A year gone by

A most interesting year. It’s gone, but I look back today, the first of the New Year and celebrate with gratitude.

With love for those we lost.ITR-PCL-00045299

A beautiful, funny and sincere friend I met on WordPress – introduced by my dearest Jen – Thank you. A friend I never met face to face, but with whom I giggled endlessly, every time she posted, every time she talked about Colin Firth’s white shirt and my er, sincere affection for said shirt, in fact she would come up with what ifs… like if I was chopping and Colin Firth was watching, what would I do – we would talk about chocolate – she would pretend to grab mine and then take more because she loved it so much, and oh my we gabbed about Downton Abbey. We had much to say about story lines. Anna & Bates were a favorite topic. Once Upon a Time – I love this show and I enjoyed talking about where they would take the story, this happened a couple of times on a Sunday night between Once a Upon a Time and Downton Abbey. Most of all I cherish the few conversations we had about our daughters. She touched my heart.

I am thinking of my mother in-law, whom we just lost. It was only a week ago. We were altogether. She wasn’t. But I suspect it was her plan all along, even though, in this last year she couldn’t remember many of us. She wanted a united family at all times, good food, laughter, she wanted all of her children, her in-laws and all ten of her grandchildren to celebrate life every chance they got. She was humble, a brilliant mathematician( graduated with honors in math way back in 1948)  a teacher – beloved by many generations. My friends, my parents friends and many of her students are now celebrating her life. She welcomed me into the family last – my husband being her youngest. But she visited every chance she got, spent time with us, she was quiet, loving and full of wisdom. There was no idle chatter, when she spoke, it mattered. You listened. She always brought me chocolate. She knew. She had gifts but it was the chocolate that counted. She cooked with heart. She never forgot a birthday. We all loved her.

I celebrate with gratitude

the books, authors and plot lines that have inspired me to write, write and write some more. I intend to find my space and allow the words to flow.

dear friends in my life, some I have not met, except virtually, but feel as though I have known you forever – you know who you are. I have learned so much from you.

family – near and afar. My precious little family, my beautiful mum. I could not do without any of you.


while this particular loss is of the fictional kind,  it is heartfelt, I ached. Many of you will understand why I mourn. Well, I didn’t say I was sane did I? I miss Mark Darcy. I do. Colin Firth was made to sit down whilst the news was broken to him. I don’t understand it, I accept it, it has made my reviewing process slightly challenging. Um, Helen Fielding, wish you didn’t, but I know it was necessary.

To all my blog friends, I wish you the brightest of light, unending joy, passionate posts, delicious morsels of food and  much love.

Here’s to a Beautiful and Bountiful 2014 – Let the Year begin!


17 thoughts on “A year gone by

  1. This is lovely Shamz ~ your tribute to darling Katie ~ the memories of those you have lost your mum-in-law and also Mr. Darcy. I am glad I introduced you to Katie – for even in a short space of time she touched so many lives. Let the New Year begin ~ let us all find unending joy and much love. Thank you for being such a caring and beautiful friend and as I said hopefully one day we shall meet..we maybe with our walkers…but we shall meet.
    Love you and glad you are in my life.


    • Oh Jen, you’ve led me to so many lovely people. What a darling friend you have been. I really ought to write a tribute to you. You are always supportive of whatever I write and say and just having you in my life – makes it that much better.
      You know I will come back to Oz at least for a holiday again, we will meet before we’re with walkers
      we have to. There’s a lot of wine to drink and laughs to be had.
      Love you too! and so glad you are in my life.


  2. what a wonderful post – gratitude, a tribute, friendship, and fantasy – all rolled into one ) thanks to jen, who led me to you as well. best, beth


    • Tatu,
      You are in my thoughts as well. It has been a strange couple of days, a wonderful vacation and yet sad but happy at the same time, if it is possible.
      I am so glad you are my friend. I wish you, N and the little darlings lots of happiness as you await your beautiful bundle of joy. Not easy, and I know you are going through a lot. I am always here for you.
      Lots of love


  3. MM, what a beautiful tribute of a post. I hope you’re feeling better this week. It is always sad to lose a loved one, but somehow even harder during the holidays.

    Downton Abbey returns this weekend. Are you ready for it? (Did you watch the recent “Paradise,” by the way? I loved it. ) Loved what you said re Mark Darcy. I too was saddened by this. The book got poor reviews, and I wonder if Mark’s absence is the cause? Looking forward to catching up soon. Hugs!


    • I am feeling better Monica. Thank you my dear friend. Seeing my husband and his family celebrate their mom, happy that she is at peace, has been a remarkable experience. We are so glad we all went on a trip together, it is what their mom wanted above everything else.
      I am however, thinking of my mom too. I miss her terribly.

      I am so ready for Downton. It has been too long. No, I did not see Paradise? was it a BBC production?
      Hmmm, Mark Darcy not being there is like Colin Firth saying he hated playing any kind of Darcy. I am one of the few that loved the book, however. She( Fielding) handled her decision well. Although, I don’t think it was such a great idea to kill Mark off. Bridget and he belong together.
      I have been writing this review for months and nothing about it seems great. I will post it soon.


      • “Paradise” aired on Masterpiece and it was absolutely delightful, like a nicely packaged box of truffles. I loved the main characters. It’s set in a department store, based on a novel by Emile Zola. Happily, there will be another season coming.


  4. I am reading a book called Finding Colin Firth, which isn’t about Colin Firth at all, but his name comes up often. He seems to appeal to most women because of his intelligence, empathy, sexiness and sheer good looks. Of course we know nothing about what he is really like, we just assume we know him.


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