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Family walk
Cousins Mary and Anne   Norfolk Walk   Norfolk Walk
April icicles   April icicles   April icicles
Climbing hay bales   Climbing hay bales   Climbing trees

April 13th 2013


Another Wesley Roddie letter - The Quest for Happiness

The letter that I have put up on the site this month is perhaps not quite up to the same standard as some of his others but Wesley Roddie still comes up with some wonderful lines. When reading through it today, Mary suddenly burst out laughing. 'Who does this remind you of?' she asked Harry. ‘You laughed and played and sang at the Christmas party and on the following Monday when you went back to work your face wore the gloom of Styx and the devils of discontent had taken possession of you.’

'Dad!' Harry replied instantly. Not funny, I thought.

I prefer his comments regarding the relationship between work and happiness: ‘I can confidently say to you if you are seeking happiness this year: Get to work, use your talents and opportunities to their fullest, and a good time and good friends will follow as surely as day follows the night. It matters not what the work is – whether it is behind the counter, at the office desk, kitchen, or over the washtub, because even washing can bring happiness if you put your heart into it.'

I do not know how many times I have told the boys how much happiness it would bring their parents if they were to do the washing up more often, and without being asked. I now realise that I have been going about this the wrong way; I clearly need to let them know that they should be doing it to make themselves happy!

Wesley Roddie clearly believed that happiness is often to be found at home; this is the moral of the 'Blue Bird' story in his letter. He wrote a poem about this very subject entitled simply 'Home', which Robin Roddie, in his position as Head Archivist of the Methodist Historical Society of Ireland, came across very recently and kindly sent to me:

Home is not merely roof and room,
It needs something to endear it;
Home is where the heart can bloom,
Where there is some kind life to cheer it.
What is home with none to greet us?
Home is sweet and only sweet
Where there’s one we love to meet us.

Whilst on the subject of home, family and happiness, Mary, Harry, Alastair and I spent a most wonderful two days in Norfolk last weekend where we were joined on Saturday by Mary's cousin Anne Nicholls and her husband Patrick; the photographs above were taken during this short break. The weather was gorgeous - for the first time this year or so it seemed - but it was still very cold as you can seen from the spectacular icicles that formed overnight when the fine spray from a hole in a hosepipe left on overnight drenched the overhanging branches.



Ant Jackson
Ant with biscuit!   Ant Jackson   Ant Jackson school photo

April 11th 2013


Happy Birthday Ant!

Anthony, my younger brother, his wife Wendy and their two children, Rebecca and Robert, took the big step of emigrating to Perth on the Western coast of Australia several years ago and are now well settled in a beautiful house that they built themselves in the hills a few miles from the city centre. I say a big step because it is very long way away, visits are few and far between and we miss them greatly.

His 52nd birthday today has given me another chance to pore over some old photographs, play around with the morphing software again and put everything together into a short video. Most of the photographs in the slideshow below are some of those that I took when I paid them a surprise weekend visit to celebrate our mother's 85th birthday in October 2010; it is nice to have had an excuse to use them.




  © Copyright Thomas Jackson 2010