Nearly.....anyway :) the kids had a blast, The Xbox recluse got an X-Rocker chair which I am sure we will regret at some point as it pumps out 200 watts and sounds like WWIII when he plays his delightful high body count games ....put it this way it sounds like we have an indoor high calibre shooting range somewhere in the house
my step daughter got a chocolate fountain.....apparently it's all she wanted we topped her up with clothes etc new jeans etc, the chocolate fountain I had my doubts about lets just say it's messy, hard to clean and makes the house smell like a Thorntons chocolate factory on a hot day, either way the kids had an equal amount spent on them, even Freya got a look in and is now swamped with various chewy things that vibrate and brightly coloured rattles that light up and clothes even her very own first Christmas teddy, the littlest lad got a astronomical telescope and his first view of the moon was peppered with "Ohhhhh look you can see all the bumps and craters and everything and it looks like it's on fire" I tried to explain why the edge of the moon wavered like that but before I managed "it's caused by the earths atmosphere" he was already running into the house to drag Andrea out for a look, he also saw his first view of Venus, and I was just lining up Saturn for him when he was called in for bedtime, but it was nice seeing his face light up and getting a different view on things he took for granted :)
all in all the kids had loads of presents and remarked how nice it was to have a new source of presents in the shape of my family :) after all it was our first Christmas together.... it was really...really nice I went to my parents on boxing day after I had cleaned up some of the devastation of Christmas day and spent some time with my sisters and their respective husbands, all in all very civilised, Andrea turned up later after her M5 dash..... a bit too late for my London based sister and her family as they had to drive back to the big smoke......but everybody else got a cuddle off Freya and she even fell asleep on Williams lap, he is besotted by her but won't admit it ......I asked my Dad to keep his eyes peeled for a "cheap" wood working lathe, because I'm going to start turning bowls again mainly because it is probably THE most soothing pastime I have ever discovered besides walking and climbing, plus there are craft shops which will snap my hands off for unique wooden bowls which they seem to sell for £30 - £50 and it beats giving them away for nothing, and even if the profits are simply ploughed back into purchasing the seasoned timber and waxes it's worth it :)
as mentioned earlier Andrea dropped the kids off at Gordano Services on the M5 so their Dad could spend some time with them which is cool plus it gives us five days off, her ex even commented on how much of a Daddies girl Freya was, which was nice :) I'm working for these five days which puts a bit of a damper on the time off but you can't have everything, in some ways I wish my ex and I got on even half as well as they do, but it's unlikely, different people, different history.....and neither of them are quite as mad as a box of demented rabid frogs.....
a few days before Christmas I dropped off my usual Christmas gifts for my daughters, I'm not holding my breath to have any thanks it would after all be breaking the hard and fast rule to expect anything else, I didn't even bother putting in our new address it is after all completely pointless letting them know what it is ..... it does upset my parents though that two of their grand children are complete strangers and the very best they can expect is a thank you letter once a year for any presents they have..... I also heard that Ellie my sisters daughter has been cut off now, as she used to talk to my eldest daughter on MSN..... weird behaviour to say the least..... :(
Speaking of which my eldest daughter is 18 on the 31st of December.... (Bloody hell is it really 18 years since I held her in my arms in St James Hospital.....seems like 5 minutes ago !!!) no longer a child but a young adult.... it saddens me that there isn't any contact with either of my daughters, because they are missing out on so much, as I am in not having any contact with them, but it's her/their decision and I respect it, I could contact them I've known their email addresses for ages, but considering the last response it seems the very last thing they want is anything to do with me or my/their immediate family, so I'll just leave it at that..... as much as it saddens me, and as the years pass by it seems the memories become more distant, it hurts less now than it did, I'm not sure if that's just my own self protection mechanism's kicking in, which I have perfected over the years or because you can't be sad all of the time, or if it's just me getting on with my new life....
It was weird walking up to the old house, to hand deliver the cards (not that I don't trust the Royal Mail or anything) it seemed grimy and cold, actually it was, the door was filthy with road grime and there was rubbish lying around in the front, either way I couldn't wait to turn my back on the place, and get back to our house in the countryside :) I remember thinking "I bet the walls are still pink from being plastered and unpainted" and I shuddered to think how miserable I would have been had a bitten the bullet (again.....) and opted to stay instead of leaving as I did all those years ago, it was the hardest decision I have ever had to make, but it was for the best..... of that I'm 100% sure
I wish my daughters well and every happiness and a good and happy new year and if in the future they find only half the happiness and love I have now they are indeed lucky, and one day I hope they do get in contact but it's entirely up to them
I'm happy now I have a family that loves me (well likes me at least ;¬) ) and a lovely daughter who's smile just says it all, it will be nice when Freya can talk and calls me Dad, it's been a while........but in the meantime her giggles and smiles more than make up for not talking :)