Twelve Carols of Christmas: Second Carol

Hello!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas yesterday and a fantastic Boxing Day today.

I am pleased to say I have had quite a few books for Christmas, I will share more later in the week.

Here is my second carol of my Twelve Carols of Christmas. This is a personal favourite of mine but this year sadly was the first year my church did not sing it, since I have been there.

This is a 15th Century English carol but sadly I do not know who wrote the words.

 

Coventry Carol

Lully, lulla,

thou little tiny child,

by by, lully lullay.

 

O sisters too,

how may we do

for to preserve this day

this poor youngling,

for whom we do sing

by by, lully lullay?

 

Herod the king,

in his raging,

charged he hath this day

his men of might,

in his own sight,

all young children to slay.

 

That woe is me,

poor child for thee!

and ever morn and day,

for thy parting

neither say nor sing

by by, lully lullay!

 

Lully, lulla,

thou little tiny child,

by by, lully lullay,

 

Happy Reading!

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Twelve Carols of Christmas: First Carol

Hello!

Today is officially the first day of Christmas and the twelfth day of Christmas is the 5th January.

I have decided to celebrate the Twelve Days of Christmas with a Christmas Carol each day. So here is my first Carol. This Carol is traditionally sung to the tune Sussex Carol, this tune is special to me because my husband and myself had it at our wedding, so this carol will always have a special place in my heart.

 

On Christmas night all Christians sing

On Christmas night all Christians sing

To hear the news the angels bring,

On Christmas night all Christians sing

To hear the news the angels bring,

News of great joy, news of great mirth,

News of our merciful King’s birth.

 

Then why should we on earth be sad,

Since our Redeemer made us glad,

Then why should we on earth be so sad,

Since our Redeemer made us glad,

When from sin He set us free,

All for gain our liberty.

 

When sin departs before His grace,

Then life and health come in its place;

When sin departs before His grace,

Then life and health come in its place;

Angels and we with joy may sing,

All for to see the new-born King.

 

All out of darkness we have light,

Which made the angels sing this night;

All out of darkness we have light,

Which made the angels sing this night;

‘Glory to God and peace to men,

Now and for evermore. Amen.’

 

Traditional

 

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Tidings: A Christmas Journey by Ruth Padel (Book Review)

Tidings: A Christmas Journey by Ruth Padel

9781784741068

About the author

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Ruth Padel is a prize-winning poet, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and Reader in Poetry at King’s College London. Her most recent collections include Darwin: A Life in Poems on her great-great-grandfather Charles Darwin, The Mara Crossing on migration and immigration, and Learning to Make an Out in Nazareth on the Middle East. She lives in London, the place where she was born.

Blurb

It’s Christmas Eve and on this enchanted night Charoum, the Angel of Silence, can speak. As night turns to day, he unfolds a resonant story of a little girl, a homeless man and a fox…

In the tradition of Charles Dickens and Dylan Thomas, Tidings takes us on a journey into the heart of Christmas, showing us celebrations down the ages and across the globe – as dawn sweeps from East Australia to Bethlehem, from London to the Statue of Liberty in New York.

This is Christmas in all its magic, reminding us that it is a time not only of good tidings, but of loneliness and longing, compassion and connection.

Beautifully illustrated and exquisitely musical, Tidings is a poem to be read out loud and cherished.

Review

Wow, what a beautiful book, I am so pleased I bought this book. This book is absolutely stunning and I think it will be become a Christmas tradition to read it every Christmas in my house. It took me less than an hour to read and I could not put it down and afterwards I could not wait to tell my husband about this beautiful book I had just finished.

This is the first work by Ruth Padel that I have ever read and it will not be my last. I loved how it used the carols from the children’s church service in the poem and it was beautifully entwined together. I also loved how reminiscent of Charles Dickens the poem’s story is, it reminds us that Christmas is not just about celebrating but also about remembering that there are people out there that do not find Christmas a time of celebration but of loneliness, hunger, fear and bad memories.

The contrast between the homeless man and the little girl is brilliant. The little girl is wondering if Father Christmas got her letter about the puppy she wants, her life is full of safety, happiness, love and wanting for nothing. The homeless man is full of memories he wishes to forget. He’s hungry, unwashed, unloved and only has one friend in the world, a little fox.

This book is beautiful and if you only want to read one festive book this year or next year I fully recommend this one. I have already been recommending it to friends and family. It is definitely a festive 5 out of 5 Dragons.

Purchase Links

Waterstones

Book Depository

 

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Fourth Sunday of Advent

Yay! It is the last Sunday before Christmas! I have played the organ, flute and saxophone today for a beautiful Carols by Candlelight service and a morning service that was done like a Christmas morning service so all in all I have played a lot of carols today. I have loved it!

One of the carols we did today was Love Came Down at Christmas by Christina Rossetti it really is beautiful and I absolutely love it so I have decided to share it with you all.

 

Love Came Down at Christmas

 

Love came down at Christmas,

love all lovely, Love divine;

love was born at Christmas,

star and angels gave the sign.

 

Worship we the Godhead,

love incarnate, Love divine;

worship we our Jesus:

but wherewith for sacred sign?

 

Love shall be our token,

love be yours and love be mine,

Love to God and all men,

love for please and gift and sign.

 

Christina Rossetti

 

Happy reading!

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The Nutcracker illustrated by Niroot Puttapipat (Mini Book Review)

The Nutcracker by E. T. A Hoffmann, retold by Kate Davies, illustrated by Niroot Puttapipat

Blurb

A beautifully illustrated retelling of The Nutcracker, capturing the magic of the ballet and the excitement of Christmas Eve. Join Clara and the Nutcracker Prince on a journey to the land of sweets, brought to life in a spectacular pop-up finale.

Review

Every Christmas I read a different version of The Nutcracker, this does mean I have quite a few different versions of The Nutcracker in my house now. This year’s choice is a little children’s version which is very abridged with beautiful illustrations and a stunning pop up illustration at the end.

I must admit I did miss a great deal of the story but understand why it had been shortened in such a way. The other thing I loved was how the story flowed so well, even though elements of the story were missing it did not make the story disjointed in any way.

I thoroughly enjoyed this little book and highly recommend it to children and adults. However, care needs to be taken with the pop up illustration as it is very delicate and could easily be damaged. I give this little book a massive 5 out of 5 Dragons.

Purchase links

Book Depository

Waterstones

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Friday Poetry: Clare Bevan

Hello!

This week’s chosen poem is by Clare Bevan and I chose it because I have had a lot of students excited about acting in their school nativity plays.

 

Just Doing My Job

I’m one of Herod’s Henchmen.

We don’t have much to say,

We just charge through the audience

In a Henchman sort of way.

 

We all wear woolly helmets

To hide our hair and ears,

And wellingtons sprayed silver

To match our tinfoil spears.

 

Our swords are made of cardboard

So blood will not be spilled 

If we trip and stab a parent

When the hall’s completely filled.

 

We don’t look VERY scary,

We’re almost small and shy,

And some of us wear glasses,

But we give the thing a try.

 

We whisper Henchman noises

While Herod hunts for strangers,

And then we all charge out again

Like nervous Power Rangers.

 

Yet when the play is over

And Miss is out of breath

We’ll charge like Henchmen through the hall

And scare our mums to death.

 

Clare Bevan

 

Happy Reading

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