In case you’ve been wondering where I’ve been (you have, haven’t you?), I’ve been busy planning my first Christmas in England.
Every year for the last two years,we’ve gone home for the holidays. This year, we’ve just returned from a trip in Oct/Nov, so here we are, all wrapped up for Santa.
It’s our first ‘independent’ Christmas. Playing host seemed like a good idea four weeks earlier when the glint of Christmas spreads in glossy magazines and webpages promised hundreds of easy ways to have a fah-bulous Christmas for friends and family.
So, enthusiatically, we invited A&P and their little daughter over for Christmas lunch. Also invited were Baby brother and his new bride, the Namesake, who will be on duty and in London on Christmas Day.
Guest list done. We were quite pleased about our planning!
Then work took over and then our weekends were taken over by a trip to Bridgnorth to visit friends. The other two weekends went in carol singing – our church choir (Mr.R including) sang from 10am-12pm at one of the local shopping malls, raising over £1000 for Cancer Research.
Yesterday, we had a lovely candle-light carol service at 4 pm with the church choir and the school choir in attendance. Very festive. The church was decorated in red and green wreaths and it all looked very welcoming.
With all this excitement, one can hardly blame us for not thinking about Christmas day itself.
So with barely 24 hours to go, the menu is now almost done. The shops will go on a long holiday starting 5pm tonight. There’s nothing left to buy, yet the streets are full of last minute frantic shoppers. Buy, Buy, Buy.
This evening will be spent in preparation for tomorrow. The table is already set for six. My lovely Indian tablemats will glow in the candlelight. The Christmas tree gleams and the dozens of cards (the most either of us have ever received in a long, long time) remind us that we are remembered fondly during this season.
Under the tree are tiny gifts for each guest – nothing expensive at all, just tokens of the festivities. In India, gift giving is not really a big thing, but here it tends to be.
What’s left to do? Well, the cooking! Then there’s midnight mass and the day ahead tomorrow.
I hope you are all having a good time too. Stay warm, Stay happy.
Come back for seconds!