Thursday, 24 December 2009

Merry Christmas


Food is a very important aspect of Christmas for me. I feel as though I've done more cooking this month than I have all year! I began Advent by making gingerbread men, and just yesterday I prepared a three course meal (more about that later)! One of the things I most look forward to, though, is Christmas dinner. We always have turkey with all the trimmings, and it is delicious! However, nice as the food is, I believe the atmosphere is even more essential than the food itself.


This is my last official Christmas at home. Next year, Spud and I plan to spend Christmas with his family (although we will spend some of the holidays with my family too!) and although the year after we will spend Christmas with my family, I won't be there for the whole Christmas period so I will miss out on various traditions such as putting up the tree, etc. I am not altogether sad, because someday soon I will have a home of my own, and Spud and I will start our own Christmas routine, but I will remember these childhood Christmases at home for always.


Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without the people we love. I know that the remaining number of Christmases with my Grandad is very limited, and his health has been so dreadful this year that this could possibly be his last, so it's important to treasure the time we have left with him. I love my family so much, and being with them really makes Christmas for me.


If you've read my previous posts, you'll know that when I was staying with Spud we had some pre-Christmas snow, a real novelty! It was so cold that the snow lasted for days, and icicles began to form. Back at home, my family didn't receive the snowfall they'd hoped for, but it was still bitterly cold. Yesterday evening, after a heavy rainfall, treacherous black ice formed on the roads, and this morning we've had to postpone our plans to visit my grandparents because the roads are too slippery!

Social Gatherings

For the last few Christmases I've hosted a social gathering for my friends. In the past up to ten people have attended, but this year I kept things simple and just invited my three closest girl friends (my bridesmaids-to-be!) I prepared a three course meal (cheese fondue and French bread, with mulled wine; spaghetti bolognaise; and chocolate cake) and we spent the whole evening talking, eating and drinking, taking photographs, and having a really great time!


This year, because the spent the last week or so before Christmas at Spud's place, I participated with some of his traditions. These included attending two carol services, a social gathering with a buffet meal, watching various Christmas movies, decorating the house, and going to an ice sculpture exhibition! I think Spud was a little disappointed after the latter because we didn't get to see all the sculptures. This was because we took Little One, but it was bitterly cold, and Little One fell flat on his face shortly after arriving at the exhibition. He didn't stop crying until we went into some shops to warm up.


This is probably the busiest time of the year, but the time and money spent on preparations should be worth it, otherwise it isn't worth it. Christmas is a time to be enjoyed: a time to laugh and joke, watch funny films, take silly photographs (see below), dress up (see below, also), and really get into the spirit of things.


Advent is a time of preparation and anticipation, but often these begin long before Advent. Spud and I made the Christmas cake at the end of October. Shops began to display their Christmas merchandise long before. Personally, I will buy Christmas presents for people at any time of the year. They're not always intended as Christmas presents - I will see something and think of someone, buy it, and put it back for the next present-giving occasion. The January sales often provide the best opportunities for buying Christmas cards, decorations, crackers, etc. at a reasonable price.


This is what lies at the heart of Christmas, and you can read the whole story here:

Matthew 1-2.12

Luke 1.26-2.20

Christmas is a joyous celebration of peace and love, in remembrance of the birth of our Saviour, the greatest gift of all:

I feel your heart beating inside my own skin
And I think of Mary in Bethlehem
That Night in a stable our saviour was born
Yes we have so much to be thankful for
On the last Christmas
The last Christmas
The last Christmas
Without you

They're choosing the colours
Preparing your room
For one day; midsummer
The advent of you

Together we wait
For a heavenly gift
Is winter a wonder?
Enchanted that is

The last Christmas
The last Christmas
The last Christmas
Without you

See the stars shining far above
Hear the singing
Praise to the giver of life and love
Maker of beautiful things

I feel your heart beating inside my own skin
And I think of Mary in Bethlehem
That Night in a stable our saviour was born
Yes we have so much to be thankful for

When the darkness was shattered
The dawn of God's grace
And the journey'd begun
To that first Easter day

On the last Christmas
The last Christmas
The very last Christmas
Without you

Sixpence None the Richer - 'Last Christmas'

'For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.'

John 3.16-17


Anna said...

Wow. Wow. This post , is beyond any words. Thank you Kess, for everything I've read so far of yours, here's to 2010 and our friendship !

Kess said...

Aw! Couldn't have said it any better myself, Anna! Here's to 2010 and our friendship!

And thank you. Thank you :)



Mariel said...

I can almost feel your happiness while reading this post! Looks like you're really having a lot of fun. I'm happy for you. Merry Christmas, Kess! :D

Kess said...

Merry Christmas to you too Mariel :) I hope you have a really good one!