Boxing Day Memories

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26th of December means two things to me. Family gatherings with cold buffet’s were our Boxing Day tradition, but first and foremost it was my mum’s Birthday! She’d have been 100 today!

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Here in the US, Boxing day isn’t on the calendar, but I take the day off work every year anyway, like I said it’s my mum’s birthday!

Families are a mixed bag aren’t they. Mine caused stress every year. Two brothers who didn’t get along must have caused mum endless heartache. The rift was too deep to ever fix. My brothers were always referred to as the “good brother” and the “bad brother”. The bad brother is dead now too, but he leaves behind a legacy of ruin and pain. Does anyone miss him? Who knows? I miss the brother he used to be when I was a kid, and before he turned bad.
Anyway, its boxing day, my mum’s Birthday, and I just want here to be remembered. Phoebe Ethel Newman, rest well in Heaven – we always remember you. Love You!

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Buon Natale & Felice Anno Nuovo

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Here it is again! December I’m talking about of course. The crazy month where we try to be everything to everyone and end up stressed, tired and happy all at the same time. I love Christmas, always have and always will, but sometimes I have to stop and remember what it’s all about. Most people seem to forget we’re celebrating the birth of a baby who (if you believe in Christianity) changed the world! I believe. I’m not a religious maniac, and I don’t even go to church, but I do believe in Jesus Christ. OK, that’s it with religion.

I’ve spent Christmas in England, Germany and the US and I have to say, the atmosphere is so much better in Europe. Not sure why, but you don’t plan Christmas there, you FEEL it. It seeps into your heart. Carol services in ancient cathedrals, traditional, beautiful. Next Christmas I’ll be in Italy, my first Christmas in my new home. Its going to be so special with my husband, daughter and son in law. A dream come true. Until then Buon Natale.

Rugged Beauty in Northumberland

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The colors of Northumberland change with the weather.

A Politically Correct Christmas (I don’t think so)

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A Politically Correct Christmas
~ Anon

Twas the night before Christmas and Santa’s a wreck…
How to live in a world that’s politically correct?
His workers no longer would answer to “Elves”,
“Vertically Challenged” they were calling themselves.
And labor conditions at the North Pole,
were alleged by the union, to stifle the soul.

Four reindeer had vanished without much propriety,
released to the wilds, by the Humane Society.
And equal employment had made it quite clear,
that Santa had better not use just reindeer.
So Dancer and Donner, Comet and Cupid,
were replaced with 4 pigs, and you know that looked stupid!

The runners had been removed from his beautiful sleigh,
because the ruts were deemed dangerous by the EPA,
And millions of people were calling the Cops,
when they heard sled noises upon their roof tops.
Second-hand smoke from his pipe, had his workers quite frightened,
and his fur trimmed red suit was called “unenlightened”.

To show you the strangeness of today’s ebbs and flows,
Rudolf was suing over unauthorized use of his nose.
He went to Geraldo, in front of the Nation,
demanding millions in over-due workers compensation.

So…half of the reindeer were gone, and his wife
who suddenly said she’d had enough of this life,
joined a self help group, packed and left in a whiz,
demanding from now on that her title was Ms.

And as for gifts…why, he’d never had the notion
that making a choice could cause such commotion.
Nothing of leather, nothing of fur…
Which meant nothing for him or nothing for her.
Nothing to aim, Nothing to shoot,
Nothing that clamored or made lots of noise.
Nothing for just girls and nothing for just boys.
Nothing that claimed to be gender specific,
Nothing that’s warlike or non-pacifistic.

No candy or sweets…they were bad for the tooth.
Nothing that seemed to embellish upon the truth.
And fairy tales…while not yet forbidden,
were like Ken and Barbie, better off hidden,
for they raised the hackles of those psychological,
who claimed the only good gift was one ecological.

No baseball, no football…someone might get hurt,
besides – playing sports exposed kids to dirt.
Dolls were said to be sexist and should be passe.
and Nintendo would rot your entire brain away.

So Santa just stood there, disheveled and perplexed,
he just couldn’t figure out what to do next?
He tried to be merry he tried to be gay,
but you must have to admit he was having a very bad day.
His sack was quite empty, it was flat on the ground,
nothing fully acceptable was anywhere to be found.

Something special was needed, a gift that he might,
give to us all, without angering the left or the right.
A gift that would satisfy – with no indecision,
each group of people in every religion.
Every race, every hue,
everyone, everywhere…even you!
So here is that gift, it’s price beyond worth…
“May you and your loved ones enjoy peace on Earth.”

A Traditional English Christmas!

As I count down to my trip to England, all I can think of are Christmas Carols. Nowhere in the world does Christmas better than England. I know I deserted the homeland from the USA over 20 years ago, and would never move back, but I do miss a traditional Christmas. If you listen to this beautiful rendition of “God Rest you Merry Gentlemen” you’ll understand.

 

Christmas in Geordieland!

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Angel of the North – photo from http://www.helenhomesphotography.co.uk

When I moved to the US over twenty years ago, I never thought I’d spend another Christmas in England. Don’t have much family left there, and those we have aren’t very close. Some, I know, don’t really want to be bothered with us anymore. We’re Americans now!

Sometimes things happen for a reason, and this past Christmas, as I sipped my Mimosa, I decided we needed one more Christmas on the other side of the pond, and I wanted to take my daughter and son-in-law with me. My husband raised his eyebrows when he heard how much it was going to cost….”HOW MUCH?”

It’ll be worth it to spend Christmas in the friendliest part of the country. Geordieland!

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Happy Christmas Eve

DSC04085I woke up this morning feeling a little sad. It’s the first Christmas in thirty years I’ve spent without my daughter. I must admit, I shed a tear. She’s all grown up and married now, so we have to share Christmas and Thanksgiving. The first one is tough, but maybe it’ll get easier.

Having no other family in the US, and no close family even in England, it means the Christmas table will be set only for two. My husband and I! First time in 38 years we’ve been alone together for Christmas. I’ll let you know how that works out!

In the meantime, have a wonderful Christmas everyone, from my quiet home in Colorado, to your home wherever it may be!

Panettone and Star Wars – a Perfect Christmas

And finally it’s almost Christmas. I’m not at work and I’m relaxed. Last shopping done, all is good. Tomorrow a bit of final baking is on the cards – Panettone. Always a good thing to eat for Christmas breakfast. Washed down with a good cup of Cappuccino.

Panettone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No rush, no time lines, no problem!

And tonight – STAR WARS………. Can’t believe I’ve been married so long. As a newly wed I saw the first episode in Salisbury, Wiltshire. Amazing movie. Now, 38 years later (I’m so freaking old), I’ll watch the latest episode in Parker, Colorado. Yes we moved to America, but I’m still married to the same man! He’s just as exited about seeing Star Wars tonight, as he was back in 1977. I hope it doesn’t disappoint.

Merry Christmas everyone, enjoy your family and be good to yourself.

Canterbury Cathedral at Christmas

Colorado is my home. I love the laid back atmosphere, the rugged countryside and the people. However at this time of year I long for the Christmas’s I used to enjoy in England. The magnificence, majesty, history and atmosphere. Feeling nostalgic as I share this photo.

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The Tree for 2015 – Merry Christmas!

I’ve lived in my lovely home for almost 20 years and love the huge old Pine and Aspens that surround it. Every year I add a new tree. This is the 2015 addition. I can’t wait to see it grow. DSC04078

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