12.25 – 12.31
Sun Dec 31 2023 00:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
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12.25 – 12.31

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Emotions ran predictably high on the 25th and beyond and I frequently totally failed to deal with the little man. More than once the best I could manage was ignoring him while he screamed in my face. Not a particularly effective strategy, but at least I didn’t also end up hating myself for having shouted at him. Threatening to withhold or withdraw things he likes can sometimes work, but I worry I overuse it and it always leaves a bad taste. I told him he was making me sad – that just felt like emotional blackmail (to which he’s entirely impervious, so again only served to make me feel worse). Thankfully, he got better towards the end of the week as the adrenaline of Christmas wore off and while he’s characteristically fucked off about having to leave Baba and Gangan’s, I think even he gets the sense that we’ve slightly outstayed our welcome and it’s time to go home (and/or I’m projecting all over him).

None of baby cousin Aila’s infinite chill rubbed off on either of our kids unfortunately.

We Santa got the little man a Yoto Mini which wasn’t a runaway hit (i.e. not a rocket or a magic elf tree – requests for which Santa roundly ignored) but it seems to be growing on him and it’s so good I’m genuinely considering getting one for myself as a lo-fi internet clock radio.

We went for lunch with Andrew, Charlotte, and their youngest Alma, over from Sweden and the first time we’ve seen them in years. Real nice to see them – everyone much more tired and preoccupied with children than before. And we scored some sweet doll’s house furniture that they were otherwise going to be giving to charity.

We also went out for a drink one evening with Johnny and Dani. It’s very sweet how proud Dani is of Johnny and lovely to see how good they clearly are for each other – a lot of that gets lost in translation in the family WhatsApp group chat.

Bae’s uncle William came down to perform a locum baptism for Aila. I was surprised to learn that it included an exorcism. Pretty mad, I thought, but then again you don’t have to pull too hard at that thread to be reminded of how mad all of it is. At least an exorcism gives you something to talk about. I kept my heathen skin out of the holy water firing line to avoid any burns.

We had a big ol’ party after the baptism and caught up with Bae’s uncle Derek and aunt Janet who we’ve not seen since pre-Covid, so they finally got to meet the kids.

We drove back to London via uncle Rich’s on Hogmanay (today). Was nice to see him holding baby girl. Little man (predictably) didn’t want to leave, but he scored some more brio train track which sweetened the deal.

Published my much-slaved-over 2023 in review.

Happy Hogmanay!



My feet have been injury free for a fortnight and I’m delighted about it.