A Canadian gal living in Britain with 3 men and a dog. Wine helps.

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Surprising myself

I've just spent the last few hours baking and prepping for my Candle Party tomorrow evening. After a few short hours (and careful instruction from my mom) I now have chocolate macaroons & cherry balls chilling in the fridge. Hopefully there will be some resemblance to Gina's and people don't discreetly spit them back into their napkins!

I also have a hedgehog (cheeseball) chilling, which I at least know will be ok, as I've made one a few times prior. Tomorrow I will chop up some pita and vegetables for a tray to lay out with some of the dips I have (a few I even brought all the way form NS).

This is the first time I've really sat down all day as I also spent the afternoon at the Brigg Garden Centre with Wendy and Beryl. We wanted to check out the wonderful Christmas display they put on each year and weren't disappointed. After we had a scrummy lunch, I quite cheerfully dropped about £70 on Christmas decorations including lights for the outside of the house, something Andy and I have wanted to do since living together, but not so easily done when linked to three other homes. Now that we have a single family home there's no reason not to decorate it. I've already laid out a few Christmas bits but will go full out next weekend when we go pick out our tree.

I do so want this Christmas to be lovely and I'm trying to roll with the whole spirit notion. I think it might just be working, and may even kick into overdrive as soon as I break out the Bailey's on ice ;) and maybe a movie or two - as Dawn says, Elf anyone?.

I only wish I knew how to make apple cider!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Top of my Christmas List

Years ago, I read this book:

I adore Ken Follett's writing and The Pillars of the Earth held me enraptured for the short time it took me to read it. It is hands down one of my most favoured books. I keep meaning to read it again.

Now, more than ever, there is no reason not to. Because not only has Ken finally written another book he has written this:

which amazingly enough, happens to be a sequel to Pillars.

I've let my husband know that to find both hardback books under the tree on Christmas morning would make me a very happy girl.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Something similar to disbelief :)

I say this for a few reasons:

~ Today I started and just about completed my Christmas shopping for those back at home.

~ Its quiet and peaceful here as both boys are at their mother's for the evening.

~ And as I sit here I'm listening to the whoosh of the dishwasher. Yes, the dishwasher.

After nearly four long years I am again living in a home with a dishwasher. When I first moved here I didn't think I'd ever get used to not having one. Washing dishes by hand? Ick. However we didn't have room for one in our last little house and after a few years went by, I slowly got used to washing up by hand. Unfortunately, my hands have paid the penalty for it.

Now that we are living in a bigger house and I finally agreed to us purchasing one (believe it or not, it didn't seem as important anymore!?!) Its going to take some getting used to, but I don't think it will take long :) And with Andy's parents and sister joining us for Christmas Dinner, I think I will definitely be thankful for this mod con come Christmas Day.

Not to mention whenever we have any other small gatherings :)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

For every season...

Wow. So much has happened since I last blogged I truly don't know where to start.

I have been going through a few things of my own, however they are nothing I can't surpass. Ultimately family and friends are what is most important in life and I thank God everyday for these blessings in my life, both here and at home.

In the past month I have been fortunate enough to feel the warmth of my mother's arms around me, of her unconditional love, to laugh and cry with my sisters, brother and close friends, to feel the embrace of all my boys upon my return to the UK. I have felt the joy of our very dear friends Valentina and Mike, upon the birth of their beautiful baby girl, Lilyan Arwen; I have also felt the sadness of a childhood friend at the loss of her father, a man who was taken from this world much too early.

Life gives us some unexpected curve balls, for sure. It is who we have with us that helps us through these times. Be they good or bad (times ;).

Because life has thrown us a few curve balls lately, both in our personal and work lives, Andy and I decided to treat ourselves to a break in London. We stayed in luxury at the Marriott Hotel London, where we were treated to a champagne breakfast and enjoyed the delights of the wonderfully 'wicked' show Wicked, in the West End of London.

Now I feel the cold in the air as it quickly changes from Autumn into Winter and I'm thinking of things to come. I have Christmas to prepare for. This year I'm actually going to try and make it the best it can be, and actually look forward to it. Andy and I have vowed to really make a start at creating our own traditions, as a family. This I am looking forward to more than anything.