It’s Christmas and I’m grateful

three-musketeers

This picture was on display in all of our houses.  It’s a few years old now, but still a favourite.

2016 hasn’t been the best of years.  As a family, we’ve had some complicated health issues, and we lost a dear friend, whose spirit wasn’t ready to die, but whose body had finally had enough.  She fought for every one of her sixty years.  I loved her and I miss her dreadfully.

But today, it’s Christmas, and I’m grateful for the good things.  Because I am a believer and it’s Christmas, this has come out in the form of a prayer.  If that’s not your style, feel free to skip the God parts.  I hope that you, too, have things to be grateful for this festive season and that you like it. Continue reading

Things I learned in 2013: Part One

I long ago gave up on the idea of New Year’s resolutions made on January 1 – mostly because I discovered that, with remarkably little effort, I was capable of breaking them even before the day was out.  What I like to do now instead is use January to take stock, clean house (literally and metaphorically) and work out what I would like to achieve this year (apart from a clean house).

This year, I’m going to get the ball rolling by reflecting on what 2013 taught me.  I think, when I come to write it down, I will find it’s quite a lot and, if that’s the case, I think it behooves me to write down the lessons, so as not to forget them.  (I try never to make the same mistake twice – I much prefer to find new ones.  Sadly, I seem quite good at that.  However.  Moving on…)

So without further ado, working backwards, because that’s what’s freshest in my mind, let’s start with the lessons of this festive season:

1. If you over-cater Christmas with sufficient enthusiasm, you can avoid having to go to the shops until the 2nd of January.  Given that over-catering is my MO at all times, this is not a complete surprise, but this may be a record from a single event.

2. The above will involve you eating cocktail snacks for lunch and/or dinner at least once.  If your family objects to this, they are welcome to go to the shops themselves.  Mine is sufficiently well-trained to limit their comments to Continue reading