Tuesday 31 December 2013

My month in numbers - December

So as December disappears over the horizon taking with it the whole of 2013, it's time for the last month in numbers as organised by Julie Kirk
I normally end with the communal count but as it's the end of the year, let's shake it up a bit and do it first. How many Christmas movies is too many Well, apart from watching Love Actually in the weekend before the big day - and let's face it that's almost compulsory in our house - I saw bits of many a Christmas film but no other whole films. This was due to the discovery of a new channel on the TV called Christmas 24. Non stop, back to back Christmas films. All manner of films, and whilst I didn't actually watch a whole one from start to finish but dipped in and out of various films, it did help get into the Christmas spirit while I was catching up on the ironing or wrapping presents. How many it too many?  Probably a late morning and whole afternoon of films you wouldn't otherwise have chosen to watch if you didn't have a basket full of ironing and a pile of presents to wrap.

How many Christmas events did you attend? - well apart from the actual Christmas Day and Boxing Day, I didn't actually go to many events. My husband's birthday is on the 12th so we had a big meal out with friends then, can I count that as a combined celebration? I did wear a dress with sparkles on it and there were lots of Christmas decorations in the restaurant.  Oh, and we did go to friends on Christmas Eve for wine and 'nibbles'. So I'm going to claim that too. But one of the more unusual events was watching the 6th Form Entertainment on the last day of term.  Historically, the Year 13s organise half hour's worth of sketches for the rest of the school to watch.  Typically they do sketches with them doing impressions of the teachers, and this year there was also a 'promotional video' for the school.  The last item is always musical.  Always something that has been a sensation during the year.  Every year they promise that a)it will be suitable for all age groups and b) the boys will not take their clothes off.  {That film 'The Full Monty' has a lot to answer for - that's all I'm saying.}  I kind of had a feeling that they may not have totally understood the rules when the first few bars of 'Blurred Lines' came over the amplifiers.  A girl, strutting her stuff in black and white  striped leggings and a black and white striped jacket took the part of the male singer and behind her were two rows of 17/18 year old boys dressed only in white t shirts and black rugby shorts. You can see where this is going can't you?  Oh yes, at the end we had her singing at the top of her voice and about 25 boys 'twerking' behind her.  Swiftly followed by 25 boys and one girl getting a telling off in the head's office. 

So what can we count for the last month? We could count the number of chocolates I've eaten but it's going to be too embarrassing so we'll pass over that.  Number of sausage rolls? Now you're just trying to make me feel ashamed.  
For those who enjoy a good pattern in dates, my nephew's son was 10 on 11.12.13.  That's a good one to record isn't it? We had five birthday celebrations. Including one on Christmas Day. 232 candles. 
My son drove 375 miles to come home for Christmas and he's just driven 375 miles back. One half of that sentence makes me happy and the other half makes me sad.  Thankfully we have the annual Keyworth Christmas photo to record the visit. 
So that is it for the last month of 2013.  I only joined into this project mid year so I am looking forward to completing the whole 12 month set in 2014. 
Farewell to December and Happy New Year to all!  

Sunday 29 December 2013

The inbetween time

So it's been kind of busy since I last blogged. There's been much eating and drinking and socialising. We managed to get group shot of the whole of my side of the family
It's been a while since we took a photo of us all together and I think this could be the picture that gets me back into Scrapbooking mode.
It's been so long since I blogged, I have had time to grow some facial hair 

We had a fake New Year last night. Friends of ours who moved to Belgium were visiting locally and the friends they were staying with hosted a Mexican themed evening, complete with moustaches and red flowers for your hair. Oh, and margaritas of course! 
So I've noticed people mentioning intentions to join in projects. Project Life, One little word etc and part of me wants to join in, yet part of me thinks I would fall by the wayside as the weeks progressed. I am keen to make a commitment to something, but what to chose?
In the meantime, I've ordered a jelly roll of fabric to start my next quilting project. Never made a jelly roll quilt before and I can't wait for it to arrive so I can start. Time I turned that dining room back into my crafting space ;-)
So hands up, who's intending to join in a weekly/monthly project? And if you are, tell me what it is so that I might put it on my list of possibles to join in too! 

Sunday 15 December 2013

Simply a Moment in December

The table is strewn with triangles of fabric; a magazine is open at the 'Quilt block of the Month' page. I am close to finishing it, and have learnt several new techniques. I have enjoyed an hour or so of quiet concentration. On the arm of the armchair in the lounge, my iPad springs into life.  Surprised, I rush to see what it is. In total surprise I see that it is a FaceTime call from our daughter.  A rush of love flows through me as I see her face glowing in the freezing temperatures of New York.  I can see the skyscrapers behind her as she explains they are at the top of the Rockefeller Centre.  She says she is sending me photos that they took this morning, during a horse drawn tour of Central Park. 
I can see the pure joy in her face and hear it in her voice.  This is her dream, to visit New York in the snow.  Years of watching Christmas films have sparked this desire, the atmosphere of a winter wonderland. And now she is there, living her dream.  It reminds me of the song "you've got to have a dream, if you don't have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?"
The dog, upon hearing her voice and seeing her face, is totally bemused, running to the front door, whimpering and barking.  She misses her 'mum'. We finish the call and go into the kitchen to find a treat to calm her down. 

Simply a Moment is organised by Alexa, pop over to her blog to share more moments this month. 

Friday 13 December 2013

It's a cracker!

What did Father Christmas say to Mother Christmas when she asked him what the weather forecast was? "Looks like rain, dear (reindeer)". 

I think it was last year that my daughter was invited to a party where the dress code was Christmas Jumpers.  Now, we don't really have too many novelty jumpers in our house and she didn't want to go out and spend money on something sh'd only wear once. So she presented me with an old red jumper that she already had and a pair of novelty mittens, and asked if I could turn them into something suitable.  The rest, as they say, is history.  
Today, our school was participating in Save the Children's Christmas Jumper Day and we all had to wear something appropriate.  So guess what was pulled out of the deep, dark, recesses of the wardrobe? 
Yes the clock is ticking towards end of term, tree  is up in reception 
And novelty singing penguins are in the staff room
Sixth form pantomime was this week with rehearsals going on in the hall next to the secretaries office and we all found ourselves humming along to Madness's "welcome to the house of fun" and Shania Twain's "man, I feel like a woman". Both of which get pretty annoying after two solid hours. I'm not sure how they were woven into the story of Cinderella but rumour has it that the performance was hilarious.
Today was the Christmas Fair and when we go back on Monday, we'll be into the final five days. Meanwhile, back at home, cards are written and almost all presents bought. As I have 14 people here to eat on Boxing Day, I probably ought to be making lists of food and drink. I feel too calm, too organised. There's something I've forgotten for sure. But until I remember what it is, I'm going to kid myself into believing that I've no need to panic.  I wonder what it is I've forgotten?  

Wednesday 4 December 2013


Why ... were there only two other people in the post office this morning?  Normally that place is heaving and in the lead up to last posting date I was expecting queues out the door. 
Why ... so some people decide to stop either right at the top or right at the bottom of an escalator?  This is a disaster waiting to happen if I am the person behind them and not able to stop myself from walking into them!
Why ... do traffic lights stay on red for so much longer when you are in a hurry to get somewhere?
Why ... did my daughter send me a link to a grey coat she wanted for Christmas when she really wanted it in black?
Why ... did she remember to tell me this 5 minutes after I finished buying the grey one online?
Why ... do days off go so much quicker than days at work?
Why ... does the dog think that after I have told her 'no she cannot have any of my sandwich' whilst sitting on my left side, I am likely to say 'yes' if she moves to the right?
And lastly
Why ... is there so little fudge left in the tin after my baking session at the weekend?

Sunday 1 December 2013

The last precious

Can you believe that we have had a whole year of sharing our precious things with the monthly meme organised by Sian?  I'm kind of sad and hoping that she has something else in store for us next year - otherwise what will we all do on the first Sunday of the month?
۞ ۞ ۞
When the children were little I bought two little sacks for them to leave by their bed for Santa to fill with little bits and pieces. Their main presents would be waiting downstairs by the tree - he could only bring so much up the stairs!
Thank you Blogger for turning my photo on its side :-s

As the years went by, a kind of tradition evolved.  They would always have a bag of chocolate coins, a Lindt chocolate Father Christmas, some new pyjamas, undies and socks, a book and a couple of other little things.  I did not realise at the time that I was starting a tradition.  Who could have guessed that at age 27 and 23 they would still expect, no - make that 'insist', the little plastic sacks to appear each year. Only now the 'little' bits I put in there cost an awful lot more than they did 20 years ago.  Pyjamas for toddlers are a lot cheaper than those for grown ups!  Those stockings get more expensive every year.  But I am not quite sure who gets the most enjoyment of it - them or me, as I do enjoy a bit of a challenge to make sure they get almost exactly the same things.  It's a lot easier to get stocking fillers for girls.  Nail varnish, eye shadow, bubble bath.  Hard to find the male equivalent! My favourite comparable item this year so far is a nail varnish called 'Red Hot Chili' for my daughter and a grow your own chili pepper kit for my son.  (He's a keen cook and enjoys trying to grow his own ingredients!)
So that's it - 12 Precious Posts written, 12 times I have been round the world in blogs seeing other people's stories.  Three years in total of storytelling on a Sunday.  Sending out a big thank you to Sian for hosting this monthly event and having the idea in the first place.  I'm going to miss this little project and am hoping that she has something else up her sleeve to take its place.  What have you got in store for us for 2014 Sian?