We've just spent the most perfect new year's day.
Gertie got up quietly and played with her little brother for a good hour this morning, giving us a tiny lie-in following last night's (moderate) celebrations to see in the new decade.
A large, leisurely breakfast followed; then a long walk through the woods from our house to a nearby pub for lunch beside a roaring log fire. (Entirely appropriate for this Hearth-mother.)
On the way home there was plenty of splashing in puddles, or 'bashing the pedals" as it is forever known in our family since this is how Gertie used to pronounce it when it first became one of her favourite things to do.
Lots of fresh air for the children put the colour back into their cheeks and means that they have both gone down to bed willingly and a little early.
How different from hungover, unproductive new year's days of old! The me of now bears hardly any resemblance to that person a decade ago who hadn't yet met her husband, was barely at the start of her teaching career and who most definitely did not have any interest in having children.
I spent the millenium eve a decade ago on Westminster Bridge awaiting the fireworks and 'river of flame' with a group of girlfriends. It was a cold, depressing evening, with my overriding memory being of drinking too much cheap wine from plastic cups resulting in us having to take turns to surreptitiously wee (if such a thing is possible) within a huddled circle of the girls due to the fact that we couldn't move off the bridge because of the crowds. I lost my sister for a couple of hours, she sprained her ankle and it took hours to get back home. Now this year's experience was far less dramatic but much, much happier.
What a difference a decade makes.