Sunday, 28 December 2014

Goodwill to all humans!


I hope you had a splendid Christmas, full of love and warmth. In the run up to Christmas, I just couldn't bear the news some days, it was an endless list of ways people were horrible to other people. It was nice to spend time with loved ones and realise that actually, most people are fundamentally kind and decent, it's just the awful ones who get all the attention. I look at my tree, which is covered with baubles, and remember where they were bought or who gave them to me. Each year we get one or two more; this retro robot is one of a box of three that my husband got me this year, from Paperchase. I'd really wanted them (robots are ace!) but had been really busy at work and hadn't made it that far into town. I even had to go into work on the Saturday before Christmas and was late meeting my husband afterwards, and so he'd gone and got me my robots! He is lovely. And every year I shall unpack my baubles and get a little robotty reminder of how lovely he is.



I didn't get a mass of vintagey things for Christmas. I think we've hit the age where we've mostly got all the things we want. However, Mr Robot gave me a Cath Kidston 'Trains' double duvet set. He does tease me about liking steam trains, and one of the annoying thing about our office move in the autumn was being moved to the side of the building away from the train tracks so I can no longer see them go through. Now I can dream of trains. (And Boycie the cat likes them too...)


One thing I did get lots of is BOOKS! First up, a book of Christmas mysteries. I haven't dipped into it yet, but I really ought to start it before the festive season ends. It's divided into all sorts of categories - I may head straight for the noir ones, though the Golden Age stuff is also begging for attention. However, I haven't started it yet...


...because I cracked open A Game of Battleships, the next adventure in the Space Captain Smith series. (I've already reviewed Space Captain Smith, God-Emperor of Didcot and Wrath of the Lemming Men.) My husband got me the two most recent books so I'm now fully up to date with our bumbling hero's adventures. I'm only a short way into Battleships, but Smith and his crew have already had to go to the planet Europe for ship repairs.


I also got two books from Cherie Priest's steampunk 'Clockwork Century' series from my mother-in-law. I reviewed Fiddlehead fairly recently, and though that's the last in the set, I did say you could read each one as a standalone. I'm very much looking forward to these, which I will read in sequence.


Anyway, I can't sit around waffling on about books as today is BLORPFEST, our annual feast with good friends. I look forward to this as much as I do to Christmas itself. Friends are the family we choose, and I feel immensely grateful that mine are willing to spend a day of their holiday with us. We'd hoped to do suckling pig but couldn't get one small enough to fit in our oven, so it's roast goose again! And on that note, I'd better go and hoover the bathroom before everyone arrives... Stay warm and cosy, and enjoy your holiday!

18 comments :

  1. Nothing beats getting new books, I'm glad to hear your Christmas was a good one. Have a wonderful day of feasting today.

    I nearly bought those robots for myself but resisted. I love Paperchase it's definitely one of my happy places!

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    1. They do make lovely stuff, don't they? I was tempted by the glass camera baubles too.

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  2. I have indeed had a good Christmas, and I hope you have too! And I've spent some delicious time reading, with no great pressure to do anything else, which is always a joy of the holidays. Love your robots. And Boycie too! xxx

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  3. Some of my most memorable Christmases involved the gift of a voucher for books. Being let loose in a bookstore in January...oh, the potential!

    A roast goose is nothing to sneeze at-I'll be over at eight-save me a wing.

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    1. Pete and I only had three things on our wedding list, one of which was book tokens. That was marvellous! We each filled a shopping basket after the wedding.

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  4. I'm not a fan of Xmas but the last few days have been lovely.
    That robot is gorgeous, I'd be happy to have him on display all year round. Have I seen that train print on dresses? I remember admiring one on a girl at a festival last Summer. it is an ace print. Boycie has got great taste.
    Loved Tinker, Tailor. I watched it on the Beeb back in the day and was gripped back then. xxxx

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    1. The train print is on dresses - Cath Kidston does some interesting ones. For AW14 there was a fab one with red London buses and another patterned with retro clocks. I think her stuff is a lot less twee and chintzy than it has a reputation for being!

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  5. I too found the news a bit much in the run up to Christmas, it was so depressing some days!! I love those robot decorations for the tree, and I think you've got some lovely reading material to get stuck in to, I did too and can't wait to curl up in a chair with a cup of festive tea and a crisp new hardback. I'm pleased you had a good Christmas - all the best for 2015! How did the Christmas works party go? I can't remember if you blogged about that, but am catching up on posts a bit as have been out of action for a while. x

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    1. I didn't blog about it - something went wrong with my camera's memory card and I lost the pictures. But it was ace. We started with fizz round the Roman Baths, then moved inside for a hot buffet (including the 'stew in a box' which they sell at the Christmas market, and which has a cult following at work anyway), followed by a magnificent array of pudding 'shots', and an excellent cheese board. One room had a disco, another a live midcentury swing band - no prizes for guessing where I hung out! It was a really good party, and we've had such a hard time at work over the past year that it was nice to do something that made us feel we'd turned a corner and things would be better in 2015.

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  6. Cute robot! Your new books look awesome. I'm reading Space Captain Smith because of your review. I've been wanting to read some Cherie Priest but she rubbed me the wrong way in an interview so I need to separate that from my brain and just dive in.
    Watching the news is almost always a day ruiner. You probably don't get inundated with Kardashians, though - lucky!

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    1. Ah! How are you finding Space Captain Smith? You're the second person that I know I've got reading them. I know what you mean about getting rubbed the wrong way by a writer and not wanting to read their stuff quite as much.

      Thankfully, we don't see quite as much of the Kardashians - mainly Kim, though I suspect Kendall will get more coverage now she's modelling internationally. I guess like it or not, Kim will be an icon of these times.

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  7. How thoughtful of Mr Robot to get you your robots! They're lovely, I'm sure Andy would like those too as he likes those sorts of robots :)

    The Toby Frost books look so much like the covers of the Flashman Papers, I wonder if it's the same artist. I got books too, not so many that I don't know where to start, but I got four over my birthday and Christmas: two Brian Froud ones which I am completely in love with, a Stephen King novel and an autobiography of someone I knew nothing about until I happened across it in the library years ago xxx

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    1. I don't know if it's the same artist, but there is a similarity. Smith isn't as beastly as Flashy, though. More of a bumbling idiot than an out-and-out rotter, and much nicer to the ladies!

      Which Brian Froud ones? I have Good Fairies/Bad Fairies and The Goblins of Labyrinth.

      Maybe you can get Andy some robots for next Christmas!

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    2. The Froud books I got are 'Faeries Tales' and 'How To See Faeries' (I think that's what it's called). I have pretty much all of the Froud books now except 'Trolls' I believe. His artwork makes me so happy, I just love it. The Goblins of Labyrinth was my first.

      I rather like Flashy for all of his flaws and his utter cowardice! I do find them heavy going mind you and am struggling to get started on Flashman at the Charge.

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    3. Oh, that's cool. I shall keep an eye out for 'Trolls'.

      I tend to have my Flashy in small bites. Royal Flash was on Radio over Christmas and I've Tivoed it but have yet to listen to it. I hope they chose a voice that sounds the way I imagine him...

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  8. I do I like your robot decoration, how lovely! I hope you had a great Christmas and enjoyed the festivities with your friends. Great stack of books to go at!

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  9. Mim,
    I have a bit of envyous feeling right now. It's snowing outside, and the winter was always me reading-time.. but, unfortunately I actually have to study. No reading for me - at least not until the exam is over.
    Ahhh.. read something for my sake!

    Marija

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    1. I will definitely enjoy reading! I have to read a lot for freelance work, so it's nice to read purely for myself.

      And as for envy - you have SNOW! How smashing. I envy you that. That said, as soon as more than an inch of snow falls, the south of England grinds to a halt, so it's probably for the best that we haven't had any. You'd think that after thousands of years of inhabiting this island, at least some of the residents would be prepared for winter, but no...

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