Sunday, 21 December 2014

Winter Solstice

Last weekend, we went to see Andre Rieu perform live, with his Johann Sebastian Bach orchestra. It was lovely, although we got absolutely drenched on the way into the venue, by a sudden hailstorm! Fun! The concert made up for it though, and the events organiser at the venue was fantastic. She dried our coats, she even offered LittleBit a new pair of her own tights, after LittleBit's got soaked through, and gave her a t-shirt to go over her dress and keep her warm as her coat, shrug, dress and tights, were all absolutely wringing wet. LittleBit is now a Status Quo fan (because that's who was on the t-shirt that came down to her knees) because it kept her warm!

Midweek, was trophy night at football, and LittleBit is rather pleased with her trophy and certificate.

Then this Friday, I took Nanna to a live concert at the BBC Studios in Manchester for Radio 3. It was very good. We weren't allowed to photograph or record the concert itself, but I got a few photos in and around Media City, including one inside the studio before the orchestra arrived.

Today, on the Winter Solstice, I took LittleBit and two of her friends to the ballet (live streamed to the cinema) and saw the Bolshoi performing the Nutcracker. They have changed the story a bit, for example, the central character was called Marie, rather than Clara, and there was no Sugar Plum Fairy... it was very good though, the orchestra especially, were fabulous, and the girls seemed to enjoy it.

We're now just days away from Christmas. The tree is decorated, the presents wrapped, and the food ordered (to be collected on Tuesday, I should imagine the traffic will be bedlam, but it can't be helped).

We're having a party on Christmas Eve, which we hope will be enjoyed by all, and a quiet Christmas Day with relatives visiting on Boxing Day!

I've hardly had time to read or stitch, although I've managed some limited cooking (no baking since the shortbread though) and I have hardly written a word (one poem, this blog post, an imperial tonne of Christmas Cards, and a few letters, but no more work on any of my numerous wips), so I am rather looking forward to a few consecutive days off, when I hope to be able to read, stitch, write, bake, and curl up and catch up on television and radio shows that have been recorded! Although I'm not sure if I will ever have time to listen to the R4 10 hour spectacular that is War and Peace on New Years day, and I am not convinced that the tivo box would take the hit of it, so I shall have to decide later whether or not to listen to it on the i-player!

My festive highlights will include the radio dramatisation of Good Omens (starting tomorrow at 11pm) and the last episode of Cabin Pressure (a two parter starting on Christmas Eve), which along with Christmas Specials of Doctor Who, Downton Abbey and Strictly Come Dancing, will hopefully keep us entertained after the board games have gone away, and the Queen's speech is a distant memory.

I would like to wish you a Merry Christmas, Nadolig Llawen, God Jul, Buon Natale, Joyeux Nöel, Frohe Weihnachten, Feliz Navidad and Nollaig Cridheil.

I know that the solstice was today, so a happy solstice and I think I've missed Hannukah/Channukah by a few days, but I hope that any of you who celebrated, enjoyed it enormously!

I shall endeavour to post once more before 2015, but just in case I don't, Happy Hogmanay, and I hope that the bank holiday lasts longer than the hangover!

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