Saturday, 4 January 2020

Graham and Dylys' news in 2019


Home

What a wet latter half of the year! Last year we became aware of an overflow from blocked guttering at the back of the house, and paid for a builder to clear the guttering.

So in all that wet weather this year, it was obvious that the problem was back again. The builder’s recommendation had been to get the roof professionally cleaned, but that is hard to stomach in a semi-detached house where the guttering on the rear collects rain and debris from both houses and the overflow was on our side. We explored various options, but felt that the simplest solution was to invest in a ladder so that Graham could climb up and clear the blockage on an as-needed basis. There is an angle-bend at the top of the downspout assembly, which is easy to take apart once it can be accessed – it is the short vertical section above the angle bend which is prone to getting blocked.

Holidays

Cnicht - near Porthmadog
We managed two holidays this year: Combe Martin in Devon in the spring, and Porthmadog in North Wales in the autumn. The south westerly direction for the spring holiday gave us opportunity to meet up with family in Cornwall before we settled into the holiday accommodation.

We are delighted to have now had five holidays in succession with near perfect weather (the odd shower on one day for some of the holidays, but no days written off due to rain) – a remarkable achievement for holidaying in the UK!

Mum moves into a care home

We are so grateful to Graham’s sisters who took on the bulk of the hard work and made some difficult decisions. Mum was becoming less and less able to look after herself. Karen was having to arrange for various people to make additional visits to Mum’s home. There were awkward phone calls. One evening, when we were about to go to a church meeting (which Graham was due to lead) we had to make an emergency trip to Leicester instead, spend the night with Mum, and Graham had to request the time off work the following day.

Of course Mum did not want to go into a care home. The first few weeks were very difficult, but thankfully she has settled down. For us, the journey to the care home takes a good couple of hours, and we are seeing her every few weeks.

Church

We continue to be active members at Bethel Baptist Church, and we really want to see the church grow now, as it is getting more difficult for a small fellowship to keep up with all the practical duties. The church advertised for a children’s worker to join us this year, but did not get a response, and we plan to try again next year.

Work

Graham has been working for Waters Corporation in Wilmslow for the past five years. He is pleased to be able to cycle to work regularly when the weather is expected to be fine (and apart from a break over the winter). He managed a longer season this year, and goes swimming once a week outside of the cycling season.

Dylys does various voluntary jobs, with a few changes this year. Her favourite job is as part of the “Open the Book” team, visiting various schools on Thursday mornings to take assemblies. She is encouraged when she meets children on the street and they excitedly ask, “You are the Open the Book lady, aren’t you?”. Besides “Open the Book”, she expects to be doing some extra work in our local hospital over the coming months.

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