Christmas time has always had a special place in my heart. Back when I was kid and realised there was no Santa Claus really but still it was nice to lie still in bed on Christmas Eve and imagine the sleigh bells and the Ho Ho Hos ...
And as I got older and lived away from home when I started working, present shopping, last minute lunches with church friends before we all headed home to our small towns added to the happy feelings of the season.
Although the last few years have been somewhat marred by the disintegration of my marriage, I've tried to recreate in my mind the same festive feelings I had as a child. Hoping to share and create images for my daughters. Poor things have not really had very joyous Christmases but with each year, we are trying to make them memorable for them.
After nearly 20 odd years my brother, sister, my daughters and I attended Christmas service on the 24th in our church in Brickfields. We 3 walked in together and crossing that threshold into the church compound just brought back so many memories for each of us. It has been a long time since we 3 siblings went together and it being Christmas time made it even more special for us. I will always cherish this Christmas and give thanks to God for prayers answered.
We nearly might not have celebrated Christmas this year as 2 weeks before dad had to undergo surgery and amputate 2 toes - being diabetic and a stubborn one at that since his stroke, he'd gotten a wound which turned gangrene despite best efforts to keep it clean. 9 days of hospital shuttling with mom and brother taking turns to watch over dad, me shuttling between hospital and home to keep kids and maid in order. Dad being discharged with a clean bill on the wound was good news and Christmas looked even brighter.
This Christmas, we decided to keep it family - being a Friday and a vege day in my house. Mom cooked some simple dishes and we were all at home. Sister and bro-inlaw had arrived, so it was a full house. There was a BBQ planned for the 26th and each of us had our friends over.
As usual Christmas at the Georges is something that brings people from all walks of life and ages together for a good time of celebration of food, company and leaving troubles behind, even if we have to pick them up the next day ... but for that evening it was magical in my eyes.
The group was smaller than in the past years, but I am sure this will always tip on either side of the scale. We've had 200+ ppl at the same time in 2005 and this year we had just under 40 but all the same we shared in friendships and good cheer.
The BBQ ended Sunday morning when the last of guests left about 7am and it was a slow day to recuperate. We missed some others who were not able to make it or present but they remain in our hearts always.
I have to say after a really trying frustrating year, I thoroughly enjoyed Christmas 2009. It was in many ways a Christmas I find hard to describe with words. The usual George family dramas, stress and outbursts took place. And yet this is what I suppose makes it so much more special, when the extended family and friends arrive, we know how to give everyone a good time and it amazes me how so many look forward to begin their annual winding down with a Georges Christmas do ... I so look forward to opening my home to many many more such Christmases.
We might not have jack frost nipping at our noses, and no Frosty the snowman or chestnuts roasting on an open fire ... not even a blue White Christmas, but I feel just perfectly happy to be surrounded by those I love most dearly in my life and to know so many others love me too with all my spots and faults.
Blessed Christmas everyone ... isn't it just a simply special time of the year?