Monday, February 28, 2005

Sweet papers

Writing about the stained glass window yesterday, set me wondering - when did I first find the interest in looking at them, what first fascinated me about them.

And. a childhood memory came back to me, a lot of sweets, like Roses, used to be wrapped first in a piece of silver paper, then in an outer transparent coloured sheet. As a child I can remember my Dad giving me the coloured sheets to look through, to look at various objects through, or to hold up to the sky to look through.

Maybe that`s where it started from.

I wonder how many others remember doing that?

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Fascinating windows

I love stained glass windows.
I can sit and look at them for hours!
Looking at one this morning with the sun streaming through it, making bright colours on the floor it set me thinking…. what a difference light makes to a window.
On a dull day its just plain, but on a bright day like today the window really comes to life, it becomes bright and vibrant. Is that how we are when we know the love of God, do we become alive and show it?
When it’s dark outside, the window from the inside looks dark and uninteresting, yet with the light on the inside it becomes a thing of beauty on the outside.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Who`s cooking?

Watching a cooking programme on TV started me thinking….
who really prepares all the items for his use, does he actually do the shopping, then peel, slice, chop, weigh out everything himself or is it all done for him?
It’s a very deceiving way of making cooking look easy, when you just put the ingredients together without having to prepare them first, which is the time consuming thing.
And, who washes up all those numerous containers that held the ingredients and all the pots and pans and utensils used?!

Friday, February 25, 2005

New Kitchen - New Life

A new kitchen - A new life -
that`s how it seems to be feeling to me.
It seems in so many ways a fresh start to a new way of living.
Maybe that sounds odd?
Maybe its just that its coincided with my thinking on time and priorities and responsibilites, and with the changes I`ve decided (been led?) to make. And which I feel better for having decided to do.

(Well, we`ve almost got the new kitchen, except they sent the wrong cooker so we`ve to wait a few more weeks for the right one! And I`ve still to decided what`s going where in the cupboards!!)

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Who wants to buy it?

Driving along this afternoon, I saw a most unusual thing for sale. I was passing a place which had a few cars for sale, and, in the middle of the row of cars, with a big For Sale notice on it was a Fire Engine!

What, I wondered, would anyone want to buy a fire engine for?
Couldn`t very well go out for a Sunday afternoon ride in one!,
Might be a novel way of getting to work quickly though! - now there`s an idea!


If you`re still puzzling over the Odd one out of last week -
the answer is the Oblong.
All the other shapes are used on Bank Notes to make them easily recognisable by partially sighted people.
e.g. £5 has a circle, £50 a triangle etc...

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Delicate strength

I`ve been looking at snow softly falling today.
It`s so beautiful.
Each flake on its own, so delicate and fragile.

Yet, isn`t it amazing how something so small and soft has such power and strength when all together.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Knowing people

Reading several tributes today about people who have died, got me thinking….

Isn`t it sad that we have to wait until people die, to learn about them by reading about their obituaries. People who we just see week by week, yet really know very little about. And about what`s shaped them them into the person they are. The interesting job/s they may have done, or achievements they`ve attained.

Is there a lesson there for us?
Should we talk to people more?
Yet, perhaps people want to remain private and keep things to themselves?
How do we know whether to ask or remain silent?

Monday, February 21, 2005

Decision made!

My thinking and pondering about Time over the past weeks has finally led me to action! I`ve decided to cut a few hours off my working week and I`ve told the boss of my intention.
I feel that`s what I was being led to do, and I feel a sense of `lightness` for having made the decision.
Some words yesterday also struck a chord with me:
"Leaving all behind us,
may we hasten on,
backward never looking...."

Sunday, February 20, 2005

My Dad

I`m in a sentimental kind of mood, have been all this month really, so I`m going to indulge myself and write about my Dad. Why? I suppose because I don`t want him to be forgotten. I don`t mean that I shall ever forget him, I`ll never do that, but because it`s so easy for people to kind of disappear once they`ve died, isn`t it.

One distinctive thing about Dad was that he always wore a suit, for Sundays, for work, for holidays, at home, absolutely all the time, he never wanted or had any casual clothes. And he`d always wear a trilby hat, when out whatever the weather, even on the hottest day. We used to say to him “you don`t want that on today”, but he`d not take any notice, he`d not even go out without his jacket on.

He came from a fishing family, but didn`t go to sea for his living because his father had told him there was no living to be had from it in the coming years, so he went into a gents outfitting shop, where he worked until he retired. He could have become manager, but that wasn`t for him. He wasn`t that type of person. When he became forced through circumstances to be in charge of the shop, he would only accept it as being an `acting manager`.

His spare time used to be spent looking after the garden, although as he used to say he didn`t really like gardening but did it because it was there! The back garden he used to grow vegetables for us although he never ate vegetables himself. I used to enjoy spending time out there with him, especially around Easter time when on Good Friday we always used to set potatoes, carrots, beetroot etc.,

I always loved doing things with him and seemed to share much in common with him. He was also good as scheming and making things from cardboard and made me lots of folders and different things, or else we`d work together on doing them. I also learnt to do dressmaking from him. (something I`ve not done since he died, I haven`t the heart to somehow) How I enjoyed my times with him.
I can remember childhood holidays at Lowestoft, on the beach (still in his suit!), he would help me make houses in the sand. (yes, houses, not castles!). and I can remember on Sunday afternoons when very young, sitting on his lap by the fire and he`d read to me, one of the favourite books being Heidi.

He always went to church on Sundays and was a Sidesman for many, many years. A lot of Sunday evenings we would sing hymns together with mother playing the piano. Some of them he`d sing with a strong Norfolk accent, and when I hear certain hymns today, I can still "hear" him singing them in that way. I think his faith meant a lot to him although he never talked about it.

He was quite a reserved, quiet person, with a sense of humour.
He was always there, and life seem safe and secure with him.

Saturday, February 19, 2005


I suppose we all get times like it, but at the moment I`m finding work so uninteresting.
I just feel that I just don`t want to be there.
I`ve just got no interest in it.
Since my work changed on to computer (and I love doing things on computers, so in that sense it`s not the reason),. but now I just imput data and it tells me if the figures balance. Before, I had to work that out for myself. Maybe that`s partly why its so boring now, because the computer takes away the need to think and work things out for oneself.
I feel that I need something more stimulating.

Perhaps that`s why the things I do in my spare time are more important to me, because they do make me think, and are varied and interesting.

Wish it was time to retire!
I know they say “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence”, but I`d just like to try that other side of the fence!

Friday, February 18, 2005

Odd One Out

I enjoy compiling quizzes and competitions,
so here is a puzzle for you today.....

Which is the odd one out?
What do the others have in common?

Square, Oblong, Circle, Triangle, Diamond

I should perhaps say -
What useful purpose do the others have?

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Which Room?

Which, I wonder, would you class the most important room in the house?
Which would be the worst to be without?

Perhaps the lounge?
Or, the bathroom?
Maybe, the bedroom?
Or, the dining room?

Possibly the study?
Or, would it be the kitchen?

Having been without the use of a kitchen for the last couple of weeks, I`d definitely say it’s the kitchen.
I`d not realised how much it`s used,
nor how many things were in the cupboards,
that had to come out and be kept somewhere!

I guess its like everything – one takes it for granted,
until its not there!

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Thoughts on a game

Chasing a table tennis ball across the floor the other evening, sent my questioning thoughts in all directions too!
... What made someone first think of hitting a round object with a bit of wood??!
…. Who first had the idea of playing table-tennis?
…. Which came first, the game or the bats and/or balls?
…. Who decided what size the table should be?
or what shape the bats should be?
and what colour and size the ball should be?
and how the high the net should be?
And Why??
… Who decided on the scoring system?
… What year was it first played? and where?
… Is it still played exactly as it was, or has it evolved?

I suppose, the same questions could be asked of any game.

Strange isn`t it, how one question leads to another, when one starts thinking about something.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Writing`s different

Something that struck me the other day, (no, not physically!), was the fact that at school we were (are?) all taught to write the twenty six letters in our alphabet in the same way.
I can remember writing row after row of each letter, copied from the blackboard, as did everyone else in the class, until we got them right, and the same.
So why is our writing all different from each other? Some people`s so neat and precise, others looking as if a spider has crawled across the page, some very legible, others like a secret code! Is it the pace of life some of us live at, having to scribble things down quickly, whilst others have time to form their letters properly?
Is handwriting becoming a dying art, with the use of computers?

Monday, February 14, 2005

Where are the birds?

Well, I didn`t walk along by the sea today,
the wind`s blowing a gale.
That set me wondering,
what happens to all the birds when the wind is as strong as that? Not just the sea gulls but all the birds, particularly the small ones, like the robin and blue-tits we usually have in the garden. I haven`t seen any in the garden when I`ve looked out today. With the way the trees and bushes are blowing about, where do they find a safe shelter?

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Giving up

It`s the start of Lent, when traditionally one gives up something.
So, what to give up?

Well, one thing I know I`m not giving up for Lent is this Blog!
I find it enormously helpful writing down my thoughts and sometimes my feelings too. It`s helped me somehow to dig down and find out things about myself by just letting my fingers run on the keyboard with what`s on my mind, or with what comes back to my memory as I type.
And, I think I am changing too through what I`m discovering. So maybe what I`m giving up this Lent is some of my old ways and the old embittered feelings I have over some situations, and instead working positively to improve them. To help those close to me as well as myself.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Walking by the Sea

Walking along by the sea today, something I`ve had a chance to do each lunch time this week, what a difference in the sea. All week it had been just gently lapping on the sand but today what a contrast.
From the tranquil blue of previous days it had changed to an angry grey.
Today there were waves, really rolling and breaking, making quite a roar as they broke on the stones and rocks.

It set me thinking how Life can so often seem like that sea.
Ever changing.

Friday, February 11, 2005


Following on from the thoughts that I`ve been having on “time” over the past weeks, I think now that they were leading me somewhere - and that is to whether I should make changes to my working hours.
It almost seemed a coincidence to overhear yesterday someone at work saying that the wage costs are over what they should be. Maybe that is a pointer to me to follow my feelings and thoughts.

Reading my daily devotional notes today they were about trusting God for the unknown, maybe that too is speaking to me.
Not that I`m going anywhere! Nor am I going to make major changes in what I do, but to change slightly a pattern and way of life. And to fulfil a promise I made to my Dad, which until recently I`d not consciously thought about, but which has now suddenly come back to me too.

I also came across this in some cuttings I was looking through...

God give me the strength
to change the things that need changing,
the patience to accept those which
cannot be changed,
and the wisdom to know the difference.

Is it conincidence to come across all these references to making change, I wonder?

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Microwaving`s a mystery

Is it only me, or are there others who just can`t cook with a microwave? Even something simple, nothing complicated!

I`ve just tried for the umpteenth time to do a simple Baked potato, and it just comes out ughh! I`ve tried longer times, shorter times, small potatoes, medium potatoes, big potatoes. Yes, I`ve pricked them first, followed all the instructions in the books, but they still come out with shrunken skins, slimy soft flesh and crispy crystals of flesh in the centres.

Where am I going wrong

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

What is Life?

Does there come a time (or even more than one), in ones life when one stops to think
"What`s life really all about?"
"Where`s my life going?"
"Should I be doing differently to what I am?"

That seems to be what I`m doing at the moment,
and I feel as if I`m being "led" to make some changes.

But, how do I know if I`ll be doing the right thing?

I suppose one can`t really know, but must trust.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Nature`s lesson?

Walking past some gardens today, as I do so often, something caught my attention. I`ve walked past the bare brown branches of these shrubs for weeks, and barely noticed them, yet today something made me look closer. There on the twigs were the tiniest green buds, very small as yet, but a sign of life.
What I had taken to be dead, was infact alive.
What lesson was nature teaching me, by making me aware of that today I wondered.

Monday, February 07, 2005

A difficult day

Can`t think what to write today.
It`s been a stressful day at work,
one of those days when nothing goes right.

But I ask myself, what causes the stress -
myself? or others? or even machines! ?

Why can`t functions keys on calculators
all be in the same place on every model
in the way that querty keyboards are?

Why, when one is snowed under with work
for a deadline, do others around seem more
demanding in their wants?

Still, I suppose if I`m asking myself the questions
as to what causes it, maybe I can find the answers too!

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Marsh Walk

Walking along a path over the salt marshes this afternoon I became very aware of the beauty of nature all around me. It was very quiet, just a wide expanse of creeks, muddy banks, reed beds.

I caught a glimpse of a flash of yellow. I stopped to look and saw about 15 goldfinches, pecking about on the bank, then they flew a few feet along keeping together, then another bird gave what sounded like a warning cry and the goldfinches flew off together again. It was the first time I`d ever seen more than 2 or 3 together. Futher along there were a few oystercatchers wading and probing in the mud. Various calls of different birds could be heard, but to see them was a different matter!

I turned and walked back, the breeze had turned cooler now, it was quite a bracing walk.
Several skeins of geese in their traditional V formation flew overhead. Where were they going I wondered. How do they know where to go when they migrate? What makes them decide to fly and decide which one is going to be the head of the V leading the way?

Nature gives us so many questions, so much beauty, so much to thank God for.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Memory Test

I`ve surprised myself!
I`ve just done the Great British Memory test which was on TV, and I passed with the required 60% !
I enjoy doing IQ tests and usually do well in them, but memory I wasn`t so sure about. So I`m very pleased with that result.

Friday, February 04, 2005


I`ve just been walking along by the sea,
its really peaceful down there,
nobody about, just the seagulls and me,
the sea just making a gentle sound
as the waves turn over on the stones.

Somehow, standing looking at the waves and listening to the sound of them helps me think.
It`s one constant thing in life, the tides ebb and flow daily, sometimes rough, sometimes calm. It`s the same sea that my family must have looked at for generations. I wonder to myself, did they too draw inspiration and help from it.
Strange how when I`ve got something on my mind I find myself standing looking out at the sea.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Time or Money?

That`s the question I keep asking myself today.
What`s more valuable?

A big lesson I learnt those 13 years ago is that
one should make the most of every monent they have.
And I ask myself, am I doing that now.

I suppose I`m still reflecting on time and the speed
it seems to be passing me by.
And the way we`re all getting older.
Money, as I said the other day is essential to living,
but Time is valuable too.
It needs to be finely balanced.
Maybe I need to get the balance right.
Maybe I don`t need to go to work for so many hours.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

The Power of Flowers

Coming away from putting flowers on my Dad`s grave yesterday afternoon something white caught my eye in the grass on the path in front of my foot. It was only about a quarter of an inch in size.
I bent down for a closer look and found it was a tiny beautifully formed snowdrop, less than an inch tall.
Looking round I saw there were more and there were daisies too. So tiny all these flowers, yet they`d had the strength to push their way through the hard earth, and up to the light. They took the risk of being stood on and broken, but they still grew there.
Somehow that small snowdrop spoke to me. (not in the literal sense!)
It lightened my spirits.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


Thirteen years ago about this time on this day, (by the date), I received the worse news of my life - my Dad had died. I know I`d been expecting it, he`d been ill for a few weeks, but I`d only been to seen him the night before, just a few hours really since I`d left him in the hospital bed, and said I`ll see you again on Sunday. I prayed so hard that night for God to ease Dad`s suffering and take him if he would. Yet, I still feel so much guilt about it, about things I should have said to Dad, and didn`t. I just hope he did know how much I loved him.
I remember my `mother saying to me, you won`t go to work this morning will you`it felt a a very hurtful thing to say, as if I could go to work as normal. I remember relatives coming to the house when they knew, just sitting there, talking as if nothing had happened, talking about the curtains, when we`d got them, where etc., and I wanted to scream at them my Dad`s just died what matters about the curtains. But I didn`t. As always I kept things to myself, if was too painful to talk about.
I still miss him awfully, still regret so much. I don`t know if he knew how ill he was, the doctor had told me, but not them, so I had to keep it to myself during those months, and that I suppose made me avoid spending as much time with him as I wanted to for fear that I`d let slip what I knew, but did that make Dad feel I didn`t care about him? that still worries me.