“Summer is the time for squabbles. In winter, we must protect one another, keep each other warm, share our strengths.”
George R R Martin, A Song of Fire And Ice
Anyone who has watched more than a couple of episodes of Game of Thrones will know that all that 'winter is coming' stuff is not just about it getting a bit colder. It's about a family's life changing, and the realisation that complaints about kids throwing up in tents and not having enough time to do the garden are just summer squabbles. Winter is coming, and we must keep each other warm.
I made a quilt. It only took me two years.
It's a rainbow quilt, hand pieced and machine quilted, made up of bits of Liberty that I collected during my summer squabbles. I wasn't choosy. If it was even slightly related to the colour next to it, it went in. And even if it didn't.
It has an extra warm batting from the local fabric shop, which is suitable for the coming colder months. Because in Winter we must protect one another, keep each other warm, share our strengths.
My children's strengths lie mainly in recrimination and anger. This enforced familial protection is not one they buy into very easily. I just had a screaming row with Eldest whilst I was actually writing my blog post, which culminated in me holding her close, really hard, whilst she struggled with her anger, her frustration, and both our desires to punch each other in the face.
There's a lot in store for us, this Winter. It's GCSE year. And my mother - The Grandmother, my children's beloved refuge, who lives just down the street - has been diagnosed with inoperable cancer.
And it strikes me as bizarre, right now, the things I used to complain about. The state of the living room floor. How difficult it was to get to swimming lessons on time.
I honestly don't know how many people still read blogs now, and it's so long since I wrote on mine, I don't know who is still around. If you do, and you are, please no comments that will make me cry. If you like, you can tell me the most bizarre and unimportant thing that you complained about this week. Because Winter is coming, and it will be good to have something to look back on and laugh at our whinging summer selves.