My sister burst into the room and switched on the light at half past seven to wake me up. She didn't even have the courtesy to leave my room dark. Before you think I'm a Scrooge, I was only protesting because I hadn't been able to get to sleep until three in the morning. A particular scene in my Harry Potter story, Watching for Wolves had been bugging me, so I had to write it out. That done, I was able to fall asleep for a few hours. After my sister had barged in, I got up, closed the door, switched off my light and got back into bed. By which time I was far too awake to go back to sleep. I gave in, sat up, switched on my bedside lamp and opened my stocking presents. The rule in our house is that stocking presents may be opened when we get up, but bigger presents have to wait until Mum and Dad are downstairs. Helen encouraged them by cups of tea and coffee, respectively.
Three lingerie sets (bra/knickers), all beautiful
Tigger socks (my mother says I'm like Tigger because I bounce)
A zodiac calendar
Apple, satsuma, nuts
A lovely mug saying "I'm in my own world; it's okay, they know me here." It even has a blonde girl reading a book, and a cat in the background.
Once we were downstairs, the fun really began. The cats loved their 'mouse on a string' and immediately began to play with it. Mum loved her Sam Cooke CD (which I bought back in August); Helen loved her CD (bought at £8.99 in HMV, with student discount (that's how it should be for all Christmas presents); and Dad loved his cufflinks, which I ordered online. I thought they wouldn't get there in time, but when I came home they were waiting for me in a brown parcel. The post has been very good to me this Christmas. I unwrapped Fruits Basket Vol. 9 which I'd assumed wouldn't be available until next year (that's what the shop told Dad), and a French-English dictionary of legal terms which will be invaluable for my MA. I also got Painting Ruby Tuesday by Jane Yardley, Ghosting by Jennie Erdal, The Incredibles, Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, a lovely pink-lilac-blue striped wool scarf, In Between Dreams by Jack Johnson (CD) and Look by Beth Nielsen Chapman (CD). I also got a pair of pink fluffy slippers, which I love.
Then Dad and I went off to church, and I saw the boy I used to fancy. Not only is he still tall, he's broadened out. Ho hum. If he actually talked to me, I might start fancying him again, but what's the point? Fresh horizons and all that. Saw my friends Daniel and Sara. God, I miss hanging around with them. Anyway, we got back in time for our midday ritual of toasting (buck's fizz or champagne, depending on your taste), and then tucked into some smoked salmon and salad before the actual Christmas Lunch at two o'clock. A massive organic turkey, with roasted potatoes, steamed greens, carrots and cauliflower, followed by a homemade Christmas Pudding with homemade brandy butter. We finished the day watching the Doctor Who Christmas special on the BBC. Absolutely brilliant, and I cannot wait to see David Tennant in the new series.
Got up really early (again!) to go and see relatives on the Isle of Wight (grandparents, aunt & uncle, cousin). My aunt and uncle's house was freezing as usual (they have floorboards, no carpet). Spent most of the day talking to a young girl called Victoria. Victoria is the odd one out, because Jack (my cousin) spends most of his time with Elliot, her older brother. Talking to her was like revisiting my own childhood, but seeing it from a different point of view. It also reminded me that condescending to children is one of the worst things you can possibly do - not because I did that, but because I saw that it's such an easy reaction. Lunch was a buffet of cold meats and various snacks; Victoria went up to spend time with the other kids (fortunately), so I went and sat with the adults. The usual situation in our family of being too young for most of the party, and too old for the rest. Helen and I are always stuck in that particular limbo.
Then Dad and I went to walk Grandad's chocolate Labrador, Cocoa, and Jack's golden Labrador, Bella. Bella is kept in a cage most of the day while everyone's at work/school. We say as little as possible about this, since our united family view is that if you can't spend most of your time with a dog, you shouldn't get one. They would be much more suited to a cat but Jack wanted a dog. Bella is sweet but has little training. When she saw some other dogs in the field, she belted off across towards them. Fortunately, they were friendly. I hooked her back on the lead, although I left it long, and we made our way back to Grandad's house without any further incident. Put Bella back in her cage. When we went back to the other house, I was ready to go home, but we had to stay a bit longer. So I sat in the living room, practically ignored. Not that I minded, because I wasn't in the mood to talk to anyone. I can only make so much effort with strangers. A few hours of being polite and interested, and I'm done. That's just the way I am. I was glad to get home. It was a special day because Lydia and Emily actually phoned me of their own accord, not once but twice!
We went up to visit another aunt and uncle (on my dad's side), and our nana (Dad's mum). The north and the east of the UK has been inundated with snow, and we have received nothing. Life just isn't fair. At all. It's not like I didn't know that already, but this fact has renewed my conviction. But I love life inspite of this depressing fact.
As usual, Auntie Doreen had a feast cooked for us: slices of roast beef; boiled new potatoes; carrots and brussel sprouts; roast parsnips; gravy and redcurrant jelly and Dijon mustard. Plus salt and pepper, of course. And our choice of drink. Then we had two choices for dessert: bread-and-butter-pudding or Christmas pudding; then we could choose between cream, custard or ice-cream to go with them - that's two varieties of ice-cream. I was almost in despair, how was I going to choose. In the end, I plumped for Christmas pudding with strawberry swirl ice-cream. Then I had strawberry swirl ice-cream on its own. And then after that, while watching the live-action Jungle Book, then Stuart Little, we had biscuits and chocolates offered to us. I mean, I seriously need to go on a purge after yesterday. Vegetable soup and nothing.
When we got back home, we got our things and went straight to see The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Oh my God, how excellent was that film? I thought Lucy (Georgie Henley) was adorable, sweet without being sickening. Susan (Anna Popplewell) was very realistic as the bossy elder sister trying to be mother, and Peter (William Moseley) was also adorable. I wanted to pinch his cheeks. And Edmund, wow... he was excellent. I particularly liked the scene between him and Mr. Tumnus in the prison. Did I mention that Mr. Tumnus was good? I mean, he didn't have much to do, but he convinced me. And I choked up when they tied Aslan up and sheared his mane. And the expression in his eyes when he saw Lucy watching... *cries* They did him so well, although I still have a fondness for the BBC Aslan, because I grew up with him. I wish we could have had Susan's wonderful line about the stone giant, but oh well. My heart was pounding during the battle. I loved Edmund's moment of glory (smashing the Witch's wand, what style). My other favourite moment was the "Woah horsie, woah!" "My name is Phillip!" It's even funnier if you know that the name "Phillip" means "love of horses". XD I want to see it again. I can't wait for Prince Caspian. I forgot to mention Jim Broadbent's Professor. They nicely hinted at his previous experiences. I really hope they'll do Magician's Nephew.
Am trying to finish a chapter each of two different stories by the New Year so people will have a New Year present. Can't guarantee anything, though.
(icon by dark_branwen)