All The Family Huddled Around A Glowing Laptop

The times when the kids were growing up it was a tradition to have the laptop on and the Northern Hemisphere family watch as the presents are open. A lot has changed since this photo in 2017, the kids are young adults, my Dad is in a home, the Swedish side aren't allowed to travel to Wales due to COVID, and I won't be around the kids this Christmas Day. It's not so much the change, the kids were always gonna move on and with the divorce new rituals have been created. It's more that it's happened in 3 years, 2017 seems both a long long way away (as does January, remember then?), and yet close enough to touch. Whatever your routines are be prepared to change them, but keep the rituals . 

'Tis the season to be jolly (2016 version)

(2013 version | 2005 version)

So, Christmas is coming and I'm starting to get into the spirit and I'm getting the "What We Need To Have Happen To Make It Feel Like Christmas" list circulated, verified, commented on and ratified by the occupants of chez Riversdale on Christmas Day - so far it's looking something like this


Christmas songs (not necessarily carols) / Tree / Decorations / Lights / Tinsel / Smiggle Advent calendar / Board game / Crackers ("banging, crap-joke, paper hat" sort) / Christmas candles / Sparklers / Balloons


Hanngout calls to family / SMS/IM to mates / Video taking / Picture taking

Food and Drink


Champagne with strawberries / Sparkling juice / coffee / Salmon /  Toast / strawberry jam / pancakes / maple syrup / hash browns / Shreddies /

Snacks & nibbles throughout the day

Hazelnuts / Brazil nuts / Walnuts / Pistachio nuts / Mandarins / Chocolate /  Terry's Chocolate Orange / Fruit Mince Pies / Crisps / Fruit / Wine / craft beer


Lamb / chicken / roast & boiled potatoes / carrots / peas / brussel sprouts / Kumara / corn cobs / chocolate cheesecake / brandy snaps / pavlova

Snacks for tea

Crunch bread / mayonnaise / leftover chicken / chicken nibbles / Heinz Salad Cream / farting ...