Adventures this month
- Plymouth Christmas market (we won’t bother with this one again!)
- Mevagissey (twice)
- Jools Holland concert
- Getting ready for Christmas
How are we doing?
Are we feeling playful?
In all honesty – not really at the moment! I’m full of cold with a horrible sore throat and a cough which means I’m not sleeping. While I can manage pretty well on a bad night’s sleep, I’m not doing so well with four nights on hardly any sleep.
However, Christmas is coming, and that does bring out the playful side in some people. My 12 year-old daughter absolutely loves the magic of Christmas – she is making decorations, getting Secret Santa gifts, decorating her own tree in her bedroom, planning how to decorate a Yule Log, watching Christmas movies and generally showing the rest of us how it ought to be done if only we had the energy. I’m sure once I’ve caught up on some sleep and fought off this virus I’ll be a bit more on board.
The work Christmas party
I had a bit of an odd work Christmas party. First off, let me tell you that I LOVE a work ‘do’. My husband keeps himself to himself and we don’t tend to go “out out” very much at all apart from the odd family meal or a music event or theatre – so I take the opportunity to dress up a bit and have a good time. As a teacher, these work events tended to happen at Christmas and at the end of the Summer term. With my new job, where I am working on my own almost all the time, working one-to-one with clients or visiting schools, it felt even more important to get together with the team and get to know the others better. It was a bit disappointing, therefore, to find that I was the only one from my team due to attend. The first bit of fun was that I turned up on the wrong night! This was entirely my fault, I’d managed to write the incorrect date in two different calendars, even though the email had the correct date! Because I wasn’t expecting to know many people, it took me a moment to realise that in fact I didn’t recognise ANYBODY, and when I asked, I found that this was in fact the “South West Chimney Sweep” Christmas party – though they did invite me to join them! Fast forward to the next evening and attempt number two. Not only nobody from my team, but in fact nobody else from our entire side of the organisation. Luckily I didn’t stay Billy No-Mates for very long, as some friendly folk took pity on me and invited me to move my chair and come and join them, and I did have a lovely evening (and a LOT to eat!). My team did make up for it slightly by having tinsel crowns and Christmas music playing at our quarterly team meeting this week.
Thinking of others
To be honest, one more thing is making me hesitate a bit more about the Christmas decadence this year too. I have come across a family of five who have recently been made homeless. No fault of theirs. The landlord wants to sell so issued a Section 21 eviction notice, but there just aren’t enough properties for locals to rent in Cornwall because of the massive number of second homes, summer rentals and air b and bs here, so they couldn’t find anywhere. They were advised that the council couldn’t help them until they were actually homeless and they should wait until the bailiffs came. So now that’s happened, and they are in emergency accommodation in a room in a Travelodge, presumably over Christmas, with nowhere to store or prepare food – so having to eat out (and into their savings) to feed the family. I just think it’s so awful that families are having to face this, and feel so lucky. It’s making me more determined to think of ways to look after others this Christmas.
Working for Christmas
Another thing that will make Christmas a bit different this year, is that it’s the first time in quite a while that my husband will be working over Christmas. Of course, sick people people don’t stop being sick over Christmas (though I believe they try to get as many of them home to spend time with family as possible), and doctors and nurses still need to be at work in hospital. C will be on-call and on the ward in the run up to Christmas, and with a lot more work to cover, as the junior doctors have called a strike that week, and will then be working on Christmas Day – before having a few days off. Christmas Dinner and gift opening will wait until he gets home. We will also be hosting my father-in-law, who will be facing his first Christmas since his wife died in January (having taken ill last Christmas Day / Boxing Day).
A quiet Christmas
With all this going on, I think Christmas this year is going to be a low-key, simple affair – plenty of board games, movies and short walks, and I’m planning to take Father-in-law to the Nine Carols and Lessons at Truro Cathedral too, which should be quite lovely.
So how are you feeling this December? What’s going on with you? Will you be going to a busy or quiet Christmas? Please leave your thoughts in the comments.