Housekeeper's DiaryNov 12, 2019
Up until mid- November I am terribly blase about Christmas, and then just like that I am a woman in a fluster. Madonna of the Carrier Bag. She who must not return home from even the most irrelevant of trips unless she is clutching something that will be wrapped ready to shove under the tree, or squirrelled away in her festive pantry: a secret basket full of delights that even he in life-saving need of a cinnamon Spekulatius would never uncover, because she is nothing if not the most covert of festive Mistresses
Last night the Christmas flurry hit me so hard I took it into my head that life would not be worth living if we could not slip between flannel sheets and so the bedroom was transformed into the cosiest of snuggly sanctuaries in the waft of a flannel tartan duvet cover and we were middle-aged enough to practically skip upstairs at early-o-clock, simply in order to drink tea by candle-light as we buried our way to cosy, sleepy hibernation. Bless our silly hearts.
So clearly you can consider me 99% done. Ye Gads, I’ve got a festive bedroom and as she who has declared herself determined to have a gentle Christmas this year, I think I might call it a day if you don’t mind awfully? Well after I’ve ordered the turkey from the farm, updated my Festive Planner, created a spectacularly Christmassy playlist, (free of festive cliches, please, thank-you, very kindly), got the boys to get really, really specific about what they want Santa to order from Amazon, worked out when various friends and family will be visiting and generally worried myself into next week, anyway.
Today then, all festive fluster aside, I have been at my desk. Writing. Working. Shivering. For the rain will not stop and though I’m sure it is not officially cold by the very judgemental thermostat’s standards, I am chilly to the bone and no amount of giant cups of tea and warm thoughts are making any difference because I do believe its all in my head.
And what else? Well now, I have had an allergic reaction to some toothpaste, have taken up dancing around my bedroom like one of Pan’s (chubby) People, and find myself wholly sick of British politics, when the drama has probably only just begun. One of my favourite mugs has gone missing, I am chopping raw garlic onto everything, and I am reading Peace, Perfect Peace and rather insist you do too, because it is so stuffed with post world war domestic detail that it is making for quite the most perfect companion on evenings like this one when Ste is working and Finn seems rather demented with the kind of teenage stress he doesn’t want to share.
So here I am now. Quite alone. I have eaten an odd little tea of sauteed mushrooms with garlic and feta on a slither of sourdough and I’m all set to make myself perfectly comfortable with many a candle lit and my laptop on my blanket covered knees to carry on piecing together the jigsaw that is always BrocanteHome. Perhaps later I will have a square of dark chocolate, or try to fathom how to make Netflix work on the conundrum that is supposed to be a smart TV. Or maybe I will sip Ovaltine in my very silly house-coat, with rose balm rubbed into my cheeks, and do nothing more than watch the fairy-lights flicker. The living room, you see, is my oyster tonight and I must not waste time examining the possibilities of time spent in my own company when I could be getting on with with wholly indulging it!
For now then. I will bid you goodnight, wishing for you too, tartan flannel sheets and nibbly, epicurean delights. Hoping that you have the bliss of silence and twinkles, know how to make your TV work so you don’t have to dither with stubborn technology and have the kind of book waiting for you that feels like quite the most perfect evening spent with lovely friends…
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