We have an odd tradition in our house. We have Christmas early every year. This is because the girls have chaotic lives and we usually escape to the Gambia. But not this year, sadly. Jen works for the police, so she works Christmas day. Vick has The Granddaughter, who needs to see her dad etc on Christmas day. So we have our own Day, early. It's rather nice, everyone arrives in a big jumble, and the house is instantly a complete chaos of bags, people, toys and noise. I love it. Six year olds seem to Take Over The Universe. Jen simply takes over the fireplace like a little cat. She will not be budged other than to race about the kitchen with Vicky doing dishes or making cups of tea for the masses.
First we have some Granddaughter presents. Granddaughter wakes us all up rather politely. We scramble for breakfast toast and coffee [the coffee is for me]. Everyone goes out in the cold for a walk and I beat the dinner into subservience and lay the table while they're gone. We have mini sparklers!
Then we have the Traditional Dinner; well, OUR traditional dinner. I think if I changed it now everyone would be horrified. An Hors d'œuvre of some description. This year we had won ton, last year, soup. The usual Roast duck stuffed with ginger and things, and roast pork [turkey is a bit naff], Delia style roast spuds, all the vegetables etc etc. I could do with another oven to be honest. Our little kitchen is literally bursting at the seams [and my hair standing on end!] by the time I am finished cooking the meal. Then dessert . Uff.
Then we have more presents [which now include the grown ups] and everyone collapses. This year was a little simpler than usual. I like to go over the top with presents – there's nothing nicer than choosing a gift and then wrapping it up extravagantly, just to see the expression on the face of the person who opens it. But we pared it right down to one gift each this year [apart from Granddaughter]. It didn't seem to make much difference – everyone seemed delighted and we had a lovely day. Well, the toilet broke and attacked Vick, but that's another story! Then everyone trooped off to their normal lives and we collapsed.
I had an exhaustion attack afterwards though – I was trying to remember if it happened last year, but I found I couldn't remember last year. That sucks. But they are few and far between now, so I can't complain. Well, just a little!
Here's Granddaughter with her Gruffalo plate…