I had a visit from a very dear friend of mine this evening and she came bearing gifts; decorations for our tree and this little beauty:
I love anything with birds, anything shabby chic, and anything red - so she knew she'd be onto a winner, and she was right. He was hung up straight away and perches pride of place next to the tree.
The visit and the gifts made me feel especially festive and then I realised: it's exactly two weeks until Christmas. I'm sure it was only yesterday I was writing here that there was a month to go?
Anyway, a fortnight until The Big Day. As you've all probably gathered by now Christmastime is my absolute favourite time of year, there's something about it that I find just magical. I can never sleep Christmas Eve, I'm just too excited; I suppose, when it comes to Christmas, I never grew up, I don't feel I've ever lost that sense of wonder.
And no, it's not just the presents; although I do admit to loving a rummage around under the tree when I get home to my parents. I can't help myself: I see the shiny parcels and just want to rootle. Told you: big kid!
For me Christmas is about a feeling of togetherness, being with those that you love and forgetting, for just the shortest of whiles, the mundane and the monotonous of quotidian life.
This Christmas promises to be extra special for me as I'll be seeing my brother again for the first time since September last year. And it'll be the first year that Mr. G and my brother's girlfriend will be spending it with our family (they're not not going to know what's hit them. Poor things!), so I'm expecting a lot of eating, drinking and making merry in our household over this festive period.
Although I'll be in a wheelchair this year I'm still looking forward to taking part - as best I can - in our usual family traditions:
Christmas Eve morning starts off with carol singing around the town, followed by hot chocolates and toasted tea cakes in a beautiful Victorian tea house. After yet more singing, we then all troop off for Fish and Chips but, sadly, they're closed this year. My brother was not impressed by this news. OK, I'll admit it, I wasn't impressed by this news but, you know, I was trying to act all mature and everything. Trying being the operative word.
Christmas Eve evening we'll light the log fire and settle down to the obligatory viewing of The Muppet Christmas Carol complete with mince pies and yes, more tea. It's a tradition we've had since I was ten, so it's been going a fair few years now (cough nineteen cough).
Christmas Day we'll be up ridiculously early (this in spite of the youngest member of our family being, erm, 22), and pile onto Mum and Dad's bed to open stockings (this all sounds very Enid Blyton, I know, but I assure you this really does happen. Minus Timmy the Dog.). Then its downstairs for tea, toast, and present opening. At this point, we begin to look vaguely conscious.
Then? After the orgy of unwrapping has ended it's off to the pub - I'd like to point out here that we do find the time to get dressed, we don't just rock up in our pyjamas and dressing gowns. I know we're from Cornwall, but we're not that uncouth thank you very much- for the customary lunchtime drink, joined by, what it seems, is the entire village.
Having quaffed a Mulled wine (or half, in my case) it's back home for the main event: the Christmas dinner. Cue cracker based madness and the consumption of half our body weight in roast potatoes.
Finally, finally, it's flop into a chair in front of the television time (Doctor Who, if you please), where we remain in a turkey induced torpor until it's time to hit the apples and pears.
Do you have any Christmas traditions? What's your idea of a perfect Christmas?