Friday, January 7, 2022

Ten Things I'm Grateful For

 7th Dec 2022

Christmas is over, but here I want to continue being joyful and grateful for the many blessings that I have.
So this week I'm joining, as I sometimes do, the Ten Things of Thankful bloghop.

1. I'm so thankful for the wonderful time I had at the Royal Albert Hall in London. What a joy it was to be there for their Carols just before Christmas, and how proud hubby and I were, our hearts fit to burst, to see our grandaughter singing with the Royal Orchestral Society. She's a beautiful singer and an even more beautiful person. A glorious day indeed. 

2. I am so thankful that we got to stay with our  daughter (auntie to said grandaughter) and her gorgeous family in Aylesbury, so that we could all travel to London together. We enjoyed our trip to London, fitting in the lights and a meal at Pizza Express. We met up with another daughter (mum to said grandaughter), and five more grandchildren ( siblings to said grandaughter) who'd also been to the Carols, obviously. We had two wonderful nights.

3. I'm also thankful that, on Christmas Eve, we got to go from Aylesbury  to Oxford and another daughter. A busy, happy house full of children. Everybody was doing something for the Christmas Day celebrations. A grandaughter making, not one but two Christmas logs, one gluten free for grandad. Someone else wrapping sausages with bacon and so much more. All eight children (three were missing - one married and living in Texas, another in London with Covid and having to stay with the boyfriends family, and yet another in Shropshire who was going to the in laws for the first time, though he's been married for nearly seven years) were busy doing something.

4. Staying with Christmas Eve, I'm thankful that we got to go with the family to midnight Mass. Yes, all the children went, even the six and four year olds. Two of the boys were serving . You really feel it's  Christmas when  you've been to midnight Mass. 
"Today a Saviour is born to us, Christ The Lord." 

5. My Faith is the most important thing to me and to see some of my children carry on the Faith in their own lives is just amazing. I must say, I did shed a few tears during the Mass, thanking God for everything. Although we didn't get to bed till three am on Christmas morning, I went to bed with a full heart and with a happiness I though could never be exceeded. 

6.  Then it was Christmas morning. We woke at about 8.0 am and there was no noise in the house, which I thought was unusual. After hubby and I did our prayer meditation, we crept down to the kitchen at 8.30 am to see if anyone was up. a few of the grandchildren were sitting round the table quietly waiting for everyone to come down. It was all very peaceful. Within a few minutes more joined us at the large table, though three of the teenagers didn't appear. We all ate our extra special granola and yogurt with blackcurrant jam - delicious. Cups of tea, glasses of orange juice and questions from the youngest about when we could all go and see if Santa had been. 

7. 10 minutes later mum goes to get the others out of bed, while the rest of us wait outside the living room door. Mum has to go in first. 
Ahh, eventually, about 9.15 am mum creeps into the room by herself to make sure everything is in order. 
Then, gently she opens the door, and we slowly follow the little ones in.

8. "Oh, wow, look..." Patrick, 4, as his eyes take in all the stockings - 8 of them - laying full to bursting in front of the fireplace. But the biggest wow is when he and his sister Annie, 6, spot the plate that was left for Santa, which contains one half eaten mince pie and an empty glass with just the dregs of the brandy at the bottom - proof it had been drunk. And the "nibbled" carrot that the reindeer obviously has a bit of. Then he spots the presents under the tree. Not many, only one for each of the children, but it's still a fair pile considering there are 8 of them. His wonder was the magic of Christmas for me. But before opening any presents,  there's one thing  that must be done first 

9. All this time Patrick had the baby Jesus in his hands ready to place in the crib and now was the time. Looking on as my little grandson lovingly placed the baby Jesus in the manger was a great moment for me. I am so grateful I was there to see him. 
Then we sing :
First, Happy Birthday
Then, Away In a Manger. 
Here is part of their Nativity Scene
I catch hubby looking at me with a tear in his eye. I love him more in that moment. 

10. Later on we have guests come to join us for dinner. The daughter we stayed with in Aylesbury with her hubby and three children. Dinner was roast lamb with rosemary and garlic, gorgeous little roast potatoes, parsnips, carrots, and much more. We all pulled crackers and after grace was said we tucked in. But more than the food what I enjoyed most was the company. After dinner we played card games, much to the delight of all. One in particular took everyone's fancy - you had to take a card which had the name of a Christmas song/carol on it. You had to hum the tune and the others had to guess what it was. I laughed so much my tummy hurt.

I know that's plenty of thankfuls, but they didn't stop there. On the 27th we were still in Oxford when our  grandson visited with his adorable wife and their five children. I was so thankful to see them as we don't get to that  often and they're always an inspiration to us.
We went home in the afternoon, tired , but happy.

On the 29th we had my daughter, her husband and her six children, to dinner. This if the family with the grandaughter who is a singer. I gave them bacon and cabbage and we talked about the wonderful night of the Carols.

I could go on. I've only covered a little of what has been happening in my life and in my family. But it's late. So I'll finish there.

Just to say that I thank God every day for my wonderful hubby and beautiful family.


  1. It sounds like a most joyous season! Praying you have a blessed and beautiful 2022 with many visits to all of these wonderful children and grandchildren.

  2. I am so grateful some of your children are carrying on your faith, that's truly amazing! I am also so proud of your granddaughter in the royal orchestra. Thanks for sharing such a wonderful list.

    1. Thank you Astrid. We do have many things to be thankful for

  3. I would have loved to have heard the Royal Orchestral Society singing at Royal Albert Hall. About 18-20 years ago I had the pleasure of being in London and seeing so many of the beautiful sights there, including the Royal Albert Hall, but just from the outside.
    I enjoyed ready about your family gatherings and about your traditional meals and treats.
    Do little children take a nap or two prior to going to Midnight Mass, and then sleep in a bit Christmas morning?

    1. Thank you for your comment dear Pat.
      The children didn't have a nap before Midnight Mass, no, but the two little ones slept through it, which meant it was very peaceful. They were already in their PJs and were transferred to their beds without waking.
      What were your celebrations like???

  4. My goodness! How to keep track of all the family and events, much less present an engaging story of holidays among those who are loved.
    very cool
    (sausage and bacon?! I am there! no doubt about it.
    Very enjoyable TToT for the beginning of a new year.

    1. Yes, Clark, so many to keep track of, but we love it.
      Thank you so much for reading my TTOT, and for your encouraging comment

  5. Your post was like reading a Dickens story! What a lovely holiday season you had! I enjoyed picturing all of it in my mind, and I may have drooled a little over those roasted potatoes!

    1. Thank you Dyanne. What a lovely comment. Dickens?? I suppose.

  6. How wonderful to get to spend time with your family. Happy new year to you!

    1. Yes, thank you, it was a great gift. Happy New Year to you too.

  7. "...we got to go with the family to midnight Mass."

    Oh, wow! I am surprised they had it.

    1. Yes, it's not usual here either. Well, midnight mass is, but not at midnight, more often than not around 9.00 pm. It brought me back to my own childhood when I walked one year to midnight mass with my two younger sisters. Three miles we walked in the snow. I was twelve. Mum and dad let us go. But I'm convinced my father was following us at a distance. He was outside to pick us up at the end anyhow.


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