So, Christmas came & Christmas went (well, it has nearly gone – all evidence in this house will soon be hidden).
Bonzo did quite well. The last few days of school were surprisingly hitch free. Gran & Gramps came to see him in his carol concert and much to my mother’s annoyance Bonzo didn’t notice they were there. The family weekend went really well. Pickle was unwell, so Uncle & Pop joined us for Christmas lunch and Bonzo and Pop were beautifully behaved, and thoroughly enjoyed the day.
We then dashed down to do a whistle stop tour of present dropping & collecting and party attending & godparent visiting – and again, Bonzo was great.
Christmas Eve, Pickle & Pop came for the afternoon, and had a lovely time playing and watching some Christmas
crap tv, and then stocking out, and off to bed he went.
So, for the first time, Bonzo knew it was Christmas Eve – and knew that meant stockings would be filled. And that meant he didn’t go to sleep. Nothing unusual here for a 5 year old boy, only he wasn’t going to sleep so that he was ready to run if Father Christmas came in his room. We had obviously left the stocking downstairs, but he was still more worried than excited – but of course wanted the stocking somewhere, he wasn’t so frightened that he’d forfeit presents!
Christmas day dawned, and (eventually) ‘Mr I am in a Complete Grump’ got up. He was in a foul mood. I kept my ‘nice happy everything is lovely voice on, and suggested opening his presents (yes, he is strange, he hadn’t bothered to look!). In this house Father Christmas just fills stockings with little things – satsuma, chocolate coins, flannel etc etc – big presents come later.
I think we had made it through a handful of small packages before the first explosion. So, stocking opening was alternated with ‘strong sitting’ – as in fact was the rest of the morning. Few presents, tantrum, few presents, kick a chair, few presents, scream at Mummy – all good wholesome family fun.
I then gave up and put him to bed. Unfortunately I couldn’t open the vodka as I had to be in charge of a emotionally wobbly boy and a car.
The afternoon was calmer and we headed off to Great Aunt Hilarious’s for Christmas dinner. Big cousins provided lots of love, the right amount of attention, and a far superior knowledge of playmobil to me – all went well.
Then Boxing Day we walked & walked. And walked some more. He was lovely – we had another ‘special dinner’, just me and him and had time to explore the Lego which had amassed the day before.
Then it was time to flee the country, or at least, this part of it, and head to old friends in NI. These old friends are a big family (big in number, small in size!), all children now grown-up and Bonzo loved it. He did lots of stropping about, perfected his sulking and was for the first few days hyper. But he had great fun. The big people (range in age between 19 & 30) entertained him, drew with him, bumped downstairs with him, watched tv with him, read stories to him, played hide&seek, and generally did as they were ordered to do!
Most of all he loved mealtimes. The joy on his face when he was telling jokes (attempting to tell jokes) to a full table of diners (average 10 of us) was lovely to see. He loved the teasing, the general noise, the chaos that large families bring to mealtimes. I loved it too – very much how mealtimes were for me as a child.
There was one large piece of trauma, but I’ll blog that seperately when I see what happens in the next few days.
The main thing that is noticeable this past fortnight, apart from Christmas day, we have had no major temper tantrums. No meltdowns with kicky feet and punchy hands. Funny – what a coincidence, we haven’t had school either. I highly suspect I have 4 flingy limb free days left.
Here is to (for Bonzo) a happier, healthier and more emotionally balanced 2013!