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Knit is a Four-Letter Word

Archive for December, 2012

Holidailies the Third – Sing Out Your Holiday Songs

Holidailies 2012

Holidailies prompt: Which holiday song do you think should be banned from the airwaves, and why?

You know what? I just can’t think of a single Holiday song I’d ban. Not even ones that make me cry, like Tim Minchin and his ode to expat Antipodeans, Southern Hemisphere Hot Christmases and his baby daughter.

Not even ones that feature singers I am not enthralled with, like the Marian Carey one that I’m not linking to because I mostly find her singing style shrill and over-done.

I can’t bring myself to be grinchy about songs that commemorate the season. And how, if I were Queen of the Airwaves and magicked away an annoying song, that I might be whisking away someone’s joyous holiday tradition.

Then I checked my old Facebook posts for this day,last year, and coincidentally I was posting about a holiday song. It was Choir Practice, and we were practicing Gaudete.

On December 3rd, 2011, I said

“We sang this in choir practice tonight. Bliss. Love the Gregorian Chant. I will be singing this in the church choir next Wednesday evening. (Not the solo bit, the bit where everyone sings. On a slightly embarrassing note, I mistook Steeleye Span for Steely Dan and had an interesting mental moment imagining Steely Dan’s foray into Gregorian Chant.)”

It’s twelve months later to the day. I’m thinking on friends in far away places this evening. Twelve months ago tonight, I was singing this song in practice with Nancy, Sarah, Darrin, Bob, Brenda, Kathy & Ania. And later in that week, when we stood up and sang it in from the choir loft, as the last notes rang out, the congregation paused, in awed hush, and then stood up and applauded. Glorious.

Hope you’re getting to sing your holiday songs this season.

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Holidailies 2012 – Looking Forward

Holidailies 2012

Holidailies prompt: What are you most looking forward to this holiday season?

It’s not that I’m not looking forward to this holiday season. I’m an atheist, so I’m a (usually) firm believer in not wishing my life away, since it’s the only one I get to have. And I (usually) love this time of year. All of the sparkly lights, the good food, the socializing with friends and family, the giving and getting of gifts, the break from work, all of the traditions that come along with this time of year.

I’ve spent the past fourteen holiday seasons in the Northern Hemisphere, in my own house, building a life and traditions. A new ornament every year, buying treats for my cats’ stockings, going to a succession of parties and gatherings with my friends, and groups, and family.

This year, though, I’m still drifting, unsettled. Even though I’ve been reconnecting with the Southern Hemisphere. Tonight was my first Christmas party of the season; the end-of-year gathering for the wildlife rescue I’ve been volunteering for. It was fun; Igot to dress up, eat good food (barramundi for mains, chocolate sachertorte for dessert) with a glass of wine, and chat to kind and interesting people. I even got a giftie from the head of the organisation – she made a game of it for all of us, with a numbered ornament that resulted in a gift for every attendee. I got Balfour’s Mince Pies, a tasty treat from a South Australian Baking Institution. We got to keep our wee ornaments; mine is a hot pink spiral.

And I’m part of the family Kris Kingle; we’ll be gathering on Christmas Day for the luncheon feast and the Kris Kringle swap. My plan is to make a scarf, as I’ve seen the accessories of the person I’ve been gifted, so I know just what to make.

And this will be the first Christmas I’ve been physically in the same space as my niece, V. She’s 7 now, and it’ll be fun to see her reaction to my giftie, in person, rather than as the far-away Auntie on the Skype.

So it really isn’t that I’m not looking forward to this holiday season, as some of the traditions are starting to come into place.

I’m really looking more forward to Christmas 2013.

Where I’ll have a job, and can happily luxuriate in the Christmas break.
When I’ll have a car, so I can drive myself to and from the family and friend gatherings.
When I’ll be in the same place as all of my stuff; so I can wake up on Christmas morning in my own bed.
Where I’ll be in the same place as my cats; so I can give them their treats that I’ve collected in their stocking.
Where I’ll be in my own place; so I can put up my tree (real or fake), and I can add the new ornament from that year, and ones from years past.

Where I’ll be past this first new anniversary of a now different Christmas, and where the sparkly lights and the good food and all of the rest of the traditions will be building on my future, and where I can put the sadness away, and look back on all I used to most look forward to with fondness, and all I have to look forward to with joy.

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Holidailies 2012, the First – Who Am I?

Holidailies 2012

The last time I attempted Holidailies was 2010, I got one post done, The Introduction, and I’m going to neatly cannibalize that post to reintroduce myself this year.

>>I’m Amanda Page, aka Emender Poige (to the American ear, that’s how my Australian accent sounds.)

I am still Amanda Page, and I regularly use Emender Poige as my online nom de plume. People also assume that Amanda Page is a made up name; it sounds writerly and a mighty handy name for an online writer. But no, that is my name in the real space too; first name from birth, and last name from the first marriage.

>>I’ve been blogging since it was online journalling, way back in the deep dark ages of late early 1996/early 1997. If you count all of the entries and laid them end to end, they might stretch halfway into 2011. It’s been a long time, but not prolific. And on a bunch of platforms that went away, as did a chunk of the entries. Litweb, Newsguy, Cyber-e-net, Diary-X, Geocities.

I would like to have kept all of my previous entries, but usually the platform was swept out from under me before I remembered what I tell everyone else – backup often, using multiple formats. I still have my paper journals from high school and it’s interesting reading what that girl thought about things. Things she thought were so important that I barely (or not at all) remember now. Heartening, that thought – in another decade or so, all that caused me such grief and angst over the past 3 years will have softened into fuzzy memories of events no longer sharp and impinging.

>>But I’ve been in every Holidailies since at least 2003 (blast from the past – check out the 2003 page. Considering 7 years in internet time is like counting in dog years, there’s still a surprising number of people there that I still know and “see.”

Barely in 2010, and in 2011, I didn’t sign up at all. Although great turmoil and upheaval can make for compelling narrative in other blogs, turns out it can be too much to write about at the time

>>After being online for such a long time, sometimes it can be hard to write – have I said it before, did I say it better the first time, should I be saying it now.
>>That is why I love Holidailies – once a year, I and a bunch of other writers push past that, and we write. I get to read a bunch of excellent entries, and I get to flex the writing muscle that doesn’t get a lot of use.

Can’t say this any better than 2010.

>>You’ve seen the word clouds on the blogs, it’s a plugin that I haven’t quite gotten around to working out.
>>Here’s my manual cloud – these are words you’ll expect to see a lot of over the course of Holidailies
>>Jeff. Australia. Australian. Knit. Knitting. Crochet. Crocheting. Yarn. cats. Adelaide. Hoover. Lucky. Cooking. Books. Christmas. Cards. Late. Tired. Bed.

The word cloud for this year would be similar;

Australia. Australian. Knit. Knitting. Crochet. Crocheting. Yarn. cats. Adelaide. Hoover. Lucky. Cooking. Books. Christmas.

but with a few significant changes;

Separation. Divorce. Unemployed. Weight Loss . Running. Family. Friends Starting Over.

A brief introduction –

My name is Amanda Page. I used to live in the USA, had a job, a house, a car and was married, and was a US size 20/Oz size 22.

My name is still Amanda Page. After my marriage broke down in January 2010, I dropped 60 lbs/27 kilos and six sizes in 6 months. By June of 2011, I was a US #8-10/Oz #10-12, and had started running 5KM races. I moved back to Australia in June 2012, with all of my stuff and cats, which are in storage and a cattery, respectively. I’m looking for work, working on getting a car, and my own place to live. I’m starting over.

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