Christmas 2010

Well now, what a Christmas we have had! With nine inches of snow it was always going to be a challenge, but throw  a Motherly fall on ice that had her hobbling her way through the festivities, a thaw that caused the melting snow to pepper Mum and Dad's house with holes (and caused drippy bedlam on boxing day), a few arguments and a birthday cake firework that exploded in my sisters hand, and what you have have got yourself is the kind of dramatics destined for a long run on Broadway. Heck yeah, we don't do anything by halves in this family! But alongside the murder and the mayhem were all the ingredients of a terribly traditional, awfully British Christmas: burnt parsnips, The Royal Family, and Marks and Spencers party food et al. And despite everything, it's been fun, because there's nothing like a crisis or ten to pull a family together, don't you know. Especially when one of the mini dramas involves blowing up a paddling pool in the dining room to catch falling snow...

And of course there were presents galore! Look at all those books: Stitch and Sew from Cath Kidston, The Lady by Rachel Johnson, The Jane Austen Pocket Bible, The Fortnum and Mason Book of Tea and the latest Robbie Williams biography. Oh joy! And that was just for starters! There were cinnamon and vanilla candles, rolls of lacy and polka dot ribbon, a cupcake maker from Mark that I had long coveted, the gorgeous sewing box at the top of this post from Mum and Dad, Joules soap from Kath, a fabulous Domestic Goddess apron, chocolate galore, gold studded votives, the prettiest glass trinket box, spotty peg magnets, lots more besides, oooh and a partridge in a pear tree!

And oh my, did I mention the new mobile phone and iPod Touch?? Never was there a woman more thoroughly indulged than me. With a phone from my parents and the iPod  from Rich I spent the entire Christmas lost in whole new virtual worlds, hunting out apps to thrill you with in 2011 and sending my family around the twist choosing a ringtone that doesn't make me spill my tea when it bursts into vibrating life...

And now it is New Years Eve and  at two o'clock in the afternoon, there isn't a child in the house washed. After a week spent in and out of mum's, we are at home today and I am in a frenzy of laundry in my annual efforts to make sure I don't drift into the New Year with a pile of dirty washing and thus inflict upon myself a mountain of laundry for the rest of the year: because even my daftest, most personal superstitions have a domestic bent...

Though I am full of cold and bloated with both sausages on sticks ( after my nephew Gabriels ninth birthday "Stick party" last night: where all food had to be served, rather fabulously, on a stick!) and PMT, I am floating around my twinkly house feeling calm. Richard is helping Finley set up his new desk in his bedroom, Mark has just popped in and stole one of the first batch of  cupcakes baked in the maker and Grease is playing on the DVD to an audience of anyone who happens to be passing and cares to indulge in a quick bout of festive Summer loving...

All is well. In many ways, 2010 has been a truly terrible, difficult year, and I'm not sure I am sorry to say goodbye to it.

But tomorrow marks the start of a New Year. New hope, new opportunities, and a new day and I for one, am ready for change.

Happy New Year Darlings.x