Ho ho ho….

With less than two weeks to go before the big fella arrives, every Mum on the planet is probably broke, stressed, more than a little cranky and really looking forward to January, despite the fact that it is THE most depressing month of the year.

I wish there was such a thing as ‘the big fella’, Christmas would be a darn sight more relaxing.

This weekend we put the tree up. Laughably my Christmas tree is probably the most expensive thing I own. I kid you not. Purchased a couple of years ago, when I was either, feeling flush or I was too many Vodkas in to realise just how expensive this Christmas tree was (thinking about it, it must have been the latter as the last time I felt flush I was definitely pre-children), I popped it in my basket and proceeded to check-out, before you could say ‘bottoms-up’.

The tree itself is beautiful, it is a Norwegian Spruce, albeit a pretend one, pre-decked with 4 billion lights and is the easiest pop-up tree in the world. It came like a designer handbag (not that I have ever had a designer handbag), nicely placed in its own velvet bag, inside a box with its own maintenance kit and wipe clean cloth (never used), spare bulbs and a ‘this will never drop a needle‘ 10 year guarantee. It did however, cost more than it takes to run a small country, so I shall be keeping a very close eye on those needles!

The tree is the only thing I find stress free at Christmas. Once I have got it down from the loft that it. That bit isn’t stress free at all. That bastard loft hatch is going to trap me and maim me one day. I will be left dangling for hours, half in-half out, blood dripping from my nether regions, screaming for someone to come and rescue me, until I pass out with exhaustion or just fall in to a broken heap of broken bones on the landing. Either way it will probably be days before anyone finds me. By then, hopefully, Christmas will have come and gone.

Ho ho ho. 😉

Elsie’s who is a sucker for Christmas and has been playing Christmas songs since August(I wish I was exaggerating), has been about four days now decorating her bedroom. It looks like Santa’s Grotto in there and has more lights up than Blackpool Tower. The glare is enough to give you a headache and if you want to go in, you will need shades. There is no daytime/nighttime in Elsie’s room now and I think we can probably be seen from the moon. I keep expecting to see elves coming out of there.

Tom’s input in to the Christmas decorating festivities was asking if he could get the battlepass for fortnite, just in case there was a new Christmas skin? No. I don’t know what he is talking about either but it costs £7.99 so it’s clearly not a gift. Not that you would ever get anything for free where gaming is concerned. Doesn’t Microsoft know this is the season for giving? If there is one thing that miffs me it is the world of gaming. I could probably go on about it for hours. I won’t.

Although, the money I pay to Microsoft for Tom to be able to play online with his friends, and to have access to God alone knows what in the world of gaming, weapons, skins, and various other things, all purposely designed to keep our kids asking for more, is criminal. Yes. I know, I can say NO and believe me I do (a lot more than I say yes), but even with the small amount of things I do say yes to, it still adds up to a shockingly large amount of money, to play a game that I have already paid for, on a system I have also already paid for.

Tom insistence that he is going to be a ‘professional’ gamer when he ‘grows-up’ which is likely to be never, (do gamers ever grow up?), makes me want to rage at the same time as thinking if he ever does make any money out of gaming (it seems people do), I must remember to put in my invoice, so I can at least try to get back some of the hard-earned money that has been frittered in to cyberspace over the years and some compensation for the damage done to my hearing when he loses, or the internet drops out.

I am still Christmas shopping, having left it much later this year than normal. This makes me feel even more disorganised than usual. This also means I will end up overspending.

I read online this week that the average parent spends around £71 just filling a Christmas stocking. £71 pounds! Jesus the price of coal must have gone through the roof. The expense of Christmas is becoming really quite mind-boggling.

I have a rule that I never add up what I spend, as I would absolutely definitely turn in to the Grinch and cancel Christmas for all of eternity if I did. I don’t want to know how much I spend. It is a ridiculously obscene amount of money in comparison to what I earn and while I do not become Little Miss Extravagant at Christmas I do still adhere to the Christmas lists provided by Tom and Elsie, as best as I can.

At Christmas the sky is the limit (well not quite but you get my drift), it is the one time of the year they can ask for things that ordinarily they wouldn’t have a cat-in-hells chance of getting on a rainy Wednesday in March, like expensive trainers and designer hoodies, knowing full well that this is their only chance to grab something that doesn’t come from a charity shop. It is a small window of opportunity as once the 26th of December comes, Mummy Tightarse is back and she doesn’t open her purse often, hardly ever in fact.

I suppose I am a tiny bit old-fashioned in that sense.

I don’t want my children to think that they should have everything, just because it is available or just because Henry or Henrietta round the corner have it. In my view it doesn’t hurt for them to appreciate how hard I work to provide them with the things they do get and that in return I will expect to have help and for them to behave (Tom I’m looking at you!) and to have some idea of the meaning and value.

At Christmas especially I want them to appreciate how lucky they are (contrary to popular opinion) to have the things that are really important, family, love, a home, food in their bellies and nothing to worry about. It could be very different for them and while I do everything I can to make Christmas as magical as possible (without having to sell my soul to the devil), we need to remember the basics.

Talking of basics, Tom has mostly boxer shorts in his stocking this year, as the other day I saw him on the landing in what at first glance looked like bikini bottoms. Tom often walks around with not much on, even when it is minus Moscow outside, he’s a bit weird like that. He is often offering to fight Elsie while walking around in his pants, which has her screaming loudly at the thought of his naked body parts touching her and threatening to throw him down the stairs. On second glance however, he was wearing a pair of boxer shorts, just a very small pair, a pair he had quite clearly outgrown. This does not bother Tom in the slightest. I think he would probably have waited until he started squeaking before asking for some new ones.

It’s a good job the only bit of him that doesn’t seem to be growing much was well hidden still, or Elsie would have left home.

Tom has taken to growing all of a sudden and I have been noticing these sudden ‘manly’ changes over the last few weeks, his feet seem to be taking over the house and his legs are like tree trunks. You can no longer see his ribs when he takes his top off and he is going to be taller than me at any moment (although that will not be a hard milestone to reach), I kind of hoped he would be, as one thing you learn in dating is that no-one likes a short male, even if they are only short themselves.

I need him to find a wife one day. Heaven help her.

Then she can buy him his £71 worth of pants for his stocking.

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