So, we are now rushing headlong into the madness that is known as Christmas.

I've never been 'into' Christmas, despite having my birthday on Christmas Eve (that's right, another few hours and I might have been called Noel). My family are not what you'd call 'close knit' and we don't live in each others pockets. It's a case of knowing that each of us is just on the other end of a 'phone should we need each other. In day's gone by, on the odd occasion that you'd find us all occupying the same space at the same time, it'd be at our folk's house. Now that they are no longer around though, we only ever get together for a brief few hours one day before Christmas to exchange gifts. So that's what is going on at the moment. The logistics of this annual event is currently being orchestrated by one of my sisters. She 'phones back and forth, checking and cross checking available dates with us until we all fit into place on the right one. It's kind of like waiting for the stars to be in the correct alignment.

The other major event in my life, the office move, is casting an ominous shadow over any festive cheer that I might have. Most of my work colleges are really troubled by the thought of this move. Some are in denial, some are depressed, most are just miserable.

Because of this upheaval I'm still trying to sort out how my studio visits will fit into the working week. I could really do with a big Lottery win or finding a generous benefactor to fund my dreams. Neither are looking too imminent. Perhaps father Christmas will pay me a visit with a big, fat cheque.

So I'm doodling when I can but, to be honest, the wind has kind of gone out of my sails. This was the last thing I drew, a sketch of Sir Ian Mckellan which I posted on Skineart last week.

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