I am now a week into the Christmas break and at last I have a quiet moment to do what I want rather than what I need to do.
The grandkids have gone home to be identified by Santa so they get the right presents. Ann is sleeping trying to gather some strength for tomorrows busy schedule and I am here savouring a quiet five minutes from the madness that is Christmas.
In recent years I have noticed that the festivities have moved away from the simple things like catching up with friends and family to the lets shop until we drop from exhaustion and then get ready for the Boxing Day sales.
This year is going to be different in our house. Yes the grandkids have what they asked for within reason but I refuse to be dragged along by someone else’s idea of what Christmas should look like.
Tomorrow we are at our daughters house for Christmas Dinner and she has been stressed beyond all belief because she wants a picture postcard version of what Christmas Day should be like.
We have all fallen into that trap but as the years roll on I have discovered in my recollections I never once remember the quality of the Christmas dinner but I remember vividly the people who I loved and who are no longer here, the friends who made me laugh and the family who infuriated me for the rest of the year but made me laugh until I cried.
So in the middle of this madness we call Christmas I hope you all have a great time with your friends and family and make experiences that will last a lifetime because these things only happen in the moment and they are gone and cannot be recreated.
So tonight for the first time in forty years Ann and myself will go to sleep in a house which has no excited children going to bed, I don’t have to eat a carrot, half of mince pie or drink half of glass of sherry to add to the magic.
But I can tell you I would trade an organ in a heartbeat to do it one more time. So to all you young parents out there who have had to track down Unicorns for daddies little princesses and the latest technology for mummies little soldiers remember every little detail because before you know it they will have flown the nest and it will never feel the same.
So on that maudlin note I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and remember enjoy the ride you are only here once!