Swiss Sunday

It’s Sunday here in damp and cold Yorkshire. I so want to be somewhere else, somewhere special. I want to have the best of dreams and adventures in a magical land. The best dreams should involve Switzerland.

I have been fortunate to visit this wonderful country on a number of occasions but sadly never during December. I so want to experience that time there, but I want to arrive in plenty of time. Santa arrives on the 6th December. On a donkey from the local forests rather than travelling airmail with reindeer’s all the way from the North Pole. This day is called Samichlaus Abend, that’s Santa’s Night. He brings bags of treats. Presents are exchanged on the night of the 24th and onwards. But Santa also comes with a dark hooded companion. That chap is in charge of punishing naughty children by hitting them with a broom of twigs. From what I’ve heard, his role is like a lighthearted pantomime villain.

From then until Christmas Eve (Helliger Abend – Holy Night), wonderful street markets, festivals and processions take place. Christmas Day often marks the start of the winter sports season.

Yes one year I would love to experience Christmas in Switzerland. We live in hope. Another dream to be worked towards.

Winter Solstice

I’m sat finalising this weeks food order. Another Christmas, another one where its just the two of us. With the pandemic Hawklad has forgotten what it feels like to meet up with extended the extended family. To meet up with friends. I really have to try and make memories for him. He only gets one childhood. Fun is required. Fine food is required (that might be a problem). Christmas movies on tap. Currently he’s enjoying Die Hard. Ok it’s no Wonderful Life but it is fun.

The winter solstice. Almost sunbathing weather.

At least the horse has a coat, a much needed coat. It’s days like this that I wish we have a roaring log fire. I don’t care how warm radiators are, they just aren’t the same. Maybe it’s time for my sisters strategy. Put an old TV in the front of the blocked fireplace and play roaring fire videos on repeat all day. It does make a difference.

This weather is playing havoc with our outside solar powered Christmas lights. The daily sun count is currently enough for about 3 minutes running time. Basically blink and you miss them.

What was I thinking, solar power and Yorkshire.

I think my solar power banks must running a tad low as well.

Any sun would be nice and I mean any sun. Looking at the forecast there is zero predicted over the next 7 days. It’s not looking good for those lights, hopefully Santa doesn’t need them as landing lights. He might need to call for John McClane.

Don’t matter

Looks like someone has been trying to draw clouds with a pink crayon. Very nice 😊

If only everything else was very nice.

Two contrasting messages from Hawklad’s school today.

We hope all pupils enjoy the well earned Christmas break which starts on Friday.

This contrasts nicely with messages from 5 subject teachers (so far)

Remember to revise for your important subject exams over the holiday. Exams happen immediately after your time off….

I’m sorry but I can’t ever remember enjoying myself while I was revising. I guess it fits in with the Government message that children must work harder and play less. But over the last few years children are increasingly seen as second class citizens in this country. Last night the CLOWNS in charge of the country announced an emergency campaign to give all adults a THIRD booster covid shot within weeks. NO MENTION OF CHILDREN. Currently only something like 50% of secondary school age pupils have received just one vaccine shot. Younger children aren’t eligible for even one shot. Most schools here have still not received any air quality monitoring devices or any air filters that were promised months back. Promised so that schools would be safe. Masks are required in all public places, all except the school classroom…. The government person in charge of schools went on the television to talk about covid – he never mentioned schools or children ONCE. Not once….. The Governments only education strategy currently is to KEEP SCHOOLS OPEN AT ALL COSTS, surely it has to be KEEP OUR CHILDREN SAFE AT ALL COSTS.

Sadly children just don’t matter to those in charge.

Hemmed in

The first signs of the next storm heading our way. Cold, wet, bleak and punishingly windy. Not a day to be outside. Problem is when I’m stuck inside, that feeling of being hemmed in just gets ramped up even more. Never suffered from claustrophobia but I have done since the world changed back in 2016.

Over those 5 years I’ve learnt that the best strategy is DISTRACTION. Focus on homeschooling. Housework, more housework, even washing the windows. Wow washing the windows. Kinda worked. But they don’t work as well as some four legged distractions.

I have a new movie franchise.

It’s the action movie this time of year has been waiting for since Die Hard. Fearsome beasts meet the festive holidays.

I give you the trailers to JURASSIC CHRISTMAS…

Apex Predator
Carnage
Fatcatasauros

What have I forgotten

This old tree has seen some life. A few too many lightning strikes means it’s nowhere near the size it was a few years back. It’s seen a fair few Christmases. One more to add to the list today.

Since the world changed a few years back I have made a point of buying myself a present for Christmas . I don’t know why. Just kind of started. It’s not a big present. Just something. It feels like a connection with a much different world.

Well guess what. Guess who forgot to buy someone something. That gave me a chuckle.

Then a thought struck me. What about that tree. Our tree. When was the last time it was remembered at this time. Well it was today. I marched across and gave it a hug.

Happy Christmas Tree.

Lines

Remind me not to fly my kite here.

It’s Christmas. Hawklad is happy. Very happy with his presents so far. Amazed that his Dad hasn’t messed up yet. Well apart from his new FIFA computer game seems to come wrapped with a free pair of scissors. I wondered where they disappeared to. Thankfully he has given me them back.

It’s an odd house these days. Probably something to do with it being completely MALE. Two humans, a dog, a cat, gerbils – all with an X and Y chromosome. That explains so much.

Maybe it explains one strange Christmas tradition. Hawklad has had that Santa conversation. So why do we still put out mince pies and a drink for Santa. A large pile of carrots for the reindeer’s. We even still draw lines on bits of paper pointing the big red fella to the location of the feast.

Maybe it’s time for someone to have that Santa conversation with ME…..

Feels like

Christmas Eve brought the first snow flurries of winter. Not much but it certainly changed the mood. Kind of feels like December now.

Last night we had our first ever Santa Christmas Drive. It replaced a ride on the Christmas Train which is not happening this odd year. Engine 1264 is getting a well earned rest. It is 73 years old.

The car was decked out in Christmas lights. Filled with party food. Christmas music on tap. And off we set to look at the various Christmas lights in the surrounding villages. We parked up halfway round to give the sleigh driver a break and to see how badly we could do at a Christmas Quiz. Spectacularly badly. We couldn’t even answer the questions about a movie we had seen only a few hours previously.

The Santa Christmas Drive definitely worked. Hawklad really enjoyed it. That’s all that matters. Ok he had to have a really really really long bath on his return. A complete change of clothing. Several sessions with the mouthwash. But it was worth it.

Only time will tell if it’s a one off stand in event or it’s now a new tradition. But it’s certainly another reason why it now feels a lot like December.

White Christmas

Well not quite…..

Can you spot someone practising to be either Cyclops from the X-Men or Vision from The Avengers.

This was 7.20pm on Christmas Eve. It’s as white as it’s going to get. Thought I had better take a photo while it’s at its DEEPEST…..

So as we fight to survive this mega blizzard I want to send you warm winter wishes your way. ❤️

Plague Island

So that’s the shopping done for the week. We are now officially closed for Christmas. Time to get behind our fence and shut the world out for 7 days. Or longer if we are plunged into a Tier 4 lockdown (more of the country will go that way on Boxing Day apparently).

So it’s Christmas Eve on Plague Island. It’s not entirely sure if its a virus related Plague or a Plague of self absorbed, imbecilic, on the take, cretins apparently running this country.

We have enough food and drink to last us weeks. We have enough options to cobble together a couple of special holiday meals for two. Certainly not Plan A or B food options, but the C menu will be just fine. Actually with my Thanos like cooking skills at the click of the fingers any food taste can be suddenly turned to dust. So it really doesn’t matter in the end.

A few days of being an island cut adrift from the world has started to take its toll. Hardly any fresh fruit or veg in the store. The stuff which is still there is getting snapped up instantly. No chocolate ice cream. I will say that again. No chocolate ice cream. Oh the humanity….

But in the scheme of things. We are so fortunate. Too many are not so lucky.

So we are lucky to be on the right side of our fence. Hawklad is definitely not on Santa’s naughty list. Me – I’m not so sure. Yes the weather is horrible but actually if you close your eyes, the sun will still shine.

Yes it’s alright in this side of the fence, living on Plague Island.