Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Time to Reflect

Another year draws to a close, and I find myself thinking back over the events of the year.

It has been a year of change in many way. If anyone had told me at the start of the year, just how much my life would change in 2008 I wouldn`t have thought it possible.

It hasn`t all been smooth sailing, there have been some rough and turbulent times, times of worry and upset, but following all these storms, calm came.

In the course of just a few months, I was promoted to a job (within the same firm) which is far more fulfilling and enjoyable to me, the type of work I`ve always wanted to do; I found the strength to stand up to getting my parent living in a place more suitable for her decreasing mobility; and took on the responsibility for organising a large event at our church.

I feel I`ve grown in confidence during the year; I`ve made some new friends; I`ve got the freedom of living on my own; and I`ve even given my blog a new look ready for the new year!!
All in all, it has been a good year for me.

What I wonder, will 2009 hold?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


To round up a "loose end", if anyone wondered what on earth I was talking about in this blog post the other day, I`ll explain.

I don`t know what brought it back to mind, except seeing one word..... it goes back many, many, many, many years, to when I was a small child. Well, perhaps not so many! I remember my Dad one day picking up a milk bottle - yes milk came to the doorstep in glass bottles in those days!, and from it he read aloud "Cows ought not to eat nasty turnip stalks".

"Where did you see that", I remember asking

"On the bottle" was his reply, with a smile.

I took the bottle from him and scrutinised it all round. I can`t see that written on there, I said to him puzzled "where does it say that?"

After teasing me a bit longer, he took it from me, and pointed to a word - "there" he said, pointing to the word.

Cows Ought Not To Eat Nasty Turnip Stalks
or, if you look at it another way....
Sam Takes Nancy Every Tuesday Night Out Courting !!

Yes, it was the word - Contents.

Monday, December 29, 2008

29th. December 1969

I wonder how many people can remember what they were doing on this day thirty nine years ago?

I know I certainly can.

It was 39 years ago today that I walked nervously as a teenager into the place where I was to work. How big that building seemed on that morning. How strange it felt. Little did I know then that I would still be there all these years later, having gone from being the junior, to now the longest serving member.

What changes I`ve seen in those intervening years too! Some good, some not so good, some bad. The premises have been altered with major building work at least twice. The warehouse when I started being further down the alley, so that in the winter when it was icy it was a perilous job with a sack-barrow bring stock into the store, - what Health and Safety regulations today would have said to that, I shudder to think!! The position of the main entrance door being changed twice.

I`ve gone through at least 8 different managers as well as a few temporary ones! Been in the employ of 6 different companies as the business changed ownership. As to how many colleagues and staff members I`ve worked with, I couldn`t possibly count them all up, so many have come and gone, yet there are a core 4 or 5 who have also been there now for over 15 years, so in a way are a bit like another family as we know each other well.

Yes, I`ve had times during those 39 years, when I`ve felt like walking out, but I`ve stuck it, and am now very happy in the position and work which I am doing.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


Thought I`d share with you today a look at the Christmas Presents I received. As you can see there are a lot of chocolates and biscuits!

These are a close up of some of my favourites from the presents.
I think the present that surprised me most was when I went into the office where I work on the Friday before Christmas and found a box of chocolates and a box of biscuits with a Christmas card from my boss. That really made my day as it was so unexpected.

And, below is the oddest present I received. I still can`t work out, why the chap gave me a ball of string and a set of record cards!, along with 2 hand warmers and a set of playing cards. - very odd.

Wonder what other bloggers favourite, surprise, and oddest presents were?

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

A friend sent me this, which I didn`t know, and found interesting, so I`ll share it with you all today.

"There is one Christmas Carol that has always baffles us.

What in the world do leaping lords, French hens, swimming swans, and especially the partridge who won't come out of the pear tree have to do with Christmas?

From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in
England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.
It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.

-The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.

-Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.

-Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.

-The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.

-The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.

-The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.

-Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit--Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership and Mercy.

-The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.

-Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit--Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-Control.

-The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.

-The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.

-The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.

So there is your history for today. This knowledge was shared with me and I found it interesting and enlightening and now you know how that strange song became a Christmas Carol.`"

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Today`s the Day!

Happy Christmas Everyone!

I`ve written before about my love of stained glass, especially stained glass windows in churches and cathedrals, so, when I spotted this hand crafted stained glass nativity at a craft fayre just before Christmas, I couldn`t resist treating myself to it.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Views of Christmas (2)

My Mum bought me this lovely poinsettia last week. I`ve never had one before, but it`s a real sign of Christmas coming, isn`t it.
It got me thinking - why do we seem to associate the colour Red with Christmas?
is is just because it`s a nice cheerful warm colour for winter, or is there more to it than that?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Views of Christmas

One of the things that always says "Christmas" to me, is a Christmas tree, so here is a photo of mine. As I unwrap all the decoratons from their tissue papger and hang them on the tree, they bring back so many happy memories. Some of the ornaments must be about 50 years old. Gosh - until I wrote that I didn`t realise just how many years we`ve had some of the baubles and
early plastic decorations. And, even older is the little doll which my Dad was given in the 2nd. world war in Belgium, which always has pride of place on the tree.

I discovered that taking a picture of a Christmas tree with it`s lights on, isn`t easy to do (or is it just me?!). After numerous attempts, with results of fuzzy picture of the lights, this one was the best I could come up with. If anyone has any tips on how to take a better photo of a Christmas tree I`d love to hear how to do it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Santa & Jesus

Time to celebrate!.... no, it`s not Christmas Day, ...yet, ....
but this is my 1,000th post!
How shall I celebrate that?

It surprises me to realise that it`s four years since I started sharing my thoughts here. My first one was written on Boxing Day in 2004, because I had nothing to do that afternoon, little did I realise when I did that, that I`d still be scribbling away (or should I say typing away?) in 2008, and aiming to continue into 2009.

So here`s something I was sent which I think is worth sharing as my "special" 1000th. post.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Jesus is Better than Santa

Santa lives at the North Pole.
JESUS is everywhere.

Santa rides in a sleigh
JESUS rides on the wind and walks on the water.

Santa comes but once a year
JESUS is an ever present help.

Santa fills your stockings with goodies
JESUS supplies all your needs.

Santa comes down your chimney uninvited
JESUS stands at your door and knocks.. and then enters your heart.

You have to stand in line to see Santa
JESUS is as close as the mention of His name.

Santa lets you sit on his lap
JESUS lets you rest in His arms.

Santa doesn't know your name,
JESUS knew our name before we did.
Not only does He know our name, He knows our history and future

Santa has a belly like a bowl full of jelly
JESUS has a heart full of love.

All Santa can offer is HO HO HO
JESUS offers health, help and hope.

Santa says "You better not cry"

JESUS says "Cast all your cares on me for I care for you".

Santa's little helpers make toys
JESUS makes new life, mends wounded hearts and repairs broken homes.

Santa may make you chuckle but
JESUS gives you joy that is your strength.

While Santa puts gifts under your tree
JESUS became our gift and died on the tree.
It's obvious there is really no comparison.
We need to remember WHO Christmas is all about.
We need to put Christ back in Christmas.

Jesus is still the reason for the season.

Remembering words

Isn`t it strange the things that spring into ones mind without consciously thinking about them.

Doing something at work this afternoon I suddenly got this phrase jump into my memory from many, many, many years ago, - "cows ought not to eat nasty turnip stalks"!

And then later today another one came back to me "Sam takes Nelly every Thursday night out courting" !

No, I`m not going mad (or at least I don`t think I am) - there was a purpose behind those phrases, and there`s a link between them too - wonder if anyone can work out what it is? Answer in a few days time, but my next post needs to be a special one.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Move along please!

I had to be a "traffic warden" this evening!......

I collected my Mum early this evening to go to a carol service at our church, and with it being a bit of a foggy evening left early to give us plenty of time so got to the church about 6.05 p.m On approaching the road to turn down into the church car park, it looked to be blocked by an enormous, and I do mean enormous, lorry.

Turning in, I found there was just room for me to squeeze my little car past it. We drove onto the car park and sat there for several minutes and although the lorry had a few lights on, it didn`t show any signs of moving. So, I thought, I`ll go and put the church lights on to show we`re using the church and need the road clear. Having done that, the lorry began to move.... good I thought, he`s going.

But he didn`t he just shifted a few inches nearer the kerb. Then stopped the engine and put the lights out.

So, I plucked up my courage and went out and over to him - it was an enormous vehicle stretching over half the length of the road opposite the church door, and the bottom of his window was above my head height. Anyway, he put the window down when I went over to it. "You`re not going to be stopping there all evening are you?" I asked him "only we`ve a carol service on and they`ll be lots of cars needing to get up and down here". "Yes, I was going to", he said!

He was very polite and reasonable though and said that he`d take it along the road, there is a parking place along there isn`t there, he asked. To which I replied yes, there is a car park very near, [I don`t know why he didn`t go there in the first place!] I said, "you can come back after 9.30 with it if you want, we`ll be gone by then", or, park it and come back to the carol service!

I know it is a public road, and we can`t stop anyone parking there, but I thought I`d better try and do something about it.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

About me meme

Having nothing much to write about today, I thought I`d have a go at this, which Dave had put on his Blog the other day - but, it`s much more difficult than I thought. (most section answers are not in any particular order of preference!)

7 things to do before I die

  • Relearn to play the piano
  • Have time to "be me" and enjoy life with no work and no ties
  • Make a will
  • Learn to say "no"!
  • Become a better flower arranger
  • Complete a needlecraft picture I started a few years ago
  • Take a last breath
7 things I do now

  • Work!
  • Photography (not expertly)
  • Cook
  • Clean the house
  • Feed my pet bird
  • Enjoy driving
  • Try and write a daily blog
7 things I can't do

  • Draw or paint (wish I could)
  • Pick up a spider (or any creepy crawly!)
  • Stand the sight of blood
  • Speak in front of a large group of people. I can read aloud to a group, but not stand and speak.
  • Swim
  • Be in a confined space
  • Push a wheelchair up a hill
7 things I find attractive in the opposite sex

  • Gentle strength
  • Nice hands
  • Sense of security emanating from them
  • Kindness
  • Sense of humour
  • Thoughtfulness
  • Quiet spoken
7 things I say most often

  • Hello
  • Please
  • Thank you
  • Is it?
  • Did you?
  • Yes
  • Morning
Celebrities I most admire
Difficult one this, as I`m not into films, tv (very little), sports, etc...etc... but here goes....

  • Cliff Richard - for the way he is so open about his faith
  • Alan Titchmarsh - for his way of imparting knowledge and information in such an easy way
  • those who genuinely help charities, without it being a big publicity stunt
  • those who don`t brag about themselves
  • Jimmy Saville
  • Lifeboatmen - who become "local celebrities" for a short time after they`ve gone out of their way to save lives in difficult seas and conditions.

7 favourite foods

  • Fish & Chips
  • Jacket potatoes
  • Toad in the hole
  • Roast goose (at Christmas)
  • Ice-cream
  • Steamed ginger syrup sponge pudding
  • Chocolate orange trifle

Pearls of Wisdom

Having written those two quotes at the end of yesterday`s post, it gave me the idea for my next post!

I`m looking for "Pearls of Wisdom" - No, not literally pearl (stones) but wise sayings. I don`t mean the well known sayings like "Too many cooks spoil the broth", as that can be opposed by "many hands make light work".

What I`m looking for, for a particular purpose, are Pearls of Wisdom. You know that kind of thing I mean, sometime in conversation a person will say something, and you think "that`s a little gem", it could be good advice, inspiration or practical good advice.

Anyone got any ideas?

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Mind blank

My mind has been a complete blank on what to write on here the last few days - and I`m still stuck for inspiration.

Wonder what that says about me?...

...maybe that my life is uninteresting? - yet, I don`t feel that it is, well not to me anyway. I`m very contented with it. Maybe I just feel its too "ordinary" to write about; that it wouldn`t make interesting reading.

....What have I been doing over the last few days?...... well, I had friends here for lunch and tea on Sunday, which was nice, but it doesn`t really give much to write about, does it? It`s actually nice being able to have people here and "entertain" now, something I`ve never been able to do before in that way.. and since I`ve had the lounge redecorated, I feel comfortable to have people in too - the room is not now a "furniture warehouse" in the way it used to feel and look.

....I also met a blog friend, Lorna, for a short time on Sunday, and that was really good.

...I`ve been working each day - so not much to write about there. Except,- I`d like to know why it is that when I`m checking lists of figures against others on the computer screen that have to match, that if there`s a mistake in them, its almost always towards the end of the last page - which means that I have to close the computer programme, correct the wrong figure and then go through the whole sheets again! Why can`t the mistake (if there has to be one I`ve made previously) be in the first few lines of work?!

I`ll see if I can "do better" with something to write in a day or two.... or maybe even tomorrow - but as they say "tomorrow never comes" - maybe that`s why they also say "don`t put off till tomorrow what you can do today".