Earlier this year I wrote about the fact that Christmas isn’t actually a holiday, not really, and especially not if you have young kids. Or any kind of dependents. Kids don’t stop being kids just because it’s the most wonderful time of the year. Toddlers don’t give a shit if your usual pre-kids Christmas routine was waking up at 10am, opening the “main” present, having Buck’s Fizz in bed and then watching Home Alone three times before maybe drinking more Buck’s Fizz in the bath and then merrily doing all the wrong things to the turkey.
(Do I brine it? Bernard! Which method are we doing? BERNARD! Stop messing with that bloody thermostat and read me the instructions – are we doing Nigella or Jamie? Brine or bacon?)
Even if you don’t have dependents Christmas isn’t much of a rest; you spend the few days between finishing work and Christmas Day trying to buy all of the tat for people that you haven’t bought throughout December (though it’s all on sale by then so that’s good – it’s to make up for the stratospheric stress levels that last-minute shopping bring on) and then you have to read up about which turkey-prep method you need to plump for. That’s if you’re staying at home – chances are you’ve got to do the “Grand Tour” and sleep on five different couches as you travel around the country visiting all of the friends and family members who won’t travel because they have dependents.
Anyway, it is a wonderful time of year, if you’re lucky enough (sadly, for many people it’s abysmal) and for me, having kids has brought Christmas back to life somewhat. I feel as though I see the magic in it again – the lights, the excitement, the cold walks, the jazzy music, the films – and I want to fully appreciate it and not see it as a stress.
So this year I am going to try and at least have one type of rest – a work rest! I’m deleting all of my social media apps from my iPhone so that I can’t look at them, post on them or otherwise engage with them. I’m not deleting the accounts – that would be stupid, given my job – I’m just pressing pause until January.
And (boo hoo) this will be my last post for a couple of weeks here, too, though please be filled with joy at the fact that I have loads of brilliant things lined up for you in January. I’m itching to edit them but mustn’t – if I do start editing, I won’t be able to tie up my last bits of admin and then I’ll be doing that on Monday 23rd and my whole “no work” plan will be made a mockery of. No plan likes to be mocked.
So, farewell for now my festive friends: wishing you an absolute blinder of a Christmas with minimal familial fallout and lots of brined/bacon’d turkey. (Which method do you do? I didn’t brine or bacon last year and it tasted just the same as any other year. I’m sure it’s all a nonsense. Thoughts below.)
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and – as always – a heartfelt thanks to all of you for reading, commenting and messaging. I appreciate each and every one!