Monday, 30 November 2015

Me on Monday

It's been a let's see how big the new tree really is, 
a let's see if the lights still work,
and a free Mulled Wine, don't mind if I do 
kind of Monday.
 And it's looking good for the rest of the week.
Me on Monday is Sian's idea and you can see more here.

Sunday, 29 November 2015


After the excitement of yesterday afternoon (and more than a little drama),
we had a much quieter day today.
Dog walking, cafe visiting,
pizza dough making, homework finishing
and Christmas wreath hanging.
Simple, easy, good.

Saturday, 28 November 2015

The Christmas Party that Wasn't

You can't call it a Christmas party if you hold it in November, can you?
The kids turned up in their Christmas jumpers.
The plates and napkins were Christmas themed.
I suppose that makes it a Christmas party, doesn't it.
I had thought to take photos throughout the afternoon.
Didn't happen.
But I did get the required group shot.
Christmas party or not, it was a great afternoon.  

Friday, 27 November 2015

Christmas Baubles, Pizza & Laughter

The friend-who's-like-my-brother and I met up in town late yesterday afternoon
Where there was fun to had with a camera and a bauble.
 Somerset House was home to the Navy Board and is still home to the Nelson Stairs.
They are perhaps the most beautiful piece of craftsmanship that I have ever seen.
The FWLMB is a 24 year Navy man and he was in awe at the thought of walking in the 
footsteps of Admiral Lord Nelson.
As ex-RAF, I was thinking, "whatever" ... just joking. 
 Adding to the enjoyment of our evening was the arrival of my cousin. 
 She'd come to town for work and we were happy to have her join us
and then come with us to spend the night.{We were rather full in suburbia last night.}
We checked out the Oxford Street Christmas lights before
heading for pizza and beer.

We laughed and talked and laughed some more.
We should do it much more often.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Who Am I Kidding?

All month long I've been telling myself that it's ages to Christmas.
The delivery of the Christmas tree this morning finally put paid to that idea
(although I was expecting delivery next week).
There's also the small matter of how many Christmas cards I have written.
And that this evening, I will be checking out the Christmas lights in the West End.
Christmas is almost here, no matter what I think.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Give | A Year of Giving

With our American family and friends celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow,
today seemed the ideal time to reflect on almost a year of giving
In January I wrote about what the word could mean for us.
In April I looked back on the first quarter of the year.
What can I conclude from almost a year of giving?
That I was already giving a lot.
That I added more to my plate.
That sometimes things got lost along the way;
like making personal phone calls regularly
and making more time to be still.
With December around the corner, I know that I have lived our word this year.
And can begin the process of listening for a new word in 2016.

One Little Word is Ali Edwards' idea and you can see more here.  

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Easy Christmas Decor #2

We have plans to see Santa at some point over the next few weeks.
I suspect that we may be coming to an end of those magical visits,
and with that in mind, I gathered up all the Santa visit photos
and turned them into a Christmas decoration.
I ordered a 4x4 picture frame from that well known online giant,
and I used the backing sheet that came with it as the size template.
 I printed the photos at 6x4 and then trimmed to fit. 
 The actual size worked at 10.2x10.2 cms.
 The photos were placed fairly randomly and I filled in the blanks
 with Christmas themed paper and embellishments.
I used re-positional glue so that I can add this year's photo
(and next year's, if I'm lucky).
Before putting the montage into the frame, I cleaned its glass.
And that was it; done in around 30 minutes
I copied this idea from Elise and you can see her original post here.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Me on Monday

It was a 
"Care to join me for coffee and a free pudding?"
kind of Monday.
So I did, 
and it helped.

 This post is adapted from
Me on Monday, which is the lovely Sian's idea 
and you can see more here.  

Saturday, 21 November 2015


After waking to falling snow this morning,
and embracing a bitterly cold walk in the park with the dog, 
we settled for working on our hobbies this afternoon.
The pooch curled up in his bed
the boys embarked on aero modelling
and I brought this week's Project Life up to date.
I provided hot tea and Digestive biscuits
and we listened to a download of Battle of Britain at 75 
on the BBC's iRadio Player.
We should spend more afternoons like this. 

Friday, 20 November 2015

10 Things | Christmas

I've been telling myself, in a bah humbug kind of way,
that Christmas is ages away ...
On the way to school this morning, The Boy Child and I worked out
that as of next Monday, there are only
 20 school days left until the Christmas holidays.
I admit to feeling surprised.
Christmas has always been my favourite time of the year,
more so since I became a mother.
Here, just for fun, are 10 Things I love about Christmas.
1) Writing to Santa:  Because of a delay in his fine motor skills, The Boy Child was unable to write legibly until he was in Year 2, and didn't write his own letter to Santa until Christmas 2013.
2) The Magic of Santa: Christmas absolutely becomes more magical when you have young children.  They count the days until Elvis arrives. They perform in the school Nativity.  They want to visit Santa.  They want to wear a Santa hat  What's not to love?
3) Christmas pop music:  All the old favourites, that we don't remember learning, but still know word for word.  This year a new favourite will be Lady Antebellum.  
4) Christmas wrapping:  I used to be all about the cheap and cheerful.  Now, I'm realising that as much thought should go into the outside of a gift, as to the contents inside.  
5) December Daily:  It's hard now to imagine a December without this project.
6) Cranberry Sauce: Another newish tradition.  Nigella's recipe for the win.
7) Christmas Baubles: Another tradition that came into being after the birth of The Boy Child.  We add at least one new bauble to our collection every year. 
8) Christmas jumpers: In a word, yes.
9) Our Christmas Fairy: Can't imagine a Christmas without her on the tree.
10) The Store of Utter Gorgeousness: Simply because this store is actually a little piece of Heaven on earth. 
"Though I've grown old, the bell still rings for me as it does for all who truly believe."

What 10 Things do you love/hate about Christmas?

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Right Now ...

Right now ... things are a little stressful.
They've been better, it has to be said.
But today, however, I met up for lunch with someone
that I haven't seen in a very long time
(apart from a few hours here).
We went to our local pub, which Time Out has just named as 
the best pub in our London borough.
Who knew?
I told her the truth of what living with autism on a daily basis is like.
She told me of her family's difficult and horrendous last few months.
We laughed.
We might have nearly cried.
Right now ... 
 I'm reminded of how important it is to make that call, 
to follow up on that promise of let's-get-together-soon,
to remember that others may also be living through a difficult time,
to not be the one who says, "She's a friend, but I haven't seen her in years." 
Right now ... I'm reminded that friendship is about stepping up
and being present in the here and now. 

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

A Different Approach to Christmas Shopping

I announced on Facebook this morning that I was beginning my Christmas shopping.
I started at the Store of Utter Gorgeousness,
because, well, why not?
And that was pretty much as far as I got. 
 I bought Christmas cards, London themed wrapping paper,
 fun London themed gift tags, gift embellishments 
 baubles and more.
At the back of my mind was the thought that the majority of these items could be re-purposed
and make an appearance in this year's December Daily.  
I eyed up the Christmas planner, which appealed to the scrapbooker in me.
Did I buy it?  No, but I was sorely tempted.
The rest of my shopping consisted of green beans and bread rolls.
Not necessarily a productive morning, Christmas shopping wise,
but I enjoyed myself all the same.
And there are days where joy is scarce in these parts. 

Monday, 16 November 2015

Me on Monday

It's all about lists today.
Earlier this morning, I couldn't get settled to any one task.
So I made a list and began to work through it.
The reason for being unsettled?
I was too busy thinking about Friday's horrific events in Paris.
To busy remembering that we were on a rare night out with friends and that, 
in a parallel universe, it could have so easily have happened in our city.
To people like us.  
Who wonder why there is so much hatred in the world.
Who wonder where it will end.
Who wonder what they can do to make a difference.

Me on Monday is Sian's idea and you can see more here.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

December Daily 2015 | Foundation Pages

It's almost time for my favourite project of the year: December Daily.
I'm using paper from Simple Stories, the Claus & Co. range.
Embellishments are also from that range, along with some from Shimelle
and stuff picked up in the Store of Utter Gorgeousness.
 I'm using a cloth-covered album from Studio Calico in 6x8, 
with an assorted mix of page protectors. 
 I've added a 6x6 memorabilia pocket from Becky Higgins 
at the front of the album.
I punched extra holes so it would fit 
and simply added a 3x4 to the title pocket.  
 There's a calendar where I'll add the Christmassy stuff we do.
 I've laid out days 1-25, but there's plenty of scope to move things
around, should I feel like it. 
 Additional extras include a fun Christmas card picked up in Texas last December.
I plan to add a photo to the inside left hand side of the card and journaling to the right. 
 I decorated both sides of the card's envelope and placed it  
in the album as Day 2. 
 Finally, I added another memorabilia pocket
 towards the end of the album. 
December Daily.
My favourite project of the year.
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