Hi there!

Thanks for popping in. Long day, warm day! All good here. Took the afternoon off, to sit in the garden with the birds, and have a good think.

Wednesday’s blog from the heart, right? So how are YOU? How are YOU coping? Are you still at home? Are you still in isolation? Or have you peeped over the fence yet? Never saw this coming, did we?

I always thought that if the business failed, it would be because of something I had done wrong, because of something I had missed or miscalculated. Never entered my head that a global virus would come out of nowhere and take the global economy to its knees.

So many powerful and successful businesses have been stopped in their tracks! It’s surreal. And I bet all the bosses are wondering what’s hit them.

No wonder I am getting chest pains really! It would be weird if I just shrugged my shoulders and still slept well, wouldn’t it?

THANK GOD FOR OUR HAPPY PLACE IN THE SHAC-SCHACK EVERY MORNING AT 10AM. Seriously. Thank God. It’s creative, it’s fun, it’s service, and it’s therapeutic at so many levels.

After the initial dawning, then shock and ensuing fear around this Corona pandemic, I would say that after 8 weeks of being at home pretty much alone, trying to steer our floundering business remotely from the SHAC-Shack, relying on a handful of good people to keep manufacturing going at the factory, I am finally getting quite a lot of acceptance around it – and all aspects of it.

What will be will be. We can only do the best that we can do, never tire of doing the next right thing, put in all the action, try to stay ahead of the curve – and then hand it over. I can only monitor the input – I cannot control the outcome, the result.

So we will keep going, keep doing what we can, and take comfort in the fact that the whole world is reeling from this crisis. Not just us, not just Clarity, not just the UK. No. The World.

Here’s a close up of the Cockadoodle doodle thus far.

And the story continues. Having a name dilemma. The hen is clear: Dotty. But the male!! Any ideas? HELP!!

Love & Hugs

Barb xxx

59 thoughts on “Acceptance

    1. hahaha my husband’s name is Bert and he is not a cockadoodle, hahaha. He is the most warm and lovingly person on earth and I surely not see an animal in him. But I am sure that if you name hem Bert it will be the best rooster in the world.

  1. Dotty and Doodlebug…..
    You’re doing an amazing job Barb, especially in keeping the Doodle club going. My sister, who totally lacked confidence in herself and her ability, has been persuaded to join…. because I keep singing your praises… and she’s totally hooked. She’s producing some fab drawings and really gaining confidence. Thank you. At the end of all this we’ll all still be here supporting Clarity. It’s a vital lifeline. Carry on doing what you’re doing because we need and love you. Stay safe all of you.🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈

  2. Barbara you are keeping us all sane. I will never be an artist and my colouring may not be the best but I do so enjoy the mornings, thank you so much for spending the time with us and and taking us out of our comfort zone. The cockerel looks colourful how about something like Percival. Xx

  3. All I can say is thank you Barbara for keeping me sane during this mad time. I’m really enjoying spending time in the Shac Shack, & I’ve finally realized that I can draw & color (if only my old art teacher who told me I was rubbish could see me now!!) This lockdown would have been a lot more difficult without you xx

  4. If she is Dotty what about Dash?? He is rather dashing isn’t he!? We are OK here in our corner of Kent. We are just SO fortunate that all the local shops will deliver anything from plants and bird food to milk, bread and FLOUR!! And the local pubs and tea-shop will deliver meals all made and ready to heat up. Lots of choice. The fish and chip man and a pizza van come weekly as well, though I’m not brave enough to venture out and buy anything yet. My friend is 90 next month and we enjoy the lessons each evening but are both happy and content to be in our safe bubble. We don’t of course, have the worries those in business have. Wishing everyone a safe and happy rest of the week!!

  5. I think you are doing so well, sharing your thoughts with us, and your time and expertise, we all learn so much. Please take care of yourself, I too suffer from chest pains caused by stress, it is so dreadful when our bodies take over, Mindfulness has been my way forward for the last 5 years, and you are a part of the process, Thank you xx

  6. I very much enjoy the daily doodling, and I watch every day. Listening to what you said about chest pains, I wanted to tell you my experiences. About twenty years ago I heard a Danish doctor on the radio talking about chest pain causes in women. He said the main cause was wearing bras. I had been getting chest pains and I stopped wearing one. I haven’t worn one for twenty years, not missed wearing it, and no chest pain… so maybe he had a point.

  7. I am not colouring mine yet, but if and when I do, they will be called Sam an’ Ella. Bit mean I know, but couldn’t resist.
    I enjoyed my cuppa with you today and did some doodling while I watched. The hour obviously does you good too, as you seem so relaxed, but you must be like a swan, paddling like mad under the water.
    I hope you manage to sleep better tonight. Hugs. Annette X

  8. Douglas and Dotty make a good pair.
    Please get the chest pains checked out, the sooner the better. Not only will it catch any potential problem before it gets worse but if it’s nothing then it will be a relief for both you and Dave. Better to know than worry, as we both know from experience, so please do not delay.
    Right. Having said my nanny bit, it has been a beautiful day today and not quite as hot as predicted although still pretty warm.
    I had the poetry plates in several folders so I spent the morning re-arranging the various folders putting like with like, and this afternoon tracing out the plates for reference. I love these poetry plates and use them often.
    The stamps jumped into my basket so fast I hardly had time to blink. I think the sentiments being reduced in size will get a lot of use.
    I’m currently watching Paul’s demo and love the idea of making the poetry on separate parchment pieces. With a selection of these and the main designs pre prepared and coloured it will only take moments to complete a card for a special order. Thanks Paul.
    Clarity will always be a happy place for me to be and as we will both be staying in lockdown for the forseeable future there will be plenty to keep us occupied.
    Look after yourself.

  9. Hi Barb, life must be so, so hard for you. Not only do you have all the personal fears, worries, and hurdles that most, if not all of us have, but you also have your livelihood, and that of your staff, weighing very heavy on you. Stay strong dear friend, I’ve had a feeling from the start of this that you’ll rise out of the ashes like a phoenix.

    And, in the meantime, all us Clarity addicts will help keep Clarity going, won’t we. We’re all used to beans on toast diets (porridge for me, can’t eat bread) anyway. Is bread and beans in the food shortage category?

    Glad you took the afternoon off. Opposite for me, got in a right mess! Hope you have a better sleep tonight. Love you xxx

    My suggestion is Dancer. Ya dancer in Scots means excellent, brilliant, fantastic etc. I think that is apt, both in literal meaning, and Scots meaning.

  10. I think he should be called cock-a-hoots as Shac-Shack is something to be thrilled about 😊It’s made such a difference to so many people. Well done

  11. Hi Barbara, I am enjoying the Shac Shac so much, I have even got a little self belief back, and I know if I listen and learn, I can do it! All thanks to you and your generosity of time and skills. Oh did I laugh out loud when you suggested Albert as the cockerel name! I think my mind goes where yours does most of the time!🤣🤣 – I decided to be good and name mine Cocky Locky & Henny Penny.
    I am so with you when you talk about not watching the news, waking up too stupidly early and letting my mind wander off to the dark side. I have an anxiety disorder and it’s so annoying! We know we shouldn’t worry and it’s a waste of an emotion but somehow it’s there and we do worry, it’s just in our makeup. I too get my own ‘personal summers’ which is caused by anxiety, even when I dont think I’m anxious! and I used to have chest pains, but that’s stopped now. I have been taught how to manage myself! (Its a good job someone can!) I have every belief that Clarity will come back stronger than ever, because you are one of the best companies out there, for sure!
    Enjoy this time, enjoy smelling the Rose’s its probably doing you more good than all the tearing around that you have to do! X

  12. Barbara – Firstly thank you so very much for the SHAC-Shack sessions. I’ve enjoyed them all particularly the drawing ones. I feel rather guilty for saying this, but actually I have quite enjoyed these weeks of lockdown just doing my own thing as and when I wish. The mostly lovely weather has helped – reading in the garden, daily walks exploring the area where I live enjoying the wonderful views and all the wildflowers, Zoom book group meetings, WhatsApp chats with friends and family …. But then I don’t have a business to worry about and as an OAP my income has remained constant. I feel very lucky.
    There’s one name I think is just perfect for the cockerel – Chanticleer. It’s from a fable dating back to the Middle Ages and I can just see your wonderful proud cockerel strutting round the barnyard – before the fox gets him!
    As others have said, if you are getting chest pains (panic attacks maybe??) it would be wise to speak to your doctor even though you find that focusing on your art helps. Much better to get things checked out . Rest assured that all your followers will do their best to support you and ClarityStamp – we owe you such a lot. Hugs Carole

  13. Hi Barbara I am enjoying the shack on catch up when I get in from work. Not got to the colouring just yet but I will. I think colonel Tom would be nice for the cockerel . Stay safe and thank you for what you are doing. Please take care of yourself. X

  14. Barbara, you truly are an inspiration to us all. I love your thought provoking and often funny blogs, I read then at the end of each day. You are a godsend to us all in these difficult and lonely times. Take care of YOU lovely lady and keep smiling.
    Cockeral should be called Winston!
    Stay safe xx

  15. Still Working on my rooster and thinking about a name , how about Bruno?
    Looking forward to tomorrow morning. Its a holiday in germany….. der you….g

  16. I think Sir Percival Peckham would be a great name for your cockerel. As many others have said , do have a word with your doctor if you are having chest pains. Don’t do as I did and hope it will go away. I ended up having to have an angioplasty fairly urgently. Take care of yourself, your family need you, your Clarity family need you and we need you. xx

  17. Caractacus Dotty is one of his harem. I know it’s easier said than done, but keep your chin up me duck xxxx

  18. Oh, Barbara! I’m glad you have told us. These monsters need cutting to size. First, get a GP appointment in the morning. You can’t assume the chest pains are the worry even if you have had them before. Get yourself fit for the fight. Secondly, don’t assume Clarity isn’t going to thrive. Remember the 3 day week? You would think productivity would drop 40%, right? It went down 10 -20% depending on industry. The hit was nothing like predicted. Yes, people will buy less while they worry about their jobs and rising costs – unless they are the ones still working, in which case they aren’t spending because they are flat out busy. Don’t assume the market won’t be back. Thirdly, I assume you have seen the government schemes but have you applied for them, where necessary? Again, I haven’t seen your figures but there is a concept in fundraising called the ask – if you don’t ask, you won’t raise anything. This may be little or a lot. For example, I heard that Dave donated your acetate and his time to face mask production. You could ask us to chip in and I happily will. You needed to lead a response but you never needed to fund it. You could also develop it into a sideline, should there ever be time or excess materials, as they are selling for about £7 on Amazon. You could sell them to organisations too – not everything has to be given, as they have budgets. You could also ask for help with the business, if you need it. From us? From the staff as ideas? Diversify into face coverings? Ask for a rent reduction? Write a list and get them out of your head – and off your chest. It is not all on you. Finally, look your worst fear in the face. That seems to be the total failure of the business? If it happens, you will survive and so will everyone else – not much to fear then, is it? None of us would want it or predict it but everyone is safe if it happens. We are very privileged with our welfare provision in the UK. We will get used to living with this virus and staying as safe as possible, just as we have with HIV and MERS. Chin up! And that’s also my name for the cockerel.

      1. Well said, we all care about you Barbara and the most important thing is your health. I know I had open heart surgery in October and my husband has a rare neurological illness with no cure. So you must must must take care of yourself. Sending big hugs xxx

    1. Wot She said. Seriously Ali put it much more eloquently than I could have and she is spot on xxx

  19. Hi Barbara, like most of the other comments I must also say I have really enjoyed Shac shack. I too have enjoyed the lockdown time, I have COPD so I’m now in week 9 of 12 weeks sheilding. Luckily I work for a top supermarket who have paid me in full every 4 weeks as normal. I do feel a bit anxious when I think of returning in June but unless the NHS extend sheilding, I will be going back to work. But until then I will continue to enjoy your wonderful tuition. Look after yourself lovely lady. Us crafters will do all we can to keep Clarity going.

  20. Thank you Barbara for what you are doing. I’m enjoying the doodles and colouring especially after 12 hour shifts in an elderly care home with residents who have dementia and cant understand why their family are not visiting them. Its sad to see them crying as they want their families.

    I miss my grandbabies, children and parents so much but at I know why and fingers crossed I will see them soon.

    Thank you again Barbara.
    The cockerel I agree with others should be dave. Xxxx

  21. How about Potty,
    The world has gone potty, I am going potty and my grandchild needs the potty.
    My heart goes out to you. You do such a valuable job giving so many people a purpose to their day.
    Hugs and love Nadia x

  22. What about Robin as in Cock Robin for your cockerel, not very good at making up names, haven’t thought about mine yet. I’m trying to help support you Barb, put in two orders today, one for Clarity and another for Pergamano, still have one in the post which should arrive any day now.
    Pete used to get chest pains and did get checked out, went on the treadmill, but it was stress with his job, all the same better you get checked out. It’s really unfortunate that just after having your new factory this virus raises it ugly head, but I’m certain that you will be ok, you are the best craft company on the market and us ladies cannot do without your crafty products, just remember we aren’t spending a lot on anything else at the moment and I got one don’t like the prospect of going into shops other than food shops which is a necessity. Try to stop worrying and breath, you are doing such a wonderful thing for all of us and we won’t let you down. Keep smiling Barb you certainly keep me smiling in the mornings. Love & hugs Pam xxx

  23. The pains. Could it be muscular I get these when I lift something too heavy I hope you feel better x

  24. Called my cockerel Kevin. Please Barbara get those chest pains checked out. Probably nothing but best to be sure. Thank you for all the wonderful doodle sessions. Loving them !x

  25. Hi Barbara, thank you for the time you spend with us. You give us calmness and you take away our anxiety by talking so calm and learn us to draw, color and doodle. I think often ‘Hope she will continue as long as the lockdown holds and perhaps longer. ‘ But I would understand it when it is too much for you and you want to stop. You have to take care of yourself and going around with pain in your chest is not the way to take care for you. Good that you took the afternoon off. But I think that you should book a time at your doctor (GP?) to have a check on you. Yes you had this pain before and you know what to do, but you’re not 20 anymore and although you have a big heart for us, you you must check if that heart is working as it should be. So please take the step to book a time. I do not want you to doodle with us when it gives you anxiety even when you say that it gives you a lot of pleasure. Please take care of yourself. A lot of hugs from Yvonne Pel from Sweden.

    P.S. I called my rooster Robin and my tupp Janice, but someone said’Dash’ and that (I think) is also a good name.

  26. Barb, please, please look after YOU! I know that seems impossible, but you have to be your priority right now, sweetheart. We’ll all still be here.

    Love you xoxo

  27. Thank you for every day. You,ve helped my anxiety and panic attacks. The only thing I’ve done in seven weeks is deliver food to my parents. I’m isolating to keep them safe. You’ve been my life line to the world, along with my wonderful husband. CX.

  28. My cockerel has to be Monty after fieldmarshal Monty. Why because my grandad had a bantum cockerel who looked just like this, really small but totally ruled the roost and bossed around the other much bigger cockerel. My grandad fought under Monty and he said the cockerel was just like him! So in memory of my grandad, long since passed away but definitely not forgotten, Monty it is. Keep well and safe and hope tomorrow a better day. Karen xxx

  29. I find the hour spent every morning doodling, drawing & colouring is so relaxing & a great start to the day. I then do any important things that need doing before going back to my project to do some more. The day flies by & no time to think about the outside world.
    I am aware though that stress can play an big part on our health often without us realising it. Although there can be other things that effect us – mine was an underactive thyroid – who would think that little gland could cause so many problems. Now on medication & gluten free which has helped a lot but I do still feel rubbish when the temperature is either very hot or very cold.
    Everyone is different but we often think we are invincible & can keep going like we did when we were younger – unfortunately we can’t – so its good to be able to switch off from the outside world & have some ME time doing whatever it takes to relax – a doodle session, a jigsaw, a good book or a spot of gardening.
    Stay safe everyone & keep on a doodling – can’t think of a name for the cockerel – I did laugh when you called him Albert !!

  30. Barb, I have only just found Shac shac and what a difference to how I feel over the last few days. Like you I don’t sleep great at the moment. Acceptance is the biggest word in the dictionary in my opinion. I have troubles, mainly health orientated and trouble to find my ‘A’ in life lots. Gunna keep trying though, else what is there?? Keep doing what you do, you doubt good. Xxx

  31. Hi Barb, well I think it’s got to be Tom! He’s our wonderful man of the moment. I love 10-11am every morning and I sit and listen, learn, laugh and chat to you! My art gear is all laid out on the table by an open window ready by my Michael as I’m dashing about tidying up etc before my time. Love what we have been doing from day 1 so you need a medal for all your hard work and kindness and you will survive as you are a survivor!
    Lots of love xxx

  32. Hello Barb, love, strength and prayers go out to everyone that is struggling, not just Clarity, but other small businesses too. You are strong and a born survivor, so I am sure you will see Clarity through. I think the Cockerel should be called Valentino, because he is just so flamboyant and “pretty”. Take care and stay safe everyone. Bx

  33. Please go to the doctors asp. It’s better to be safe than sorry. And I know it’s easy to say try not to worry but you do. All of your clarity friends are behind you all the way. It may take a while to get back to normal but we will. We just have to stick together. You are doing a marvelous job keeping us all together with the doodling lessons every morning.I have watched the tutorials on the poetry plates and stamps. I have a few groovi plates which I use. Would it be possible for you to sell the small stamp verse separate so if we wanted to make smaller cards they would just be ideal. A big thank you for all you are doing in keeping us crafters sane. I think that the cockerel should be called Clary. It is part of the company name. Please take care.😇😇😇😘

  34. Hi Barb, please, please look after yourself and get checked out. Clarity will be fine. Your loyal friends are right behind you and will support you. Sir Tom would be about right for cockerel I would think. Xx

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