Sunday, 27 December 2009

The Aftermath

My daughter calls it 'beige food' and it's the stuff that comes from Iceland (supermarket) and eating too much of it leaves you in a kind of lethargic stupor. Added to that, there is a fair amount of wine flowing and continuous munching on chocolate, crisps and even a cold sprout or too. 2 days on a diet like this and I am less energetic, very wound down, and not particularly motivated to do too much. Yes, it's like a holiday!

Christmas was joyful and probably the least stressed ever since the present buying bit has gone minimalist by mutual consent. Weeks off making stuff has paid off and my family are delighted with their scarves, wall hangings, jewellery etc. (at least they appeared to be!).

Since my kids are all grown up it's a joy to spend Christmas night with no TV, but reminiscing about daft episodes of their growing up years, and then to put the world to rights, finishing off with hilarious episodes Vic Reeves from youtube.
Let's make the season of joy and goodwill last a bit longer than Boxing day.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Christmas Eve

Well, that came around quickly and it's been a dramatic build up here in the UK, with pictures of snow and ice, treacherous conditions and travel misery, or that is how the media paint it. And of course, it's a nightmare if you have personally slithered into a mishap (which I nearly did the other day). But last night, near midnight, I stepped outside the door and relished in that very special hush of a land lightly covered in snow and felt the stillness of the cold air. The trees, now bare of leaves, where silhouetted against the gloom and there was a magical quality in the air, which took me back to my childhood. I will never forget the stories of Narnia, and feeling the fur coats at the back of the wardrobe before stepping out in the crisp air of a winter wonderland. Such was the writing of CS Lewis that I was with Lucy and Peter etc and experienced everything they did.

How amazing life can be when you see things through the eyes of a child. It's not just a robin that happens to land on a branch near you, but Mr Robin, coming to check you out and say hello. Old trees are not just old trees, but the keepers of ancient wisdoms and if you stand near their gnarled trunks, their knowledge can seep into your subconscious and you learn about the land.

So for all the grown up kids, forget shopping, stuffing turkeys and new iphones, just remember what Christmas was like when you were little. All the very best wishes love Annabel

Friday, 11 December 2009

a day to myself

and I have never been so busy. Wrote a list and ticked things off. Usually I don't need to write a list but I have lots of things I needed to complete for Christmas. My extravagance has been Italian plums which I have made into jam (since I am giving mine away for Christmas).

Loved finishing off a machine embroidered picture for my youngest, and now I may have time time to dip into Carl Jung, metaphorically speaking (he is big on metaphors and symbols). I dreamed I lived in a building that used to be a shop, but now cleared out with nothing in it. Gradually, people came along to offer their help, just little bits at a time, and I survived. Just. When I woke up I had the wherewithal to make a cheese sandwich and a cup of tea, and I had a cat. How nice.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Christmas countdown

Discovered steampunk the other day, and yes, it is a bit late in the day and where have I been, but this year we are drawn to a steampunk Christmas. My take on this is to get to the local antique/junk/charity shops and buy stuff for people that is OLD. Failing that, it's a knitting needle thing, which I am now entitled, since I am a granny.

My eldest daughter has bought her fella a gorgeous pair of brass and leather binoculars, and we found a delightful piece of Scandinavian pottery for someone else. I am finding the whole commercial build up quite overwhelming, because there is so much in the way of wonderful stuff to spend on that it would be quite easy to bankrupt yourself buying for just one person.

Enough of all this - Christmas is a time for kids and Santa, and the baby Jesus and talking animals, angels and magic, and the smell of pine and spice. I love squashy presents, still wrapped, and the imaginings of some luxurious, sensual something that I would never buy myself. The presents under the tree hold the potential for what could be and this year, I will try to put off the opening, savouring each one and enjoying the experience. As kids we used to watch the oldies do this and wonder at their restraint. Our own presents and had been ripped from their wrappings at the break of dawn, if not before and it was all over in a flash.

That's one thing I have learned over the years; some things are really worth taking slowly and savouring.