Friday, December 22, 2006

'Twas the night before Christmas . . .

I know it's only the 22nd but my family's having Christmas Eve tonight in Saskatoon. And I'm in Belfast. Take a moment to boo hoo on my behalf, if you please. Christmas Eve is really the 'main event' in my house when it comes to Christmas. My dad's Norwegian background meant that we always open all gifts save our stockings on the 24th (and lately due wide spread reticence to rise early on Christmas morn has meant that even the stocking stuffers get cracked the night before!) It's a great night - a good meal, usually a candlelight church service and then everyone chilling out by the tree in the living room - a reading of the Christmas story precedes opening pressies which is usually followed by playing with presents and eating DQ ice cream cake. General silliness usually segues into out and out hilarity. I like that.

On a side note, my family's celebrating tonight because both my sis and Dad have picked up the big money shifts which mean working Christmas Eve and Day (Ninners in the army and my Dad as a newly recruited jail guard but that's a whole other story!) Also, tomorrow the Brot-iason crew are headed down south to Ruth's farm for her family's festivities. So when it comes to opening presents, there's no time like the present! :)

Ahem. But back to my 'I won't be home for Christmas rant' - this is my fifth (count them!!) fifth Christmas away from home. My first was during my university exchange year when I met Stu and all this away from home Christmas nonsense officially started! The past four we have been here in the UK with three here in Belfast and one in Scotland. I have to admit that the St Andrews year included my parents and the Ninnygoat but still, nothing replaces a Saskatoon Christmas and in my opinion it's high time . . .

This rant must include the corollory but not insignificant comment that I have always enjoyed very lovely Christmas times with the Noble clan - these times have been very chilled, warm, fun and filled with delightful food of course. Nonetheless, indulge me on this rant for a few more seconds, if you will . . . few things 'wind me up' more than hearing friends/colleagues debate ad nauseum about who's family to spend Christmas with - the husband's or wife's? When the two families live in the same village I've endured pontification about whether they should they go to one in the morning and one in the afternoon and who will be offended about which decision? Yawn. I happen to think that such debates in my melancholy company are insensitive. Stu says I'm being overly sensitive (moi?!) Let's just say we're all entitled to our opinions (fortunately I just happen to have a whole website devoted to the expression of mine!!)

But, no matter how lovely my Irish Christmas experiences (and, like I said, they are very lovely) every year without fail the long-suffering Stu is subjected to a fair measure of homesickness from yours truly. Today I indignantly pointed out that Stu has only ever spent two Christmases away from home . . . not that we're counting. But we are.

Ah well, all this to say that big travel plans are afoot for Advent 2007. For now, it's mulled wine, mince pies, Christmas crackers and paper crowns all the way. Cheers Big Ears to the B family on 14th! We miss you. Have fun tonight xox


Anonymous said...

We missed you tonight. Thank you for the lovely slippers. Nancy and I were wearing them in style! Pics to follow, courtesy of NJB. Merry Christmas and we will talk soon.

Anonymous said...

I am in jail. This is my third 12 hour shift. Enjoy your writing. Love Bruce

Nancy Jean said...

jkb - i love the booties - thank you!
we missed you and stubird! even had holly come for a visit in the evening...and i got myself a nano!
look forward to Advent 2007!
open our pressies on xmas eve :)
xoxo nin

Anonymous said...

Julie - my eyes are moist as I write this. You life is like a soap-opera. You are far from your family at this time of good will while Bruce is in jail (a penpal I assume - do they have computers in prison?) and your sister has put her booties on and run off with the monkies. What's next? Keep paddlin.

Festive cheer be upon you,

Yours -

Mr M Dancer esq

Julie said...

hi ruth and ninny
glad the booties fit! hope that they keep you warm and cosy this Christmas!
miss you both -
j xox :)

Julie said...

p.s. ninny - enjoy the nano - they are the bomb - mine is green. i think the blue is very cool too :)

Julie said...

Congrats on your first comment :) Thanks for visiting the blog! So sorry that you are working your very long shifts in the slammer. Hope all goes well and quickly - talk to you soon!
Miss you lots
julie xox

Julie said...

Dear Morris Dancer
Empathy is a lovely quality in a blog reader.

Joyce said...


I am learning how to do this with coaching from my guru. Enjoyed your blog and the comments there in.

Joyce in the OC

Julie said...

Hi Joyce in the OC!
How great to hear from you!! Thanks for visiting the blog! Hope you and Erin have enjoyed a sunny Christmas in Newport!
Julianne :)