Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Best Christmas Present Ever

Well, that's it for another year. We actually had a proper white Christmas, too. Of couse we did, white is all we can see outside our window, but we had some fresh stuff fall, just for a few minutes, but that's all it needs, around 10 yesterday morning.

Anna was delighted with her presents. She had been thrilled the night before by reading Santa's tweets, particularly when he found the time to reply to her. I'm still not convinced it was the real Santa, despite the fact that he knew her name, talked to her about her letter and confirmed that the glitter in the reindeer food is important (helps them fly, apparently), but maybe I'm just an old cynic.

I was relieved that he bought her as many books as he did - we just can't keep her in reading material. Along with the usual stash of Christmas annuals, she was delighted with a book from one of her favourite authors, Michelle Paver, more Michael Morpurgo, the remaining books in a series she had read the first one of at school but they didn't have the rest and, finally, the Guinness Book of Records. Weird? Maybe, but Bob's cousin gave her an old copy (from 2003 I think) a couple of years ago and she was fascinated by it.

For the first time, she's started to show an interest in popular music. Much to Bob's disgust, Cheryl Cole and JLS CDs arrived, although my sister tried to up the taste factor a bit by providing Michael Jackson's This is It.

I was happy with my stack of books - Delia's updated Christmas book, The Brawn Story, by Christopher Hylton, the new Marian Keyes, the Strictly Annual and the memoirs of the Almighty Vince. In a way I'm glad that my husband probably paid full price for the above because he just can't work Amazon. The demise of Borders Books is not a good sign for the traditional bookshop and I don't want to see any others go the same way.

While I got everything on my list and was very happy with it, the best present of all came from Anna. It was an A5 notebook filled with 121 pages of all sorts of things to do with Christmas. It had the words to traditional songs, poems and stories she'd written herself, her own drawings, puzzles she'd made up, her book recommendations, all linked together in her own quirky, very individual way. Unfortuantely she won't let me publish any of the poems or stories here, and she's asked to see this before it gets posted. I guess I have to respect her right to privacy on that one.

I really appreciate the amount of time and thought she's gone to over several weeks preparing it for us - and it's something we'll always treasure. It's not just words on a page, it's a snapshot of our daughter at 10 and a half.

The rest of the day went well - very relaxed, as is the way in our house. I love cooking Christmas Dinner but took a few short cuts - M and S roast potatoes and veg and, to my eternal shame, gravy, so all I had to do was get the turkey ready for the oven, make my Grandma's stuffing, throw the bread sauce together, peel some sprouts and manage the putting in and taking out of things from the oven once the turkey was made. I have, however, saved the turkey juices and the veg water from yesterday, so we will be having proper gravy tonight.

The only fixed point in the day was Doctor Who, but I'll write about that separately. I think I might need to mug up on some Time Lord history first.

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