Happy New Year, lovelies!
I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year. I was so encouraged by how frequently I was blogging in December, but then I went home for Christmas and was having far too much fun to stop and blog about it!
Sorry if this is my magnum opus – I want to get all the highlights from my Christmas break down so that I’ll never forget them. This is what I got up to!
1) It’s a Holiday Who-Bilation!
So, I live 100 miles from my family home, and my sister very kindly came to collect me with my 14,000 bags, only asking that I cover petrol in return. It was such a lovely gesture that I wanted to do something special in return. I saw that lots of people (Americans, obviously) plan Grinch parties at this time of year, so we had a Grinch sleepover!
I made violently green (and violently sour and awful, as it turned out) Grinch punch, roast beast (roast chicken with goat’s cheese and rosemary) and Who-Hash (dauphinoise potatoes) for our tea. We cuddled up with The Grinch on DVD, and dressed for the occasion in Grinch pyjamas and mad hair! Had a pretty thick head the next day that had little to do with the kebab skewers I jammed into my head . . .
We drove home early the next morning, and Courtney took me to the sweetest little garden centre on the way back to look at all the Christmas scenes they set up with their decorations . . . how sweet?!
Mum made such a fuss when we got home, and my brother got home from Worcestershire a short while later. My heart was proper brimming!
2) Christmas with Dad!
Most people don’t report to have an absolute bender with their old man at Christmas-time, but Christmas with my dad and step-mum on the 22nd got a little messy, owing to us all allowing our dad to pour our drinks – oops! We had a tasty Chinese and great catch-up, and I was dead chuffed to get a voucher towards a laptop. I could achieve more on a fuckin’ calculator than my current one (honestly takes about seven minutes to load Chrome), so I can be way more efficient this year!
3) Treated by Mama!
On the 23rd, I met up with a couple of school friends for such a lovely catch-up, and then met my mum, sister Courtney and brother Dane in La Taverna in Llandudno, a gorgeous little Italian restaurant for some family time with just the four of us. I had calamari and steak risotto. Both were amazing!
4) Christmas Eve!
Regrettably, I had to go to Asda on Christmas Eve to buy stuff I should have bought days before. It was horrendously busy which left me all on edge and crap for a few hours afterwards, but my sister put on as amazing a buffet as usual, and we had a great few hours with friends over to play silly games, listen to Christmas music and enjoy great food and drinks.
We organised our family party to be a little earlier this year. Both my brother and I burn our really easily at Christmas-time; it’s tough to be consistently around people, and we felt it was better if we made it more of an afternoon thing so that there’d be less drink and we’d then get more time together. It totally worked! Everyone buggered off at 19:00, at which point we watched The Muppets Christmas Carol with a Snowball and had a little present each (mine was a yoga mat, schwing!). We were all in bed by 23:30, perfect!
5) The main event!
I actually woke up first this year! My sister warns us all that if we’re not awake by 07:01, we’ll get all of our presents thrown on the fire, but I got her up this year! Teeth brushed, slippers on and Buck’s Fizz poured, we padded into the lounge to see if he’d been! He had (I watched “him” put the bags out before we went to bed).
I’m mega defensive about Christmas present exchanges within our immediate family, and I shouldn’t be. Yes, by a lot of people’s standards, we overdo it. However, whilst I was spoiled rotten (and I was so, so lucky), we don’t indulge like this at any other time of the year, and most of our presents are smaller, thoughtful things. It took us 90 minutes to open all of our presents, ‘cuz we like to take it in turns and really take our time. I cried about four times at how lovely everything I had was – very overwhelmed!
We all showered and got into new gladrags (my amazing new Stranger Things t-shirt!) and my sister and I watched The Snowman with a Gin Clementini made by me as Mum shooed us from the kitchen and my brother had a nap.
Lunch was amazing, and it was nice to just have us four around the table where we could properly be ourselves.
I normally get a little sad on Christmas Day afternoon, but this year was great! I went for a bath and used one of the Lush bath oils I’d treated myself to, and then reconvened with my brother, my sister and her boyfriend in the lounge in my new Slytherin dressing gown for Cards Against Humanity!
6) Boxing Day
Boxing Day was really quiet for me this year. I didn’t put any make-up on, and mostly flounced about in my cosy new onesie with a Bailey’s in one hand and a glass of wine in the other after an intense leg workout. I really enjoyed watching Call the Midwife and Harry Potter films with my mum, enjoying tasty leftovers!
7) An upward battle!
As I mentioned, I worked out hard on Boxing Day morning, and didn’t eat sufficient protein to rescue myself from the excruciating leg pain I woke up to the next day. That wouldn’t have mattered if I hadn’t agreed with enthusiasm to go on a huge hike the following day. I nearly cried in pain on the way up, but for this view, it was so worth it.
It was great to spend time with so many of my friends in the fresh air, and it was great to have a change of scenery at the ruins at the top of the mountain at Dinas Bran (in Llangollen in North Wales). Izzi and I even managed to stop huffing long enough for a mountain-top selfie!
8) What? Another Christmas?
Joey wasn’t able to join me until the 29th of December in North Wales, but he was totally worth waiting for!
We exchanged presents (more on that in my next blog post!) and he was so, so good to me and he got all misty-eyed over the fact that one of his presents was a key to my house. Gooey, special shit. Mm. We went out for a meal in a local pub to celebrate being back together, and then visited one of my best friends who was visiting from Italy.
Look how gorgeous he is!
9) Happy New Year!
Once again, Raz and Izzi hosted a wicked New Year’s Eve party at their house with tasty food (including a pie that had a willy baked onto its crust), sparklers and the Joking Hazard game, which had me in tears of laughter over how sick my friends are.
We also had a ‘Secret Satan’ exchange in which we had to pick a gift for another person, but with an evil twist. I got Izzi, who loves Game of Thrones, and the Stark characters in particular. What better gift than this smashing, silly wolf shirt?! Hahaha!
There were only a few hangover casualties the next day, and I wasn’t one of them! My sister and her boyfriend picked me up early enough to take me home, and Joey met me there shortly after. We had kebabs and pizza and lots of naps and vodka – the perfect way to end the break!
My Christmas was absolutely amazing. I had such a chilled time and saw so many of the people that I love the most. We’ve already all committed to some awesome plans for 2018, so bring it on!
I hope you all had a wonderful time, and I’m looking forward to blogging more and reading all of your blogs in 2018 – Happy New Year!
Love and strength,