This Christmas will be the first we've had without both our children being at home. Daniel's girlfriend, Jasmine, is American and she doesn't have any family in the UK so she's celebrated with us for the last three years. This year, however, they're going to spend Christmas with her family in Colorado, leaving just me, Mick and Eleanor at home for Christmas as my parents have stopped coming to us for Christmas now too.
They won't be able to take presents with them so the main bulk of their present is money this year but we have bought them a few things to open. On Saturday, we went down to see them in Essex and to exchange presents too. We were going to stay overnight but in the end we decided we'd do it in a day. We set off early and it took us four and a half hours to get there. Coming home wasn't quite so bad, we did it in about three and a half hours. We're saving the gifts they've given us to open on Christmas Day but they'll be opening their gifts before they go.
I try to hold off doing anything Christmas related until we get into December, apart from buying gifts that is. I don't put the tree up, listen to Christmas music or watch Christmas films until the big day approaches but, Saturday being the 1st of December, we went all out and listened to Christmas songs on the radio the whole way there and part of the way home too.
We had a really lovely day with them, went out for a delicious meal and caught up on each other's news. Living so far apart we don't get to see each other very often these days, this was only the third time I've seen them this year, Mick's seen them more as he sometimes works nearby and they'll meet up and go out for a meal then, but we make the times we do see each other count. I'm sure we'll catch up with each other on Skype on Christmas Day and it will be lovely for Jasmine to spend Christmas with her own family for a change. We will miss them though.
As today is the 3rd of December, I just thought I'd mention that it's thirty years to the day that Mick and I got engaged. Looking back, such a lot has happened in those thirty years and yet on the other hand it doesn't seem like any time at all.
What a lovely day and it'll be nice for your son to get to know his future in-laws better :) It's so nice to look back at how you met and got together. John and I didn't officially get engaged, nor did he actually ask me to marry him. He saw a pretty, little ruby flower ring in a small jewellers shop and bought it for me and put it on my ring finger and that was it LOL Best, Jane xReplyDelete
They visited Jasmine's family last year but not over the Christmas period. The weather will probably be a shock to Daniel as it's much colder than here at this time of year, he's taking plenty of warm clothes with him. Mick didn't really ask me to marry him either, some of our friends had got engaged and Mick said something along the lines of we'll probably get married soon and that was that, we went ring shopping.Delete
We are lucky to have Francesca with us from the 23rd to Jan 2nd. We like to have the tree up by now but it has not happened yet.ReplyDelete
It's nice to have family with you right over Christmas and New Year, the time together is precious. Plenty of time for getting the tree up yet.Delete
We are the same here, Christmas starts in December, we had Christmas music on whilst decorating the tree and house. Yesterday we had our 1st mince pie, they were yummy. Time does fly by, and as your family grow you do have less time together. But whilst they are happy and healthy it's still good to watch from afar.ReplyDelete
Although I love Christmas, I don't want it to start too soon but once December hits I'm all for going all out and enjoying every minute of it. That's exactly how I feel, as much as I love having my family around me, I'm happy knowing that they're happy, enjoying themselves and having new experiences. I'm sorry we won't be all together over Christmas but I know they'll be having a wonderful time and that makes me very happy.Delete
I'm with you Jo, no Christmas festivities until December. We have no decorations up yet, just the Advent calendar and candles, but we did listen to Christmas music over the weekend, including a strange mash-up of Roy Wood and The Wombles! This Christmas will be different for you and perhaps feel a bit strange, but still wonderful. xReplyDelete
There's no decorations up here yet but I do want to get everything done for when Eleanor comes home from uni on the 15th, including having all my presents bought and wrapped. We listened to Magic on the way down to see Daniel, they were playing non-stop Christmas music, I think we heard just about every Christmas song, no Wombles though.Delete
All day long we will be wombling in the snow,Delete
We wish you a wombling Merry Christmas...
Ha ha, I remember watching them on Top of the Pops when it was in the charts.Delete
I had Christmas music playing when I was decorating too, it's sort of obligatory isn't it :-) For years I have started putting up the decorations on December 1st and I leave them up until New Years Eve, I've had enough of them by then, lol. I have them out for the month because a lot of my ornaments are stitched and I only get to enjoy them once a year. I'm sure that although you will all miss Daniel it will be good for him to meet and get to know his girlfriends family too, and as you say you will be able to skype on the day.ReplyDelete
We have Christmas music playing when we decorate too, and for present wrapping. I think you've got a good excuse to have the decorations up for the whole month, the beautiful stitched ornaments deserve to be admired during the whole of December. Daniel visited Colorado last year and met the whole family and some of them have visited them over here too. They went to Jasmine's sisters wedding last year and that sister is now expecting her first baby so they're already planning to visit again at some point next year after the baby's born. And to think, we could hardly get Daniel on a plane to Majorca when he was young and now long haul flights don't bother him.Delete
It sounds like a nice day with your family. The relationship is starting to sound very serious to me? Maybe wedding bells in the future? :)ReplyDelete
We had a lovely day. Yes, it's a serious relationship, they're living together, though I thought Eleanor's four year relationship was serious too but she ended it with her boyfriend in the summer, she's got a new boyfriend now.Delete
Time is such a strange thing and this time of year is one for much reflection. congratulations on your engagement anniversary. It won't be long I'm sure before we will be in the same situation with our two having to be with other families at Christmas, and so the circle of life continues to roll. I too wait until December 1st before beginning to get festive xReplyDelete
It's funny how time can seem to fly and yet go so slow at the same time, isn't it? I don't suppose we'd have had Daniel and Jasmine with us for the last three years if her family lived in the UK, they don't seem to go to one family or the other all the time usually but we're in a bit of a strange situation with Jasmine having no family over here. It'll be nice for Daniel to experience an American Christmas this year with Jasmine's family.Delete
It's so hard when our kids grow up and move away. Ours lives in Japan, but comes home for Christmas thankfully.ReplyDelete
They do have to make their own lives and that's often away from where their parents live, it just makes the times we're together even more special.Delete
We seem to have a different Christmas each year now the girls are married and have families of their own. We have learnt to embrace the changes and enjoy each one as it comes. Sounds like you had a wonderful weekend.ReplyDelete
I agree, times change and we have to make the most of those changes. I'm thinking up some new traditions to go along with some of the old ones.Delete
When children grow up, everyone has to make changes. And if everyone knows this, and is flexible, the Holiday Season is a lot less stressful. You are doing so. Wonderful!ReplyDelete
I know you put off, till December. :-) Which is your choice. And thought of you, when doing my Dec. 1st post! :-))))))
I was into-sparkle ✨ on my blog, before Dec. And finally got our home decoration up, this weekend. 🎄 :-)
Shops seem to fill with Christmas fare earlier and earlier each year and Christmas music starts being played well before the season so I always hold off things myself until December arrives and then I go full on into Christmas mode and embrace everything it has to offer.Delete
We don't do things til typically mid December and like you only see our daughter a couple of times of year. Hope all goes well for you without your usual family there. It's hard changing traditions.ReplyDelete
I don't feel under pressure at all to trim up at the beginning of the month, just so long as it's done for Eleanor coming home from uni. I think it's easier for families when they live apart in this day and age of technology. Skype's a great invention.Delete
I always like to wait until December before any decorating or serious planning begins. I'm sure I'd soon get fed up of it all if I started preparations too soon.ReplyDelete
It will be a slightly different Christmas for you. Maybe an opportunity to create some new traditions. X
I'm still looking forward to Christmas even though Daniel and Jasmine won't be with us. I've always loved Christmas and though it's nice for family to be together, it doesn't always happen that way, it's just a case of making the most of it and I'm sure we'll all do that.Delete
Time and circumstance change the way we celebrate too. But as I drive through town and farmland I see the lights of those I do not know, but who touch me with their decorations. it makes the world seem a smaller place and the distance between us lesserReplyDelete
I agree, the world is a big place but it seems all the smaller when we connect in some way.Delete
I'm glad you had that lovely day together, Jo. My children are here in US with me, but my son and his family are in Arizona which seems as far as England from here. We just got together for Thanksgiving. It was wonderful. With technology, however, they can seem quite close at Christmas. P. xReplyDelete
How lovely to spend Thanksgiving together with your son and his family. It's quite common for families to be spread all over the world these days but it doesn't seem as bad as it used to do with all the technology we have now.Delete
So lovely you got to spend time together, it´s really hard when they are so far away, so really precious. Like you, this will be our first christmas on our own. Rebecca is even working Christmas eve, although I did look at flights but the prices are horrendous. We do have friends coming round on the day, so suppose the decorations will be put up eventually, it was usually Rebecca and myself doing that. xcxReplyDelete
It was a short visit but better than nothing. It's certainly going to be different this year but Eleanor will still be with us and I think her boyfriend is coming to stay at some point between Christmas and New Year so we'll enjoy that. It's horrendous how air fares increase over the Christmas period, Daniel and Jasmine are leaving on the 14th and coming home on the 4th of January, it was cheaper for them to go for a longer period away from peak Christmas times.Delete
Oh that's nice, grwat to meet up before Christmas especially with a trip to Colorado on the cards. The anticipation of wondering what's in the present definitely enhances it! Good old Skype, what would we do without it. XReplyDelete
It was lovely to meet up, I'm sure we'll do it again and have more time together early next year. Skype must be one of the best inventions for families who live far apart.Delete
I often feel that way - that it's been a long time and no time at all, esp. when it comes to my husband and especially the kids. We do the same as you, when it comes to opening gifts - we save any gifts received until Christmas morning to open...it just feels more special that way.ReplyDelete
It would have been nice to open gifts together but the 1st of December did seem a bit early. It will be a nice surprise when we do open them on Christmas Day.Delete
Time does go by so quickly, especially as you get older, I often wonder where the years have gone. This will be our first Christmas without daughter so just the two of us. I'm encouraging her to spend the day with her partner as they are now living together. I don't put any deccies up until at least the fourteenth! xxxReplyDelete
I remember that we had our first Christmas together in our own home the year we started living together. After that we always went to my mum and dad's, until we had children and then we've spent every year in our own home and various people have come to us for Christmas dinner over the years. It will be very strange this year being just the three of us.Delete
Christmas has long been known for family get-together's. I remember as a child we used to see so many Aunties, Uncles, cousins etc. But as the years went on things seemed to change and families were far more spread out... getting together was more difficult.ReplyDelete
The last few years we have found it easier to see family both before, during and after Christmas as it's the only way with commitments (both us) and others have...
We still have fun, and Christmas lasts longer. LOL!
All the best Jan
Times change as the years pass by. We used to have a full house on Christmas Day, people coming for dinner and others just calling in but things have changed bit by bit. This year there'll be just the three of us for dinner but we'll spend some time during the day with my mum and dad.Delete
A different Christmas for us this year too, the first time in 33 years that we will have woken up Christmas morning just the two of usReplyDelete
That will seem strange for you. See it as an opportunity to invent a new tradition, something you do on Christmas morning when there's just the two of you.Delete
Change is inevitable. You can embrace the 'peace' of Christmas and find some new and different activities for the day. May it be an easy day for you, not having to cater for a big family bunch.ReplyDelete
Our family is getting too big to share one meal now so we split into two groups for lunch and get together for afternoon tea and exchanging gifts.
It will be different but as you say, we can enjoy the change. We've got a grown up family now so things are going to be different anyway. Like you, our Christmas has changed over the years anyway, so this is just another shift in how we celebrate.Delete