As November comes to an end, I feel it may be time to hit the shopping centres in search of perfect presents for everyone. I've left internet shopping a little too late for timely delivery, so I will inevitably have to drag the Wondertwins and beautiful Scarlett into the frantic world of last-minute shopping.
This will be an exciting Christmas for
Grace and Lily. This is the first Christmas the girls understand that a big dude dressed in red with a great fluffy white beard will visit them and leave gifts if he thinks they have been good girls. Ha! This is also the first Christmas I can effectively use Santa as a motivational carrot. I can dangle that big bad boy in front of them every time I need/want socially acceptable behaviour, particularly in public.
Grace, please stop hitting Lily. Do you want Santa's elves to see you? They'll tell Santa you're being naughty.
Lily, if you don't stop that tantrum and get up off the floor I will call Santa. Here I go. I'm doing it. I have Santa's number in my phone. Dialling him now...
A few years ago, when I told Ella that I would call Santa to dob on her for bad behaviour, she said "I know you won't call him because I looked for his number in your phone and it wasn't there." "Well, for your information, Miss Smarty-Pants," I said, "It is in there, but why would I keep it listed under 'Santa'? I've got to keep it top secret. It's the rules." BOOM. That shut her up.
I also feel a little nostalgic around Christmas time. This is a time when my mum would be busily making the Christmas pudding to be hung wrapped in it's canvas to 'set'. She would also be preparing for the massive wintery feast of roast beef, turkey, pork and crackling, and gluten-free Christmas cake - all to be served hot from the oven on what could possibly be a 30 - 40 degree Melbourne summer's day. She would do all this without air-conditioning, while everyone else sat lazily in the lounge room or played with their new toys outside. Bless her.
Now that she has passed, I have taken on the role of Christmas chef and hostess with the help of my younger sister, Debra. It was assumed when Mum died that the Christmas dinner died with her. I felt as the eldest in the family, married with kids, I should take over this annual feast. That and the fact that I am bossy and like to take charge. I actually love keeping the family's tradition of making a huge hanging pud - a recipe passed down the ranks - and stressing and sweating it out in the kitchen. It's not without it's challenges. Last year the microwave karked it and the year before that the oven did, and I spent Christmas Eve at my sister's house cooking three types of animal over 8 hours and travelled the 15 kilometres home with the most delicious smells in my car.
This year, Tim suggested I cook a turducken. It's a large turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken with stuffing in-between each bird. Sounds delish.
|Mmmm...turducken lickin' good.|