Nadja Birkenstock – “Il Est Ne Le Divin Enfant” (He Is Born, The Divine Child).

Hey people! ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

ย  ย Epiphany is coming tomorrow, so itโ€™s still Christmas time, and I decided to share with you this joyful French Christmas carol, played by the German Celtic harpist.ย 

Christmas wishes, plus a bonus, Christmassy song of the day.

It’s Christmas Eve, so while a lot of people in a lot of countries aren’t celebrating Christmas just yet, for those who do celebrate it at all I’m sure the atmosphere is already very Christmassy anyway. If you’re a regular on my blog, you know that here in Poland we start our Christmas celebrations on Christmas Eve afternoon/evening with a very festive supper, and then a lot of people go to Midnight Mass, particularly if they have young children. In fact, it’s fair to say that in the whole Christmas period, it’s Christmas Eve that is most celebrated and festive here when it comes to traditions and the like. So I always like to send people Christmas wishes on Christmas Eve already.

I wish you all a very joyous and peaceful Christmas. May it be a blessed time for you, filled with a bit of everything good – prayer and true joy because of Christ’s coming, beautiful Christmas music, time with your loved ones if you have them around this Christmas, whether in person or perhaps only virtually, time alone, God’s presence in your life and thoughts, yummy food, amazing presents, joy from giving something to others, love, fun, rest, laughter, relax, sleep, snow, cosiness, some funn book or film etc. etc. – And please, I’ve already mentioned Him, but don’t forget whose birthday we’re actually celebrating. I think it would feel very rude for most if not all people if like a half of the world declared they celebrated someone’s birthday and yelled about it for a month in advance, but the person in question wouldn’t even get any attention from most of the birthday guests on the actual day but instead people would just give presents to each other and consistently ignore the birthday boy/girl.

For those of you who aren’t Christians but are also going to have some relaxing, festive sort of time, or for whom it’s going to be life as normal, may it also be a really good time for you and may you find something in it that will fill your heart with joy.

For those who identify with some other religions and perhaps celebrate some other holidays soon, or those who celebrate Christmas a bit later on, may you have just as peaceful and joyous and fun-filled holidays.

And for those for whom this Christmas season will be difficult for some reason, whether they do celebrate it or not, because they’ve lost someone, or because they can’t be with their family, or because it’s a very difficult time for you every year for whatever reason, I wish you hope, strength, and that despite the difficult time, you may also find a bit of comfort in it. At this time of the year there’s a lot of mostly very superficial, sickly sweet and toxically positive talk about how “magical” and merry it is, but it’s totally okay if you do not feel on cloud nine if for you this happens to be a time of grieving, or bad mental or physical health, or loneliness, or exhaustion/overwhelm due too many people around and perhaps also needing to cook for them or something.

Misha doesn’t really care about Christmas as such very much, but he likes all the comotion around it, especially wrapping presents and Christmas decorations, and the Christmas Eve supper because there’s a lot of fish, and a lot of good food for him throughout the Christmas period. So he’d like to wish all the pets a happy Christmas time, hoping that they’ll also get a lot of yummy food and maybe some nice presents and that they’ll have a lot of fun.

Since our actual song of the day today wasn’t Christmassy, I thought I’d do the same thing as last year and share a bonus Christmassy song in the Christmas wishes post. I had a bit of a problem choosing one though, because it seems like I’ve shared all of my absolute most favourite Christmas songs in the previous years. Finally I decided on a song that perhaps isn’t among my absolute favourites, but that I really like to listen to around Christmas ever since I first heard it on BBC Radio Cymru. And unlike last year, it’s not a carol but just a lay Christmas-themed pop song about snow and how beautiful/unusual Christmas time is, although I don’t understand it in its entirety so it’s a very generalised summary of it I suppose haha. Since it’s from BBC Radio Cymru, you’re right to assume that it’s in Welsh. It’s called “Nadolig Oer” (A Cold Christmas) and is sung by Ifan Siรดn Davies, who is most known as vocalist in the Welsh indie rock band Swnami which I really like and whose music I’ve shared a few times before. The Christmas music period on my blog is really long though (goes from the beginning of Advent all the way to Candlemas) so maybe I’ll still fall in love with some new to me Christmas carol or song and share it.

Happy Christmas! ๐ŸŽ„

 

Song of the day (18th December) – Enya – “Last Time by Moonlight”.

Hey people! ๐Ÿ™‚

With Christmas coming very soon, I thought I’d share with you a piece from Enya’s Christmassy/wintery album which I really love, namely And Winter Came. Just as it is for many people, Enya says that winter is a very reflective time of the year for her, with a lot of reminiscing and thinking about her life. And so this song also has such a reflective, and also as Enya says romantic, feel to it. It’s about a couple who once loved each other, their reflecting back on the time when they were still with each other before they parted. I really like the wintery feel of this song.

Celia Briar – “We Wish You A Merry Christmas/Auld Lang Syne”.

Hey people! ๐Ÿ™‚

Christmas isn’t yet here, but it’s coming very soon, and so I thought I’d share something Christmassy today, the second Christmassy song this Advent. This set of two pieces comes from the Irish Celtic harpist Celia Briar whose music I’ve already shared on here a few times. As you can figure out from the titles, the first one is We Wish You a Merry Christmas, and the second is the Scottish Auld Lang Syne. It comes from her Christmas album Celtic Peace at Christmas.

Celia Briar – “We Wish You a Merry Christmas/Auld Lang Syne”.

Ten Things of Thankful.

I thought it’s time to do some gratitude list post, as I haven’t done it in a while. As usual with such posts, I’m linking up with

Ten Things of Thankful (TToT).

  1. ย ย  That my immediate family are more or less healthy again. We had a wave of Covid goingย  through our house in the last couple of weeks and we suspect we all might have been sick with it, to a varying degree. My parents certainly were, and it was them who were particularly badly ill. I was especially worried about my Mum, who has episodic asthma, and has been in the midst of an episode when it hit her, so she had really awful cough, but was also generally quite unwell with awful muscle pains and stuff. Thankfully, my Dad is completely well now and back to work, and my Mum is a lot better. She still can’t feel smells or tastes and has worse cough than her usual asthma cough, but other than that she says she’s feeling well and it shows. I’m really glad this is over, as it was quite depressing having a mini hospital at home, and like I said quite worrying at times.
        1. Good sleep last night. My sleep has been very up and down lately, and yesterday I had quite an awful anxiety day. It took me ages to settle down to sleep and I was really scared to fall asleep, but when I eventually did fall asleep I got solid ten hours of it and didn’t even wake up all the time as is usual when I’m having bad anxiety.
  2. Mum’s help. I’ve been having a lot of stuff to do this week – some Christmas shopping, writing and sending cards to people, some banking stuff etc. – and my Mum helped me with it all, which I am the more grateful for given that she’s still recovering. I’ve got a HUUUUGE collection of English-language cards that my Mum stocked up on for me years ago so that I can send them to people abroad, as I only send cards to people abroad at this point. That card collection is also something I’m grateful for, so that I don’t have to worry every single year whether I’ll be able to find the right cards for people in the shops but just pick something from my overflowing box. ๐Ÿ˜€ Christmas shopping is also so much easier for me with my Mum because I’m terrible with money and stuff like that, even when shopping online. Not to mention banking. ๐Ÿ˜€
  3. Lots of snow. We’ve been having a lot of snow since the end of November. Well, not like A LOT, but surprisingly much for this time, we usually don’t get proper, fluffy snow that would stay around for a longer time until about Christmas. And this early snow has been very fluffy so you can make snowballs and snowmen and whatever you want from it. We’d been in quarantine and now Sofi’s school has their classes online because a few teachers are sick, so Sofi’s really happy with the snow and we both play in it together with Jocky, and Jack Frost haha. It also means that I can wear my comfy fluffy overalls in the evenings that my Mum’s made for me for Christmas a few years ago, and it’s the season for tea with ginger and other amazing things like that. Tomorrow, provided that Sofi won’t lose interest, we’re going to make gingerbreads.
  4. Misha. I am grateful for Misha’s existence each and every day, even though today I haven’t even seen him yet because in the morning he played with Sofi and now no one knows where he’s sleeping.
  5. Tasting Christmas food. My Mum’s made a start to making all our traditional Christmas dishes, but because her sense of taste is non-functioning at the moment, it’s been quite challenging for her. Thus, Sofi and I kindly offered our help with the gustatory part. It was mostly meant to be for our current benefit – so that we get to taste all the Christmas food before Christmas actually comes – but now I’m really glad we thought about this because otherwise some of the dishes would be really quite insipid haha. I mean, Mum said she seasoned everything but it must’ve been some truly minuscule amounts. I really hope Mum’s senses go back to normal until Christmas so she can actually enjoy Christmas food.
  6. Medication. I’m grateful for having pain killers, as well as my migraine and anxiety medicines available. I had a migraine on Monday, which was pretty shitty, but I’m sure it would be even shittier if I didn’t have the migraine meds. And like I said I also had quite high anxiety yesterday. I’m absolutely used to dealing with anxiety with no meds, as that’s what I did for most of my life until I got my diagnoses, and I still try to take my PRN med only when things get really bad because it’s Xanax (except it has a different name here) so it’s highly addictive. It only takes the edge off it most of the time, but that’s still a very welcome difference and I’m extremely grateful for that, as at least it helps me to focus on and see other things in life beyond my little Bibiel brain bubble.
  7. My little Bluetooth speaker. Well, I’ve had it for over a year now and I’ve always loved it, but the reason why I mention it in this gratitude list specifically is that recently, for some mysterious reasons, it had stopped working for me. Basically, this speaker always gets a little freaky when I get a phone call, like it doesn’t know what to do about it. Sometimes its volume will go all the way up and it will play the ringer sound at the same time when my phone’s already playing it (best way to be woken up at night, and wake up everyone else), or it’ll turn off and never turn back on or anything when I finish the call. Sometimes when I answer the call I’ll hear it through the speaker, other times through the phone. So overall it’s just very unpredictable in how it behaves with phone calls and I don’t really know why, but normally I don’t care much because I don’t talk to people on the phone much. And earlier this week, I was listening to music when Sofi called me, and I heard a very weird popping sound from the speaker and then it turned off. I talked with Sofi, and wanted to turn the speaker back on when we finished the call, but it just made that popping sound again and wouldn’t play despite it looked like it was on. I tried to reset it but again it would only pop when I turned it off and on, and nothing beyond that, despite several trials, literally nothing I came up with seemed to help. I was really disappointed because it’s a really good speaker and I’ve been really happy with it so far. It has a smooth, bedroom-y sound, which is what I was looking for because I mostly wanted a speaker that I could listen to music from at night, but at the same time, unlike most speakers specifically branded as bedroom speakers, it sounds very clear even at relatively low volumes, and very neat when you turn it up as well. Also everyone says that it fits my room aesthetically for some reason. And my Mum always says she envies me it, which I totally understand, haha. And it’s from B&O which are known to make good devices overall so I wouldn’t have expected that this speaker would have such a short life or be so prone to serious malfunction, especially given its price, and I also have headphones from B&O so I was wondering if I should also prepare for their time to come soon. I was planning to get in touch with B&O somehow, but in the meantime my speaker was totally useless. Then yesterday I tried to turn it on once again, and, surprise! it worked! I’ve no idea what was wrong with it but now it works completely fine. I even got Sofi to call me again while I had it connected to my phone and it didn’t freak out. I’m really glad to have a functioning speaker again, and now I appreciate it even more that I don’t have to rely on the iPhone’s built-in and rather unfriendly-sounding speaker all the time. ๐Ÿ˜€
  8. That we have the possibility to attend traditional Latin Mass every week. I recently wrote about our discovering and kind of “conversion” to traditional Catholicism, and you can read about that here.ย  I am also grateful for all the resources that help me develop my faith and for all the grace that God gives me to make it possible for me to do so.
  9. My language-learning progress. This week has been rather low-key in this department, but I’ve been listening to a lot of Norwegian podcasts and have become a lot more confident when it comes to my listening skills in this language. I have also learnt some interesting new Welsh words. Fun fact for y’all: there’s such a word in the Welsh language as clusfeinio (klis-VAY-nee-aw in the North or klees-VAY-nee-aw in the South though I’m never quite sure how to represent Welsh sounds in English phonetically) which means to listen attentively, as well as to eavesdrop. I think it’s cool that there’s a language in this world that has a special word for the particularly attentive kind of eavesdropping, as this is something I do a lot. People-watching, blind edition.

What are your thankfuls this week? ๐Ÿ™‚

Sarah Copus – “Walking in the Air”.

And today, it’s time for the first Christmas song on here this Christmas season! I’ve already shared with you this lovely Christmas classic performed by one of my faza people Declan Galbraith, but I also really like this ethereal version by Sarah Copus. Sarah Copus is a singer and harpist, who aside from her own solo activity, also collaborates with their parents’ new age-y (and a bit creepy sounding to me most of the time) music project called 2002, she contributes the vocals on a lot of their newer music.

Question of the day.

I recently bought…

My answer:

…Well, the books for my Mum and Sofi that I’m going to give them as Christmas gifts. Other than that, our house continues to be a hospital (now it’s also my Mum who is sick with something that looks like it might well be Covid, she had a test today so we’ll see) and me and Sofi order food for lunch for ourselves every day and today I got us some pierogi which were really yum.

You? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

I want…

My answer:

…to do some book shopping tonight, or tomorrow. I buy books all the time but this time, for a change, they’re not going to be for me, and they’re going to be actual, physical books rather than ebooks or audiobooks. Christmas is slowly approaching, and my family have a problem with presents every year. I mean, we never know what to give each other, because we’re very self-sufficient folks, maybe except for Sofi who LOVES getting presents, and if someone needs or wants something, they simply buy it for themselves rather than wait for the next Christmas or birthday or what not when someone else will be able to buy it for them as a present. After all, it is yourself who knows best what sort of things you like, and for me personally the whole present business feels a little awkward. So we never know what to get for each other, and we never know what we could want from each other. ๐Ÿ˜€ And Christmas shopping is stressful. I guess it’s my Mum who finds it especially stressful because she’s a bit of a perfectionist where family is concerned, but I think it’s stressful for everyone else too, again except for Sofi who absolutely loves shopping for presents just as much as receiving them herself, both because of all the joy of giving and because she loves visiting huge shopping centres which she isn’t allowed to do often. If it wasn’t for Sofi, we could do totally without presents, but Sofi would be disconsolate. So when we were talking with each other recently, Mum and me decided that this year, everyone will be getting each other books. I’m particularly happy about that because for a long time I’ve been wanting my Mum to read the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy by Sigrid Undset, and generally make friends with Sigrid Undset’s books, because I think my Mum and Sigrid Undset’s books are a really, really, really good match for each other. I first heard of Kristin Lavransdatter in the Jeลผycjada series by my favourite Polish author Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz, whose character Mila Borejko really loves Kristin and reads it numerous times in the series, and I think I read it there, or perhaps it was Musierowicz herself who said it, that every woman should read Kristin. I have read Kristin Lavransdatter twice, and then also The Master of Hestviken once and I loved them both for so many different reasons, though if I had to say what specifically, I’d have a hard time naming all those reasons because while I enjoyed the plot and all the Nordic vibes, it was something else that I can’t quite put my finger on that made me love these books so much. Sadly I have not been able to read more Undset’s books so far but I really hope I still will, maybe even will be able in the original at some point, who knows, although right now I feel like this is a super bold dream. Anyways, I’ve been drilling it into my Mum’s brain for years that she should read Kristin Lavransdatter, that she would LOVE it, probably even more than I do, but she still hasn’t so far. My Mum loves to read and always says how she would like to read more, she values literature very much and always encouraged Olek and me to read a lot when we were children, but she has not very much time for it, and when she does read, she has a real problem that she starts feeling sleepy real soon. Also she usually does it so that she is reading multiple books at once, which in the end means that she reads each book for a really long time. And these days she has a strong preference for non-fiction as it seems, she mostly reads biographies/autobiographies, books in the form of an interview, or some Christian books or from fiction she mostly reads old, Polish classics at the moment, most of which I had to read not so long ago as school compulsory reads so they haven’t gained much appeal for me yet. ๐Ÿ˜€ So maybe Norwegian fiction is a little bit outside of her comfort zone. Still, I know that if she makes this step out, she WILL love it. My Mum loves Scandinavian movies, used to read more Scandinavian literature too, like Mika Valtari whom we both love, loves Scandinavian landscapes and there are plenty of nature descriptions in these books by Sigrid Undset, basically she likes quite a lot of things Scandinavian. Besides, Undset was Catholic and her books are very Catholic. And they just have this kind of quality that makes me think it’s something for my Mum. So I’m going to buy her both Kristin Lavransdatter and Master of Hestviken.

And then there’s Sofi, who, as I wrote a while ago, has started to properly develop her passion for horses. Sofi isn’t the most passionate reader and is easily bored by books, but she already has a few books about horses from Mum and likes to read a bit from them once in a while and seems to be very fond of them even though I’m not sure if she has read any of them in its entirety. So I thought I could buy her at least a few books from the Heartland series for starters. Heartland is a series by Lauren Brooke about a girl called Amy Flemming who lives on a ranch called Heartland with her family where they take in all kinds of traumatised horses that they work with in a rather unconventional way. I was introduced to Heartland at school, where one of our boarding school staff read it to us in the evenings, there was one girl who was madly into horses and I guess the idea came from her. From what I remember we haven’t read much of that or not very regularly, but then some years later when I was already out of there, a Polish website which is kind of like an equivalent of GoodReads recommended Heartland to me and I was able to get all the 26 books that are in this series and read them. They are short and not very demanding really. Actually when I read them I was like 16-17 so to me they seemed rather infantile in some aspects and the characters were not the most multi-dimensional I’ve ever seen and either black or white and very wishy-washy, I remember that generally something about the writing style was a little grating to me or maybe it was due to the Polish translation, but all the stuff that concerned horses rather than people was very interesting, especially that I myself have gone to a stud where there are only horses who have been through a lot of yucky stuff before they ended up where they are now. I thought it could be a really good and not too challenging read for Sofi and Mum agrees with me so that’s what I’m gonna get her.

I have still no idea what I could get my Dad and Olek, my Dad likes historical books, especially things like albums, like books with photos of what some places used to look like, or other historical non-fiction, especially regarding WWII. I like historical books too, but they’re vastly different from what my Dad likes and our tastes are 100% incompatible so I just have no idea, maybe Mum will give me some suggestions. Olek also likes similar historical books to Dad plus a lot of adventure/mystery, crime novels etc. so mostly also not my thing and here I’m not even sure if Mum will be able to help. So I’m going to order the books for them later on when I have some ideas.

How about you? What is it that you want at the moment? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Do you prefer Christmas or Easter (if you celebrate, if not pick your favourite holiday)?

My answer:

I feel like saying both and neither at the same time. ๐Ÿ˜€ Both because they’re both very important to me in a spiritual sense, and neither because I mostly dislike the very social aspect of both and they can be super stressful. Well, maybe not just plain dislike, I do think it’s important and an integral part of these festivities but I simply find it quite challenging and exhausting most of the time so I struggle with it on a personal level.

But I think I’ll choose Easter, because, at the end of the day, it is more important for us Christians and the real essence of our faith, and also because it has less of that kitschy, marketing coating that Christmas is wholly covered in, and which puts me off a bit more each year. It’s not quite so infantile. There’s no Easter music haunting you everywhere from the start of lent so that by the time the actual holiday comes it comes out your ears, as is the case with Christmas. The general craze with shopping, decorating etc. seems a bit lighter. Oh yeah and in recent years, I seem to have followed my Mum and started to really like Lent for all the specifically Lenten prayers and things like that. I used not to like it very much at all but these days I do. And then when it ends, somehow I also feel more joyful than at the end of Advent. Speaking of the ending of Lent, I love the Paschal Triduum and especially the rich, complex and loooong liturgy of the Paschal Vigil. The Midnight Mass on Christmas has a great feel too, but the Easter Vigil is kind of more mysterious, for lack of a better word.

But I do like Christmas food more than Easter food. Maybe it’s just my family and not a generally Polish thing but I feel like there’s a lot more diversity and generally a lot more traditions for Christmas dishes vs Easter dishes, and the Christmas ones are simply better in my opinion, and my siblings think so too. Generally, despite the greater importance of Easter, we always celebrate it more low-key in terms of external festivities like food, presents or what we do on these holidays in general. Like this year for example we didn’t even do presents at all, and that was okay with everyone, we just didn’t feel like doing it this year, especially my Mum. I only bought some candy for Sofi because I promised her a lot earlier that I’ll get her a specific type of candy for Easter that she likes.

How about you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Moya Brennan – “In Dulci Jubilo” (In Sweet Rejoicing).

Hi guys! ๐Ÿ™‚

Since the Christmas period over here lasts from Christmas Eve all the way to Candlemas, and because I haven’t posted much Christmas music in the song of the day this Christmas season, today, here’s a rendition of this German-Latin Christmas carol, from Moya Brennan, most known as the vocalist of Clannad, who is also Enya’s sister. She sings it in the English-Latin translation though.

Question of the day.

What was the last text you sent?

My answer:

Um, lemme have a look, I don’t text people all that often. I use WhatsApp more often normally, but recently I haven’t been messaging a lot with anyone on there either… Oh my, that was ages ago! At least for some people’s standards, I believe. ๐Ÿ˜€ The last text I sent was to Sofi, on Christmas Eve. And it says: “No, it’s not meant to be I guess, anyway”. It was after the Christmas Eve supper (for those who don’t know here in Poland it’s the supper on Christmas Eve which is the central Christmas meal and the most festive one), and Sofi was watching A Christmas Carol on TV and I went up to my room. After a while I had an impression like Sofi stopped watching it and went to her room as well, so I wanted to invite her over to me to play a bit of BitLife because I was sure she must be bored. So I texted her to come but she was still watching, although indeed she was bored nevertheless so we kept texting each other back and forth as I had nothing else to do at the moment either and she said that she thinks this film is scary. I said it’s weird, because the book isn’t, so I don’t think the film should be scary either. But Sofi said the book is also scary. So that’s why I wrote that it’s not meant to be scary, or so I think. I asked her if it’s because of the ghosts but she said that just generally the feel of it is scary. While I don’t see it this way, and I didn’t watch the film version, I get her, because we both tend to perceive a lot of normal things to be weirdly creepy. Curiously, I was in the theatre as a kid about Sofi’s age on A Christmas Carol, and it did trigger my sensory anxiety, but that was more due to some stuff about the performance rather than the plotline itself being scary. And Sofi generally doesn’t have any major anxiety issues, I guess it’s something to do with some sort of over-perceptiveness if it makes any sense, I don’t know.

So how about you? Oh, and do you think A Christmas Carol is scary? ๐Ÿ™‚

Anuna ft. Lynn Hilary – “Codhlaรญm Go Suan”

Hey people! ๐Ÿ™‚

So I was looking for something that would be in line with the current period and that I haven’t yet shared with you, and finally I did find something that I’m quite surprised I didn’t share with you before because I really love this piece, it’s so beautiful. I’m generally surprised that I’ve never shared anything from Anuna on here.

This is not necessarily a Christmas carol or anything like that, but it comes from one of Anuna’s Christmas albums and is like a contemporary Christian hymn, so I thought it still would be very suitable. It was composed and written by Michael Glynn – the musical director and founder of Anuna – and the soloist is Lynn Hilary who also used to be part of quite a popular Irish Celtic group Celtic Woman and has released some solo music as well.

Anuna is a very interesting project, they do choral music that is very much based on Celtic elements but also draws a lot from the Christian choral singing tradition. I am not a huge fan of choral singing but I like what they do.

Here are the lyrics to this song in English:

 

He comes with the wind

He goes on the waves

He hears my prayer

When I call Him in the darkest moment of the night

 

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly, my Christ

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly in Your heart

 

Naked He stands at the dawn

In the new-born child

He is there at the end

As the soul parts from the body

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly, my Christ

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly in Your heart

 

There is no one so full of mercy and love

There is no way to understand Your goodness

You are my teacher and guide

I sleep softly in Your heart

 

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly, my Christ

Softly, softly, softly

I sleep softly in Your heart

It doesn’t seem to be on YouTube, so below are the links to Spotify and Songwhip, and on the latter you can find all the other streaming services where it is available:

Anuna ft. Lynn Hilary – “Codhlaรญm Go Suan”.

Merry Christmas wishes to all peeps and pets & Christmassy song of the day – Jackie Oates – “The Worthy Wood Carol”.

Hey people! ๐ŸŽ…

It’s only Christmas Eve today, but here in Poland Christmas Eve is the most festive day of Christmas – a little absurdly maybe – so to me it feels more natural to wish people merry Christmas today, rather than only tomorrow.

So, I’d like to wish you a very happy, joyful and cosy Christmas. I hope that it won’t be difficult for those of you who are particularly affected by Covid this year, and that you will still have someone to spend this Christmas with, albeit it may be less people than usual, I hope you won’t be feeling lonely. I wish you lots of inner peace and joy for this time, whether you actually believe in the whole thing for Christmas and it has any special meaning for you, or it’s just a fun festive time for you. I also hope that you get to eat lots of yummy food and enjoy other pleasures of this time.

If you don’t celebrate Christmas or celebrate something else instead at a similar time, of course I hope you have great holidays or just a pleasant, chill time.

Misha is wishing all the best to your pets as well and lots of nice presents. ๐Ÿ™‚

Okay, so time for today’s song of the day now. Since it’s Christmas Eve, this will be a Christmas song, obviously, one from a lovely English folk singer and fiddler Jackie Oates – a beautiful lullaby carol. – Such Christmas carols which are at the same time lullabies are my favourites.

This one is called “The Worthy Wood Carol” and, according to Jackie’s own website, was written by an Exmoor gypsy in the 1920’s. I hope you like it. ๐Ÿ™‚

How I’ve been feeling lately.

Today, I’d like to write some a bit longer post inspired by a journaling prompt again, as I haven’t done that in a while. It probably won’t be too long or indepth, but I think it’ll be nice to do and also fill y’all in a bit on what’s going on for me. The prompt I chose to inspire myself with is from Listify by Marina Greenway and goes like this:

ย ย  Lately, I’ve been feeling… Your state of mind changes over time and through the seasons. Record how you are feeling right now. What is going through your mind? Are you responding emotionally to something that has happened earlier in the week? Are you anticipating your day in a positive or negative way? What does your general state of being feel like? Do this every so often to chronicle your journey.

I typically write in my journal and/or on here about how I’m feeling in a more prosaic form, and I don’t think doing a list will become my typical way of doing it, but I think it could be fun once in a while. So here is my list.

  • ย ย  Super anxious. I started feeling a bit anxious last Saturday (in this particular case when I say anxious I mean the sensory anxiety thing, but also generally I was super jumpy and hyper alert) and all that for no clear reason. I have some ideas now as for what could cause it, but given the intensity of the anxiety it seems very inadequate and this sensory anxiety episode has been one of the worst I’ve had in the last couple years. Last weekend and the beginning of the week was particularly awful, now I’m slowly recovering and it’s much better but still far from my baseline.
  • ย ย  Excited about MIMRAs (My Inner Mishmash Readership Award) and relieved that I’ve finally sent them out. This is a really happy and exciting process for me and I love the idea so much and that I came up with this, though all the preparations can get a bit exhausting. I am also hopeful that the winners will enjoy their MIMRAs as that’s the whole point of it. I am also happy that Sofi likes her new iPhone which she got from me earlier this week. It was meant to be a Christmas present, but since she chose the colour of it and the accessories anyway I figured I could just as well give it to her right away. Her old iPhone was in an awful state (our parents bought her a used one and it was in a pitiful condition already when she got it, but they refused to get her a new one even though the old one is now barely usable, because Mum says she doesn’t deserve it and needs to have higher grades. I don’t see it as a prize for anything, I think she should have a functioning phone to be able to do her schoolwork from home and not be lagging too far behind her peers with her knowledge and abilities regarding technology. Plus now that she has a functioning, brand new phone which will be supported for a few more years to come, unlike the old one, it should definitely serve her well at least until she’s 18, and then she can buy a new phone for herself, so no one of us will need to bother with buying her another phone any time soon. If she breaks it earlier, I emphasised it to her that it’s entirely her problem, although she does have coverage). She is really enjoying having a functional phone, and Mum now says that it was a good idea.
  • ย ย  A bit frustrated and tired. Frustrated with the fact that I’ve really been having a lot of migraines lately. Like, the last few months or so. It was the same last year about this time, autumn-winter, and then it got better, so I’m wondering if it’s some sort of a seasonal thing and if so why that is. It’s really getting in the way of things. The migraines themselves aren’t even all that painful, I’ve had worse and I know people have worse, but they’re really energy draining and make me feel kind of generally sick, so I’m effectively unable to do much of anything while having a migraine, especially that it often gets worse when I try to force myself to do something more ambitious that requires getting out of bed, and they’re more difficult to get rid of than they used to be. The combination of migraine medication and good sleep, or sometimes even just a usual NSAID if I’d take it early enough, used to be enough to get rid of the problem in one day, occasionally it would linger for some longer time but that was rare, while now the meds help rather rarely and it’s a bit like a lottery, at least I haven’t found any connections as to when and why they work or don’t work, and I need much more rest and sleep to make myself feel any better, I also don’t want to take the meds too often. I know it’s like this or even worse for many people who have migraines, but mine were generally easier to handle before so the situation is new to me and I’m feeling a bit clueless, and like I said frustrated because they often get in the way just when I want to do something productive. And as for the tired part, well I had a migraine yesterday until about noon today, and I’m still feeling a bit tired and sluggish afterwards.
  • A little stressed/worried, and a little looking forward to Christmas. Christmas is typically a stressful period for me, as it is for many of us. I don’t really know yet what it will be like for us this year, as we don’t have any specific plans, so typically I’m feeling rather apprehensive. But it’s also generally a nice occasion and I hope it’ll be at least a bit fun and not just stressful like it was last year.
  • ย ย  Desperate for a new faza. But that’s been the case for quite some time now and you probably all know about it, I don’t have anything to add to this really.

And I think that’s it. My day, apart from the migraine earlier, has been okayish, and it’s now coming to an end, so I’m not really anticipating anything today except for hoping for a decent night’s sleep. And my state of being feels a bit sluggish, a bit jumpy, but overall rather neutral at the moment.

How are you feeling? Do let me know. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Song of the day (4th December) – Ah*nee*mah ft. Diane & David Arkenstone – “

It’s Advent, so time for some Christmassy music. I picked something new and that came out just this year, a couple weeks ago I guess, from two artists I know because I used to listen to them a lot in my new age-y phase so to put it. They are David and Diane Arkenstone, a couple who do a sort of fusion between new age and world music, but as far as I’m aware they have also composed music for quite a few games and appear to be mostly known for that. However especially Diane is very diverse in her musical interests. She has an educational background in opera singing, but has also tried doing heavy metal and some other genres which are totally different from what she’s doing now. I was never a huge fan of their music, but they do have some nice music that I liked listening to. Now I do it a lot less though as their music simply doesn’t really speak to me anymore. I really liked this interpretation of the traditional carol however. I have no idea what or who Ah*nee*mah is, but because both Diane and David are very fruitful musicians and have created or collaborated in a lot of different new age musical projects, I suppose that might be just the name of one of them.

My Inner Mishmash Readership Award #2! And the winners are… *don’t read if you got a pingback and like surprises* :D

Hi all you lovely people you! ๐Ÿ™‚

Phew, it’s been quite an intense week! I know it’s super late compared to last year and am very sorry for that, but finally, it’s time to reveal this year’s winners of

My Inner Mishmash Readership Award!

My Inner Mishmash Readership Award (or MIMRA for short) is an idea that I came up with last year, where each year, around Christmas, I award three of my

most involved, insightful and engaged readers of My Inner MishMash as a way of expressing my gratitude and appreciation for their presence on My Inner MishMash, and also simply as a way to have some more fun on here for all of us, pre Christmas. Of course I do appreciate every single reader of my blog and am so happy for all of you who are stopping by, but quite obviously I can’t award everyone who visits my blog, so in a way this is also a more symbolic way of appreciating all of my readers.

So, without further ado, I am exxxtremely exxxcited to announce that the winners of this year’s My Inner Mishmash Readership Award are… *applause, drumrolls, fanfares, confetti etc.*

Meg of Where Good Advice Happens,

(and this is her second MIMRA)

Ashley Leia of Mental Health @ Home

(and this is her second MIMRA as well)

and

Astrid and her whole system Astridetal of A Multitude of Musings

.

Meg and Ashley are literally as lucky as they can be, because you can only win MIMRA twice in a row! Although Sofi is trying to convince me that it should be thrice, so… I don’t know… we’ll see next year I guess. But you can lemme know what you think of this idea if you want.

Thank you so very much to all of you, the winners, for being such engaged readers of My Inner Mishmash, such great supporters of Misha and me and such cool people overall! And thank you to all of my regular readers for all their extremely valuable input! ๐Ÿ™‚ And HUGE thanks to my Mum for helping me with this whole thing, brainstorming ideas with me, designing the cards etc. because it just wouldn’t work out without her! ๐Ÿ™‚ Last, but by no means least, thanks to Sofi, thanks to whom there are some pics with this post that you can enjoy. Sofi has made some of them and then today has helped me a lot with selecting the photos for this post and captioning them. After she captioned them, somehow I lost or couldn’t find her very descriptive captions after transferring the photos

This MIMRA has just been sent out and I had no clue which photo was which and got really annoyed and was about to give up on the whole photo thing, but eventually Sofi helped me once again change their names to something more descriptive than img0185 so that I knew what I was posting, lol, and do alt texts properly. All that despite she’s having a really awful day today because she’s sick.

I sincerely hope it’ll arrive to people at least very shortly before Christmas, but since I sent it out almost a whole month later than I did last year (guess I’ll have to start the preparations in August rather than in September next year ๐Ÿ˜€ ) because of the delay with the cards company and some things that have been going on for me personally as well as for my Mum, and since the mail in many countries is overloaded due to Covid and people ordering a lot of stuff online, at least from what I’ve been hearing, it’s possible that, if that’s the case with the mail in your country, you may need to wait for your MIMRA a bit longer than that. Even without such complications, I remember that last year’s MIMRA for Meg was going very slow, but that’s probably because our mail here always tends to be slow with foreign mail for some reasoon, at least in my experience. ๐Ÿ˜€

As a compensation, the MIMRA packages this year have a bit more content than the year before, but to be honest it wasn’t really even planned. Here are some pics (but with the MIMRA boxes closed, so you can’t take a peek in this year, ha, ha, more details about the content later)

Misha is sitting on the stack of grey MIMRA cartboard boxes which are next to my wardrobe. He is looking at you.

Misha sitting on the MIMRA boxes, which are decorated with three Christmas baubles from Sofi's tree, one bauble is grey and the other two are white.

And here’s a little bonus for all of you who like to look at Misha and often ask me about his pics, just because I had one more at hand and because it’s a special, exceptional day when images are being posted on this blog, lol, though it’s unrelated to the award itself.

Misha stretched out on the sheep skin on my bed.

I won’t be telling you what’s exactly in the MIMRAs, I myself am not a huge enthusiast of surprises but I figure most people do like them, but to give you a bit of an idea, there are some Polish edible goodies in there. My goal with MIMRA is to introduce people to new, yummy things that are only a thing in Poland, because I think it’s fun to see how each country has its own candy and stuff. And we generally have a lot of yummy food here. Only it’s so universalised these days (plus I myself haven’t been abroad much which may be an important factor here as well) that sometimes it’s hard to tell what’s Polish and what’s just somehow adapted or something. Last year’s MIMRA winners may remember that one of the things in the award package were biscuits with chocolate and jelly which are called Delicje over here. I was absolutely convinced they are a Polish thing, until last year’s MIMRA winner

Carol Anne of Therapy Bits, and some of the littles in her system,

enlightened me that they are also in Ireland, under the name of Jaffa Cakes, and they do appear to be in many other countries as well! So this year I did a bit more research and hopefully these things are actually exclusively Polish, or at least you haven’t tried them before, but even more importantly that you will like them. However Meg told me that she really enjoyed these Jaffa Cakes and she can’t get them anywhere and would like them in the MIMRA again. I originally didn’t plan it to be so, but because I found something that I thought could be a fun thing for Ashley and Astrid but maybe not necessarily for Meg, she did get a package of them eventually. Ashley and Astrid have something else instead. I’ll just say that it’s something to have a bath with, and I remembered that Meg can’t have baths with such bath products so I think it’s fair enough.

I hope you guys will like your MIMRAs and enjoy them at least as much as I did making them, and that they’ll bring some happiness to you for the Christmas time. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

I’m back! Merry Christmas! ๐Ÿ˜„

Hiya people, and pets, and everyone in between! ๐Ÿ™‚

Just a short note to let you know that my new computer has arrived on Friday and since then I was very busy setting it up (with tremendous help from Olek without which I’d be completely lost), and I’m still very slowly catching up on everything and even slower getting used to all the novelty and change, which is not always only positive, although it’s definitely much better to have a new computer than not to have any. It’s been causing me a lot of distress and anxiety, resulting in excessive nail biting thanks to which I’ve apparently got something called paronychia – an annoingly sore, swollen and throbbing finger – but it’s slowly and gradually getting better, I mean the anxiety. It will probably take some time before I’ll write some more concrete posts.

But most of all, me and Misha would like to wish all of you a very happy happy Christmas. I hope it will be a very wonderful and joyful time for you during which you can do lots of cool things, spend quality time with your family, or perhaps recharge and have time just for yourselves. I hope Christmas will fill your hearts with joy and hope and make you feel that your life is meaningful. ๐Ÿ™‚ Misha says he wishes you lots of delicious food and relaxation time and hopes it will be the cosiest Christmas ever for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

I also want to thank all those of you who read my blog and who were emailing me when I was away from the blogosphere, I appreciate it so very much and it’s been a huge help for me to get through that, you’re all really great friends! ๐Ÿ™‚ If I didn’t get back to someone it’s either because my Braille-Sense was freezing or didn’t display it.

Enya – “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”.

Hi people! ๐Ÿ™‚

Perhaps you remember that I was sharing a lot of Enya’s music last year around Christmas with you. I was sure I must have shared this song, but looks like I haven’t, so I think it’s the right time to do it now, since this is primarily an Advent hymn! And I think in Enya’s version it sounds so extremely beautiful. Both full of some silent, secret euphoria, as well as nostalgia. I hope you like it too. ๐Ÿ™‚

Kate Rusby – “Little Jack Frost”.

Hi guys! ๐Ÿ™‚

So it’s Advent, and Christmas is coming, so we can listen to our favourite Christmas music again! This is one of my personal absolute winter classics. And Jack Frost is one of my favourite characters in European folklore. He has arrived here for good as it seems, so I am welcoming his with this lovely little song, hoping you will like it too. Kate Rusby is also one of my most favourite English folk singers, she’s really amazing! I love her voice and her accent, most people who know her seem to love her accent haha, and she does this song so very well. It just makes my brain melt. ๐Ÿ™‚