December has been a ridiculously busy month. We’ve had various family visiting (and more visiting this week), new fish delivered, birthdays and too many school events for me to keep track of and that’s before we even get to, you know, Christmas happening.
I think the first festive thing was Pip’s school nativity play. She played the innkeeper’s wife and was just brilliant. She made everyone laugh, which she was thrilled with. Husband and I both managed to be there – a first for us as usually at least one of us has to work.
The two weekends following that we had family members visiting. It’s lovely to see people we don’t often get to and meant that Christmas sort of stretched out into weeks before the actual Big Day and with another visit this week, it feels like it hasn’t quite ended yet.
The weekend before Christmas, disaster struck. Our oven broke. This meant no Christmas baking, which is one of my favourite activities in the festive season. Despite my landlady’s best efforts in trying to get an electrician to fix it, it wasn’t fixed in time for Christmas (and, in fact, still isn’t fixed now). Thankfully my landlady lent us a mini oven, which cooked our little chicken (no point in a turkey when there’s only three of us!) perfectly, even if the roast potatoes didn’t crisp up at all.
On Christmas Eve, I had to do a shift at work. It wasn’t long and while I was out, husband and Pip had some quality time together (by which I mean that they shot each other with Nerf guns). In the evening, we enjoyed our usual tradition of drinking hot chocolates with marshmallows and cream and watching Muppet Christmas Carol. Pip was allowed to open two presents – a pair of new pyjamas and a little toy dog, which she has named Dudley. After she went off to bed, we watched Die Hard, another tradition of ours. Call me sentimental, but it just doesn’t feel like Christmas until I’ve seen a Bruce Willis repeatedly escape what should be certain death to brutally gun down an office tower of mercenaries armed to the teeth, all while barefoot and bleeding.
Pip is unique amongst all children I have ever known in that the only lie in she ever has, for the entire year, is on Christmas morning. We woke up at 8am. That might not sound exactly late but on a normal weekend, she’s out of bed at 7am, if not earlier. It was a leisurely morning of opening presents and eating pastries for breakfast. I continued in a relaxed and calm manner until I realised that I was whole minutes late to start my intricate dinner cooking schedule and went straight into a state of utter panic.
Dinner was ready on time though. The mini oven wasn’t perfect but it did the job and that was better than nothing.
The afternoon was spent on the sofa in a food-induced stupor, watching mostly disappointing television. Except for the Doctor Who and Downtown Abbey Christmas specials, which were both utterly brilliant. That’s all I shall say – no spoilers here.
We had a honey glazed gammon joint for Boxing Day dinner and for dessert my favourite festive pudding – Panetonne bread and butter pudding. Very yummy, if I do say so myself.
The rest of the weekend has been pretty slow and relaxed. I had wanted to get outdoors for a nice walk but the weather has been pretty dismal so we’ve been almost entirely indoors, except for a brief trip to the shop for some essentials. Or rather, more cream for the mince pies and reduced price chocolates.
I hope you all have a had a wonderful Christmas and I wish you an awesome 2016!