It’s all about the memories

We wished you a Merry Christmas. We really did. But I haven’t been in Blogland to let you know, so a belated Merry Christmas to you all.

Due to sickness and bugs there were some things I didn’t get around to doing. Unfortunately, the Bleurgh-fest is still going strong in our house, resulting in various members of the household needing nursing, and things in general slowing down. Despite this we had another lovely Christmas. How can it not be when you have children?!

We finally got the tree up and the children decorated it. It was Sid’s turn to put the angel on top of the tree this year.

We’ll never have a “show home” tree, or one that would look good in a shop window display. Instead, we’re used to having a selection of mismatched decorations and baubles gathered on one side of the tree, reaching no higher than two feet up, the first foot or so will be bare once the toddler of the year is done with it.

Mike and I finished the hamper gifts we made for our parents and for the uncles and aunt from the children. There wasn’t as much in there as we’d originally hoped to include but there was enough, and they looked good even though I do say so myself! In the end we settled on including half a dozen eggs from our hens, shortbread and biscotti and a clementine cake, a photograph of all the children (although not necessarily all looking at the camera), and a charity gift. Given the extortionate prices similar gifts go for in the shops we were very pleased that we’d made the effort to make something personal and proud of the results, not to mention the fact that it was kind to our pockets!

Christmas Eve was spent at my parents home. This is a tradition going back as long as I can remember, when family would gather at my parents for a huge evening meal followed by exchanging and opening gifts. I have so many happy memories of Christmases spent with my grandparents and family in general. Of the food, the laughter, and just the being together. If there were moments in time you could keep in a box my childhood Christmases be would locked up forever. This is one time I really do miss my grandparents that extra bit.

Over the years the decorations at my parents’ house have become quite low key. Can you spot the Christmas tree? Yes, the presents are under it!

We return home late, by which time the children are too tired to think about anything and so are we, come to that. On Christmas morning all but one of the children stayed in bed until gone eight o’clock. Mike and I were up much earlier, not expecting they’d have such a lie in! A few hours later and Mike’s family join us for the rest of Christmas Day.

Boxing Day is normally the first day of laziness after the pre-Christmas preparations. Normal cooking goes out of the window, and we make our way through the remaining buffet food and leftovers from Christmas Day’s evening spread. The children play with their games and toys and we try to make some kind of order from a scene resembling a tornado in a toy shop. We still haven’t managed it, with toys placed in neat-ish-but-not-actually-very-neat-at-all piles rather than proper places. We do discuss plans for increasing storage, however, which I suppose may be viewed as some kind of attempt at organisation, though granted in theory rather than practice.

So now I’m enjoying my family. Mike is off work until next week, and the children are on their school holidays of course. It’s lovely to have everyone home at this time of year. Not that it’s any less special at any other time, but at Christmas time, when all the rushing and work has been done, I can cherish the special days we’ve shared. We’ll all have memories of our family Christmases in the years ahead that we can go over and share, both with eachother and however our family may look in the years to come.

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