Last Sunday I drove to Canberra to look after my daughter's children, so that on Monday she could go on a full day's work trip interstate. This was between all her Christmas preparations and packing as much as possible for her move. She never stops. There is so much to be done.
The house was full of boxes, both empty and full.
My grandson gave me a big fright, as in the morning his sugars were exceedingly high. They stayed high all day. Fortunately my daughter keeps her ear and eye on her telephone, so she was able to advise on insulin dosages throughout the day. She and my son suspected he had been raiding sweet things. He said not, but I think he yielded to temptation.
It had been a very hot night, and so I went out and bought cotton sheets for the children, to replace the very hot flannelette sheets on the beds. I also did vast amounts of washing. The washing machine is a front loader, and each load took forever. In between all the washing I did some weeding, pruned the roses and raked up lots of garden rubbish. Rose pruning is not one of my skills, but these plants did need a bit of a hack.
My daughter arrived back late that evening, and next day we did lots of sorting, packing, putting odd socks together (how do so many socks come to be lost? I even found one of my own purple socks at the bottom of the washing pile), more washing, and made a few inroads into sorting and selecting toys, etc. My son and daughter, all the children and I went out and did lots of food shopping, and then ventured into the perils of Christmas shopping for the children. And I bought some new sheets for my daughter. I found another cheap book, on the young Henry VIII. (I have just finished reading it. He was not a nice man.) Suitably laden, and having chosen some wine, we all went to his house, and ate there.
Father Christmas did come during the night, and left lots of nice things for the children. Mostly complicated things like Lego, electronic devices, and mechanical things. (A lot of technological ability has evolved in the last century, in my children's generation, but it totally skipped me. It does mean your children can explain devices to you, more or less patiently and kindly.) We all returned to my son's place, and had a long Christmas lunch. Turkey, ham, baked vegetables, wine and cream sauce, the lot. But no pudding. We are not pudding people. And this year I did not make a Christmas cake. Nobody eats it except me. The children all enjoyed their new things. I am delighted with the Wollemi pine which my daughter gave me, at my request, and with the fetching purple kitchen aids from my son.
After Christmas, I kept on washing, and caught up with it all. I cleaned the kitchen and the bathroom, and helped fill boxes. We discussed getting new beds for the children, and after I had returned home my daughter went out and bought them. The awful old ones will go to the tip, with lots of other furniture company. We got through a lot, and there remains much more to be done. I hope that once the move is over, and they have settled in, they can relax a bit before school starts. And I might be able to go and see them all in their new home. I offered to go back, and do some more, but she thinks she can manage. So I will stay put.
New Year Resolutions coming up: raise own spirits. Think beautiful thoughts, and so on and so forth. Read more books, listen to more music. Work through the large number of CDs sitting there begging to be played. Crochet new cot blanket for nephew and wife, who expect a baby in a few months. Already there are trial squares laid out on the carpet.
I went up to the corner and watched the 9 pm fireworks. It is going to be a long night. People are still streaming past in large numbers, and they are already extremely noisy. Lots of swearing, and a young man urinated in the gutter across the road. Nice.
Happy New Year, to all, even to the noisy revellers. May they not get totally smashed. And may I get some sleep.