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The 25 days of Lockdown Christmas

During the lead up to Christmas 2020 more areas were moving up into higher lockdown tiers, more shops closing, restaurants and bars definitely closed for the Christmas period.

To keep myself artistically entertained, I challenged myself to draw one christmas-themed picture per day. This turned into a 25 day Christmas Advent Calendar; The 25 days of Lockdown Christmas

No.1 The tree.

When I was about 8 I nagged & nagged for my own tree in my attic bedroom. It probably looked something like this. I nicked my mum’s best tree decs for it, of course

No. 2 Tangled (no, not the Disney movie)

How come, no matter how carefully you packed them away last time, they always come out looking like a plate of spaghetti carbonara.....aaargh!!

And then to find out, when you plug them in, they don’t bl**dy work!

No. 3 Busted Baubles


No. 4 Trimming Up

Back when the corner of every room had to have the obligatory bunch of balloons & hand made paper chains.....our cheeks ached from blowing ‘em up

No. 5 One For Ladies

What’s your favourite? My gran would kill me for missing off the Mackeson stout & QC Sherry.

No. 6 The Worst Dec - the Coat Hanger Chandelier

Health & Safety was obviously not at the forefront when we made this beauty at school. Luckily we only tried it once when we hung it from the kitchen light (without my mum knowing) & two candles fell off. We were never allowed to actually light it & it certainly never went anywhere near the front room flock wallpaper. Consigned shortly after construction to the Christmas decoration graveyard, I’m afraid.

No. 7 Lucky sixpence & a drop of brandy

No. 8 The Holly & The Ivy

Ivy’s got the holly & Holly’s got the ivy....

No. 9 The Paper Bell

Did you have the “half bell” (like us) that you pinned to the wall, or were you posh enough to have the “full bell” that you could hang up?

No. 10 Battle of the Ratings

Bond, Dr Who, Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid, Morecambe & Wise, The Sound of Music, The Wizard of Oz, Indiana Jones, Back To The Future, Wallace & Gromit, Top of The Pops Christmas had to buy both magazines to get the full itinerary & plan your viewing

No. 11 The Christmas Jumper

Hand knitted by Auntie Vera.....I’m sure my mum said not to worry, it would shrink in the wash??!!

No. 12 The Sozzled Robin

Looks like he’s been on the vino....hic

No. 13 Evening Walk

It’s a most wonderful time of the year (normally)....We love walking the dogs on these cold dark evenings, admiring everyone’s Christmas trees & lights

No. 14 Let It Snow

Putting on the Ritz with the Snazzy Snowman Snowglobe.... try saying that when you’ve had a few sherries, hic

No. 15 Henry & Daisy

Christmas time, mistletoe & ....... where’s my bone?

No. 16 The Magic Wardrobe

Forget Narnia, Mum & Dad’s wardrobe was where the real magic happened.

Who remembers scouting round the house in every room, cupboard, drawer, for hidden presents?

No. 17 Get the games out

It’ll soon be time to get the board games out. Too many to list, but my childhood favourites were Mouse Trap & the awesome & magical Magic Robot

No. 18 Don’t forget your Dad

He’ll soon be “splashing it on all over” when you’ve treated him to one of these beauties for Christmas. Whether it’s Old Spice, Hai Karate, Denim or English Leather, he (and your Mum) will love you for it.

When I was about 15 I was in a late quandray on what to buy my Dad for Chrimbo. I ended up choosing a shaving kit from Boots. My Dad had a big beard, so the kit (shaving jug, razor, shaving stick) sat unused in the bathroom for years. He never stopped ribbing me about it.

No. 19 One For The Ladies

Whether it’s Avon Calling, or that Boots Gift Set, don’t forget that special something for your Mum.

No. 20 The Miracle Fish

We all love pulling a cracker to see what mesmerising gifts are inside; the little comb, plastic paper clip, the tiniest spinning top, tape measure, whistle, bottle opener, magnifying glass, flipping frog, plastic moustache that gripped inside your nose so tight it made your eyes water, in fact too many wonderful goodies to mention.

But, if you were luckiest person at the party, as well as a sumptuous party hat & rib tickling joke worthy of any Les Dawson gig, you may get a Fortune Teller Miracle Fish. No one knew it’s mysteries but the fish could tell if you fancied the girl with pigtails that you sat next to in class, or whether you hated your gran’s fish paste & cucumber sandwiches. No one was safe.

No. 21 Selection Box

Beloved of all youngsters was the Christmas Selection Box. There wasn’t much in them I didn’t like. The best amongst us could devour two of these beauties between breakfast & Christmas dinner....I mean, it was our duty, & we wouldn’t want our Dad nicking the best items when we weren’t looking!

What was your favourite? I used to love a Bar Six.

No. 22 You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Til It’s Gone

I don’t know about you, but I didn’t think I’d miss walking round the shops, supermarkets, etc, & being inundated with the incessant Christmas music all the time. It used to drive me up the wall, but this year I found I’ve missed it like an old friend.

So, we decided to get a few of the old Christmas favourites on the turntable today; Mud, Slade, Elvis, James Brown (Funky Christmas), Wham, Sufjan, Stevie, Vince Gauraldi Trio......even that Sinatra trubite act Michael Buble had a spin....

No. 23 The Brookes Christmas card

To all our family, friends, colleagues & even the folk that we don’t know..... we sincerely hope you all have the best Christmas that you can possibly have. The world has changed over the last 12 months but here’s hoping that 2021 is a better year for us the moment even just a little bit would do.

A Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year from Terry, Jo, Henry & Daisy.

Peace & Love

No. 24 Waiting

Whatever you’re waiting for I hope you get it soon.

No. 25 Tea at Gran’s - the last one (phew)

Christmas Day is always special, but the highlight of the day (for me) was always going to our Gran's for Christmas tea. This was the time when all the aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews congregated to have a drink or two, get out the Magic Robot, play cards, and (hopefully) get a Magic Fish in a cracker.

Out came the best china and the finest foods the pantry could offer; roast (or boiled) ham, cold sliced tongue, pork pie with or without boiled egg, a selection of sandwiches (with or without crusts), pickled and silver skin onions, Gran's finest homemade cucumber and onion in vinegar, pickled beetroot, piccalilli, mustard , sausages on sticks, cheese & onions on toothpicks.

For afters we had a selection of tinned fruit (pears were my favourite) with Carnation milk. To top it all was Gran’s sherry trifle (hic) and Grandad’s lemon meringue (to die for) - he would whip the topping for what seemed hours until it stood to attention like my grandad did when the Queen’s Speech started.

Nothing was too good for us, we could eat as much as we wanted until we could hardly walk home, holding up my mum and dad after drinking too much milk stout, Babycham and Emva Cream.

We hope your Christmas was (and is) as good as you hoped for, and that 2021 will be amazing.


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