Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Ho Ho Ho



This morning at the Post Office, a lady was chuntering about the cold weather. It’s funny how we British are never happy. Yes, the arrival of the cold weather will play havoc with my bones, but for me there’s nothing nicer than a bright crisp day, lighting the log burner and donning my winceyette PJ’s and bed socks by 7pm.


It’s that most wonderful time of the year and I LOVE IT! Granted, my husband could do with a visit from the three ghosts. However, when he arrives home on Christmas Eve to the aroma of mulled wine and freshly baked sausage rolls I know the festive spirit will rub off. He’ll be able to switch off from worries of his company being taken over and imminent redundancies for a few days. And he won’t complain about how much I’ve spent on Christmas. Well, at least not until the 4th January.

I’ve always been Christmas’s number one fan right back from my earliest memories of pilfering satsuma’s out of the fruit bowl and eating fried leftover Christmas Pudding on Boxing day. Christmas Day was always a rather forlorn affair in our house. Like Tiny Tim, there was no succulent turkey. For Nan and I, a scrawny cockerel from the Co-op was our usual feast, along with sprouts that Nan put on to boil a week beforehand. But the table always looked magical when laid with the best dinner service, I was allowed a Babycham and Nan and I would pull each other’s crackers (although I always had to read her jokes because she couldn’t read the small writing.)

The year I first found out the truth about Santa was devastating. But I can’t blame Susan Abey for ruining it when she told me that it was really my Nan. It was my own fault. You see, as soon as I discovered the truth, I went hunting for all the presents hidden around the house. Consequently, on Christmas day, there were no surprises and I had to feign delight and even worse, lie to my Nan as I opened them. These days I much prefer surprises and ever since, I don't feel a present or shake it to try to guess what’s inside.

Since I met my hubby over twenty-one years ago, I have created my own traditions. Like listening to carols from Kings College while I make the mince pies on Christmas Eve. Another has evolved since an Italian friend brought us a Pannetone round one year and we kept it until Christmas Day. It was so delicious and light to eat on Christmas morning before the big dinner that we’ve bought one every year since. Oh yes, and there’s my greasy, well- thumbed copy of Delia Smith’s Christmas that hubby bought for our first Christmas. It still comes out every October; my bible to keep me on track with the food preparations.


If you’re anything like me at the moment, your life will currently be lists and more lists but over the years, I’ve given up the need for perfection. More often than not, I buy my Christmas pudding these days. The children always make the centrepiece and a good friend, Snailbeach Shepherdess usually makes me a delicious Christmas cake. Christmas is a precious time for us as a family, just the four of us and the dog, of course (although hopefully he won't eat the turkey carcass off the side this year so we'll be able to have cold turkey sandwiches.) We stay at home all Christmas, and the children get to play with their new toys. If they’re happy, we’re happy.

I’m well on with the nesting – another tradition in our house. Although goodness knows why I feel the need to wash the inside windows, paintwork and clean the fridge. Perhaps it’s so that when I’m lying and snoozing after dinner I won’t feel guilty ... I can simply relax and enjoy the festivities after all the build up.


May I wish you all a very special time with the love of family, the happiness of friends and the joy of Christmas.


God Bless us everyone

Until the New Year

xx


22 comments:

Preseli Mags said...

You're not the only one doing the pre-Christmas cleaning! I too have a well-thumbed copy of Delia's Christmas. It was lovely reading about your Christmas traditions past and present. And if J gets you on a train for a meet up in 2010, I'll be there! Have a brilliant Christmas and happy new year. xx

Sallys Chateau said...

Happy Christmas to you too, I love your frosty pics, I too have a well thumbed Delia, seems like we all got one for Christmas years ago !! xx

LittleBrownDog said...

What an utterly fab photo at the bottom! You sound lovely and Christmassy with all the most important things taken care of. Have a wonderful time (and enjoy SBS's Christmas cake - I bet it's well-laced with some hearty Christmas spirit!) xoxox

Amanda said...

Happy Christmas!! It was my sister who told me about Santa not being real - she's two years younger than me too! x

ChrisH said...

Happy Christmas to you ... I'm afraid I'm in the 3 ghosts school of Christmas - I'm a New Year kind of girl myself. Hopefully there'll be a meet-up to look forwards to in the New Year too. Enjoy it all, especially the cake!, Cx

Jenny Holden said...

Sounds very festive in your house. Love the snow man! Even I will be pre-Christmas cleaning, I love seeing it with all the worktops and other surfaces clear and sparkling! Back to normal straight after of course. Have fun :o)

snailbeachshepherdess said...

I always remember my mum doing the bedrooms out on Xmas eve - why? But 'done' they had to be - so when I've finished work on Wednesday guess what's on my 'to do' list!
Have a good one!
xx

Jarmara Falconer said...

Merry Christmas, BM, I hope you have a wonderful day with all your family and friends.

What a great snowman!

Suzanne Jones said...

Merry Christmas and all the best for 2010.

XX

Fran Hill said...

Have a wonderful time. It sounds like you should write your own book about how to make Christmas special. The hangy thing you sent me (forgive me ... there is probably a lovely name for it) has pride of place in the living room. Thank you!

Withy Brook said...

Have a lovely Christmas and may 2010 bring you happiness.
I was deeply impressed by the pevious blog.

Frances said...

This is such a beautiful post, and I have really enjoyed reading it as I had a very, very late supper after a long day at the shop.

I'll admit to feeling a bit sorry for myself as I sat down to tonight's pasta, but ... as I began to read your words, and found that many of your Christmas thoughts, connections and memories were so similar to my own, I just felt my spirits rise and I began again to embrace the beauty that this season can present to us.

I wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas. I want to be able to read much more of your writing in the New Year, and still just hope that we might yet meet on one side of the Pond or the other.

xo

Fennie said...

That is a lovely post, Debbie. Oh yes you are not alone in cleaning though I suspect you may be more thorough than me. So far this Christmas I have only once and then very half-heartedly tackled the paintwork.
Where does the time go?

Anyway do have a really lovely Christmas and I still remember your kindness from last year. Do hope you have a good time and that your writing also goes well.

Reasons said...

A lovely post and so well written as always. Love and laughter to you and yours. xxx

mountainear said...

Cleaning is not one of my strong points but yes, I did find myself rushing around with the broom this (Christmas) morning.

Hpe you are having a lovely time.

Debs said...

I too have a 'Delia' and it's well used and much loved, despite almost being ruined when our house suffered burst pipes when we were on holiday years ago.

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and 2010 is all that you wish it to be. x

her at home said...

I hope you had a merry Christmas Angel!

Jarmara Falconer said...

Happy New year to you and your family in 2010!

Jarmara Falconer said...

I have an award for you on my blog, BM, hope to see you soon.

Debs said...

Just thought I'd pop by to see how you were. x

Fennie said...

And me!

What is happening. Hope things are as OK for you as they can be.

rtfgvb771 said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................