Rose's birthday cake ~ coffee and walnut ~ one of Mary's best !

Magic in the air

The charming gnome I got for Lucy

I used the wrong words to describe the beautiful blue lights which decorate our yard ~ first they FLASHED on/off but that was too much really : then Mary adjusted the setting to FLICKERING and that was easier on the eye and no fear of epileptic fits : finally they are TWINKLING ~ twinkling round the clock ~ just right !   As the lights are on 200 metres of flex with probably ten tiny bulbs to each metre there really are around two thousand of them !   No wonder it is such a spectacular display !!

Saul came on Friday to cut my toe nails ~ I may be a wreck in every other respect, but my toes are a joy to behold, he tells me.   Sure enough, Saul and half a dozen others had done the twenty miles to Scarborough and back pushing wheel barrows full of bricks ~ for charity ~ I gave him a fiver ~ they raised several thousand between them ~ they did not walk on the road but along the old railway track so at least avoiding the traffuc ~ madness surely, and Saul is no chicken ~ his fellow pushers were at least half his age !!

Oh, my !!  Rose has just brought me down a slice of her birthday cake ~ coffe and walnut ~ Mary certainly is a splendid cook ~ how kind !   And enough for tonight and tomorrow ¬

Monday evening : I've saved the second half of the cake to have with cup of tea while I watch the new series of that excellent TV drama : "Last Tango in Halifax"   Sue came in good time and changed my sheets ready for the laundry in the morning, and zoomed round with hoover as well ~ Chris Gill came and sorted out a cpouple of computer programmes for me ~ their baby son Evan is ten months old so this will be his first Christmas ~ Chris and Lyndsey have been fostering children for several years and are expecting their next one in January, hopefully a child of two or three who will fit in happily with Evan ~ I imagined it would be difficult not to favour him over the foster child but they don't seem to think so ~ an amazing couple ~ and both computer graduates I believe he said.

Right ~ no more tonight ~ time to put the telly on . . . 

Tuesday afternoon : and already dark at 4.15 ~ very depressing ~ Barbara came to collect her box of hyacinth bulbs, and Lucy, and Beverley  ~ so that was nice.   I've made a start on sending email to people instead of cards ~ will try and complete the list tomorrow.  Lucy is very worried as she has intense abdominal pains and so far the doctor can't identify the cause.   I think she really loved the red goblin I gave her ~ she brought an extraordinary Rudolph for me and a bottle of berry wine ~ so kind.   The final episode of Last Tango in Halifax tonight ~ a strong and believable drama.   "The Lady of Hay" is another of Barbara Erskine's time switch stories ~ this one between the present day and the twelfth century ~ clever and gripping.

Wednesday evening : Thank goodness ~ I've made a start on sending e-cards instead of the others ~ I should get the rest off tomorrow ~ Barbara came this morning with the bit of shopping I'd asked her for ~ good chat, and for once she made herself a mug of coffee ~ made a hefty lunch : bacon, boiled potato, sprouts and then stewed cranberries and custard ~ sound flop ~ Rosemary rang ~ they too are cutting down on cards, phoning instead ~ rang Allan Butterfield in Glusburn ~ he did not sound very well ~ I'm glad he's got Jean in his life nowadays, not living together but keeping an eye on each other.  Attach photo of the goblin I gave Lucy AND the wacky Rudolph she gave me !   Two daft old women !   She hoped I would invite her over for Christmas Day but I was quite blunt about it (quite cruel) and told her I enjoy being on my own at Christmas ~ I remember from past years how desparate she always is to find someone to share it with ~ mind you, she could have gone to lunch with her friend Lloyd's family ~ she was invited but turned it down for some reason.   Once we get this near to 25th practically every programme on radio or telly is funny ~ as if the season to be merry has come to mean endless inane laughter !!   Odd !   Johnny is here at no.3 so that's nice ~ Bev is going down to her mother in Lincolnshire ~ Tom and Mary are having an enormous house party with 10 or 11 family there.

Georgie's flowers still going strong after 10 days ~ Barbara tidied them up for me and gave them more water ~ they smell gorgeous too !

Louie bear seems to have adopted Rudolph and growls fiercely when I try to take him away ! Lucy brought me Rudolph who is certainly wacky !