22 Dec 2017

Happy Christmas

Hello everyone.  I hope that all is well with you.  I'm thankful that the snow has melted away for the time being, that I've been able to take walks in the neighbourhood, go to some lovely social events and spend time with friends before the Christmas holidays begin. Our daughter had a good journey to our house and will be staying with us for a while, our home has been decorated for Christmas with all the decorations special to us and now we look forward to more time with family as we gather together at different times over the next week or two.

Thank you for your blog friendship especially during this year 2017. Happy Christmas to you all!

11 Dec 2017

Quiet Days

Many of us in the UK have had more snow over the weekend which has settled. It has not been heavy here, but the hills make it more difficult to get out-and-about. I had a pottery workshop booked in for later in the day, but I won't be able to go out today either for walking or driving down the hill to the main roads and bus/tram services because of the cold temperatures and the icy conditions.

Yesterday we lit the second candle on our Advent Wreath.  This year I improvised and used a vintage green glass fruit bowl with  four small tea lights for each Sunday of Advent.  There is plenty of greenery in the garden to make the wreath and I added some dried red roses from a collection of flowers and petals I had dried this year after receiving bunches of them as gifts. 

The Advent Wreath, Sheffield Anglican Cathedral
design Corin Mellor

artwork by one of the art and spirituality groups

'Love in Bloom'

The Advent Wreath Sheffield R.C. Cathedral

The city is a busy one at any time, but especially at this time of the year.  I enjoy seeing the Christmas decorations, doing some window shopping. However, I also like to find a quiet place to sit for a while and a church is a good one for me. The Anglican Cathedral has a collection of prayer installations 'exploring the promise of God to bring light from darkness and create beauty from chaos' and the Roman Catholic Cathedral has a Festival of Angels where children's artwork depicting angels decorate the church.

the Christmas tree outside Sheffield Town Hall

Back at home the nativity set was placed in the entrance hall. Each evening, curtains are drawn and candles are lit.  It's good to get to the end of the year, look back with thanks as well as look forward with anticipation and hope.
Wishing you a good day and a peaceful week,
Linda :)

3 Dec 2017

The Christmas Tree Festival, Castleton

St Edmund's Church is dedicated to Saint Edmund, King of East Anglia.  He was martyred after his defeat by the Danes in AD 869.  The church dates back to the 12th century, but there was a building on the site in Norman times. It was also called the Church of Peak Castle. The ruins of the castle, also known as Peveril Castle, are located on the hill opposite the church. 

There were fifty +  decorated Christmas trees.  Here are a few of them.  Some were easier to photograph than others.

St Edmund's Church Flower Team

Castleton Secret Gardens. An event each June
is part of the National Garden Scheme.
 Private gardens are open to visitors in aid of good causes.

Blue John fluorspar - various decorated trees represent
the caverns that can be visited and the
shops in Castleton where the gem stone
 that has been mined is polished
and made into jewellery and other items.

Caving and mountaineering groups in the area

Castleton Garland Ceremony and colourful procession through Castleton takes place 29th May. It incorporates traditional May Day customs with the commemoration of Charles II to the English throne also known as Oak Apple Day. The King and his Consort dressed in Stuart period costume ride through the town at the head of the procession.  A huge garland of flowers and greenery (usually made up from those gathered in local gardens) is brought to St. Edmund's Church where it's fixed to a pinnacle on the church tower. 

Castleton Historical Society

art workshop courses/art holiday breaks in the area

A Victorian stained glass window features Faith holding her anchor (a Christian symbol for faith).  Next to her is Hope holding a cross and Charity is holding a baby. 

The Prayer Tree

I hope that you had a good weekend.  On Saturday we visited our son, daughter-in-law and grandson. For lunch our DiL made a fish pie served with mixed vegetables or salad and for pudding we had a blackberry crumble with custard. She used blackberries she had picked earlier in the autumn and stored in the freezer. She had also made blackberry liqueur and she gave us a bottle of it as well as a bag of beautifully wrapped presents for the family which I'll put under the Christmas tree for when we have our Christmas family get-together. I don't usually decorate our tree until the Sunday before Christmas Day. 
Today our granddaughter came for lunch as she was home for the weekend. She had got a lift from another university student who has a car and who lives in our area.  It means that the two girls can sometimes share travel expenses and it's much more convenient and quicker than taking the train for our granddaughter. It was a lovely surprise when she phoned us to say that she was at home. She's just gone back for a few more more weeks of study, presentations and other assignments before she has a break for Christmas.  
Wishing you a peaceful week,
Linda :)