The run up to Christmas can be stressful, busy and expensive. The shops reduces all the gifts a week after you bought them, you’re running out of places to
stuff hide presents, your to-do list could rival Santa’s, and you know there’s something you’ve forgotten but you can’t remember what it is and it’s keeping you awake at night. There’s a lot of grumpiness and general bah humbugging out there. I myself have just witnessed a cashier and the customer in front of me have a good moan about Christmas and ungrateful children. Admittedly I was in Poundland and not an exclusive boutique store, but enough people.
The final week should be all about joy and goodwill to all men. Let’s all take a deep breath, relax and enjoy some Christmas merriment. We all work so hard to make this day perfect that we sometimes forget to stop and open our eyes and see the magic of Christmas.
Here are my top 10 festive highs that always make me smile and feel that Christmas glow.
1 Christmas Lights. From beautiful icicles hanging gracefully from the eaves of gorgeous houses, to the tacky flashing singing larger than life Santa. And not forgetting the houses that negate the requirement for street lights due to the sheer number of lights that must use more electricity in one month than the rest of the year. I love them all.
2 Christmas Songs. Everyone has a favourite. One they like to turn up loud and sing and dance like no one’s watching. “You scumbag, you maggot, you cheap lousy…” sing it with me now!
3 Christmas Movies. There’s always a non-believer. There’s always some bad guy out to ruin Christmas. Throw in some cute kids and Father Christmas then some Christmas magic happens and a beautiful happy ending. What’s not to love. Some even have cute dogs in for added bonus. (We watched Santa Paws this weekend!)
4 Nailed It Present. Some people are notoriously hard to buy for (My Mother-in-law likes scrunchies – nobody has sold them since the nineties), Some people very usefully tell you want they want and you can go get it. But every year I manage to get that one surprise gift for someone that I know they are just going to love, then love me even more for giving it to them. They will be thrilled, I will be in the running for best daughter / friend / niece / wife award. Everyone is happy. I am smug. Nailed it.
5 Cards From Your Kids. What better way to make a mummy grin from ear to ear (and maybe weep a little) than to present her with her Christmas card. My son drew a picture of me and a flower this year. It makes me smile every time I look at it.
6 Strangers Wishing You Merry Christmas. Sometimes the world is shit and really crappy things happen. But other times you can be reminded just how caring and generous the majority of people are. At Christmas most people seem to remember this and it’s okay to make eye contact with a complete stranger on the street and smile and say “Merry Christmas”. At any other time of the year smiling and greeting strangers makes people think you are a bit mental and weird, and people will cross the street to avoid to you.
7 Food. You get to have food that you don’t buy at any other time of year like massive boxes of biscuits, Turkish-delight and Ferrero Rocher. Yum.
8 Kids Are On Their Best Behavior. And if they momentarily step out of line, the mere mention of the man in red reverts them back to little angels. At no other time of year do you have such power over your kids!
9 Christmas Magic. The sheer excitement and wonder in any child’s eyes at this time of year reduces me to a weeping mess. My son is convinced that last year he saw Father Christmas and Rudolph in his bedroom on Christmas Eve. And I will tell that story to his children, in the same way we tease my now 31 year old brother about the time he dove into bed so quick because he heard Santa’s sleigh and had to get to sleep before he landed on the roof. We will be watching for the big mans sleigh in the sky on Christmas Eve (Aka International Space Station) along with millions of other families, as we savor every bit of Christmas magic that we can.
10 Drink. It’s OK to drink champagne at nine in the morning. Do you need any other reason to feel cheerful?
What makes you feel festive?
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