Adventures & Insights

One man's adventures in the physical and intellectual worlds…

Tag Archives: family

On The Twelfth Day Of Christmas

Forrest Gump’s mother obviously wasn’t paying attention when comparing life to a box of chocolates. Either that or she never gave or received a box of Roses chocolates. They come with a menu, which means that you can choose the bits you like and avoid the ones you don’t. Or you can share them with someone else – who may like the ones you don’t, which is even better.

Don't like peppermint? Give me the ones with the green wrapper. Easy.

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On The Eleventh Day Of Christmas

Sometimes it’s impossible to be with your loved ones at Christmas time. Life is a complex creature and for many reasons, this holiday holds no significance to some people. If my last ten posts had you gagging on my disgustingly open-hearted love for the Season then this one might help you relax. If we find ourselves with some time off at the end of December and we have no other plans, I find that movies are a good way to pass the time if you don’t already have plans. Accordingly, whilst you may believe that Christmas movies are all sappy sentiments and lessons about forgiveness, sharing and caring – well, you’re only 80% correct.

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On The Tenth Day Of Christmas

I’m the kind of guy that department stores love at this time of year. One of the many people who starts their Christmas shopping in late November and still doesn’t buy anything until mid-December. The months between January and November have somehow been filled with birthdays, engagements, work and so many other things that push Christmas shopping to the very back of my mind, so I’m a veryy last-minute kind of guy when it omes to Christmas shopping.

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On The Ninth Day Of Christmas

When I was a kid, Christmas was mostly about the presents. It was even better that for many years I didn’t have to give anyone gifts – except for the “gifts” that we handcrafted during December at school (you know the ones; the lop-sided mug we made out of clay for example, painted in gaudy colours and one that would never be used as a drinking utensil because it’s very possible that the drinker will become sick so instead it’s used as a pen or pencil holder for a while.) The ones that came with handmade Christmas Cards that showed our parents that we were still learning to write and draw (and, in some cases, to use glue) but that we already knew how much we loved them. Yep, for many years, Christmas was a cakewalk for me.

Nowadays, things are a little different.

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On The Eighth Day Of Christmas

Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock...

Christmas Carols. A point of contention for many during this holiday season. Some (like yours truly) enjoy the festive tunes for the most part, feeling that they help define a joyous occasion and identify with the spirit of goodwill that most of the songs inspire. Others find them grating and would rather listen to Justin Bieber or Right Said Fred (or even listen to the soundtrack to the remake of Mamma Mia! starring Pierce Brosnan) rather than hear anyone singing a Christmas Carol.

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On The Seventh Day Of Christmas

Recently I’ve started dieting and getting more exercise in a concerted effort to make some changes in my life. The good days are beginning to heavily outweigh the bad and I’m beginning to see the results of my not so hard work. I’m quite proud of myself, but I am wondering whether I should fast this week in preparation for what I will be facing on Christmas Day…

It's not exactly my house - but you get the idea.

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On The Sixth Day Of Christmas

I won’t deny it – as a child, the best thing I knew about Christmas was the presents. Every year we dressed the house, trimmed the tree and got our Christmas season off to a great start. Being brought up with two differing religious opinions meant that the true meaning of Christmas was present but not overwhelming. Our family has always been one where personal choice reigns supreme; we support each other in the way we choose to live our lives and while we share opinions openly, we never try to force each other (or anyone else) to change their opinion or approach to suit our own (even when we ARE correct…).

And so each year passed in a similar fashion; I tried to be good, failed on numerous occasions and succeeded on others. I tried new things, found new interests, disinterests, strengths and weaknesses. And at Christmas time came the decision-making. Would it be a request for a puppy? The latest Star Wars action figure or A-Team lunchbox? Some calligraphy pens and ink or a book that would teach me how to draw dinosaurs and cartoons? Had I been good enough to earn a cassette player or clock-radio? Only Santa knew for sure. Every year was a lottery, and some years were jackpots!

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On The Fifth Day Of Christmas

Ah, the holidays. You know I love my family and friends tremendously and they’re always at the top of my list of important things in life. You also know that I love Christmas, both for its religious significance and for the underlying “be nice to each other” theme. But there’s another reason I love Christmas. A simple, selfish reason that I’m pretty sure even the grinchiest Christmas Humbugs can drink to. Three simple words that will make even the stoniest heart fill with happiness and bring tears to many an eye.

Image borrowed from Shauna Younge's blog - Sweet Tooth

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On The Fourth Day Of Christmas

I love flying. Being someone who doesn’t have to travel often for work, almost all of my flights are for pure pleasure. I find the airport to be an exciting place; full of travellers coming and going, beginning and ending their adventures. Familes and lovers reunited happily or saying tearful goodbyes (hopefully not forever!) as well as those flying veterans who know some of the coffee shop attendants by name and who don’t have to tell them what kind of coffee they’d like to sip as they read the latest issue of the financial review while waiting for their next business flight.

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On The Third Day Of Christmas

Apart from the obvious religious significance, Christmas is about sharing and caring – if you need to dedicate a specific time period to it. I know that most of us try to carry the sentiment through the year, even if we take down the decorations the week after. Christmas has always been a time when I’m reminded of the great capacity we all have to be kind, generous and considerate to others.

As we “grow up”, our responsibilities and experiences can lead us to lose sight of some of the really important things in life. The commercialisation of Christmas has caused the season particular damage and many of us see it as a time of great stress rather than the joyful season it is meant to be. Even I, with my abundant Christmas spirit, have groaned in despair when seeing Christmas decorations appearing in stores – in August.

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