Ho ho, no. Not yet.

When I was teaching Dystopian fiction, I was once asked by a student, what my idea of dystopia would be… ‘A world where it’s Christmas every day. Sharp intake of breath, 30 pairs of shocked, disappointed eyes on me. I’m not even sorry.

Yes, that’s right. Call me a Scrooge, a Grinch, whatever – but that would be hell on earth. Christmas, and all that goes with it, every day? Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas – I do. But since I’ve had my children, things have changed in the way I approach the festive season. I now know that Christmas does not happen. Christmas is created. My children love it so much that I feel such an enormous sense of pressure to get it right.

I now understand why my mum does that mumbling-list-writing from late July, starts writing the cards in October and has done the Christmas Day washing up by the 23rd December. She also loves Christmas… she just wants to do it well. And that can be somewhat of a burden.

My plan this year is to make light of that. To embrace the hilarity of Christmas with 3 young children (one with a Christmas time birthday) and a husband who is (apparently) allergic to Christmas shopping.

Thus, here begins a series of posts about how we survive the festive period. When I say survive, it makes it sound like it’s an ordeal (some days it is an ordeal, I’m not going to lie) and other days it’s a beautiful, harmonious joyful affair – either way, it’s exhausting. Join me, laugh at me, share your stories of Christmas chaos.

Final thought for the day:

Son: How old is Father Christmas?

Me: Ooh very old

Son: But how old? If he’s magic, how did he get so old? Why would you magic yourself old? That can’t be fun.

Me: Well…

Son: And where’s his children? Are they getting old too? Or are they dead? That’s weird that he’s still making presents for everyone if his children are dead.

Me: Right. Well, many things to think about there. Many, wonderful things. Shall we open the Christmas biscuits?

Son: (under breath, shaking head) Does surprise me you’ve never asked these things yourself.



  1. Ooh, the curly Santa questions are beginning here as well. Like, ‘How come Santa asked me what I wanted for Christmas when we saw him at the shops? I already TOLD him that when I saw him at the kindy party!’. Am finding myself spinning all kinds of elaborate lies when my intention was always just to allow the children to believe, for as long as it lasted. Slippery slope, as it turns out!

    I’m completely disorganised when it comes to making Christmas magical. Even more so than usual this year. Haven’t sent one Christmas card so far. Bah, humbug, etc. (Bah, laziness and poor time-management, to be accurate). There’s a silver lining though. One of my friends rang me in tears at the beginning of December because her eldest kid had discovered the spot where ‘Santa’ hid all the presents (that she’d been carefully stowing away since the June toy sales), then gleefully revealed the bounty to his sisters. Christmas ruined, existence of the fat man thrown into doubt, relationship with son hanging by a thread… and all I could think was ‘Well, at least there’s no danger of that happening HERE. No presents to find if they haven’t been hidden. Or bought. Or even chosen from the online catalogue yet’. Hurrah!

    Hope it’s a lovely one, wherever you end up on the organisation meter. And I’m sure your kids will think it’s magical no matter what. xo


    • I want it to last forever! We were talking just the other day about the Sindy house we inherited from you and what a special present that was and how much we played with it. Happy days!xx


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