Saturday, 22 December 2012

Have yourself a merry little Christmas!



The shopping is done- what we don't have we can manage without! Middle England is dull and drab, cold and damp, and we shall be most probably having a wet Christmas as opposed to a 'white' one.

It's time to sing carols, eat mince pies, drink mulled wine and retreat into the bosom of our families.

This year, as I hung the decorations, I was inspired to think of making more things rather than buying them,


but time ran out - there is always next year!

Watching the Wartime farm Christmas edition the other day,



someone commented that it means more to you when you have to 'make' Christmas, rather than just go out and buy everything

I was reminded of austere family Christmases of my childhood. Looking back, we had none of the fancy trimming of today - yet we didn't consider ourselves hard done-by. I remember the fun and sense of anticipation when we'd sit making paper chains to string up around the room.

My Dad had created a sort of artificial Christmas tree, mainly comprised of a broom handle to which he'd attached the bristly arms of some old-fashioned loo-brushes (new and previously un-used, I hasten to add!!). This was not so long after WW2 and the idea of make-do-and mend was still very much the order of the day. The whole thing was painted green (I think he must have just dipped the  loobrush-ends into the paint) and then added red sealing-wax 'berries' at the ends of the 'branches'.

A basic set of tree lights were made by my uncle, with small 'bakelite' eggcups utilised as shades around the little electric bulbs - they were decorated with Walt Disney transfers (heaven knows where they came from!)

This simple tree was brought out year after year, (sometimes needing remedial work before it was safe to use!) but oh, how we loved it!

Christmas dinner was always a chicken - very expensive in those days and very much a treat! I always remember that  the Sunday dinner before Christmas day was always egg and chips - we couldn't afford TWO roast dinners in a week! That was also another sign that Christmas was coming. :-)

We made our own fun, with a very old Bingo set being brought out for our amusement; card games and board games were to the fore, until the evening when we'd settle down around our little black and white TV set - only 2 channels in those days so you had little choice in what to watch - but you watched it all the same!

These days, we invariably have too many choices on which channel to watch, plus DVDs!

However, we often play boardgames to break things up and this year will be no exception - I am planning a board-game Olympics - there will be prizes! We have quite a plethora of options but a few 'favourites' will definitely be taking centre stage! (Careers, Cleudo, Mindtrap)




Amidst all this, we will be taking time to remember the reason for the season and we're looking forward to celebrating the birth of Jesus, as we join with others to sing carols and re-read the Christmas story in church.

Thanks to a 'nudge' from lizy-expat-writer (she has posted an online Christmas 'card' to all her readers!) I've decided to follow her lead and use the *image at the top of this post by way of wishing you all a peaceful time this Christmas and my very best wishes for all that comes your way in 2013!


(*image - picture of a tea-light Nativity scene on my daughter's mantle-piece)

14 comments:

  1. Our Christmas tree every year, and I left home in 1961, was red honeycomb bells, half opened, arranged in a triangular frame that dad built. It hung over the piano for the season and all our gifts went on the piano. Nice arrangement in a small house. It will be fun to see what others remember.

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    1. Joanne - I've noticed many people are getting nostalgic for the 'old days', given the dire current economic climate - I'm sure it wasn't quite so rosy-tinted as we recall, but we certainly were easier pleased back then!
      Best wishes to you and yours for Christmas and the coming New Year!

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  2. happy Christmas! definitely well set for games this year, esp now.i Will be able to (mostly) see the board ;) xxx

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  3. happy Christmas! definitely well set for games this year, esp now.i Will be able to (mostly) see the board ;) xxx

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  4. Love your memories of the artificial tree :) There is something so attractive to me in those make-do trees and decorations. I think we work hard to make good memories for our kids even when we are in hard times ourselves. It helps to distract from the difficulties.
    Marry Christmas!

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    1. Stephanie - I really hanker after simplicity! We are planning to spend plenty of family-time together this Christmas - best wishes for your celebrations and hope 2013 proves to be wonderful for you!

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  5. Family at Christmas is the best. A couple members shorter this year (sadly one is my Mother) but we will share good spirit together for a week. And remember. Have a good Christmas, Sue.

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    1. Chuck - yes, the passing years leave gaps at our tables, but new family members come along to add to the numbers! Have a wonderful Christmas and a truly splendid 2013!

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    1. Trisha - thanks for stopping by! A Merry Christmas to you, too, and I hope 2013 brings lots if pleasant excitement for you and yours!

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  7. Sue, hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas!

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    1. BB - thanks for stopping by! Hope you have a joyful (but relaxing) break over the festive season & best wishes for 2013!

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  8. Hope you had a great holiday, and here's to an awesome new year!

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