Wednesday, 30 October 2013


It is always good to leap from one's bed knowing that TODAY is to be a day of GREAT PURPOSE. The sun is up, the sky is dazzling blue. The clock change at the weekend has afforded us a bit of extra light in the morning. I am a morning person. This light is not to be wasted. At some point over night, a spirit of determination and endeavour has infiltrated my mind. I am called to attend to things with a great purpose. (Slight confusion when the great porpoise arrived at the crack of dawn, but all sorted by 6.35 - phew!)

And so it is that I sit at the kitchen table now, having a bit of a break after achieving 4 hours of splendid purpose. I could say that this grand purpose was brought on by watching an episode of OCD Cleaners  last night. Gosh, that was an eye-opener. One lady spent upwards of £800 a year on bleach! Bleach?! And another said she didn't have any friends because she spent pretty much all day every day cleaning her house, but then saw a peculiar silver lining to this by declaring she didn't want any friends anyway because they would only want to visit, and then they would bring dirt and germs into the house and she'd have to clean it again. 

She should do what I do...make 'em stand on the doormat and steam clean them before admitting entrance. JOKING! Although I do love my steam cleaner...hmmmm...I wonder...

Anyway, the obsessive cleaning people were pitched headlong into houses that hadn't seen an anti-bacterial wipe, duster or vacuum cleaner for upwards of 5 years. The people in these houses at least had lives, I thought. And seemed very cheerful. Of perhaps it was a case of having to laugh or else they would cry into their three-inch deep dust encrusted soft furnishings. Either way, there was a great deal of shuddering occurring on both sides of the equation, and thus it was that I decided I really ought to defrost the freezer.

The freezer gets done twice a year. I don't know if this is OCD or sluttish, but it needed doing because I could no longer get into the ice cube tray. Not physically - good grief. Get a grip will you? I mean, there was more ice than need be in the ice cube tray, and besides, Christmas is on the way and soon a frozen goose will be needing a home. But for a few weeks now, I have been trying to empty the freezer prior defrosting, but PEOPLE keep putting things in it like bread and uncooked croissants and ice cream and smoked haddock.

Well, I finally managed to get the contents down enough to be housed in the cool box by coming up with some interesting evening meal combinations this week, and thus I set about the defrost. Flora Bijou Mybug tried to help. Never defrost a freezer with a kitten. Use a spatula instead.

And whilst I was dodging back and forth chipping at the ice with the spatula, I thought I might as well clear out the kitchen cupboards. Stupidly, I did a cutlery count whilst cleaning out the cutlery drawer. Of the 18 each of knives, forks and spoons that should have been present I now have 17 knives, 13 forks and 11 spoons and NONE of them make up a matching six place set. I tried to be Buddhist about it...

'But, my child,' said Buddhist Me. 'You can only use one knife, one fork, one spoon at a time. Surely there is enough here to match your simple needs?'
'Indeed,' said Me Me. 'But that relies on me eating alone all the time.'
'You are but one person. You are responsible only for yourself,' said Buddhist Me.
'Not at flippin' Christmas I'm not,' said Me Me.
'There is more to life and to being than having matching cutlery,' said Buddhist Me.
'Oh really?' said Me Me.
'And one day you will realise this,' said Buddhist Me, who was edging away because I think she was sensing Me Me was feeling slightly tetchy.
'Not likely to happen this side of 2014,' said Me Me. And thus the Cutlery Angst continues.

I extended the great cleaning purpose to the hallway where I pulled the shoe cupboard away from the wall and gave it a jolly good going over. I did a big pile of ironing. I went on-line and completed my Christmas Shopping#feelingfestivesmug. I sorted out some books to go to the charity shop, and some very old clothes to go to the clothing bank. I made a bit more of the Advent Bunting, because at the rate I am going it won't be ready until Christmas 2014. 

And the freezer is nearly defrosted. I have achieved an empty cupboard in the kitchen that shall henceforth be known as The Festive Cupboard and people had better not fill it up with anything else just because it is currently empty and therefore a convenient dumping ground for other tat. It is a cupboard-in-waiting. I am thinking crackers and nuts.

I also have a wet floor floor because Flora Bijou Mybug took it upon herself to play skittles with chunks of falling ice. 

All in all a purposeful morning. 

And this afternoon I am planning an afternoon birthday tea for Saturday because Saturday is my birthday and some how people got invited to an open-house afternoon tea which I suppose means they will wanting to be fed afternoon tea delicacies like posh sandwiches and posh cakes. Hangers on will be treated to a fish 'n' chip supper Strictly Come Dancing evening.

If you are in the area, please come along! Whilst the cutlery lasts.

Monday, 28 October 2013

A Special Post Card

 It has been a funny day, one way or another. A very spiritual day. The storm, when it came to my part of the world, wasn't as horrendous as the forecasters suggested, although I realise Kent may have got off lightly compared to other parts of Britain. But then I remember the Great Storm of '87 and the destruction that one caused, and there lies my benchmark.

I sent off more postcards this morning - Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Sweden, Finland and Netherlands. And I received two postcards, too. One from a French lady living in Germany, and another from the Netherlands, and it is this one that I want to share with you, because it did cause me to come over all teary-eyed.

'Hello,' said the writer of the card. 'My name is Jolanda, I'm 34 years old and I live in the Netherlands. I sent you a very special card. It's very old. My mother-in-law has kept this card for many years and it always brought a smile on her face. Now she's very ill and she's 'cleaning up' her house. She asked me to sent this card to someone special. I've had it for a while now and when I read your profile I thought it had to go to you. I hope it will bring a smile to your face too.'

Well, as you can imagine, I was completely overcome by this random act of kindness from a complete stranger. I sent Jolanda a message back via the Post Crossing website, thanking her and asking that she pass on my thanks and best wishes to her mother-in-law. And that yes, this card will make me smile, too. Instantly, because of the thoughts of its sender, it has become one of my treasures.

Moments like this bring back to me how lovely most people are. You read the papers and watch the news and mostly it is all about war and murder, and cruelty and injustice. But actually, don't you think that is the fault of just a few humans? It is so important to remember that MOST people are kind and warm and just, well, good.

I felt humbled. And a bit weepy. And after a few weeks of feeling unsettled, this card brought me peace. Tonight, when I practise a healing meditation (and no doubt get my legs in a pins and needles vague approximation of a Lotus position tangle - I have discovered that there are such things as meditation cushions and stools which I might buy one of if only to save me from a deep vein thrombosis) I shall use this beautiful card as my focus. 

It can be only a good thing.

I hope your evening is calm and peaceful, too. And if you fancy joining in a healing meditation with me, wherever you are, I shall be linking in at 7.45 G.M.T.

Friday, 25 October 2013


Several times this week I have thought I ought to write a blog. I mean, I wouldn't want regular readers to think I had succumbed to some kind of lurgy, let alone allow them to have a few days of peace and quiet from my sometimes incessant ramblings. That would NEVER do. 

And yet every time the thought of Blog has arrived in my mind, do you know what has happened? It has passed straight through, that is what has happened. Because I, yes me, of chatterbox brain and restless mind, has been exploring and trying (haha!) to learn about and practice the art of Proper Meditation. (And by 'proper' I mean not just sitting on the floor in a darkened room with my eyes closed wondering if I have time to put in a load of washing, or did I remember to pick up peanut butter when I went shopping, which is what usually happens but proper 24 hours a day mindful meditation that adheres to a Buddhist/ Yogic ideology.)

I have been reading about mandalas and yantras, Buddist masters and mantras. I have been attempting to bend my legs into the Lotus position (and not doing too badly I have to say) and I have been keeping a meditation diary. And the phrase that keeps appearing in the various sources I have been a-reading is 'When thoughts arrive in your mind, as they invariably do, then don't let them dwell, let them pass on through.' (I made it into a bit of a poem so I would remember.) I suppose it is a bit like avoiding mental constipation.

And this has been difficult, because there is always stuff going on in my head, and I didn't realise how much stuff until I started trying to keep those thoughts passing through and not plonking themselves in the beanbags of my mind for a nice cosy chat like they usually do. 'Come on!' I have been telling them. 'Keep on moving. There's no room for you here. And definitely no cocoa and biscuits.'

It is all to do with this change in life direction I have been feeling. I have been more focused and purposeful with my healing list. I have allocated it a special notebook (padded pink fabric cover and lovely handmade paper) and a proper ink pen with which to write in it in a meditative kind of way. Flora helped me fill the ink pen from the ink pot. It didn't go well and I was forced to ask her to desist in her efforts and go and annoy someone else instead. I am afraid I wasn't very Buddhist minded when I told her this but it has only been a couple of weeks so far. 

Of course, other stuff has been happening, too. The new baby grandchild was on the receiving end of his/her first scan this week and is developing in a nicely responsible way. I had a spot of fun with a persistent telephone cold caller who was insistent he wanted to discuss the car accident I'd had in the last two years.

'What accident would that be then?' said I.
'The one you've had in the last two years,' said he.
'Could you be more specific?' said I.
'No,' said he. 'The Data Protection Act prevents me from doing that.'
'So,' said I, 'you can't tell me about a car accident I have had in the last two years because you are safeguarding my own data from me?'
'Yes,' said he (although he was starting to sound a bit confused at this point because I was not sticking to the script.)
'Can I tell you,' I said, 'that I haven't had a car accident for 28 years?'

He hung up. Point to moi, I think!

And I have been in a reading frenzy, finishing three books this week. And a writing frenzy, picking up again with my Minerva Thing novel AND sending postcards hither and thither across the globe for my new-found Post Crossing Hobby. I have sent and received 36 postcards in the last ten weeks. It has been very lovely. I am running out of wall space.

And so I shall continue my progress along the path of Mindful Meditation. Birthday coming up next week. Life goes on. 

Thursday, 17 October 2013

October Cat Fest

I apologise for this VERY poorly filmed video clip, but you have to understand I was wrestling with a sofa full of cats AND trying to angle the i-pad without putting my finger over the lens AND trying to keep it up the right way, too. Failed on all accounts, really, but I showed the clip to Heather and she was suitably amused by it (although she did have to watch it head cocked at a jaunty angle) so either a) it is an okay and slightly amusing clip, or b) my daughter is actively encouraging me to make a public fool of myself. Which is highly unlikely.

So, neck braces at the ready...and here we go...

Monday, 14 October 2013

My Knight In Shining Armour

Isn't it nice when your man takes charge of a situation? Especially when he manages to beat you to a scathing remark, thereby saving you the embarrassment of coming over like a grumpy old harridan?

Today, having managed to synchronise our day off, Andy (aka 'The Knight') and I went forth across the kingdom to visit Canterbury 1) because we haven't been for a long time and 2) I had an urge to visit C & H Fabrics because I am going to have a go at making a Bunting Advent Calendar (I know - I can barely contain my excitement either) and needed some suitable seasonal fabrics. (Notice I didn't say 'Christmas!' Bum, I said 'Christmas!' Twice! Sigh...)

On the way, we did a detour to a Healing Retreat where I am hoping to begin a 2 year accreditation course in December. We couldn't go in because Monday is the Healing Clinic Day and it is therefore closed to public visitors, but at least I know where it is situated.

Anyway, we got to Canterbury, had a quick stop at Chives which is the independent cafe upstairs at one of the Waterstones, and does excellent lunch food and cakes etc, then Andy and I parted company for about an hour so I could visit M & S and C & H, and he could visit numerous video game stores and second hand bookshops, thereby avoiding boring each other to tears with each other's shopping preferences.

We rendezvoused at Lakelands where we got a little excited at the new range of Doctor Who muffin cases, ice cube trays and Dalek cake moulds. That was until we discovered the cake mould would produce a lying down Dalek and not a standing up Dalek as the picture would have us believe, so the manufacturers might want to reconsider their product packaging because we considered it to be misleading, but luckily we prised the packaging open to have look. (Other shoppers who did not have the foresight do this might well have been disappointed when they got home and discovered the hideous, flat-back Dalek truth.) We left clutching purchases of a new oven thermometer, the previous one having met with a melting moment end down the back of the oven in the gas flames of hell after Andy attempted to put a loaf in the oven via the 'fling it in' method, plus a pack of 500 greaseproof paper tin liners because you can never have enough.

Back to the park and ride then, and a quick pop into the pet store to get three-for-two kitten food offer for FBM because now she is growing very fast and ain't half getting through the (expensive) kitten food, filters for the kitty water fountain, then over to the bargain basement store to get cheapy cat litter, and a bucket o' meal worms for Primrose and Daisy. 

'And now to lunch!' said Andy.

And we stopped in at a garden centre on the way home because although the service is tortuous, the ambience is nice.

I ordered an egg and cress sandwich. I specifically did not have eggs for breakfast this morning because I knew I was going to have an egg and cress sandwich for lunch. I had, in fact, got myself all egg and cress hyped. Andy went for his usual tuna mayo baguette, and because we are dining light this evening (soup) I also had a bowl of wedges and Andy had a bowl of fat chips, because, as he said, 'One can never have enough potato-based products.'

Whilst we were waiting for our order to arrive (as I said, this place is notoriously slow at bringing food, but that is okay because it gave us chance to discuss Andy's planned blockbuster novel) a kitchen person arrived.

She said,'I have just been informed that we do not have any egg mayonnaise. Was there anything else you liked on the menu that I could bring you instead?'

Now, the sandwich options for vegetarians on the menu were the aforesaid unavailable egg and cress, and the bog standard cheese. I said, 'Well, I suppose it will have to be cheese, unless you have any other vegetarian options?'

And she said, 'I could do prawn. Most vegetarians eat fish.'

And before I could respond, Andy said, in a very no-nonsense and taking-charge kind of way, 'NO THEY DO NOT!' 

I don't know who was more surprised - me or the lady from the kitchen. Andy hasn't been that forceful since 11 years ago when he proposed to me by saying, 'I am trying to propose to you. Will you please shut up!?' It is usually me who holds the reins of confrontation in our partnership. It was all a bit unsettling, but a bit nice, too.

Anyway, the order duly arrived. The kitchen lady tried again to persuade me from my vegetarian ways by giving me Andy's tuna mayo baguette. I ate my cheese sandwich hoping I wasn't going to find a prawn head secreted inside in an act of culinary revenge and I dipped my wedges in mayonnaise. 

Andy said, 'Can I have one of your wedges?' And he took one. And then he said, 'You can have one of my chips in return.' And I said, 'If I wanted chips I would have asked for chips, wouldn't I?' and thus the reins of confrontation were returned to their rightful owner.

Then we went home. On the way we were subject to a mini bout of road rage from a (and I believe this to be the correct term, please excuse the rudeness) 'knob-head' in a car which was advertising a local fitness club. I looked it up on the Internet when I got home and his profile confirmed his knob-headedness. Still, I expect someone loves him. Bless.

And now I sit in my arty-crafty writing room, staring out the window at a stupid neighbourhood cat that is stuck in the netting fence of our chicken run. Primrose is sounding the alarm. The Knight in Shining Armour is in his way to sort it all out...

Sunday, 13 October 2013

No News Week

Well, it has been a funny old week in many a way. Not in a 'I met a clown in the supermarket and his trousers fell down and out fell a frozen chicken,' funny old week way (although that would have been quite funny, except that I find clowns very disturbing and freakish) but more a shifting of thinking kind of way. Philosophical, if you like. And can spell it.

I decided to avoid news, you see. World news, local news, TV news, newspaper news. For a whole week I had no idea what was going on beyond the activities within home and work. And even then I wasn't wholly sure what was happening there. I put the daily newspaper money in a pot and have thus accumulated three fine English pounds in loose change. I have decided to purchase some new pants with this accumulation because a couple  of my current pairs are, like the change, a tad loose too; why, one pair managed to make it down to mid-thigh this week AND I was wearing trousers at the time, so they DEFINITELY need to go.

And did I miss knowing what was going on in the world? No, I did not! I have to say I capitulated a little on Friday and bought the Kent Messenger then wished I hadn't for two reasons: 1) it was full of doom and gloom and advertisements for booking up workplace Christmas do's (sorry, CT - that is x3 now) and 2) I could have saved £1.10 and bought an extra pairs of pants.

And there was some confusion yesterday morning over egg on toast and Radio 4 because stuff had been going on in the world that I knew nothing about and so I had to keep asking Andy about stuff that was sounding VERY important which actually turned out to be not very important at all, so I think I shall continue with the no news experiment and save myself a lot of unnecessary worry. 

Some might say this is a BAD thing. That as a responsible citizen of the world I should make it my duty to keep up with the goings on. I say that if you saw me this morning carrying a kitten in the hood of my favourite woolly hoody jumpy then you would retract all accusations of responsibility immediately and allow me scoot through a life of no news in my own ignorant is bliss bubble because it would be safer for everyone involved.

I have also being doing a lot of reading and, as Andy sweetly puts it, 'book learnin'' about processes of meditation, Buddhism, Yogic development, and a lady called Alice Bailey who did a massive amount of spiritual work with a guide she called 'The Tibetan.' In fact, I spent most of yesterday in the company of Alice Bailey (not literally - she has long since gone to a better place, and I don't mean the Lake District.) And because of the 'random links' nature of the interwebbly, one piece of reading lead to another and another and I came to the conclusion that Alice Bailey (and not Alice abseiled as autocorrect has just tried to tell me!) was an interesting character who has fallen foul of quite a bit of misinterpretation causing some considerable controversy amongst those who don't believe in her ideas. 

Now I am not saying I believe everything she wrote. And from what I have read so far it seems neither did she when she wrote some of it. Yesterday, five hours of research barely grazed the surface skin on the little finger of the enormous hand of the giant of the stuff she did, and of her life and work. I have a lot more interesting reading to do. But what I am saying is that some of her detractors jumped to some seemingly unfair conclusions. My opinion, of course. To which I am entitled as much as the next person. 

It does make you THINK though. (I am also thinking it is jolly wet and windy outside and I am glad I don't have to be out in it, and that there is a batch of scones in the tin downstairs and isn't it funny that Andy, who is making bread, has just told me he has had to make up a hot water bottle to help the bread rise because it is so chilly!). Odd, isn't it, how some random connection, arising from nowhere, suddenly fires such an interest? But good though. It is always good to be learning. 

And I am also thinking I wish Flora Bijou Mybug would stop licking my jumper with such gusto because she is eventually going to cough up one enormous woolly ball and it'll be me who finds it with my bare feet.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Cats Can't Do, Cats Can Do

Cats can't:
1) fill fountain pens with ink
2) hang washing on an airer in a tidy and economical way, preferring to arrange it flat on the floor (easier to sleep on)
3) survive in fridges when on a leftover nibble hunt (What is white and meows to be let out? A cat in a fridge!)
4) tidy up their cat balls in order to avoid causing serious ankle injury to their human slaves
5) use biros in a way that suggests they are, in fact, highly literate creatures and not merely arsing around with a long pointy thing
6) balance on the arm of a sofa and go to sleep without eventually falling off. However, when they do fall off they are very good at giving you a look that says, 'I meant to do that.'
7) eat cat biscuits without spitting bits all over the kitchen floor, especially when you have just given the floor a jolly good sweep
8) use a kitchen broom correctly. By which I mean, using the handle and pushing, rather than clinging onto the bristles with their teeth and being swept around a la 'Broom Sweep Ride
9) keep litter in their trays rather than spreading it all over the floor so people walking with bare feet feel like they are walking on especially spiky Lego. With extra spikes.
10) refrain from chasing the bobbles on strings that are attached to a particularly favourite winter jumper worn by a human slave because it is jolly cold and windy outside, by golly yes it is

However, cats can: 
1) keep human ears warm on chilly nights by draping their furry cat bodies around human shoulders
2) create effective storage facilities for biros and assorted pencils e.g under the sofa, under the cooker and under the fridge. Unfortunately, not under the phone.
3) sing loudly. It's one tune on one note, but it is a good song, the Song of Purrrrrrrr
4) induce feelings of gooey aaaahhhhness, which counteract feelings of ggrrrrrrrnessss often induced by fellow human beings
5) create good photo opportunities e.g Cat Up A Christmas Tree, Cat in a Box, Cat in a Waste Paper Basket, Cat Under a Newspaper, Cat in a Slipper, Cat Watching Washing Go Around in a Machine
6) show very great excitement about each new day, because it is NEW, and who knows what MIGHT happen, and life is very EXCITING, and humans could learn A LOT from this Cattitude philosophy
7) have whatever shaped eyebrows they darn well like, and not care who might be pointing and laughing
8) manage without shower gel, soap AND loo roll
9) wear fur without fear of paint attack by anti-fur trade protesters. They can also share their fur with their human slaves and will perform automatic colour contrast co-ordination, e.g if you are wearing white, you will be donated black fur, if your are wearing black, donated fur will be white. 
10) show unconditional affection and forgiveness because they have already forgotten that yesterday you nearly squished them like a bug because they were hiding under the blanket that was on the sofa upon which you decided to sit. 

Saturday, 5 October 2013

For Forks' Sake

Once upon a time, in the small village of Cutlery in the land of Canteen, there lived a set of Knives, Forks and Spoons. They were a big family - 42 altogether - and 44 if you counted the two maiden aunt serving spoons who appeared on high days and holidays and could more than hold their own in the lifting of three roast potatoes ALL at the SAME TIME! (I know, hard to believe, but believe it you will). 

In this family there were big knives and little knives, big forks and little forks, dessert spoons ( or, as the Lady of the Manor likes to call them 'pudding' spoons), soup spoons and teaspoons. And they all lived together, very happily, until that is, they ended up in the Estate of Much Malarkey Manor.

At first, all was well. The knives, forks and spoons, in their various sizes and guises, would count themselves out to the dinner table - one, two, three, four, five, six - and count themselves back in - one, two, three, four, five, six. Every one had a place, and to that place they belonged.

Until one Fatal Christmas. 

Now, the Lady of Much Malarkey Manor, let's call her Denise, liked to prepare for Christmas Dinner the night before Christmas as much as possible. This included not only 'prepping the veg' as she called it (because that is what it was), but also hoiking the Christmas crockery from the back of the cupboard where it hid all year round, and giving it a good buffing. And whilst she was about it, she liked to buff the cutlery as well.

'Out with the cutlery,' she said, this fateful festive season, 'out with the spoons - 6, the knives - 6, and the forks - 6...'

Except...horror of horrors...

...of forks there were only five!

Well! How could there be a missing fork? The Lady of the Manor was confused. Aside from the Dish and the Spoon in the Nursery Rhyme, she was pretty certain that forks could not run off because of their lack of leggage. Nor could they just vanish into thin air. Houdini forks were the stuff of myths.

The disappearance of the fork caused the Lady of the Manor much consternation because she liked things to be Just Right for Christmas, and having to present a festive table with mismatched cutlery caused her much distress. Some might say, 'Get a life, Lady of the Manor. It's only a fork,' to wit the Lady of the Manor might respond, 'You'll miss me when I am dead because it is DETAIL that counts, you mark my words.' 

Anyway, after Christmas, and some cutlery-related detachment  therapy, the Lady of the Manor hied herself to the land of Ikea, where she purchased a new set of matching stainless steel fighting irons, of which there were six apiece. Round numbers. All present and correct. And for a time, peace reigned in the land.

But there was something about the estate of Much Malarkey Manor. Something strange. No, not THAT! ( Good grief...). For the Lady of the Manor began to believe that the Manor was situated in the middle of the Kent equivalent of the Bermuda Triangle. Not because her yachts kept disappearing. Oh no! Because her cutlery kept vanishing.

Now, the Lady of the Manor knew it wasn't anything she was doing, because she had OCD (Obsessive Cutlery Disorder) and was given to counting her cutlery on a regular basis. That is how she knew bits kept disappearing. But where to? Surely not into the bin during some careless plate scraping? Or out into the flower beds during some careless chucking of the washing up water onto the garden during a drought in a effort to save water and be kind to the environment? Or, heaven forfend, vanishing forever under beds and sofas during cutlery forays into places other than the kitchen where food eating SHOULD take place but sometimes doesn't? 

All she knew was that at the last cutlery count (during a family dinner gathering this very week when matching cutlery ESPECIALLY matters) there were FORKS missing AGAIN!

And so the Lady of the Manor has resolved to purchase, in time for this approaching festive season, another set of cutlery. A set of cutlery in its own proper storage box. And that NO-ONE other than her good Ladyship self shall be allowed to open the aforesaid box and remove the cutlery. And that she herself shall oversee the return of the cutlery into its box, where each piece (count 'em) shall be nestled into its own defined space on mock velvet flock.  And then the whole caboodle will be secreted in a top-secret location known only to the Lady of the Manor so there shall be no random borrowing of a fork with which to eat cheesy coleslaw straight from the fridge. 

And whilst Certain Members of the Manor might find all this rather HILARIOUS, let them be warned that the sanity of the Changer of the Bin Liner, and the Changer of the Toilet Roll, and the Steamer of the Kitchen Floor, and the Recycler Binner of Things Left On the Kitchen Surfaces depends upon this purchase of Box of Cutlery. 

And that it shall be a purchase that SHE makes herself, and not a gift made to her on her impending birthday, because items of kitchen equipment are  no-no gifts for November birthday people, isn't that right Olly, my birthday twin?!

For the Lady of the Manor SHALL have a matching set of cutlery this Christmas, oh yes she shall. She shall deliver the Christmas Feast in Matching Accessory Triumph. 

And it shall thus be the same next year, and all ensuing years forever, yea verily it shall too.

And we shall all live happily ever after.