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JPR Archive

June 1, 2011
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Archives… 2008-2002

Time flies…

Monday, 8 December 2008

Well time flies when you’re having fun! Em and I are well, if a little tattered around the edges.

The little ladies keep us on our toes and Emma especially deserves a medal for keeping it all together.

Abbie J. is 3 and a half now and in Jan has a 5th day making 5 mornings a week at pre-school ‘Bizzy Bees’. She seems to enjoy it a lot.

Phoebe T. is 1 and a half now and has just started walking and is really finding her feet in more than one way!

Seeing the girls play (and not-so-play) together is a joy and also seeing their many differences is refreshing. AJ is quite expressive and enjoys singing, dancing and drawing etc. she considers everything she comes across. PT is more dreamy and she’s her own boss and will do what and when she wants – but when she decides, she gives as good as she gets.

So much has happened (grown) over the last year I would know where to start to tell.

I think having ‘little ones’ gives life a new momentum that just carries you along – no longer can everything be considered, deliberated and ruminated on. In 3 years we’ve gone from ‘just the two of us’ to a household of four, with all the incidents and attachments, the groans, grimaces, joy and hilarity… as was once said “life IS bigger”. (messier, louder, pinker, warmer, and bigger!)

Twinkle Twinkle

…how I wonder…

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Twinkle, twinkle, little star…  I should get out more.

My 2 year old daughter gazes out of the window and runs over to me with yet another observation. My 6 month old daughter sits looking contentedly knowing that sustenance is not far away. ‘Joy’ and ‘shine’ – their names remind me of more than is immediately evident. A low winter sun struggles through the cold capillary-like copse outside the window.

I know that the interaction between things and people is what makes the world go around, however, through my daily routine and the weekly customs, I have occasionally found it more difficult to absorb a shared meaningful Good in things. I should get out more.

Now and again I do glimpse a sense of “the bigger picture”, a fabulous spirit, that can under-pin our being, but it’s not always easy to justify. I guess, we can be in a position to see life, energy, the sun and creation – and we can be in a position to see decay, confusion, storm and destruction. Indeed, we can see both of these in the same situation. So how can we celebrate ‘Good’ in life?  I should get out more, and so I’m off for a pint.

Aside from a good pint and a good old blether with friends…

I find that music, images and other reflections invaluable* – Glimpses from people attempting to strain truth from superstitious, mercantile, blinding traditions that make up our culture. Extraordinary ‘moments of value’, that see beyond the ordinary trappings of society.

Let’s all see more in things!  Twinkle, twinkle, little star…

Jules.

*For example:

I am reminded by Bugge Wesseltoft’s music of a delectate beauty of “everyday life”.

The multitude of images captured by ‘Flickr’ devotees, encapsulate unique flickers of living.

Words on the page from, for example Blake Morrison, reflect on life (and death) of moments.

Recently watched films such as; “Snowcake”, “Amazing Grace”, “The Namesake” and “The Prestige”, present ideas that wake the senses.

For me, there are so many moments captured in “music” (especially live music) that strip the confusion from the fabulous.

Many of these creations are hidden behind a smorgasbord of tripe that is alas “a la carte”.

Life is bigger – Let’s see more. Twinkle, twinkle, little star…

And thanks to friends for the blether!

Little Ladies – Oct. ’07

Saturday, 27 October 2007

Abbie Jemma is now 27 months, where those months have gone, I don’t know, but what I do know is that Abbie is changing all the time, she is chatting and singing away constantly, we have conversations about all sorts, she is a lively and a wonderful little girl, she is also always making us laugh about something or other.  Abbie loves to sing “Twinkle, twinkle little star”, and melts mine and her Dad’s heart every time she sings it, she also loves to sing “Dingle dangle scarecrow”.

Abbie started Bizzy Bees pre-school in September, she has settle in well, and enjoys going. She comes home singing the days of the week, she sings “it’s Monday today”, and claps her hands, we have to explain that it’s not always Monday, but we are getting there. She loves to draw or paint a picture, our conservatory is now a little art gallery of a lot of her work.

Just before the half term break Bizzy Bees did their Harvest Festival, Abbie took part in singing all the songs, and even took a painted green pear up to the front to be one green pear hanging on a tree!

This last week has been the half term break and I took the opportunity to have a go at potty training AJ, she has taken to it really well, had a few accidents to start with but now a week later she goes and pees on her potty all by herself. We haven’t mastered the number 2’s yet, but that will come in time. She’s our little superstar.  Abbie loves her little sister Phoebe Tegen, she loves to kiss and cuddle her and help me where possible like changing her nappy, Abbie hands me the wipes and the nappy. She is a little mother to Phoebe.

Abbie also loves to copy me, when I feed Phoebe, she feeds her Fuzz bear or her baby.

Abbie and Daddy have cut out a pumpkin this morning to make a smiley face, I’m not sure who had the most fun!

Abbie loves to see her friends and play with them, she is just full energy, wears me and her Daddy out, but we wouldn’t change it for the world.

Phoebe Tegen is 4.5 months old, she too is growing fast and changing daily. Phoebe is being weaned at the moment, she is getting there, beginning to enjoy and get the hang of feeding from a spoon, she loves her baby porridge, apple and pear, carrot and parsnip.

We get some wonderful smiles and chuckles from Phoebe now, we’re finding her ticklish spots – her ribs, under her arms and the tops of her legs!

Phoebe holds her head up well and grasps her toys strongly. She is so aware of everything, she’s becoming a little joy.

Phoebe has found her left thumb, she enjoys sucking on that, it helps calm her down – her comforter, along with a snuggle. (A muslin cloth) and Mummy!

We are settling into a routine now. Life is becoming easier for Phoebe and us.

Phoebe now sleeps through the night, so I’m now beginning to feel like a human being again!

Phoebe loves to watch her big sister Abbie, I think Phoebe wants to be up running about with AJ, I think that’s why she can cry a lot and gets frustrated because she wants to be up playing with Abs. I’m sure it won’t be long before Phoebe will be moving around and following Abs all over the place.

Phoebe loves to be held by me, and is always looking for me, she follows me around the room. We put Phoebe in her bouncer, she is still a little unsure, but again is getting the hang of it.

Our little babies are growing up fast.

Time flies while you’re waking 4 times a night to sort out the little ladies!

Monday, 1 October 2007

But yes having fun! Em and I are tired as… !

Phoebe is good & mostly just waking once a night.

AJ is Two-and-a-bit, and finding her feet & place in things. She’s had a virus and we’ve seen a fortnight of very sleepless nights – but things are settling down.

AJ has started Playschool two mornings a week which means she’s a ‘big girl’ – she loves it.

Phoebs is becoming Phoebs! more than just the new baby. She is as much a joy as Abs but soooo different.

Two great little ladies.

V. Chuffed!

J&E….  sniff sniff pass the Beechams!

Time flies by and…

Monday, 13 August 2007

Time flies by and i really don’t know how everyone seems to have time to stay up-to-date online. We recently discovered the joys(?) of Facebook and it seems that everyone’s doing it. ?  Anyway all’s well here and Em and I are doing OK – knackered but fine. Em is really doing great…juggling Phoebs and AJ is an art and requires the patience of a saint. PT is pretty good at the mo but it’s still hard work with AJ demanding attention left right and ctr. Tiredness aside – it’s GREAT, AJ us growing so fast leaning words like you wouldn’t believe and starting pre-school next month! Phoebs is growing too, now starting the coo coo ga ga stage!

Happie days! J,E,A & P.

Time Present and Time Past are both perhaps present in Tme Future

19th September 2006

Time flies when you’re having fun…

AJ is now toddling all over the place and we have to have eyes in the back of our heads. Hummmm…

Many things going on, stuff happening just dont get time to record things lately.

Few vids on the i-disc above.

Happy days.

Jules Em and Ab.

***********************************************

19th June 2006

Well we’ve been through a bout of Chick Pox, AJ didn’t even know she had it, just not nice to look at.

Had some changes in routine, sleeing, feeding, etc.

Mrs Mooch is becominga little toddler – now zooming around the floor in her own unique style and we’re looking for eyes in the back of our heads. (see her on the i-disc above)

Perspectives changing.

Priorities re-focusing.

Life…

Well what can you say?

Life is just happening – not in the way you see on TV, hear on the radio, read in magazines, study at university or philosophise about over a beer down the pub… but in a more real way…

AJ is 1 a few weeks.

Ju had his first Father’s Day last week.

Em is Mummy, best friend, teacher, police woman, cook, and all theother things that are called upon. (She’s a star!)

Happy days.

Jules Em and Ab.

***********************************************

19th Feb 2006

Marmitie Toast Fingers are the latest proud achievement and more presence than fun at the fair see Em and I totally consumed by AJ and her becoming.

Things are good. AJ is 7 months and of course still changing weekly. She’s still not rolling or crawling but sitting up well – we’re expecting her to jump the crawl stage and start climbing and tottering. DIY has been one of our only distractions from little mooch, the lounge now has the long overdue new paint and the conny is coming on well. Yes there are many concerns but hey that’s life and somehow we’ll deal with that but generally things are good.

We find our selves regularly covered in dribble and mush, ignoring a dim enduring head & backache, repeatedly giggling at one of ‘those looks’ that just make you soften, smile, sigh and say “I’m going to have some marmite fingers!”

Happy days.

Jules Em and Ab.

**********************************************

6th January 2006

Hallo All,

Hope ‘stuff’ is good with you?

Best wishes for the coming Year!

Things are good with us – after a Christmas with the folks in

Kernow and of course 1st Chrimble with AJ, we feel somewhat

refreshed. Spending time with the little one seems to burnish

the edges off one. Life is about happenings and creations, as

well as ideas and notions… blah blah blah…

If you’re passing the much forgotten Shire of Leicester (NE) do gi’s a shout!

Be great to see ya and swap notes!

Love to all,

Jules, Emma & Abbie Jemma.

**********************************************

1st November 2005

Hallo All – things are well with us…

I (Jules) have just finished ‘The Long Way Round’, the book of Ewan McGregor & Charley Boorman’s trip round the world on motorbikes. I also caught most of the TV series on Sky Travel. What an adventure! Their honesty and humility made the experience of reading about it all the more ‘real’.

Also read ‘…Dog in the night time’ – interesting experience, but not as good as ‘If nobody speaks of remarkable things’ – Jon McGregor!

I Recently had the feeling that the wind changed, suddenly one evening – like in the story-books when ‘the wind changes’ and ‘things happen’. I don’t know why, but the vista now seems (again) to have a slightly new hue. It coincides with the clocks going back, when the strange polemic of dark and light seems to become all the more intense. At this time of year my Sunday evening feeling of ‘weary wonderment’ becomes more magical and I must say ‘a reality’ seems more tangible.

I know it’s a cliché but sometimes I think it’s healthy to just let the wind blow and celebrate (or at least go with) it. There’s a lot of unknowns in this life – If we constantly stop at every ‘what if’, well…

As HHF sang “…Some people jive when they hear music start, others just kneel…”

As Leicester City celebrates Diwalli at this time, I agree – ‘Let the light shine’ and let us remember ‘we are’, and not to let the darkness of the indefinite get the better of us.

I (Jules) thank God for my wife, and our daughter – Abbie Jemma, who lights up our day (and night) with every smile and scream.

Love to all – Jules, Emma & Abbie Jemma.

******************************

4th September 2005

Hello all – naturally it’s baby news that’s filling our days at the mo. –

Baby Abbie was 8 weeks old last Friday.

What a few months – All’s well with the Richards Family – Mum & Dad are coming to terms with the fact that baby Abbie is gorgeous and can do no wrong! Even at 3 in the morning when she can scream the house down it seems the next morning all’s forgiven. To be honest that’s only happened thrice. At the mo AJ is v well behaved.

Em & I are learning new things daily not just about baby Abbie but about life, the universe and ‘stuff’… I’ve never experienced myself growing like I’ve felt myself growing over the last few weeks.

Pics & movies on the i-disc page above if you’re interested.

Happy Days (not to mention Nappy Doos!) all,

Jules, Emma & Abbie

*******************************

Friday July 8th 2005 – AJR was born

From sickening anxiety to utter exaustion.

From worry and concern to an awesome moment…

A new chapter… Words fail me.

Emma gave birth to Abbie Jemma Richards at 11.40 today and St Mary’s Hospital in Melton Mobray. Emma succeeded in using Active Birth methods to produce little Abbie. Unfortunately the placenta wouldnt detach and she and baby had to be abulanced to Leic General Osy and have a small op. Without goin into deatil – it has been a draining time for all involved. But Abbie is beautiful!

<<< Check out the pics.

Happy Days indeed – Jules, Emma and Abbie.

*******************************

JULY 2005

Hallo y’all

Before I’m lost for words and my perception is blurred by events out of my control I thought I’d prattle some.

I was looking back a past utterances of a few years back and my how life moves on!

We are all well. Em has a bump like a prize winning melon which along with it’s kicking & dancing is baby tigger’s first impression on our life. We have warmly welcomed the bump however Em’s wardrobe has been ‘limited’ to say the least for a few months. We have a modest collection of ‘what we should have’ ready in the newly decorated ex-computer room, sorry nursery. Tiggs first nights will be in the same Moses basket (reconditioned a tad) that I used in 1968 – That will have been Me, Jason, Joanne, Andrew, Graham, Emily, Evan and soon to be Tigger. Emma was due to de-bump last Friday 24th June, however tigs will come when he/she is good and ready, I keep being reliably informed.

As mentioned before, we are booked into St Mary’s Natural Birth Centre in Melton.

We’ve had a few trips ti Leicester General but all’s on track for an Active Birth at St Marys.

We are now firmly established at Meadow View and love it here.

We have a ‘roaming band’ of squirrels that raid from the woods directly behind the house, leaving a mere sampling of what went before for the usual variety of birds that visit – we had a Song Thrush in the bird bath last month, which is the first time I’ve seen one for ages (in Cornwall they were common place).

Amongst other things ‘Life’ over the last 6 months has consisted of tending the bump and preparing for more…

In the spring we had a little break away in The Lakes, which was great, and our next break will be later in the year down in South Devon.

The next few months will be… (I’m assured).

Watch this space…

Hope all is good with you.

Happy Days,

Jules & Emma.

*******************************

MAY 2005

Hi y’all,

Well 8 weeks to go ’til us two may become three.

We’re sitting listening to Whistling Bob and Tigger is kicking Em.

Matt & Sophie have had Harry, Pete & Sam have had little Rosanna.

Rachel & Simon have had Charlie, Vidge and Dave have had TillyÉ

It’s all happening!

Em and I are soaking up the plentiful edification and with

heads in Active Birth and Contented Baby books.

We are booked with into St Mary’s Natural Birth Centre and doing the initiationÉ

Apart from the imminence of little ‘Tigger’, life is normal and good.

Music of the moment – Bugge Wessteltoft ‘moving’ – nice.

Film of the moment – ‘Shall we dance’ was nice as was ‘Wimbledon’.

Book of the moment – baby books have taken over, sorry, must get something else – any ideas?

TV of the moment – ‘Grand Designs’ is back, whoopee!

Biscuit of the moment – Grasmere Gingerbread, yum!

Hope all is good with you.

Bestest Wishes,

Jules & Emma.

***********************

March 2005

Hello all,

not much to say really… it seems my days of wittering on to myself about life the universe and everything have taken a breather.

My waking hours are absorbed in thoughts of, and dealing with, the anticipation of little ‘tigger’, and enjoying the wonders

of the blooming that Emma is going through.

My as ever we turn a corner, see a new landscape and our assumptions are re-evaluated and motives reconsidered.

As I say I don’t have much to say because many of my thoughts are on the cusp

of combustion either creating new possibilities or pruning straggling tendrils.

Em & I have been busy here and there and hope to trip to see the Kernoians in a few weeks.

Anyhow… March waits charged with a possible spring… we’ll see what’s released.

Just finished Sting’s Biography ‘Broken Music’… not bad.

Any good reads anyone?

Do get in touch if you have any wizz of Wordom.

Happy Doos,

Jules & Emma.

************************

January 2005

Hello all,

Well we’re well into Jan – weve emerged from the vivid anxious retreat and

comfort of the Chrismas Season back into hyper-reality that is ‘every-day life’.

Is a spinning-top more of a spinning-top when it’s spinning or

is it more real when it’s still, on the playroom floor?

Perhaps we we’re made to spin? Whoa neddy, there I go again?

Anyway… the Mac on which I whitter is now to be displaced to the spare room, as this room is to be “baby’s room”. Many thoughts are now displaced with things ‘mothercare’ and the like. Life is new. I won’t go on except to say Em & I are very excited (along with all the anxiety, awareness & aprehension that perhaps goes with true excitment) – Something like climbing a long misty lakeland hill in the warm rain wondering at the awsomness of nature and then getting to the top and looking down at miles and miles of lush green grassland, rivers and forests and the sun shining on a new destination – I’ve been reading to much ‘Wilber S’.

Anyway here goes 2005, as Matt H. put it ‘possibly our most creative venture yet’.

Our thought’s are of Pete & Sam, Matt & Sophie, Vidge & Dave, Rachel & Simon and others who are also in similar positions to us and also Dan & Vicky who are a few steps ahead with little Lahana. Happy Days!

Em & I wish you all the best for the coming year and as ever –

if you’re pasing through Leicestershire, Gis a call!

Jules & Emma

Send us your thoughts! We’d love to hear from any of you…

…interaction between things is what makes them… fruitful..

***********************

December 2004

Well the festival of Saturn is upon us. Ding Dong Merrily and Buy Two Get One Free.

Bring a little light in to the grey, keep a warmth going through the chill, and Hope.

Em and I are well. As is the little one (for it’s age it’s lively & ‘OK’).

Em had a scan at 12 weeks and OK so far – I never expected the little thing to be dancing.

The essence of creation; life; fruitfulness; is good.

Christmas… well we can celebrate the good in ‘life’; whatever ensues; it may be brief, small or indeed grow to an overpowering grace. We can celebrate and encourage the simple things that enhance and feed our world. Somehow the strangling ‘bad’ that taints, stains and indeed kills will be quenched by a greater ‘good’ that will hopefully allways emerge from the tangle?

Book just read: ‘If nobody speaks of remarkable things’ – Jon McGregor – Worth a read!!(?)

We hope you have a colourful Christmas and a sun, the rain, culture, people, smilers, moaners, hope, love, cheese, leaves, chocolate, potential, wine, music, birds, lights, shadows, old friends…

Ding Dong Merrily!

Send us your thoughts! We’d love to hear from any of you…

…interaction between things is what makes them… fruitful…

**********************

November 2004

Life goes on, things come and go… the last few months have been good and

all’s relativly well in our pocket of the shire.

After an evening in taking in the opinions and observations

of ‘Farenhiet 9/11’, as many others, I was left a tad lost in space.

I awoke to listen to the celebration of John Peel’s broadcasting career on Radio 4.

I sat looking out into the garden that has become a damp fall of summer past; through the urburrn tangle; the white beards of the Great Tits flashed into view and soon the feast that was occuring amongst the fruity fester outside was a pleasant grounding, back down to earth. Bryher our budgie flewonto my head and made his way to my neck and started to peck at flavoursome (I assume) folicles, at which I awoke from my silent musing solilique – ouch.

The pig-picture that can seem and is such a tangled evil mess, is one view of what we have, and needs attention – thankfully there are many small-pictures that also make up our world and equally need our attention.

Stimulating news – Emma is pregnant and next year hopefully there could be three of us (four including Bryher, as his peircing rictus so popinjay-ically reminds me). Our thoughts go out to S&M and S&P who are also in a similar position; exciting. (Incidentally the Guppy family have just produced half a dozen struggling fry.)

The essence of creation; life; fruitfulness; is good. We can celebrate the good in ‘life’; whatever ensues; it may be brief, small or indeed grow to an overpowering grace. We can celebrate and encourage the simple things that enhance and feed our world. Somehow the strangling ‘bad’ that taints, stains and indeed kills will be quenched by a greater ‘good’ that will hopefully allways emerge from the tangle.

‘Happy days!’

Send me your thoughts! We’d love to hear from any of you…

*********************

September 2004

Stuff comes and stuff goes.

This week we looked back at the events of April (with Steve’s Video) and realised what a fantasic time it was.

I wish the same happiness to you all.

What made the thing so special was “y’all”, those that came and those that wished us well. Ta tonnes again!

I hope you have-had/are-having a good summer.

Em & I are well and looking forward to a break away later in September, but for now enjoying everyday ‘stuff’.

Thoughts still about; ‘difference’, ‘community’, ‘reality’, and ‘oat cakes’!

Happy days all!

*********************

July 2004

Hi all, and so here we are and ‘summer’ what summer? What you doing this summer?

Life is still good, yes unfortunately the Budgie died, followed closely by old ’Scissor Tail’, cest la vie, life goes on.

Courtesy of Sheila & Tony we have a new feathered friend, ‘Bryher’ a gorgeous silvery-grey-with-a-hint-of-blue budgie (9 weeks old, smuggled up from Kernow). We also have aquired two rummy-noses; small tetras with red noses. Crazy cat fish is off-colour now, (I just think he’s being a grump ‘cos he’s old).

The two Bauhina Variegata are flourishing (I think) – repotted again – still inside.

Summer will be back in August when we have a week off. We also have a week off in September when we will be off to Tunisia for a week. Tad excited about this – sun, souqs, madinas and camels.

Wondering about the nature of ‘community’, ‘hope’, ‘difference’ and ‘why nobody else seems to give a damn’, but that’s my problem.

Nothing more of note really; the ale’s still good; it’s wonderfull to be living in the big Garden that is England (before the government destroy it beyond recognition); miss the sea still but the sky’s still blue; ‘people!’ what would we do without them?; The stew* smells great, must go now…

Ju’s Book of the moment still Bill Bryson’s ‘Notes from a small country’ – laugh, I’ve nearly wet my self. Looking to read ‘Chocolat’ as soon as Em’s finished with it, and also still going with ‘Hell Bay’

Em’s Book of the moment 100 Wisdom Stories by Margaret Silf.

Ju’s Flick of the moment – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind great . SpidermanII good too.

Em’s Flick of the moment – Shrek2 good for a laugh.

Ju’s TV of the moment – well… hummm.. It’s crap isn’t it possibly anything that stretches the old assumptions is worth watching.

Em’s TV of the moment – hummm…

Ju’s Dish of the moment fish or steak with stilton or cheese and anythingÉ

*Em’s Dish of the moment – stew and dumplings for dinner tonight.

Ju’s Ailment of the moment – dodgy eyelid almost gone, brain still overheating occasionally.

Em’s Ailment of the moment – nothing! in perfect health. (dodgy husband)

Ju’s Music of the moment – Late Junction Radio 4 – but still open to suggestions.

Em’s Music of the moment – anything easy going…

Ju’s Thoughts of the moment – Difference, community and Bulgaria.

Em’s Thoughts of the moment – they’re a secret.

Ju’s Joke of the moment – about a steering wheel and a pirate (if you don’t count the one about the carrot and hooba hooba bird)

Em’s Joke of the moment – her husband.

Still getting my head around this .Mac, it’s great. PC-yes but argh! eMac-yippie!

Anywho, stay in touch, and if you’re passing The Shire, please gis a shout!!!

Best wishes,

Jules & Emma

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

June 2004

Well hello everyone…

Last time I scribbled a few words on the website was after the wedding and stuff. It’s now a few months down the liine and ‘stuff’ is still good. Em and I are well as are the fish (Crazy Cat, the Harlequins, The Barb Twins, Molly, the Penquin Clan, and The Rummy Noses – Scissor Tail died.), and unfortunatley Crush the budge is no longer with us. Em’s settled into her new job and is enjoying all that that entails including proper weekends off and a normal 8am starts; so am I.

Pete and Sam are off in Bulgaria and our thoughs are with them and the difficult situation thay find themselves in – it helps us put our concerns into perspective.

Summer is here; however as I type we’ve had a day of rain and the storm clouds are charging overhead; the garden is looking good and the tomatoes are on schedule. I have two new ickle projects that I’ve nurtured from seeds – two Bauhina Variegata plants. If anyone has any tips for these, I’d greatly appreciate them. From what I can gather, it’s an exotic tropical orchid flowing tree. I think I need to invest in a green-house or summint.

This new website has been hastily constructed as part of a very steep learning curve that is ‘getting my head around my neweMac’. For the techies out there I’m using ‘Freeway’ which at such a modest price is a pretty good piece of software. The Mac is fantastic; I just need time to sit and exploer it. The different audio visual utilities are somethig else. I won’t bore you.

Stay safe but seek more (perhaps from less), and AGAIN if you’re passing the Shire that is Leics. Gi’s a bell and drop in for a wet!

Book of the moment – Bill Bryson’s Notes from a small country – laugh, I’ve nearly wet my self.

Flick of the moment – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – great.

TV of the moment – well… there’s the small matter of the Footie..

Dish of the moment – Chilli Crab Linguini.

ailment of the moment – dodgy eyelid.

Music of the moment – Late Junction Radio 4 – but open to suggestions.

Thoughts of the moment – Difference, community and Bulgaria.

Joke of the moment – about a pirate and a steering wheel.

Jules & Emma

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

April 2004

Well what can I say but what a fantastic wedding day/week! Thank you to you all; everyone involved made the day into something that ‘my wife and I’ will never forget. Em & I had a fantastic fortnight.

Two weeks later we are just coming down to earth (I think?).

We had a fabulous break on Bryher one of the smaller islands of the Scilly Isles. We took the ‘copter over and stayed at ‘Hell Bay’ (not so hellish in spring). It was breath takingly chilled and we were lucky with great weather. A few days in the County of tin and pilchards and then back up to The Shire.

To you all, we thank you all so much for a being part of what was a fabulous day! Whether you we’re at the service, the shin-dig in the evening, or simply sent good wishes, every thought was appreciated! The sharing of food, drink and ‘things’ (plenty of wine in some cases) is something that cannot be beaten ? it was great to see people that Em & I have known for so long sharing things with others that they have never met! I suppose in times gone by, families and friends got-together more often and did indeed make a celebration of whatever was current at the time, be it a new couple, a new moon, a feast day, ‘happy days’ or old friends. We should do this type of thing more often.

I won’t go on except to sayÉ I think the event and all that surrounded it has been a catalyst to a paradigm-shift, or if that’s too strong then perhaps a ‘spring-like blooming’ in my thinking and feeling. Not worrying whether ‘a vegetable can be part of a fruit salad’, but celebrating(!) fruit and vegetables and salad and ‘stuff’ is the way forward. It enhances ones experience ‘to know’, but I suggest to feel, enjoy and immerse oneself in the journey maybe a better way forward. The interaction between things is indeed what makes them.

So until we meet again, keep in-touch and let us know when your happy (or not so happy) days are!

Yours nest-building,

Jules & Em

April 2004

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

February 2004

Hello you! Well February is passing by and the shoots & buds are breaking through already!

Those of you that ‘obtained’ a bottle of our Elderberry Wine have been warned, and I hope you’ve got to it, before it got to you ? It still seems to be still fermenting and may blow at any moment (OhÉ & it seems to be a tad ‘not nice’ too). Any whoÉ good fun, and OK as a ‘4th bottle of the eve’.

The plans for the Connubial Celebrations are in place and we’ll be horning a merry pike (or what ever the shed skippers do) in April.

East Goscote, or ‘Goscote’ as it’s known to the aborigines, is nice. Meadow View is even nicer. We’ve still to venture into the heart of the EG parish, not sure it has much to offer, I think Syston will still be the nearest highway to heaven and ‘stuff’.

We have continued the ‘Bath Street’ tradition of feeding the birds, however 5 squirrels have made permanent residence in the garden. We now have a new bird-table (pole smeared in grease) and the squirrels don’t venture further than the end of the garden (so far). Amongst others, we have Robins, Tits, Finches, Doves, and a ‘blasted keep you awake at night’ Owl. The fish are fine, Fergal survived his barrel rolling incident (long story). Which reminds me ? there’s a new pic of Emma parachuting in Oz is on the pics page if you’re interested.

Em and I are well, Em is endeavoring to escape the clutches of Royal Mail and I’m endeavoringÉ as previously.

Looking forward to the Spring and the CC’s in April, and the honeymoon (that’s a secret).

Moved on to Wilbur Smith’s ‘When the Lion Roars’ but a dip into Roger-Pol Droit’s ‘101 Experiments in the Philosophy of Everyday Life’ keeps me ticking. Oh and of course ‘Eats, Shoots & Leaves’ is a must read.

Katie Melua’s ‘Call off the search’ is a treat, as is Nora Jones’ ‘feels like home’. I must get Kate Rusby’s new album soon, and also fancy seeing that ‘Lost in Translation’ film (don’t know if it’s any good?).

As I type now, since writing the above, I sit in ‘discomfort’. I pulled ‘something’ while attempting to pick up a shed.

Tip of the week- “If your weekly routine comprises of sitting at a computer for a good deal of the time, don’t go out at 8.30am on a frosty morning and try to pick up a shed, without a serious rub down first!”

What you reading, watching, listening to? Drop us a quick eeeee!

See you when you’re passing!?!

Jules & Em.

February 2004

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January 2004

Well, what a December break that was – We now reside in East Goscote.

A fantastic break but made a tad hectic with the transition. Still a few boxes lying around, and the inevitable boxes that will be put in the garage with the tag, “we’ll sort them later”.

Em & I are over the moon, and ‘Bath Street’ seems a pleasant distant memory.

Still ‘stuff’ to be done though, it seems New Houses aren’t built like the used to be. Plus things like ‘Bish Bash Bosch’ the washing machine is upset with the move and has broken down. The Washing Line doesn’t fit in the hole. Shelves and Lights to be fixed up. Out with the Readers Digest DIY manual. Hummm… feeling mature… bought a pair of ‘slippers’ from BHS the other day, don’t tell anyone. (you’ve all got them, but slippers just doesn’t sound cool do they).

Anyway, the tropical fish (‘mature’ stuff again) are still alive, 2 Tetra type things, 1 Scissor Tail and 1 Cat Fish. Nice! They came with the fixtures and fittings of the house. We’ve just added a Redtailed Shark and 2 Ruby Black Barbs and they are all getting along nicely.

Next on the agenda is the Wedding etc. loads to be done, it’s all in hand, but there’s probably something we’ve forgotten.

Reading at the mo. – Bill Brysons – A Short history of Nearly Everything, – ’tis good.

Listening at the mo. – not much, aint had time… but ‘The The’ and ‘Wilco” are still good standbys

Viewing at the mo. – again been busy, but “Love Actually” was ‘nice’, still yet to see the last “L.O.T.Rings” and want to see “Master and Comander”… too busy, but the tea time session of “The Salon” is a bit of a tonic of sorts.

The new local (The Wheel in Rearsby) promises to supply a fine pint or two… and we’re off tonight to sample one or two. But then again the local could be The Plough in Goscote, or of course Stubbies in Queniborough.

And so here goes 2004.

I do hope y’all had a good seasonal break, and that you’re all relativley well.

Again if your passing within 50 miles of the Shire of Leic. please pop in and say Hi!

All the best,

Jules & Em. January 2004

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November 2003

Well what’s new with us since last time I wrote?

Well the elderberries have now done their thing and are bottled and the resultant ‘wine’(?) is doing its thing, should be ready to drink next year. But will probably be sampled sooner.

HopefullyÉ we will be moving house in DecemberÉ eeek! Still not signed up but on course to do the move thing, not far, up the road to East GoscoteÉ excitedÉ Watch this space. Without boring youÉ Day to day life is goodÉ

Off to see Martyn Joseph soon, hopefully rejuvenate an awareness of ‘the other’ Also going to see Vin Garbutt do his thing soon, the annual pilgrimage.

Still walking regularly, if anyone fancies a jaunt (and an Ale) in the great outdoors!

I think we’ve been a tad coldy (Doc gave me and MOT & service last week) but thankfully we’ve dodged the fluey thing that some others of you are experiencing, ick. My tip – plenty of ‘real’ vit C like Kiwi fruit (& the tabs), it works honest!

Over arching all the ‘stuff/things’ that are going on – we are planning i. The move,  &  ii. The celebration next April 10th. Whey hey!

The run-up to winter has started and the saturnalia is showing its sparkly head everywhere ‘crazy time’. Not looking forward to the culture of selfish individuality that blooms at this time, however I/we are looking forward to celebrating life, throughout the annual season of decay! As some one once said/wrote ‘perhaps you need to destroy to create’ perhaps you need to empty to fill, perhaps you need to give to receive.

Anyhow, hope you are all well? What’s been happening with you? ?

What are you Reading? Still Wilbur Smith’s Blue Horizon, nearly finished.

What’s a favourite winter food? Ummm, homemade mushroom soup?

RememberÉ ‘Pooh stopped again, and licked the tip of his nose in a cooling manner for he was feeling more hot and anxious than ever in his life before.’ Stay cool!

Best wishes, thoughts, and a grin

Really love to hear from you!

Jules and Emma.

November 2003

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September 2003

All’s well… Elderberries call for the wine making equipment…

Well it’s September and the shorts have gone back on the shelf. Em & I have had a great Summer. What can I say… been here & there, done this & that and generally had a good time – rounding off summer with a week in South Devon soon. House still for sale ‘big sigh’ – now in a state of mid-decoration, hall & stairs due to be painted, and bedroom being painted as I type. Yep, time to make some Elderberry wine, off to de-berry the hedges tomorrow. Wedding plans are on schedule, I trust the date is penciled into your diaries. Pete & Sam are off Bulgaria and we are thinking of them at this challenging time – see the latest on their website, go back click the star ball. I think often also of those of you that I haven’t spoken to for yonks – Craig, Helen, Michelle, Steve, Bri & Toni, and YOU, I hope you are well and if you’ve spent the time to read this then I’d be delighted to hear from you!  It’s been a while and not sure what to report really – Life goes on and ‘stuff’ is good. Em is (amongst many other things) a tonic and nutrient to the meandering inquisition that is my mind.

Novel of the moment – any of the Courtney Series from Wilbur Smith (on Monsoon at mo, enjoying)

Book of the moment, Non Fict. – 101 Experiments in the Philosophy of Everyday Life, Roger-Pol Droit

Film of the moment… hummm… – The Pianist?

Music of the moment… hummm… – Turin Breaks or any Violin Concerto try Tchaikovsky ‘fantastic’

Radio Programme of the moment – amongst, others as ever, Late Junction Radio 3 – (great)

TV of the moment – none! generally crap but the occasional gem. (Neil Postman – Amusing Ourselves to Death)

Food of the moment – Pasties! add Large Mushrooms chopped and remove turnip! (don’t tell the Cornish or I’ll be excommunicated)

Enough waffle – as I always say if you are passing the shire of Leicester do drop in!

Until then, big smile… and a Major Chord… let’s say a D…

Remember – Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, Wisdom is knowing not to put one in a fruit salad.

and as Heraclitus wrote – “An unapparent harmony is stronger than an apparent one.”[?]

Bestestest wishes  😉  Jules & Em

September 2004

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May 2003

A rest is as good as a change.

As Charlotte Bronte uttered “A ruffled mind makes a restless pillowÉ” – indeed! And indeed a rest is as good as a change. Sometimes you just have to just stop ‘juggling the balls’ of life the universe and everything and just rest. Not that I had a ‘ruffled’ mind but we had a good rest anyway!

Em and I have been soaking up the sun (and feta cheese, fish, and the odd squeeze of red wine) in a large olive grove that sits snuggled under a sweep of rugged mountains on the north East Coast of the Isle Thassos (north Aegean Sea). To just stop and absorb ‘things’ rather than ‘thoughts’ for a week has been great. I heartily recommend it!

And what of ‘things’ well they are good. Back to work and England and the moistness that is the English Summer ?. Still looking to sell the house in Bath Street and then to look for a new home. Em & I are having fun discovering the resonance that occurs when two individuals start sharing their lives together – what toilet paper to buy; the best way to boil an egg; where have you hid the chocolate biscuits; and I like Fettuccine & I like CochiglieÉ as well as other joys like a smile when you need it and a hug even when you think you don’tÉ AnywayÉ enough ickyness!!!

After Martyn Joseph restored my faith in the faithless at Leicester Cathedral last month it’s onwards and upwards. Onward, keeping our feet on the ground and our heads towards the more wholesome promises of ‘life, the universe & everything’ and not the ‘pick & mix’, ‘boil in the bag’, spangled encumbrance of culture that so often swamps us down. Whooop dee do!

Anyway just thought I’d say Hi to y’all and let you know that we’re here! Just off the M1 in the Shire of Leicester, If you’re passing. Hope things are good with y’all.

Cherry Bakewells and Happy days!

J & E.   May 2003

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March 2003

Yep, as I said In January below “ÉLeicester is where I am and ‘stuff will be done’, who knowsÉ”.

LifeÉ well I don’t know. All I do know is I’m sitting here at work eating my pasty and I’m a happy bunny. Yep, bad stuff is going on and I’ll do what I can to help/deal with that, but I’ve found a new star in the sky and she’s called Emma, and ‘stuff’ is ‘Good’.

We’re engaged to be married (April ‘04).  I’m not going to waffle on ‘cos for a change I haven’t got much to say about life the universe and everything. My universe is much too exciting, challenging, rich and fun at the mo to wonder about the ‘bigger things’ – they just are. I’ve Sjuzhet-ed my Fabula – Life is Bigger – accept it and enjoyÉ eh?

The house is for sale, The cat is looking for a new home/carer, I have virtually no spare time (at the mo). I haven’t watched any substantial TV for more than 2 weeks now. – which is good,. Going without TV is like having a detox of the mind, try it for a bit (of course we do need to stay in touch with developments up in Weatherfield).

So I hope y’all are wellÉ I know some of you aren’t too well and I hope the rain clouds pass by soon, they will. Even in the bad weather, a smile can make you glow, as Mr Happy said to Mr Miserable in Happyland  go on give it a try, pause, and just ‘turn up your mouth at the corners’ an ickle bit. Not working? Hey HoÉ whateverÉ

The sun is rising on another day here in Leicester. The daffodils in the garden stretch, “hey you guys maybe spring is here todayÉ?” and shiver a late winter type shiver. It’s getting thereÉ ‘new life’ and all that. Once the play ‘A Jolly Sinister Jape’ is over (you don’t know what you’re missing), I hope I’ll have more time to get to the things that need getting to. But of course there’s the house to sell and a new one to find and a wedding to organiseÉ   and fun to be had.

Once again if any of you are passing Leicester or Syston (not that anyone does, of course you all bypass it via the Irish or North Sea) then gi’s a shout or drop in! There a pint of fine ale, or a cup of fine tea or a mug of fine coffee with your name on it. We are busy old bods so do call and we’ll try and catch up.

Let us know what you’re doingÉ?  Have fun whateverÉ  Jules.

Jules.    (March 2003)

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January 2003

Hey Hi Ho Hummm…

Well here we are a new year and all that Jazz. And what to make of itÉ? It took me about 2 hours back at my desk at work to feel as though I’d never been away. The familiarity of jobs, customers, desktop of the day, the sandwich van, etc attempted to absorb me back into its lair. However Crimble was a good respite, and from such times we all take with us little vivacity.

Over Crimble I finished the book I’d been meaning to pick up for a while and since then it’s sequel. They are going to be hard to beat this year. I speak of Chris Stewart’s ‘Driving over Lemons’ and ‘Parrot in a Pepper Tree’. Subtitled ‘An Optimist in Andalucia’ they are just that – optimistic writings from his experiences living in Southern Spain. Having spent a holiday in the region myself the imagery had enjoyable resonance. However the books have something else about them that seems to pull on the often too forgotten chord in all of us that – live is life, god is good, rock and roll, we’re aliveÉ what ever you may call itÉ there are pennies from heaven.

This digestion of positivism; the crisp thawing winter outside; the coincidence that Radio 3 have just played Tchaikovsky ’s Violin Concerto (one of my favourites pieces of music); a Friday off work; a smile from the cat; new buds on my Bonsai tree; and the fact that I’ve taken my bounty-less build-up of bottles to the bottle-bank, I now feel charged (all be it with a flu-toned glow) for 2003.

The fig tree may have taken 3 or 4 years to bloom (we don’t know if it did?)Luke Ch.13. but we know that it takes time for oranges to ripen, for children to grow, for a storm cloud to expire. And so, onward and upward eh?

So with little plans, Leicester is where I am and stuff will be done, who knows what the river will do, rise, fall, dry up, overflow? We shall see.

I’m back. I was distracted by a call from a friend, hummÉ I do recommend the above books as I recommended ‘Bird Song’ by Sebastian Faulks in my Crimble email but that is a much more challenging read. Phew! is all I can say to that.

Well its now 3.55pm and the cold from outside is creeping in, time to flick the heating forward before my legs loose sense of purpose. The Norah Jones album has finished on the CD I’m off for a strong coffee and a ginger bikkie. Taraa for now and let me know how things are going?

Jules.

(January 2003)

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(sometime in 2002)

Dear friends,

Sunday night and all’s well…  spent all day doing that Sunday soliloquy type-of-thing that’s becoming a bit of a habit. ‘Coronation Street’ seemed a Low-tak Boil-in-the-bag Culture overload so I pulled myself away from the box (literally, I’m sure the sofa was trying to digest me). Due to the consumption of a few fine (and I do mean fine) ales with some pals last night, today has been tinged with a permanent ache of the cranial variety if you know what I mean (Panadol for breakfast, yum yum). Nature’s way of saying blah blah yeah yeah etc.  Anyway, looking through the mists of self induced discomfort, Freedom & Peace are still a reality and we fall short of honouring Love, but hay r efocus and pray that tonight’s sleep will soothe away the post-excess exhaustion.

Life’s still a meal that continues to overwhelm me. The menus of various varieties seem to not portray the true experiences and nourishments that are to be found. Some menus cheapen the whole thing, some trivialise, some lie, some exaggerate, it seems that rarely do you find a prospectus that’s reliable or worth putting your trust in. And then there’s the whole ‘taste’ thing (Éthe enemy of art, as The Edge once said), we prefer, or would rathe r have, or treasure, or wishÉ is that selfish?  I suppose we should Grab onto life and eat, drink and rejoice. But surely one should be prudent and there’s always more on offerÉ a different restaurant, nutritional advice, the latest recommendation or deal, someone else’s plateÉ yet another menu that promulgates betterÉ ‘Greener Grass’ I s’pose. Yeah Yeah YeahÉ  enjoy what’s on your plate and give thanksÉ  OK I will, ‘cos it is good.

Life’s good. There are bad parts of the apple, inevitably, and not all’s wholesome and worthy of having more, and yes life’s for sharing, (I’m reminded of the people that all eat from the same potÉ  beautiful). It’s just I feel an urge to feed as well as be fed, A bottle of wine is too big for one, A meal for one truly does seem quite an ignorant thing. Surely life’s meals are more that just about refuelling getting enough to carry on, surely they are what make us Us, both collectively and individually. I just wish I had someone to share it with more personally, and perhaps someone that might be interested in what I’ve picked from the menu todayÉ Enough waffling, I’m sure the answer is far simple than we try to make the question. I’m off to make a cup of tea for one and have a co-op mint chocolate break biscuit (there’s 5 more in the packet by the way). I’ll share it with the cat. Happy days!

I hope you’re all well.

Jules.    (sometime in 2002)

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