If it's October, it's nearly Christmas

October is birthday month for myself and many of my family and friends so it is a joyous month of celebrations and fun. This year has given us a different slant on 'joyous fun' but none the less we have so far managed to enjoy the times shared with family. A quick breakfast in Rosebank and a lunch picnic in the garden to celebrate the birthday girls' special days.

David and I popped down to Rose Cottage to check that everything was in order. Enoch the gardener seems to have green fingers and he has re-planted, sown seeds and created a 'water-wise' garden except for the roses that still struggle through drought, rain and snowstorms. While we were there we reminisced about all the good moments we'd shared with family and friends. It's really been special haven for us all. While we were there we had a power outage and the dam ran dry which is most concerning. The surrounding farmlands are plowed and waiting for rains. What look liked promising cloud build up led to a disappointing few drops of rain. So here's hoping all will be well soon.

We then drove on down to Hartford House in Mooi River where we were the only guests in the beautiful space. The whole area is being renovated and we met the two women who are 're-doing' the rooms. Anne and Elsabe are fun and vivacious and we pledged to meet again when they came up to the Highveld. Something to look forward to. The 'old house' is situated on Summerhill Stud farm which is home to about 700 horses and some Angus cattle too. Set in the beautiful tree-lined paddocks and rolling hills the horses graze and live in idyllic surroundings. We drove around the farm one morning to and were treated to four horses training on the sand track and viewed many, many stables.

Our 'home' for three nights was a large, spacious suite on the lake with a fireplace in the sitting room, a large bedroom with a bathroom with two baths and a separate shower, a dressing room and loo too of course. Apparently one the Dubai horse owning sheiks enjoys the space too. The staff are helpful and charming and were very excited when they could add to the enjoyment of my birthday by setting us a beautiful table in the dining room with cherry blossoms on the table and a special 'sweet plate' to take to our room where the fire had been lit.

As the heading says 'If it's October it's nearly Christmas' so I feel the need to begin searching for gifts for our various family members and friends before the end of November at least, otherwise I may start to hyperventilate and worry about 'timing'. Although this year should have taught me a great deal about 'timing' and 'whatever will be, will be' (one of my mother's favourite songs) should have become my mantra.

Perhaps I should allow the quiet of Summerhill to linger with me for a little longer so that I can enjoy the silent memories of our gentle few days in the midlands.

Take care all and remember to please say safe.