Saturday, 22 December 2012

The High Life

Yesterday I met up with an old friend for a bit of a catch up, and to walk his dalmatian. Obviously. 

Being the shortest day of the year and all, it was getting dark rather early so we decided to give our usual Purbecks trip a miss, and go local, rather than braving the hills and the rain. Unfortunately, we made a bit of a mistake (possibly my bad choices) and went for a wander in some local fields that surround the river Stour.  Needless to say everything was a bit muddy, and by the time my boots were sunk, we decided it was time to abandon ship, and so headed to the beach which was much less squelchy. 
Throop Mill

Squelchy Fields

Charlie the Dalmation

Flooding River

 We topped the evening off with an incredibly civilised dinner (made entirely from the reduced section of Tesco) including Crab Salad, Coffee Martinis and Ben and Jerry's

Crab and Salad. Om nom nom.

Coffee Martinis. Oh yes.

New Festive Flavours!
I can wholeheartedly recommend. 
All in all a very fun, very Christmassy day.

PS - This is my new favourite website - it recommends drinks based on your music choices! I can't think why I didn't come up with such an idea. It's called Drinkify

Friday, 21 December 2012

Truth for the Shortest Day of the Year

None upon Earth I Desire Beside Thee

How tedious and tasteless the hours,
When Jesus no longer I see!
Sweet prospects, sweet birds, and sweet flow’rs,
Have lost all their sweetness to me.
The mid-summer sun shines but dim,
The fields strive in vain to look gay;
But when I am happy in Him,
December’s as pleasant as May.

His name yields the richest perfume,
And sweeter than music His voice;
His presence disperses my gloom,
And makes all within me rejoice:
I should, were He always thus nigh,
Have nothing to wish or to fear;
No mortal so happy as I,
My summer would last all the year.

Content with beholding His face,
My all to His pleasure resigned,
No changes of season or place
Would make any change in my mind.
While blessed with a sense of His love,
A palace a toy would appear;
And prisons would palaces prove,
If Jesus would dwell with me there.

Dear Lord, if indeed I am Thine,
If Thou art my sun and my song;
Say, why do I languish and pine,
And why are my winters so long?
O drive these dark clouds from my sky,
Thy soul-cheering presence restore;
Or take me unto Thee on high,
Where winter and clouds are no more.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Christmas Festivities

The past few weeks have been a blur of essays, reading, notes, scraps of paper and slightly stressful trips to the library, so needless to say, I have been more than a little bit thrilled that Uni is finished for first term, and I have nothing but Christmas plans for the next few weeks.

I have returned to Bournemouth, and the joys of the South Coast, but so far it's only rained, and with my family at work and school and most of my friends from home still away, today has been a little dull. Still, Christmas films and mulled wine will be occurring this evening, so I definitely can't complain. 

The past weekend was full of Christmas excitement, firstly with a trip to the cinema to see The Hobbit, which I can safely say I have been waiting for, for probably close to ten years. It was a bit of a childhood dream, and as such I think I need to go see it again. It was full of quotes from the book, and there was an abundance of dwarves, so it was definitely an evening well spent. We also attempted to behave like dwarves in the toilets...

Dwarfish Friends

Saturday saw an early Christmas day with my housemates, with a trip to Borough Market to educate one of my friends on the joys of running around trying all the delicious, but expensive food for free. Being a week and a half before Christmas, the market was at it's best, but also it's busiest so we had to elbow our way through crowds to try Christmas pudding, and all the cheeses and olive oils you could ever want. Totally worth it though. We even popped into Southwark Cathedral which was looking especially beautiful with all of the decorations, including some foliage around a statue of Shakespeare. Go check it out. 

Housemates round the Tree

In the evening we made about a hundred biscuits, prior to cooking the best roast dinner in existence. With chicken stuffed with lemons and fresh rosemary, potatoes cooked with garlic, flour and sea salt, and real stuffing, we were all incredibly proud of our cooking accomplishments. We even had a guest, so we managed to get an actual photo of all of us ready to stuff our faces! 

Hungry for a Feast
We finished the evening off with biscuit decorating and Miracle on 34th Street, the perfect end to a very festive day. As a house, we're all rather busy and so often don't see very much of one another, so it felt like quite a treat to spend a whole weekend together. Sunday morning I had a friend over for brunch, and then we took a long walk around Victoria Park in an attempt to deal with our cravings for countryside. It wasn't quite the same, but still impressive. 

Victoria Park and The City

The weekend was topped off with not only a bit of Harry Potter, but an amazing Carol service at church. Over 1,000 people went to the two carol services, and Christchurch pulled off an incredible evening. I was proud to be part of it all. 

Choir and Band, with some fake snow too.
With so much going on I wasn't too prepared for an evening of interfaith workshops and discussion on Monday night, but it turned out to be a great evening of catching up with people I met in September, and discovering more about what people think. We finished the evening with a rather heated three person rant about feminism on the tube on the way home. I fear we might have been filmed. We probably were a bit of a sight. 

Tonight I'm looking forward to relaxing with some old friends. 

As much as I like time to chill out, I definitely need lots of sociable time, and a day of watching Homeland by myself was possibly not the most productive use of my time. 

I shall update you on more Christmas happenings soon! Much love x