I’m currently surrounded by baubles, penguins, Santa Claus, beads, glitter, gingerbread houses, and I’ve just devoured half of a (very small) panettone. I’m feeling incredibly (full) festive, so, tomorrow evening, I’ll be decorating the tree and turning the apartment into Santa’s grotto.
Decorating the tree brings back many precious memories. I remember when me and my siblings would help my parents decorate the tree/house. We’d put on Cliff Richard, make hot chocolates with marshmallows & cream, and dance around the living room, wrapped up in fairy lights and snow spray everything (even each other). After my father passed away just before Christmas 1998, we still kept this tradition alive. I suppose it was a comfort to us, to keep things the same – knowing that he was once a part of it. Of course, it never was the same, because he truly was the life and soul of it all. All he ever wanted was for us children to have the most magical Christmas – and he gave us exactly that. I cannot thank him enough for the endless repeats of Wham and Slade, the sheer joy he spread, the muddy footprints he’d leave on the stairs (evidence that Santa had been), those butterflies I’d feel when he tucked me into bed on Christmas Eve, the excited screams on Christmas morning, when he’d open the living room door, and I’d be greeted with a pile of presents & chocolates for breakfast, but mostly, for teaching me what this festive season is truly about – friends, family and love.