Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Christmas 2010

Christmas just wouldn't be right without a candle-lit carol service, once again very moving indeed.  This year's lump-in-the-throat was a rendition of Silent Night.  I couldn't help but be reminded of those stories about soldiers in the First World War singing Silent Night, playing football with the Germans during that brief time when men could just, for a brief time, rise above the evils of the World and accept each other.

We're reminded how Christ came into the world, not as a King in a palace but as a Saviour in a manger. What does Jesus make of all the cards, presents and so on at this time of year?  Probably not much, so let us think of him as a family and look towards Easter to make sense of it all once again.

Our Christmas, once again this year, hasn't gone exactly to plan with us not all being able to be with each other.  Nevertheless all is (mostly) well with the wider family. One of the real bonuses is that we can all take a good rest, for each one of us there is the real need to do that.  For B & H the autumn term always seems long and this was again the same, though I wonder, if they've been more aware this year of how long its been.  It seems so long ago - early September - still summer time really when they started back in their summer dresses and now here we are in the middle of the winter.  Each one of us has just kept going and now we have all mentally stopped and flopped.  The opportunity for us to recharge our batteries is important.  For me, mentally recharging those batteries is important and even now I still have things on my mind from work.  No great worries, just wondering how I will solve this or that issue.

Here we are with Grandma, just starting the Christmas afternoon frenzy of opening presents.  Rachel always tries to string it out for as long as she can, savouring every moment.  The rest of us are simply not patient enough!

It's also a delight to play a few silly games.  This was "chase the ace" an Hannah always going about it in her normal funny, cute way.

As part of helping me relax mentally, I have happily been on a few runs, including about 30 minutes on Christmas morning, and over an hour on the following two days.  It works wonders!  Sometimes I run for a mile or so on a kind of auto-pilot, not really concentrating on the running with my feet just doing what they need to do, while I completely loose myself in though.

I naturally wonder what 2011 will bring.  Almost certainly life will continue to tick over and I'm certainly not seeking anything more.  My challenge continues to be in dealing with the pressures of life and particularly work which links nicely into running as the antidote.  Although it's tough going at times, I know I must carry on.  I need the challenge of doing my job, seeing how it continues to develop.  Again I think I'm the luckiest person there in having a unique job that evolves generally in positive ways.  The more I immerse myself in work, the more I'm likely to stay there and in turn the greater the pressures.  With that is the need to have that escape, that safety valve of getting out thre for a good run.  Cycling this year will also be a part of that as a means of keeping fit.

I remember going through a phase of rising the 13 miles each way to work and my weight almost dropping by the day.  Sometimes I'd even go for a run in the gym after that ride.  I'm out of the habit of cycling but through running I understand more about how my body works.  However, running and cycling appear more inter linked than ever nowadays.  I've taken the plunge and decided to get a Thorn Audax mk3 for 2011....

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