The New Year Looms

I’m just starting to get used to the holiday. It takes a few days to get Christmas over and relax. Unfortunately we start again next week, though in my case it’s probably only a day and a half. Wednesday and Friday are the target days though I may do more if we have a flood of parcels to pack. Julia is back to work on Thursday and that will be it for another year. The days will be longer by then – 12 minutes longer in fact, and progressing, by that time, at two minutes a day. By the end of the month it will be 3-4 minutes a day and things really get moving. However, I won’t get too enthusiastic just yet as it’s still a long way to Spring.

It’s a sad time of year because it reminds me that I can no longer walk amongst the spring flowers without  a lot more planning and equipment than I used to need. Snow drops, crocuses (my favourite spring flower), daffodil, bluebell, tulip . . .


The RHS has Lily of the Valley as Number 20 on their list of spring flowers. To me, even the very name is like a cold hand round the heart. It’s the scent of drawer liners and ancient aunts and, even today we end up with it in the shop when widows bring in stamp collections that have been stored in wardrobes. We use the mint condition stamps to stick on envelopes and there is little worse than licking a stamp that smells of Lily of the Valley.

I see irises are listed as spring flowers, with a flowering season starting in January. I vaguely know that they are earlier than I think, but always mentally pigeonhole them as May onwards. hat’s despite the pictures I am going to use, which clearly shows them being earlier. The mind plays tricks on us all, though not as cruel as the one that makes me think I am 19 and slim. That’s why I prefer internet shopping – no shop windows to reflect the dreadful truth.

For lunch, we will be having turkey sandwiches with mayonnaise and redcurrant jelly. If I get my act together we may have stuffing too, but it will involve cooking more as someone, and I will point no fingers here, didn’t cook enough stuffing when she did the Christmas Dinner. That never happens when it’s my turn to cook it.

Daffodils in the Mencap Garden

We have a number of taste sensations coming up for the rest of the month – Julia bought me Jeyes’s sauce for Christmas. It’s a poor choice of name in my mind, as Jeyes is the manufacturer of excellent disinfectant ((Jeyes Fluid), not the product of Philadelphus Jeyes of Earls Barton. According to Wikipedia James Jeyes, the disinfectant man, was the son of Philadelphus Jeyes the sauce man (who used to work for Perrin of Lea & Perrins. That’s still no excuse for launching a dark brown sauce that has the name of a dark brown disinfectant. It’s about on a par with the French firm that makes Pschitt, which is never going to sell well in the English-speaking world. To be fair, it was launched before the concept of eurobranding took hold.

However, you won’t believe which condiment Number One Son bought me for Christmas . . .

Sorry about the woeful selection of Spring flower photos – I know I have better ones, I just can’t find them.

Snowdrops, though I expect you knew that

7 thoughts on “The New Year Looms

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      Yes, I like the longer days. The younger generation, and their saucy ways must, I fear, be blamed on us for bringing them up to express themselves freely. A little too freely when it comes to their opinion of my dress sense and health regime.

  1. Lavinia Ross

    Spring flowers aren’t that far around the corner! Lily of the Valley – I remember that flower, and scent. I tried to grow them here a few times, but it is too dry in summer. New England was a better place to get some established.

    We had a mighty wind and rainstorm here yesterday. The old plum tree came down, snapped off at root level. Some work ahead cleaning that up!

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      Part of the cycle of life I suppose – an old tree comes down, habitat changes, you get healthy exercise . . .

      In UK I always used to hate working in a garden with Lily of the Valley – they always seemed more like weeds than flowers. Just my prejudice, I suppose. 🙂


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