We wish you a merry coco pops

Christmas Eve

Coco Pops Rocks are not the same as regular Coco Pops. I am now one of those sad people who can’t tell that there is a totally new cereal based on the old cereal but not the same as the old cereal. It’s Christmas Eve and I’m eating Coco Pops Rocks by the handful because (a) nobody else will eat them (b) they’re right here (c) I’m using them to soak up all the prosecco.

The thing about being away at Christmas is that I’m sort of on self-imposed domesticity strike, so other than putting some things in the dishwasher now and keeping on top of the laundry and then I’m basically letting everyone fend for themselves. Shopping involves making sure we have white bread and Nutella (nope, we’re out again) and corn flakes and milk, but beyond those basics I assume we’ll be eating at other people’s houses or out. This is good for my waistline (other than the aforementioned Coco Pops Rocks) but bad for my parenting cred, as somehow my children still expect me to magic up food for them at intervals of, say, seven minutes.

If I was in my own kitchen I could easily whisk up cinnamon buns to proof overnight for tomorrow morning, but here I halfheartedly located some flour, realised it was the wrong sort, despaired of finding yeast, and called it a day. There’ll be chocolate for breakfast. What more do they want?

Stephen’s Day

In 1987 I impressed my Spanish exchange’s big brother by helping him figure out the lyrics to George Michael’s Faith. Remember when you had to wait for the words to the song you liked to be printed in Smash Hits before you could work out what exactly they were saying at that tricky fast bit? Now add the fact that it’s in a language you only know from school – the appearance of a native speaker in your house could up your street cred quite a lot if harnessed for lyric-discovery purposes.

This one, of all the blows of horrible 2016, hits me in the history. Wham! was one of the first groups I liked, George Michael was sexy before I knew that was even what I was thinking, and in 1991 when our class went to the Gaeltacht to immerse ourselves in the Irish language before our oral exams my copy of Listen Without Prejudice was one of the only two tapes our entire household was willing to listen to. (I think the other was The Best of Mary Black. We were an eclectic group.)

So today we’re treating the kids to a George Michael YouTube retrospective, whether they like it or not.


I hope you had a lovely day yesterday. We had an excellent dinner with family, just as it should be.



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