Hello, my darlings! It's the first of December. I guess you knew I couldn't stay away for the whole of my favourite month, didn't you, and here I am inspired to write to you on the very first day. Wow! So how are you all? Well and happy? We are, and I do hope you are too. It's been so long since I've written that Blogsy didn't recognise me and I had to register all over again. Now I can't find the photos that I've only just taken of our Christmas decorations to show you, so I think I'd best write now and worry about that later in case the inspiration leaves me and the post won't get written at all.
Is your tree up? Ours is, even though it's only the first day of December today. A few years back we decided that putting up the tree on a weeknight was too stressful for words, so now we do it the weekend before. Much better. We trimmed our tree on Sunday night, with much laughter, glögg and shortbread, and The Snowman on the telly. It's gotta be The Snowman while you trim the tree.
Jemimah is at rehearsals for her dance concert at the moment. In December she's almost always at dance, but she loves it, and she has good friends there, so all's good. She's 15 in February - can you believe that? Do you remember how young she was when I first started writing here? Now she's almost as tall as me. I still have a few centimetres on her, but not for very much longer, I fear. She's a lovely young lady, and I enjoy her company very much. AO10 next year. How can that be when she was only in kindergarten last week?
We started our Christmas read alouds today. I posted them on Facebook for you to see. I love doing my picture book advent countdown over there each year. I have some lovely books lined up for this year, and even have a few blog posts planned to tell you about them, so we'll see how that goes. I especially want to share my very favourite super special books, so I'll try to get that post up at the very least. I haven't started my 'book for mum' yet. I have my book club breakup next Tuesday, and I still need to read that book, so I'm trying to be good and sensible. What are you reading this December? Any ideas for me? I've picked up Jeanette Winterson's new book, Christmas Days, and it looks beautiful, filled with stories and recipes - yes, recipes - for mince pies and trifle and red cabbage and mulled wine and other perfect Christmas food. Did you know that Jeannette Winterson has a Christmas Eve ritual that includes champagne? Champagne AND smoked salmon? She even gives her favourite French champagne choices. I just knew we were kindred spirits. There are twelve stories here, so I was thinking of saving this for the 12 days of Christmas, but I'm not sure I can wait that long. Besides, I might need to try that trifle. And some champagne, of course.
We are almost halfway through our long summer holiday this week, and I don't feel organised about AO10 at all. I need to order the books at least, so that they arrive before the start of term. I've got lazy over the years. Long gone are the days when I planned years in advance. Poor child deserves better from her teacher than this. It's amazing how it all seems to fit together, though, in the end. I love the books she'll be reading next year. I hope she does too.
Okay, I'm going to stop now so I can sort out how to upload these photos and resize them so they fit between the columns. Hopefully I'll be back in a day or so with some booklists. If not, feel free to give me a nudge. It's been so nice chatting to you all. Let's just imagine for a moment that I'm standing under the mistletoe in our hallway waiting to give you a kiss.