Sunday, 18 January 2015


It is going to be the start of the week tomorrow, and I am now just starting to get excited. On Friday I will leave England to join my son and his wife and sons, in Perth Australia, for a two week visit. He married his second wife almost six years ago, and had their reception on our front lawn with a huge marquee. It was in June, and the evening was utterly magical. The happiness abounded and everyone was there including his dad, my first husband. They had a superb holiday in the tropics, and on their return told us that they were already expecting a child.. Of course I was over the moon and happy for them, and his son from his first marriage looked forward to having a sibling after such a long time as an only child. Baby Griffin was born in the January, and by the Spring of that year, all my darlings were settling in in Australia* I had thought that until baby was at least five years old he would know me as a granny and able to babysit like I had done for all my other grandchildren. But that was not to be, and although it broke my heart,just as it did when Gabriella took her husband and son to Canada, this was his road and I had to support it. Saying its only a days' travel was easily reassuring, but the cost of the fares would be high and so not on my agenda for a long time- had to save up!!. I am happy to say that Dan made a great success of his life in Australia and is happily soaring high in his chosen profession, whilst his wife has been on maternity leave and will return to her high powered job in February this year. They live outside Perth, not far from the sea, and I am going to be utterly charmed with their way of life I am sure. I love the fact that all my kids have taken the flag and run harder, faster and further than their father and I , ever did. And that's what should happen, each generation doing better and better! The only sad thing I have seen in my family,is that there is only one that feels faith in religion ... I gave them the basics, and they must do as they wish with that knowledge. So in less than 6 days I shall be catching the plane and stopping off at Dubai, before arriving in Perth on Saturday 24th. I shall be travelling alone, as my husband has not wished to renew his passport and will stay behind to care for the dogs and the house. It is sad, because once he is on holiday, he is such great company, but again, these are his wishes, and at least I am able to go. This year will be busy as I shall also see Gaby in Canada in June, another great fortnight in store for me again. Tinged with a bit of sadness because her sixteen year old has left home and is not in touch with his parents at all. Such heartbreak he has wrought with the use of the drugs, and all we can do again, is pray he comes home one day , before he drifts into further waters which might not let him come back. All a worry, but as I have said to myself so many times, we all have different roads to travel, if you can manage to travel alongside your kids you are lucky* It promises to be a cold week, so I am in a quandry what exactly to wear to go away.. I think I shall leave my heavy overcoat in the car, and get it to put on, when John comes to collect me at the end of the holiday-that should be alright. Going to Mass today, I was at the back with little ones making a huge noise so it was hard to hear the sermon, but I also lit candles for my grandson's safe return which made me cry less.. Faith is a hard thing to find and if you are lucky it will help in so many ways to overcome all sorts of hardships and difficulties. The best thing I ever did for both my parents was making sure that they had the Last Sacrament, which gave them both a deep feeling of comfort in their last hours. I hope that one day I might be able to be just as sure as they were, that they would meet again in the next life. My mother was a convert and she got my dad to understand his own religion at a much deeper level, from all her questions, he had to find the answers and in so doing, discovered stronger feelings for his faith. I have seen from many blogs, that people have not been as lucky as I was, having parents that both loved me and my brother without question. They made us feel that we could succeed at anything we really wanted to, and that helped us a long way towards becoming confident people. When I go to Australia, I will be able to see how their love in me, and that which I passed on to my children, have helped them all to reap the best possible lives they could have. Daniel took a big leap of faith leaving England where he was very appreciated in his high powered job as a 'Creative Director', to start looking for work in a foreign land. Making such a move was a big step for him, and by golly did he prove himself in the first years by getting himself an excellent job which he has grown further and now is in charge of his team and into making films for tv. It is a couple of years since he visited with Griffin and stayed with me and joined his big son here. It was a smashing summer month and had loads of pictures to show how happy we all were.. I am sure that in a few days I will equal those numbers of pictures as I take them as records of another happy time with my family.. Can't wait!!

Thursday, 8 January 2015

its an outrage that shook us all!

I cannot believe that in the name of their god, those terrible murderers killed all those cartoonists in Paris yesterday! Satire has been with us since time began.. and it is a necessary option to life being all wonderful and just so! Seeing the other side views of people, events and things makes the day laughable at times... where on earth do these people get the idea that murder in any form is the right answer ?.... So they satirised their prophet, so what?? we have seen satire about the popes, Jesus,kings, queens countries, leaders etc etc from Roman and Greek times.. . what makes their prophet any more important?? I will tell you that by trying to accommodate all types of religions other than Christianity or Judaism in this country and Europe and the rest of the western world is going to lead up to a terrible war.. a Second Crusade as they ,the jihadi's are calling it.. Where are the leaders of the Muslim faith standing up to denounce such acts of terror.?... not heard in Public, that's for sure.!! .. I am steaming over the senseless killing of perfectly kind nice funny humorous people going about their daily business and ending up dead!! ... and utterly incensed at that poor policeman who incidendentaly was a Muslim!

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Back to Biscuit Wednesdays..

Here we are again, biscuit wednesday is the day we go to collect John's grandsons after school and take them back to their house until their parents get back from work. We only do this day once a week, and over the years, starting when they were both at nursury, we have religiously managed to get over and collect and look after them. It means that we have had much more contact than the other grandparents, and we are so lucky. Watching them grow up week by week, being close to them, has brought great happpiness to my husband and myself. Before we had this arrangement I had had quite a difficult relationship with his daughter, their mother. From the outset, despite me not being the reason that their parents' marriage had broken, she simply despised me, and being the eldest child, it meant that the other siblings did too.. so not a happy time all round. Then after the boys were born and she could see how much I really did love them too, she has changed enormously and we are quite good friends now, and her sister and brother are much nicer too! Having had five children of my own and three of them providing me with grandchildren, I already have 9 blood grandchildren, but these two boys were icing on the cake, and I loved them just as much as all the others.. But the best bit of Christmas this year past, was the fact that John's son and his wife gave the family a little girl called Amelia and she has made everyone so happy. In the early days of our babysitting, we used to get the boys to practice their reading, but now that they are almost 10 and 8, and can read perfectly well, we have had to invent other things to do. John would rather be interacting with them, than sitting watching them watching tv, and so he tried to teach them Chess. This was a big success, and in fact the boys have taken to it so well, they sometimes beat their grandfather! Football is another area where they can interact. John has found a renewed interest in knowing all about news of the football world, and the fact that both boys play for teams at the weekend makes it all so much more real. When I had my children, I had a boy then a girl, then another girl, finishing up with another two football was not heavily on our agenda. My boys seemed to prefer athletics or basketball , not really football. For myself, I can do without standing on the sidelines in the freezing cold, waiting for the teams to play.. god the times I got heavy colds doing that, doesn't bear thinking about.!!! With the addition of this new granddaughter, I wonder what her delights will be... will it be ballet like for a lot of little girls, or running or tennis or netball.. all that to find out. At the moment she is only 10 days old and her future is all before her..lucky her.. The weather has been grey and quite miserable, but that is to be expected for winter isnt it? We forget, having had a reasonable summer last year, just how grey and wet and cold it can be in Winter, but once January is out of the way and the little buds start appearing and spring seems round the corner, the cold seems more bearable. This January I am quite getting excited, because on the 23rd of this month I am going to visit my son in Australia. He lives there in Perth with his second wife and their two sons. I have never visited before, so its going to be quite an adventure. If you have read previous posts, I have Cauda Equina Syndrome, which means my nether parts are part paralysed, so I have no idea when is happening down below, and have to be pretty aware and manage as best I can, so this long trip will tax all my strength to keep on top of my necessary needs and medications. I tried late last year to visit my brother in the South of France and that went pretty well, so gave me confidence to seek further afield flights.. I am sure I will have the holiday of a lifetime and cannot wait to get started. Luckily my husband is content to stay home and he will do the collecting and babysitting on his own with the boys. They are really such easy kids to care for.. as long as they are fed and watered and happily playing games or reading, we do not get any trouble from them at all. Probably because we do go home and not there all the time! The live about a forty minute drive from us, so easily driven there. Their house is a very large semi in a very pretty village. It would be nice, if when we downsize from our Rectory, we could find a home in the same village, but that is not going to be for a couple more years. anything might happen in that time. It would be most pleasant though to be able to be near the boys and in a smaller house in a pretty village..we shall see. With Amelia, we have offered babysitting too, although they are just over an hour away...I know that with distances in Canada and America ,much larger distances are usually between families, so its quite viable to offer our services to her, as we would love to be just as involved as with the boys. So, I am getting ready to put my coat on, take my crochet to do, and a book to read maybe, and we shall be off in a minute... Biscuit Wednesdays are so called, because in the early days, there was always a large tin of biscuits for the boys to eat from, and that is how it got its name*

Saturday, 3 January 2015

another New Year

Well, here we are again, at the start of a whole new year before us.To celebrate this, I managed to get my page on facebook totally wrong, and was issued with another one, so my original is still here, but I cannot access it unless as a friend... which is utterly stupid, but thats my fault of course* I cannot be thinking straight as I simply could not fix it, and found answers in the forum utterly odd to understand... so I am stuck with trying to friend all my friends, who really are wondering why, since they were already friends** At the start of each new year, the newspapers go into overdrive about the past year and what has been I am ruminating here, about what I have actually managed to achieve also.. Since my spinal ops went so wrong almost five years ago, I have not ventured to travel on holiday at all, preferring to do short trips to friends who are very understanding if my body plays up whilst I am with them. Because I am semi paralysed in the lower regions I do not know what is going on there, and can, at times be caught 'very short' and that really is a mess. However during late summer, I was given an amount of money that was a refund, and straight away I bought myself a ticket to visit my brother in his home in the South of France. I went for two weeks, and my body behaved right up until the last day, and luckily we were still at the house, so no disasterous event outside in public* My two weeks were spent in utter easiness with my dear Sister in Law making all the meals, she would not let me help at all... Dinner parties with friends, and daily swimming in their garden swimming pool. The weather was not too hot, and I can tell you it was utter bliss. Added to that, my son Chris and his wife Amy joined us for a few days on their way back from driving around Spain.. magical days indeed. Heartened by this wonderful holiday, I then booked another two weeks in the sun, but this time all the way away in Australia, to see my eldest son, Daniel and his two boys and second wife. They all live in Perth and I am so looking forward to seeing them soon, as I will be leaving on the 23rd of this month! I have even got tickets to visit my daughter in Canada for another two weeks in June. So in a way, last year I managed to break the spell of being bound by my body and have managed to fly further afield. I am looking forward to it, a bit nervous, true, but if I have a disaster, then so be it... cannot worry about it, it might never happen.. I guess that is what I am going to carry with me into this New Year.. That it is absolutely no use worrying about all the 'what ifs',.just to go ahead and DO It! Apart from my acting more positively, I have also been praying a lot for my grandson in Canada. As soon as he turned 16 last May, he left home as he is addicted to smoking Pot, and would not give it up.. He had also been diagnosed with Aspergers' syndrome, but will not take the meds to calm his acute anxiety, finding smoking his way of self medicating. It has been an utter nightmare for his parents seeing their child living in half way houses and hanging out with the 'no hopers' in town. Where it will all lead, we are dreading to think,but I can tell you, a great deal of prayers have been going on.. his parents are still leaving the door open, but at the moment he has decided that he wants nothing more to do with them or his little sister.. so Christmas this year was a hard one for that little family. When I see people making light of smoking marijuanna,I get very upset, as it can destroy young brains, and I have seen it happen all too many times. He knows that he is truly loved, but chooses not to try and see it from their view, he is convinced that he is the only one with the right opinions and attitudes, so it will be a long time, if ever, before he returns home to his family and lives comfortably with them again. Of course he was given everything he wanted, and my girl and her husband worked hard to achieve a high level of comfort, but none of that matters if the family heart is broken. My New Year this year, no resolutions, just a determination to try and live life day by day, and 'not to sweat the small stuff' as they say, and I hope all of you have a great and enjoyable Year, this New Year.