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Jolly things in June

July 5, 2016

As I said in my previous post, I was going to give up logging the small things that cheer me up because it seemed so very irrelevant in the light of what has happened. Then I thought a little more and realised that the little pleasures that enrich life actually matter even more when life is challenging. 

I’m a Harry Potter fan and I found myself thinking of Dumbledore and his famous remark that “Happiness can be found even in the darkest times if one only remembers to turn on the light.” I know purists will say it is from the script of Prizoner of Azkaban and JK Rowling didn’t write it but it doesn’t detract from the meaning.

I need to remember to keep turning that light on and I confess I am taking the advice literally, switching on my fairy lights and lighting candles in the evenings because it makes me feel better. There’s something about lighting a candle in particular that to me reminds me there’s always hope. 

We have a family tradition that wherever in the world we go, when we pass a church we slip inside and light a candle for my grandparents and late great aunt. There’ve been candles lighted for them in places my Granny would never have dreamed we’d go. I like to think she knows and is keeping score.

And so I move on to the things that helped me through June.

I went to a pub quiz night with a friend who cooked me a delicious dinner. I got to make a fuss of Millie cat and the very friendly golden retriever puppy in the pub. W didn’t come bottom either.

I spent a day in Brighton with H – we ate ice cream, drank Gin and wandered along the seafront.

I finished  making the 1940s style dolls house cupboard kit for my dolls house. I’m quite pleased with it for a first attempt.

Last birthday flowers from S – this really has been the gift that kept on giving.

TV evening with Mum. We had a Ziyafet takeaway (delicious Turkish food) and watched The Durrells. I enjoyed it so much I reread My Family and Other Animals at once.

I’ve started knitting again.

A lovely gossipy dinner with L, K and S

I have an outside tap at last – no more carrying the watering can up and downstairs to water my pots.

I have really quite flattering new glasses and clearer sight.

We had the first Barbecue of the year in the garden – we didn’t let rain stop us, the automatic awning on my parents back wall is ace and we stayed dry eating burgers and sausages while the rain poured down. Later we put the patio heater on and determinedly stayed outside in true British fashion. Picnic in the car anyone?

I had some splendid snail mail: from L and A

Bonus flowers from Bloom and Wild

Second Quiz night lovely dinner, Millie Cat, Gin and friends. We didn’t distinguish ourselves in the quiz but we weren’t last.

Father’s Day barbecue

More foundation garments which actually fit – the joy of a bra that rounds one up and points everything in the right direction without bruising you is grossly underestimated by those who’ve never acquired bruises courtesy of their underwires.

My lovely Podiatrist dealt with my sore heel.

I’ve taken to baking again – I made delicious saffron scones, then I made coffee and walnut cakes for my colleagues and sweet biscuits with my niece. The baking muse is back.

I’ve booked a small adventure – more on that after the event.

My favourite GP is back at the GP practice after a long absence. He did not dismiss my concerns and made all necessary referrals to resolve the problem.

I don’t have skin cancer – always good that one. I had a lesion that isn’t going away although neither is it doing anything very suspicious but it seemed better to have it checked especially as my godmother has had three small skin cancers removed this year. Luckily they are not life threatening and my lesion is harmless.

My lovely Big niece came to stay we had a movie night…and I watched Paddington for the first time. I confess I loved it.

The next morning, Big niece and I went out for breakfast.

Then there was the unexpected excitement of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child i have tickets for November but a friend unexpectedly had a spare ticket which I was delighted to use so I saw it early with D, S, L, K and B and I’m looking forward to watching it again in November. The deal is that like the Mousetrap you don’t spoil it so I won’t. I will say it was a fabulous experience and Jamie Parker is Harry! I saw part 2 on Friday 24th and it probably says it all that for the duration of the play I forgot the ghastly thing that had happened.

My amazing friends 

Ducklings at my grandmother’s nursing home

Blenheim Palace with H and K. It rained more or less all day. Note to self buy a new raincoat and do not believe the weather forecast and go out without a coat. Happily M&S supplied me with a fleece.

Despite the inclement weather we had a lovely day but I’d like to go back and explore  the gardens in less precipitous conditions. You can’t see much huddled under an umbrella. I recommend the ice cream sundaes though.

We had Dinner at El Shami my favourite restaurant in Oxford. I adore Lebanese.

Then there was a coffee and chocolate cocktail very decadent and alcoholic but delicious.

I won £25 on the lottery always a pleasant surprise.

I was miserable about the referendum result so I spent about £8 on flowers to cheer myself up. I recommend Lidl for flowers.

Finally I received a large cheque from southeastern trains as a refund for the unused portion of my season ticket while I was ill. I didn’t even know it was a thing then one of the medical staff told me if you cannot travel due to illness for at least four consecutive weeks because you are signed off you can claim a partial refund. Sure enough the details are well hidden on their website. I followed their instructions and applied expecting them to find a loophole and avoid paying me . However I received a letter saying I met their criteria as having been ‘severely unwell’ – thank you orthopaedic surgeon for that splendid sick note – and my cheque for six weeks refund would follow and it did!


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