For years, we were told to cut our risk of heart disease by avoiding fatty foods like meat, cheese and cream. When researchers then decided fat wasn't all bad... that natural fat such as nuts and fish could actually protect against heart disease, I was angry for the lost decades. (Although I never did buy … Continue reading One Size Fits – not
Never Grandad mourned for the river he could never revisit. Molly couldn’t understand why he would want to. Here, in the pond, he didn’t have to dodge water voles and herons – whatever they were. (She pictured a heron as another kind of cat.) ‘There must be something we can do about that cat.’ Flash’s … Continue reading Pond People 4
Eddy and Flo ‘I’m river mir, born and bred,’ said Grandad. ‘Had a wife and son when I were caught with some sticklebacks by the children who lived in the house then. I recall their Pa weren’t best pleased when they emptied their bucket into the pond.’ ‘Are there others here from the river?’ Flash … Continue reading Pond People 3
Since last year, I've been following a blogger who talks with his chickens. I've no problem with that – I have discussions with the family's dogs (mainly about whether it's feeding time yet – they're a pragmatic bunch) but back when we were between dogs I've been known to talk to fish in the fish tank … Continue reading Feathered Friendship
Continuing the Mirlings' story. (Find part 1 here.) Something streaked past Molly, washing her aside and propelling the goldfish into the cover of reeds. The cat’s paw rose empty through the water. The bright blur swooped into a somersault before slowing to become an orange-and-black mirling. He landed with a flourish in front of Grandad … Continue reading The Pond People – 2
Mercy – one of those words that has shades of meaning.
This poem by Carol J Forrester struck a chord with me. I hope you like it too.
Is there a quota for mercy?
Do they give it to the younger angels,
take their hands on clear mornings,
and steer them to the edges of clouds
where they can peer over the banks
into the depths of blue beneath.
All our little prayers bubbling up
to be popped by small celestial palms
crumb dusted from the mercy
their mothers have parcelled out
so they can toss it to the mortals below.
And do some of us know the places
to stand on those clear mornings
where the young ones chatter
and rustle their down like tissue.
Which ones crumble mercy to dust
so it falls evenly and ripples far,
the others who wodge their palms
into pebbles that punch through
but settle far too soon.
Who’s voice calls them home.
Mary Mother of God have mercy, mercy on us all
Vertigo & Ghosts by Fiona Benson
I'm in the process of revisiting a story I wrote a couple of years ago and didn't finish. I plan to post it here in bite-sized instalments, in the hope that this will motivate me to finish it. I'll keep each post short – we're all busy people – but I welcome any feedback as … Continue reading Meet the Mirlings
January always seems the longest month of the year. Maybe it's because Christmas is like the culmination of December. The days after it finally arrives are filled with family catch-ups and travel between bases, and then there's New Year's Eve. By the time we settle back into "normality," it already seems an age since the … Continue reading January – the longest month
More about Christmas Crackers from Cabbieblog.com.
It’s the question soon to be asked at every table in Britain “Shall we pull the crackers before, or after dinner?”
This curious tradition of pulling on a roll of coloured paper was invented in London 165 years ago by Tom Smith.
Starting work at an ornamental confectioner’s Tom would experiment on producing more sophisticated designs of wedding cake decorations than was being sold by his employers. It wasn’t long before he branched out on his own setting up a business in Goswell Road producing confectionery products. Travelling widely in 1840 on a trip to Paris he discovered the ‘’Bon Bon’, a sugared almond wrapped in a twist of tissue paper. This simple confection which proved popular in London at Christmas would evolve into the cracker we know today.
His next improvement to the French ‘Bon Bon’ was to wrap a small love motto inside the tissue paper as a…
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Christmas Presence Griller scrambled over the top of the skip and landed beside Shorty among the scrap. Dislodged rubbish splashed into puddles far beneath them. Footsteps pounded along the alley. They returned slowly. The blue lights flashing above them were turned off and the police car left. The alley was quiet apart from the scurrying … Continue reading A Story for Christmas