First, to answer queries from kind but fretful readers – yes, I’m writing. My latest project is a series, of which I’ve already written Book 1 and am at work on Book 2, but as I am, to date, without a publisher, I’ll say no more for the time being. As soon as I find a new publishing home I will a) announce it on this blog and b) open a bottle of something fizzy. Actually, I might do that in reverse order.
In the meanwhile, not only am I writing, I’m also doing quite a lot of faffing. It’s cheaper than shopping, less fattening than eating and better for the spirits than scrolling through Facebook. This morning’s faff involved finding a way to droop-proof my shamrock buttonhole. I can’t claim so much as a corpuscle of Irish blood but ever since I married a Fitzpatrick I have honoured St Patrick’s Day, and as anyone who has ever worked with shamrock will tell you, it droops at the drop of a leprechaun’s little green hat. Today I mastered it. A wodge of wet Kleenex around the stems, then tightly bound with green ribbon. Five hours later, still looking good.
I’m way ahead of my usual Easter preparations this year because I’ll be travelling in April. Coloured eggs are usually a Holy Week job but I made mine yesterday. One of these days I’m going to remember that purple shades don’t really work for eggs. Apart from that I’m pretty chuffed with the results. I particularly like the marbled ones, made with shaving foam and food colouring, FYI. In the field of egg decoration I’ve always bowed to the expertise of my friend Theodora, who dyes hers the traditional Russian way using a broth made from onion skins and fixes leaves and flowers to them before she immerses them in the dye. They come out like this.
When it comes to decorated eggs, she is the business. But now I feel I may have found my own style. Kind of sugared almond hues.
So, shamrock droop sorted. Easter eggs sorted. All I need now is a publisher.