So today has been mental. Me and my Mum seemed to revert to traditional Christmas ways and had a thoroughly mental day, just like the good old days. I woke up with an urge to not really face the day and with no Christmas spirit at all. At first it seemed like a terrible idea but I think it did us good.

First of all was the regular, mundane stuff like hoovering and cleaning out the guinea pigs’ cage. Then I finished up my present wrapping. Then we went out to Mumbles to have a wander and pick up some last minute presents for each other. It wasn’t overly successful and there was no Christmas spirit to be seen which was a shame as it was great there last Christmas Eve.

So we decided we wouldn’t be phased and tried to figure out where to go next for some spirit. Perhaps oddly we settled on the aforementioned rental shop that I used to work at. Not that branch exactly, the other local branch where an old workmate and good friend works. He seemed to be lacking in Christmas spirit when we first got there (can’t blame him, he was in work after all!) but I think we cheered him up and he cheered us up too.

We went home after that for some lunch before quickly heading off to do more while the mood was there and the ice wasn’t too treacherous.

We visited two sets of family friends then. I don’t usually visit the first set but it was really nice to see them. Kept the spirit going although a part of me felt so very envious of their lovely family atmosphere – all the family round and all that. The second set were as stressed as anything but quickly calmed which was good.

By the time we got home from all that, it was 9pm. We still had labels to put on presents, vegetables to peel and cut, a phone call to make and maybe even some dinner.

My Mum phoned a cousin of ours. Not sure what the official term is but he’s my Dad’s cousin but really he’s as good as my Dad’s father as his real one wasn’t about (it’s a complicated story). He’s in his 80s now and was widowed a few months after my Mum was. Such a lovely man. As you’d expect, I see him as my Grandfather although I haven’t seen him in a long while. I have very fond memories of him and his wife. The problem lies in the fact that he sounds so much like my Dad. An older version of him of course but he really does. It’s tough to talk to him on the phone because of this but it also makes it all the more important. Plus he talked to me about my Dad which was lovely, but ugh, tough. It made me cry but not for the first time today.

Really must go see him soon. We’ll have to scrounge up the money somehow for the petrol/hotel/all that. He lives in Hatfield in a small bungalow so it’s not really a day trip thing sadly but we really must.

Doing the labels was simple enough work. The vegetables was hard work as I really could do with being stronger to cut bloody parsnips and huge potatoes but it’s all done now for the morning. Oh and the turkey is in the oven now too.

So I’m sitting here watching Love Actually with my Mum. It’s tough. Besides the subject matter in places (such as Liam Neeson’s story in the film, as well as now in life), it mattered a lot to my family. My Dad loved it. He wasn’t a huge rom com fan but he really liked Love Actually.

For a few years it became a tradition that we’d watch Love Actually every Christmas Eve all together. The last Christmas, we nearly didn’t as my Mum pointed out we knew the script but me and my Dad convinced her anyway. I’m glad we did.

We haven’t seen it since. Too hard to do. I decided I needed to do it this year though. It felt right. It’s made me cry twice so far and I’m only 30 minutes in. I’ll get there though and I’ll feel pleased that I managed to do it. It’s weird seeing it through different eyes, so to speak.

So yes, that’s my Christmas Eve. It probably sounds rather sombre but it’s been really quite nice actually. Just sad too in places.

Anyway, hope everyone has a fantastic Christmas 🙂

Blog a Day 358of365: Christmas Eve