Sunday, 24 November 2013

Christening piece

An old tradition in the North of England is a christening piece; after a child is baptised, the father or godfather takes a christening parcel and gives it to the first person of the opposite sex to the baby (any age) and asks will they accept the baby's Christening piece. It brings luck to the giver and receiver.

Inside the parcel should be

salt- a preservative and hope for a long life
egg - sign of new life
savoury food- that the baby will always have food to eat
sweet food- that the baby will have a sweet life
silver (coin)- that the baby will not be poor in life.

I put an egg sandwich in the parcel I made up recently.
Myself and the Godfather of the baby's mother went out looking for a man! We had a giggle but we did manage to accost a youngish man on the village High Street who accepted the christening piece with a bemused smile- and wished the baby good luck- bless him!

Sunday, 17 November 2013


We have been globetrotting this week;
down to Yorkshire to help relatives move house....
helping another relative move furniture in order to lay carpets......
and been over to Cumbria for the wedding of old friends then went back over (after the Ball) to their reception the following day.
I am delighted, stiff and aching but I refuse to feel my age! I prefer to be busy and I have never been a ' sitter' when the world has so much to offer and explore.

The Grand Black and White Ball

I am run off my feet with so much going on....and this is all in November (or Movember) before the run up to Christmas starts in December.
We have been to a ball in the Old Assembly Rooms in Newcastle; four of us danced the night away in aid of fundraising for a new Breast Cancer MRI Scanner for the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) in the city; this scanner will pick up in High Density, the tiniest cancer cells I believe- which means biopsies can be done even if ultra sound cannot pick up a potential problem accurately as it is so small; that will get to identifying a problem much more quickly before it gets real growth going.
The Wedgewood ceilinged ballroom looked beautiful with tables surrounded by white and black bowed chairs- if you were sat on the pink bowed chair on each table you got a prize! The black, silver and cerise balloons floated above each magnificently laid table. All the ladies got a tiny gift (Ferrero Rocher!) and there were dozens of sponsors providing money donations, raffle and aauction prizes- and hard work!
Long frocks and dinner suits on- well you don't get to do this very often- and for such a good cause!


Why oh why did I encourage H1 to grow a moustache to lift the profile of prostate cancer?
Yes, I think men do not do as much as women who work so hard in so many ways to highlight the need to be breast aware and also to fundraise for research into and care of breast cancer but I am surrounded by hairy men who have decided to grow moustaches of all shapes and sizes- I think it ages them all so much- and I am put off by lots of men giving me bristly kisses!

I didn't like to tell this old friend that his beard was a lot whiter than when I first knew him- he thinks he looks like he did in the 60s


The last day of October has been and gone...and I am haunted by the fact that I have not blogged our pumpkin carving team

with 2 new members- one only 11months old and dressed as a pumpkin!

The door bell rang regularly with little people dressed in all sorts of weird garb.

Eeh! We were all 'terrified'!!!!! So paid them off with sweets. I prefer the kids that come with a Halloween poem or joke to earn their treat.

Then D3 had a party with all the usual friends so easy to relax with and pumpkin cake so easy to eat!

Westonbirt Arboretum

Some years ago we took D3 to be a bridesmaid at a wedding held at Westonbirt (Gloucestershire) Surrounded by trees of every variety known to man -this is the National Arboretum- I was entranced.

The acers (Japanese Maples) were pretty and manifold.

I kept reiterating that I would like to return in the autumn as I knew the colours would be glorious- but when exactly to pinpoint the best time? Particularly when the south was due to be hit by the 'St Judas' storm- which in fact missed us & the arboretum....

With so many other things going on is our lives, we combined a visit to another friend who shares the wish for the forest's seasonal colours, with both a trip to Wales and the Arboretum.

The photos which you can click on to enlarge- do not show the colours as brightly as I would like- the glades of multi coloured acers took my breath away.

Rumour hath it that England's autumn colours are better than the Fall in New England this year- due to our sunny Summer; certainly the change in colour has been late this year, or so everyone thinks.
But now the temperature has certainly dropped; I have even given in and put the autumn duvet on so the nights must be getting chillier; Durham had its first snow fall while we were down in the South West.