I was looking through a local garden centre’s Christmas catalogue that dropped through my door over the weekend. To be fair the garden centre is pretty good and rather successful. We do travel the 9 miles there to get plants and other garden accoutrements at least once or twice during the summer months quite simply because it has the widest variety and selection of plants. Since we came out of lockdown, I suppose since more people are ‘staycationing,’ it has started to stock a wide variety of non-garden related ‘stuff.’ I use the word stuff advisedly because most of it is trivial, plastic and judging from the overflow car park had arrived in containers from China. When I say trivial it is the kind of stuff that you would buy, not because you need it but because it is presented to you when you go shopping for plants. Now comes the argument bit...
People can be funny, not humorous you understand but difficult to explain. I was in a queue for the till at said garden centre when a couple converged having split up to do their shopping and then come together at the checkout. A row ensued in front of 50 or more shoppers and till assistants concerning which items in the trolleys were going to be bought and which items were going to be dumped at the checkout. It was quite a scene; they were really going for it and the argument centred around stuff! To my eyes there was not one single item that would merit a purchase.
Back to the Christmas catalogue, the latest thing is the ‘Feal-real’ Christmas Tree. Whilst they do stock real Christmas Trees it was the number of artificial trees on offer that caught my eye. Well, I don’t know about you but any suggestion of anything other than a real tree would cause a riot in my house. According to my partner she has friends who have this barney with their other halves every year! The prim, proper and house-proud hate the needles that drop on the carpets, whereas the partner loves the look, feel and smell of a real tree....and in some small way the need to nurture and water it during the festivities. I am not sure if the choice of Christmas Trees is a man or a woman thing, in my house at least it is a family endeavour.
There are lots of other things that can cause an argument at Christmas. Who is going to make the cake or prepare the turkey, decorate the tree, wash up the things that don’t go in the dishwasher, clear up the wrapping paper after present opening. The list is endless. So, I hear you ask what would I advise? Hmm, well I have had a bit of experience so here goes:
- I am good at some things and other members of the family are too, but they are different. I am not a good cake maker, but I am good at applying the marzipan and the icing. So, we split the cake making task.
- I do the tree installation but I don’t decorate it ....but I do the lights as I am the tallest.
- I do all the washing up and rubbish disposal.
- I don’t prepare the turkey but I do deal with the carcass
So there you have it in a nutshell, share, get everybody involved and spread the load, that way no one has to do too much, there is plenty of time for everyone to relax and enjoy the festivities. Many hands make light work!
PS: Ooh one last thing. In the Garden Centre’s Christmas catalogue, I also spotted a ‘Pork Crackling Advent Calendar!’ Don’t get me started!