Skating into the Christmas spirit

This time last year, the tree was up, the Advent calendar had been homemade way in advance, the carols had been playing for a while, festive activities planned for each day and I was some version of Father Christmas gone bridezilla. It was all had to be merry or else – got it?!

But I am just not feeling it yet. Yesterday morning, Talitha asked for “Jingle Bells” so I put it on. Our tree is arriving today. She opened the first window of her Advent calendar yesterday. The markings of Christmas coming are there, even if part of me feels like I just want to go back to bed (preferably on my own, without any children), pull the duvet over my head and pretend it isn’t happening.

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I’m feeling a little Grinch-like partly because we overdid things this weekend. It’s so hard to get the balance right. Should you make the most of the time together and pack in lots of fun out and about or should you just spend the whole time vegging at home? This weekend, we ended up doing all the things. And that’s with me cancelling some of the things.

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Saturday started with charity shopping and a pub lunch (wonder if my mum used to buy us gifts in front of us too? Talitha didn’t notice). Then we went for a walk in Prior’s Wood with friends. We took home happy, tired girls. A friend from uni stayed over and it was lovely chatting with her into the night.

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On Sunday, Laurence and Talitha went to church while Ophelia and I stayed home because she was snuffling with a cold and I figured she should have her morning nap for once. After that it was go, go, go rushing off to the Bristol Vintage Clothing Sale. We had a quick lunch with my brother and his wife at their flat. Then it was off to The Mall at Cribbs Causeway for the weekend’s main event.

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All weekend, the thing we’d most been looking forward to was taking Talitha ice skating for the first time. I think we must have sold it really well because she wasn’t even that fussed about seeing Santa Claus. The whole time in the queue to meet him, she just wanted to know about the ice skating.

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I have to say, I’m not such a Grinch that I wasn’t affected by my three-year-old’s excitement about her first time on the ice. I do wish we’d had a quieter weekend leading up to it, but even though she was tired, she skated for almost the entire thirty-minute session. She only had a five-minute break.

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While Ophelia enjoyed chilling on my back in the sling, looking up at all the crazy lights and colours that make up the Cribbs Winter Wonderland, Talitha had her skates strapped on and just couldn’t wait to get out on the ice with her father.

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She sat on a plastic seal for a bit, which she loved because they could gather speed, but for most of it, he held her hands and gave her a go at skating herself. I think it was a much better introduction for her, heading out with a confident skater, than it would have been if she’d gone out with me, stumbling about.

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While I can’t say I’m really feeling it yet (maybe I will after our tree arrives today), I’m living with a small child who definitely is and I think her enthusiasm just might prove infectious.

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PS: We were provided with free passes to come visit The Mall at Cribbs Causeway’s Winter Wonderland