I've so much news to share with you.
As you know, I was closing the etsy shop. I'm feeling ok at the moment but I know all too well that this situation can change in a heartbeat. After all, last April, I was just given 6 months too live. Thank goodness I've never been good at being on time.
Anyway, a very lovely stitcher contacted a UK business to ask if they would stock my charts. The result of this conversation led to the lady, Kate, calling me up and asking if she could stock my pdf charts. I was so impressed by her, and found her so helpful and nice, that I've given her sole rights to distribute my pdf charts. After tax and VAT, a percentage of sales goes to my granddaughter's education fund and 10% goes to a Breast Cancer Research charity.
And the name of that business?
And yes they won 2017 British Craft Awards Runner Up!
I'm thrilled; not because of the money or any of that, but because my work will continue to benefit breast cancer research long after I have gone. I'm ok at the moment. I'm living with breast cancer but make no mistake, there hasn't been one single day when I don't thank those who have gone before me.
Whether they were cured or have sadly passed away with breast cancer, their journey, their statistics, have all led to the treatments we have today, just as my experience will help those who come after me.
And guess what? I have also been commissioned to produce a SAL for Lakeside Needlecraft....and once I get home (I'm visiting my granddaughter at the moment) I will be designing more. It's fun again!
And.....I have a new passion for crochet...and knitting...and sewing..because I'm trying to help my Hospice charity, Roscommon and Mayo Hospice.
My palliative care team are almost exclusively funded by a charity called The Hospice. They are the Roscommon/Mayo Hospice team.
The Irish government only pays approx. 5 percent to a charity which exists all over Ireland, which provides nurses, social workers, counsellors and hospices, for those who are unable to die at home.
Honestly, I don't know what I would do without them. I have contact with them on a weekly basis, with a pre-arranged text which I requested. If I wanted, they would call me or visit weekly, but as I'm reasonable at the moment, I asked if they could just text. They visit me every two months or so to check me in person (women apparently don't like to complain and have been known to tell porkie pies rather than bother someone), and if I wanted to see them, they are only a phone call away.
They liase with my medical team, help me sort out appointments, and support me in all ways.
They will also help me to be allowed to die at home and ensure my end of life wishes are complied to. I can have an over night nurse through them, a special bed and whatever I need to remain comfortable.
They also support my family members in both practical aspects and medical. They provide an ear for my children who may feel unable to talk to me.
And all of this is paid for by charity.
When I had food poisoning, I didn't want to bother anybody (see!). My husband phoned my nurse, who came over immediately and kicked my ass straight into hospital. And in doing so, she saved my life.
My heart was being damaged by the dehydration I was suffering from but, because it was a two hour trip to the hospital, I didn't want to make a fuss.
I can't ask people for money but I have a plan which I've discussed briefly with the regional rep for the Hospice. I would like to collect beautiful, home-made baby clothes and blankets and when I have a nice amount, I will donate them to the Castlerea Hospice Shop and let them host a baby event, selling our donations and raising their profile as well.
And so I'm trying to encourage people to offer donations of any baby item, hand made, with love. Even a little pair of mits can make a difference. I know it is a regional charity and I will be putting a newspaper appeal out to local crafters, but if you would like to help me, you would be more than welcome. Everything donated will have a little tag saying who made it and where they are from.
The Hospice team have helped me and my family so much, it would be lovely to say thank you in a practical way. I will be busy crocheting baby cardi's myself and I would love some company!
Right, that's me done. I'm hoping to finish a crochet cardi I'm making for the fund raiser but a certain little girl seems to think I should be playing with her instead! Not that I take much persuading!