Loyal Greetings

Today Jackie wrapped Christmas presents and posted the first batch of cards I had written out.

For all my readers here is the sole surviving printed one I made 64 years earlier;

and the original produced on white scraper board.

This evening Jackie dined on the last of the pasta arrabbiata with half a glass of Hoegaarden, and I finished the lamb jalfrezi and pilau rice accompanied by Chateau Montviel Pomerol 2016.


  1. Well, well, even 64 years ago, you have a nice “coup de crayon”. How would one translate that? A nice pencil hand? Do you still sketch?
    My compliments on still writing Xmas cards. I must confess we don’t “no more”.
    Now, a little Pommerol? My, my? that’s a good one. How does it compare to a Lalande de Pommerol?
    (If you’re drinking that now, can’t imagine what you’ll have for Christmas. ?)

          1. I just realized I’ve been hit by my double consonants syndrome. There is a small village called Pommeral somewhere in the Southeast. But you wrote Pomerol, and I was puzzled. Yiu were right. Cheers. ?

  2. What a really lovely card – totally timeless.
    I have never seen white scraper board. I do recall how difficult it was to use the black variety!
    Good wishes returned to you both – and all!

  3. What a beautiful (now well-seasoned) (64 years, wowza!) card! A treasure to keep forever!
    Your drawing is wonderful and captures THE reason for the season! 🙂
    (((HUGS))) 🙂

  4. How beautiful is your card and such lovely handwriting too.
    I am ashamed to say I haven’t written my cards yet. This year I am late and unorganised. Hopefully, card writing will be my tomorrow task, and Friday I will begin gift wrapping.

    My two older girls used to help with gift wrapping but too many of their own now.

  5. Simplicity always appeals, even in a Christmas card. Yours is perfect: the sort that would be displayed throughout the year, and not only at the holiday season.

  6. You are an artist by soul, and it remains indomitable. I am glad you have been publishing your daily chronicles allowing us to savour the produce of your fine craftsmanship day after day. Merry Christmas to you, Jackie, and all your loved ones!

  7. Wowzer! That is an impressive illustration. Really quite something. I may not send even one card this year. Might simply phone people as the few arrive. Such a turnaround to decades ago when I sent 60-70 with letters inside (No one wants to be friends with me any more hohohoho)

      1. Yes, so young. One could argue you had the time on your hands to perfect it. BUT! The innate talent! Even though your memoir stories explain how it came to be that talent had to take a back seat to “survival”, and that you have become/were sanguine and philosophical about life’s realities, there must be times you look at the high quality of your art – way beyond being ‘good at drawing’ – and feel a twinge that life could not have taken a different turn. Not a regret or denial of how it all panned out, but, a tinge of the “what ifs” would only be human, surely?

  8. Your card is impressive and ever so much nicer to receive than one drawn from a commercially produced pack. That said, we don’t send or receive cards anymore – more’s the pity. Like Garrulous Gwendoline, I used to send cards with letters inside to family and friends – real labour of love that took a lot of time. Handwritten letters became typed ones … with the post office becoming dysfunctional in combination with the popularity of electronic media, seasonal cards are no longer on sale. This must be a blow to the charities that used them as a source of income. I hope you and Jackie will enjoy a wonderful Christmas – as well as the Boxing Day feast!

  9. One of the things that struck me about your 15 year old self was the characterisation of the adorers, particularly the one in the foreground. I wonder what was your intention? It’s very skilfully done. I love the feathery technique in the shadows.

  10. Like you, Derrick, card writing has long been a habit. I like to get my cards out early. This year I sent the overrseas ones in a timely fashion, but then I did the others in dribbles… still worked on some today. It’s a long process because I like to personalize each one. Yours came today – much to our delight. Thank you so much, my friend. Merry Christmas!

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