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  • Writer's pictureChristine Collister

And so we begin again ...

Updated: Jan 15

Blogpost No1 January 2023

Happy new year! I trust you had a delightful Christmas and New Year, spent with those you love and hold dear. Ours was very quiet though mine in particular, was punctuated occasionally with hollers of gasping delight at dipping in the cold Irish Sea. Crazy I may be but I’m also happy … for the most part.

Christmas, and my birthday seem so long ago already. Two weeks into a new year and I’m firmly pointing in a forward direction … well kind of. There are so many decisions ahead but so much to be done before those decisions can be reached with any confidence. As you know I have completed the writing, arranging, recording, mixing and mastering of 9 songs which strung together become an album/CD entitled “Children Of The Sea” - hurrah I hear you cheer! But now I have the complicated task of pulling together all the elements required to create a book chock full of beautiful artwork, stories, inspirations and song lyrics for said CD to be housed within. At this juncture I’m still fairly excited but also somewhat daunted by a this new adventure. There’s so much unknown … the visual delights of original artwork from … well I don’t quite know where yet. How will the stories fit with the artwork ? Have I mentioned there isn’t any yet?!! However … if I pause; take a deep breath; put a genuine smile on my face and exhale slowly … it all feels doable. Deep breath … and … smile.

Apart from these creative conundrums life, as we live it at this moment in time, goes on. With holidays come less social services which actually serve to deepen ones gratitude and appreciation for them. We only lost one day Christmas weekend again the following New Year week but it really makes a difference. We coped admirably! Mum was in turns filled with delight and disgust on Christmas Day morning. She was convinced I’d taken her away from her family and friends (Bob and I live with her in her home of 25 years) and was very unhappy in deed. “I can’t imagine what you were thinking! Why would you do such a thing?” There was no response to that, other than a blank rabbit-caught-in-the-headlights stare. Then my sister video-called so mum could open presents from her and all disgruntlement evaporated. The rest of the day was relatively glitch-free. We watched The Great Escape together … she managed to stay awake for most of it. Every time Steve McQueen was on screen she’d pipe up: “Oh that’s …” “Steve McQueen?” We’d offer … “Yes!” As I’m sure you realise he plays a major role in the film, so this was repeated many times. We saw it as extra entertainment! And so it was.

For anyone out there having to deal with Dementia at the moment there’s a wonderful website with amazing amounts of really helpful information that we’ve only recently looked at: I highly recommend it.

With all songs on Children Of The Sea now complete I thought I’d record a song specifically for each Blogpost this year. Mostly covers probably but there may be a few originals here and there. It’s an idea that may well fall flat on its face in February. At any rate I have one for this month if you’ll indulge me? This first one picked itself really … can you guess what it might be?

I have hardly been in the greenhouse these last few weeks so my poor bedraggled garlic and purple sprouting broccoli may well have given up altogether. I may venture out there before I post this and see how they are. If you don’t hear anything more about it … say a prayer for their valiant efforts?

Prayers are needed!

I have started knitting again! A simple crew necked sweater in black and white chunky knit. I just like typing … chunky knit! And I have 2 creative projects I have set myself which so far I’ve managed to fulfil … 1 is a 10 minute writing exercise which I’m doing for 40 days straight, along side a few friends so we can keep each other accountable. It works. The other is that I will draw or paint an image a day for the whole year. I’m not a visual artist at all so will not be sharing my attempts. I’m hoping to get over the fear of not being good enough. I’ve given myself permission to make the worst art ever! So far, though I'm living up to my very low expectations, I'm also having fun.

If you’ve ever wondered about starting a creative project there’s a wonderful writer: Natalie Goldberg, who wrote a fabulous book back in the 80s called “Writing Down The Bones” which is so inspirational. If you fancy writing more creatively get a hold of that book … it’s a real gem.

A delightful Podcast was shared on Manx Radio this week, conceived, recorded and edited by the ever-creative Christy DeHaven. It’s entitled “Stories from the sea”. Christy interviewed a veritable cornucopia of sea swimming enthusiasts here on the tiny isle, including yours truly, all waxing lyrical about the very addictive pastime of dipping in the sea … all year round! It’s a very listenable piece and really informative and gives a delightful taste of the joys of sea swimming. G’wan you know you want to! ;-)

Before I sign off I thought I'd share an old YT video of one of the songs from "Under Construction II". This was one of those songs inspired by artwork from artists from or living here on the Isle of Man ... and here I am many years later hoping my songs will inspire artists to create some visual delights. Now is that life imitating art or art imitating Life?

I have finally put a new CD into the online SHOP: Daphne's Flight Live from 2017. It is a wonderful reminder of our beautiful harmonious sound. I do miss our musical adventures but this is a lovely souvenir of those special times.

Thanks as always for taking the time to drop by and see what I've been up to. This year promises to be even speedier than the last ... in no time at all I'll be posting Blogpost No 2! Stay well, take care and keep rising above the turbulence!

Much love

Christine x

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