Sorry about yesterday but I got a bit behind myself and stuck into the early processes of de-decoration on Twelfth Night.
No matter how bad a time it is, and the last two Christmases have not actually been a ball of fun, I find the Yuletide season to be a special time, especially when it comes to decorations, parties and presents.
This year there were decorations and presents but definitely no parties.
Normally I put the decorations up in the middle of December. Last year I decided to do it on 1 December just to cheer things up a bit. Even then there were not as many as usual.
The Christmas tree was new.
When I still lived at home we had a real tree, as far as I remember, but over the years since then we gradually moved to an artificial one and in the late 1980s we got a fantastic tree over six foot tall and reduced to half-price.
Since then we have moved house a number of times and always put that tree up every year even if it was a little bit big for some of the living rooms.
Just over a year ago, however, we found the old tree was getting a bit tired and its branches were getting loose and droopy.
The new one is just five foot and sits nicely on the old mariner’s chest (one of the few relics I have which once belonged to my great-great grandfather) in our front room. The point is it does not need as many lights and decorations as we had in the past.
The trouble is I hate throwing things out which means the old tree is still up in the loft and we have more decorations than we really need.
This year I’m biting the bullet and the first thing to go is Christmas lights.
For one reason or another I tend to buy new lights every few years. Sometimes because I like what I see and sometimes because old ones stop working. The trouble is I kept hanging on to the old ones in the belief I could fix them
This year it looks as though four sets of old lights are going in the bin – well I can’t throw all of them out, I might be able to get some working again even if I have no room to put them up.
Maybe next year I can throw more away. I just have to make sure I don’t get tempted to buy any new ones.