Oh my gosh, I am cream-crackered!  After weeks of planning, grocery shopping, making endless lists, buying presents, wrapping presents, writing cards, delivering cards and presents, socialising, making crafty bits and bobs, driving endlessly up and down motorways, buying some more, and queue after queue after queue, Christmas is finally on the horizon.  I have bought everything needed now, bar the big fresh food shop, I have wrapped some of it, I have planned all of it, and come this weekend we will be shutting up shop and taking a well-earned rest, dear reader.  What a crazy time it is.  For mothers anyway, whereas Steve has one person to buy for (me) and hasn't even managed that yet!  Grr.

We have 'done' Butlins and Peppa Pig World this week (photo posts to follow); we still have some crafts to make and some baking to do; we still have presents to wrap; but Father Christmas will manage to supply all that is most fervently required by the smalls, food will be plentiful, and fun will be too, we hope.  Steve has to work Christmas Day and Boxing Day this year, so we have decided to do the major food part on Christmas Eve, then just have a running buffet on Christmas Day itself, a much more relaxed solution hopefully!  Today I managed to persuade my mum to arrive on the morning of Christmas Eve, rather than the day before, so that gives us an extra day for preparing everything.  My hope is that we will manage a nice, grounding, connecting family day on Monday, either out or at home, before the onslaught of Christmas itself.

But alas things are not going swimmingly, just as I told you about our annoyingly kaput kettle the other day, our washing machine is now playing up too.  I have been looking at the price of new washing machines and it will probably be feasible to get one this month if it totally gives up the ghost, but whether we would be able to arrange a delivery this side of Christmas, or even New Year, is debatable.  And the laundrettes will presumably be closed for the holiday.  So think of me reader dear, exhausted, organised, hopefully all cooked and wrapped by then, but quite possibly surrounded by piles of dirty laundry.  Life, huh?  Merry Christmas!