Sunday, 21 December 2008

Christmas on the Telly

David Tennant - The Current Doctor Who

Christmas telly is usually the best TV of the year, apart from Children in Need, but that’s just one night. Well it’s a good excuse for watching so much telly and due to the weather there's not much else I fancy doing. Lots of people don't like watching TV but I have to say I've always loved the telly at Christmas. There's something special about it. I'm glad they do make it special because lots of people are on their own and the telly is their only company.

Brit Girl Sarah set me thinking about this when she talked about how the Sound of Music was always shown on the BBC on Christmas Day. I think The Great Escape was usually on the “other side”. Strange that because they’re not Christmas films. It started me thinking about our perceptions of how great Christmas telly used to be “when we were young”. Was it really that good? I think it was, but over time maybe people’s tastes and our expectations have changed.

What do I remember liking?

I loved to see It’s a Wonderful Life. It’s still one of my favourites. I have to say that it’s not the films I look forward to, it’s the Christmas specials.

I used to love watching the Andy Williams Christmas show with the Osmonds. Then there was Morecambe and Wise. Their shows were amazing. Who can forget Angela Rippon, (the BBC’s very sedate newsreader) when she danced with them and showed her fantastic legs in the 1976 show. We never knew she had legs. Morecambe and Wise still hold the record of 28 million viewers on Christmas Day 1997. That was half the UK population!

Then there were The Two Ronnies. We laughed so much at their sketches and their songs. Oh how I miss them. I bet Ronnie Barker has them in stitches now wherever he is.

So what’s on the cards for this year? Well I’ll give the films the go by, nothing much there I fancy. I don’t watch any of the soaps, I want to be entertained not depressed!

So it’s on to the Christmas Specials. They don’t really go in for the variety type shows now, mostly it’s a sitcom type of thing or a drama.
Rab C Nesbitt is back after 10 years! Now this string vested street philosopher wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea but he was mine. Maybe I should say lager! A lot of people couldn’t understand his broad Glaswegian accent but he was great. He and his totally dysfunctional family were quite sad but at the same time hysterically funny. Maybe all great comedy is a bit black. Well I’m looking forward to this one.

The Royle Family, there’s another dysfunctional family who spent most of their lives in front of the telly. They’re back too. They’ve had some brilliant Christmas specials, the one where baby David was born and the last one which was a bit sad when they killed off Nanna.

As Time Goes By is one of my all time favourite comedies with Judy Dench and Geoffrey Palmer. Such witty scripts and wonderful acting. They’re about to become grandparents. Bring it on!

Gavin and Stacey is one series I’ve never seen. I think it must have been shown on one of the other BBC channels. People raved about it and although I really love Rob Brydon and Alison Steadman, I never saw any of the programmes. I’ll take a look at the Christmas special and look out for any repeats of the series if I like it.

Doctor Who also has a Christmas special. Now I’ve always loved Doctor Who, but all my family hate it. My husband never liked it, my children never liked it and now my grandson doesn't. The result is I can't watch it unless it's on another channel late at night. I've watched them all right from the very first one, William Hartnell. I think David Tennant is probably my favourite Doctor, those tennis shoes he wears with a suit, kill me. However he’s announced that he’s leaving the show and there’ll be a new Doctor Who in 2010. Maybe it’s David Morrissey who’s appearing with him as a second Doctor in Victorian England in this Christmas show. Now how can on earth can I manage to see it?

From Larkrise to Candleford is another series I wanted to watch but never got to see. My husband doesn’t like these costume dramas. They have a Christmas special tonight so I bet I don’t get to see it. Unfortunately it clashes with the start of the new series of The Royal, the hospital series set in the sixties. He really likes that one. Why do these TV planners always put really good things on at the same time.

Clash of the Santas is one I won’t miss tonight. I love Robson Greene and Mark Benton and their not so friendly rivalries; so does my husband so we won’t argue over that. It seems like I’ll be watching quite a lot of telly this Christmas. Well short days and long nights and you have to make the most of it,
there probably won't be much on that's worth watching during the rest of the year.

Happy telly watching.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Well It's Beginning to Feel Like Christmas!

What a lovely day I've had today! You don't get many of these to the pound!

Started the day off at 7.15 am with a phone call from my son, Neil. He was letting us know that we have a new grand daughter, Ellen. She was 8 lb 2 ozs and came into the world at 5.30 this morning. Her Mam was getting a bit worried because she was a week overdue and the hospital had told her they might leave her until Christmas Eve. Needless to say she was panicking a bit and worrying about being in hospital on Christmas Day and leaving a 4 year old at home. Problem solved, now we have 3 granddaughters and one grandson.

Next at 10.30 am met my daughter, Claire and went to my granddaughter Lauren's Christmas play, Whoopsy Daisy Angel! A lovely story about a little angel who was messy and always got things wrong. Well, until the day they asked her to let everyone know about the baby Jesus. She didn't mess that up! Brought the tears to your eyes. As the head teacher said, it's hard to believe that they are only between 3 and 4 years old and have only been in school for about 12 weeks. No stage fright, just amazingly confident little performers.

Tomorrow it's the school carol service in church and the Reception Class are performing the traditional nativity play. Lauren's brother's class who are in their final year in Junior School, Year 6 and are the Special Friends of the little ones in Reception, are doing the readings. I must remember the hankies again!

After the play we took Lauren home and had a quick lunch. Next we went to buy presents for the new baby. I have always enjoyed buying lovely clothes for my new grandchildren but today was a real pain. It was the same in all the shops we tried. The shops didn't have much left and some of them were selling the clothes at reduced prices. It was hard to find things that matched. If you could get the dress in the right size, they didn't have the jacket! We eventually managed to find a set, just hope that they like it.

We collected Nathan, Lauren's brother and went home. Then my daughter went off to see to her horse and left me with Nathan & Lauren. I opened the cafe and started to feed them as usual. Next my nephew Glenn who is a golf director at a hotel, arrived with a Christmas present I had ordered for my son in law. Then in came my husband who was in a hurry to go out to a function.


Next my daughter arrived back and we had a coffee together. We had hoped to visit and see the new baby tonight but my son rang to say they were getting out of the hospital at teatime and suggested we put it off until tomorrow. Have to say that although I was a bit disappointed I'm having a lovely relaxing evening on my own with a glass of wine or two, counting my blessings and celebrating a wonderful day. Money can't buy this and God willing, I'll have another lovely day tomorrow.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Nigella's Christmas Kitchen


I heard someone describe Nigella's programme as food porn.

Have to say that after watching her Christmas show tonight I know exactly what they mean. She makes food sound so fabulous and so easy. I like her style!

Will probably have a go at her little Christmas Puddini Truffles. They look scrumptious. Her Triple Cheese and Onion Strata looks great too.

Even if you're not a keen cook, her programme is a great one to watch just for her style. She's gorgeous and not a skinny bird, she likes her food.

If you missed it here it is on the BBC iPlayer again and most of the recipes.

Nigella's Christmas Kitchen

Christmas Getting to Know You

I got tagged by That British Woman. All I did was read her Blog!

So if you're reading this, you're tagged too.


Here's what you're supposed to do. Just change all the answers so that they apply to you. It's not that hard.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? - Wrapping paper.

2. Real tree or Artificial? - Artificial. It’s more environmentally friendly, lasts for years. Love the smell of real trees but I once wrecked a hoover with the needles.

3. When do you put up the tree? - Generally week before Christmas.

4. When do you take the tree down? - Twelfth Night, not a day before!


5. Do you like eggnog? - Have no idea what that is.

6. Favourite gift received as a child? - A real pencil sharpener that fastened to the table from my Nanna & Grandad.

7. Hardest person to buy for? - My daughter in law. I'm going to suggest we don't bother next year.

8. Easiest person to buy for? - Nobody is easy.

9. Do you have a nativity scene? - Is this a crib? If so yes but I don’t put it up at the moment as it’s quite fragile and my grandchildren would wreck it.


10. Mail or email Christmas cards? - Mail.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? - Perfume. Any kind I get from anyone. I keep telling people not to buy it for me but they keep doing it.

12. Favourite Christmas Movie? - I have 3,
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Love Actually and It’s a Wonderful life.

13. When do you start shopping? - About September, then I have a rest until November.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? - Yes I put them in the Charity bags. At least someone will benefit from them.

15. Favourite thing to eat at Christmas? - The same things I eat with Sunday lunch all year round, Yorkshire Pudding and roast potatoes!

16. Lights on the tree? - Does this mean yes or no? If so yes.

17. Favourite Christmas song? Carol - Silent Night. Song - Driving Home for Christmas, Chris Rea.

18, Travel at Christmas or stay home? - Home.

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? - Yes.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? - Angel.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? - Christmas morning.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? - Nothing really.

23. Favourite ornament theme or color? - Gold and silver.

24. Favourite for Christmas dinner? - Salmon, I don’t eat meat.

25. What do you want
for Christmas this year? - Nothing at all, have all I need.

Remembrance Sunday

    By Special Collections Toronto Public Library from Toronto, Canada (In Flanders' Fields) In Flanders fields the poppies blo...