Today's first seasonal illustration is of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and their family at Christmas time. A suitably cheery image for Christmas Eve, I think. The second picture, at the bottom of this entry, is also from the Victorian era, but a little later in the period from the look of it. Very different from that above, but I like it too, and I hope you enjoy it.
Things have been very busy the last few days here at Stollen Central. Very little of it has to do with wargaming and painting toy soldiers I'm afraid. Still, we have had time for some walks, coffee at a nearby cafe, and late-night glasses of eggnog with nutmeg sprinkled on it, or a couple of Clementines. It's been a wonderful way to slow down a bit and usher in the long Christmas weekend.
The pre-Christmas festivities notwithstanding, however, I did manage to get in a couple of hours at the painting desk very late last night. I'm almost finished with the white coats, breeches, vests, and gaiters on the remaining dozen figures of the first comapnay of Flickenhoffer's Fusiliers, the final regiment (80 figures strong) in the Electorate of Zichenau's army. Drop by in a couple of days for a photo update or two.
In closing, I'd just like to thank those of you who have already sent your Christmas greetings either to the blog, or via e-mail. It's lovely to hear from friends and acquaintances like you around the world. Tomorrow, I'll take a break from the blog and spend the day with the Grand Duchess. We are planning on visiting a local Lutheran church this evening, which features a candle light service and singing late this evening at 11pm. We are also, I believe, asking a friend, who has no family in this country, to Christmas dinner tomorrow evening, so that she won't be all alone tomorrow. So, it's a full schedule for the next 36 hours or so. But rest assured, I'll be back come Friday.
In the meantime, let me wish the compliments of the season to one and all from the Grand Duke Irwin-Amadeus II and the love of his life, the Grand Duchess Sonja. Wherever in the world you might find yourself, may your Christmas Day be filled with friends, family, good cheer, and perhaps also a few minutes to reflect on your good fortune and the more pleasant moments of life. Merry Christmas!