No New Year?s resolutions just lots of calendars
By ROBYN GRAY
In many households January 1 is accompanied by resolutions that may trigger guilt and or frustration, but hardly ever resolution.
At our place we put aside such agonies of priority for good behaviour, to be confronted with another choice - where to put the calendars we get for Christmas from all around the world.
This year yielded an especially interesting clutch, eight in all, and each of them will be hung with due consideration.
The Scottish Castles 2005 is an intriguing collection of pictures of old homes, some not so large, most obviously not having seen a butler or a valet for several hundred years.
The real estate is magnificent, position, position, sometimes on a precipice with views the length of Loch Ness or into the Grampian Montains. Most months will provide consolation that the odd jobs to be done around our place are not yet beyond us.
The Dundee and Angus 2005 collection remind us of places we love, of Arbroath smokeys and North Sea gulls. That will hang in some place that generates true sentiment, maybe the kitchen.
The Leprosy Mission calendar was gathered as a souvenir by a British friend travelling in India.
It is handmade paper, with stencilled illustrations on woven fabric squares, and for each month there are some 'astonishing facts about animals'.
For example in March, the animal is a donkey, and we learn that the placement of a donkey's eyes enables it to see all four feet at once.
In September we are to learn the giraffe can clean its ear with its 21-inch tongue. Each month has three astonishing facts about animals so this one should hang where it will fertilise the imagination.
An annual favourite is from Switzerland which also kindles fond memories of home-away-from-home.
This year's cover is the Matterhorn in the yellow spotlight of a summer dawn or dusk.
It's a big format with beautiful pictures.
Another gallery quality, large format production comes from the Tasmanian Wilderness Society. These pictures are so beautiful it is almost a crime to associate them with the mundane passing of time. Inspiration is on every page.
The other end of the ecological scale is the calendar from South Africa with fine botanical drawings of native flora.
This one also generates happy family memories and is small enough to fit in a long narrow space, and we have plenty of corners like that.
The chemist gave us a calendar showing a beautiful tropical bay in Queensland. It is full of interesting and relevant reminders of things taking place, like the New Year's Day public holiday and the Myanmar Independence Day and the Davenport Cup.
There is also space to write the essential memory aids that at the end of the year tell our life story: haircut, car rego, pay elec bill, etc etc . . . this calendar is essential to the organisation of a busy life and will be prominent all the year.
A printer also gave us a calendar, with similar, but not quite the same information.
This one gives sunrise and sunset times. It's picture also reminds me about New Year resolutions. It has a gorgeous view of one of our favourite value addeds - a Hunter Valley vineyard.