advice:

 My other piece of advice, Copperfield, said Mr. Micawber, you know. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and, in short, you are for ever floored. As I am!  

I am pleased and chuffed to realise that this month I have a surplus of one hundred and fifty euros. It has helped that I spent this week hunkered down in snow covered cleaning mode. I have my shopping list for today and the cats and dog will have more spent on them than their human counterparts.

God has provided for me and my family, I have learned a new level of frugality in financial terms and am counting my blessings. There is a really old hymn that sums up how to do this. Fix my eyes on Christ, who he is, what he did, what he did for me and then look at my life at the thousands and thousands of blessings. Over at I am going to start naming them one by one.

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.


Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.


When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings. Wealth can never buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.


So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be disheartened, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.


Highest point: scrubbing my kitchen floor and solving the leak in the washing machine.I am not in debt, the bills are paid and I am discovering new depths of patience with civil servants.

1 Corinthians 10:13  No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.