What I learnt this week: 21st December 2017

It’s that time of year again…

It starts in early December, with the annual Christmas tree debate. The conversations in our house go something like this:

Family: ‘Why do we need a flipping tree anyway?’

Me: ‘Because it’s Christmas. And they look pretty,’

Family: ‘If we have to have one, get an artificial one. Real trees are a pain in the neck. Buying the damn thing, cutting the end off, pine needles everywhere, trying to get rid of the dead thing in January. Let’s not go through all that again this year.’

Me: ‘But real trees smell so nice.’

Family: ‘For [word too rude for this blog] sake.’

Truth is, I’m not ready to succumb to the practicality of an artificial tree just yet. And anyway, my books wouldn’t look nearly as good on it as they do on my freshly cut Normandy fir …

(yes, of course I was made to take them off. My family didn’t even want the tree. They certainly didn’t want a tree decorated with romance books).

ASCW on tree Books on Christmas tree

Next, we have the present debate. What are we getting each other (hints dropped and hopefully picked up on). What have we got in the ‘trunk’ – a place where I store bargains I’ve picked up during the year. A great idea, except that tastes change, my nieces grow, people ask for specific items, and I usually forget to look in the trunk until after I’ve bought everything. Anyone fancy a pair of size 2 sparkly shoes? My 13, 14 and 15 year old nieces certainly don’t, though they might have done ten years ago, when I first put them in there.

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Finally, we have the Christmas card debate, which goes roughly in the same direction as the tree debate. Again, I’m not ready to succumb to emailing/texting my Christmas cards just yet, though for the first time since my kids learnt to write (they’re now 18 and 20) I did let them off actually signing their names. The fact that the eldest was away during the critical signing period, and refused to come back until all cards were posted and decorations were up, had something to do with it. He’s home now, a fact that I can tell because 1) the washing basket is never empty 2) the snack drawer is always empty 3) when I come downstairs in a morning there are more lights blazing than in Oxford street. Lovely to have him home though, honest.

Which brings me to the most important part of Christmas for me. Family. Whether I’m sitting next to an artificial tree or a real one, surrounded by cards or with an in-box stuffed full of emails, wearing a big sparkly diamond something, or an oven glove (hubby, big hint, NOT THE SECOND ONE)…I’m looking forward to spending time with my family. Until they drive me mad, of course.

Well, that’s me done for another year. I wish you all a very happy Christmas, whether you’re with family, friends or an artificial tree. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog, and I hope to see you again in the New Year.

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