3 Nov 2013
Sunday is here. Following on from last year’s innovation, this Blogvember will feature a Confessional post on Sundays. Without further ado, for ado seems unnecessary, this Sunday I confess I am not ready for it to be December again. I have barely recovered from the last time.
December in our family is not just about Christmas. It is about birthdays. A lot of birthdays.
In our immediate circle of family and friends in the month from 28 November to 27 December there are nine birthdays. And there will be another added this year, when my sister-in-law has her second child. The December birthday honour roll includes two nieces, my brother, my son, and close friends children turning three and four; including one set of twins. I am always wary of adding them up in case I forget someone.
There are also a minimum of four childrens parties. The attempts to do combined parties are thwarted by interstate relatives and grandparents, or other difficult to work around family commitments. This means that we are at birthday parties every weekend for the whole of December, sometimes two in the one day. This is before the Christmas celebrations are taken into account. It makes me tired just thinking about it. This year I thought I had gone out early enough in the planning. I booked the hall. Set the date. Announced. Only to have been too late again. It’s three separate parties for the three kids who are turning four in the space of two days.
The shopping alone is enough to kill me. The present choosing, wrapping, card writing and arranging is a marathon. The cooking, and cleaning and in between it all, the odd bit of Christmas preparation. Last year, I wrote myself a list. It is in my diary. It has a detailed explanation of where I put the birthday accoutrements and in which box the Christmas lights have seen out the year. I glanced at the list the other day. I promptly shut the diary.
Boxing Day used to be all about cricket, ham rolls and beer. It is now about making the 27th of December special for my beautiful boy. I promise myself every year I will be one of those organised and on-top-of-it people who shop at the mid-year toy sales, who buy in bulk and wrap as they go. Bless me father, for I have sinned.
Oh how I laugh when I get to November and there are no age appropriate gift cards in the box. Tasteful adult cards? I have millions of them. Ones with dinosaurs and fairies and stuff little kids like? Totally absent. My continued lack of preparation and incremental forethought stares me in the face, as I peer into the box hoping that something will appear. Better get shopping. Actually, better have a gin before I start.
Suggestions welcome for birthday presents for girls turning three, four and nine, and for brother who has everything.