Thursday, 29 October 2015

Thank You

Feeling I'm suspended
'Tween childhood and old age
My heart is near to breaking
As I turn each well worn page,

For there within your  special box
It's very plain to see
That my deep, eternal love for you
Is as great as yours for me.

So many cards and letters
In my childish hand
Saying that I love you
Best parents in the land.

So many cards and  letters
Inviting you to tea
And then as I grew older
To come and stay with me.

Mothers day and fathers day
Birthdays and Christmas too
Saying that you're special
And how much I love you.

Then as the years flew by
And I went so faraway
Letters kept us linked so strong
Each and every day.

With todays' technology
We would have had such fun
'When is good to ring you?'
'I'll be home at one!'

For with emails and messages
We are really spoilt for choice
But nothing ever will replace
The warmth in someone's voice.

Now as I fold your clothes away
The tears are falling fast.
So many precious memories
Come flooding from the past.

Thank you for my childhood
You loved me from the start
And now you're both forever
Together in my heart.

The stories that you told me
And all the songs you sung
The values that you fostered
I pray I will pass on.

Friday, 23 October 2015

Kiss and Make up

Bad relationships are the result of bad communications.
War is the breakdown of politics.
Misunderstandings cause much harm.
We are all fragile and need affection.

Arguments often happen in close relationships. In fact the more fond you are of someone then the more likely it is to happen because you might expect too much or look for signs of affection that don't seem to be there.
Once upon a time there was a young woman who gave her husband a little china ornament for Christmas. It was a man and a woman sitting on a bench with their lips touching. She told him that she wanted them to always be like that.
Whenever they had an argument she would put the figures facing away from each other until they said sorry then kissed and made up.
Over the years they got chipped and broken but they were always carefully mended and glued back together. So here they are still sharing the same bench. Still happy to be together.

Monday, 19 October 2015

Lantern Light

My tea is nearly ready
And the sun has left the sky
It's time to see O'Leary
With his lantern going by,

For every night at tea time
I take my window seat
As with lantern and with ladder
He goes slowly down the street.

These are the first two verses of Robert Louis Stevenson's poem for children that I think of whenever I see a lantern.
There is something so special about a lantern, beckoning us to safety in the dark, drawing us to its' glow, warm and welcoming. Down through the ages bringing ships to safety, the night watchman going through the town, on a table in a pub garden inviting us to sit round it and enjoy the company of friends.
In 'The lion, the witch and the wardrobe' C.S.Lewis uses the lantern to mark the place where the children can get back in the wardrobe and go home again.
Here are the lanterns I saw today, hope you like them.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

At the Hairdresser'

It was Saturday and I felt tired,
I lay back in the chair
Then turned my head
And was surprised
to see you sitting there.

Your cheeks were pink
Your eyes so blue
And full of love for me
And in turn my heart did swell
With all my love for you.

wave your magic wand

What would you do if you had a magic wand? Go on ! Right now! What would you do if you had a magic wand? Wish for world peace? Cure all diseases? Make the sun shine for your barbeque?

The idea of the three wishes appears so much in children's stories. As a child most of us must have thought about what wishes we would make if given the chance.
My first one was always to have good eyesight, and that sort of came true when I got my contact lenses.
My friend Eileen always said she'd wish for another three straight away so she could just keep on wishing.
It seems we spend a lot of time wishing, make a wish as you stir the Christmas pudding, as you blow out the candles on your birthday cake, as you gaze upon the new moon, as you throw a coin in a fountain.
Someone said to be careful what you wish for because it might come true and you'd be stuck with it and I suppose he meant that we don't always know what is best for us.
Of course you have to be careful what you wish for, we don't need anyone to tell us that, so many childhood stories warn us about it.
The king that wished that everything he touched would turn to gold had great difficulty eating. Paddy O'Toole and the green glass bottle got beaten up by little leprechauns.

It has reportedly been proved by people who know about these things that if someone wins the lottery their extra happiness will last just three months and then they will be back to square one.
Anyone who has fallen in love knows that heartache often comes side by side.
Anyone who enjoys good health knows they can never take it for granted.
Anyone from a reasonably happy family knows how easily the balance can be upset, the arrival of a girl friend who is just a bit too possessive, a brother-in-law who wants to whisk his family off to Australia, a father who loses his job.
So there we have money, love, health and family all need constant care and surveillance.
Back to the three wishes then what are you going to wish for?  Whatever it is make sure it's something that will not harm anyone else, something that will make you a better person maybe and then do you know what? You can start making it come true all by yourself.
Four leaf clover, each leaf represents love, health, hope and luck

Make a wish as the sun goes down 

Make a wish when you see the moon, but not looking through glass

Garli and red hot chillie peppers will spice up your life and keep away the bad stuff

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Looking forward to having a laugh, The best medicine

Every day at half past seven in the evening throughout my childhood, there was always a half hour comedy programme on the television. Looking back it remains one of my most sunny happy memories. My mum and I would sit round the television and giggle away to such golden oldies as' Bewitched', Man about the House', Hancock's half hour, Steptoe and Son, Lucille Ball, Sid James and a whole load of shows that were guaranteed to raise a laugh.
My own children laughed away at 'Only Fools and Horses', Fawlty Towers, Men Behaving Badly and son on.
Once I realized that we were all stuck in a seventies time warp of comedy I started to ask the nice woman at Smiths if she could recommend comedy for my youngsters, so we moved on to 'The Inbetweeners', 'Extras', Fresh Meat and so on, there are so many to choose from and for all tastes.
Then of course there was 'Friends' in a class of its' own, we all laughed at every single episode, ten years of laughing, squashed together on the sofa, laughing together, thank you 'Friends'.
Sometimes you can be lucky to have a friend or family member that makes you laugh, just being with them, something about the way they put things can have you in fits of giggles. Small children can often be reduced to helpless bundles of giggles just from a mere quirky look or expression.
Sense of humour is a funny thing isn't it? Different things make different people laugh, but one thing is sure a laugh a day to look forward to goes a long way to lift any clouds of misery or greyness that have accumulated. So go on get some humour in your life, make time to watch a funny video or read a joke book or chat to that person that makes you laugh, then wait for that wonderful, sparkling, bubbly feeling of joy that fizzes and froths inside you, bringing joy to your days.

Joke for the day from the series oldies but goldies

A man driving along a country road sees a man parked at the side of the road looking in the bonnet of his car.

'Excuse me' he asks, would you like a hand?'

'Well  thank you but I'd rather have a tow (toe).'

Monday, 5 October 2015

One Line Words of Wisdom to help you on your way

Anyone who uses Facebook will come across sayings that friends have posted or shared.
These short phrases or proverbs, wise words or aphorisms might make you pause and think about their meaning or might make you think what a waste of time and why do people bother sharing them.
Probably most of us grew up with our parents own favourites ringing in our ears, such as:-
'You've made your bed, now lie in it'
'Pull your socks up'
'The other man's grass is always greener'
'It takes two to tango'
'There are two sides to every story'
'Don't spoil the ship for a ha'penny worth of tar'
'familiarity breeds contempt'
'A fence between keeps friendships green'

These are just a few and I'm sure you can add many to the list.
Oscar Wilde wrote so many aphorisms that there are whole books dedicated to them.
What these phrases tend to do is to reassure, encourage, and communicate whole concepts with just a few words.
The one on Facebook can range from Buddha to Che Guevara to Winnie-the Pooh.
You have to be careful how you interpret them though. Today I read one that said
'Sometimes it 's more harmful to hold on than to let go'.
There was a picture of a hand covered in blood holding on to a rope. It sounded ok to begin with but then I thought what if that rope was saving your life, better to have a wounded hand and hold on a bit longer.  So if you are talking about a bad relationship maybe it's a case of bad communication and if you hold on a bit more you can sort it out.
The other day another ready made phase popped up saying
'Friends are the family you choose',
This sounds quite different from what we used to hear about blood being thicker than water.
So advice and wisdom might seem to be changing but one thing is certain, our search for comfort, reassurance and encouragement is as strong today as it ever was.

My favourite from facebook right now,

Remember everyone you meet today will be fighting a battle that you know nothing about. Be kind, always.


Hearts, teddies and flowers can go a long way to healing wounds

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Auntie Peggy's Birthday cake

Auntie Peggy lived next door to me when I was small. She was efficient, brisk and practical and had a heart of gold. I always felt safe when she was around. Everything she did had an almost military precision and order, even the flowers in her garden stood in straight lines, standing to attention. She wasn't really my aunt, but I didn't realize that until years later and I loved her just like all my real aunts.
Her children were younger than me and I was always asked to help with the games when they had their birthday parties. The birthday cake was made the day before and I always helped her make it. Here is the recipe, soothing and relaxing that will take you back to your childhood every time you make it, and that's where you always go on your birthday isn't it?

Auntie Peggy's Birthday cake

250g butter, softened
250g sugar
250g self raising flour
5 eggs, lightly beaten

Cream the butter and the sugar with a wooden spoon until light and fluffy.
Gradually add the beaten eggs whisking with a fork.
Fold in the sifted flour.
Turn the mixture into two cake tins and bake at 180 for about half an hour. Check that the sponges are cooked by gently inserting a knife and making sure it comes away clean.
Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

When the sponges are quite cold sandwich together with the filling of your choice, whipped sweetened cream and strawberry jam are my favourites. then top with icing made by mixing icing sugar and a little water and a few drops of food colouring, or sift over some icing sugar.
Just add balloons, pop corns and a few party games.
Happy Birthday to all of you who have a birthday in October.

Maybe I put a few too many drops of food colouring in the icing

Simple ingredients to make a special celebration cake