The First Days of Christmas

Assuming the first day of Christmas to start on the evening of December 25th rather than the morning of 26th…

:present: On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me… some liquorice that was just too salty (although fortunately some of our New Year visitors liked it) and, on behalf of the children, several lovely books (although one is now sadly out of date, thanks to a tragic incident which allegedly will sAttc – I couldn’t bear to listen, but that was okay because they repeated the moment on Radio 4 ad nauseam 🙄 ) Simon’s Cat is almost as good on paper as on screen, but lacking those little chirrupy cat noises. I’ve not yet started A Little History of the World but I think it might be coming to bed with me once I’ve worked my way through all the Harry Harrison books the children gave Bob 😉 while Stephen Fry’s Ode Less Travelled might have to wait a while for me to have enough time to do it justice. Apparently I used to write poetry…

PIL did an almost excellent job this year, with a QI book for Bob, lovely warm slippers for me, some Peppa Pig bits and pieces for A, a fleecy blanket for L, a dinosaur kit for K (which he assembled the very same day and then could barely restrain himself from painting it before the glue dried) and a curious blank for J (presumably his parcel fell out of the bag somewhere along the way); fortunately there were also a couple of “all the children” parcels so we declared those to be his 😉 The joint subscription to Aquila is their favourite thing though 🙂

I’m getting ahead of myself, however. Christmas Day started for us at about 8, when the children came in to show us their :santa: stockings (handily stocked with food and drink which had held them off for a bit 😉 ) and then opened one present each before church – picking the ones they wanted to take to show: a magic Box of Tricks for J and K, which J practised on the way so he could show David, our local church minister, a trick, ear warmers and fleece for K, a little doll from her stocking for A and a warbling bird, also from the stocking, for L. The service was lovely – thought-provoking, fun, lively – it’s a shame David will be moving on this year, and really doesn’t make our still ongoing which church dilemma any easier.
We came home and had a snacky kind of lunch, then another :tree: present each, which gave us all something to do before it was time to get the dinner going. L’s godparents gave her a castle which needed putting together (Bob did it, but I thought it looked odd, read the instructions and redid it 😆 ) and then about 4000 stickers putting on; she’s about 1/10 of the way there so far… K had his dinosaur to do, J lots of magic trick to learn and A helped with the stickers, had stories read to her and generally pottered about. I lounged on the settee feeling a bit bleurgh and migrainous but managed to shake it off enough to supervise cooking. A did a good job of making pigs in blankets, Bob did stuffing balls (he’s the only one who likes stuffing anyway, so if he doesn’t make them he doesn’t get them!) and J and K peeled potatoes while L helped me with the sprouts. Dinner was a veggie version of traditional all the trimmings Christmas fare, then we watched One Ronnie, especially loving the Blackberry sketch, before flaming the pudding and opening a couple more presents. Nice quiet family day 🙂 We talked to Bob’s family on the phone, then tried to phone my dad, but he’d had his favourite kind of Christmas dinner (beans on toast, then mince pies washed down with whisky) and gone to bed so we talked to Mamgu instead and arranged to phone again on Boxing Day, when my sister would be there too.

So on the real first day of Christmas we headed off to Norfolk to have lunch with my aunt and uncle. The children were a bit disappointed that my cousin and his family weren’t there, as they’d been looking forward to a game of football, but they always like visiting there anyway; Auntie Norma has lots of interesting things to do 🙂 We phoned Tadcu and Polly and had a nice chat, also checking that Polly is still up for coming along to CP with us. She’s not sure Adam will make it, unless :snowman: weather clears up a lot for them (so need lots of good weather vibes for mid-Wales please!) but she should be there for most of the time 😀 Couldn’t stay too late, as boys had holiday orchestra the next day, but my aunt keeps toothbrushes etc there so children were all able to clean teeth and get ready for bed then fall asleep in the car, which helped.

:present: On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me… a lie-in (with the girls) while he took the boys to holiday orchestra. In the afternoon I did some provisions shopping and F arrived, come to stay for a few days with a long list of work to do in our nice peaceful, conducive-to-work environment 😯

And that’s as far as I’m going to get for now… I’m going to take my books to bed…

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