I might have been a little slow to catch up, but, as of today, it is Christmas in my house.
It's hardly registered with me at all that it's happening. I mean, there's been a vague awareness that something festive is happening in the world, but not with any specific focus.
Yesterday morning it hit me. In a week it's Christmas. Which I'm hosting. Admittedly only for my parents - just us three - but still. My fridge was empty. My house undecorated. My presents unwrapped. My spirit particularly unfestive.
In two days, I've turned it around.
My store cupboard is now groaning under the weight of yummy goodies. I managed to neglect to buy any normal food, but the calorie overload of the Christmas / Boxing Day dining table is sorted.
The house smells like Christmas. There is a heady combination of Christmas tree, satsuma, wrapping paper, and cloves about the place, which is very warming. And is it me, or do decorations have a certain smell. I think it's the aroma of last year, tucked in a box for 12 months.
My tree is, it's true, the smallest tree in South London, standing at a heady three foot six. But I've managed to get 120 fairy lights on it. And whilst I cringe slightly at the tack associated with Christmas, I'm a bit pleased with the opulent combination of glass baubles, porcelain snowflakes, and jangling bells that I've managed to pack on. The lowest hanging decorations do just skim
the floor and I'm aware that this might put pay to any plans Santa might have to arrange the plethora of presents that I am, no doubt, due under the tree.
Call me old fashioned, but I don't think the decs are complete without Nativity somewhere. I'm not a particularly religious person, but I do think it's only fair to give a small nod to the
little baby Jesus, in whose name we do all this. When we were small, our Nativity was made of cardboard and was folded and assembled each year. Inevitably the sheep and wise men would be arranged into compromising positions at some point over the holidays, and my Grandmother would have to be distracted whilst the stable was put back in order. I think these little fellas, standing just an inch tall, will be enough to do the job, without Doing The Job ...
And of course, no amount of decoration would be complete without the magic mistletoe berries. It's a funny little tradition, but one, nevertheless, that I feel strongly that a single girl-about-town ought to respect. My spring is therefore hanging in the hallway, waiting for some action ...
It's been a lovely, lovely day. Punctuated by a quite trip to down-town Furzedown for carolling, and a lot of crooning (my rendition of Silver Bells is enough to make Dean Martin squirm).
I'm really looking forward now to some good Crimbly baking tomorrow and to practicing a bit of The First Noel! Ho ho ho!!