Christmas magic! (Blogmas #8)

They say that Christmas is for the children and in some ways I am inclined to agree. The magic and wonder associated with the holiday seems more natural to the children than it is for the adults and despite the misgivings (because adulting is ghetto), I think that is a good thing. Children should be allowed to get caught up in the meaning, the traditions and the splendour. This world is too much of a harsh place.

When I was a smallie there were certain things about Christmas that I loved and the memory of which still brings me comfort today. The fact that a sight, sound, smell or taste can transport me to the past quick sharp is a thing of magic itself.

Spellbinding…

The smell of any kind of Trini Christmas food. I have no idea if my serotonin or endorphins (or both) are released, but the smell of sorrel boiling, ham or black cake baking puts me in a zone, even in a random day in June. This was considered to be feast food, fun and special and even at a young age I understood and appreciated that food is indeed life.

I loved the frenzy of cleaning and besides my mom I may have been the only one at home who understood the divine nature of this (sorry sis). There was something about newness and freshness and the place ‘feeling light’ and decorated, that sparked a happy feeling as a child. Back in the day the whole house was carpeted so the smell of a vacuumed and washed carpet was pure good vibes.

She knows…

To this day I feel the same but my gremlinz don’t let me enjoy it for long.🙄😒

This next one is gonna sound weird but as a child I loved the Christmas grocery run. This was like a field trip and the excitement levels were usually very high. I knew on that particular grocery trip we would get the high priced snacks that didn’t usually appear in our lunch kits. Apples and grapes were a rare seasonal thing and again….the food anticipation……not to mention that we would also get fast food afterwards which back in the 80s was also a seasonal thing.

I loved staying up late on Christmas Eve and I alluded to this previously:

For me, when I was a child my father used to invite a parang* band over to celebrate his birthday which was Christmas Eve with the festivities leading into Christmas Day. I remember my sister and I used to force ourselves to stay up for that excitement (ranked higher than waiting up for Santa Claus) because the merriment, music, eating and drinking was something that didn’t happen on that scale during the year.

https://trinimomindmiddle.com/2019/12/21/a-holiday-shift-in-focus/

It was something magical being up late up to midnight and thereafter, serenading with parang music, marvelling at the adults merrymaking and then being run to bed…not to mention waking up groggy and excited hours later seeing the place spic and ready for Christmas Day action (my mother was a real G, still is…)

Add to this list school Christmas parties and concerts, music and lights and it is clear that the magic was most present as a child. As an adult? Not as much but I always rely on my memories and the creation of new ones with my gremlinz, some of which you can find in my Instagram Vlogmas 2021 series finale, check it out here!

What about you? Did you experience Christmas holiday magic as a child? What was it like? I’d love to know in the comments!

Bless

TMIDM

Four Christmas anti-Traditions (Blogmas #7)

Mawnin mawnin!

T’is the season for traditions and if it is one thing that Trinbagonians have is a world of traditions , some of which make sense and some we just do for doing it sake. I usually go with the grain but here are four ways that I just do my own thing with remarkably no fatalities as a result.

I didn’t make dat.
  1. I don’t make pastelles.
    • It is not that I can’t make them, I just prefer to not have the added wuk in creating them and pastelle creation is indeed VERY labour intensive. Thankfully I know some fine, talented folks who take on this labour gladly and outside of my mother, I will happily pay them their just due of a dozen or so in return. If push comes to shove I will make a pastelle pie if necessary, same great taste just in casserole form.
  2. I don’t always use fresh sorrel.
    • Now before you nail me to a cross and I know allyuh like to argue, see above comment re the labour intensity. Yes, sitting down peeling a whole bag (two bags…five bags…) ah sorrel is a fun, traditional activity inclusive of the hand scratching, but I see nothing wrong in the dried sorrel which comes handy in a pack that you just boil and add your flavours and taste. The smell is the same and if you know how to do it right, the colour and the taste are also the same. I know the sorrel purists will come for me but ah love ah ease up eh so ease meh up.
  3. I don’t wait until Christmas Eve to put away.
    • For those who might not know, the term ‘put away’ in Trinidad means to clean out your home, change all your linens and to decorate. It is Trinidad lore that the massive frenzy must take place inclusive of baking bread, black cake, ham and boiling sorrel, while new curtains go up all day Christmas Eve into the wee hours so you wake up to everything fresh and sparkling. However, no one makes mention of how tired your ass will be on Christmas morning so no gracias. In my house, every room gets a day in the lead up and if I have some renovations to do, even before. I must have about three or four days before Christmas to cock up meh foot and while we are on the topic of new curtains…
  4. I don’t buy curtains every year.
    • Some people do almost religiously because they have to change the look and colour scheme of the rooms, which is cool but what I do is rotate. So living room curtains will rotate to my room, I switch up the gremlinz room curtains as well and then afterwards mix and match and rotate again. I don’t have curtain colours that are too outrageous or non-traditional that will clash and if there is no need (or no extra funds) I am not going out of my way to buy any. Who watching your curtains anyway? Not to mention wherrrrre am I putting all these curtains? I hate clutter.
…but I do love me some sorrel from Egypt though (please don’t come for me)

The way I see it, you set your own traditions according to what works for you and for your family as well, despite whoever you think might be rolling in their grave and I’m a ‘do whatever works for you’ person. What about you? Are there any Christmas traditions where you are that you don’t take too seriously? Let me know below!

Bless

TMIDM

Be an earlybird! (A Christmas throwback..) (Blogmas#4)

I wanted to write a post about how I usually attack my Christmas preparations and then I realized I wrote one already, click to read here first.

Not much has changed, I am still an earlybird, or try to be, but I am not as MANIC as I used to be about getting everything perfect before December 25th. I don’t insist that every single dust particle be removed from my house and I have no energy for anything beyond what I am willing to do for the sake of my sanity on a particular day. I am definitely not wasting my days, working hard and not enjoying my holiday break as I go along.

So much meaning…

So I will do my thing, catch my worm and savour to the last bite with my family until I have to head back out in the fields again. A damn good idea if I don’t say so mehself.

Bless

TMIDM