Our Christmas was quiet and uneventful.
That, to me, made it perfect.
Yes, true to form, and my last blog post, we had a(nother) perfectly timed bout of teething that resulted in two hours broken sleep for me the night before Christmas Eve and another case of sinus trouble that left me feeling like I was in a festive goldfish bowl, but that’s my new normal right??
But that won’t be what I remember. What I will remember is 14 month Harriet’s determination to unwrap her presents, probably just so she can get at the paper not necessarily what’s inside!
The lovely little, personal gifts from Harri, with just a little help from daddy. Apparently she loves my smile and ponytail (You did well daddy!)
Harriet’s realisation of her new found freedom on her new little trike (she’ll probably master that before she even gets close to walking!)
The just being together. Two sets of parents and nan in the mix- laughter, dad jokes and the same one-liners used every year- comfortable, safe and defining our close, extended family.
The look of joy and pride on our parents faces as they watched Harri make her new animal noises on demand and the happiness in their eyes as she reached her ams out to each one, sharing her love and making each one a joint star of the show- Papa, MaaMaa, Nanna and Dadad.
The shakey Skype call to the brother, sister-in-law and excitable nepews with new toys presented blurrerly close to the camera amid half-snatched conversations.
The nutty nibbles and Christmas pud that you get religiously every year, remaining uneaten… like every year.
Each Christmas, and especially these last two with Harriet in our lives, I’ve felt the luckiest person alive; it’s another year I’ve got to spend with my nearest and dearest. I’m painfully aware that not everyone has had that luxury. I know lots of people who, for many reasons, will have found this a particularly difficult Christmas and my heart is with them.
As you get older, you can’t help but want to freeze- frame those good Christmases, knowing that they can’t and won’t stay the same for ever.
Don’t just use Christmas as the excuse to give your parents a big squeeze or let it be the only time of the year where you really drink in your children’s happy faces. Let some little spirit of Christmas eek into the every day. That’s what I’m going to try and take with me into 2019.