Thank you for your kind comments on my “What Christmas Means to Me” post. I was a bit nervous about posting it, so was happy that it was a welcome perspective for some people.
We have had a fantastic Christmas – especially when I think that for the last three Christmasses, the Dafter was nearly completely bedbound with ME/CFS. What a difference this year! She had asked if we minded her doing some volunteering on Christmas Day, and of course we were delighted. We were up early that morning, and as usual we were spoiled rotten by our friends and family. So many thoughtful and useful gifts! Then I dropped the Dafter off at a church where they do a Christmas dinner for those who would otherwise have none. She knew no-one there, but she kissed me goodbye and went to help.
So Michael and I had a lovely walk before, rather than after, our Christmas dinner. It was a beautiful day:
When we got home we enjoyed two of our presents:
Yes, we have three teapots! The white and blue one we use for Rooibos tea in the evenings; the polka-dot one (in the tea cosy) is for special occasions, and the blue one behind is our everyday teapot.
We picked the Dafter up several hours later. She was glowing! She’d had a great time, mostly keeping children entertained. She was given this beautiful balloon, which has been a lot of fun to watch bob around the ceiling.
Then it was time for our Christmas dinner, cooked as always by Michael. A dear friend gives us fancy Christmas crackers every year:
We had a beautiful meal (vegetarian!), pulled our crackers, put on our crowns and generally were pretty silly:
At the weekend, the Dafter went on an adventure by herself, travelling on the train to see friends overnight. Amazing! Michael and I enjoyed perusing some of the sales in town and seeing the Christmas decorations:
We also took a trip out to the countryside, which I will show you in another post. It was beautifully frosty the days after Christmas:
We were snug inside. I love the handmade card from a young friend of the family:
Monday morning we awoke to the deepest frost I think I’ve ever seen, and fog as well:
Michael and I went through to Edinburgh to have lunch with Our Son. The train was unheated and I was perishing with the cold by the time we got there. But I warmed up. Michael and Our Son both commented that I had my usual pink cheeks back, having apparently been quite white earlier on:
I liked the poetry on signs declaring that Edinburgh is a UNESCO City of Literature. This verse by Scott is a good description of the city, I think, though our visit was such a quick one that I didn’t get any snaps to illustrate it with! (You can see some photos of “massy, close and high” Edinburgh in this post.)
Back home, the garden was still immersed in what I think is “rime” (and not as in the Ancient Mariner):
One of my regular readers, oldblack in Australia, recently asked how the roses cope with the winter weather. I took this photo to show you, oldblack! These blooms will not fully open now, and although the rosebush is still producing buds (one is on the top of the photo), I don’t think there will be any more now. I’ll give the bush a trim in March, while it’s asleep, and it will send out new shoots and buds in early June I think.
There is another “rose” in the garden that is coming into its growing season: the hellebore, or Lenten Rose. It is beginning to bud, and the frost and snow won’t hold it back too much.
The Dafter arrived home tired but very happy from her journey, and is having a friend to stay overnight tonight. And tomorrow is the last day of 2014! We stand at the threshhold of the New Year, an exciting time.
I wish you all a good end of this year and start of the next. Bliadhna Mhath Ur, ‘nuair a thig i! Happy New Year when it comes!