I’m at risk of sounding as though I’m wishing away The Boy’s childhood, but rest assured I’m not doing that, but part of me is very excited about when he is old enough to grasp the excitement of Christmas because, for me, Christmas just hasn’t been right since my grandparents died.
As a kid, I remember always going to see them on Christmas day – they had a huge house about 30 minutes drive from my parents house, and while we regularly visited them at the weekends, Christmas was special because all my aunts, uncles and cousins would be there and we’d all be spending the day there together. There was too much food, presents for everyone, a visit to the church and the neighbouring residential home where my great grandmother and great aunt both lived, and then back to my grandparents house for more food and games in the afternoon: The women cleaned up after the vast Christmas feast, the men smoked cigars, or slept in front of the TV, and the kids would run around the house playing with our new toys.
As I grew older, fewer relatives would be able to make it every Christmas day, and after my grandparents died there wasn’t a central, large enough location for Christmas day to be held, so each branch of the family did their own, small, quieter day, and there were no children in the family for the day to centre around. Then The Hubby and I moved up here, so we’re miles away from my parents, my brother and The Hubby’s sister, my aunts and cousins – the only family we keep in contact with now, apart from the MIL and FIL, who live just down the road. Our Christmas days had become a quiet affair of a nice meal and some lovely presents and polite chit chat in the front room over a glass of Bucks Fizz feeling very restrained because I’d have to drive us home again afterward. I want The Boy and his cousin to have Christmases like I used to, with lots of family around and a day full of stuff to do and excitement – and I want to revel in him enjoying that as much as I did as a child.
The Nephew will be six months old by Christmas, so while he is a little older than The Boy was last Christmas, The Nephew is still not going to be as involved in the unwrapping of presents and playing with new things like The Boy will be this year. In years to come I can imagine the two of them ripping paper off presents, laughter, noise, running around MIL and FIL’s house, MIL complaining about the noise and the mess, FIL complaining about sticky fingerprints on his flat screen TV, me and SIL chasing after the kids who are hyped up on excess sugar while both our husbands snore in front of the TV. It’ll be like reliving my childhood, from a different perspective!