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Category Archives: Celebration

Two Days to Note and Spring Flowers

I’m marking two special days today, World Down Syndrome Day  and International Poetry Day with a poem about the Human Family from a poet I admire greatly, Maya Angelou. You’ll find more of her poems here if you put her name in the search bar. This post and poem are for my friends, R,T and their wonderful little boy, A. You can read more about them here.

Human Family by Maya Angelou

I note the obvious differences
in the human family.
Some of us are serious,
some thrive on comedy.

Some declare their lives are lived
as true profundity,
and others claim they really live
the real reality.

The variety of our skin tones
can confuse, bemuse, delight,
brown and pink and beige and purple,
tan and blue and white.

I’ve sailed upon the seven seas
and stopped in every land,
I’ve seen the wonders of the world
not yet one common man.

I know ten thousand women
called Jane and Mary Jane,
but I’ve not seen any two
who really were the same.

Mirror twins are different
although their features jibe,
and lovers think quite different thoughts
while lying side by side.

We love and lose in China,
we weep on England’s moors,
and laugh and moan in Guinea,
and thrive on Spanish shores.

We seek success in Finland,
are born and die in Maine.
In minor ways we differ,
in major we’re the same.

I note the obvious differences
between each sort and type,
but we are more alike, my friends,
than we are unalike.

We are more alike, my friends,
than we are unalike.

We are more alike, my friends,
than we are unalike.

There are Primroses everywhere in Cornwall in Spring and the Violets are just beginning to show.

For my cousin, Wendy

 

 

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Mother’s Day, Pigeon and Cake

It’s Mother’s Day here in the UK and I send my love to all Mothers out there, especially to those who cannot be with their Mums today for one reason or another. I have posted the following piece before and it deserves to be here again. Thanks, Pip.

A message of love and compassion to all friends out there on Mother’s Day,, those who do not have their own children, to friends who are estranged from their children or their mothers and to friends who have lost treasured members of their family ... may you find unconditional love in unexpected places and a healthy channel for your own nurturing and creativity to help make the world around you a place where you feel cared for and are seen and known for who you are. x x

I felt very cherished today as we started with a special breakfast prepared by the lovely Mr S, I opened cards, enjoyed my flowers  and discovered a very special ginger biscuit from Daughter No 2.  I won’t be eating her!

From The Biscuiteers

It’s been bitterly cold again causing one of our resident pigeons to sit fluffing up on the fence.

There was a very delicious sounding recipe from Tamal Ray in The Guardian’s Feast this weekend,  It is as delicious as it sounded.

Almond and Berry Traybake with a citrus glaze

Seems to me to be a good day to share the online version of my letter to The Guardian on International Women’s Day.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/mar/07/womens-history-through-the-generations-of-my-family

 

 

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Friendly February, Imbolc and Snowdrops

Here is this month’s Action for Happiness calendar. Have a friendly month. Just want to put out a call of friendship to Ute, a Blogger friend who has Covid. Happily she is recovering, just, please,  keep her in your thoughts.  

We have left up our garden and indoor fairy lights until Candlemas as I heard on the radio that that is the moment when the days being longer have lengthened enough to notice so we don’t need the other lights anymore. I heard yesterday that this time of year is also the pagan festival of Imbolc which is about celebrating spring, the beginning of the lambing season and new life.  It is one of the four key festivals in the Celtic calendar – the others being Beltane, Lughnasadh and Samhain – and traditionally falls when winter stores of food were beginning to get low mid-winter and halfway between the shortest day and the spring equinox. It begins on February 1st and ends on February 2nd.

Some people decorate the mantlepiece  with items such as a vase of snowdrops, swan feather and/or  green candles.

 

Read more: https://metro.co.uk/2021/02/02/imbolc-festival-what-is-it-what-is-candlemas-and-who-is-st-brigid-13999132/?ito=cbshare

 

 

 

 

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Mittens, Storm and A Sticker

What a day! We watched the inauguration of Biden and Harris and found it very moving and full of hope for the future and we loved the poem, The Hill We Climb, by 22 year old Amanda Gorman, a ray of sunshine, from her words to her yellow coat, as my SIL said.  You can find out more about this remarkable young woman here. Another lovely thing was seeing Bernie Sanders in his wonderful hand knit mittens.

“To anyone watching the U.S. Inauguration events today, I’d just like to point out this iconic knitwear moment, and also say that this photo is the Berniest thing that ever Bernied. No understated classic black leather men’s gloves for our Bernie Sanders — he went for warmth and practicality, and I bet he has the most comfortable pair of hands of anyone there.
Bernie Sanders’ chevron and diamond patterned mittens were made by Jen Ellis, a teacher from Essex Junction, Vermont. She gave them to him over two years ago and he began wearing them on the campaign trail during his run for presidential nominee. They are made from repurposed wool sweaters and lined with fleece made from recycled plastic bottles.” Taken from a Facebook post by The Knitting Needle and the Damage Done.
Storm Christoph is far worse for our friends in the North, Here it is wet and windy but we have no flooding.Our Sailors’ Barometer has been overflowing to tell us that the storm has been overhead.
Our friend, who winter swims with her pals, The BlueTits, has this delightful sticker on her car as we saw on our walk today.
 

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Today’s Walk, Camellia Blossoms and Snow

Just the best day! We woke to sunshine, had a traditional birthday breakfast of croissants and after opening my presents and taking calls from our children, we went for a walk at Chapelporth. We took sandwiches with us and had hot chocolates from the cafe (its last day open as too many visitors from higher tier areas.) Just look at that sea!

The road to Chapelporth

The winter storms have scoured the top of the beach of sand and exposed the bedrock

Sunshine!

We arrived home to find a card and some glorious camellia blossoms from old friends on the doorstep. They are a more vibrant pink than the photo shows and are flowering in many gardens around us already brightening up the winter.

This afternoon we walked to the allotment and had tea and cake with our lovely neighbour, her sister and another allotmenteer, coming home in a sprinkling of snow which settled briefly on our baby Christmas tree and finding Dear Friends who had called by to drop off my cards. We are so lucky to have so many lovely people in our lives.

Dinner a deux tonight was confit duck, maple glazed carrots and parsnips, kalettes from our garden and baby Cornish potatoes – scrumptious. Dessert is still to come.

 

Front Door, Town Clock and A Party

We have the Christmas wreath on the front door.

We were late walking today ( I am spending every minute finishing off the embroidery wall panels for two of the LiveWires – forgive me for not coming to visit your blogs) and it was lovely to see the Town Clock from the park and to see the angel lights going up Fore Street through the bare winter trees.

Tonight was the Christmas party of one of my choirs, The Ingleheart Singers, all on zoom but fun nevertheless. It was good to see so many happy faces after all this time of not singing together.

The Ingleheart Singers.

 

Thanksgiving, Sky and A Parrot Flower

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO THOSE WE KNOW AND LOVE IN AMERICA!

We celebrate Thanksgiving at our house in honour of all our family and friends, including blogger friends, in America – in Georgia, Hawaii, Arizona, Washington State, Vermont and Massachusetts and elsewhere.  We have cooked a mini turkey (a chicken!) tonight and served it with some sides using recipes from family in Atlanta.

The sky this afternoon was very dramatic – I think its called a Mackerel Sky.

Our neighbour has the most amazing Strelitzia that reaches to the ceiling in her conservatory and it has five flowers! They are remarkable.

Strelitzia, also known as Bird of Paradise

 

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Collared Doves, Evening Sunlight and Mum

Another gloriously sunny and very cold day and the Collared Doves came together to feed. Collared Doves mate for life. When they have eggs in the nest, she looks after them all day and he returns at dusk to mind them and keep them warm all night.

Our exercise today, the first of lockdown was into town as we had a birthday card that needed to catch the last post. It was so very quiet and eerie with only food shops open and no-one around. The sun was lighting up  Pednandrea Mine chimney and a beautiful stained glass window in a nearby church. Perhaps someone local can tell me which one it is.

My lovely Mum was born on Bonfire Night one hundred and six years ago and, as a child, thought that everyone was celebrating her birthday with enormous fires and fireworks lighting up the sky.  As I write I can hear the fizz and whizzle, pop and slap of fireworks and the sky is lighting up sporadically. Mum would have loved it as she also loved storms and wild seas.

Here she is with her younger brother, a photo taken about 1920, we think.

 

New Border, Village Clock and A Treat

The wall garden is nearly planted – Conifers, Clematis, heathers and 100+ bulbs hiding under the  soil!  Just the Winter Flowering Pansies to add for winter colour.

So much stuff to take to the dump! I took this photo on our way back through the village of St Day.

We decided to treat ourselves after working so hard for the last few days so I booked us a table at The Penventon Hotel, just a ten minute walk away.  What a delightful evening we had with extra treats of dessert!

 

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A Wedding, A Dedication and A Celebration

On this day in 1939, my Mum and Dad were married.They were to have honeymooned in Paris but given that WWII broke out on September 3rd they had a weekend in Blackpool instead before my Dad went off to the army for five years.

My Mum at her wedding in 1939

My Mum at her wedding in 1939

My Dad retired early to write and dedicated his first novel to my Mum ( using a nom de plume as advised by the publishers as it was thought that women read more historical romantic fiction and that they like to read books written by women!) The novel is set in Cornwall in the late 1800’s and its background is the tin mining industry that was so important to the Cornish.

Dad's first novel, published in the US and the UK by Weidenfeld and Nicholson, in paperback by Sphere

Dad’s first novel, published in the US and the UK by Weidenfeld and Nicholson, in paperback by Sphere

The dedication

The dedication

Their Golden wedding in 1989 was a great big family reunion in Cornwall as by then my older brother and his wife and two children were living in Munich, Germany, my younger brother and his wife were in Atlanta, Georgia and my sister and her growing family were in Phoenix, Arizona and I was in Yorkshire with my family. The advance for Ellen Bray paid for everyone to come to the two week long party!

 

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