Saturday, December 4, 2010

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas.....

.....which means that the kids are excited and I'm starting to panic. Big time!!!
Every year it's always the same - I decide that I'm going to start early and collect bits and pieces through out the year and then realise at the start of December that I've got absolutely nothing in or ready. And don't even mention cards!!! Having owned a craft shop it was a given that I would make my own - and old habits are hard to break.


This time last year I was sat beside my 8 week old daughters bed in hospital, watching her suffer with bronciolitis and praying to every god and goddess I know the name of that she would make it through. Which, thanks to them all, she did. However, due to a combination of preparing for her birth in October, the hectic first few weeks of her life and her subsequent illness, it did mean we were way behind for the holidays - so much so that we only had one week to organise everything (including getting the gifts off to Santa for the kids ;-D )

Somehow we managed to pull it all off but I swore I wouldn't go through that stress again... and this year... was absolutely no different from any other year! I'll admit that I did try hard this year. I bought the stamps for my cards way back in February and even started them. Then Tony decided we were closing the business and I spent the next few months packing up a lifetime of craft materials - including my Yule and Christmas cards. We even started getting a few things in for gifts when we found a bargain or a freebie (gota love Freecycle!!!). And then life got in the way and before we knew it the birthdays were upon us, the kids were of on holidays or starting back at school and other things started to take priority. When we closed the shop in July I had it all planned - I would start up my own business again - this time making finished pieces to sell, like the cards and jewellery, maybe even some of my Fimo or ceramic pieces. All this would be done at night when the kids were in bed and I'd have a bit of freedom. But first I would finish off my Yule/Christmas cards so I wouldn't have those hanging over my head. Life however had other plans.

And so we find ourselves - 3 weeks (I think - I hope!) before the big day and my cards are still here waiting to be finished. And as usual we had the mad mummy panic the other day were daddy was literally threatened to within an inch of his life that he WAS going to go shopping and we WERE going to buy the gifts that I picked!!! And I'll give him his dues he went along like a good little soldier and we got everything we wanted (cos in the end he decided that it was a great idea of his to buy the drumkit, Happyland, pink stereo etc) for the kids.


And now we look forward to that other big tradition - the Annual Tree Decorating Arguement. An evening of family togetherness, where the kids argue and fight over who's putting what where and shout at the wee ones for taking the decorations off as they're being put on.

I'd like it to be like my memories of my childhood - I believe in my heart that this time of the year is the one last real piece of magic in a childs life and therefore in their parents/caregivers lives. I try to make it special for them and it breaks my heart each year that it never seems to work out that way - that both Tony and I allow ourselves to get caught up in the stress that goes with the whole season. Somehow, while trying to re-capture that part of us that are forever children, we unwittingly allow the adult to come out and spoil it for everyone. We spend this time of the year threatening and blackmailing that it will be cancelled (which it has been at least 4 times already this week!!!) instead of embracing the magic and allowing ourselves to be carried away with it. Basically we try way too hard to make it "perfect" for the kids - who cares if it's perfect - IT'S CHRISTMAS!!!!

But we live in hope that this year things will be different - that daddy won't lose the head and complain about how much this is costing him and that mummy won't go psycho. That Ryan will not get aggressive when Rebecca puts the decoration he wanted on the tree, that Jonathan won't open too many of the gifts before time and that Jessica will leave a few decorations on the bottom of the tree.

And that despite - or perhaps inspite - of everything - we will have the perfect Yule and Christmas that we're all dreaming off........

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The things we do...

I am so sore tonight - the result of a very long walk today to take Jonathan to pre-school. We were lucky enough to get him a place in a pre-school which specialises in helping children who need a bit of extra help to get ready for school. Jonathan goes due to the fact that he's following the family tradition of being a late talker. Now normally his dad runs him there as it's a way on the other side of town from where we live but, since Tony's working over thge festive period, I have to take him every Tuesday. Not an easy thing since I don't drive. Which means once a week we have an adventure as mummy gets to walk to nursery.

Today was the first time we'd done it and I'll tell you, I'm suffering for it now! We left the house about 12pm for Jonathan to start at 1pm but me being me, I totally forgot about the snow and ice yesterday. And the fact that, despite what an estate agent told me years ago, that everywhere in Douglas is NOT 5 minutes away! Mind you, despite all the snow and ice and hills we managed to get there in just over 30 minutes. But like I said - I'm paying for it big time now so it shouldn't be to hard to understand why I was looking forward to getting the kids settled tonight so I could just sit down, relax and catch up with everything I needed to do.

But I'm sure the kids have been conspiring against me... I was really hoping to get some knitting done tonight but they had other ideas. Tony works nights but I've managed to get into the routine of both of us putting the wee ones down together before he goes to work. Ryan and Rebecca go up separately later on so I have some time with each of them. On Tuesdays though I get selfish - Kirsties Homemade Home is set up on autoview for 9pm so it's vital I get them all in bed and asleep so I can sit and relax and indulge myself. Of course the kids usually have other plans. Normally it's Jonathan, my 3 year old insomniac but tonight it was Ryan. He's a typical 9 year old boy - thinks because he has just 4 years to go before he's a teenager he should be allowed to do what teenagers do. Tonight I let him stay up a bit to watch a movie with the inplicit instructions that he was to go to bed the minute it was over (crafty mummy knew that there was only 10 minutes to go before it ended!) Which, I'll give him his dues, he did. But, just as I'd got myself comfy with a nice hot cup of Assam and my huge big bag of wool beside me...I hear the footsteps.

Now, normally I wouldn't mind having a bit of company but with Ryan - well he never shuts up! I have never in my life met a child who can talk as much. When he was a baby his dad gave him the nickname Duracell and believe me we're still looking for the off switch! So, I spent nearly an hour trying to pretend that I was crocheting a mobile phone cover, all the while trying not to get frustrated at the fact that I should be finishing off their Yule gifts. Not to mention the fact that Saint Kirstie of Allsopp was only doing stuff that I really wanted to find out about. And of course the wee man chittered the whole way through. I'll give him his dues, he sat on a chair and tried not too but he just couldn't help himself. And I wouldn't have cared but when he couldn't resist and just had to talk, you just know it was right at the time she was giving that very important piece of information I needed.

So another night where nothing got done. Biggy biggy catch-up day tomorrow, though aparrantly Tony and I are going gift shopping. Should be fun, as this year, what with money being so tight, I've decided that we're going to go down the thrift route. So tomorrow, Tony's going to be introduced to the wonders of charity shops. Like I said - should be fun....

For now though, I'm going to try to get myself back onto the sofa. Way too late to do anything crafty or creative tonight but enough time to sit back and watch The Vicar of Dibley getting married. Now where'd he hide tose choccy biccys he's just brought home from work.....

Monday, November 29, 2010

Snow Day

We had snow yesterday - apparently the first time in 17 years we've had snow in November - or so Ryan keeps telling me. The kids are in their element though they only went out yesterday in 5-10 minute bursts because of the cold. And today, although most of it's melted away we have an official snow day off school. The Manx government have decided that it's too dangerous for the kids to go to school due to ice so I've got 2 school kids at home... playing the Wii in their bedrooms? Go figure. Apparently it's too cold to go outside. Cue mummy going round all day with the stories of how we had to go to school in snow worse than this, feeling like lemons cos my mum made us wear hat, scarf, gloves and moon boots.

Saying that - it was good to see Ryan out playing snowball fights with his dad - even if they did start throwing them at the living room window to see what Jonathan and I would do (maybe I shouldn't have kept pulling faces and sticking my tongue out at them!!!)

And now I have the house to myself - sort off. Jessica's down for her nap and the other 3 have gone out with their dad and some friends to the local park to see if there's enough snow up there to make a snowman (or woman). And I have big plans! Telly's off, CD is on and the wool is out! I put my name down for a Secret Santa swap on UKHippy - £5 limit for a present and of course I thought I'd have plenty of time to crochet a few things. Now what with Yule and Christmas fast approaching I'm starting to panic. Cards need to be completed, dolls need to be finished for Yule and lists need to be scanned and ordered for Christmas. And as usual I'm going round saying that things will be different next year cos I WILL start making things in January. Saying that, Rebecca's doll was meant to be her birthday gift last year. Ryan's footballer was for his birthday in June (not my fault - the local habidashery ran out of stuffing) and I did start my cards in February (a few toppers to finish off but I still need to order the actual cardstock to stick them onto!!!)

All I can say is that it's a good job being a Pagan living in a house full of Christians - I get 2 chances at New Years resolutions - who knows I may even be able to keep a few in 2011!!!