Fancy a cocktail at the Christmas club?

Missing Story Telling Sunday and it’s older sister A Christmas story, Sian suggested we might like to join her for three Sundays before Christmas to read one of her wonderful stories and maybe post one of our own.
Now mine is in no way amazing, in fact it’s not even a story, but one of Sian’s suggestions for starting the grey matter churning was
“At Christmas we…”

Well, at Christmas in our house we make this beautiful cocktail, in fact I have learnt that three other households around here also make Miriam’s Christmas in a glass.

Christmas story 2014

1 measure vodka
1 measure Disaronno
3 measures cranberry juice
2 measures orange juice
mix all together
shake over ice
and, if you like them, serve with maraschino cherries threaded on a small skewer.

Merry Christmas!

Thank you Sian

Story Telling Sunday

This is the last month of Story Telling Sunday Three: Pictures of Precious hosted by she of the brilliant ideas Sian Fair~High in the Sky.

I have missed the last two months of this for reasons still unclear in my mind.
Here’s what’s on my mind today. This, and so many hopes that Sian will host something similar next year. Pretty please?

Friends are the true gift of the season

Picture the Precious December

What stops me finding some thing precious and taking a picture and then telling you about it?
It’s not as though I have exhausted my precious things. I’m sure I have lots of things that are special to me.
I have a prayer book that I wanted to show you that has my father’s handwriting in. I have had it since I was twelve years old.
I saw the tea set that belonged to my grandmother in the dresser in the week. It is not particularly old or beautiful but there is a little story attached to it that I like to remember but have decided I can’t tell you.
I spent weeks looking for Ben’s christening gown and was so hung up on telling you about it that I missed the dates for Sian’s meme. I found it of course. When I put my summer clothes away. For some reason it was in with my winter sweaters!
I wanted to show you the lovely necklace and bracelet that Paul & Ben gave me for my birthday earlier this year but I just can’t seem to take a nice enough picture of it.
But I really want to join in with this, if only to support Sian’s wonderful idea.
And then I thought, do you know what? Something very precious to me right now in my life are my friends.
My father in law passed away this week and today is the 8th anniversary of my beautiful friends passing.
Today I have been finishing up the Christmas gift for my lunch group. We are having our Christmas lunch on Wednesday this week. We have all been given a jam jar to fill with whatever we want to put in it. They will then be on the table as our Secret Santa.
My festive swap is still on going and bringing joy to me and so many blog friends.

So friends and life and death are on my mind today. I am not sad or unhappy, it’s just life but how can I offer this to Story telling Sunday/Pictures of Precious.
Then I came across this lovely tag. I’ll take a picture of it and post it today.
This is exactly how I feel.

Friends tag

So for the last Story Telling Sunday instead of a ‘story’ I am saying thanks for your wonderful friendship…here’s to next year.


The link to the Festive Show & Tell swap is here There are some beautiful decorations linked with more to come…

Story Telling Sunday

Sian’s wonderful monthly meme now in it’s third year. Picture the Precious is the theme for this year and this month Sian suggested maybe something that reminds us of someone.
I have a small 4×6 wool mat that has lived on and around my desk for many years. It was given to me by a boy called Matthew, Oh! so many years ago.

Matthew was one of the children I minded before and after school.
He was eight years old.
I can’t for the life of me remember his surname. Perhaps by the time it comes to press ‘publish’ it will come back to me.


Matthew was born with Perthes’ disease and was in a Spica cast when he came to me. His plastered legs were joined by a cross piece just below his knees. His feet were free, I remember putting his shoes on and off.
We used to push him up and down to school in his wheelchair. He was met at school by a member of staff (oh! my goodness it was Mrs Blackwell! How on earth did I remember that?) And spent the day being moved about between classes but when he came back to me after school things took a different turn.
Matthew was like a little monkey; there was nothing he couldn’t do with the other children.
He was a slight boy, bounding with energy and life. He could flick his lower body to wherever he wanted it to be.
He used to run! Just like a toy soldier. Remember the soldiers in toy story? Their feet were on plates and they ran along in a kind of lopsided fashion. That’s how Matthew did it.
He could climb up a plank, side ways.
He could go down the slide. He threw his plaster cast legs over the handles at the top of the slide. And fly down to the bottom on his bum, with his legs in the air.
He was happy, a perfectly normal little boy except for these legs in blue plaster.

Matthew was supposed to rest. An eight-year-old boy and resting just don’t go together do they? He loved coming to our home where there were lots of other children to have fun with.

I have clear memories of him on the tyre swing that hung from the tree in the garden; somehow he had threaded his plaster legs through the tyre and was playing along with the rest of them. He joined in with them all the time, it seemed that there was nothing he couldn’t do.
There was something Matthew could do that none of the other children could do. It made them all squeal and brought me out to the garden from wherever I was.

Matthew could swing upside down from the branch of a tree by hooking the crosspiece of his plaster casts over a branch… I nearly died the first time I saw him do it.
“Matthew, get down! Your mother will kill me!” was a frequent cry of mine in those days…

He brought this little (4”x6”) rug back from a visit to his father in Saudi.
I would love to see him now.

It is raining here (again), a perfect afternoon for reading all the wonderful stories that are over at Sian’s blog today.

Pictures of Precious

It is the first Sunday in July and time for Sian’s wonderful monthly meme. If you have any idea where June went, please let me know.

Here is my page for July.

PtP July box

I got this scruffy box down from the top shelf in my workroom. I brushed off the dust, made myself and the dog sneeze and sat with it on my knee for such a long time this afternoon.
I haven’t seen the contents for so long. I kind of knew what was in there though.
I wondered if there was some thing that I might be able to write a story about for Sian’s Story Telling Sunday.
Inside the box, I found:
• Lots of small treasures from the children that I used to mind many years ago. Their little faces came into my mind and made me smile
• A few bits that I can’t throw out, but I’ve run out of shelf space
• Some post cards from places we have been
• Some cards that have made me smile
• A religious figure that I don’t want but can’t throw away. It was mums and I remember it sitting on her sideboard forever
• Some school things, programmes, a spelling list
• Letters, lots of letters

The ‘thing’ that I found, was handwriting.
On a card or a letter or a picture
Handwriting feels so precious to me. When I read some of the writing I could hear that persons voice and yet I can’t hear it if I just think about them.
There are letters and cards and pictures from my aunt, from Paul, from Ben, from my friend.
I’ve felt sadness and happiness looking through the things in the box.
…So many memories.
I put everything back, except the dust, that will return soon enough and put the box back on the top shelf in my workroom and then opened word and a new document…

I am looking forward to reading everyones stories later today, after the tennis! It’s the mens Wimbledon final… Go Andy! what does that mean? I fear I am no longer ‘down with the kids” What does that mean?

My M-i-L thinks they should shorten the match today because it is far too hot for ‘those boys’ How do you think that would go down?

Keep cool if you’re hot, and warm if your cold. Have a lovely Sunday.

Thank you Sian

2 for 1

2 for 1?

WordPress has been playing up. It wouldn’t let me upload photo’s yesterday or this morning

I changed my mind about the story I had ready to publish for Story Telling Sunday

The prompt is up for 52 photo’s project

A strange start to the day

I think I will go out and photograph our new Town Hall for Rinda


52 Photos Project

P52 7 Crimson


She clambers and climbs, twists and turns her way up and around the garden arch every year without fail.
I planted her for her colours and her perfume and because she takes me back to childhood memories of being with my grandfather.

He loved her too; he loved her perfume.

Honeysuckle was one of the first flowers and scents that I learned. This one is not the one that grows in the hedgerows that we would have seen. It is the perfume that takes me right back…

On our weekly journey to my aunts for Sunday lunch, at some point in the journey Grampy would wind the windows of the car down and say “ Can you smell that”

“What Grampy?” Piped up a little voice from the back seat of the Ford Pop.

“The scent of summer” he would reply.


Thank you Sian and Bella