Dear family and friends,
As you decorate your ethically sourced pine and defrost your free-range nut roast, are you all feeling blessed?
We wouldn’t dream of judging those who embrace disposable commercialism by acquiring plastic tat for their kids and indulging in a month of boozing. Its just not what we are about. Go on and snogg the boss or Xerox your bits at the office party but its not WHO WE ARE. Following retreats to the US, France, Spain and Lyme Regis we have evolved, both as individuals and as a family.
Andrew is whipping up a feast of organic quark and lentil delights for our celebrations and I plan to mark the festivities by being present. It’s a gift. My mindfulness regimen has been brutal but soooo worth it. I’ve taken to wearing yoga pants wherever I damn well please. They work really well from school gate drop-offs to dinner with other concerned Chiswickites. We Sparkes have decided to mark this Christmas by exchanging hand-made gifts and I’m certain my hand knitted woollen leggings will be a great hit with Alex on the rugby field. A far better alternative to skins, I’m sure he’ll agree and I’d be pleased to produce them for all the players in team colours. Nothing’s too good for my precious firstborn. As far as Emily is concerned, avarice be dammed. We are donating, in her name, to the upkeep of a village goat in a wonderful community we visited in Outer Vladzakoo. Its all about empowering the people. Andrew will receive the benefit of my inner peace and a simple book of reflections I’ve jotted down over the past year as witness to our journey.
The children are cool. Alex now in secondary school with almost zero spending money, an ancient mobile phone and plenty of growing room in his new blazer. Personally, I’d agree that weekly bathing suffices but it seems society takes a dim view of natural body odours. As a music scholar, he gets pulled out of class to work on his drums and voice frequently enough that at parents evening in November, certain teachers of core subjects had yet to lay eyes on the boy. But its all good.
Emily joined a new school for Year 5 and so far seems happy enough talking to herself and anticipating letters from her pen pals. She spends a great deal of time hanging upside down over a sofa back and perfecting cartwheels. Apart from writing in her journal and singing, she devotes much of her time to inspecting her face for any changes or anomalies. She has mastered applying nail polish to one hand and hopes to tackle the reverse in early ‘16.
My parents will no doubt be celebrating the run up to Christmas in their newly renovated apartment in Paris. Eric will be motoring around London in his new wheels supplied by his new job and possibly in the company of his new girlfriend. Right on, man. That’s almost too much joy to be spreading in one newsletter so I’ll leave it there.
GIVE PEACE A CHANCE