Tradition

I know, I know. Christmas was ages ago, and everyone has already moved on.

Well, everyone except me….

I love Christmas; I was always that kid who would bug his parents to get a tree as early as possible (and i’m pretty sure they took pleasure in leaving it as late as possible every year!)

And every single New Year I struggle to let it go.

No, not the tree…..the whole thing.

I clung on so tight this year that I only just finished the Christmas Baileys last night (I love Baileys) and there is still a chocolate Santa kicking about somewhere in our living room.

So I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas period like we did, and the happiest of Happy New Years to you all!

The last few weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind for us, as i’m sure they have for you. Christmas, New Year and a Belfast wedding were all sandwiched in between two very long train journeys (London to Edinburgh, and back) and a multitude of 5k runs in all conditions. And that’s not to mention the million different catch-ups with friends and family that come along at this time.

The weirdest thing is, I think what I love the most about the festive period is the sheer repetition of it all. It should be completely unbearable, when you think about it.

The same old Christmas songs.

The same ridiculous amount of money spent on socks, chocolate oranges and copious amounts of booze.

And the same old family traditions, year after year after year.

It’s all about tradition after all. And the best thing about tradition is that, while it’s all supposed to be age-old and steeped in history, it’s also totally fine to just go ahead and make up your own ones.

For example, every year from now on, we have decided to have our own mini Christmas dinner for just the three of us.

(Side note – if any more little ones do happen to come along at any point, they will also be welcome to our Xmas Dinner….but just don’t tell my wife I said that)

And since Marley played the role of the Gruffalo’s Child in his nursery nativity play (nothing at all to do with the nativity) we now have a new tradition of watching the video of that every year.

(Don’t worry, Dad, it won’t take the place of The Snowman….we can still watch that too)

But then there’s the old tradition stuff. For instance, in my family, Christmas doesn’t really begin until I have put the angel – which I made when I was about five years old – on top of the tree.

All the other decorations can be put up by anyone, but that particular work of art must be placed on top of the tree by me.

And now, in true family tradition, I have passed on that mantle to Marley. So it is now he, and his tiny little hands, who must place the sacred angel on top of the tree to announce Christmas officially open. As shown…

Tradition and family are the real meaning of Christmas for me; maybe that’s why I find it so hard to let it go each year. I saw the look in Marley’s Great Granny’s (my wife’s Granny’s) eye’s when she had all of her family together in one place; Grandad and Grandma, their kids, their kids’ offspring all running around…..and Great Granny overseeing it all.

If only you could bottle that…..wait, maybe that’s what Baileys actually is!

Happy New Year!

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