Three weeks since my last blog. That sounds a bit like a confession and I have to admit that I have been feeling guilty about not blogging.  My last entry ended up not being published as the app on the iPad decided it didn’t want to play ball and refused to publish – I subsequently lost all the writing and couldn’t face tapping it all out again. (I can’t remember the topic but suspect it was probably one of those rambly, nonsensical ones that no-one will have missed anyway!). Since then I haven’t wanted to risk it again on the iPad and haven’t had the time or the wherewithall to do it on the laptop. Until today. Hurrah!

I feel there should be much to tell as I have been too busy to blog but honestly it’s all been pretty routine life stuff. We’ve decorated the lounge – finally. When I say “we” I obviously mean K, with limited assistance from yours truly. I held some wallpaper for a few minutes and helped move furniture. I made coffee and gave moral support. Which is important. The end result is fab and we are chuffed to bits that we bit the bullet and had the wall put in. Both rooms now feel bigger and yet cosier. And just in time for the festive season. Literally – we had friends round on Saturday night and K finished putting up the last strip of wallpaper at around 3pm. We like to fly by the seat of our pants in this house. (That was meant to sound ironic. I mean really would anyone have cared if one strip of paper was missing?)

The rest of the time we have simply been doing what everyone is doing and just generally getting on with the day to day life of ferrying kids, supporting homework sessions, cooking, eating, getting ready for Christmas.

Christmas feels different this year. It’s the first year that A is a true non-believer – we think. She mentioned the other morning that she is still as bit unsure as to how she got a bell from the sleigh (I left 2 on the patio a few years ago when T was showing signs of not believing) and so did someone else in her class (his mum must have seen the same article that I did) but if Father Christmas doesn’t exist how come they both got bells? I love this phase where your child is growing up (and SO grown up at times) and challenging and questioning; but also plays with Sylvanian Families and still has a bedtime story (albeit a rather spooky ghost story rather than Princess Poppy) and is still not jaded enough to think that it could perhaps have been her parents who left the bell on the patio. So perhaps the magic of Christmas that I have been creating for the last 13 years and have wholeheartedly bought into is a bit less this year. I’ve still loved the process of choosing gifts and wrapping them up but, as the stocking will no longer be the big charade of “how did FC know you wanted that?”, this year I feel a bit less magical.

Then we add in the day itself. We have spent Christmas Day at home for the last 12 years (apart from A’s first Christmas when we went to my brother’s house) with either my parents or K’s or on our own (once, 2 years ago). We expected that this year would be much the same – and quite happily too – until a text arrived from my brother with the big question. Would we like to go to theirs for Christmas Day? This was wholly unexpected. They have three children. We have two. My parents are also invited so that makes eleven people. I know to some stalwarts this sounds like a walk in the park, and I know that my brother (P) and his wife (C) regularly have Christmas with her sister and family but I didn’t think C would want to entertain us all. Hadn’t even thought about it in fact. So the question was a bit of a surprise, and a bit of a dilemma. We had planned to ask K’s parents to us even though we suspected they would not want to make the journey. So K spoke to them and explained we had been invited to P&C’s and they confirmed that they would rather we went up to see them at some point over the holiday season. Dilemma over. Apart from the unsettling feeling about what the day will be like. The control freak in me wants to be the one cooking the dinner and deciding what time we eat. And the slob in me wants to be able to undo the button on my jeans after dinner and watch movies and eat chocolate. I’m sure we will have a lovely time. I am happy that my brother was so pleased when we said we would love to go. I am happy that he gets to spend the day with his whole family for once. I will love spending the day with everyone. But it will be different.

Talking of undoing buttons on jeans. I have now lost 11.5 pounds and am very very pleased. The last time I saw these numbers on the scales was many many moons ago before I was pregnant with T. So, more than 14 years ago. My clothes are looser and I feel better. I feel in control and have a more positive attitude towards food. My reflection isn’t much different. I still hope to see the 24 year old me that I still am in my head. There are more similarities these days but let’s face it, I’m 43. Not 24. And have just been told that I need glasses. Now that really will shatter the illusion!








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