January Blues

January,  the month of new resolutions, new starts, new promises, new, new, new.

Christmas has come and gone for another year.  All the partying is over. A busy couple of weeks from the 8th December when the city centre is crowded with shoppers to the 6th January when little Christmas is celebrated.   Over the past 3 years, I have celebrated this date 6th January with my girlfriends in  recognition of Nollaig na mBna.  This is when the menfolk look after the house and the family so that  the women can have a party among themselves.  The excuse was to use up all the left over pudding and cake and drink.  It was traditionally celebrated in the country more so that in the big smoke.  We thought it was a good idea to start our own Nollaig na mBna in my house and it has been great so far.  There isn’t a better way to start off the month of January than having a group of female friends over for a bite to eat, a drink or two and a good old chat.

The Christmas decorations are put away and the place looks bare.  It takes a while to get used to normality again in the house.  Great plans are made for the weeks and months ahead.  The weather is cold and damp but there is an expectancy in the air.  2014 here we come.  January is a great month to start something new, to give it a go, even if you tried the same thing last January and failed.  I love to see all the walkers out in force, determined to lose those pounds that stuck to them while they enjoyed the festive season.  It is like an army on the move.  The supermarkets are full of people buying healthy options and lots and lots of fruit and veg.  Spirits are high, recipes are swapped and we get through these first few weeks that can sometimes be tough on us.   Those who are lucky enough can escape to sunnier climates for a few weeks to get over the hurdle and into the spring.  The rest of us scan the travel websites, or look through the glossy brochures planning the holiday in the sun in 5 or 6 months time.

January can be as good as you make it.  Enjoy the newness of it and make it count.

9 thoughts on “January Blues”

  1. An accurate summation Caroline of where we’re all at on the 13th Jan.! Thankyou for reminding us to enjoy this month and its “newness”. Alot of us approach this month as one to be “endured” not enjoyed. But it is a great opportunity for a fresh start and for spring-cleaning our lives.
    Is it only the Irish who ask “How did you get through the Christmas?” It’s as if it’s a burden or chore! Well I guess putting Christmas together for the family probably can be that for the hardworking mna na hEireann. One day in recognition and as a mark of gratitude for that is not “a big ask”, as the expression is!
    “Good night sisters” (Nell McCafferty)!


  2. Mary, in her blog,wrote about her grandmother and lost skills and how things change over the generations. I often laugh at the lads here in the house when they look at me with bemused faces when I mention something from my childhood and can’t believe they hadn’t heard of whatever it was I mentioned. Yet the first time I heard about Nollaig na mBna was last week on Newstalk and now on your blog, so its not just the kids. Too long in the big smoke


    1. Yes Danny , “allegedly” you’ve been in Dublin since 1864!
      You’ve seen some changes, I’d say. That women’s liberation movement fad in the 60s tho’ go over your head? Can you remember the 60s? Altho’ they say if you can remember the 60s you probably weren’t really there.
      I’d love to hear your reminiscences of 1916. That was a time I’ve often heard you say:-
      “When men were men, and women were in the kitchen or mindin’ de childer.”
      Allegedly they were also in Cumann na mBan, multi-taskin’! You may not have heard that tho’ on Newstalk on account of the gunfire in de G.P.O.
      By the way you look great for your age – you are obviously well-minded by the women in your life!


  3. It’s always great to read you Caroline – so much positiv vibe in this post somehow January, February, March – all year can be as good as you make it.. with weather we have to caunt for a luck 😉
    New year resolutions always look better on a begging of the year – barly remembered on the end 😉 so true..
    I need to stuck with mines so hard as I was last year 😉
    Best of luck Caroline in January, February, March…. ,,, January and on and on ;))))


  4. To change! them Zen Buddhists have it sussed, ‘when you say it is already it isn’t’. And the other one I like is…the only thing permanent is impermanence. Good work Caroline. Me = ur fan!


  5. Well said Caroline!
    We celebrated 6th Jan as well as the French tradition of “Les Rois”. Another excuse for making a cake… I know!
    Jan and Feb are way too early, but if the weather is good, March could see us getting back to the allotment… so I’m planning already, going through the seeds collected last year, and planning what to plant and where. Can’t wait for Nature to wake up. But I have to really!
    Happy New Year!


  6. Hi Caroline,
    Love your blog. For me though I don’t make new year resolutions in January. I find I have more energy and motivation to make changes in my life in February. For me I find that once day becomes longer and the mornings brighter I automatically know the changes I would like to make in my life. Even the sound of the birds in the morning in February put a spring in my step and motivate me to make these changes. So my new year begins in February.


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