An update on my pledge to not buy new, I’ve bought my one annual pair of new shoes, but they’re not Doc Martens. They’re flat and comfortable brogues with a hint of wackiness as they’re silver in colour.

Not only do I not wear heels because I have weak ankles, my very high insteps are becoming higher alongside toes that are becoming a bit wonky – grrrrr! So I have to wear lasts inside the shoes to flatten my feet into something that’s comparably normal.  Still, if that’s my only problem….. The Doc Martens will be bought in January.

I haven’t bought any clothes that are new either, apart that is from 9 pairs of Marks and Sparks knickers, which were very much needed as I’d not bought any for yonks. Nor am I buying much in the way of charity shop fashion, yet my thrift bags continue to fill up and every week I take a couple of bags of clothes and other odds and ends to my local charity shops.  My wardrobe has actual gaps. The thing is, that’s good, because, people, I’m (and did I feel bit sheepish about what I’m just about to tell you? Yes I did, but I’ve got over it!) my news is I’m moving!  Now, for the few who’ve known me longer than this blog – they’ll sigh and go, what, no! Again?  Because we have moved a lot.  On the plus side that means we don’t get stuck in a rut, and we would never, ever, say, oh I couldn’t move, which is what a lot of my friends say, because on the minus side, moving in the UK is an exceedingly stressful business where it is all dependant on a complicated system of solicitors, estate agents and, ‘the dreaded chain’. And it is the chain that is the challenge what with manoeuvring every individual household into the same legal position to agree to exchange the contract on the same day (we have) and complete and move on the same day (in 17 days time). Do you have a different system? I’d be interested to know. Because chains can collapse at any time, even (although it is very rare) after exchange, which is why I won’t feel quite right in the head until the day arrives that we finally move.

Did you realise this was coming as there have been little hints in the blog, not the least that I said there might be more opportunities to swim in the sea, because, yay and three cheers, I’ll be a 5-minute walk away from the sea!  So thrilled with that. If it is ever as hot as it was last week (and of course, it will be) I shall spend most of my day in the sea!

And here’s the thing, a couple of friends we’d told said, oh, you didn’t like the type of place you’re in then? Because, I think a lot of you know, but some of you might not, that the block of flats we live in is a Housing Association run place for people over-65.  Despite the fact that we are owners of our flat, honestly, the shock that some of our friends expressed when we first moved (2 years ago) as their impression was that we were moving to a care home. Seriously, the most oft said phrase, why would you want to move to a place like that?  Meaning why move to where a lot of older people live.  My reply was, it’s complicated (see below), but it is absolutely, our choice (also see below).  And. We are moving to the exact same type of place, but it happens to be in the centre of Brighton.

And, that is the reason for the move.  As I write this piece I look out of the window to a leafy green vista, which is just delightful. It couldn’t be prettier. But I don’t do green or leafy or pretty.  And how many of my photos have been taken at the bus-stop? A lot! The block of flats we’re currently in is too far outside Brighton. On a good day it’s 25 minutes by bus to the centre and on a bad traffic day 45 minutes – that’s too long.  And now the buses are stifling hot.  Where we are is part of Brighton, but it feels more like we’re living in a little village just outside the city, and that is exactly what we do not want. The new place? We can walk everywhere. We are near the centre. Everything I want to be involved in, and with, is nearby. That. Is. Us. Do you see now why we’re moving.

Actually I’ll just run through the reasons why we live in a not-unusual but nevertheless, for some, a controversial place.

Btw, I’ve written about this before, but I break it down to three big reasons and the first is, it’s the sensible thing to do!  How will we look after our big house when we get frail? That garden, those bedrooms.  Do we need them? Because, I can tell you that while all our friends who were either nearing 70 or about 70 were horrified at our move, Bill’s IT class, who were mainly 80+, all said, oh I wish I’d done that at your age, and well done, you’ve done it at the right time. That’s a very small base to rest my assumption, which is, to move into somewhere like our place earlier rather than later, but that is how I feel. I observed this with my mother who moved when she was 80, and it didn’t work for her, and I observe it now, in the place we’re currently in.

And the second reason for our move to an over 65s place is life isn’t always about being sensible. Really, to be absolutely honest, I carry a lot of baggage.  Three times we cared for older relatives: first my mother and then two of Mr F’s relatives. And did they have a plan for frailty?  No, they did not. The biggest challenge was my mother as she was not an independent woman. I could write a novel about why, but suffice to say, when my father died we did lot of driving to and fro between Sussex and Suffolk, usually the weekends, but I began to have to go up to deal with stuff for her during the week. And all of this when I had teenagers and a full-time job in London on a national project.  Won’t go into the details, but my health pretty much broke down and it was then that I swore I would never, ever do what my mother did to me to my children. I mean she couldn’t help her dependence but it was imprinted, over 20 years ago. See – I have a lot of baggage. So the kids were the least surprised when two years ago we announced our move to this type of housing, as I’ve always said I would do this.

And then finally, there’s the price of these places – they’re cheap. Now if we’d stayed in Brighton……  Because for those of you outside the UK you need to know that Brighton’s housing is near to London prices. But we didn’t stay put in one place, and what’s more, our life had been all the richer for these moves. What is wealth? Wealth should not be just about the money you have and the property you own – it can be a wealth of life and the experiences you’ve had. I especially value the moves for the people we’ve met and the friends we’ve made. I would not have had it any different. But to move back to Brighton is nigh impossible once we you’ve moved away, but not impossible, to one of these flats. So there you are.

And why is it good that I’m reducing the number of my clothes? Because the flat is marginally smaller, but it does have a balcony (yay) and it is in brilliant area (double yay).

So there’s no photos of new clothes, but here’s the thing. Six days after we move I go on a cruise so next week I’ll be packing my suitcase for that! And here below are a few pix of my cruise frocks.

That is one gorgeous charity shop dress which cost all of £9.99

It’s made up from strips of gauzy fabric and is just fab! Here below is another one. Now that pic was taken over two years ago and don’t I look well. Tbh, the stress of the coming move has had quite an impact so I’m looking forward to 8 days of being waited on hand and foot.

I remember that this dress cost £10. It’s stretchy so that means it’s very accommodating to any spare tyre you might have.

I think I’ll take this one above as well, as it’s really fresh and pretty and, unlike most of my cruise frocks that go unworn until the next cruise, I wear this dress a lot.

This pic below is of our first cruise (in 2012) and this dress is a winner as I take it every time.

It’s made from that wonderful devore velvet and I remember it cost £15. Actually the charity shops in Brighton are currently full of gorgeous frothy and sometimes outrageous frocks because this weekend it’s Pride!  We’re so looking forward to the parade – it is such fun!

That’s all for now, have a lovely rest of the week.

Penny, the Frugalfashionshopper


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46 thoughts on “I’m de-cluttering again! For a good reason!

  • 31st July 2019 at 8:25 am

    Hi Penny,

    I agree with you about moving house, I’ve done quite a few and hope to end my days near the sea! And I agree that more people should be prepared to get into a better situation ready for when they are less able, so spread the word!! I hope you have a lovely cruise after the stress of moving is over.

    • 31st July 2019 at 2:53 pm

      Hi Margaret – lovely to hear from you! Yes, you’re another ‘mover’. Tbh, it’s good to know we’re not the only ones who move a lot! Thanks so much for the good wishes re: the cruise. We are going to be picked up from our door – I look forward to that!!! Have a good rest of the week x

  • 31st July 2019 at 8:49 am

    Hi Penny,
    I completely agree about moving while you are fit and able, i moved 3 days after my 70th birthday into a retirement village in north yorkshire and it’s a lovely community, like you i looked after relatives including my husband till he died, and i don’t want my children to have the same responsibility.
    Thank you for a great blog, i look forward to reading it avery time.
    Have a very restful cruise.

    • 31st July 2019 at 2:58 pm

      That’s so interesting that you’ve gone to retirement village – I don’t know of any in the Brighton or Sussex area. Instead there are many apartments in purpose built blocks, but gosh, they don’t come on the market all that much, which is why we went to Withdean on the outskirts of Brighton – there was nothing else. When we decided we wanted to move away from Withdean it took some time to even see a flat in the area we wanted to live in. The supply really is very limited.

      Thank you so much for your feedback which is very much appreciated 🙂

      • 3rd August 2019 at 8:18 am

        There is a retirement village in West Sussex,it’s in Faygate,just outside of Horsham.

  • 31st July 2019 at 8:51 am

    Dear Penny, I so agree with you ,wanting to be in the midst of things. We are near the middle of Brighton too,and it’s lovely! Don’t forget our wonderful bus passes ,such a boon! Enjoy your cruise and see you at Pride ! Best wishes Judy

    • 31st July 2019 at 2:59 pm

      The bus passes are amazing and there are so many buses going up to where we are going to live we shall be spoilt for choice. Long may the passes continue 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 9:25 am

    I’m nearing mid 60 and planning a move from the coast to a more rural place ! When I came back to the UK I thought living by the sea would be wonderful but this location (SW) has too much traffic, too much noise, litter and so on for me to like. UK towns and cities are my idea of hell 🙂 and I’m looking forward to endless fields and trees.
    Like you, I’m determined my child will never have to look after me, I have plans and arrangements in place to avoid that.
    Your cruise dresses are beautiful, have a wonderful time.

    • 31st July 2019 at 3:22 pm

      Yes, there are parts of Brighton that are no-go areas. They’d be quite frankly too rough let alone noisy. Funnily enough in leafy Withdean we live right by the train track (up an embankment) so even in our leafy area there is a certain kind of noise (the trains) which people said we’d get used and we did, but even so I wonder if I’ll sleep better on the 4th floor with the seagulls (gosh they can be noisy) and the distant traffic and at night, possibly, the drunks! City living!!!! Good luck with your search for the endless fields and trees – I have several friends who feel the same way as you. And thank you re: the cruise 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 9:47 am

    Bravo to you both it takes courage as we get older to make big decisions. We are still trying to plan a move to the sea and have put a two year deadline on it, she says hopefully! One question on downsizing to a flat, where do you keep suitcases, Xmas decorations, holiday clothes, in my husband’s case his golf and photography equipment?? Regards Rita

    • 31st July 2019 at 3:07 pm

      Hi Rita. Ah yes, our flat was described quite recently as ‘tidy’, and actually this is because I have a place for everything and everything is put away! Also we have a storage area in our block of flats for suitcases. In the place we’re going to the storage area is really spacious and we can all have a large free-standing cupboard to store spare stuff like Christmas decorations. My cruise dresses and other holiday clothes go in the storage in the base of the bed. Re: golf and photography equipment – always have a 2-bed flat. MrF has masses of ephemera, books and just stuff in the 2nd bedroom which is our office. I also have my books and writing stuff in this room. We therefore do not put people up including our children – that has stopped. But they do live near us. If anyone did stay this type of housing always has a guest bedroom. Personally I do like a challenge in i)down-sizing and ii) designing/organising furniture and storage 🙂

      Hope that helps!

      • 31st July 2019 at 3:17 pm

        Thank you Penny, yes it would need two bedrooms. Interesting about the storage area the ones we have looked at did not mention this, a question to explore in the future. Thanks again and I look forward to hearing about the move and the cruise. Regards Rita

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:10 am

    Thanks Penny. Another enjoyable posting: personable, informative, inspiring and optimistic. I forwarded it to Derek (husband) to read. The dresses are great.

    • 31st July 2019 at 3:26 pm

      Glad you enjoyed the read 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:13 am

    I love your devore velvet dress. I have one almost exactly the same, bought over about 20 years ago now. It looks great on, never dates and always looks classy. I think mine must have cost a similar amount…Matalan!

    • 31st July 2019 at 3:27 pm

      Agree – devore velvet is just the best. And wow, Matalan!

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:40 am

    Oh congratulations! So next time I am on the pier I can app you and you can come over in five minutes! I think I am in Rye when you are on the cruise. We are there from 30th August till the 4th of September. Good luck packing!

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:10 am

      Yes, it is so good but I won’t truly relax until the day we move, but I will be about 10 minutes walk away from the pier. Next time 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:44 am

    I’ve written before about how I agree with you on the need to make sensible decisions about where & how you live, well before you actually need to. I like living, as I do, somewhere leafy; I really need to see trees and countryside around me but we have such a poor bus service (2 days a week, 2 buses into Winchester and 3 out, the last one at 13.50 hrs) so staying here a lot longer isn’t going to work. I’ve been thinking about a retirement community but they are expensive and often not well connected to local amenities & we are still under 70.
    One thing I’ve wondered about flats is the possibility of noise/nuisence from other tenants.
    I suppose somewhere restricted to older people may not have these problems ? Him indoors also worries about service charges which could escalate.
    I’m sure you will enjoy your cruise. We are not long back from the maiden voyage of Spirit of Discovery, Saga’s new ship. Great overall but I don’t think I’ll bother with an inaugural again having now done it. Fantastic fireworks but some of the pleasure spoiled by thinking about the pollution and waste of money! Cruise/occasion wear is so easy to buy used as most people buy for an occasion and never wear it again. I bought 3 long dresses from e-bay this year. One was 2 small but so lovely I’m keeping it in case I lose weight. I’m in the process of finding a PT so theoretically that could happen!

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:26 am

      Gosh, Lynda the flat we’re currently in would have suited you down to the ground as it’s just outside the city, has an excellent bus service and is very leafy as it’s surrounded by greenery and trees. You could, I’m sure, find something near you like that. But the thing about retirement/over65/housing association/so-called sheltered housing is that just like cruise lines you have to do the research. Also note that not a lot of these flats (some communities have bungalows but they would be really expensive) come on to the market. The supply is low. But do the research as some will have to be rejected out of hand. There’s a particular company that you must avoid totally as they are just out to increase the service charge and ground rent, and I don’t see how they can manage older people as they did not start as a Housing Association for older people which Hanover Anchor still is. That’s what Hanover does, end of. Read this

      Once you know this other things fall into place. Always interview the manager and ask for the 5-year works plan which tells you what needs to be done and how it will be paid for. Hanover had such a plan. Then note the contingency fund – what is in it? There’s a 6-figure sum in both blocks’ fund.; the one we’re going to and the one we’re currently in. We got into a scenario of offering for a place run by that other company and there was £5,000 in the fund – that won’t do. Fortunately – it fell through and we got out of it – phew!

      Re: the new Saga ships. I don’t think we can afford the increase in fares. We’re going on the Sapphire – so looking forward.

      • 1st August 2019 at 8:58 am

        Thanks for your helpful advice Penny. The new Saga ship offers a awful lot for your money – choice of 5 restaurants at no extra cost for example. There is a lot of public space which means a lot of walking which will be difficult for very elderly people. I’m hoping to go on Sapphire again before she goes out of service next year, which is a pity. Saga is certainly putting all its eggs in two very expensive baskets! I like the Fred Olsen ships for size, food and friendliness but they do need refurbishing, especially the cabins.

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:45 am

    Love your common-sense outlook on life and aging. You are an inspiration to embrace the change!

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:29 am

      Well, it’s common-sense plus the experience of dealing with my mother! But I do also embrace change – thank you so much for your comment 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 11:49 am

    I think you’re being brilliant about the move. Along with the fact that it’s a good excuse to purge and slim down stuff.
    It’s also very responsible to move into an older community. That’s what we are doing too. Granted, I will be the youngest of them all, which is wonderful. I swear your life sounds like ours Penny. A week and a half after we move, we are going to NYC for a fun trip. Nothing like piling on the craziness.
    Congrats with your move, and I can’t wait to see photos of your new place.

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:36 am

      Oh that’s amazing that you’re doing the same. As there’s such a lot of space in the US (!) you definitely have more retirement ‘communities’ than here in the UK. The majority of retirement places in the UK are in what you might call condos (?) and we call a block of flats. If it’s a well-run place it will be part of a much larger Housing Association which is purposely for older people with many policies for ageing. There will be a manager who is always at reception and communal activities if you want (we don’t) but it’s there for when …… There are a few retirement villages here but they would be in the depths of the countryside, which as you’ve gathered, we wouldn’t like 🙂

      Enjoy your trip to NYC. I am so looking forward to the relaxation of a cruise 🙂


  • 31st July 2019 at 1:25 pm

    Town centre living can’t be beat we’ve moved 8 times, in 49 years together, plus quite a few rentals in between and the best part is the decluttering. I’m with you on leaving things organised for your family and not leaving things until you can’t cope with the garden or stairs. I guess we are lucky to be in a position where we could afford to move, which is another problem people may face. We live in the S of France and ok it’s busy but suburbia I cannot do. We lived in St Albans for 4 years and they were the most miserable years of my life. That old chestnut ‘location, location, location’ is one thing even estate agents don’t need to exaggerate. I hope you’ll be happy in your move and your cruise (bring your boxing gloves :)).

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:48 am

      Oh Flora it’s so nice to meet someone who’s moved as much as we have – it’s the same number in 45 years! Plus rentals at the beginning.

      The location is everything and was, we knew, the one thing that went against the current flat. The one we’re going to is central city living – woo hoo! And probably not as noisy as we’re on the top floor and not right by a railway line as we are now!!!! You get used to the trains but I think they do disturb my sleep – that’s going to be interesting to monitor.

  • 31st July 2019 at 2:43 pm

    Our children are starting to mutter about us downsizing. We do have a large house, but for the moment I like it that way, I like to potter around in my rooms. But I can see that it’s not going to be long before I find it too much. I applaud your decision, you are making things easier for yourselves and later for your children, AND getting exactly what suits you. The thing is, here in Greece, people tend not to sell and move so much. You either inherit a place , or land and build on it, and stay put. You hear gasps of horror if you say oh We’d like to sell our house and get a smaller place. What is happening a lot now is that children are paying for someone to move in with their parents and look after them when they get really frail, if they are unable( or unwilling !) to do so themselves. Not sure how I feel about that ! Enjoy your cruise !

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:57 am

      There are many ways to deal with this ageing lark and not moving, yet being prepared, with various options, is one of them. The thing not to do, is to not prepare!!! I saw it in my working life (worked for Age Concern and Carers (the unpaid variety), I experienced this lack of thought (through the 3 sets of relatives) and I still see it all around me! It’s not only sensible, it’s thoughtful.

      I will definitely enjoy the cruise 🙂

  • 31st July 2019 at 9:39 pm

    Penny, I agree with all your comments on moving into a suitable property for your coming needs before the needs arise. We too have spent many years caring for elderly relatives and driving long distances and have vowed that our children will not have to do the same for us. We are similar in age to you and are about to start the process of sorting the house so that we can sell it and move to a flat in the centre of town. We have moved many times and I enjoy the process of making a new home. I hope the rest of your move goes according to plan.
    You look lovely in your dresses and enjoy the cruise,
    Sue x

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:53 am

      Yes, it is such a good thing to think about the future and prepare for needs that might arise and of course, might not. But it’s also all about never inflicting oneself on one’s children too much.

      Thank you so much Sue, I will so enjoy the cruise 🙂

  • 1st August 2019 at 5:26 am

    Hello Penny, Handsome and I have been living an inner city apartment life for 11 wonderful years. Because we walk so much, the battery on our car needs charging from time to time. You are going to love it. What beautiful cruising frocks. Dance the night away! Judy

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:50 am

      I will dance the night away, Judy! Inner city and walking everywhere here I come! Thank you!

  • 1st August 2019 at 6:36 am

    What a refreshing view on life Penny. Personally, the thought of a cruise horrifies me particularly after reading of a fight in the 16th floor restaraunt of one ship. Sounds like skyscraper living at sea to me! Give me my quiet green fields any day but then I do not have any excuse to wear beautiful frocks like yours. Shame…

    • 1st August 2019 at 7:04 am

      Thank you – and re: cruises. Well the thing about cruises is that cruise lines are as varied as the people who go on them. You have to pick your cruise carefully and with some knowledge. First of all,I have never been on the cruise line that had that fight, not saying that everyone on that cruise would’ve been of a similar type but I saw a photo of an earlier ‘patriotic’ event that day and I would’ve avoided it like the plague (see My Other Blog for my preferences – hint – I’m more global and European!!!) Also the fight occured in the early hours – the majority would’ve probably been tucked up in bed! I know I would! Yes, choose carefully and ask yourself where do these cruise lines advertise these holidays. Now Saga doesn’t advertise and it is Saga that is the cruise line that we’re going on and have used the most. They are more expensive but you get what you pay for – and they aren’t the large blocks of flats, although they are phasing out two older ships and have built new and these are even more expensive so not sure whether we’ll be able to continue with cruises of that rather lovely type. Btw, don’t think money does it every time as Cunard is expensive but a bit blingy and for me slightly off (although never tried it) as it has areas that are off-limits for those who haven’t paid – hmm. No it’s Saga every time. And we shall be picked up from the door – oh that I love!!!!

      Thank you so much for your comment 🙂

  • 1st August 2019 at 8:03 am

    I can totally agree with your reasoning for living where you do (or should I say about to live?!) being in the centre of Brighton will be fantastic – what a lovely, interesting and beautiful place to live, good choice! We have reached that age of ‘should we move?’ but to be honest, our house isn’t huge, we like the area, we are not dependant on using our cars as we have doctors, dentist, newsagent and supermarket all within five minutes walk in one direction and a large country park within five minutes in the other. There is a regular bus service into town and at the moment both our children live no more than 30 mins away. Now if only we had a beach it would be ideal! Hope the move goes well and enjoy dipping your toes in the sea every day!

    • 2nd August 2019 at 7:58 am

      Yes, I think you have everything that you need within walking distance. At the moment we even have to get into a car for the doctor which is so wrong, but that won’t happen when we move.

      Having the sea so near is an extra bonus – the most important thing was to have everything nearby, which you seem to have. Thank you so much for your good wishes which are much appreciated 🙂

  • 1st August 2019 at 6:28 pm

    I think your move is simply sensible. I had no idea you could buy Housing Association flats; I must look into this. We have no plans to move at the moment but we will get older and we do have steep stairs. We have a tiny garden and I’m 5 minutes walk away from the bus station; train station and town centre; as when I bought the house (on my own) I had visions of me pushing my zimmer frame into town!!

    I hope you’ll be incredibly happy in your flat. You have outside space which is fab and you’re close to both town and the sea which is brilliant. I hope you get lots of swimming opportunities!

    Loved your beautiful cruise dresses and you look fabulous in all of them! Hope you have a wonderful cruise and good luck with the move.

    • 2nd August 2019 at 8:01 am

      Thank you so much Veronica, yes, it will be so good to be right in the centre of everything plus having the sea nearby which I shall research just a bit as there is some steep shelving so you don’t go swimming when the tide is in I believe.

      Have a great weekend and a lovely holiday xxxx

  • 3rd August 2019 at 8:26 am

    I’m just echoing all the other comments on your blog, everyone has to do what is right for them, we are in the processing of getting our house in order so we don’t have to worry too much in maintenance, for when we can no longer do jobs around the house. Hope everything goes smoothly with the move and have a wonderful time on your cruise,take care xox

    • 4th August 2019 at 10:34 am

      Thank you so much for your comment, Margaret. Yes, I do agree, we all adapt and change in different ways and a move isn’t necessary – it’s the preparation that matters, I think, which you have well in hand. Thanks again – I will enjoy both living in the more central area and the cruise!!!

  • 3rd August 2019 at 6:14 pm

    Hello from Vancouver Island, BC, Canada …. the first dress for the cruise, at $9.99 and made of the strips of gauzy fabric, looks absolutely smashing, and has always been my favorite of your clothing I have seen, (except the berets which I love too). I am 77 and living in a townhouse complex, we are all separate buildings with gardens and a big central, treed and grassed area. I love it, but do worry about taking care of it and yard as I get older. You might write more specific suggestions for aging ladies, we all understand “don’t be a burden” but the specifics get lost! have a stress free move and relaxing cruise, ann lee s.

    • 4th August 2019 at 10:36 am

      Thank you, I will write more about different options as we age – that’s definitely going to be a post in the future. And thank you – it is a lovely dress 🙂

  • 4th August 2019 at 10:12 am

    Congratulations on your move, Penny. I think it’s very exciting, although I appreciate that moving is always stressful. Going on the cruise should help you recover!
    We’ve just come back from France and we’ re going to be pet sitting in Kemptown. So far we’ve done one in Hove and one in central Brighton. This is to help us to get to know the various parts of the city before any move.
    The main issue about Retirement flats for us, is that generally, you can’t have pets.
    Love your cruise dresses!

  • 5th August 2019 at 9:27 am

    Congrats on your move Penny and love the clothes for the cruise. Think we did the opposite 6 years ago, the year after we married and bought a farmhouse in Yapton near Arundel with 4 acres. As newlyweds in our 60’s we both needed a fresh start/project. Our family thought we were mad but it has proved invaluable for grandchildren to collect eggs from chickens, pat the neighbouring horses ( rescues) and we started Airbnb and met wonderful people.
    I have just had a hysterectomy and have learnt to let go and ask for help, block out Airbn for a time, let the weeds grow, the dust settle, realise the veggie plot will not be at its best, enjoy the garden from a deckchair rather than from my knees and converse with the hens. Because I am noticing more I see a declutter is overdue – books/clothes/old projects never completed. It has made me think though that we will need to plan for the future at some stage….but that is far off unless we find we have to. I dislike town living and have started using our lovely 700 bus to travel in to Chichester for events when I can’t face the challenge of driving/parking. Wish you well with your move.

  • 9th August 2019 at 7:16 pm

    Only just caught up with my blog reading, Penny. I understand your reasons and applaud your thought process. It’s important to do these things before you NEED to do them. We know that we need to think about moving in 3 or 4 years time. The garden is manageable now but won’t be later. Best wishes that all goes well, and that you have a fabulous cruise too.

    By the way, I was an estate agent for a few years. We all wished fervently that the convoluted sell/buy process would change. Agents often got wrongly blamed when chains fell apart but we were just as frustrated as the sellers and buyers. Successive Governments have agreed that it isn’t practical but no one does anything to improve it.

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