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Saturday, 30 November 2013

Celebrating Change

Dear readers,

 Two e-mails of note arrived in our mail boxes this week.  The first stirred up feelings of intense maternal pride and the second, well, it just made me plain happy.

On Tuesday, whilst waiting for Héloïse to arrive home after dusk from her theatre class, I hesitantly logged into her account, as she had pleadingly requested the night before, and saw the mail she'd been waiting for.  Natural Sciences Interview, it read.  How could I not read on?  And then I jumped up and danced before my my younger children's surprised eyes: 'She's got an interview at Cambridge University', I shrieked!  Needless to say we all danced for quite a while after that.  And downed champagne too!  The interview will be taking place on Tuesday 17th December at Trinity Hall.
The second e-mail quietly landed in my mailbox yesterday.  It was short and terribly sweet.  My Phd thesis supervisor wrote that she would be delighted for me to return to complete my Phd thesis the following academic year.
 And with those few lines I felt as though I had returned home.

 Shortly after Angélique was born, almost four years ago, I was obliged to put my thesis to one side.  It was frustrating and it was the right thing to do at the time.  I cannot express how much I love my field of study - Baroque aesthetics - and how thrilled I am to have this chance to finish.  It is necessary too.  I have noticed the quality of my writing slipping and I need the guidance of my WONDERFUL supervisor who is brilliant and meticulous; two qualities we do not share!  It will be a tough, glorious year and I am so very excited.  So, change is afoot although it is not imminent.  It will change my perspective on creating too; of that I am certain.

To celebrate, in particular, Héloïse's good news, I slipped Miss Twinkle Toes onto my shop shelves today.  The last few weeks have been ridiculously and wonderfully busy with customer orders and I am happy to have had the time to put this little lady at least on sale before Christmas.  She is my last ballet-themed hare and is a bit of a celebration in herself: pink silk - called Rose Cherubin and sparkly linen purchased from Paris, ballet shoes and stars embroidered on her ankles with silver and silk threads.  My favourite thing was using The Uncommon Thread's wispy fingering merino yarn in the fairytale colourway; Spumoni to make her ballet wrap-cardigan.  It makes for delightful small-scale knitting on 2.75mm double-pointed needles!

If you think you know somebody who might like to give her a home you may find her right over here.

 I like change, mostly, although some would say I am not always so good at dealing with the unexpected.  How about you?  Do you revel or flee from change?  Have you made decisions already about next year?  I would like to read about them, big or small.

A bientôt,

Stephanie





59 comments:

  1. Wonderful news. How proud you must be that your daughter has been invited for an interview at Cambridge. Fingers crossed for her. And how good that you will be able to pick up and continue with your academic life too. I hope that goes well too.

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  2. Dear Stephanie, what wonderful news for both of you and, as you say, change is in the air. I have always looked forward to change. Ever the optomist, I am always convinced life can only get better. Generally I am proved right but sometimes life gets better in some ways but not in others. The secret is to embrace the good and work on the not so good.

    Love Miss Twinkle Toes. She's as lovely as all her sisters! She's bound to find a loving home very quickly. X

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  3. Wonderful news Stephanie, I'm so happy for you and Heloise, exciting plans are afoot indeed!!!
    My plans for next year are basic really, to de-clutter my life and home. My house is cluttered! I have my furniture, my grandparents and my aunts all inherited, and all fit in perfectly, but there is also all the paraphernalia in the attic and garage. Im not a hoarder as such, but i have boxes of magazines that I kept thinking i would need to look at them again, all gardening and wildlife, but they have been there for years now so its time to go. I want to be sitting here next year with an almost empty attic and garage. I am also going to examine my health, its not good at the moment, so i want to lose the weight i piled on while in hospital and get fitter so I can deal with my illness better, make Princess and the Bear more of a business and knit for myself a bit more :) I want granny square jacket and I have a design for a 'granny' dress coat ;) apart from that, get to know my beautiful new friends better, share more of their lives, write actual letters and post them. Oh how wonderful it will be :D xxx Love always xx sam xx

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  4. What wonderful news. As you know, I also had to set my PhD aside a few years ago and I totally understand your longing to return to yours. Mine will stay shelved for now, but who knows what lies ahead. The very best of luck to you with yours, and to Héloïse with her interview x

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  5. This is incredibly exciting for both of you! Well done to Heloise, she must be over the moon and how incredibly proud for you too Stephanie. I would love to just do my masters and am always on the brink of commiting to it but then don't, hopefully one day x x x

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  6. What wonderful news Stephanie!! Miss Twinkle Toes is divine, I absoloutely adore her beautiful outfit!!
    Love and hugs ♥ Vicky ♥

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  7. sweet Stephanie!!! this is really exciting news all round. Congratulations to you both!!!! I saw from your shop that you're a bit full with orders until February, but this year is the year FOR SURE, I would like to make a custom order for a doll for either Julia's birthday (in Feb) or if that's too soon, maybe for Easter? xo to you and let's chat about this soon!

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  8. Congratulations to both Héloïse and you, Stephanie, wonderful news for you both !!! I'm sure you both will excel.
    Beautiful little hare, as always! :)
    Change?? I'm not good with change I have to admit but I do love a brand new shiny year!
    V xxx

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  9. ah Stephanie, this post I can leave a comment on immediately. Congratulations Heloise! That is so exciting. And to you Stephanie, I know how much you have missed your Phd work so I am thrilled it is on your horizon. Lovely little hare too. I('m still thinking about a boy mouse.)

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  10. well done to both of you! it's great that you can still feel the momentum to continue and want to. You are very talented clever lady Stephanie! Heather x

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  11. Wonderful news for both of you!

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  12. Congratulations to you and your beautiful daughter! And the rabbit is a gorgeous creation.

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  13. Sending warm wishes and big congratulations to both of you! I hope you'll share more about your return to your PhD in due time, it is exciting news, and a wonderful topic! Oh, and your latest little bunny is a very delicate beauty! Chrissie x

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  14. Oh my, what thrilling news for Hèloise! And of course for her devoted parents and family...Congratulations! As well to you, Stephanie, best wishes for your continued academic journey. Changes are indeed afoot...enjoy them all!

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  15. Stephanie, congratulations to you and your daughter. What a talented family! Miss Twinkle Toes is just perfection. Your comments on my blog were most kind. I will try to take your advice about the catnaps. Have a wonderful weekend, and embrace the changes, Much love, Linda x

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  16. Stephanie, isn't it grand you and Heloise would each be receiving such fabulously good messages now! I can imaging that there is and will be lots of celebrating around your home. Both you ladies are obviously very talented ladies who have deep interests in a variety of areas. It's that range that delights me when I read your posts and see the photos of your Mademoiselles.

    I so look forward to reading more about how these developments develop. I am so glad to have recently visited Cambridge with Celia, as it gives me a reminder of what a very remarkable place it is.

    xo

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  17. Dear Stephanie,
    Wonderfull news... and congratulations to Heloïse and you! No surprise she is as talented as her mother (I did not notice your writing skills were slipping lately :), it's really always such a delight to read you). How excited you may be by these projects.
    Write to you very soon....
    Happy advent sunday.

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  18. Wishing both you and Heloise good luck for your future studies. Happy dancing all round. Miss Twinkle toes is a beauty and I see she is already off to pastures new embracing a new change. Next year I shall be looking after my little granddaughter when her mummy goes back to work and what a pleasure that will be. I plan to go back to a slimming club and lose some weight. I made a promise as I got collared in the supermarket with a trolley full of chocolately things by the slimming club leader. I had been thinking about it and a wedding coming up s a good incentive. Apart from that I plan to do more sewing. Looking forward to the new year. Out with the old, in with the new. I am ready.xx

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  19. congratulations to you girls!!!!!!!!
    xxxxx Ale

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  20. The only thing about "CHANGE" is potentially losing a friend. I am SO excited for you chère amie, that you are going to continue with your Ph.D. That was a generous offer on your advisor's part, since we here are familiar with not-so-generous advisors that frown on candidates that have taken a hiatus. My husband too 12 years to finish his thesis, but his advisor was extremely gracious. I WISH YOU THE MOST FULFILLING experience!

    I know how you feel about making changes. I no longer create my art to sell and that has put some people out of sorts. On the one hand, it feels good to have "fans", but on the other hand, I have other dreams, and like you, that is to follow my writing crush. Funny thing however, since I only post twice a month on my blog now (I made that change so I could pursue my poetry writing), I have no more time to write seriously. A new teaching job as demanded my attention, but with time, things will smooth out, as they will for you.

    Hugs to you, and I never want to lose our connection! Anita

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  21. Congratulations to you both ..... what wonderful and exciting times ahead!
    Adorable hare, what a little beauty.
    love jooles xxx

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  22. stephanie~great news, congratulations!!

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  23. Wonderful news! Congratulations to all.

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  24. What wonderful news for you and your daughter.
    Good luck to her when she has her interview on the 17th December, it will be a great Christmas present to her if she gets a place.
    I remember my granddaughter being invited to Oxford three years ago just now, and it is hard to believe that already she is now in her final year.

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  25. CHère amie,

    It was such a joy to see your comment a few minutes ago chez moi. Thank you for coming into my little home, where I do enjoy imagining, writing, creating and visiting lovely friends like you.

    Sending fond wishes for a peaceful and inspiring evening. May the week allow for you to begin the process of writing. Every word is special. Bisous, Anita

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  26. congrats to both of you! How exciting and I'm glad that you can resume your phd. I think you're going to be quite busy in the near future but the good kind of busy.

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  27. Wow, what very exciting news for you both - thrilling things lie ahead!

    It's good to have our minds sharpened up from time to time - the second law of thermodynamics applies to thought and writing as much as it does to particulate matter, I think.

    I hope the changes ahead will all be good ones, for both of you. (But will we have to call you Doctor?) :)

    P.S. I hate to see change approaching, but usually manage to enjoy things once the change has taken place.

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  28. Well Congratulations Stephanie! Such wonderful wonderful news....

    Well done to Heloise, you all must be so thrilled.

    And congratulations to you too. I also put my career on hold to raise children. I made the choice happily and it is a bit frustrating I couldn't 'do it all' like some others seem to be able to do but as you've shown, these things can be picked up again later on…..

    Good luck to Heloise for the interview.

    Mel xxx

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  29. Congratulations to you both!
    I'm sure you can't wait to get back to your studies, and my fingers are crossed for H and her interview. Frances mentioned our visit to Cambridge, in fact we walked right past Trinity Hall as I do almost every time I go into town - such a beautiful setting next to the footbridge and the river. Will you be accompanying her to the interview?

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    1. Yes, indeed, Celia! Wild horses couldn't keep me away. Actually, I was thinking of you yesterday and thinking how lovely it would be to meet you for coffee in Cambridge...!

      But I imagine you are super busy :-)

      Stephanie

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    2. Hoping the madness will have calmed by 17th ;-)
      And I really need to see the Japanese exhibition at the Fitz... and maybe meet a friend for a cuppa.
      Celia

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  30. Gosh, Stephanie, what wonderful news!! I am so pleased for all of you, and hope that your ventures proceed smoothly and happily! Ali.

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  31. Stephanie, what wonderful news for you both!! Congratulations again on your daughter getting an interview and I will be thinking of you all on the 17th and I do hope it all goes well. You must be so delighted that you can return to your thesis and do what you love most. It looks and sounds as if you are so passionate about this subject and I am sure that it must come across in your writing. You must feel so excited that you can yet again embark on this journey and finish off what you have started. I do however believe that there was most probably a good reason for you to be doing this now and not earlier, only time will tell. Wonderful news all round. Congratulations on another beautiful make, Miss Twinkle Toes sure is gorgeous! Wishing you a very happy advent xoxo

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  32. Congratulations to both of you! I admire you very much for wanting to continue and finish your PhD! I don't think I could ever manage studying again with children around! I wish you great success with your study! Have a wonderful month of December!

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  33. Congratulations to you both! Such exciting news.

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  34. Hallo Stephanie,
    das hört sich klasse an!!! Solange Veränderungen positiver Art sind, nimmt man sie doch gerne an, nicht wahr? Ich werde am 17. Dezember an Hélois denken, sie schafft es, ganz bestimmt!!!
    Das wird bestimmt ein aufregendes (aber auch arbeitsintensives) Jahr für Dich. Ich finde es wirklich toll, dass Du an Deiner Doktorarbeit weiterarbeiten möchtest (ui, danach wirst Du einen Doktortitel haben !?), es wäre schade, wenn alles umsonst gewesen wäre. Ich bin so gespannt, wie alles für Dich laufen wird.
    Mein kommendes Jahr wird nicht so spektakulär ausfallen, besondere Änderungen (von denen ich wüsste) sind keine in Sicht. Aber solange sich nichts zum Negativen ändert, bin ich auch ganz glücklich darüber.

    Ganz liebe Grüße und eine schöne Adventszeit, Bärbel

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  35. Ich hab noch etwas vergessen: Nachträglich alles, alles Liebe zum Geburtstag!!!!

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  36. Best Wishes to your daughter on her upcoming interview and to you as you return to your PhD programme. The "Hallowed Halls of Learning" are well represented by your family, Stephanie. I think I can hear your heart singing.

    -Karen

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  37. Dear Stephanie...Oh my, this is all such wonderful news! Congratulations to your beautiful Héloïse on achieving her interview against so much competition which is such a fantastic achievement (I have the date firmly in my mind and will be thinking of you all on the day as we celebrate Leah's birthday!) and I'm so happy to hear that you will finally be able to return to your studies...it must be so exciting for you...I definitely think change is a good thing even though we may have small fears along the way..follow your dream Stephanie...you so deserve to!
    Miss Twinkle Toes is beautiful...I love her name and those pretty starry feet..she's a real treasure...
    Happy Sunday!
    Susan x

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  38. Stephanie, how wonderful it was to see your note today...I have been bogged down with change, here in our home renovations..it is a long and frustrating process...I was thrilled for you with the news of both your daughter being accepted at Cambridge and for yourself as well....over the years I have learned to give myself up to a more knowing One...He knows when the time is right for all things...I hope to participate again in this wonderful blogging world very soon...all the very best to you Stephanie, this season....N.xoxo

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  39. Wow -- your little bunny is absolutely gorgeous -- no surprise that she's sold out already! Congratulations on the fantastic academic news for your family!!!

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  40. Congratulations on the fantastic news to you and to Héloïse! I can feel the excitement through your writing.

    I find it easy to love and even long for positive change, but sometimes the change of routine gets my feathers a bit rumpled for a while.

    I enjoyed your note the other day so much! Thank you for your visit. Merry Christmas to you & all of your family!

    Keri

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  41. I'm jealous & very happy for you simultaneously. Currently have my own world on hold for our little 5 month old and missing it. sigh, but love her dearly.

    thea.
    (spoonfulzine)
    xxox

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    1. Hello Thea! It's great to see you here!

      I hear you! Nothing is quite as important as our children but they do change things a little, right? When I went on sabbatical after the birth of Angélique my Phd supervisor said to me: 'You are having a baby! That's much more exciting than a finishing a thesis!' I simply wanted to cry out: 'But my thesis IS my baby!' There's a time for everything in life and I am only now beginning to get my brain back :-) Take heart, Thea. Your life won't be on hold for ever but it will be made better thanks to your child.

      Stephanie

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  42. Dear Stephanie,

    I have sent an email to you a few moments ago and hope you read it soon. I am sorry that I have been silent for so long. The email will explain.

    Your news is wonderful for both you and your daughter. I do wish you both well and will think of Heloise on the 17th.

    Best wishes for Christmas.

    Warm regards,

    Robyn

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    1. Oh, thank goodness, Robyn. I was beginning to worry about you. I will read your e-mail as soon as I get a little quiet time later today.

      Thank you so much for leaving this comment. I wish you a very peaceful Christmas too.

      Stephanie

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  43. Truly wise words in the comment to Thea above and ones I needed to be reminded of. Thank you and happy Christmas to you and yours xx

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  44. La date importante s'approche et mes voeux vous acompagnent, vraiment, de tout coeur! Vos nouvelles sont tres belles et j' espere que la nouvelle annee apporte l'epanouissement que vous meritez.
    Meilleurs voeux!
    Olympia

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  45. I so hope the interview goes well tomorrow. Will be thinking about you all!!!

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  46. How wonderful for both of you, dear Stephanie! I, too, hope all goes well!
    Hopefully, you will continue to make magic with your hands amidst the PhD work... :)
    I caught up with your posts and, as always, am enchanted with your beautiful children and splendid creations...
    And a Happy Belated Birthday! Always fun to know a fellow November baby... :)
    That cake looks amazing...thank you for sharing the recipe...
    Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!
    xoxo,
    - Irina

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  47. Dear Stephanie,

    I am so sorry for replying so late!!! Congratulations to your and your daughter. I am so pleased you can finish your thesis! Hope Héloise's interview went well and she is accepted at Cambridge. Such an honour. Hope you will keep us posted?!

    Please don't worry about your surprise. We all lead busy lives, I understand!

    Thank you for your sweet emails and support the past year. I am grateful to have you as a blog friend! Hope we will be able to meet in person one day.

    Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and Sparkling New Year!

    Love, Madelief x

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  48. Congratulations.on your plans of change...I usually shrink from it, but can also be excited by it. I am moving to a new space for my teaching next year and it will be completely different from what I'm used to...so yes, change is afoot with me too.

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  49. Stephanie, I hope you had a wonderful family Christmas and may 2014 bring you all good things, with love, Linda x

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  50. Congratulations to you and your beautiful daughter! And happy to see a gorgeous creation. Clipping Path

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  51. So much good news! Congratulations to both of you! Best wishes for the coming year!!

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