My final Pause In Advent

I want to apologise – my plan to have a “character” post each week has gone down the pan, as they say… I can’t find my book wherein I wrote several of my characters. I have some on my computer, but most were written by hand and I can’t find them. We’re going away on Friday, and I really don’t think I’ve got time to write another. However, I do have an Epiphany character – one that sends shivers down my spine when I read it, even though I  wrote it and I know the ending! I hope you might join me for a “Pause In Epiphany” round about 6th January.

Meanwhile, today I put up my decorations. Usually I do it on the second Sunday in Advent; I don’t know why I am a week behind. Maybe it’s because we’re going away I’ve not really been able to get into the “groove” of preparations, but even so, yesterday I did some baking (I’m delivering some mince pies to a friend today) and today I decorated. The presents are wrapped, and sitting on the dining room table, the cards are written and waiting till we arrive in the UK for a catch-the-last-posting-date dash to the Post Office on Saturday morning! I have to pop to Cervieres, a local village , today to buy a Santon for my friends. They have one King, I need to buy another. Then next year, they’ll get the last!

I love decorating the house. I particularly enjoy decorating the tree, as I hang decorations from our first tree when we were married, and the ones I’ve added each year. Each year I buy one decoration, either for the tree or for the house. This years is a garland of Norwegian style snowflakes which have got put up in my study, and I don’t think they’ll be moving! But for the last two years, with the Very Bad Kittens, we’ve not risked a tree. Pumpkin and Pomme used to regularly climb the tree; I think George and Milly would wreck it…but some of the decorations I’ve not put up this year are:

the blue and white china star I bought in Amsterdam in 2000

My "Peace" and "Love" star and moon.

The flying reindeer, bought at our first Lyon Festival of Light

The lop sided, one winged bird I bought for Mr D one Christmas

The olive wood carving that mum bought me from her trip to the Holy Land

The angel with pan scourer hair made for me as a Christmas gift when I was still teaching

The slightly manic looking cat, sent from Canada


And here are some of the decorations I did put up – mostly out of the ways of cat paws (although we’re not sure about the bells under the mirror!)

Not a very good shot of the Mexican creche

My little tiny Mexican creche has the addition of various animals coming to worship…a very mixed bunch of sizes – you can see the tiny lamb, the bull, the cats which tower over Mary and Joseph, and in the background the scary, earless, size-of-a-house donkey. There is an angel who really does tower over everything, but I think that’s OK. After all, I think angels are magnificent, huge creatures, so my shell angel fits.

Here is a view of the whole creche set-up

Candles and Christmas pot pourri. When I open my crate of decorations the cinnamon/cranberry smell of this wafts out. It's beautiful!

Mum gave me this decoration a few years ago. I love the way it stands out against the black of our mantelpiece

So, there we are. My decorations are done! Outside the house I have shiny stars on twisty wire, which I thread through our railings. Tre are strands of different colours – pink, gold, red, ice-blue and silver, but sadly, every year a few more stars drop off -some strands are looking quite bare. And unfortunately, the silver ones have a slightly bleak look of barbed wire about them! I sometimes have a wreath too, but that has disappeared into the chaos that is our cellar.

I think for my word of the week, I offer you the word that is on my star: “Peace”. Admidst all the last minute hustle and bustle may we all find time to pause and experience the peace that Our Lord can offer even the most troubled heart. And I ask your prayers for my friend Danièle, who is facing her first Christmas without her beloved Paul who died last January. May she truly experience God’s presence and peace in her heart.

My music for this week is the music I was listening to yesterday as I made my mince pies: perhaps a little early, as we are still in Advent, but who can resist the arrangements of the carols in Hely Hutcheson’s Carol Symphony The photos of the Lake District are beautiful too.

I’m leaving for the UK on Friday and won’t be near a PC until we return. So I won’t be pausing next week – in fact I will be plunged into the glory of clothes shopping, as a friend is taking me round the shops to “Gok Wan” me with my birthday money! No pausing there, I fear!! Our route goes: St Just, Calais, Dover, Canterbury, Milton Keynes, Liverpool, Scunthorpe and back to Dover. Then back home for New Year with friends. Judging by the long range forecast, we are happy that we went with the slightly more expensive choice of the tunnel.

I wish everyone who has been sharing in a Pause In Advent a very happy Christmas and a peaceful 2012. May God bless you richly


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4 Responses to “My final Pause In Advent”

  1. Floss Says:

    I’m looking forward to your Pause in Epiphany! I also really enjoyed looking round your house (very nice!) and your Christmas decorations. Like you, we’re putting up relatively little as we’ll be off to the UK soon. I think I’ll manage to do the last Pause in Advent, and schedule my last Childlike Christmas post, but other than that, not a lot of computers either! Have a wonderful Christmas and see you for Epiphany.

  2. Pom Pom Says:

    I pray the same for you! I’d like a look at the two naughty cats! Have a wonderful trip and a lovely Christmas!

  3. Fiona Says:

    Lovely decorations. I hope you have a lovely Christmas.

  4. thistlewood farm Says:

    Thanks for the sweet comment on my blog. You made me laugh out loud….the house only looks that neat in pictures….we have four children….need I say more 🙂