View From The Glen

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Danish Christmas Eve

As a kid, in the UK, every Christmas Eve was dinner out and a trip into Liverpool to the Pantomime. I remember vividly the drive, counting lit Christmas trees in Windows with my brother, Barry, dinner all dressed up, and the floodlit, red-carpeted splendour of the theatre steps. Maltesers, music, dancing. Peter Pan. Snow White. Always a grande "Dame" whom we could boo and hiss at in true theatrical fashion. I always left floating, staying awake on the drive home to search the skies for a glimpse of Santa and Rudolph's flashing nose.

I could never imagine anything topping that. But as I look at my kids around the table tonight, their Danish heritage of pickled herring, rice pudding, and schnapps at a late Christmas Eve Feast with family is just as rich and vibrant to them as my panto was to me. It's all about the traditions you keep and the memories you forge.

That's what Christmas is truly about.


Sunday, December 21, 2014


December 21st. A day to appreciate the stillness, the silence.

A day to deck the halls for Yule, and light up the house in festive lights that serve both to ward off the darkness on this longest night of the year, and celebrate the return of the light. 

I think it's my favourite day of the year. It's when Christmas starts, truly starts, for me.

Saturday, December 6, 2014


Move over, literary crushes (see )

There are a couple of new guys in my life.


William Murdoch is not my type. I usually go for the broody or the cavalier (think Aragorn or Han Solo), and this guy is way too clean cut, too fastidious, too cautious for me. Or so I'd have thought. And yet, I am utterly hooked on Murdoch Mysteries, and can't get enough of him. I think it's his brilliance. I really like intelligent men. And Murdoch is one helluva intelligent man. 

Funnily enough, I'm a fan of Murdoch, not the actor who plays him. In fact I was disappointed to discover that actor Yannick Bisson lives in a modern house with stainless steel appliances...the very antithesis of William Murdoch. How can that be? 

In complete contrast is this next guy. The broody one. The one whose film and television roles play second fiddle to the actor himself. Though I've admired the actor for some years since first seeing him in The Hobbit, I never thought much beyond He'd be great as Richard III. That is until a few weekends ago when the kids and Andrew were away and I watched a decade old British TV miniseries in which he starred. 

Richard Armitage

No doubt his most famous role is Thorin Oakenshield, the Dwarven King who leads the quest for gold. 

I loved the character of Thorin. Dark. Complex. Strong. Compelling.

And then in North and South I met John Thornton. Dark, Complex, Strong. Compelling.

And about then, I researched Richard Armitage himself. And he too is like that. Dark, Complex, Strong. Compelling. Also intelligent.

Irresistible really, that combination.

Monday, December 1, 2014

One Fun Lady

My mom is 68 today.

My mom who is quick to laugh, and has a sense of humour that just won't quit.

My mom who has an incredible, contagious, enthusiasm for all the fun things in life.

My mom who never lets anything get her down for long, who bounces back better than ever.

My mom whose childlike wonder of the world keeps her young. 

Happy birthday!