Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve

After the pot-roast, a Holly-roast. (We made her move her right after I took this, before she got too overheated!)

New Year's Eve

Jackie's wonderful pot-roast that has been making the kitchen smell terrific all day- and it tastes as good as it looks and smells!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Year of the Dog!

Having just come in from a very brisk, windy walk with the dog (20 degrees Fahrenheit , 14 with the wind-chill, that's -10 for you Celsius users), I am tempted to reminisce that it is exactly a year ago today that we brought Holly home from the Elmsford Animal Shelter.

She was 5 months old, and they told us she was a Rat Terrier. We now know that she is in fact mostly Border Collie (according to the DNA test I had done a while ago she's 60% Border Collie, 30% English Springer Spaniel, and 10% Yorkshire Terrier), and she certainly has the Border Collie's intelligence and energy!

If you average it out that we walk about 3 miles together every day (well, I walk about 3 miles- sometimes more, sometimes less- she probably runs closer to 5 or 6) then we've covered over a thousand miles over the last year. I certainly feel a lot better for it, and she looks pretty good on it too!

She can be sweet, infuriating, and underfoot- and often all at once; and although Jackie likes to call her "Your dog", I think she likes her really, and Crispy adores her. I'm kinda fond of her myself!

So, here's to many more "Years of the Dog" with Holly!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

My favourite moment- the pew candles are put away, the carpets have been swept and church is all cleaned up and reset for the Christmas morning service; everything went well and I can go off and play Santa now with a satisfied feeling of a job well done by all concerned.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight!

Christmas Eve 11pm

Silent Night by candlelight.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

11 o'clock service

Musical prelude begun and candles lit!

Lessons & Carols

From my little sound room; and yes, that is the NORAD Santa tracker on my computer- got to keep tabs on the old saint :)

One down...

Well, the 3 o'clock is over- just under 400 souls (many of whom were under 5!).

Cleaned up, refilled candles and reset for the next one: 6pm Lessons & Carols. Here's the choir rehearsing.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Wonderland (cont.)

And finally a pretty view of the stream Holly swims in to cool of
towards the end of our walks in the summer.

Winter Wonderland (cont.)

And a few more of Holly having fun.

Winter Wonderland (cont.)

Here are my boots with my YakTracks- snow chains for your feet!

Winter Wonderland (cont.)

Holly had a fabulous time frolicking in the snow!

Winter Wonderland (cont.)

So here are some pics from our walk in the woods in the snow. It was
really lovely- although there were lots of footprints we didn't run into
another soul. And I didn't take my iPod, so the only sounds were the
crunching of snow under our feet and the jangle of Holly's tags.

Winter Wonderland

I snuck out from work to take Holly to Saxon Woods in the snow. I brought my good camera too so I'll post some more pics later :)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Nearing the end of a long day

It has been a long, but strangely satisfying, day.

Up at 4:50 this morning, coffee, then snowblowing and shoveling from
5:15 'til 9:15, quick shower, then normal Sunday 10am service etc. Set
up for the Pageant and the Potluck Dinner after Coffee Hour, then off to
the park with Crispy and the dog so he could sled and me and the dog
could play in the snow. Back upstairs from 2:30 to get ready for the
Pageant at 4 (went very well!), then Potluck supper and cleanup 'til 7.
Reset the church for nursery school chapel tomorrow, dig out the garbage
cans for the garbage men in the morning and then in and sitting here
writing this.

Just got to get the garbage men's Christmas bonus ready for the morning
and wrap my secret Santa gift for work tomorrow- and then I'm going to bed!

Pageant Potluck Supper

Afterwards in the parish hall (it's been a long day!)

Christmas Pageant

From my little control room.


Holly in the snow.


Seems like half of Rye are here with their sleds!

Crispy is in there somewhere :)

Saturday, December 19, 2009


So the snow is now really coming down! Holly thinks it's great and runs in great circles kickiing it up- we'll see what she thinks in the morning when it's deeper.

Bed time now so I can play in it (!) In the morning :)

While the snow falls outside...

...Holly enjoys the warmth of the fire as it burns down after we made s'mores.

It is finally snowing and we're supposed to get 12-16 inches overnight- so I'd better go to bed soon as I've got to get up at 5 to snowblow and shovel.

Nothing yet...

Well, we're done with our walk, and it looks like a bunch more people are here with their dogs. No snow yet, just a few brief flurries.

It's coming!

I guess they think it's gonna be pretty bad. This is the hill up to the parking lot at Saxon Woods where we park, they were just chaining it up as we pulled in.

So we'll just park here and walk up instead :)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Another cold Friday walk

Holly and I are doing the full 4+ mile loop of Saxon Woods today 'cos I don't know how much of a walk she'll get tomorrow or Sunday if we get the snow they're predicting and I have to shovel!

Wood carving

Finally getting Susan's name added to the board at the back of the church. Toby (a parishioner) managed to find a wood carver who will do it in situ- as no-one can work out how to get it off the wall.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Midland Holiday Concert

Here are a few more from the concert this morning.

The back row came in first so I was able to snap a few of Crispy with
his drum before the rest of the kids came in. He did an excellent job!

At Crispy's school

For the annual holiday concert (he's somewhere in the back with his bass drum).

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas tree

Forgot to post this yesterday- while I went back to work to try and finish a couple of the Christmas bulletins last night, Jackie and Crispy finished decorating the tree :)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Parish Hall

All cleaned up- just finished vacuuming, sweeping and mopping (damn little foil sprinkles!).

Advent Dinner

In full swing!

The Parish Hall

All set up and ready for the Advent Dinner later.

Pageant Rehearsal

In my little control room doing the audio, video and lighting during the last rehearsal for next Sunday's Christmas Pageant.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Confirmation shelter set-up

Making beds and packing goody-bags of donated socks, underwear, T-shirts, sweaters and candy for the homeless guys.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Friday walk- brrrr!

First proper cold day (below freezing), so Holly's wearing her smart, new RuffWear coat.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Friday, December 04, 2009

Crispy's report card

I love reading things like "bright, hardworking student", "good citizen", and "shown fine growth". But I think my favorite bit is over the page where his art teacher has just written "A total pleasure!"

So it looks like I can go to his parent/teacher meeting next Wednesday without any trepidation :)

He gets to pick whatever he wants for dinner tonight!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

It's that time of year...

...time to put the lights on the tree.

I guess that means Christmas really is less than a month away!