Posts Tagged "Christmas babies"

T’was the Night Before Christmas, when all through the house …

Posted by on Dec 24, 2015 in Maternity Consultant | 0 comments

T’was the Night Before Christmas, when all through the house, Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, In hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there.   I can recite the whole book, well almost, word for word, and the pictures still make me feel a calm and a peace I cannot describe. Over the next few days, hundreds of families will be hunkering down for the Christmas break.  For many it will be a scaled up version of Whacky Races, driving around the country with the car groaning under the weight of gifts to give or gifts received, visiting friends and relatives, spending hours sitting in traffic only to be gleefully handed yet another mince pie or sausage roll on arrival at their destination – and having to muster up the rictus smile as you not-quite-so-gleefully polish it off before being ushered in to the twinkly grotto that was once their sitting room. Love it or hate it – it’s here and it’s here to stay, and thank God for that.  I love the smell of the real tree that I insist we buy, and cover at least 30 miles to identify as MY tree.  My poor husband has to suffer this every year we spend at home for Christmas, driving me miles from pile to pile of miserable trees, wincing as I make the nice man undo the netting again, shaking it out as I prowl around it rather like a sergeant major inspecting his troops, and with an equally critical and dissatisfied face.  “Nope, that’s not my tree”,  I say and, after two or three further scrawny or deformed specimens stand shuddering in front of me, I will jump back into the car and onwards to the next unsuspecting victim until I end up with the tree that calls to me, and the tree that ultimately is just the right one for this year. Some people visit relatives, I visit trees!  I love it. But more than this, I love the memories that my parents left me of all our Christmas Pasts.  I remember hand-bell ringers coming to our home in Somerset when I was barely a toddler; I remember carollers coming to the door to sing their little socks off in the infamous snowfall of 1962-63, when we were snowed in for days and the whole of the Mendips were covered with snow so deep that you couldn’t tell field from hedge, nor hedge from road.  I remember the 12ft snowman I built with my father on the lawn.  I remember Jack Frost on the inside of my bedroom windows the smell of the long, slow smoulder coming from peat slabs in the huge fireplaces in the dining and sitting rooms. I spent my first few baby/toddler years in Somerset but I grew up in Cornwall and we were lucky enough to have hundreds of huge pine trees on our land.  We were able to organise the annual ascent to lop off a suitable candidate year on year, dragging it homewards for the laying out of the (inevitable) non-functioning tree lights and the excitement of dragging the huge metal trunk, bursting at the seams with three generations’ worth of fragile and whisper-thin baubles, bells, icicles and figurines all made of glass.  My mother would put Kings College Cambridge Choir on on the Radio in the kitchen and ban us from coming in for at least four hours, leaving my gently simmering father to keep us entertained with the dressing of the tree whilst she...

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