Cool Britannia (sort of): the British thread 2019

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  • Too and sweet definitely belong in the same sentence, and I find those seashells too sweet these days too. Choice of chocolates here were Bendicks Bitter Mints and Divine Ginger thins which are both dairy and gluten free.
  • NenyaNenya Shipmate

    One of my favourites too. I've seldom met a chocolate I didn't like.
  • Baptist TrainfanBaptist Trainfan Shipmate
    edited January 3
    They are always the concluding flourish to our Christmas lunch, with the coffee. Sadly now made in Germany (I noted on the box).
  • This is going to sound terribly pretentious, but I only enjoy Hotel Chocolat now. Seriously, they have less sugar and more chocolate, so two chocolates is all we need/can afford.

    I bought some for the Dowager once,and when she didn't comment, asked how she liked them.

    'Too sickly' she said

    Transpired she'd eaten the whole box in one go :scream:

    But their white chocolate is also lovely<yum>

    Mrs. S, slavering
  • DardaDarda Shipmate
    I’d love lobster lemon risotto and a glass of Pinot Grigio, please!
    Table ready, salads prepared and pizzas ready for the oven when the guests arrive (our old bible study group, church changed how groups were arranged 18 months ago but we still have regular get togethers).

    Our Home Group does its own thing, no matter what the Rector may want us to!
  • ferijenferijen Shipmate
    My in-laws arrived yesterday, and the schools don’t return til Monday, so it is still practically as well as technically Christmas chez Ferijen. Yesterday we had roast chicken and most of the trimmings, crackers and presents as well as Christmas pud and another boozy pudding.

    I thoroughly recommend this to lessen the January blues, although after three weeks of visitors/moving house/Christmas/school holidays I suspect Monday will fee incredibly boring and flat (I’m still on maternity leave for a while yet).
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    Food food food 🙄

    I’m back on my exercise and slimming regime after putting two pounds on over Christmas.

    A brisk walk with the dogs this morning (minus 1 - brrrrr! 🥶) then gym this afternoon.

    It has to be done!
  • Darda wrote: »

    Our Home Group does its own thing, no matter what the Rector may want us to!
    So did ours! But our free church (we belong to Relational Mission, which used to be New Frontiers) is experimenting with having varied termly groups to join instead which might be anything from a social group eating together to helping in the local community project to doing a bible study. I’ve done family Sunday afternoon walks, evening walks, dining, prayer group and run a beginners crochet group in the last 18 months. My current goal is to run a Death Cafe group! There were about 8 home groups around the city and some of these have decided to continue within the new structure.
    The idea is that we will get to know each other better and pray for and support each other, also to be accessible for people who don’t join bible study groups (there’s about 400 people at church). It is is an opportunity for anyone to volunteer to lead a group and be supported by the church in doing so, and for people who moan ‘we never study *insert book/subject* to do it themselves. Having a termly sign up means you don’t have to commit long term unless you want to.
  • Last night’s pizza party was fun and it was good to catch up with everyone. We ended up having competing on the Nintendo Switch and then playing a mafia-like game called Ultimate Werewolf.
    I need to get some work done, prepping for tomorrow morning’s online tutorial (review of block on relationships and health and assignment preparation) and planning the next one with another tutor. I’m waiting in for several parcels, mostly for my husband’s birthday next week so won’t go for a walk til later.
    Detox starts today, we are omelette for lunch (just me and youngest son) and miso veg soup for tea.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    My current goal is to run a Death Cafe group! [...]

    What is a 'Death Cafe' group, Heavenlyannie? I'm afraid it conjures up images of Monty Python's undertakers... , but then, I guess that's just me. - Pray tell!
  • A death cafe discusses all aspects of death, from advance directives to our experiences of bereavement to what hymns you would like at your funeral. It is an opportunity to have a frank and open discussion on a subject which is very important but is often left undiscussed, the sessions usually have a loose theme but are very open. I went to one run by the Quakers at Greenbelt (Quakers often run local death cafes open to the public).
    I used to be a nurse and now teach a module on death, dying and bereavement so I’m very in to open discussion of these kind of issues. The C of E have a programme called GraveTalk which describes itself as a ‘cafe space to talk about death, dying and funerals’. I have a set of their conversation cards ready for when I summon up the courage to convince someone to lead this with me.
  • A propos of none of the above, it's been quite an ornithological week here in the Deep Dark Woods (sounds like Lake Wobegon). For the last few nights, a local tawny owl has been so vociferous that I signed up for a BTO survey on hearing tawny owls :smiley:

    Then this morning Mr. S, who has a small weather station outside the study window, observed two great tits sitting on it. One was on the rain gauge, but the other was on the anemometer, and was clearly enjoying a gentle ride round and round ( a great tit teacup ride, perchance!)

    Mrs. S, thumbing her way through the bird book
  • I just saw two collared doves on my bird feeder. My first impression was ‘how on earth are they managing to rest on those perches which are designed for small birds like tits?’. Then one of them flew off and the other frantically tried to stay balanced before falling off!
  • They are always the concluding flourish to our Christmas lunch, with the coffee. Sadly now made in Germany (I noted on the box).
    Sadly indeed - they used to be made in the town where I grew up and the best school trip EVER was to the factory mmmmmm.

    Waxwings have arrived a few miles away in Asda’s carpark - they seem to have flown right over the estate where I live, ignoring the Rowanberries that they devoured a few years ago when we were invaded by birders from all over the country - if they (birds and birders) decide on a return visit I might open a pop-up tea shop.
  • We've had a wren hopping around the last couple of days. Don't often see them.
  • I saw what had to be a kite overhead during the Christmas week - I did double check and they are not unknown in this area. We've had buzzards for a while and I hear them first usually. My favourite sighting out yesterday was a group of long-tailed tits. I did try to photograph them but they flew on ahead as I focused.
  • NenyaNenya Shipmate
    Darda wrote: »
    I’d love lobster lemon risotto and a glass of Pinot Grigio, please!
    Table ready, salads prepared and pizzas ready for the oven when the guests arrive (our old bible study group, church changed how groups were arranged 18 months ago but we still have regular get togethers).

    Our Home Group does its own thing, no matter what the Rector may want us to!

    Ha ha - love that! We have some small groups in our church which are supposed to follow a specific pattern but the only ones that continue successfully (I'm part of one) are the ones that don't. :wink:
  • FredegundFredegund Shipmate
    Collared doves seem to have a better sense of balance than pigeons. The two on the front feeders have no problems, unlike the idiot feral pigeon at the back. The mess it makes is unbelievable. Must get round to identifying the things that grow below that feeder.
    Mr and Mrs Goldfinch and their extended family are still attacking the sunflower and niger feeders, together with a number of LBJ's which I still haven't identified. My excuse being that I have a fearful sinus headache, eldest has a bad case of asthma and chest infection, and Lothar has just done back to China leaving a trail of chaos to clear. Fed all the Christmas and New Year leftovers to the cats - really looking forward to beans on toast when I have an appetite.
    A belated Happy New Year to all shippies everywhere.
  • Winter has not yet officially begun here, as the usual harbingers (Redshanks) have not announced themselves by their distinctive voices:
    https://rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/redshank/

    What is this Global Warm Ing of which I hear others speak? It is an invention of the Chinese, according to tRump (He Who Must Be Heard And Obeyed.....).
    :rage:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    As I understand it, Global Warm Ing is why it's so bl**dy cold - something to do with Arctic thingies making weather more extreme at both ends of the thermometer.

    It's not too bad here today: currently 0°, and there doesn't seem to be anything falling from the sky.

    The Cathedral staff and partners are invited to the Deanery for dinner this evening, which should be a nice do - it'll be the last hurrah for festive, sparkly clothes, and then back to old clothes and porridge, as my dad used to say.
  • O well - not 2 bad here - cloudy, but coldish, with a chance of a light frost by dawn. The Episcopal Stove will, however, be stoked up this eve as per usual.

    No 930am Mass at Our Place tomorrow, as Father Helping-Us-Out is in bonnie Scotland for the week. Though others may wish to consign me to the stake, I will forego BCP Matins, and will languish in the Episcopal Bed until late morning.....
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    A death cafe discusses all aspects of death, from advance directives to our experiences of bereavement to what hymns you would like at your funeral. It is an opportunity to have a frank and open discussion on a subject which is very important but is often left undiscussed, the sessions usually have a loose theme but are very open. I went to one run by the Quakers at Greenbelt (Quakers often run local death cafes open to the public). [...]
    Thank you!

  • ThomasinaThomasina Shipmate
    We have always put out food for the birds, and used to be part of the BTO Garden Bird Survey. I don't feel like continuing it by myself, but still love looking at them. If I put food on the ground I am feeding squirrels, Jackdaws and feral pigeons (from the park behind us). I swear they have a sentinel bird who gives the signal as soon as I emerge from the backdoor!

    Earlier in the winter we had lots of Goldfinches, but they have deserted me, and the tits (3 sorts) robin, chaffinches etc. have free rein!
  • We had to stop putting out food for the birds as it was attracting RATS!
  • O well - not 2 bad here - cloudy, but coldish, with a chance of a light frost by dawn. The Episcopal Stove will, however, be stoked up this eve as per usual.
    As a matter of interest, has your Frail Bark ever been ice-bound? Admittedly the available means of escape is slightly easier than Shackleton's epic trek to Elephant Island and on to South Georgia!

  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    I watched a group (murder?) of crows mobbing a cat on the common today. It totally ignored them and sauntered it’s merry way home.

    My dogs were fascinated by the whole display.

    I have super squirrel proof bird feeders but I always put a little on the ground for the squirrels too. 🐿
  • Local squirrel climbs our feeder. We have a lower off ground feeder for the robins and doves but the jackdaws don’t use it, instead they dive bomb the feeders to get seed to drop so I regularly have to clear large swathes of seedlings (once a seed underneath grew into cannabis!).
    Still have a stinking cold and I’ve just finished presenting a two hour online tutorial. Might go for a long walk after lunch.
  • O well - not 2 bad here - cloudy, but coldish, with a chance of a light frost by dawn. The Episcopal Stove will, however, be stoked up this eve as per usual.
    As a matter of interest, has your Frail Bark ever been ice-bound? Admittedly the available means of escape is slightly easier than Shackleton's epic trek to Elephant Island and on to South Georgia!

    Not exactly, but there have been times when the river has frozen over, so that the retreating tide has left great sheets of Ice on the mud......

  • Today I wanted to hibernate but resisted, it feels much colder than the thermometer is showing. I feel the need of therapeutic chocolate and mulled wine. Instead, this evening I picked up my flute for the first time since before Christmas and, no surprise, made a dreadful sound. Some serious practice is needed before my lesson next week.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited January 5
    We had a very nice evening with the Cathedral staff last night - good food, good wine (which the Dean makes himself) and good company.

    I developed a bit of a headache after we got home (not that sort - I didn't have that much wine) and, most unusually for me, was in bed just after midnight. I must have needed my sleep (not sure why) because I slept with only a couple of "comfort breaks" until about 11 this morning.

    A lazy day has ensued ... :sleepy:
  • balaambalaam Shipmate
    I put on 5lb over Christmas.

    And have lost them again.

    12stone 0 at 5'10" ain't bad for a (nearly) 65 year old.
  • That sounds lovely Piglet. (Not so much the headache but rather the company and rest).

    I think it’s safe to say Christmas is now over and we are re-entering “the real world.”

    Please can the U.K. cloud gods decide to warm us up or snow as these days where it never really gets light are tiresome; we don’t even have being in the Arctic circle as an excuse!
  • DormouseDormouse Shipmate
    Yes, my decorations came down yesterday, and we're ceremoniously put into their boxes and bags. I have certain places where these things "go" and am reluctant to change it.. putting the Dec's away carefully is as important to me as putting them up.
  • DormouseDormouse Shipmate
    Meant to say that with the light scattering of snow that we've had, I feel reluctant to drive the 80 km to church...but I haven't been since before Christmas, so I think I should. I'll just need to pull on my big girl's knickers.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    I’m dodging Church today.

    I have the dubious privilege of doing the AV so I know what’s coming.

    This is a disadvantage when it puts me off going entirely! (I always produce the PP but we have a rota of three for driving the desk)
  • NenyaNenya Shipmate
    What kind of things make people here dodge church? Is it the form of service, who's speaking, who's leading the worship? Mr Nen isn't coming with me this morning and although he hasn't told me why I suspect it's at least partly because it's an all age service. Unlike me - I love an action song and hearing what the children say when they're asked about things.

    Not encouraging any sort of judgement on each other - just interested.
  • We are going to church once I kick my youngest teenager and my husband out of bed. We dodged church last week as both my teenagers didn’t get up til lunchtime but we excused them because it had been a busy week.
    We seldom dodge church. I like structure in my life and know that once we (as a family) start dodging something it becomes a habit. We can’t often dodge church anyway as my husband does Sunday school every other week. I would only purposely avoid church if the preaching is going to be on something dead horsey that will really annoy me and I wasn’t in the mood. I don’t think I’ve avoided a preacher.
    14 years ago we were at Trumpington Parish Church during their much publicised church conflict and we spent a summer finding reasons not to go to church. We then went to Greenbelt, relaxed and reflected on this, and decided to not go back. That’s when we found our current free church.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    I'm afraid I cannot contribute much to the food theme, although there certainly was plenty of it in the past few days and weeks. However, regarding AV pleasures, I am happy to report that - after the frustratingly missed funeral service - I still got some upliftedness of ye spirit, by attending a production of Bach's Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248, Parts I, V and VI in a small town nearby. It reminded me what a privilege it is being able to go to live music performances!

    When I got home, still filled with the vibrant music, I then found and listened to Gardiner's version of Parts IV to VI, and happily recognised the passages that were played in the concert, only hours before! They had given us a booklet with explanations and the text with the ticket, which I suppose is the done thing (luckily!), and so you could look up the words that were being sung. - And I've only discovered now that the whole Bach Christmas Oratorio is basically too long to be played in one single session, which wasn't the original intention anyway! (As a matter of fact, I think I had never heard Parts 4 to 6 before.) 'Our' choir consisted of several dozens of singers, so Gardiner's version was certainly more professional, but much less powerful vocally. Interesting!

    CDs and DVDs are nice, but they'll never replace the immediacy and all-around experience of a real concert: no artificial barrier between the music and yourself, the listener, just the real thing. And the sound and timbre of the baroque instruments will stay with me for a while! :smile:

    (I felt a bit Pigletty, even though I wasn't actively participating like she is, but it is a wonderful thing!)

    Have a good and blesséd Sunday, all!
  • That sounds like a beautiful way to spend time!
  • I took a break from church some years ago, and haven't gone back. I have been hoping to start attending the said 8am service (with no screens, bands or sound systems) now the curate with every-word-matters-itis is not around. But last night I didn't get a lot of sleep and struggled to get up in time this morning. The disruption of Christmas means I'm not finding it easy getting into a sleep pattern that gives me enough sleep around being awake to check meds are taken at midnight and providing breakfast to go with meds at 6am.
  • MrsBeakyMrsBeaky Shipmate
    I am going nowhere fast.......
    Daughter and family have been with us this weekend for the funeral of their friend and I was up all night with one of the grandchildren who is ill as I wanted to give them a bit of a break. Grandchild needs watching as a virus can trigger her severe asthma.
    Now she is bouncing around the house and I feel like death warmed up but I am so glad they were able to sleep!
  • finelinefineline Kerygmania Host
    Nenya wrote: »
    What kind of things make people here dodge church? Is it the form of service, who's speaking, who's leading the worship? Mr Nen isn't coming with me this morning and although he hasn't told me why I suspect it's at least partly because it's an all age service. Unlike me - I love an action song and hearing what the children say when they're asked about things.

    For me (also not going to church today), it's tiredness, difficulties with fluorescent lights (I haven't yet found a church that doesn't have them), having to take a bus, having to be organised with working out bus times, worrying about germs from everyone drinking from the same cup, also wondering about potential spiders in the wafer (from having stayed at a convent and helped with packaging altar breads, I discovered some have spiders in - we chucked those out as we were sorting, but not all altar breads are carefully sorted like that), and also wanting to avoid the man who literally asks every single person as they are leaving the church, in a forceful, fast, mechanical way, 'Are you staying for tea and coffee?' All these things sort of merge in my mind and become overwhelming.

    Because I became Catholic, it is supposed to be a sin if you don't go every Sunday, but I don't really believe that, so I don't see it as dodging church - just choosing not to go. But I also feel a bit uncomfortable going to other types of churches now, because I'm not supposed to take their communions any more.

    I did google and discovered there is a Catholic church I can get to by walking through the woods, so I wouldn't have to take a bus, and it would take about an hour, but it starts at 9:00am, so I'd have to get up early. I might try it one week though.
  • Today was an orchestra rehearsal morning (every 2 weeks) so I missed church but will go to the mid-week meeting.
    The rehearsal was a good opportunity to disperse a bit more of my Jerusalem Artichoke harvest, rather appropriate as I am in the wind section.
  • @fineline, that 9am Mass might be well worth a try, middle-of-the-night though it be! And you could always receive Communion in one kind only - i.e. the wafer - as I'm sure this is quite normal and OK in the RCC.

    I sometimes miss church if I'm simply feeling too frail to make it, but generally I'm driven by A Sense Of Duty. Given that I'm a C of E Lay Reader, perhaps that's not unreasonable, and I do tend to take part in the service most weeks (welcoming, reading a lesson, leading the prayers), even if I can't at present do much in the way of serving, acting as Deacon, or administering the chalice (I've only got two pairs of hands, and one of those is needed to manipulate my walking-stick!).

    Really, though, I don't think anyone need fret too much about missing church now and then, especially if there are Good And Pressing Reasons. I'm sure Our Blessed Lord (and His Mother) will understand. We know that OBL attended the synagogues, but we're not told that He went every Sabbath......
    :wink:

  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    I went to church for the first time this church year. Like @fineline I'm a Catholic so am not supposed to miss Mass without good reason, and my reasons weren't great, mainly not feeling like going. It isn't the church I usually go to, though it is my official parish church. There are lots of things I like about it, it's one of the few British Catholic churches that is actually pretty, starting life as a Victorian Italianate private chapel, the loop system works (vital when you are as deaf as me) and the music isn't bad. On the minus side it is very traditional, no female altar servers for instance. However, having avoided it when the previous parish priest was there I might make it my regular again. It was nice to actually sing some carols, I missed out the last few weeks.
  • PuzzlerPuzzler Shipmate
    I did not dodge church this morning but many of our folk did. It was a United Covenant Service with the Methodists. There are some who will never go anywhere other than the Parish Church, others may have had their own reasons, I don’t know.
    Suffice it to say, it was an excellent service, encompassing Epiphany, New Year and Communion which is part of the Covenant liturgy ( and almost identical with our C of E version).
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    What is this "dodging church" of which you speak??? :wink:

    When you're the organist's wife and you sing in the choir, the only reasons for missing church are: (a) being away on holiday; or (b) death (your own). :mrgreen:

    We celebrated the Epiphany (for once in a while, on its actual day) in suitable style with a service that included As with gladness men of old (rather boring alto part, but good hymn all the same) and Bethlehem Down by Warlock, which has to be one of the most beautiful carols in the whole repertoire - it just makes you shiver, even if you aren't cold.
  • Nenya wrote: »
    What kind of things make people here dodge church?

    We're bellringers - it's expected!

    AG


  • Baptist TrainfanBaptist Trainfan Shipmate
    edited January 6
    Piglet wrote: »
    The only reasons for missing church are ... death (your own).
    Pretty feeble excuse, if you ask me. (But you aren't).

  • Grand-toddler left me a New Year gift of a hefty cold which rapidly and thoroughly blocked my sinuses and hurt every bit of my face. Hot showers in the small hours gave a little relief, but Mr RoS took a trip to the chemist and bought decongestant tablets which were much more effective. I'm still full of cold, and the glands in my neck hurt, but I'm beginning to function again.
    The New Year schedule has been put back by several days as a result of my indisposition - first job that needs doing is to return the guest bedroom to its normal function of 'hobby room'. Then I can use the space to pack all the Christmas decorations, which have not yet come down, and to unpack all the ornaments and photographs that were taken down to make room for the decorations. I am hoping to feel up to starting all that tomorrow.

    The other NY gift left by visiting family was a huge panettone, which has remained untouched because I wasn't eating, and Mr RoS didn't notice the big box sitting on the kitchen table. It's probably as well that he hadn't because, now I have opened it, he has discovered that he likes it very much.
    To my surprise, I like it too. I have often wondered what there was celebratory about these boring-looking fruit loaves, but really I am finding it very palatable.

    Unlike chocolate seashells ;)
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