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111 (all the ones…)

(The intrepid ‘explorer’ returns – heralding feverish blogging to catch up…!)

Sunday.  Bit of a hectic one this week with preparation and packing for the conference.  But it was still good…

Led praise in church this morning which was fun and it all went well – its great when you have musicians who can just follow your lead without any practice!  Not ideal, but handy nonetheless!

A late evening coffee with my housemate in a still-clean house!

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All the 8’s – 88

A homecoming to my home from home.  I’m so thankful to be able to say I have two places I’m comfortable in to call home (and home home).

Today I felt so privileged at the insight the whole 365 thing gives me into the lives and loves of others.  I loved, loved, loved reading about the thankfulness which people felt this Christmas.  Particularly that some were tinged with the bittersweetness of people missed.  Again, not because I’m a sadist but rather that this whole thing really does help us see the small things we’d usually overlook, or at least never name.   Plus, the pain somehow validates the record of the pleasure – rather than it just being a trite ‘I loved today’.

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87

Another lie-in to be grateful for and a brunch of bananas on toast – one of those simple pleasures we often forget!  With real butter too!  yum yum…

A late afternoon jaunt to Junction One with mumsie and a Chinese feast on return!

A catch up with church friends over a game of Cranium (I am SUCH a rulebook lover…) and victory was MINE!!  Well, ok – ours.  Then an unexpected late night chick flick with mum and sister no 2 accompanied by crisps and dips… hurray for Christmas!

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86

I sat in my jammies til close-to-obscene time today and revelled in the fact that I could do it!  Holidays rock.  I also enjoyed loading up music onto my brand-spanking new ipod.

I felt a measure of pressure in catching up my Christmas 365 days, because of the incredible stuff others have recorded – made me feel all fuzzy and warm inside!  The pure joy of friendship expressed by hearts full of gratitude.  It is thus that I add my highlight of today: an evening spent with my bestest friend in the whole wide world.  Banter, board games, honesty and acceptance without terms.  Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude….

Getting to sleep in a real bed after two nights on the sofa.  It was in the room where I spent the latter of my teenage years and as I turned out the lights, I was pleasantly surprised by the starlight of glow-in-the-dark stars I’d put there years before and forgotten about.

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83

I’ve had one of those days where up until the waning moments of the day you think you’ll have trouble doing a 365.  But tonight I am so grateful for friends who allow me to practice community with them even with the imminent arrival of the artist currently known as ‘Bump’.  Grateful for company on a ‘all-my-housemates-have-disappeared-for-Christmas-and-I’m-sick-of-being-alone-in-the-house’ kinda day.  Grateful for comfortable silences between stimulating conversation on all levels of the depth spectrum.  Grateful to have somewhere to voice endless ridiculous nit-picky questions without them feeling they have to have all the answers.

I’m thankful for 365s that give historicity and scope to otherwise insignificant daily occurences.  Thankful for the beauty of writing and creativity and freedom of expression.

Thankful that tomorrow is Christmas Eve and I get to go home home.

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75

A much-needed lie-in (later somewhat diminished by a late night justified only by a great selection of cheese and some awesome port) and a potter around the shops.  Christmas shopping in a small town is just so much less hassle-y, its lovely.  Except it woulda skinned yeh.

A night spent in alone – unwelcome at first but it was actually great.  Apart from the fact that Leon beat Rhydian.  I’m disturbed that I care.  So much so I even voted twice for the strangely attractive Welshman. 

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These are scary things to admit – port and boy-next-door welshmen… hmmm… I wonder did my birthday actually tip me over the other side of the hill, or is it just that only young people think those things are indicative of crinkly-hood…?

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70

Being able to hit the snooze button to delay getting up by 40 mins!  A team Christmas outing to the Belfast Wheel (I heart Belfast) and lunch at the Christmas Continental market.  Spit-roasted hog was good – until a few hours later… It bites back.  Being among people with whom I can be myself, and who ‘get’ me.  Or at least they make a good show of it!

Hearing a whole whack of people (well, its all relative) are excited about our upcoming conference and have actually sent forms off!!!  Good banter with good people and the dream of TWO Coleraine students as Relay workers next year…

Also finding people who are good at caring about my birthday and so getting a dinner invite for tomorrow!

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