It’s Christmas Eve. I woke up absolutely convinced it was Christmas Day. See below my round up of the best and the worst bits of Christmas.
1. The Family get together: it wouldn’t be Christmas without it. This is the crown of the best and worst in one- yes getting together with your oldest, nearest and dearest is the point and best bit of Christmas. But for some reason we decide its best to make everyone stay indoors together for 48 hours and not annoy each other. You also have the juggle of which relatives to see when, who will get offended by being seen the weekend before Christmas? Who insists Christmas is ruined if someone doesn’t come on Christmas day? Awkward.
2. The Queen’s Speech: this is a hallowed Christmas tradition in the Masters household. The eating has to be planned around it – lately we’ve agreed it’s the perfect gap between main course and dessert. We are not a bunch of crowing royalists, but in the mania of wrapping paper, sprouts and crackers it’s a moment everyone sits down quietly and listens to, what I like to think of as, the nation’s Grandmother telling you like it is about the year that’s been, and her hopes for the year to come. Then my mum and I cry with nostalgia. THAT’s Christmas.
3. Cheese: yes I’ve eaten three bags of crisps, two bowls of guacamole, four roast potatoes, a glut of sprouts and a heavy portion of chocolate pud but YES I would like some of all the cheese.
4. The games: unless it’s Monopoly. Then my brother turns into a millionaire Candy brother property tycoon. And charitably gives you a property that you know will screw you over later. My favourites: Scrabble, Articulate, Linkee.
5. The fairy lights: Mr H aka energy saving grinch- says 7 chains of fairy lights twinkling and blazing is too many. We had a big string running through our hallway for a recent Christmas drinks party turning Catford into a mini Christmas grotto. Eds took it down the next morning. Apparently I’m allowed it back for new years…
6. The Christmas presents: I love the buying because I love shopping in all it’s forms. My present wrapping style is more enthusiasm than precision. But unwrapping others- “Oh wonderful! You thought I’d like that! It’s like we don’t really know each other! Thanks SO much.” I have my bad present face DOWN. My mother always has a bad present face- even if she does like it really- she needs a few minutes to process it.
7. The Christmas films: I watch Love Actually every year. Obvs. Except in the year of #MeToo it all feels a bit too prophetic. The caterer is wearing a very 2017 trend appropriate choker, Keira Knightly’s wedding gown is adorned with fashionable feathers and the tea maid is almost sexually assaulted by a blonde American president. Hmm.
8. Seasonal outfit planning: one of the wonderful parts of a big family with multiple get togethers is the need for a Christmas day dress- but also a Christmas Eve spangly skirt, a Boxing day sequin top- with wellies for walking. My Christmas holiday suitcase is the funnest of them all.
9. The, as Alice Levine calls it, Gooche week: those hallowed few days between Christmas and New Year when all you need to do is finish the quality street chocolates and go for long walks. A taster of wonderful calm January.
10. A time for reflection: My favourite Christmas party discussion is chatting over New Years resolutions. What’s going to make 2018? What mistakes have we made? Who will we be? What will we do? What will we learn? A classic blogger resolution post coming soon!
I hope your Christmas is wonderful in all it’s joyful and awful moments. And thank you for reading this blog over the last few months- your support really is the best Christmas present there is.