OK, this draft was started 3 months ago! I did mean to post it during the run up to Chriustmas. Obviously. It’s about a Christmas tree. The Christmas tree in the picture was still up. I was staring at it while typing, I couldn’t avoid it! And then … well, life happened, stuff happened. It always does when I’m trying to write something meaningful. Or alcohol fuelled. Although the case with the latter is that said alcohol invariably runs out and I’m left with random traces of what I was intently thinking when the thought process began…
I’m pretty anal when it comes to doing things properly, particularly around the house. everything has to be done just-so. Organised. Planned. In the same order each time.
If I’m out, working or whatever, and O/H decides to ‘help’ by doing the laundry, it ends up being more work.
If I have a laundry day, I have all the laundrybins emptied, bedrooms scouted for socks and pants hidden under beds and down the sides of cupboards; everything washed according to colour/material/owner/importance; at suitable temperatures and speeds; dried in a suitable method corresponding to the labels/requirements; then folded/ironed/flattened; and all put away carefully, all in the same day.
If O/H decides to ‘help’ ; it’s a hotch potch of things all washed at 60 on the ‘quick wash’ setting, chucked in the dryer; and piled into a washing basket and left to crease until the “cleaning fairy” comes to sort it out.
So, recently, now that I’ve been working my Christmas Job for a couple of weeks, I’ve been out of the home more than I’ve been in it. And when I’ve been in it I’ve been trying to sleep.
And last year, he complained he was left to ‘do it all’ (i.e. wrap the presents) himself. So, we’ve already had a present wrapping evening.
He brought the 4 (yes, 4, very large) boxes of Christmas decorations (that we’ve collected over the years in our various countries and locations around the world) and set up the tree (that’s 5 years past its 10-year guarantee and still looking good; so we’ve saved cutting down 15 perfectly innocent trees) ; and then, with the help of the children (ARGH!), and now, the Scout Elf (don’t shoot me, it’s our first year; and I have a friend to blame for introducing the idea); have been helping…D.I.S.A.S.T.E.R
Years ago, I was a stickler for everything being red and gold, only, on the main tree. And NO LAMETTA! (Mother had a phase of chucking far too much – although ANY is far too much as far as I’m concerned – lametta, very randomly, all over the tree after meticulously placing every other ornament; no I’m allergic to the stuff. Emotionally.)
When we moved around; it was nice to have the odd ‘special’ ornament placed with pride to display, amongst the carefully selected co-ordinating decorations.
And, I have my preferred order of placement….you know….lights first; then all the gold ornaments, each varying size/shape group done seperately, then all the red ornaments, in a similar fashion, standing back in between the placement of each group of ornaments to ensure the feng shui is just right and the placements look even and equally distrubuted around the entire tree (from each angle from which the tree can be viewed, of course); followed by the intentionally clear and consice placement of the special, one-off, family heirloom ornaments, showing our family life over the years and around the globe. Some represent family members who can’t be with us. Others show images or are themselves reminders of the children as they have grown up, from their different Christmasses, to particularly delightful hand made ornaments from school.
Finally, any large expanses of green remaining (not much), is filled with some classy looking, thick and sumptuous tinsel, in corresponding colours to the rest of the decor.
And, last but not least, the angel we’ve had since our first Christmas together is then places atop the tree.
Not this year.
Nope. I ended up coming home to the ready decorated tree that the children and O/H had decorated themselves.
And I lacked the energy all season to bother removing everything and starting again.
So, I spent all December looking at it. And it drastically reduced my Christmas viewing pleasure of “Christmas 24” and other such sappy seasonal film channels, since the tree was positioned in very close proximity to the TV.
(Incase anyone’s wondering, the tree train track is usually there, since it was given to #1 for his first, or second, Christmas; it’s just usually blended in better and more effective and pleasing to the eye. Also, you really have to have the train running on it to enjoy the full effect…)
Lesson learned. Stealthily decorate the tree in the middle of the night next year before anyone else gets their hands on the decorations boxes …