#12Christmas2020things

The twelve things of this years Christmas are in picture form above.

Number 1

My favourite ornament, it has not changed I just stupidly adore my thoroughly modern Angel. An angel in a red coat with a swanky bag. She watches down from above my books, keeps an eye on me. When Christmas is about Angel takes up a different spot. Overlooking the whole affair, smart with tidy dark brown hair. Her coat a ruby shade of red, like santa’s, it has been said her wings and heart shaped bag glisten in the Christmas lights. She is my favorite ornament by far. If Christmas was still to be Christmas she simply must be there.

Number 2.

Charlie. Is a poem I wrote and love it so much.It encapsulates the spirit of kindness of which this weird year I have seen quite a lot. So for your delectation, get the tissues and be prepared to weep.

Charlie wasn’t keen on Christmas, because of the paper, the lights and all the waste, He didn’t think it good to eat so much, when others went hungry, It soured the taste.

Charlie loved wearing Granddad’s flight jacket, the best ever Christmas gift, Grandma said he wore it each day, walking back from his overnight shift.

The coat was cumbersome and heavy, if zipped it came way past his throat. His arms needed to be longer, the leather smelt of tobacco, the wool a dirty old Goat.

But, Charlie could fit mucky Ethel, underneath it when the rain soaked all her card. Or the snow made her fingers go blue … as she sat in that old butchers yard.

He could fit a curled up ham sandwich and an apple from Grandma’s dish, Deep inside the wool lined pocket. So Charlie, he made a new Christmas wish.

He wished that all people had bedrooms, a place to rest their head. That mucky Ethel could have a bath and a coat to hold over her own head.

But Santa, he did not come calling, to the people who lived on the street. Instead he hoped they would have their own Charlie, who would give the shoes from their feet.

Number 3.

My favourite Christmas coat, I feel like Christmas is here when I wear it. I secretly long to be the Angel in number 1.

Number 4.

Christmas Horror stories, These Books, ‘Horror Anthologies’ are the perfect introduction to short snappy stories to be told around the fire. The fact that they each carry one of my own tales inside, makes them even more special. I hope to scare family over zoom this year, but of course, you could buy them as gifts if you wish. A new book is on pre order coming soon Wings and Fire.

Number 5.

Snow! Writing Merry Christmas in snow, building a snow man and sharing it even if it is only on Zoom; would be magical. It will be in the lap of Mother nature but I have asked Santa and I have been good.

Number 6.

CRACKERS! Yes I know but I do not mean me, or the ones with Cheese. I mean who could have a Christmas weird or not without a cracker to pull, a joke to read and a tacky prize. No they are in my Christmas 2020 regardless of weird.

Number 7.

A TREE. no matter how big how bright or how simple, a decorated tree is simply a must. As is a glass of cream brandy liqueur, Michael Bubl’e on the speakers and plenty of giggles. It is just what I want to do and so should you.

Number 8.

The grandchildren, We can not have them all so we will have none. But Christmas without there faces would be the unhappiest place for me. The one above is Ivy. we have two expected in spring and the chronological list is this.

Merlot 15, Flynn 14, Ivy 5, Mabel 4, Matilda 4. Penelope 3, George 18months. How could we have Christmas without all of these. So we will eat breakfast together and I will tell stories and jokes and we will do this while they open our gifts under their own trees.

Number9.

Santa and this one is special, another will never do. Santa has stuck by me and taken me through the bad times and delivered the goods. He will be with me at Covid-19s Christmas. We on a normal year have a tradition. We find a day where we can get as many family together and have our ‘Best’ Christmas celebration, 2018 we managed 19 guests. We have, food and drink, crackers and silly hats, music and laughter. Our tradition of the table game, secret santa. Each household brings, a male gift and a female gift, two children friendly ones each for under £7 each. each plainly wrapped with M,F,C on the package. After dinner the pile (to which I have added extras), is put in the middle; with my santa for luck (santa guides the dice). The die is rubbed and kissed the air thick with anticipation. Each of us take turns to throw, you need a double 6 to collect a gift. This continues until the pile has gone. At this point you can donate, or stick. Players usually donate (if a child has not won a parcel) then we begin again. This time, any double thrown, of any number can now steal. The packages have treats, silly things, and booby prizes inside. We laugh until we all have wet faces and gasp for breath. Not covid appropriate, or safe for 2020, so this year it will be sorely missed.

Number 10.

A phone, TO call up Mother, and people who do not have mobiles or wifi. yes they exist and I will not leave them out.

Number 11.

My bird feeding regime begins in earnest usually with a poem about feeding the birds, With no children to share in the feeding this year I will video myself singing Mary Poppins famous song (I can not sing) Feed the birds and send one to each family household so they can see the birds get fed and Grandma Duck is still bonkers enough said.

Number 12.

My rock/pebble painting, represents a song and the year where saying I love you has been there to replace hugs and kisses that we all are still missing.

Thank you YouTube

Which is your favourite of my #12Christmas2020Things did you like best and what will your celebration miss. answers in the comments, I am dying to know.

 

“How many times must I tell you?” my Mother shouted. “How many times must I tell you, question mark” Is what my young self-heard. Like all good girls, I answered. A question should be answered, or you might be remembered as rude. I twisted my fingers like a church and steeple; stood on tippy toes and wore my most thoughtful look. “Maybe twice Mummy, I might not quite hear you with once … If I was doing something else … like reading.”  Shuffling backwards I sucked in my breath. “I might not hear … the first time.” I continued, I was careful with my answer, making sure to not say too many words or smile too much while I spoke. Unbeknown to me, that was not the right answer. I knew this because Mummy’s lip curled and her face twisted, into that not nice face, the one that made my knickers wet, which she liked even less than my answer; Five I was then.


My school uniform was still being worn when Mum came in looking for me; frowning. My buttons all skew-whiff, socks wrinkled into my shoes and my book firmly clasped between ink-stained fingers; behind my back. I stood straight and looked into her eyes while she spoke, knowing I should have changed before finishing that page, then she would not be as cross. Why hadn’t I? Simple, my book called me. I looked down at my shoe while I rubbed it against my calf; blackening my sock. Both hands were behind my back; clasping Black beauty. This left me unprotected, unprotected against falling, losing my balance. But I was not showing my book, not for anything. “How dare you answer me back, you defiant girl” I felt Mummy’s spittle land on my face as she snarled and poked me with her finger. “I was, only trying to answer Mummy” I whispered. “Just you say that once more girl!” That statement was another trap I fell into when I was small. Even though I was being asked to repeat something, I should never, ever do it. If I did, sore legs, no tea and bed would follow. That’s when my books became best friends. Under the blankets with my penlight torch between my teeth; I treasured that torch. I could check for bogeymen or the devil  … she said he would get my tongue if I lied, so I had to be vigilant.

I was one of a family of five, at least until my youngest sister came along when I was six. Six years and four months old, that was when she appeared; all soft and smiley, smelling of milk and baby powder. She came with a plethora of things I had never seen before. Mum and Dad must have done a deal on a job lot; my eldest sister said. There came a van with a carry-cot a bath with a stand, a chair that bounced, bags of rompers, dresses, vests and cardigans. There were lidded buckets, nappies, both muslin and towelling. Then there were the toys. My toys, I had outgrown them … so Mummy said. Off they went,  with new ones in her box. How she came to be, or how that happened, I am sure my sisters wondered as much as me.  But it did, and there she was, making the family of parents with four girls. She was no bother, she would be asleep when we left for school and asleep or about to sleep when we came home; so I only recall her being around at the weekends and holidays. With two older sisters to help, I didn’t get much of a look in; not old enough to be trusted and not experienced at life. My help was to sit next to her chair and read her stories, and of course to call out if there were any smells.

Learning the meaning of things is easier on a page, you can see the question marks and commas. ” When is a question, not to be answered?” By ten years old I knew better, but at five I hadn’t realised. You had to read the face, and interpret the tone that words were delivered in; if you were to understand. At ten, I knew when not to answer … though answering back was still a confusing one. As is, ‘just you come here.’ You do have to go as soon as it is said; not too quick, or too slow. I do not remember being taught to read faces or voices. It was something it seems you just had to know. It felt like I had to … just know, quite a lot Whilst growing up.

By fifteen I had learned to negotiate, compromise and keep my head down and nose clean. I had been working since I was fourteen, after school and at weekends. Sweeping and tea making in the hair salon, fetching coats and always smiling; part of the job. I lived in a lodging house and had an apprenticeship in hair and beauty, and for the most part, I coped nicely. Being fifteen was a time of hard work and independent living. I paid minimal rent; part of which was to cook the odd lunch for the landlady’s Father. Rent was paid for with three jobs. The hairdressers, the night cafe behind the Mace shop, and working every Sunday in a posh coffee shop in a neighbouring town. The reading of expressions came in handy at the salon, especially for nodding and smiling in the right places. Having my hair and nails done at work was a perk of the job and gave me an air of sophistication, or so I thought. Mixing with the elite as well as knowing good manners. I was brought up with, and my compulsion to read anything I could get my hands on made for a well-rounded, smart, nicely spoken, hard-working young woman. During this time my evenings were filled with writing, poetry mostly, all tucked between the pages of my favourite books. There I was secretly hoping Louisa M Alcott would permeate my work; improve it, as if by magic. But, as all fifteen-year-olds were back then, I was very naive.

My top five books were:
Alice in Wonderland
Black beauty
Mary Poppins
Little Women.
These taught me that words were wonderful … as long as they are kept in order. Books were my friends and writing could catch your fears on paper. Much better than in your chest.

So here we are with the power of five. Five senses, five elements, five digits on hands and feet. Five paragraphs .What more could anyone want?

I am unable to add this to the blog competition that it was written for, as alas, I got carried away. 375 was the count to stay below to qualify. This piece, is three times longer so I place it here to share with those who might enjoy a read. Iwould like to know if you have found it impossible on occasion. To tame a flash fiction to sit between the numbers required. Please comment I love to talk. .. 🎶😲🎵

Five Paragraphs on the shaping of me.

Florence wears her poppy with pride.
Bloody Mary at the ready ,
fag a dangle from painted lips,
burgeoning breasts child bearing hips.
All a wobble; she waits for the last post.
Lips a tremble; as she drinks a silent toast.

Her eyes and demeanour belie her pain the most.
An orphan of war; his body unfound.
Buried deep beneath foreign ground.
For peace he fought and lost his life,
then suicide tore away his grieving wife.

Alone, eyes all a puddle, she stands. Two minutes never brings them back. Silently clasping her shaking hands.

While, we all remember them.

Do you think my attempt is too fickle for such a poignant rememberance? Leave me a comment its good to talk.

Thanks to the artist of Florence who holds full copyright, giffy for use of tumbling animation. Both poem and poppies are my own.

While We All Remember Them.

Look what’s Coming on July the Twenty Fourth !

This is me being both excited and invincible.

I guest post on The recipe hunter press    Here  if you would like to peruse her fabulous foody blog in advance. Or if like me you would like to contribte I am sure she would love to hear from you all. 

 I want to thank Esme for inviting me, it will be my first guest post ever…  EVER! sorry just felt the need there to be excited in advance. 

I just love this world of blogs and blogishiousness. 

And it is my birthday what a better present could I have?

Happy happy birthday to me on July the twenty Fourth. 

My Answer to a post.

My answer to a beautiful poem left on a passing blog JAMILA MURTAZA she asks what i would tell my six year old self.  read it here

After reading her poem I leave this for her. I hope you like it.

 pigeon-flying-illustration-art-animated-gif

 

I wipe the wet from my face

 and wish it wasn’t so.
But as a teen there are still
horrors you don’t know.

Things that make myself gasp
That slip through my aging grasp
hate and fear don’t belong
To a girl so very young.

I have known so very long
that love resides inside a song
And despite the pain and dying air
this world is full of loving care.

😇 Have a wonderful week.

Do me a favour stop by her place tell her I sent you, follow and comment, fill up the space. Her talent is to be encouraged by all of us here, give her a clap give her a cheer.

leave me a comment *whispers* it feels like I’m collecting a wage. 😆 

Happiness Tag.

Being nominated for a happiness tag is charming, I thank
https://beeorganizedwithpamela.com/
Pamela said coming to my blog always made her happy.
To Have the happieness tag you must list
5. Things that make you happy.
5. Songs that make you happy.
5. Bloggers that make you happy.
Let them know you nominate them and you are done.
image

No1. My Husband makes me happy
No2. My immediate family make me happy
No3. My writing makes me happy
No.4 My life makes me happy
No5. I! make me happy.
In truth I am the happiest I have ever been, I love life, I make everyone smile, (except for those who don’t know me) maybe I am funny, who knows or cares. I am just me, HAPPY!

No1. The Cure this reminds me especially on Fridays.

No.2. T. Rex I love to Booggie and this scene in Billy Elliot together have me singing (very badly) and dancing (like a sugar Plum fairy ) at the first note.

No.3. Because my Dad loved this and it’s my second Fathers day (in England)without him on the 19th June. I will be happy remembering how happy it made him.

No4. I just love this.

No.5. Cold play always make me happy and I particulary like yellow.

Thankyou.
I nominate for the happieness tag
No.1 Lucy. She is funny and upbeat and makes me laugh.press here to read her
blog.
No.2. Chris the story reading ape has made me happy by helping me with ping backs and all things bloggy, Chris’s blog posts often make me laugh.
Press here to join Chris and his blog.
No.3. Steph Richmond , she has a wicked sence of fun and her book is super too “the community ” https://scrichmondblog.wordpress.com/blog/
No.4 Erica kind because she just is. Press now to visit.
No.5 Coleen of silver threading press here to go and feel happy

Thank you every one please let me know if you left here happy 😀 😄 🙂 😉 😇