Wednesday, 18 December 2013
A streamside walk on Sunday afternoon, just before sunset. I was in a strange mood, unable to drag myself out of a bit of a gloom. So I took a walk on my own - an almost unheard of thing. The streams were far more full than usual because of the rain, and the water was moving quickly - at a fast walking pace, rather than a slow meander.
I walked down to the small community orchard which is just down the road from us.
You can just make out the list of varieties planted, although the light was low by this time.
The trees are mostly bare now, although one of them at the end did still have apples on it. No doubt hungry birds will eat them soon.
The sun set just after 4 o'clock. I love the winter sunsets and the early darkness. Somehow I can feel the vital spark of life more keenly. Human existence is closer to the edge. Solitary walks are perfect for musing on such things.
The next day there was mist and sun. The colours in this photo taken from our top room are some of my favourites. Another reason to love this time of year. The bleached greys and blues and the jagged black silhouettes.
Above the river there was an odd tunnel of mist in places. I stood for a while watching the birds going about their business. With only eight hours of daylight they are hungry by morning, and there are always plenty flying past, looking for food.
Today the house smelt like Christmas. I brought the tree in and made some mincemeat, with apricots, cranberries and Cointreau.
After school the boys decorated the tree. The usual mix of red, green and gold baubles, gold stars, angels and ornaments that we've been given over the years.
And my favourite little things that the children made at pre-school. Misshapen lumps of clay, saturated with glitter and stuck with plastic holly. Cardboard shapes covered in sequins and glue and trimmed with pipe cleaners. Baubles made from old CDs with sweet photos of little boys on them. Nothing finer.
I'll try a few more photos tomorrow in the daylight. For now, this is all I have.
Pretty much identical to what I can see without my contact lenses in.
Tomorrow is the children's school carol service. The church is always candlelit and it's such a beautiful service. It's my favourite thing in the run-up to Christmas. And to add to the excitement, apparently all of the boys have A Line this year. In fact the littlest boy has three. He came home today clutching a piece of paper with his lines on it. He's Shepherd 1, which is a promotion from last week when he was one of many sheep in the nativity play. I muttered something about hoping he didn't need a costume. He gave this some consideration and then said actually he thought he would take one, as it was possible his teacher had said something about it. I'm really hoping she didn't.
There's been lots of carol singing. I think they do it at school every other day, so they come home singing them. I had a "discussion" with the littlest boy about the correct words to "Hark the Herald". I said it was "Joyful all ye nations rise". He felt certain it was "Joyful all ye nations rife". His teacher said so. I said it actually wasn't, it was "rise". He got a bit shouty and said that SHE SAID IT WAS RIFE. I said, "Just for the record, I'm older than she is and I trump her every time when it comes to knowing stuff" (I know, I know, but honestly, he thinks she's the oracle), "and anyway, what does rife even mean???" He said, "It's you know, rife guns". Yes. That makes perfect sense. I'm definitely going to be singing that tomorrow.
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Beautiful photos especially love the grey monochrome misty ones. Re the costume a dressing gown and a teacloth on his head should do the job although thinking about it modern day teacloths aren't always checked ones are they?! Don't you just love the way Miss always knows best and that sometimes she even says what you have been saying all along and not been believed but now that Miss says it it must suddenly be true! Do hope your glums were helped by the walk and that you are feeling better now?ReplyDelete
Fine now, thank you so much. You're right about the tea towels, a floral one would never do!Delete
Oh, dear. I hope, for your sake, that there is no costume needed. But you can pull together a simple one pretty quickly, I think. I'm glad you got out for a walk. I really need one. I'm tired and I just never get any time alone. I'm always with my children, either one or both, and it's becoming a bit exhausting. I'm looking forward to them both being in school more next year. Your photos are really beautiful, I love the way the mists look around and through the trees.ReplyDelete
It was okay, no costume was required, thankfully. Sorry you're so tired, it's hard when you have pre-school children and there's very little break. I hope you can find time for a little walk soon or maybe even a nap!Delete
Hope your walk has lifted your spirits. I loved your closing paragraph it made me laugh out loud, enjoy your singing whatever words you use. Does Miss have a lisp?ReplyDelete
I don't think she has, the littlest boy hears things in his own way!Delete
I know what you mean about being contact lensless I wear them too. I used to be the Oracle too but now I'm just an ordinary mortal.ReplyDelete
Surely not Sue, once the Oracle, always the Oracle I'm sure.Delete
Any mincemeat available to buy on line? Haven't made any for years. Must have another go! Looks fantastic.ReplyDelete
Thank you, it was quite nice, even other half like it!Delete
Ha ha, hope you're standing next to Miss when you sing it. It doesn't get any easier when they're in high school, I still get last minute requests for costumes, though a tea towel and elasticated snake belt just doesn't cut it by this age. It looks like you have some lovely walks near where you live, I hope it lifted your mood.ReplyDelete
The latest costume request is for an evacuee boy. At least I have had plenty of notice this time. I shall try not to leave it until the last minute...Delete
oh! your photos and words speak to me. It is so lovely, those evening walks by one's self. Quiet and longing and photos sound perfect.ReplyDelete
I hope these next few days treat you well and that there is less gloom and more bright sweet light in the darkness. xo
Thank you for your sweet words Rebecca. The lights are twinkling a little more now.Delete
A lovely post and terrific photos. I sympathise and guess that many people feel like that at this time of year, especially gardeners.ReplyDelete
Your last paragraph had me laughing, and I'm with the littlest boy on this one. Flighty xx
It would liven the carols up if there were more references to rife guns I think!Delete
Glorious photos of the mist over the river. Dead impressed with mincemeat too and its delicious flavours. I wish I'd made the effort now.ReplyDelete
It's not too late!Delete
Lovely photos - you have a great view from your window. I always used to feel that Christmas really started with the school carol service, and miss that now the children have moved on to secondary school. Must admit though, I don't miss making the costumes for the Christmas show!ReplyDelete
I know I'll miss the carol service when mine don't do it any more. I will no doubt be sobbing at the last one I go to. In the meantime I refuse to think about it.Delete
I love taking walks by myself. It's the perfect time to think and just enjoy your surroundings. I love your pictures, as always. They capture the mood so perfectly. I'm sure your home is full of wonderful Christmas smells and the songs of carols! Sounds so wonderful:)ReplyDelete
Thank you for your kind words Kari. The carols aren't quite a blissful as you might imagine - quite a lot of shouting and different tunes!Delete
Beautiful photos CJ. I especially love the ones with the mist. I hope your walk did the trick!!ReplyDelete
Thank you Julie, it did indeed to the trick.Delete
I find walking is absolutely the best way to clear my head and keep me grounded. Although I inevitably forget to take my camera...........ReplyDelete
hope it all went well with the costumes and carols x
A walk amongst a bit of nature is such a miraculous cure I think. It soothes the brainwaves somehow.Delete
A lovely post with some beautiful photos. I love winter sunsets - and sunset walks, with the gradual loss of light and the sense that everything in nature is preparing for darkness.ReplyDelete
Hope the carol service went well. Happy Christmas!
Thanks Wendy, beautifully expressed, that is exactly how it feels to me as well. A happy Christmas to you too.Delete
Glorious misty shots :)ReplyDelete
I find walking good therapy, and walking by moving water, be that stream, river or the sea, the very best therapy of all.
You're right, water is incredibly soothing.Delete
I especially loved the grey pictures. Hope the walk helped you feel better. I would also have very blurred vision without the contact lens! Hope the children had a lovely last week at school.ReplyDelete
Thank goodness for opticians! They did have a good week thanks, although quite exhausting as well.Delete
I don't often get a chance to wal by myself and I really enjoy it when I do. I find it helps when I'm feeling low. I always chuckle to myself when the children get a word or a line from a song 'wrong'
It does indeed often help to go for a walk, especially by the sea I think. I love the mis-heard words; quite often I write them down so that I can look back at them and smile.Delete