Tuesday 24 December 2013

This home, this Christmas

What makes this house, this time, home?

Having only spent a sprinkling of nights here in the past year and a bit.

No knowledge of the surrounding area, miles and miles away from anything familiar.

Of course, it is the faces I've known my whole life, the laps I will curl up in, the hands that will rest on my head.

It is sisters sitting around the table after dinner, telling stories and making mum laugh.

It's Dad talking to the dog, walking the dog, shouting at the dog

The dog collecting everyone's slippers and hiding them in her bed

It's sisters going off for runs, reading books, making plans

It's mum singing carols at the top of her lungs whilst baking

It is cups of tea, and coffee, and sherry, and wine...

Dad offering everyone the tea, the coffee, the sherry, the wine...

And mince pies, and cake, and soup, and cheese, and bread, and 'lemon freeze', and apple crumble, and food and food and food.

And in this home, more than any others, it's the things that fill the place, that have filled many different houses before:

The wooden hippo by the fireplace
The mug with pig on that's mine and the mug with the cow on that's my twin's but that Dad always thinks is mine
African wall-hangings and woven wastepaper bins
Furniture that belonged to grandparents
Framed photos of little girls becoming bigger girls, becoming students and graduates and wives

Walls full of memories, books full of shelves, sofas full of family.

Family. We make each other laugh, sigh, cry.  Astounded by the way we are all so similar and all so different at the same time.

And I'm thankful for them. And for this slice of home.

Just an excuse for a pic of the dog putting her cute face on!

Happy Christmas Eve, one and all :-)  I hope you are 'at home', wherever you are.

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