Saturday, December 23, 2017


Our Edinburgh grandchildren came for a sleepover last night before going down to Worcester to their other grandparents for Christmas. Here they are having a lovely time bursting the bubbles in bubble wrap. I love their intent concentration on this important task.

They departed this morning and have arrived safely. They've now met their newest cousin - cousins are arriving thick and fast at the moment - on their daddy's side. This baby, born at the end of November, has now supplanted Littlest Granddaughter as their youngest cousin! (though he's not Littlest Granddaughter's cousin, if you follow.) Grandson was delighted to acquire his first boy cousin.

So today we went up north to visit Son and DIL and sweet Middle Granddaughter, the unbloggable one. As you can't see here, she has huge hazely-green eyes and is very pretty and perfectly adorable. We hadn't seen her for an unusually long time (mainly because we've been up and down to London to see Littlest Granddaughter; also because of my two choirs' carol concerts) and I thought she'd be very shy of us, but in fact she wasn't. Which was lovely. We should see her again in a couple of weeks so I hope she keeps remembering us.

Here she is having a walk in the park with her parents and us. Her hat had a red bobble.

Meanwhile, Littlest Granddaughter is with her parents and Nottingham grandparents for Christmas. These grandparents are both great knitters; here she is modelling the lastest creations. Now, that's a hat.

And our house is quiet, which is how it will remain till the first wanderers return on the 30th. Mr Life, who enjoys a bit of peace, is quite happy about this. I'm ... ok. Of course the children should see their other grandparents. We'll survive. In my ideal world, all grandchildren should live round the corner from all their grandparents and should see them every day. It would be a lot easier for their parents, too, I would think. Alas, the modern world isn't arranged like that.

Pathetically, I also miss my parents, somehow especially at Christmas. Dad died 10 years ago and Mum 5 years. How they would have loved to see the little ones.

And, as I've said before, it's so strange how fast the house empties - from the days not very long ago when it bulged at Christmas with parents and aunts and uncles (actually only one uncle) and their foreign friends - now all gone - and our children - now scattered. Next year it'll be full again at Christmas, I hope, with our descendants and also my brother and his family. It's like in Philip Larkin's "An Arundel Tomb" (such a good poem) - "the endless altered people came". Life goes on. We eventually don't.

However, grandchildren are such a joy, and WhatsApp photos keep us in touch with their doings when we can't see them so it could be A LOT WORSE!

Have a happy Christmas, everyone, particularly those who make the effort to comment  - and an especial hello to Avus - lovely to hear from you again!


  1. This post really chimed with me - this is the first Christmas where I seem to be thinking as much about the people who are not going to be around the table with us on Christmas Day as about those who are. Sign of advancing age, I suspect.

  2. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Enjoy the thought that soon all will be back with you.

  3. Oh Squish! Littlest Granddaughter is a bundle of gorgeousness! We are expecting the arrival of a sister for your darling only grandchild/son (98% sure, says the Midwife!) around 12th January. We are getting excited!!

    Happy Christmas to you all.

  4. Happy Christmas Mrs and Mr Life.....I do read often but don't always comment...wishing you all the best for 2018 x

  5. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all.

  6. Wishing a joyful Christmas and a very satisfying 2018 for you and all your wonderful family.

  7. Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a fine Hogmanay!

    Littlest is very engaging.

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  9. Very happy Christmas to you all. I hope you can appreciate the peace before the grand reunions. What a happy little bundle you have in the splendid hat!

  10. I echo your feelings about how things change, and fast. I'm used to a quiet house, but it was wonderful to have my two girls(and one boyfriend) here for the holiday. They haven't always been able to be with me due to living abroad.

  11. It's a merry go round here too - the family is gradually ebbing away and soon it will be just the two of us again. But - there's another one in the waiting room. You heard it here first.

  12. Lovely to read about your Christmas and the comings and goings of your grandchildren.

    You are not alone in missing long gone parents at Christmas. If, as Larkin says " All that survives of us is love", then that love seems to stay around and be passed on doesn`t it? Long may that be true.x