Ninfield

At Last It’s Here!!: Well, I said that you’d soon hear if Christmas still hadn’t made an appearance in the homestead; so, luckily, it has now arrived-ish, the Tree is up, decorated thrice...(thank you Bramble-Kat!!) and looking twinkly and lovely. There’s an additional swathe of evergreen, pheasant feathers and lights hanging in the porch, strings of cards over the fireplace, and stockings either side of the hearth waiting for Santa to do the honours! Ok? So, writing Xmas cards is next, and I’ve even done a bit of online shopping... Crikey! Have I passed the Festive Test?! Maybe; but, as I write on Monday 17th, although the anticipation is beginning to bubble, I’m still not 100% convinced!

Anyway, I wasn’t expecting any more column items for this week, but of course forgot that the Hooe Open Group had their Christmas Lunch on the 14th, so this is their report from Edna Wallis...

H.O.G: The Lively Ladies of H.O.G. gathered together at the Wheatsheaf Inn, Little Common for their Xmas Luncheon, with everyone in a party mood. The event was a great success, with the Management making certain that it was Fabulously Festive in every way;- fancy hats, balloons, hooters and crackers all setting the Christmas ball rolling. Members and guests had a wonderful 3 course meal, and, as custom demands, the HOGs gave each lady a boxed Panettone Cake and each gentleman a small bottle of Grouse whiskey. The occasion was subsidised by the members collecting an ever dwindling supply of 5p coins, in miniature jam pots, emptied monthly at their meetings. HOGs will meet again on Friday 11th January, at their revised winter times of 1.30-3.30pm. All lively-lady readers are welcome to join the happy band of fun loving mature ladies, who enjoy each others company each month, and life in general. Call Edna on 01424 842591, and a Merry Christmas to all!

Through the eyes of...?: About 16 years ago I wrote a couple of poems for a celebratory community Christmas gathering in the Cotswolds. Every year the Village concerned put on a performance with local people reading, singing or enacting festive pieces, followed by food and drinks, and a good old fashioned Village Christmas Party; hosted by the local Vicar in the Church (Rev Paul - take note!!), it was something that everyone looked forward to, and prepared for, for months. I was asked to add to the items being performed, with the theme that year being, ‘Christmas- Through the eyes of..?’ and I produced the following pieces. I actually put them in the column a few years ago...Do you remember..?

Ooooh! That light! It really hurts my eyes!

I never will get used to this once-a-year surprise.

Here I’ve lain for 50 weeks, all snug and warm and dark,

Then they come and lift the lid and it’s all Up with the Lark!

Hang on- who’s doing it this year? Don’t tell me it’s Little Joe;

He’s all fingers and thumbs- Oh no, Good! here comes Mum!

Right, I think this is it...Here we Go!

The flight, by hand, from box to Tree is careful, smooth and calm,

I greet my friends along the way with a wave of one graceful arm.

There’s Soldier Sam, and Henry the Horse. and baubles and tinsel galore.

Drummer Boy Tom gives a wink as I rise to the top of the Tree from the floor.

OUCH! Why do they never remember? Don’t they know that pine-needles are sharp?

That’s right, laugh...it’s no fun...one went right up my bum! And another spiked Gabriels’ Harp!

Good, now I’ve got myself settled, I can survey the scene down below.

There’s a whole load of presents that Mum has just wrapped,

and the pile seems to just grow and grow!

The Nativity’s over the mantle, and Snowmen on each window sill.

Oh, they’ve bought a new bulb for the Angel, but the Christmas tree lights flicker still.

For many a year now I’ve taken this place,

watching Christmases rich, poor and thrifty,

I may not look trendy, my wings are all bendy...but they still love their Fairy who’s Fifty!

Bittersweet Christmas: This year we have lost two of our wonderful Canine Crew, Buddy and Bebe, and they are sorely missed, especially at this festive time. Losing loved ones is a wrench at any time of year, but to have lost someone close, or a beloved pet, in the run up to Christmas, is heartbreaking. The OH and I send lots of love, and thoughts of David, to Tim, Bob, Alison, and their families.

Christmas Church Services:

Family Carol Service- Sunday 23rd December 10.30am Methodist Church with Revd Tricia Williams

Carols and Christingle: Sunday 23rd December 3.30pm St Mary’s Church Ninfield.

Christmas Eve: Candlelight Crib Celebration 4-4.45pm - Methodist Church; a service for all, led by Revd Tricia Williams, please come along and enjoy this amazing time together, followed by refreshments.

Christmas Eve: St Oswald’s Church, Hooe - 6pm - Christmas Eucharist.

Christmas Day: St Mary’s, Ninfield 9.30am Parish Eucharist, St Oswald’s, Hooe 11am Parish Eucharist

And- Through the eyes of...?

Did they say it was going to snow this Christmas?

Did they forecast the frost an the ice?

I don’t seem to recall any mention at all,

And it really is not very nice!

Do you know how it feels to be sitting in slush?

Do you realise how cold and how damp?

Though my coat is quite warm, my feet have lost form,

and my toes are all seized up with cramp!

I possibly wouldn’t be feeling so bad

if I hadn’t been facing the windows.

Cos, all I can see is the warmth and the glee

at the party to celebrate Christmas.

It was only last year that I came to this house,

such a special, fantastic surprise...

I was ‘oooohed’ over, daily, and laughed at so gaily,

But, these 12 months have seen a demise....

Not a thought do they give to their friend in the dark,

not a care for those outside the home.

Not a muffler or sock; Oh! I do hate this rock!

PLEASE! Change places with this Garden Gnome!

Have A Very Merry Christmas!!: From Me, The O.H, my wonderful Esteemed Mama and, of course, Bramble-Kat, plus Canine Crew - Midge and The Terrier Trio - Nora, Winni-Poo and Maise Mae; “May your day be merry and bright”:- but I don’t think our Christmas will be White!!

Call 893699, or text 07970650321, email samanthaguard@btinternet.com for any news items for the New Year!