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A New Year and a winter giftshop!

Happy New Year to everyone!
Our new trading year began on Friday when we decided that, as the weather was calm and lots of people pottering about, we could open the new 'micro' giftshop in Stoke Bruerne.

The butty with the 'open' sign on the roof.  It felt good to get the old girl back in business again!

We had been treated to breakfast with Geraldine and Michael off the Cheese Boat in the Navigation.  They are narrowboat traders like us, selling Welsh cheeses and usually have a similar calendar to ourselves, meaning that we have become good friends over the years.

The 'micro' shop open for business with a small selection of our delights!

It was all too brief, as the heavens decided enough was enough and put a stop to our enjoyment!  The side came down on the butty and we called it a day.  I had managed to sell a few bits and gave out some business cards, so I was delighted.

The previous week had been a bit hectic in between family visits and Richard's work schedule.

Martin (our eldest) helps with the lock flight  (camera shy!)

We had travelled to have lunch at my mum's on Christmas Day, moving the boats down the Buckby flight near Daventry, on Boxing Day. The weather was glorious for a change!

Me enjoying some much needed exercise. The running has taken a proper back seat lately.  New Year's resolution - book a 10k and take part, then I will have to go for a run regularly!

Martin steering the butty and Richard on the motor coming through Weedon

The locks all done, we had a quick bacon sandwich and I walked back up the flight, to collect the car with the dogs.  Meanwhile, Richard and Martin carried on to Weedon for our mooring for the next few days.

Breasted up ready for pulling onto the waterpoint, Martin in charge here.

I walked to meet them, with the dogs, luckily managing to find a space for the car nearby.  They were only around the corner of the canal.  The towpath had been sloppy, so I gingerly retraced my steps and waited for them at the waterpoint.
We moored just beyond the waterpoint, after brimming the tank and doing all the clothes washing. (During winter months, duration on a waterpoint isn't as crucial as the summer, when queues are usual.)

A visit to youngest in Lincolnshire the next day

An early start the next day to visit our other son in Lincolnshire.  Martin decided to stay over at Ryan's, as they hadn't seen each other for over a year! 

Setting off from Weedon early in the morning

After a few days at work, we moved the boats again, as the television signal where we were was dire!  

Hardy campers!  North face of the Eiger this morning!

We enjoyed a beautiful 'crisp' journey down to Stoke Bruerne, proper wintery weather.

Blisworth tunnel hut - much restored.  Used by workparties and scout groups

Passing through Blisworth, where during the summer, we attend as traders their amazing village festival,

Leaving the tunnel behind, we encountered a bustling Stoke Bruerne!

The tunnel was quite leaky, but at least we didn't have any oncoming traffic, as is the norm!

We grabbed this gap for the night and then moved around the corner first thing the next morning, New Year's Day.

That is where you find us for the next few days.  Next to the Cheese Boat near the museum, a better place for trading and altogether less muddy!