Christmas Event

All in all it has been a good Christmas break. Granted I have been suffering from a rather ruthless sore throat but I have limited its effect by the taking of a couple drinks for medicinal purposes.

Opening the presents was fun and everyone seemed to get the type of things that made them happy. Even though I had dropped a few hints there were a few of things I wanted that didn’t appear.

Leading up to each Christmas the girls will ask what presents would I like and I answer the same every year; a bottle of port, a guitar magazine, and some chocolate brazils.

Every year without fail they reply ‘They are not real presents!’

I try to remind them that these are the things that will make me happy but it is as if I am asking for the impossible.

This year I received several guitar related items and a full box set of the Red Dwarf television series. Then, just when I was thinking that I would have to buy my own favourite things they handed me three extra presents; a bottle of port, a guitar magazine, and some chocolate brazils.

All in all a good result!

In the exciting mix of gifts we also had the customary tins of chocolates. When I was a kid the conversation leading up to Christmas was always should we buy Quality Street or Roses; the presumption being we would only have one tin for the holiday period.

As it was this year we had six different tins on offer; showing quite clearly how complicated life has become.

Back in the days of my youth we would be faced with a choice between The Morecambe & Wise Show and a James Bond movie (no real choice there).

Now we have 760 channels and still we cant find anything worth watching.

In the seventies we had to decide between only two types of lettuce (Cos and Iceberg) and a couple of kinds of tomato (Normal and Beef).

Now we have many variations of both including Lolo Bionda and On the Vine. And don’t get me started about spring onions being called salad onions.

With so much choice available to us it is a wonder that we get anything done at all in the lead up to Christmas.

I tend like things to be relatively simple; hence only asking for a few pleasures as presents.

We always tend to buy too much stuff as it is and this includes the Christmas meal; I keep reminding the family it is pretty much just a Sunday Dinner with a few extra treats.

My plan worked and we had just about everything we needed for a special family occasion.

After the openings of the gifts we consumed our food and settled down to flick through the 760 channels and compare notes on the chocolate varieties available to us.

It was the only time we argued over the holidays; maybe too much choice is not always a good thing.

Christmas Cards

Leading up to the festive season my wife and I assume our usual roles and complete our assigned tasks.

I make sure the decorative lights work and my bride ensured that all the Christmas cards are written.

Mrs M was set on buying cards that supported one of our favourite charities so we spent what felt like a short lifetime selecting the most suitable design.

For some reason my wife thought it was good sport to ask for my opinion; perhaps only to make me feel included.

It is at this point that I feel the need to add a confession; we are one of those families that send out a yearly newsletter with our cards. Sorry if you are one of those people who find such things annoying but it is what we do.

Leading up to the event I often have my own doubts about the whole practice too, especially when we have to think of interesting things to say about ourselves. I am soon convinced that our way of working is correct when we start to receive incoming mail.

It is always nice to receive but there are some people who seem to make very little effort at all. We get a card every year from someone called George and neither of us can figure out who this person is.

He doesn’t help much because he never puts either a surname or a return address. Picture the scene; we are sat in Yorkshire wondering who on earth he is and he is sat in…… wherever he lives…….. trying to come to terms with the fact that the Molineaux family ignore him every year even though he goes to the trouble of sending a card.

In light of this, enclosing a newsletter seems perfectly reasonable.

This brings me to people’s choice of cards to mark this special occasion. I have just had a look through the collection we have on our mantle piece and noticed that they do little to give us any clue what the event is about.

If you travelled down from another planet and tried to get any sense of meaning by just looking at the cards you would presume that Christmas was the most odd form of celebration.

Firstly you would think that every year at this time the fields were filled with snow when in truth it has been years since this happened except in Hollywood films.

Secondly, you would reasonably conclude that it was perhaps the birthday of some bearded fat guy wearing a red suit.

Thirdly, that it is meant to be a time of peace when ironically it tends to be the noisiest of times.
Perhaps in our own way we are trying to redress the balance by sending a newsletter to the ones we love.

Whether it is about snow or Santa or peace you will have to decide for yourself. It might have helped if someone had sent us a Good News letter……………or perhaps someone did!