Christmas is a tug of war for me.
I really do love it and I really used to get right into Christmas. However, it now seems like all these festivities have now become an extensive to do list and I’m running out of time, energy and cash.
I’m even wondering whether we could postpone Christmas to give me a chance to catch up!!
Or perhaps, I could be just like the dog and just sleep through the festive season.
I used make a traditional plum pudding in calico cloth and hang it up in excited anticipation. I love pudding dished up with brandy butter and hot, thick custard even though the temperatures can soar to over 40 degrees and it’s not uncommon to see a bit of bushfire smoke around here over Christmas either.
I also make my own Christmas Cake using my mother’s recipe, which she has been making all my known life. That recipe came from one of her longest standing friends Deidre who she went through the conservatorium with many lifetimes ago.
Christmas just isn’t Christmas without all those smells connected with making your own Christmas cake not to mention licking the beaters.
Every year, we have a real Christmas tree. A tree with real pine needles which actually smells like Christmas tree. It is an authentic Christmas tree and thank goodness we now have James our new robotic vacuum cleaner to vacuum up all the pine needles this year.
Every year, I am getting closer and closer to buying a fake tree but buying the tree is all part of our Christmas tradition. Sure, we don’t head out into the woods and cut down our own tree but we do head down to our local fruit shop and there is that anticipation of driving passed, waiting for the trees to arrive. Now the kids have transformed all that anticipation into nagging: “when are we going to get out tree?” That has removed a bit of the lustre but they are only excited. They wanted Christmas yesterday!
A life time ago, I used to make my own Christmas decorations. Our Christmas tree has a hand-stitched patchwork Christmas stocking I made when I was 12. There are a few foam baubles studded with sequins and pins, which I made around the same era. I bought more Christmas fabric again this year in what could only be described as an act of extreme lunacy. I have been intending to make the kids their own patchwork Christmas stockings for a few years now and every year, I seem to buy more fabric because somehow the fabric I’d bought the year before had somehow been “filed”.
I’d still like to do my old Christmas craft but these days we have the end of year dance concert which eats into our pre-Christmas time and then there’s all the end of year stuff at school and buying presents for teachers, kids, family and wrapping them up. I mean, have we been on a wrapping marathon or what????!!!!
So you can understand why I’m feeling a bit ambivalent about Christmas.
Anyway, I am starting to feel a bit more at peace with Christmas. The tree is up and after standing naked for a few days, now has flashing lights, tinsel and an eclectic range of mismatched Santas, doves, angels and stars dating back to my childhood. I won the Christmas raffle at the school and now have the ham,turkey and pudding sorted out. I have made my Christmas cake and the shortbread and the Raspberry Coconut Slice to take to my aunt’s place tomorrow. All the presents are wrapped and piled. I managed to get my haircut and even managed to get my eyebrows waxed. We’ve been to Church. Seen a few friends and been sociable. The house is scruffy but it will do. We’re only expecting the fellow in the big red suit and he’ll be too tired to notice after traveling from the North Pole. I have also been practicing Silent Night and O Come All Ye Faithful on my violin. They haven’t quite reached a state of perfection either but I just want to play Christmas carols with my Mum on Christmas Day and it doesn’t matter how it sounds. It will be special and besides, the kids can sing along and perhaps you won’t hear the violin after all!
Well, it’s time for the big red fellow to leap into action so I’d better get to bed.
Wishing you all a very Merry & Blessed Christmas and a wonderful New Year!