This is a new one, reduced and bought a few days ago. It’s not real, of course. I’ve always had an artificial tree, but our old one was older than me, and was starting to look rather tatty. In recent years we’ve had a branch from the garden, and a light up wicker snowman, but this year I wanted to go back to having a real (well, fake) tree.
It has to be coloured lights for me, not white, and not flashing. Just lights, and as many baubles and tinsel and beads as will fit. None of our decorations match, and I’m not very particular about where they go. I just love the way they catch the light and make coloured shadows on the ceiling.
Don’t worry, Mr Snowman hasn’t been cast aside – he has a new home in the kitchen.
This year’s preparations have been nicely relaxed. I’ve travelled a lot with work, and we went away last weekend (photos to follow), so my present-buying has been more spread out than usual. I’ve tried to let go of some of the ‘what if I don’t get the perfect present?’ angst by imagining what I think when someone buys me something I wouldn’t have bought for myself (‘wow, I never would have thought of that, thank you!’). It helps.
I even sent (some) cards this year, and before the last posting date too!
I confess I haven’t made a single present. I haven’t even made cards, or mince pies, or decorations, or anything. I like making things, but I invariably leave it too late, meaning Christmas is a rush of sewing and sticking and occasional grumpiness. Oh dear!
This year I bought charity cards and made time to write little notes in them, and felt more festive than I did the year I made potato print Christmas tree cards that I didn’t even post.
So letting go of imagined perfection is this year’s Christmas theme. It’s not a bad theme for the coming year, actually.
Instead of rushing around, I’ve mostly been meeting friends and drinking tea.
Today I’ve had a lie in, and am now drinking tea and marvelling at the amount of mulled wine we managed to pour down the front of the stove last night. I suppose I should clean it at some point. It’s a glorious sunny day, so I’ll get dressed soon and amble to the local shops – perhaps one last present for Peter and a bottle of something nice for tonight.
I’ll take cards to the neighbours, wrap the last few presents, and track Santa as he starts his journey. Tonight I’ll watch Father Christmas and then The Snowman before bed, just like I did when I was small (and yes, I realise I don’t have children, and that will not stop me doing any of those things!)
Most of day I’ll spend sitting here with a cuppa, thinking festive thoughts and occasionally hopping up to fetch another mince pie.
Wishing you a very merry Christmas!
How have your Christmas preparations been this year? Busy? Relaxed? Anything different to usual?