I love Christmas Eve.
I love stuffing the cupboards unitl the doors won't shut.
I love hearing the fridge shelves groan each time the door is opened.
I love the anticipation that fizzes from the kids (even now, aged 8 and 11).
I love the fact that G, each year, does not realise he needs wrapping paper until 23rd December.
I love going shopping on Christmas Eve for the three items I've forgotten.
I love doing the last minute wrapping and the hiding of presents.
We've always tried to have Christmas morning, at least, at home, just the four of us. It's been quite a selfish thing to do but it's the way we like it. I've always wanted the children to have their stockings and their presents at home, without being transported around the country. I suppose, as well, I want them to associate Christmas with being at home, with us. Will I be devastated when they say they want to spend Christmas in their homes? Probably.
This Christmas won't be the same in many ways but it will in others. We'll have our stockings by the fire, we'll do 'absent friends' at 11, we'll have a late lunch and I'll fall asleep during Dr. Who.
I'll be trying to think of the future as well as looking back at times with Dad. Maybe that sadness will help me appreciate the good things too.