Thursday 7 January 2021

Not Letting Go


The Pipistrellos aren't sticking to the Hard Rules ...

Twelfth Night has passed.

And Epiphany.

Will we wait until Old Twelfth Night, the 17th?

Or shall we push on until Candlemas this year?

... And nor are these neighbours

I saw on a walk yesterday that we're not the only ones pondering this weighty decision.

Down with the rosemary, and so

Down with the bays and mistletoe;

Down with the holly, ivy, all

Wherewith ye dress'd the Christmas hall;

That so the superstitious find

No one least branch there left behind;

For look, how many leaves there be

Neglected there, maids, trust to me,

So many goblins you shall see.

 - Robert Herrick, "Ceremony Upon Candlemas Eve", C17th

Image credits: Flying With Hands


  1. The neighbours' wrought iron is just beautiful!

  2. I overlooked one huge gold bauble, that is still hanging in the Sitting Room. It'll go today. I've just noticed some dried-up Holly too.

  3. Your wreath looks like a year-round decoration. Wreaths are popular for all seasons in the U.S.--even wreaths of faux tulips for spring. Why not? They dress up a door. So you should get dispensation. As long as there aren't shiny red pretend presents or holly or other ho-ho-ho accessories, bien sûr.

  4. Hels: Three storeys of the confection!

    Cro: One of the joys of a tinsel tree is that it won't die on you by Epiphany. All baubles still present and accounted for on my tree :)

    ToF: Thank you for the dispensation. I don't want to tempt goblins, nor a reason to dust it, so it probably won't stick around for the Candlemas deadline ... Thanks for the Articles of Interest podcast recommendation, I did enjoy it. Oh, we've just watched the first episode of "Ten Percent" on Netflix. Very funny!

  5. Today I heard a similar message given by an English Heritage representative suggesting that we should follow in the footsteps of our medieval ancestors and continue to deck our halls with greenery up until Candlemas. He suggested that following the year we’ve had, we deserve to keep the Christmas cheer going a little longer.
    The tradition that it is bad luck to keep decorations up after Twelfth Night and the Epiphany is a modern invention.

  6. Mine are all down except for the tree (faux - so won't die) in the gazebo - just left the white lights on and it is so pretty in the dark, dreary evenings.
    Wreaths popular here year round. Amazing wrought iron - you must have been in an older part of town to see that, definitely historic.

    Happy, healthy full of joy New Year dear. Even if we have to go search for the joy we must do it or I'm afraid we will fade away wasting the remaining years.

    Hugs - Mary

  7. The Christmas decor in our basement is still in place because I haven't had time to put it away. There's no rush when we're the only ones seeing it.

  8. Rosemary: It's interesting that superstitions and traditions really go hand-in-hand but that when you dig down, all the so-called rules for living have changed and changed about many times before. I hope English Heritage get a few takers this year - I watch their youtube videos; that Mrs Crocombe has quite a following.

    Mary: Fairy lights in the dark are always uplifting - the gazebo probably needs a bit of cheer in the winter ... Yes, there's still a lot of Victorian-era architecture in the inner parts of the city, not always looking its best, I might add, but the complete row of terraces in the street behind ours is rather magnificent ... Joy is always there to be found and fading away is not an option! xx

    Loree: When everything gets put away, I find there is a distinct lack of colour about the place for a while before things return to normal. It's funny how the festive trimmings take over like a big personality in the room.

  9. Candlemas! It gives me something to look forward to.

  10. Ur-spo: I've not bought the appointments diary for this year yet but must get onto it pronto, for I've decided I shall be saving the Great Tree Disassembly for Candlemas after all, and would like to put something in the diary for February. Glad to see you've pencilled it in, too!

  11. I always leave something from Christmas and then it has to go in a drawer as the rest is in the loft !!! That neighbours wrought iron is amazing .... I’m drooling over it 🤤 XXXX

  12. Jackie: The near-mythic loft - vying with the Car Boot Sale as the preeminent source of Antiques Roadshow's unearthed treasures! ... The variety of wrought iron around these parts is truly astonishing. I cannot imagine what weighty tomes the ironmongers' catalogues must have been in the Victorian era. xx

  13. My indoor greenery and decor is put away for another year. Outside everything is still looking good. This year, I hung wreaths on random tall pines in my woodlands. When walking the woodland paths, you come upon an unsuspected Christmas wreath. Somehow this brings me and my neighbors joy. I also strung fairy lights on my 15 foot tall slender Korean pine tree nearer the house. I will keep everything in place, just because it is cheerful.

  14. Susan: Wreaths in the woodlands does sound rather fetching. And I'm always a fan of a touch of fairy lights

  15. As Hels says, what amazing iron-work. Little such craftwork bothered with on buildings nowadays.

  16. Andrew: And, of course, what's even more amazing was the wide variety of styles available to choose from for our then tiny population, in such stark contrast to the situation today. Boring functionality seems the order of the day now, reflecting a host of reasons - principally cost, I expect, and lack of choice - but I can't help feeling it's as simple as a lack of imagination.


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