The tree ornaments are now in their boxes, the candle holders wrapped in tissue paper and the door wreath popped out into the back garden for a few days in case the birds want to rummage through the berries. The cards are in a bag to be de-personalized and set aside for hospice crafts or recycling, depending how inundated with donations the team get. Later the lights will be sorted, packed back into their tins and the tree will be dragged into the back ready for shredding for mulch and, if the trunk is any good a bit of turning or carving later in the year. If the trunk is no good for turning then we'll cut it up and pop it under the hedges for the critters to munch on. The greenery that has lived on in jugs over the last few weeks (and lasted remarkably well it has to be said) will be chopped up and composted and any ribbons set aside for re-use - they're already in a bucket outside waiting for tomorrow when I might feel inclined to don coat and gloves against the chill. J will be press-ganged to hoover through and the surfaces will be dusted down and made ready for the new month's clutter to accumulate - I'm under no illusions I always re-accumulate clutter no matter how many times I sort through and clear surfaces so why deny it?
There are still some un-opened sweets and mince pies as well as half a stollen - so note for next year - you get sweets as presents so you don't need to buy stuff in too! The Christmas cake lasted through to the New Year but only just so we won't get a chance to get fed up with that. Tomorrow's lunch will use up the last of the fresh veg. In fact we've done quite well at using food up as we go along so a larder & freezer check is in store for next week and then I'll do a shop for fresh supplies of store cupboard staples and maybe a few new flavours - but I've a feeling stews, soups and bakes will feature quite highly over the next month or so as we head to the chilly time of year so there won't be too many new flavours just yet.
The music that has rung out over the last month has been de-bookmarked (is there such a word?... oh well, there is now!) and new tunes will now take their place when I'm cooking, reading or just fed up with the TV - more on that later in the month no doubt.
The hyacinth bulbs given as a present are tucked in the dark sleeping and waiting for their time in the sun (12 weeks and counting!!)
There are un-watched box sets earmarked on the Fire stick and player services.
There are un-read books on the shelf behind the tree and, if I'm lucky a few more to come as birthday presents later in the month.
There are more jigsaws stacked waiting to entertain (thanks Mum!) and the watercolours and new glass paints are sitting in their boxes ready for me to dabble once J has gone back to work and Mum has gone home.
A year ago I wasn't sure I'd get to see this one so no more time to be blue, time to make room for the joy of a new month, a new year, and new things to try out.
Joyful January indeed!