Some Mums put their sprouts on in November and have their Christmas shopping sorted by December 1st. They got discounted electrical goods online three weeks ago, the tree is already up, they actually stirred on Stir up Sunday, and all they need to do is wait for the food delivery to arrive on December 23rd. SMUG-A-RAMA.
Other mothers aren’t so on the ball. Think of this advent calendar as your Timeline of Panic. Print it out, stick it on the fridge and promptly forget all about it. But don’t worry, what you lack in common sense you make up for in resourcefulness. After all, you’ll get to the 25th even if it kills you…which it probably will…
Dec 1st –You forgot to buy an advent calendar! Other mums probably have nice wooden ones from John Lewis, filled with homemade treats. Yours is the last one in the Jet garage, and it’s full of dog chocolate that went off in 2013.
Dec 2nd – You’ve got Granny and Papa, Auntie Mary, 20 kids and a difficult husband to buy for. Stand motionlessly in the middle of the shopping centre, freaking out. Before you know it, you’ve panic bought a mop bucket and an international phone card with 500 minutes of pre-paid calls to Zambia.
Dec 3rd – WINE
Dec 4th – Did you make a costume for the Nativity yet? A sheet of bubble wrap and a broomstick left over from Halloween does not a shepherd make.
Dec 5th – You should really put the tree up soon. Everyone on the street has windows lit up with twinkly, sparkly, festive lights, and your living room looks like a hotel room in The Shining.
Dec 6th – Bought any presents? No, Corn Flakes and washing up sponges don’t count. Neither do mop buckets.
Dec 7th – It’s the Secret Santa at work, but you don’t have anything in the house that would be suitable. Plus, you got your boss. Wrap up an onion and hope for the best. (Hey it’s a RED ONION – that’s festive, right?).
Dec 8th - Make a list. Look at it. It’s longer than the length of the hall. Cry.
Dec 9th – WINE
Dec 10th – The date is getting into double figures now. You should really start thinking about that nativity costume. And buy some presents?
Dec 11th – Oh no. It’s Dress As An Elf day at nursery and it completely slipped your mind! Put an upside down green watering can on your child’s head. (Don’t forget to empty it first). Go to A&E to get it removed.
Dec 12th – Everyone you meet is smugly sipping pumpkin spice lattes and saying that they’ve finished their Christmas shopping. Buy a large bottle of Baileys to cheer yourself up.
Dec 13th – Putting your tree up before the 12 days of Christmas is sacrilege, in your opinion. The world has gone mad. (You spent the Christmas tree budget on Baileys).
Dec 14th – Watch Iceland Christmas adverts and think about maybe making a food shopping list at some point in the future. Honestly, what the hell was Peter Andre’s agent THINKING?
Dec 15th – MUST get presents, MUST get presents, MUST get presents. Watch Scrooged instead.
Dec 16th – Nativity! Strip the beds, find a sheet, mop handle for crook, skipping rope for belt - job done.
Dec 17th – Kids write a wish list for Santa which involves PS4s, Xbox Ones, tablets, DS3s, ponies, laptops, flat screen TVs, bikes and gold plated unicorns.
Dec 18th – Panic buy some charity Christmas cards. Realise stamps cost ONE MILLION POUNDS. Wish you’d sent a Christmas cat video email instead.
Dec 19th – Completely forget to send your Christmas cards.
Dec 20th – Put the Christmas tree up after much wailing and complaining from the children. You thought it would be a joyful and festive occasion, but you have pine needles in your eyes, a punctured thumb, the kids are crying, the cat is climbing up it and the lights don’t work. WINE.
Dec 21st - Still no presents. The shops are so busy – there’s no way you’re going out in that.
Dec 22nd – The fridge is looking bare. Attempt to get into the Marks and Spencer’s food hall, but you are beaten back by a scrum of angry old ladies, desperate to get that precious bag of pre-made chicken gravy. Get flustered and go to Poundland for last minute stocking fillers (the kids will like Quavers, pegs and windscreen wiper fluid, won’t they?)
Dec 23rd - Wake up in a cold sweat. Go on a massive online shopping spree with exorbitant next day delivery and spend £2000 on presents, food, booze and boxes of Lindor.
Dec 24th – Wrap, wine, wrap, wine, wrap, wine, wrap, fall down the stairs pretending to be Santa. Ruin your child’s dreams.
Did you remember to buy a turkey?