Once Christmas is "over". I look forward to our family New Year's Eve celebrations. When I was growing up we always held "street parties" and NYE meant Black Lace, dancing in the hallway, party food, games and drink. For the Millennium (which doesn't feel all that long ago to me!) we hired a marquee and put it up on the spare plot at the bottom of the road and enjoyed the usual festivities but with added fireworks and champagne! During my few child free adult years I went out "into town" but never really enjoyed it to be honest so I'm more than happy to stay in with the kids to celebrate.
We usually have party food but this year we had a takeaway for a change. Then we played party games. Here we're playing, "Who Am I?", we also competed on the Wii. When we said goodbye to Ceri and Lexy after Christmas we didn't think we'd see them until 2017 but luckily for us, they decided to come down and celebrate New Year's with us all.
The night passed by very quickly as always. Family popped in for a drink and a game. The kids stayed up like they have every single year.
As we approached midnight, the music and games were stopped and the TV was turned on so we could join in with the celebrations in London.
We then wished everyone a happy new Year, linked hands and sang Auld Lang Syne. It's just a tradition, but to me it's always a poignant one, reminding us not to forget old friendship.
"We'll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne."
Lexy let the New Year into the house for us.
Then we went outdoors for party poppers and to watch fireworks (I forgot about the sparklers I'd brought over but we'll light them again).
I told the kids that my sisters and I used to run up and down the road with our friends shouting "Happy New Year!" to the whole street, so they asked to do this too. So we did!
Then we continued games inside while Dave took Danny and Rebecca over to say Happy New Year to Granny and Grampy.
It was a fun, family night but sadly our celebratory mood was quickly put to an end.
Early New Years Day morning (a time of day I rarely see after NYE, I'll admit), mum was struggling with her chest. She asked us to call an ambulance so we knew she was bad.
The ambulance came very quickly and the paramedics were brilliant as were the staff in Accident and Emergency. She is now recovering in our local Intensive Care Unit. She's still sedated and ventilated, so of course, we're missing her lots and can't wait for her to feel better soon but know it's best to take all the time she needs and they wait until her chest has fully recovered before they begin to wake her.
For now, we just sit with her and tell her how much we love her. We're sure she smiled today when we said this, so she knows.