Friday, 11 January 2013

Christmas Present

A little late in the day but this one is for FC :)

You know, It really does seem like THE most appropriate title for this post.

This Christmas it would have been easy to believe that some benevolent rosy cheeked old gent scrolling though his well thumbed note book had, coming across my name, paused and, tapping his pen gently against his pursed lips smiled before putting a large tick in the 'has been good this year' box.

Technically I probably haven't actually been good all year but maybe he thought I deserved a break and so would overlook one or two minor indiscretions.

Of course I have some stories to tell and yes, Christmas didn't get in the way of those damned 'things' happening and I will tell you about them in another blog post I promise but this one I'm playing straight because it truly was a magical time.

Christmas Eve was spent in the company of friends.  Groups gathered and mingled, came together and drifted apart on a cloud of laughter and bonhomie (ok, technically what I'm describing was a pub crawl but the best of it's kind ;).  I arrived late and left early which seemed just the right amount of time.

Christmas Day morning found me sitting in the soft glow from the Christmas tree and the myriad of fairy lights strung across the fireplace, around windows and doorways savouring the peace and the stillness.  Sending text and emails winging their way around the country and across continents wishing friends and family a very merry Christmas.  So different to the days of Christmas past when we would all have been gathered together but somehow still feeling the closeness to those who matter most to me in this world.

After the chaos of present opening, the traditional uncorking of the Bucks Fizz (where I sit on the decking in the garden, bottle clenched between my thighs, eyes closed, absolutely bloody terrified trying to ease the cork out) and a leisurely breakfast of scrambled eggs it was time to dress for lunch.

For once I wasn't cooking this year.  Some how the previous days had seemed a little empty without the shopping and preparation.  I'd felt a little lost and as though I'd 'forgotten' something.  I love to cook and most of all, I love to cook for people but I have to admit, the novelty of not running around, having time to just sit and enjoy the day with no pressure was lovely just this once.

After an amazing lunch where I ate far too much and yet more present opening we talked idly about going for a walk (I guess that's kind of a tradition too - one day I might actually do it;) we popped round to see friends where we were offered the most amazing homemade chocolate cheesecake ...  well, it would have been rude to refuse wouldn't it?

Feeling just slightly queasy we gathered up our loot and came home to watch a DVD (I can't actually remember what).  It was a pretty magical day.

Boxing Day was spent at the beach (yes, I know, I'm obsessed ;).  I've posted so many photos of Lyme Regis in the past that I have nothing new to share with you so instead you get a photo of my arse (complete with bad hair (it was a little windy ok ;)  and, one of my favourite presents, a woolly red scarf with pompoms!! :):

Photo: A gratuitous Boxing day arse shot from a slightly breezy Lyme Regis

After all the excess of the previous day (ok, WEEK!) it was great to get out and breath in great lungfuls of sea air.  We walked along the seafront, wandered around the art gallery's and sat overlooking the beach drinking coffee.
Another shot where you can appreciate the awesomeness of my scarf without being offended by my face ;)
Photo: I think this captures my best side ....
And then back into town to catch up with friends and see one of my favourite local bands.

The week between Christmas and New Year was spent catching up with family and friends including my lovely Mr O who I haven't seen for the LONGEST time!
One of the things I love most about him is that everything is an occasion, a celebration and just SO much damned fun!
A perfect excuse to wear a dress that (although I'm pretty sure he'd never admit it) I think SD considers a little .... tarty!  Luckily Mr O loves all things tarty which is great because I've been dying to wear it (I would show you a photo so you could make you own mind up but sadly I don't have one - suffice to say it is very short and leave little to the imagination ... hmm, SD COULD be right ;).
The evening started with far too much pink champagne and kind of went on from there.  Huge quantities of Mexican food - we have THE best Mexican I've ever found just around the corner from me, how lucky am I???  Of course we drank Sangria which, in my opinion comes a close second to Pimms in the fruit salad with benefits stakes.  It was a magical evening.  If you're ever in the area you really do need to visit the Mexican, the food is great, it's tiny and intimate and the staff are the stuff of legends!
On New Years Eve we went to Exeter shopping taking Miss Mac and her friend. Letting them lose in the High St with a handful of New Look vouchers and some cash we slinked off down to the old town to The Real McCoy, surely the best shop in the country? 

If I'd had £150 to spare I could have bought an original pair of 1960's petrol washed Levis, as I didn't I settled for a great Bench hat that I may just wear all summer. 

The real McCoy isn't just a shop, it's an experience.  You can drink coffee in the retro cafe whilst watching silent movies.  You can buy original 60's clothing, second hand vintage wedding dresses, fancy dress, new clothes, just about anything and everything!  The old end of Exeter is bursting with small independent shops and I've got to admit I was VERY tempted by a Goth wedding dress which would have looked amazing on.  I always felt I should really have been a Goth, love their clothes and make up but then, I was also seduced by the punks that used to hang around the High St in the early 80's and I much preferred their music.
New Years Eve was PARTY TIME!!!  It was also fancy dress ...  even worse, themed fancy dress :(.  I struggle a little with fancy dress.  I like the dressing up bit just not the fancy bit and the theme for this party was onsies ...
I wasn't particularly keen to spend £25 on an all in one giraffe outfit that I didn't want and would never wear again so SD suggested I borrow a pair of his overalls ....
I think he may have misunderstood the 'I like dressing up' bit just a little ....
Gamely entering into the spirit of things I agreed to wear a tank suit, DM's and aviators and go for the 'Sisters of Mercy meets military' look and here I am with Miss Mac in a rare photo of us together (having bribed her with yet more Bucks Fizz):
Photo: Yes, I did have to bribe her with Bucks Fizz before she would have her photo taken with me ...
Later that evening things degenerated somewhat ....
Photo: Yes it did seem like a good idea last night and no, I dont appear to be able to walk this morning ...
And then ...
Photo: And this is the point where I failed ....
New Years Day was THE most beautiful day here in the UK so I went to the .... ummm, beach ;)
West Bay - how gorgeous is this???
Photo: A perfect way to start the New Year at West Bay and Lyme Regis.
 I wore my new hat (not the greatest pic ;)

 I had the most amazing brunch looking out over this view.

That's pretty much it I think.  No doubt there was other stuff that I've missed out and of course I have still to tell you about those 'things that happened which I will in another post.

So yes, Christmas this year really was a gift and I feel incredibly lucky to have so many good things and people in my life :)).


Feisty Cat said...

I wish I had been there! I love sangria and Mexican food and tarty dresses.

What a lovely post.


Kelloggs Ville said...

blimey, thats a full on share after the last post! nice way to spend a festive tide.

I have a question: "bottle clenched between my thighs, eyes closed, absolutely bloody terrified trying to ease the cork out" : What with my love? What with?! The rest of us use our hands - it's much less stressfull.

Sarah said...

Me too FC :) and I'd love to share a jug of Sangria and a Chimichanga with you sometime x

Haha, tell me about it K - I decided fuck it - I will think a little more before writing about others but it's all of nothing where I'm concerned (which is a real bugger because I have the best story about someone else which I'm dying to tell you about!).

I DID use my hands lol but those buggers require thighs of steel too sometimes ;) x