I’d like to take this opportunity, now that everyone has turned their computers off for the next week or two to wish everyone a very Happy Christmas and New Year.
To regular readers of this blog:
Thanks for all your comments, links and for generally joining in since the first (proper) post back in April. Have a great Christmas and I’ll see you in January after a little bit of a break.
To all the people who are looking at this page because I am too
disorganised environmentally friendly to send a real card:
Hello! Just thought I’d send this card drawn by ‘Maddie_C’ (pseudonym) and myself to say have a very Happy Christmas and a splendid New Year.
Newsletter sort of bit: I left my job as a youth worker in Cookham (which I miss very much) in February and have been living in Rayleigh in Essex since then. I now draw cartoons for a living, which I sell via this site as well as doing a regular slot in the Church Times and various freelance work. I generally write a daily piece of in-depth analysis here on this weblog too. Do come back and read, though I’ll be taking most of the next week off as it’s Christmas and that sort of thing. Do click a few links if you’d like to see some of the cartoons I’ve been drawing over the year.
I know it isn’t the done thing to include adverts in a Christmas card, so apologies if some appear below. To make them disappear I’d have to tweak some levers and pulleys and I might break something, so I’m not going to.
Best wishes, Dave.
Posted by Dave at 5:42 pm on December 24, 2005 and filed under Sundry posts.
Well, I managed to get through 24 days of the now complete Advent Calendar blog and have an idea for a cartoon vaguely on time every day. Though the truth of the matter is that at the beginning I was posting 3 or 4 cartoons ahead but by the end was scrabbling at midnight trying to make a scanner work and generally getting in a pickle.
As I have said on the Advent calendar site I did very much appreciate all the comments and e-mails about it – thank you. Sorry that I didn’t reply to each and every comment, much as I would have liked to.
I have posted a full list of the daily windows here in case you missed any.
Posted by Dave at 4:50 pm on December 24, 2005 and filed under CartoonChurch progress, Cartoons.
I’ve just had a chance to take a look at my Christmas Quiz which is a full page feature in this week’s Church Times. Greetings to anyone who has surfed in having followed the half-printed web address (might have been my scanning, I’m not sure). I’m afraid it’s only available to people who have bought the paper or paying Church Times subscribers.
If you have the paper why not cut out the answers and keep them somewhere safe, then give the quiz to the relatives to do when you’re trying to keep them entertained after the Queen’s speech?
Posted by Dave at 4:44 pm on December 24, 2005 and filed under Church, Quizzes and competitions.
The Christmas feature has at last been added to Wibsite.com – Neil chooses a mince pie. Neil sent it to me a week ago but I’ve been overwhelmed with various things and still haven’t done things like sending out Christmas greeting e-mails.
We bought a turkey by the way – thanks to everyone who gave us their in-depth advice. It is 4.2 kilograms. Please feel free to share the weight of your turkey in the comments.
The Christmas music has been playing. My favourites are the Carols from Cookham and the Pogues’ Fairytale of New York. The latter is not on a Christmas Album so we have to have lots of other Pogues songs too which are not really appropriate to Christmas at all.
Posted by Dave at 11:28 pm on December 23, 2005 and filed under Sundry posts.
Did I tell you that I will be having a stall at the Christian Resources Exhibition again next year? It’s the one in Esher, Surrey, from 9 – 12 May 2006. This year I am in the downstairs though, not in the tent bit. I need an idea to make my stall a little different but haven’t thought of it yet. Please do write it in your diary and come and see me if you are within reach.
I see also from ‘Missioners start the week‘ that they are donating (?) space to groups involved in new expressions of mission.
We are sure you will be glad to know that through the generosity of the Christian Resources Exhibition the large Tingle Creek Hall (450sq m) at Sandown Park Esher from 9 – 12 May 2006 will be exclusively devoted to an exhibition of new outreaches in mission – an Exhibition within the main Exhibition.
Posted by Dave at 10:56 pm on December 23, 2005 and filed under Festivals and Exhibitions.
It has been a little quiet here on the blog recently hasn’t it. I’ve been undertaking extensive quantities of preparational Christmas activities as plans have changed and Maddie_C and I are staying in Essex for Christmas rather than touring the motorways of southern England which had previously been our plan. Unfortunately the cat is not well so we are staying here to tend to her merest whim. Sleeping and raw mince are her particular vices.
So this has meant that I’m spending my first Christmas in Essex and we have been out getting lots of the paraphernalia required for undertaking a Christmas day without being at a parent’s house. We now have a tree and some baubles (The catering-size box of baubles I got at a knockdown price at a church sale have been vetoed for their gaudiness).
Which brings me onto the pressing subject of the day. Turkeys. We looked today in the supermarche and they all seemed to have ‘best before’ dates of December the 26th. Is this normal? It’s just that one really wants to be eating turkey leftovers on not only the 26th but also the 27th and perhaps at a stretch the 28th. Does the ‘best before’ date apply to when you need to cook it by or when you need to eat it by? And if we go to the shops tomorrow will the turkeys all have best before dates of the 27th? Or is the 26th some sort of an industry standard? In fact will there be any turkeys left tomorrow or Saturday? I am worried that the pensioners go in at 8am and clear the shelves (no disrespect to pensioners here).
Your help and in-depth advice would be appreciated.
I would like to take a moment to explain to all the people for whom I should have done many things that I have not been able to do all of their many things yet. This is because of delays. Thank you.
Posted by Dave at 11:06 pm on December 22, 2005 and filed under Essex Life, Household hints.
This e-mail has come to my attention (posh way of saying someone sent it to me):
THE FUTURE OF MAKE POVERTY HISTORY – WHAT DO YOU THINK?
At the last Make Poverty History assembly it was clear that some agencies felt the MPH campaign should be looked on as a campaign that has ‘happened’. However, through informal discussion, some of us from TIDAL have found a very strong feeling amongst many organisations and individuals that the Make Poverty History campaign should continue in a modified, sustainable form. We are canvassing opinion to see how widespread this feeling is (see attached document). Please let us know if you and/or your organisation agree with the following statement:
“We believe that the Make Poverty History campaign, name, website and mailing list should continue into 2006 and beyond in a modified and sustainable form”
If you and/or your group/organisation agree, please let Joanna Brown know (email: email@example.com). Your name and/or group name and contact details will then be put on one of the lists in Appendix A of the attached document. Comments in support of this statement are also welcome (the comments will be made public but the name of the person will be kept confidential). The document will then be sent to the MPH Co-ordination Team (Appendix B).
Please circulate as widely as possible to individuals and groups that you think are interested in the future of MAKE POVERTY HISTORY.
On behalf of Mary Keynes, Ben Margolis, Mahmood Messkoub and Bill Phelps from TIDAL
Dr Joanna Brown
TIDAL, JDC Board, MPH New Media Working Group and Leeds Fairtrade City Steering Group
I haven’t read the document in question as I am essentially just a nosey parker rather than an organisation. From what I can gather it looks as if Make Poverty History as a campaign will end at the end of theis year (?) but some of the smaller organisations at least are hoping that it will continue. I don’t know what should happen, all I know is that there has been a lot more going on behind the scenes within the Make Poverty History coalition than has been made public.
There was also a ‘behind the scenes’ programme about the Live8 concert on BBC one tonight. What I saw was quite illuminating. Part 2 is tomorrow I think.
Posted by Dave at 12:40 am on December 21, 2005 and filed under Live8, Make Poverty History.
Whilst we are all no doubt basking in the joys of Advent I feel it is important to take some time to remember our hardworking brethren, the clergy, for whom this is a time of busyness, hecticness* and overactivity. Among my blogosphere wanderings I have noticed various clergy enduring various seasonal scenarios and tinsular** tribulations.
- Big Bulky Anglican expresses his relief that Christingle is over for another year
- Kathryn begins to panic over the crib service
- David Faulkner has a dressing up incident:
I don’t have the deep voice to do the ‘Ho, ho, ho’ routine too convincingly, but it all seemed to go well enough, and I made my cheery exit.
It was then that Jane told me that as I left the trousers had fallen around my ankles. I hasten to add I was fully clothed beneath the costume: otherwise perhaps I would have been alerted to the calamity earlier.
I’m sure there are many other clergy bloggers whom we know and love who are undergoing the trials of the season – let’s take some time to bake them a mince pie, leave a nice comment, offer to preach their Christmas day sermon, etc etc etc.
*You try writing your in-depth internet column late at night. It’s not easy let me tell you.
** See above.
Posted by Dave at 12:52 am on December 20, 2005 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Church.
Maddie_C and I were at an unnamed church this evening. It was in Essex, but that is all I’m prepared to say. It was the 9 lessons and carols. We’d just had the angel appearing to Mary when all eyes turned to the right as flames began to be seen on one of the high window ledges. There were lots of flames already because of the candles, but these were bigger than your usual candle flames. By the time we’d started on the birth of Jesus a stepladder had been obtained from the vestry and the fire extinguished. But the spectacle wasn’t over. No sooner had the angel appeared to the shepherds when two more fires started on an adjacent window ledge and pews had to be moved so that the step ladder could be manoeuvred into position so that the churchwarden could once again ascend to the heights with his special fire putting-out pole. Once the wise men were on their way the drama was past, but many members of the congregation kept glancing up at the candles on the window ledges just to be sure.
The readon for the drama? ‘Oasis’, the soft green material used for flower displays had been used to position a lot (and I mean a lot) of candles on the window ledges. Oasis burns.
If you are a church warden and have surfed in via Google looking for the phrase ‘Is oasis flammable’ or Does oasis burn?’ or ‘Is oasis a good thing to use to support candles during a carol service?’ then you have come to the right place.
DO NOT use oasis to support candles. It will burn and cause a drama. Thank you.
Posted by Dave at 12:47 am on December 19, 2005 and filed under Church, Essex Life.
Kester has some interesting thoughts about Joseph:
He’d brought a pregnant girl with him out of wedlock to the biggest family reunion in years, and frankly that was totally out of order. They appeared to have sheltered in a cave under the house where the animals were kept. This wasn’t generousity on the part of some kindly innkeeper. This was savage neglect on the part of a family who dare not entertain disrepute.
Posted by Dave at 10:59 am on December 18, 2005 and filed under Sundry posts.
Nefertiki on the Wibsite has been inspired by my ‘how to make Christmas cards‘ post and has been making some home made cards. For Christmas 2006.
I was recently aroused to creative action by the “million ideas for making christmas cards” link on home page. I was inspired to make one. After several weeks of hard work with a few pine trees, stars, angels, tough-looking cherubs, and drunken-looking angels with wings and trumpets, all done in collage pasted on water-color painted sky and foreground, with some spaghetti (uncooked) which looked quite effective, I still had not put all that stuff together. Besides the materials were spread out on my kitchen table leaving me a mere corner to prepare and eat meals. (I didn’t mind that last part because I prefer eating off a tray in the living room with the TV blasting.} It’s just not going to happen this year. I feel off the hook somehow now that I have quite a long time to finish that card, and perhaps others, in time for Christmas 2006.
Fantastic. Has anyone else been making cards? Do tell us about it.
I wouldn’t go as far as asking you to send me one of course, as that would just be impolite.
Posted by Dave at 7:12 am on December 17, 2005 and filed under Art.
I have decided that I am going to make my Guide to the UK my life’s work, for the next day or two at least. It is now at number 634 in the rankings – if you were to link to it it might even get up into the mid 400s.
I am currently needing some more ideas for the ‘top benches overlooking the sea’ paragraph. Where are the top benches in the UK overlooking the sea? Be aware though that should you suggest them they could become very popular with people coming from all over the world just to sit on them. There could be queues and everything.
Thanks to Alice for her bench in Swansea. I don’t think I will list another in Swansea otherwise Swansea will become over-popular with people coming from all over the world just to sit on it’s benches. There could be queues and everything.
Posted by Dave at 3:44 pm on December 16, 2005 and filed under In-depth analysis.