I see it as one of my duties as a parent to start traditions in my family, particularly at this time of year. For example, my parents introduced the Ceremonial Fetching of the Christmas Pork Pie to our festivities one year and it stuck. Also traditional is the flicking of Quality Street wrappers at my mum when she suggests that we might like to accompany her to church on Christmas morning instead of imbibing vast quantities of Bucks Fizz in her absence and mumbling obscenities at whoever suggests going for a walk after Christmas dinner. It is also imperative that one does not consume a proper breakfast on Christmas Day or Boxing Day. Instead you must eat handfuls of peanuts, Twiglets, sausage rolls, chocolates - anything with no nutritional value that's lying about.
Since we've had Rory, I have introduced a particularly charming tradition. Every year he is taken to a shop to choose a decoration for our Christmas tree. They are stored in a tin, he is responsible for putting them up every year and whenever he decides to leave home, he will take his box of decorations and all the memories therein with him. I am well aware that this would work better had he been a girl as an 18 year old girl is likely to be more impressed with the thought of this than a teenage boy, and I imagine that after about the age of 10 he will be grunting at me to get lost from his stinking teenage boy bedroom whenever the subject of choosing a Christmas decoration is brought up. For now though it is delightful, and, short of something to do this morning, I decided to take him out to choose his 2011 decoration.
Lets picture the scene in years to come. The Disgrace family are sitting around the Christmas tree with the decoration box out, looking nostalgically through Rory's tin of decorations:
"Ahhhh, the blue snowman bauble. You were 6 months old the year we bought that. You pointed at it and smiled so we knew you liked it. Oh look, a little knitted cat. You chose that for your second Christmas. you were obsessed with making cat noises that year and you gave it a kiss in the shop. And the year you were two and a half. You were so excited by all the lights and Father Christmas coming that year and we went to the special shop in town and you chose....SWEET MOTHER OF FU.....
Yes, this is what Rory has chosen to represent Christmas 2011. And ALL THE CHRISTMASES THEREAFTER. Shudder. Lets have a closer look.
You should know that I am hyperventilating a little bit. Look at the teeth. LOOK AT THE TEETH. Not only that, you pull a string hanging out from up it's chuff and it beats the drum like it's caving someone's head in with a meat mallet. God bless us, every one.