Monday, December 18, 2023


My darling ex-sister-in-law Hilary sent that shell angel ornament for me with her brother and niece, who were visiting from Jamaica and were our house guests in New York this weekend. Hilary and her brothers, and my brother and I grew up together, a few houses apart on storied Paddington Terrace, for which this blog is named. Robert and I agreed on how happy we were that after my brother and his sister married and then divorced, Hilary found the love of her life in the form of a nuclear physicist on the other side of the world.

My son's wife and my daughter just might be soulmates of a sort. They get along so happily and effortlessly, and have done, right from the start. In fact, some years ago at a party, my daughter told her brother, "If you don't marry this girl, I will."

My girl took a weekend trip to a snowy place with the one she actually plans to marry this year. They decided to explore somewhere that felt completely unfamiliar to them, which is how they ended up in Colorado.

My choral group held its winter concert on Saturday, and it went off beautifully. In fact, it is probably the best our choir has ever sounded, especially our concluding rendition of The Hallelujah Chorus. That's me and one of my best buds Lisa behind me, as we were filing out after singing it. I do love making a joyful noise at rehearsals every week with my friend, and then going for soup and a good catch-up session afterward. 

My musician nephew's public profile is about to go wide. Watch this space.

Here's a photo of me at age 11, run through a photo repair app. The original is grainy, but I think I might prefer it. I look into the hopeful face of this girl and wonder, how did she see her life unfolding? Isn't it always a surprise, the loves we meet and the turns we had no idea we would take alongside them? I’ve now reached the age my parents were when I thought they were old. Now I understand that only the body ages, and we are all the bright hopeful ages we ever were inside. 

I get so few pictures of my son. This isn't a great one in terms of photo aesthetics, but it captures a moment of deep and thoughtful conversation between us, so I cherish it.

 The predicted storm this morning was a monsoon. From inside my house, the pattering sound was like soft drumming and light cymbals swishing. The winds and rain have tapered off now, which is good, because my daughter and her love will be flying home this afternoon. Traveling mercies to all of us here, whether we venture far afield or not this season.


  1. Lovely photos and memories of you and yours.
    We're having very warm weather right now and the little snow we did get is quickly melting. Christmas continues to creep closer; I'll be thankful when it's over.
    The black dog continues to hound me, see what I did there? I'm just so tired and sad. Hopefully with the passing of Christmas it will leave.

  2. Just loving the love here. So much of it. So precious. Some of it said with smiles, some with eyes.
    Here's something I just noticed- all of the women in the photo of your choir have their mouths tightly shut. Well, at least the five of you in the front. Can't tell with the masked lady and the one in back may be smiling. Are you all holding back the notes from coming forth before their time? Or after their time?
    Whatever. Every person in these pictures is beautiful.

  3. These random glimpses are heartening. Thank you.

  4. So very sweet, all of it. Happiest of holidays to you and your loves.

  5. Mary G on the annoying anonymous iPad again.
    You have wise eyes, and I love it that they captured your thoughtful self even as a very young ... and beautiful ... girl. And the angel shell is delightful. Looking at your choir photo reminds me to get out my Christmas music discs. The Younger Daughter needs to be greeted by the Hallelujah chorus, don't you think? She has ten whole days here, starting Wednesday. If I I could sing, I' would launch into that chorus myself.

  6. Thank you so much for all of this loveliness, needed, cherished, hopeful love. You live in beauty and joy-the art of a grand life-YOU, (Lindasue)

  7. Your home looks so warm and cozy. I love seeing these photos from your life. So much joy and love.

  8. I love this series of pictures of your life and family.

  9. I love these random images of your life and loves. So beautiful in every way. (NewRobin13)

  10. Nice reminders of your life and loves.