Twelth night

And so the end of Christmas, officially. Even the church has to stop eeking it out now. Mother nature threw us another reminder that it is nature and not the human calender in charge of the seasons, with another heavy dump of snow.

Toby has been out on my sledge with Daddy. I am working, albeit from under the comfort and warmth of my duvet. Next door have had their baby girl ahead of schedule (and the snow!). The last Christmassy thing for me to do is to put together my scrapbook album for this season.

Done and done.

Goodbye for now

Goodbye for now

Every year I knew Christmas was over on the 5th January. I know 12th night is the 6th – a big thing in France I think – but you see, we would almost always be back at school by now (as the kids are this year, snow aside) but also the 5th is my mum’s birthday. She would always have the decorations down to make space for her cards on the mantelpiece and, even now, to me the 5th is Christmas done and dusted and time to return to ‘normal’ life. I like that Christmas overlaps the old year and the new but now is time to sort the recycling for collection, put the wrapping paper away for another year, and pack away the decorations.

I took all the shinies down over the last couple of days and dragged our tree (still looking pretty good!) to its frozen end outside the house ready to be chopped up and used by the city parks. Our cleaner very obliging vacuumed up the trail of pine needles it left in its wake. I spent yesterday sorting laundry and today I’m back on client work.

Yep, Christmas is over and 2010 is here. I’m excited. Bring it on.

Neither blue nor manic.

Mostly freezing and quietly industrious, for a Monday. My cleaner was in today after the holidays and helped me drag my house back into some semblance of normal. Decorations are down, laundry is turning and hangin and waiting for attention. Children were back at nursery (but currently downstairs and making a racket!) and husband back at work. The return to normality is actually welcome as I like pottering about here myself most of the time.

But clients are starting to clamour. My attention is being called upon. Back into the fray I go.

The Best Bit



omnomnom, originally uploaded by RellyAB.

“Toby, what was your favourite bit of Christmas?”

“When Santa and Rudolph ate their snack!”

Fresh, tender and new

2010 by redstamp

2010 by redstamp

So, as I get older the wonder of Christmas (wonderful though it still is) is replaced with an excitement at the New Year. I posted about it a day or so ago, of sorts, but I still don’t understand why NYE gets the fuss. I’d much rather celebrate January 1st. The New Year is a time for me to think about new opportunities and I’m looking forward to embracing them, making changes, trying to form new profitable habits, setting new goals.

And I know it isn’t just me. Whole spades of twitter friends have said they are glad to see 2009 go and ready to embrace 2010. It’s a raw new world out there, sometimes amazing and sometimes terrifying, but I’m all set to tie up loose ends and look to pastures new.

Watch out, 2010. I’m sincerely ready to kick ass and take names.

Say hello to your future.

This house is something of a mess today. So my first resolution is to tidy up. But then it always is. That’s the thing about housework, it doesn’t seem to stop. Still, the time for the decorations to come down is nigh. I’m going to sort out the cupboards for housing my scrapbooking supplies and get set for the working week, which doesn’t actually kick in until the second week of January properly – purely so I can sort out paperwork and processes. First step to all this is a big GTD braindump. The new year seems a good time to give myself permission to start afresh and review all of my todos.

This evening I do have one last festive fun task left, and that’s to make a gingerbread house for Toby and Jemima to enjoy decorating tomorrow. Which reminds me I must Google for a good frosting recipe. Something akin to supaglue to stand up to the handling of two preschoolers, I think!

Make and Do

Make: 2010

Make: 2010

My one little word for this year is Make. I will go into details in another post but I hope to embrace the phrase ‘Get excited and make things!’ this coming year, including writing things (for work and pleasure).

I was also pointed by Ali to 6changes, a simple concept for introducing new habits in baby steps. I haven’t picked all of mine yet but my first couple are going to have to overlap due to deadlines:

Learn 2000+ kanji – starting Jan 1st
Write a book on microcopy and self-publish – starting February
Eat healthily – starting pretty much straight away with drinking more water, but properly kicking in, in March.

In terms of fun projects for 2010:
scrapbook more
learn to crochet properly
take a lofi (iphone or holga) pic everyday
plan a kickass 30th birthday
save for my trip to Japan
learn to drive
spend as much time as possible immersed in Japanese language studies
cross stitch, especially for Christmas next year
learn to use my new mixer
play with my camera and learn some new tricks – maybe do a course
sew some more with my machine
learn to play the piano
bake more fun things

Obviously there will be stuff that gets in the way or changes up but I think most of these are in the spirit of ‘making’.

Auld Lang Whine

New year’s eve. Not my favourite night of the year:
It pretty much marks the end of the holidays (although this year the weekend has the good grace to extend it by three days)
Everything is expensive, taxis are impossible, and there is a pressure to be out, you get in late and the kids still get up at 6am.
But stay in and the TV is crap, takeaway is prone to go astray on route, and the kids still get up at 6am.

For the last few years, I have been rebellious. I buy some food from M&S, I scarf a small drink from our drinks collection, we watch a DVD we got from Christmas and go to bed by 11pm!

Start the year as you mean to go on, I say.

Fun Times

Christmas 2009 was:

having the girls over for dinner and drinks.
cute red and white decorations scattered about
marking gifts with a ‘T’ or a ‘C’
Toby declaring he wanted to be an angel and not a farmer in his nativity, or failing that a fireman.
mulled wine fizzy cocktail
adorable baby giggles
mulled cider
gingerbread lattes
a real tree
Toby declaring the best bit of Christmas Day being Santa and Rudolph eating their snacks.
The Gruffalo and the Cbeebies panto.
snow!
suprise presents
filling stockings
a twinkling palm tree outside
iPhone polaroid pics
taking videos of the kids with our phone and the flip.
being at home with my baby
a Mummy and Toby trip to see the dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum
cherry cheesecake and ham in coca-cola
deciphering Japanese originals of Prince of Tennis
listening to Rajipuri
writing a journal

Looking back, going ahead

Today is rotten weather. Really I can’t express how yuck it is out there. Wet, grey, miserable. I was really beginning to worry about all four of us being cooped up in here again but so far it hasn’t been too bad, thanks to a reprise of the cbeebies panto (again!), some chocolate, a viewing of Follow That Bird and now the Sesame Street Christmas album.

We are companionably pottering about and my head is caught between tidying up the new toys here and thoughts of the coming year and my one little word. Last year’s was ‘complete’ but I can’t say I was totally faithful to it. In fact I think I was attempting to fool myself. This year I shall pick a word more in line with the ‘Now Habit’ and ‘6 things’. I’m not going to make resolutions but I am going to list some goals for the coming year and some things I’d like to try.

And so, the wind whirls, Elmo sings and I think on.