A1 all the way

A1 all the way

Hi there

Thanks for popping in! Trundling down the A1 in the white van. Big jams bumper to bumper. Way too many cars on this little island. I’m guessing somebody’s having a rough day. So whilst we sit in traffic, 2 hours in and still north of Doncaster, I thought I’d chat to you on my phone! Blogging on the go! Can you believe it? I can sit in a truck and write a blog on my phone. What a strange world we live in. Perhaps that’s why so many of us have a hankering to be creative and get with our hands. All the techno-power in the world can’t replace a good old get together with a bunch of like-minded people.

We just had a fab weekend in Leyburn with so many Clarity friends, old and new. The whole event was a pleasure and a privilege . I love our Open Days, I really do! Not only is it a perfect opportunity to hook up with loads of the Clarity gang; I get to talk to and listen to so many people, mostly women, who are just like me. At first glance you may be fooled into thinking we have little in common with one another, except perhaps the stamping or the craft. But then, when you stop and listen and watch, it all starts to unfold. You miss your kids, I miss mine. Your Mum just died, so did hers and hers and hers. Your husband left you; so did mine and hers and hers and hers. You get anxious in crowds; so does she and she and she. You are your husband’s carer; she is too, but has managed to slip out for an afternoon, like you. You’ve had cancer and are doing ok; so has she, but she’s struggling with the fear of it coming back. Your husband died and you just miss him so much; so did hers, and hers. Even after all this time, you still feel lost without him. So does she.

Honest to goodness, if you only knew. If you only knew just how much we have in common, you would be staggered.

For me, that’s probably the most important part of my job; to provide a safe, kind, creative haven for us. Where we can come together and just be part of something good and healthy.

I hope that doesn’t sound corny. It comes from the heart. There is a very powerful energy around Clarity; if you were there on Saturday at Leyburn, you know what I’m talking about.

Yeah. So as I was saying. A huge privilege to know so many good women, strong women and brave women.

Love and hugs

Barb xxx

31 thoughts on “A1 all the way

  1. Hopefully you’re on the move now, always a nightmare travelling south on a Sunday and doubtless the bad weather won’t have helped. Main thing is to be safe!

    Fab day yesterday and lovely to see friends old and new, Josie, Tina, Hazel, Maria, Sam, Paul and you kept us well entertained and educated with Glynis and Chris helping to perfect people’s cutting skills while Jane and Linda had a pretty Make’n’Take for us.

    Today’s parchment workshop was a total blast and I picked up more techniques, hints and tips while (almost) completing the beautiful project designed for us by ‘our’ lovely Linda Williams and totally ‘nailed’ by you (Barbara) with Paul and Tina helping keep us on the ‘straight and narrow’. Thank you all for a wonderful weekend, looking forward to the next one already! xx

  2. Safe journey home . I agree about to many vehicles on the road , most families have at least 2 per house now , next door to us have 4 !! .

  3. It sounds like today was another fabulous triumph. O e of these days I am hoping I can stay for both days. I hope you are now on the move and get home safely..
    Love and hugs to you both xx

  4. Hope you are not too late getting home. Glad the weekend went well, not that I expected anything else. Every Clarity event is always so well received and always, always involves lots of laughter. So wish I could get to join you, maybe one day eh?? Much love xxx

  5. So pleased that you all had a great time yesterday at the Open Day and again today at the workshop. More happy memories made.

    Yesterday, I had my ticket and my lunch, set off at 8 to be there for nine…and then 2 miles down the road the car developed a problem with the gearbox. Third time in twelve months. Talk about gutted. I drove back to our caravan and told myself there’ll be another Open Day next year…and a new car!

    We nursed the car back down the A1 yesterday afternoon amazed how quiet it was. Sadly, it isn’t for you. I hope you are on the move again now and have a safe journey home xx

  6. Hi Barb, yep, I can feel the Clarity community spirit from here, even though I’m far on the outside looking in. Wishing so much that I too could be on the inside and part of, and surrounded by it all. As for the creative haven, I nearly opened my window yesterday and today, and chucked my Groovi stash out… So, I’m also defo NOT feeling the calm, and good, from being creative just now. I hope the traffic eases soon for you. It may just be that there’s all the folk from the road racing heading home too. Hope you have a good sleep, and you’ve planned a day off tomorrow, before you get going for TV next weekend. Love you xxx

    1. Don’t chuck anything out, the bad days will pass and you will need your gear again. I know that with all the rain we have had (rained stair rods here again today) it can be depressing but remember the sun is only hiding behind the clouds and will soon come out again. 🌻
      Keep smiling, it will get better.
      Love and hugs 🍒

  7. Hope you are safe at home by now.
    I hope I will be able to participate one Day. Are you going to show us the project you all made.

  8. Clarity Rocks. Clarity Matters. YOU matter because you are the glue that holds it all together. Love your blogs which I read every day. Just ticked off because I am unable to get to the events which so many people rave about. Glad it all went so well and that you have a safe journey home.

  9. How true the words are. As I stood waiting for nine o’clock, Barbara you came out and welcomed us and said “Just another 5 minutes”. Through the door, I could see Hazel, Tina, Maria and Paul setting up. I said to my friend that it was like coming to see family. Keep on doing what you are doing. It was such a great weekend.

  10. Hope you are home by now or at the very least almost home. Puts a bit of a cloud on the day for you being stuck in traffic, but I’m sure that once you’ve got in and had a nice cuppa you”ll be fine. Quite agree too much on the roads these days. So glad though that you had another amazing day.xxx

  11. Brilliant two days. So lucky to be able to get to Leyburn see the demos and meet up with friends and make new ones.
    Hope you’re not too late home and Tina, Paul , Jane et al as well. Have been thinking of you all xx

  12. Hi Barb,
    Well hopefully you’ll be well on the way to being home now. There was a heck of a tailback from Scotch Corner going South as I was going North, so I had a nasty feeling that you might get caught up in it. Had a fabulous two days with you and the team and cannot thank you all enough. I was really chuffed with my bird today – it actually looked fluffy! It has been fabulous to meet up with friends again and to also make new ones, as you said all like minded. There has been a lovely buzz all weekend. Sorry Linda couldn’t make it but you stood in brilliantly for her and Tina and Paul were a great help as well (& of course Heather did a great job too!) . Looking forward to next year already! Love and hugs, Alison xxxx

  13. Just loved my first Clarity weekend. Loved watching the demos yesterday and also getting hands on with the make and take. Really liked your suggestion to have more make and takes next year. Hope that works out for you and for us. The tips you and the team give along the way are invaluable. Today was fantastic and you did a fantastic job of keeping us all in order!! Lol. Really enjoyed doing my wee bird and learned so much. Now all I need to do is put it all into practice. Tonight I enjoyed a lovely meal in Aysgarth as I did last night. Took out my groovi stuff when I got back to the B&B but succumbed to tirednesss and started knitting socks instead. I can do that lying back on the bed!! Heading home tomorrow. For everyone’s sake who is on the road tomorrow, hope there are no delays. Sorry you are held up. You must both be exhausted but at least you are safe. Take care. Hope the weather is kind. Lovely to meet you and some of the Clarity team. What a lovely bunch of people and that includes your customers. Thank you for a great weekend and a fantastic raffle prize. Once 91 and 93 had been called, I decided I was unlikely to win anything with 92 which was absolutely fine but it happened. Going home to watch Leonie’s last shows and then I’ll try out the stamps. Thank you for everything. Waffling now as my brain is switching off! Keep up the good work and take care. Hx

  14. Yesterday was my first time and time flew by. I really enjoyed watching the masters at work, doing the snipping and the Groovi make and take. Well impressed! Hope we can keep Going! More make and takes would be great! Thank you so much for your hard work!

  15. What a lovely soul you are. So many people would be on the journey home, working out how much money they had made. You are thinking about all the people you met and what it did for them. Say no more.
    Hope your journey improved and didn’t take too long. Have a good week. Hugs. Annette X

  16. Safe journey home. Give yourself a bit of down time tomorrow let your amazing team clear up. You put so much into these open days but it is really appreciated my all the Clarity gang. Thank you x

  17. Hope you are now home safe and sound. It must be really hard work to organise such a big event and we are all very glad that you do. Marley and I had an amazing day. I feel very blessed to have spent a whole day with such lovely people. Thank you all so much xxx

  18. This weekend has been an absolute blast. And it’s always a pleasure to be able to come and join you and the rest of the gang at the open day.
    The workshop today was brill. I thoroughly enjoyed the day. It was so good to see how out of nowhere all these little fluffy red birds appeared. So cute. I will be finishing mine off very soon but for now I’m off to bed.
    Hope you get home soon safe and sound!
    Thank you Barbara and Dave for letting me be a part of your team!
    Love and hugs xxx

  19. Hope you are now home and tucked up in bed
    I live this side of Doncaster you could have called in for a cuppa and something to eat
    I had a wonderful day on Saturday the whole team just gave everyone a Brilliant time
    I could have watched you demo all day the artwork you created was superb
    Any way hope you get the chance to chill and recharge your battery tomorrow
    Hugs and thanks for making a difference T x

  20. So pleased that the weekend has been such a success for everyone. Yes, it is true Barbara that we all have so much in common we have to see the similarities rather than searching for the differences all the time. Hope you are now safely home after all the hold ups. x

  21. Barb, your are in good company then, good strong women (and I am sure some men too), but yes women seem to have this ability to carry a lot on their shoulders, so they should have time to enjoy themselves and immerse themselves in craft. Hope that you got home safely in all that traffic. Take care all. Bx

  22. Had a great time on Saturday, spent lots of money on brilliant products. Have to try the workshop next time. A little moan coming, why can we not have MORE weekends “up north,” they are so uplifting, just like you Barb.Just read Fridays blog, I do, every single day, mostly on the same day. Take care, always.

  23. It was my first time at an open day and oh boy did we enjoy it. Seriously can’t wait for next year to do the open day and workshop with my little person in tow. Thanks to everyone for making it a wonderful experience.

  24. I had an amazing weekend, thank you , so much.
    Barbara Grey you and your team are inspiring,
    kind and thoughtful .
    Again thank you xxx

  25. Having crafted for most of my life, owned and art and craft shop for over 18 years until retirement some years ago. I would have loved to be atvLeyburn, but health has prevented me.
    I still demonstrate occasionally for Charity and my observations over many years , makes me realise how crafting brings people together, saves our sanity at times, and give us joyful times spent with others. Clarity, Cardio and Lavinia stamps are simply the best, I know that Cardio and clarity are run by creative, witty , wise girls with hearts as big as mountains and it shows in the products and companies.
    I am sur Lavinia are the same. Girls who want to share their experiences and expertise, long may they continue

  26. Had a great weekend and thanks to Barbara and all her team for the hard work and dedication that goes into giving us such a memorable weekend. We have just got back having made a long weekend of it and topped it off by visiting the cinema to see Downton Abbey. Well worth seeing. Take care all of you. xx

  27. Hi Barbara, I haven’t posted on here for ages but this blog brought me to tears. I cry a lot these days, my husband died early hours of 10th July ( his birthday ) and I’m so miserable and want him back so much. When I reached the part about “losing their husband ” the tears just poured. I’ve always crafted but find myself with no interest in anything at the moment. I’ve forced myself to join an art group just to get out of the house and have someone to talk to but it doesn’t start for three weeks.
    I’d love to come to an
    open day etc but they’re all so far away and I’ve lost my chauffeur.
    Sorry for such a miserable post but it helped a bit to write it.
    Love your work. Patricia

    1. Sending lots of love your way, from New York, Patricia. You’ll be back on the craft bus before you know it, it’s not going anywhere.
      In the meantime, be kind to yourself. One day at a time xo

      1. Thank you so much for your kind words Grace. I’ve given myself a sharp talking to since a visit to my doctor and decided I must look at this not as an end to my life but rather as a new beginning. I’ve booked tickets for my daughter and myself at the NEC and hope to see your mom there.It’s where I first met her 25 years ago and found her so inspiring and passionate about craft that I bought practically every one of the “clever corner” stamps which she was demonstrating. As you so rightly say one day at a time is the way to get through it. xo

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