It has become a little bit of a Christmas tradition here at Jammy Toast that each year we like to watch The Snowman. Every year we like to sit down and enjoy the story by Raymond Briggs but, because it is getting quite old these days, it never seems to feature on the Christmas telly listings. To us, it is the highlight of Christmas Day and so it would appear it is to others also as the film was voted 4th in UKTV Gold’s Greatest TV Christmas Moments.
With Christmas now almost here, it is sad to hear that many people who live in our home town of Birkenhead are having to rely on food hand-outs over the festive period. Luckily, a new scheme is starting a fight-back hopefully with the aim of wiping out hunger from our town. The “Feeding Birkenhead” scheme is the result of a national parliamentary inquiry into hunger and Birkenhead MP Frank Field is starting the scheme by bringing together local churches, charities and schools as part of the campaign.
As many of you already know, Einstein Bear is the bear here at Jammy Toast who is the brains of the outfit. Edward is one clever bear but he is clever where it comes to technology, which he studied at university, whereas Einstein’s intelligence covers many subjects. However, the other day he astounded even us when he came out with something so profound that he had us all wondering. In fact it was on Sunday, the shortest day of the year, when we were discussing how the mornings and evenings will start to get lighter. When Einstein stopped everyone in their tracks by pronouncing; “Not necessarily.”
Here at Jammy Toast we are more or less ready for Christmas and, like the rest of the country, hoping for a white Christmas. However, statistically we are more likely in this country to have a white Easter than a white Christmas! December is the start of the UK snow window, and it takes just one snowflake to fall on London on the 25th December to get the bookmakers to pay out on bets. Yet wintry weather is actually more common between January and March. But how did we become so obsessed with snow at Christmas, and what are the chances of it actually happening?
It has been a busy weekend for me here at Jammy Toast after I decided to take the weekend to get the website updated and get all the archives restored. As far as I am aware, all content is now restored and in working order. It is a difficult job having to update a website with nearly nine years of archives to trawl through so there is a chance something could have been missed. Can I ask a favour of all our friends; if you spot anything not working – no matter how small or insignificant – please let me know so I can put it right.
While we were researching and writing yesterday’s post about Richard Steiff, we came across a mystery which has still not been resolved to this day. Back in 1903, some 3,000 teddy bears were sent by ship from Steiff’s factory in Germany to America only for them to disappear. Some claim the bears were the first ever made and would now be the most valuable teddy bears in the world. So just what happened to these bears?
For many years people on both sides of the Atlantic have argued over who invented the teddy bear. In Germany Steiff have long laid claim to inventing teddies while in America a couple by the name of Morris and Rose Michtom have claimed to have invented the teddy after seeing a cartoon in the Washington Post featuring President Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt hunting real bears. Upon investigation it has been proven that Margarete Steiff and the Michtoms both came up with very different designs for a teddy bear around 1902. Here at Jammy Toast we thought it was about time we did some investigating and try to prove once and for all who really did invent the teddy bear.
What a great Christmas present for everyone here at Jammy Toast – Paddington creator Michael Bond has written a new short story about the Peruvian bear. The author created a letter, written by Paddington to his Aunt Lucy, especially for BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. In the letter, Paddington tells of a theatre visit to watch Hamlet and a trip to a Michelin star restaurant – both of which meet sticky ends.
Would you believe it is the season of good will to all men, well someone in Shefford doesn’t think that should include polar bears. Believe it or not, a six-foot mechanical polar bear that dances and sings Christmas carols is being investigated after a council received a noise complaint. The bear – named Bernard – bursts into song when people walk past Loft Café in Shefford, Bedfordshire, where he has stood since the beginning of December.
Since we decided to restart Jammy Toast Edward is busy going through all the old posts which we haven’t looked at for a long while. It is fun looking back and trying to discover how an otherwise normal, sane and sensible person like myself (*cough*) suddenly decide to start a retirement home for Renault Bears? How was it that we suddenly decided to spend hours searching the world for unwanted Renault Bears and bringing them here to Jammy Toast to spend the remainder of their days watching daytime telly and eating their favourite food? I think it is a story worth re-telling, this is how it all started…