Exploding with Yuletide joy

Aaaarghhh! It has just dawned on me that the crazy season is well and truly upon us. What finally brought it home to me was not the decorations everywhere you look, or the sound of Frosty the Snowman or Silent Night coming from every shop you pass. No. None of that. What did it was Linda going to Marks and Spencer's with her Mum. Linda and her Mum go to 'Markees' (as they affectionately call it) together in December, and only in December. The purpose? To begin the grand Christmas food stocking up. Now the kitchen is full of Marks and Spencer's carrier bags full of delicious little delicacies that I am strictly prohibited from even looking at until Christmas Eve. Centre stage is a huge box of Christmas crackers which, judging by the weight of the box, contains gold bars as surprises. The tree will be going up next Friday. We have a little family tradition that centres around the decorating of the tree. Basically, I get all the decorations out of storage and put the tree up. We put on our Chieftains CD (The Bells of Dublin), and then the fun begins. My contribution to the evening is to drink, single-handedly, a bottle of vintage ruby port, and to let Linda know if she has missed any bits. Liam's part in this is to moan about the music, and annoy his Mum. With the tree finished, and with me getting ever merrier, we put on music and have a wee dancing party while Mizzie tries to pull the decorations off the tree. This is my favourite night of the whole Christmas period - it is the night that I normally get into the Christmas spirit. Christmas and port really do go together very well indeed. But, as we still have a week to go before we put our tree up, all I have to say to you is BAH HUMBUG!


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