With all the mild weather we have had through most of November, it seems to have caught up on us all of a sudden! We have just come back from the Winter Fair at the Royal Welsh Agricultural Showground where the main crowd puller is the judging and auction of the sheep and beef cattle in prime condition. Such is the attraction that the auctioneer's voice is relayed across the showground so that those getting on with their Christmas shopping around all the stalls don't have to miss a beat! Welcome hot cuppas and mince pies flow freely from the various feed merchants to the onlookers. People come in their thousands, from all over Wales, to the big two day event, whatever the weather. This year about fifty cars were swamped in the bottom car park when the river overflowed its banks. Oops!
This coming Sunday we will be dressing up the children for an impromptu Nativity during a carol service in one of the rural chapels, as we will the following Sunday in another chapel. These are usually well attended by the local community.
On Christmas Eve in a village in South Breconshire they have a popular Nativity Pageant through the village, calling in at the two pubs and finishing in our farming friends' barn for carols among the animals. Last year this attracted 250 people!
One of the Anglican churches is doing a Nativity Labyrinth which will give opportunity to reflect.
On our family front, our brave new little
granddaughter and her family have been through a lot since she was born in mid October. At four days old she went to hospital for a few days with bronchiolitis, spending time in an oxygen tent and on drips. Then a fortnight later she was rushed into hospital after what turned out to be a bleed into the brain fluid. She was later transferred to Alder Hey Children's Hospital where they kept her for a week, doing lots of scans, X-rays and blood tests for both that and severe reflux as she finds it difficult to keep her feeds down. She is home now and improving, but still under Alder Hey. She's such a happy little girl when she's not feeling poorly. Her little brother who has just turned two is coping well with all the upheaval although its not easy for him. Please keep them in your prayers.
If you would like to read more of our news during this year, please see our updates, with lots of photos, on www.prayerforbreconshire.blogspot.co.uk
May you all have a very special Christmas, be it quiet or bustling or somewhere in between.
Ifor and Penny