It’s all over for another year! The midnight was something we hadn’t done in years so was a bit of a treat in terms of a lie in on Christmas morning. Father Christmas had visited and we took it in turns to draw items from our stockings until we’d all run out. Very satisfying! Drinks with the neighbours were bubbly. Lunch went well despite the slightly fraught cook, and I managed to get the pudding properly alight for the first time ever (it needs much more alcohol than I thought necessary). The cracker jokes were even more dreadful than usual. We managed a few pressies before the Queen, and the rest with The Incredibles. We only drank tea, and couldn’t manage more than a few nibbles for supper. Parents went home on the 27th saying they’d enjoyed themselves, and the in-laws started arriving. Another family tradition: 5 siblings with their 5 spouses and 2 children each, plus the patriarch and his wife. A healthy 22 to feed! A planned leftover turkey was turned into a Thai- and an Indian-style salad with various side dishes including the required vegetarian pastry for the veggie family. The dodgy Pavlova disappeared, as did half the brownies, but the mincemeat tart is loitering in the fridge. Tea was enjoyed by 16 of us after the others had departed. I later discovered that the youngest visitor (amongst those who missed tea) had managed to eat yet another cake under the table apparently noticed only by Eldest. Too much of her mother has clearly rubbed off as she remarked that his behaviour had been matched only by his parents’ inability to provide any form of discipline! He ate nothing but cake on the previous evening when 3 families sat down to bangers/cheese and baked potatoes with baked beans followed by fruit and had left the table before gingerbread muffins were produced. He came back for two. Eldest wondered why anyone would eat anything but cake if they were allowed to eat it without eating any of the other offerings. At least we were prepared for the non-partaking of the first course, followed by two puddings. Eldest didn’t mention the under the table incident until she caught me muttering about people who dropped cake papers on my cream carpet. But we’re all done. It won’t be our turn to host for three years (don’t ask, I can’t do the maths either). Now we look forward to dinner this evening, a different sort of entertaining. Happy New Year!
(The photo is of Eldests gift from her knitting grandmother.)