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Catching up with many treats


Happy Advent – I know I’m a bit late on that one but it’s been busy Chez Ours. In fact I may have to break this update up a little or Blogger will have a little panic/freeze attack.

Now then, where did we leave off? Last weekend was the first of many Christmassy treats as my Mum and Daddy came up to stay for the weekend bringing appropriate gifts of the season
DNA Scarf 015
(it’s my Christmas pudding). (note to self: microwave is still deceased – how do you think you are going to cook this? Ans: place near candle and wait)

Mum’s present this year is a knitted jacket/cardigan similar to one that a friend has. But what’s that I hear you cry? I said I had finished the Christmas knitting (almost)? Ah ha! This is where the ingenious ingenuity comes in. For Christmas Mum has chosen the yarn and decreed the pattern. For her birthday (in May) she gets the cardigan. 7.5 months and counting (ish). She has chosen a beautiful colour and I’m going to have a lot of fun figuring out a pattern for her – watch this space.

Taking my parents to the source of all wonder and yarn certainly explained why I go cross-eyed and happy and can be found crooning “all the pretty colours” at walls of yarn – I think we might have been making Joseph’s coat if we’d put in a little bit of everything she fancied!

I also led my mother astray in the ways of yarn……

Our first evidence remains unrecorded for posterity and you will have to imagine the picture of Mum only just restraining herself from bouncing up and down with glee while clutching her “new toy” as we finished our errands in town.

Of the formal exhibits I give you Exhibit A:
November 015
a cold, half finished cup of tea (I think), found looking rather lonely.

Exhibit B:
November 012
time: Saturday afternoon

Exhibit C:
November 026
time: Sunday lunchtime

Unfortunately our undercover detective was unable to snap a shot of this fledgling in action but I submit to you (M’Lud) that my mother is now an active sock knitter. Judgment is adjourned to the comments.

All this from a woman who says she has “enough socks” – she has three pairs – no I don’t understand it either.

Dearest Daddy – oops. v sorry. would you like a pair of socks to make up for it?

For our special Christmas (non-knitting) treat we headed into Birmingham to the Frankfurt German Market. The market comes every year and every year it is even bigger – this year it spreads all around Victoria Square, up to the Library and most of the way down New Street.

If you’re looking for picturesque Christmas then you found it – all of the stalls are little chalets like this

and thisAll sorts of shapes and sizes including a Polar Bear (selling Gluebier – mulled beer) and a clove of garlic – selling garlic bread. It is a real mixture of food (yummy) and what I guess you would describe as curios – blue and white pottery, glass and wooden Christmas ornaments, little pottery German houses and jewellery.

In the day it is pretty and at night:it’s MAGICAL!!
It was bitterly cold on Saturday with a stiff breeze to boot so we quickly found the Gluewein stand! German mulled wine has a serious kick to hit and you can literally feel it warming all the way down to your toes! H and I went for the sausage for our nibble – the sausages are cooked on a huge suspended gril over a flame pit – I could never get close enough to take a picture which probably tells you how good the sausages are – and the parents had roast ham and we all sang along to silly Christmas songs and were terribly British when it started to pour with rain (we stood, turned out backs to the rain and continued to drink our gluewein. A bit like penguins. This is afterall a family who spent days on the beach huddled under a towel suspended over a few bits of driftwood just in case the rain stopped, but that’s a whole nother story).

Our final treat was to hear the Dutch Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra play – a wonderful concert in Birmingham Symphony hall which has two major points in its favour:

(a) the acoustics are great – they have flaps and things to move to change the sound depending on who plays there; and

(b) lots and lots of legroom and very comfortable seats.

And the final, and slightly surreal moment of the weekend? Looking up on the train to find three cameras pointed at me (all family members). The occasion?

it seems proof was needed!