I mock my husband for his obsession with buying washing up liquid. He always panics that there won’t be enough in the house, yet, quite frankly, we have stocks enough to wash up for the next millennium.
I would never be so daft…would I? Well, yes, in fact, I would. I have discovered that my obsession is Christmas baubles. I am totally addicted to them, to the extent that a few years ago I had to have two trees to take them all. Worse still, one set is now colour coordinated with my living room and very chic, whilst the others have memories of childhood and are all colours of the rainbow, some glass, some tin and some needle felted. I love them all and could not possibly part with any. The trees, too, have to be the largest possible, almost taking the room over and requiring total reorganisation of furniture.
The magical time for me is getting my several Christmas boxes out of the loft and opening the layers of tissue paper and bubble wrap. I have a short memory, so often forget the baubles that I have. (My poor Husband has to heave more and more “Christmas” boxes up the loft year on year) Each October half term, I also buy more baubles from a lovely Cornish shop – no thought at all as to where they will go, of course. The magpie in me takes over completely and anything that sparkles goes into my shopping basket.
This year, however, I have a new problem in the mix. How will my tree(s) and baubles last with a puppy in the house? About ten years ago we had a new kitten and the tree had to be re-erected four times as it was used as a fun climbing frame by said little minx. My adventurous little pug, Mabel will, no doubt, be up the tree like a shot. Couple this also with the fun that my children had posting a video of me on social media whilst lying on my front last year under the tree, trying to put it up, holding the stalk and shouting “is it straight?” whilst they laughed and videoed me instead of actually straightening the tree.
Mabel the pug arrived a few weeks before my recent significant birthday, a total surprise from my Husband and children. I wasn’t aware that I wanted a puppy or indeed a pug, but it took one look for my heart to melt, despite the fact that the old chestnut “a puppy is for life and not just for Christmas” rings so true – it’s almost like being a new parent again. Mabel is adorable and already rules the household, so how do I juggle adorable pug and adorable baubles?
The practical voice in me says don’t have a tree or have it somewhere where Mabel can’t get to it. My heart says otherwise. What’s the point of having a tree if you can’t appreciate it? So, I choose both. Bring on the chaos and bring on the baubles. If the tree falls over, then it will provide the children with more fodder and footage for a social media laugh at my expense. Imagine though, if they sold footage to “You’ve been Framed” just how many more baubles or bottles of washing up liquid would that buy us!
Fiona Kellow is a working mum of two. When she isn’t running around after her family, she is a Partner at Thrings Solicitors, specialising in Family Law.