So how was it for you?

It’s January the 2nd and I’m back at my desk. The only sound is of the birds singing outside. Dawn’s just breaking (dawn’s pretty late in my part of the UK at this time of the year – 8am) and the sky is orange and purple. My lovely Mac computer has just been upgraded and I’m content.

Why? It’s because I don’t like Christmas.

Sorry! I know it’s not a popular point of view but I’m one of Santa’s little elves who make Christmas possible for everybody else. I shop for the presents and wrap them, I shop for the food and cook (and cook and cook) it. Even when someone else is the hostess my conscience won’t allow them to shoulder the burden alone, so I spend the day in their kitchen instead of mine!

Puppy-in-law in a chilled moment on New Year's Eve

Puppy-in-law in a chilled moment on New Year’s Eve

But I’m not completely ‘bah, humbug!’ I love to see my family and it was great that my son, his girlfriend and their puppy were able to come for three weeks ‘home town time’. I enjoyed chats with my brothers and their families, who I don’t get to see all the time. I went to see ‘The Hobbit’, which was absolutely fantastic and I enjoyed every second. I managed to squeeze in two Zumba classes and attendant cuppas with my gym bunny buddies, I found two days where I snatched a few hours to write, I had a day where I refused to cook and sat by the fire reading whilst the rain poured down outside. I enjoyed the several Christmas lunches and dinners I got to earlier in December (ie cooked by restaurant personnel).

I had a pretty chilled New Year and now we’ve crossed that sacred date line I am very happy to be back at my lovely Mac without having totally lost the plot (ho ho) of my book thanks to those two days I managed to write. I’ll be back at yoga at lunchtime, on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire with the lovely Sue Dougan tomorrow and meeting a close protection officer for research purposes on Monday. I’m book in for Zumba on Thursday, Friday and Tuesday. Blissful sighhhhhhhhh …. I feel I’m in my own skin again.

Is it just me? Am I just a curmudgeonly moany guts? Did you all have a fantastic time and you’re sorry to get back to normal life? I really really hope so.

And I hope that 2013 is a healthy, happy and prosperous year for you. x

PS Dream a Little Dream came out in Australia yesterday. I’m a bit jealous it’s over there without me because I’ve always wanted to go. Maybe that’s how I ought to spend next Christmas …


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26 responses to “So how was it for you?

  1. Hi Sue
    I confess I was in a hurry for normality to return. Haven’t got back to writing, with the children at home, but my mind is whirring away.
    I’m relieved the new year has started. I have good things to which to look forward.
    Happy writing and dancing.
    Laura x


  2. Have to admit I am a curmudgeonly moany guts about Christmas too. I like it and, invariable, the day goes well but I don’t love it. I do love seeing my children happy and catching up with my family who all live away but on the whole I’m quite glad when it’s all over. Just for the record, I’m the same about children’s birthday parties too. Does that put me in the super league for CMG?


  3. You are not alone, Sue. Thanks for sharing your blog with us all. I find the festive season a toughie, lots of pressure from society to either make it perfect or give everything you have to those less fortunate. Therefore, I tend to turn inwards and by that point, life has become even harder. But now we are in 2013. It is a fresh start. And while we have the baggage of previous years in tow, we can-at least emotionally-wipe the slate clean. Happy 2013 Sue and please keep bringing us that fantastic imagination of yours. Sjb x


  4. I rebelled this year. Instead of doing the big traditional dinner for family and holding the family get togethers we went away on our own. It was fun, but I sort of missed all the baking and having a crowded house so I expect things will go back to normal this year.


  5. Hi Sue, I went for a swim this morning and it was so quiet, almost like my own private pool. I like to get back to normal as well. Especially food wise.


  6. Hi Sue, well like you I’m ambivalent about Christmas and pretty much for the same reasons as you! It all tends to fall on the one person…….however it still remains my favourite holiday of the year. I think I’ll always love Christmas, but hate all the extra work load!!!! Looks like we can’t have our cake and eat it too!! Happy New Year xxx


  7. Penny

    Could not agree more about being happy to be back. Several solid days of Christmas rain can send you Stir Crazy. ‘Nuff said, perhaps….


  8. Karen B

    I love Christmas, I have four young children so its impossible not to get swept away by it all. Its just so exhausting though and I do breathe a sigh of relief when all the decorations get packed away and its over for another year. I live in Australia and my children finished school at the beginning of December and won’t return to school until the end of January so its a very long couple of months in this very hot weather. We’d love to have you on our side of the globe sometime Sue, I do love living where I do. One of the things I really loved about your book All That Mullarkey is I have family that live in Peterborough and visited there about 15 years ago. It was so nice to read a story set in a place where I had been.


    • Hi Karen,
      When my children were small it was even more exhausting but the rewards were greater. I used to let them put the Christmas tree up, which made for some interesting looking trees but everyone enjoyed it.

      I think I’d like to have Christmas in the summer! I’ve never tried it (although I had several Christmases in Malta, when I was a child, which could be warm) and I hadn’t thought of Aussie children having their long break over Christmas.

      Thanks for your kind words re All That Mullarkey. I’m going on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire today and will try and remember to mention you and how far across the globe Peterborough is read about! The book that has just come out in Australia, Dream a Little Dream, is linked to All That Mullarkey as it’s Liza’s story (Liza being the sister of Cleo, the heroine of ATM). So you get to see Cleo’s and Justin’s wedding reception.

      Happy New Year! 🙂


      • Karen B

        Wow Sue that would be surreal if my cousins living in the area would be listening to your discussion on the radio….it really seems like a small world sometimes.

        I have your previous books on my Kindle through the US Amazon store, when you mentioned your book was just released here I would like to check out if they are available here in print. To be honest I order most of my print books through Book Depository (so they come from the UK) as a lot of books aren’t available on the shelves here, which is just so frustrating. In this age of technology when you can read reviews and recommendations from all over the world, its then frustrating when you can’t get your hands on the books. I would have missed out on so many great reads if it wasn’t for Book Depository. Looking forward to reading Liza’s story.


        • Hi Karen,
          I did mention you! The presenter, Sue Dougan, gave me an opportunity by referring to All That Mullarkey so I was able to talk about you reading it because of the Peterborough connection.

          My books are available on The Book Depository at but when I try and change to Aus dollars it just gives me another search box. This, hopefully, is just because I’m in the UK. Anyway, Dream came out in Aus on the 1st of January 2013 so you should be able to get it from an online retailer or from your local bookseller. They can always order it for you.

          I’ve heard that Aus readers are in the frustrating situation you outline. They can ally themselves to Kindle US or Kindle UK but not both – which I don’t get, but I expect Amazon understand.

          Happy reading! 🙂


  9. I’m with you on this one Sue! I have hubby off work for 2 weeks, and although it’s nice, I can’t wait to get back to normal (today!) 😉



  10. Hi Sue,
    A very Happy New Year and i am really glad to get back to work. THe holidays have been fun as well as crazy by not able to spare even a bit for work but i guess thats how it is.. Am finally happy the little one is of tto school today and it feels nice to have my fingers run on my mac..


    • Hi Arti,
      Happy New Year!

      I’m going to make you jealous now – my son upgraded my Mac and it’s running in double-quick time. It’s bliss.


      • Hey that sounds interesting….
        Have been wanting to share this with you.. HAve started on my very first chapter book for kids (7-10).. Am loving doing every bit of it and can’t wait for it to get over…
        Thanks for all the tips you gave me during the course.. they have been of great help


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