23rd December, 2012
The Blog began four years ago this week. Mum had died a few months earlier. Pauline’s Mum was still with us although she was beginning to feel rather unstable on her feet at the age of 94. She managed another two years. Four months after the first Blog entries, we had left our jobs and taken the first steps into the world of retirement. We had already spent a our holidays for a couple of years in our Greek house and were contemplating freshening up our home in England prior to putting it on the market. At the time, we had intended to work for one more year. We might even have done two if the house didn’t sell. As it is, we had to seize the financial settlement on offer while it was there and to move on to our next five year plan.
Unlike previous diary attempts which failed on day two, this one has endured for the very reason that so much has changed in our lives since its inception. The Blog has formed a stable axis of a turning world and I believe that it will continue to do so.
24th December, 2012
A lovely, bright and extremely mild day. Pauline has spent the morning preparing things for the family feast tomorrow – making chocolate torte, making ice cream and orange sorbet. I spent a few hours working on a new, on-line photo album software which I need to help me upgrade the Sanders Site as it presents new things. Later in the afternoon, we all met at The Maybury Inn for an early evening meal. Two of the boys, aged 11 and 9, were already rather too tired. It was a nice, homely meal to start Christmas.
25th December, 2012
To most of our Greek readers, Καλά Χριστούγεννα. Happy Christmas to one & all. Bah, Humbug!
We woke to a mild, bright morning but, by the time we had finished breakfast, the skies were leaden with dark thunder clouds which opened and deluged the neighbourhood. Soon we will leave for Pauline’s family’s home to suffer Christmas.
Pauline cooked a wonderful meal. Everyone had a happy time. We ran off when Strictly Come Dancing was mentioned and retreated to the sanity of ‘Sanders Towers’.
26th December, 2012
The morning is wonderful and calm. The sky is blue and the sun is pouring through the windows. The temperature is only 8C/47F but feels much warmer. No Health Club today. We used to drive to the coast for a picnic on Boxing Day but we have decided to spend the day reading and writing. Pauline sent for three swimming costumes and they arrived on Christmas Eve. She is trying them on this morning and parading around the house. All part of life’s rich tapestry. This evening, there are a couple of football matches to watch.
Turkey Pie for our meal today followed by the remainder of the wonderful chocolate torte with raspberry sauce that Pauline made for the Christmas Day meal.
The whole day was complete when United won in the last minute and City lost….again.
27th December, 2012
Another lovely & bright day. I received a letter from Bill Flook including copies of :
- Mabel Lilian Flook’s Birth Certificate
- Mabel Lilian Flook’s Marriage Certificate to Richard Watthew Sanders – our Grandfather
- Mabel Lilian Flook’s Death Certificate
- Richard Watthew Sanders’ Birth Certificate
While I was idly browsing a research bank, I also came across
- Auntie Kessie’s Teaching Appointment Record.
I am beginning to make connections, to feel empathy with lost members of my family. I am wandering around in a world of Repton of a century ago and to realise what events must have meant to them. It is quite exciting.
Phyllis bought us some wonderful freesias before Christmas and, as they continue to open, the lounge becomes increasingly perfumed. I love flowers. If it didn’t feel so decadent and self indulgent, I would fill the house with them.
28th December, 2012
Incredibly mild for the end of December. These dog days between Christmas and New Year are strangely anti-climactic. However, we have our wedding anniversary to celebrate on the 30th so that is one event to look forward to. We may go out for lunch if we can manage to eat anything after Christmas food.
I’ve spent the day planning for 2013. Pauline & I always like to be clear about our commitments and targets where ever we are. More of this will unfold as time passes. For the immediate, I am about to work on the Sanders Website and one of my needs is display the genealogical material efficiently. I particularly want to display graphics attractively. I use Macromedia Dreamweaver and there is a very basic facility in there to do the job but the professional platform is Java. I learned very early on that I am not a scripter. I went on a very expensive three day course and sank without trace. I was quite surprised because I think extremely logically but I was useless at learning script. I’ve bought a small, off-the-peg program to build my presentations for me. Even I can do it. Now the web will be swamped with photo albums.
29th December, 2012
Received an email from Ruth today with a nice photo of a few old codgers. I’m still looking for the key to turn time back particularly when I hear reports of people like Tony Gregg falling off the conveyor belt at 66!