Sunday, December 31, 2006

End of the Year

The last day of 2006, so time to look back and reflect on the year gone by…...

I`ve managed to write some sort of twaddle on here most days of the year, even if it hasn`t been the most scintillating and exciting thing you`ve ever read.

The year has ended better for me that it began. During the first few months I could cheerfully have walked out from the place I worked and not gone back, then during the middle of the year there were big, and I mean Big changes and they turned out to be for the better, and I end the year feeling very happy there and no wish at all to retire or walk out. I suppose that teaches the lesson that one has to work through the bad times to get to the good, and not give up.

As to other sides of my life this year, they`ve been very mixed. Thankfully my parent regained some, albeit it slow mobility, after the fall at the start of the year, but a lot of the time I`ve found it very difficult to have to be so slow when going out or doing anything, when by nature I`m a quick walker and quick person. And I`ve not lost the feeling of being very tied.

As to the new year resolutions I made here at the start of this year - can see that I`ve failed miserable on at least 6 of them. I have half succeeded on the other 5, managing to make a bit more time for myself, to be a bit more tidier and organised. I have at least done some of the needlework picture although not to completed it, and some days have even written my Blog earlier in the day, and I have been out and about a little bit more – even went to the Pantomime this year! But, as to the rest, oh dear!

Perhaps ones I make for 2007 will turn out better.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Ready for the Cold

Well, the "tinsel" that I was knitting over the last few days, wasn`t actually tinsel, it was one of my Christmas presents - three balls of this tinsel like yarn, a pair of needles and a pattern for a scarf. - The finished article modelled here.

It`s certainly warm, and came in very handy for keeping me warm at the recent virtual cricket match in Finland, but as for the colour.... don`t know if it`s really me!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Knitting Tinsel?

What am I doing here? Posted by Picasa

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Settee anyone?

Watching the adverts between programmes on television over the Christmas period, it puzzled me.... why were 99% of them (or at least it seemed like that amount) all advertising sofa`s and settees in sales?

It made me wonder what the sales people and advertisers were aiming at. Did they imagine that people sitting watching the adverts are sitting on something so uncomfortable that they would be enticed to want to dash straight out and buy a new one? And where do they think people, straight after Christmas would get the money to splash out on a new settee? Maybe they think they`ll fool people into thinking with all their price slashes, that it`s cheap.

But, as someone I used to know used to say "If you don`t need it, it`s not cheap whatever the price".
How true that is.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006


Now that Christmas Day and Boxing Day are both now almost over for this year, and it feels quite an anticlimax in a way, after all the work and hustle and bustle of weeks of preparation for it. It didn`t somehow seem or `feel` like Christmas this year. Well, I should say that at home it didn`t feel like it, it seemed more like an ordinary day. Maybe it`s because we didn`t spend it how we`ve normally spent it, doing the traditional things that we do, because we had a third person with us, unstead of just being the two of us. Or, perhaps its just signs of getting old?

The real feeling of Christmas I did find was at the very good services that I attended on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and the atmosphere of being there with others.

It`s two years today since I wrote my first post which was reflecting on Christmas. And, having just re-read it I think it`s a far better post than the one I`ve written today, so follow the link and read that instead today!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Nativity Scene

I share with you today, a view of part of our Christmas decorations. My nativity scene. It`s not valuable in a monetary sense but to me it`s priceless. The stable was made over 20 years ago by my Dad, just out of cardboard which he schemed, cut, glued together, then painted. It`s one of the few items left that he made.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Petrol and Wine

With the campaigns now-a-days that are needed to remind people of the dangers of drinking and driving, what do you think I found on visiting our local petrol station yesterday to fill my car with petrol incase I needed it over the Christmas break?

There, as soon as you entered the shop part to pay for your petrol, was a table with a young man offering everyone small glasses of wine! They were doing a wine tasting, I assume to try and promote sales of it, but as I guess 99% of people going in there to pay for petrol would be the driver and not the passengers, what a very stupid idea. Ok, that small amount in the glass may not do any harm, I felt it was very irresponsible of them, to even offer a small amount. And, thinking further along those lines, why are petrol stations allowed to sell alcohol which could encourage people could buy it to drink straight away whilst driving?

(And, if you`re, I didn`t partake of the wine!)

Friday, December 22, 2006


I feel like shouting "HURRAY".
After days and weeks of thinking I`d never get everything done for Christmas, I can thankfully say it`s all done, the cards are sent or delivered, the parcels wrapped and posted or ready to be given out, the tree is decorated, cards are strung and hung to decorate the walls; the shopping is all done; the cake made, iced and decorated, mince pies made; holly wreaths put on the graves; and the house tidied, and there`s still one day to go! The only thing left to do is cook the goose!

Or, is it too good to be true.... have I forgotten anything?!

Love is.....

I came across a Christmas version of Corinthians chapter 13 on Kathryn`s blog, to whet your appetite to read it all, (by following the link), here are a few lines from it, which seem to me so apt……

If I speak in the tongues of Christmas materialism and greed but have not love, I am only a tinny Christmas song or an out of tune choir.

Love is kind and lets the couple with only a few items go in front of you and your bulging shopping cart.

Love always trusts that the hiding places for presents will remain secret for another year.

Love does not delight in the commercial bandwagon but rejoices with the truth of a baby born in the stable.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

More lights

I apologise to any readers who may be getting tired of pictures of lights, but as Christmas only comes once a year, here`s another pretty scene for you to look at. Then I promise I won`t post any more lights this year.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

Walking along, looking at some Christmas lights the other evening, I nearly jumped out of my skin! It was dark, there was nobody about, yet suddenly a loud deep voice behind me, started shouting "Ho, ho, ho....merry Christmas", I literally jumped forward from where I was standing, should I run, and which way, or what? I dared to look round, there was no-one there. It can`t be Father Christmas already I thought, it`s not Christmas Eve! Where was the voice coming from, it was still singing gruffly away merrily. Then I looked down, and this is what I saw!

This small snowman, about 8 inches high, jigging about and giving a Christmas greeting to anyone who came within a short distance of him.... or was he there as a deterrant to anyone thinking of damaging the lights and Christmas ornaments all over the house? It certainly made me jump.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Being Appreciated

I`m not (at least I hope I`m not) boastful, but I am so pleased, and surprised, by some lovely compliments paid to me yesterday by the new owners where I work, that I want to share the news, but it isn`t me to speak about such things, so, I`m just going to write about it on my blog.

The care and attention to detail that I take in my work had been noticed and was commented on, and my willingness to do the extra items they asked me to at times. And they said if they gave me too much to do, I was to tell them. Now, that surely is a first, for a boss to ask the staff to say if he gives them too much work! Previous ones have just wanted things done regardless of how much one already had to do.

One of the things said was that "they`d love to be able to clone me" and have lots of me!!! Can you image that, dozens of me all over the place!

It was really good to feel appreciated.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Seeing the Wizard

I`ve done soemething this evening that I`ve not done for sixteen or seventeen years!, and that is to visit a local theatre to see a Pantomime.

I was persuaded by a work colleague to go with a group of them who were going, and at first I declined, but eventually they "twisted my arm" and I went. And, I`m glad I did, I thoroughly enjoyed the evening after a nervous start. I found myself relaxing and losing myself in just being there, forgetting the things that were bothering me.

So the Wizard worked his magic on me for a while!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Flagged Down

I was driving home from the "big city" late the other afternoon. It was dark, so I had my lights on. Approaching a town on my route home, I spotted some police cars ahead, parked on both sides of the road. As I got near to them I saw a policeman indicating to me to go left. I assumed that there`d been a accident of something which had closed the road ahead.
I slowed, checked my speed (I wonder if others find they automatically look at that when they see a police car or officer, even when you know very well that your`re not speeding) anyway, I indicated to turn left although I couldn`t see that there was a road on the left to turn into. As I turned I saw another policeman waving with a long red laser like light beam (like something from a Sci-fi film) for me to stop, which I did, as by now I was wondering and anxious as to what was going on.
I wound my window down, and the policeman came over to the window. "You`ve got your fog lights" on he said. "Oh, sorry" I replied, and completely flustered by it, couldn`t remember where the switch for them was! I put my hand to what I thought was it, (at least that was where it was in my last car) "No that`s not your fog lights" he said. By now I was totally flummoxed, and he had to suggest where they were, and the said lights were then turned off.
I expected at any minute for him to ask me to prove that the car was mine, as I didn`t appear to know where things were! But, thankfully he didn`t, he just asked my name, and waved me on my way.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Lights

I always enjoy seeing the lights that people put up on the outsides of their homes and in their windows at this time of year, and the thought that they do it for the pleasure of others as they don`t see them themselves, (unless they sit outdoors), but it makes me wonder......... how long before these health and safety experts decide that they`re a danger and decide to ban them, in the way they ban so many things. After all to anyone driving along on these dark nights it could be distracting and make one look to see what it is thus taking their attention from their driving.

Anyway, from the safety of the computer, here`s some Christmas lights for you

Thursday, December 14, 2006

It`s Postponed

How I wish that I could say "It`s postponed for another month" about Christmas this year.

I normally feel on top of things, but this year I`ve got a list of jobs as long as your arm (as the saying goes), still to do. There`s the cake to marzipan and ice, a present to buy for my parent and I`ve not much idea of what to get, presents to wrap, decorations to put up, presents to post, flowers to arrange, wreaths to get and put on graves, shopping to do.......and so the list goes on. I`m quite envious (and I know its wrong to be envious), of those who can say they`ve done it all. It`s not that I started late doing them, infact I made the puddings and cake earlier than normal, so I don`t know what`s gone wrong.

Well, that`s not strictly true, I do know partly why - I`m down in the dumps over an aspect of Christmas this year. Normally its just my parent and me and we have a nice day not doing much, and its about the only couple of days in a year that the two of us have together, just with each other without a third person. This year, we`ve got to have her "boyfriend" too and the thought of it is really getting me down. I had no say in the matter.

I know that the jobs will get done in time for the day, or at least I keep telling myself that they will. But, it would be such a help to postpone it for a month!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Ten days left

Ten shopping days to Christmas (well, 12 if you count Sunday`s, but I don`t as I won`t encourage shops on Sundays - but that`s another story, as they say) and I`ve got a big headache. All my presents except one are bought - but, what on earth do I buy my elderly mother?

I`ve got her clothes in previous years so don`t really want to do that again unless I can find no alternative. She`s got far too many ornaments and bric-a-brac already, so anything like that is out! Because she`s getting less and less mobile I don`t think tickets or vouchers to go anywhere like the theatre or a coach outing are any good because she probably wouldn`t be able to do it.

I toyed with the idea of a laptop computer, because she`s tried using mine once or twice under my instructions and enjoyed it - but yet it`s very expensive for the amout of use I think she`d really make of it, so I don`t think that idea would work.

I must get her something - but what?? And I`ve only got a few days left to think of it and go and get it.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Splashing water

Walking along the road on my way back to my work place after lunch, I became aware of the sound of water falling onto the pavement. It wasn`t raining, and I looked around to try and see where it was. It sounded to be splashing quite heavily and droppping from quite a height. Must be someone`s overflow pipe I thought, yet I couldn`t see any pipes, maybe someones washing an upstairs window and its dropping down from there, but there were no window-cleaners about.

I looked up higher still, and... what did I see? A most unusual sight. Right at the top of a tall two storey building was the guttering at the edge of the roof tiles, and in the corner of that, where obviously two sides of the gutterings met making a bigger area, there sat a bird (from the distance I was down, I couldn`t tell if it was a blackbird or a starling), and it was having a great time bathing in the water in the corner of the guttering, and sending the water showering down on anyone who happened to walk below!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

On the lookout

One leg or two??

Saturday, December 09, 2006

What did your place look like years ago?

Do you ever wonder what the town, city, village, hamlet or wherever you live, looked liked in the 1800`s and 1900`s?

A friend introduced me to an interesting site the other day, where I could see historic photos of the place where I live. All you need to do is type in either the post code of where you live, or the name of the place. It was fascinating, and at least one of the photos contained a photo of my great, granddad.

Friday, December 08, 2006

I`d love to......

Having said (written) yesterday that I`d write today about the 10 things I`d love to do, here they are, in no particular order.

1. I`d love to be able to draw. I`ve always longed to be able to sketch things, not to be a great artist, but just to be able to do something that doesn`t look as if a 3 year old has done it. (no disrespect to any three year olds who read this!)

2. I`d love to have a family and children to call me, Mum, or Mother or Mummy.

3. Playing the piano is something I`d also love to do well. I was taught years ago to play but didn`t keep it up, and now can only barely pick out the notes one handed as I read the music to play a tune if I know how it should sound!

4. I`d love to find Tunis Cakes in the shops again at Christmas. They are one treat which I miss so much. There`s no other cake like them at all.

5. I`d love to retire. Although having said that, it`s not because I don`t like work, after all the changes and events this year its become a much better place again to work in. Its that I`d like the time to do what I want to do while I`m still young enough to do it.

6. To have more confidence in making conversation with people is another of the things I`d love to be able to do.

7. I`d love to find where I put things, without having to turn the house upside down looking for them at times!

8. I`d love to have a house, or flat to myself to live in.

9. I`d love to have stained glass windows in my house, as I adore the beauty of them, especially with the sun shining through them.

10. I`d love to be able to be free, to be me.

Well, thats ten of my "I`d love to...." Wonder what others would put as theirs?

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Things I`ll never do

I`m cribbing my theme today from reading Dave`s blog, which set me thinking, what would I put as the 10 things I will never do. And I think they would be....

1. I`ll never go scuba diving. For a start I can`t swim, although I possess a school certificate which says I can swim!

2. Nor would I ride a bike. I can`t see what keeps them upright.

3. I`d never smoke a cigarette as I`m dead against smoking, although part of my work involves handling and dealing with them, which is a bit ironic.

4. I`ll never be a nurse. I`d faint at the first sight of a spot of blood and be flat on the floor.

5. I`ll not go down into a cave or mine, not even if someone told me it was full of gold and I could have it all if I went down into it.

6. Picking up a spider in my bare hands is also something I`ll never do

7. I`ll guess I`ll never get married. Because who would want a middle aged woman who has the encumberance of an elderly parent.

8. I`ll never eat foreign food. There`s enough good old British food to keep me going.

9. I`ll never go through the channel tunnel. I hate enclosed spaces.

10. I`ll never walk off the end of a pier. Well, not unless my parent drives me to it!

So, there`s my ten I`ll never do`s.
Maybe tomorrow I`ll put my ten "What I love to do`s"

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Do it Yourself!

I guess we`ve all seen as we`re driving about the countryside and are familiar with the various "Pick Your Own", signs along the way. Usually its pick your own strawberries, raspberries, apples, pears, and other fruits. I`ve also seen one for carrots and another for potatoes.

But, I think the one I saw today really has to beat the rest, it was - Dig your own Christmas Tree. Now who really wants to do that? Is it the growers just getting lazy and wanting the customers to do all the work for them?

Monday, December 04, 2006

Strange Day

I`ve had a strange kind of day at work today.

There`s been a kind of mystery in the air since just before the weekend. No-one knew what was going on, yet we all could sense that something was "in the air", that something wasn`t right, that something was going to happen.

This morning I was working in my office when the boss, who we hadn`t seen since before the weekend, yet came in. She asked me to do a couple of jobs that normally she would have done, and then started a mad clear out of her drawers and shelves etc, saying she had to tidy the office up. Leaving the office to do something a colleague said to me, has she gone yet? she doesn`t work here now I hear. So that was it, I thought. Yet, working back in the office it became an uncomfortable atmosphere, knowing what I knew from the colleague, yet the boss saying things and acting as though things were normal in lots of ways.

Eventually, we were told officially that she was leaving. I`m not going to write here why because we don`t know the actual details.

But, it was certainly a strange atmosphere to work in this morning, and with everyone very subdued the rest of the day.

Sunday, December 03, 2006


The title of todays post, comes from the theme from the sermon of the service I attended this evening. And what a test of endurance that turned out to be too.

I don`t know whether the preacher wanted to make his congregation experience endurance, but his sermon on it lasted for over 35 minutes! That`s far too long for my concentration and there was so much unnecessary repetition too (and I guess for others too, judging by the way everyone seemed to start fidgeting). The whole service instead of being the customary one hour, went on for 80 minutes. Is it any wonder that church attendances are falling? If I had been someone attending a service for the first time, I know it would have put me off and I wouldn`t go back again. Infact, I know for sure that I`ll never go again when that particular person is in the pulpit or taking the service.

Surely a preacher or minister should be able to get across what they want to say in a concise way. There are some that do, and they manage to say far more of meaning and relevance in a 10-15 minute sermon that can be remembered and thought about afterwards, than those that spend longer waffling on.

Infact, I probably `put my foot in it` because as I left at the end, I said to this one that it had been far too long a service!! But, if no one tells them, they don`t know, do they??

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Advent Calendar

Do you know what kind of trees are decorated in India at Christmas time? or what they call a Christmas tree in New Zealand?

As we enter the season of Advent, here`s an interesting Advent Calendar full of interesting facts about Christmas around the world.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Autumn Colours (2)

I`ve had too much of a headache today to think what to write, so here`s another picture of some nice autumn colours.

Strange isn`t it, that somehow if I`m going to feel unwell it`s always on my day off, and not on a working day, wonder why that is. And I had so much planned that I wanted to get done today too. Oh well, maybe next week.