The Build Up to Christmas

I absolutely love Christmas. I think I'm more excited than my kids, although their noise levels each day may suggest otherwise. The build up to Christmas is a wonderful time



From the moment I wake up, I turn all of our Christmas lights on, whilst my husband watches in horror as the electrical meter starts whirring round.

My iPod is permanently on Xmas Carol Shuffle. And I've been eating mince pies and yule log since November - ostensibly to test out who does the best, but I keep on forgetting to record the results so I have to start again, and again and again...

Getting into the Christmas spirit

I've done the rounds of all the nativity plays and carol services. I've even been known to gate crash ones that my sons aren't appearing in. I've dug out the Santa hats and reindeer headbands and I will be getting all of the family to wear them, if they like it or not. And it's mainly not.

The Christmas trees have been up for weeks, and as a result are starting to wilt already. And the stockings and Santa sacks are waiting by the fire.

It's the most wonderful time of the year

My one disappointment this year is that my Dad didn't send me an advent calendar. I'm guessing he has finally thought that age 43 I'm too old for all that. Or he's going senile and forgot. Either way, it was upsetting, so I went and bought my own.

I believe you can never be too old for Christmas. To me, it's the best time of year.

Scrooge in the family

However, my husband has an altogether different Christmas experience. He becomes completely grumpy at the first note of a Christmas carol. Buying a Christmas tree with him is painful, as he finds the whole thing a rip off. He says we could just go and chop one down in the forest. I'd like to see him try.

My husband always leaves his Christmas shopping until the last minute. One year I got a diary, which he'd been given by a bank and simply wrapped it up and put a label on it for me. As we share the same first initial, he thought I would love the idea of having a personalised diary. Clueless!

Christmas parties keep my husband busy

But what my husband does do very well at this time of year is make use of all the festive lunches and drinks!

So from the beginning of December I am pretty much a lone parent, at home, bringing up the kids. My husband never says no to anything, and so 5 nights a week (and lunches too) he is out on what I see as a bit of a jolly, but what he calls "touting for business". If a woman said that, it would have altogether different connotations.

Round robins and #XmasJammies

There is possibly one thing I would change about Christmas, and that's the round robin Christmas cards. You know the ones I mean; where you get a typed up summary of Little Jonny's achievements for the year, and a picture of Little Emily dressed up as an angel. Together with an A4 collage of photos from their 8 family holidays they have taken that year. Pass me the bucket.

By the way, the ultimate round robin (Xmas Jammies) can be found on YouTube, where an all American perfect family have taken this concept one stage further.

On that note, I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Amanda Coxen, Working Mum and Tinies Director

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It was my 4 year old son's first experience of Tinies Kids Clubs. Photos on your website and planned activities, helped me help him prepare, so he was excited. He loved it. The staff, the range of activities, and making new friends. He could not wait to go back after the first day.
Mary, Middlesex, Holiday Club