Karolina Czarnecka – “Hera, Koka, Hasz, LSD” (Heroine, Cocaine, Hash, LSD).

Hey hey people. πŸ™‚

Why do I post such weird stuff on here?… I’m very curious if someone will be wondering, even seeing the title… I actually wouldn’t be overly surprised. πŸ˜€

This is a Polish song, as you can probably guess, haven’t shared anything in Polish with you for ages, well as I wrote a few times before I don’t really listen to that very much Polish music nowadays and if I do, the lyrics play very important part and without them it’s often just a piece of weird music so there’s no point in sharing it with you.

Karolina Czarnecka has become somewhat famous in 2014 when she sang this particular song I’m going to share with you, on one of the Polish music festivals. It is an interpretation of a song made by The Tiger Lilies “Heroine And Cocaine”. The festival was rather marginal but quite surprisingly the song became popular on Youtube and then actually nationwide, and at the same time became hugely controversial. I know people who were saying that it is absolute trash and how can such a controversial song, PROMOTING DRUGS (!!! 😱 ) and encouraging to share them, be so fussed about and even still exist on Youtube, that it is odd and just inappropriate and obscene. I thought so too, for quite a long time.

About a year ago, after the boom has washed away, I stumbled on a then newest album of Karolina Czarnecka, very accidentally, and I felt some sort of liking to her rather characteristic, original, versatile style, her strong voice, slightly odd lyrics and music that seemed to just somewhat click with my brain, as a blend of electronica, folk, and lots of stuff in between.

So it made me wonder, what’s up with this “Hera, Koka…” thing, maybe it’s some misunderstanding, maybe the point of it is different? And after I really listened to it carefully, I came to the conclusion that the point of this song is entirely different! THe opposite actually. It is said that the character in the song – Jimmy – has died because of drugs, and his friends did too! – Now it makes much more sense and was a lesson for me to not judge a book by its cover because all the others do so, but rather analyse it more closely.

Recently I also listened to the original song by The Tiger Lilies, and there it is even clearer that poor Jimmy has died, I can’t remember the exact lyrics but there was a mention that he went to heaven. In Karolina’s interpretation there is a mention of “paradise”, which could be understood differently, that he simply got so very high, and seems like most people understand it this way. I know this song can feel very dubious and challenging, and it certainly is provoking, but rather to increased use of our brains, than drugs. After all, there had to be some reason behind it when God equipped us with such powerful devices, so let’s use them and try to think independently, don’t you think so? πŸ˜‰ I like how ironic and sarcastic it is, rather than saying straight forward: “DRUGS ARE EVIL!!!”. Well I guess I’ve gotten used to such irony or even a little obscenity, having a crush on Vreeswijk. However, I still felt somewhat cautious when the thought came to my mind that maybe I’d share this little piece of music with you. Is it really what I think it is? So of course I did some research and I managed to find an interview with Karolina Czarnecka on Youtube, where she is asked what was her message behind her interpretation of this song, and whether she was aware of the reaction of people to it. She said that yes she was, and that her message was just the opposite and clear to find in the lyrics, that drugs cause death. Don’t know whether there is a point in linking to that interview as it is in Polish and the vast majority of my blog readers aren’t Polish, and I’m too lazy haha, if you’re Polish it’s rather easy to find but if you really can’t and are curious I can include it later on for some further reference, just let me know. πŸ™‚

I am also not including THe Tiger Lilies’ version, because Karolina’s version is not a direct translation of it, and because I just much prefer the Polish version. First because in my opinion it’s much more interesting musically, much more creative and the lyrics are sort of more imaginative and detailed too, with more character, hence probably being more provocative.

I don’t feel competent enough to translate the Polish lyricsΒ  to English, and if you happen to know The Tiger Lilies’ original song you know the basic sense, I’ll say that the song tells the story of Jimmy, a good, shy kid, going to school as he was supposed to, to whom the drug dealer sold three fixes of drugs and gave him one for free. At school, the “wise” headmaster got cross with him and told him not to be selfish and share it all fairly with all the students. And then as I’ve already mentioned, Jimmy, together with his friends ended up in paradise, where “all saints started to drug with him”.

OK, so here it is. πŸ™‚ I’m curious of your impressions. πŸ™‚

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Question of the day (30th January).

How would you describe your mum to your friends?

My answer:

Hm, I like to think I’m pretty good at describing people, and generally descriptions. But, I think it depends. Onn what kind of friend it would be, and what sort of description would be needed. Should they be able to recognise her on the train station if they’ve never seen her before, know what sort of mother she’s like, her personality, her likes and dislikes, should it be long or short? There are so many different ways you can describe a person. But OK, I’ll try to write something. I can assume that if you’ve read my previous posts, you already know a fair bit of basic stuff about my Mum, so I’ll focus more on her character.

My Mum is a tall woman, 180 cm, dark-skinned, she has sort of olive carnation I guess it would be called, black hair, naturally with some delicate glimpses of red and hazel eyes. SHe has a round face but with quite gentle features. She is very fit and healthy overall, though apparently she’s just a little bit overweight. You wouldn’t see it though for sure. She is very strong, both physically and mentally, but also feminine at the same time, though likes to think about herself as a pretty tomboy. I wouldn’t say that’s true, but she likes to appear as such. She is a great observer, notices quickly all the visual details of a person or thing she looks at. She’s an aesthete, loves beauty, but usually not symetrical and obviously beautiful things. she is very interested in interior design, and talented at it, very imaginative, dextrous and creative, although she has a very specific taste in it, likes to combine retro stuff with a little bit of a modern vibe, all kept in dark, warm colours, with lots of naturality. She generally likes all things natural. She is hugely passionate about health, lifestyle, natural and minimalistic lifestyle. SHe can talk about it for AGES. What’s healthy and what’s not, why all the pharmaceutical market is cheating, what natural remedies/alternative treatments you should try if you have this or that condition! I am also somewhat interested in medicine, not everything about it, but yes, and I do agree with most things she says, they are definitely true and she is such an expert that I always wonder why she doesn’t have a blog and spread her knowledge further, but hearing all this over, and over, and over, and over, and over… and over again is quite annoying sometimes. My Mum is also a minimalist, or tries to be. She is somewhat interested in beauty stuff, but doesn’t actually have many cosmetics and doesn’t care about them (because they are all just chemistry and people are naive to use them), but she uses lots and lots of natural oils, as much for skincare, as in food. She loves running, is an addict actually, and also does Tibetan yoga. My Mum is a Christian, Catholic, and her faith matters hugely for her, but does yoga for its health benefits, not getting into the whole meditation thing. She loves being out in nature. My Mum is sort of impulsive and sometimes overemotional, usually very spontaneous, optimistic and rather cheerful and likes having fun, but on the other hand she can be also very anxious and hypersensitive. She knows a lot about people and has some sort of a psychological talent, she knows how to talk to them and is also good at negotiating. People usually think she’s charming and nice. She likes to make an impression of an incredibly self-confident person though, and she has become much more self-confident with time, but apparently she’d been really struggling with it and still does at times. She is a homebody, likes her own company, has a bit weird sense of humour, is very intelligent though tries to make everyone else including herself believe that she is just an average housewife and a normal villager. She’s open-minded, curious of the world and likes to have her own way of doing things. She needs her solitude but she also makes a great hostess and likes making parties, meeting up with her family or friends, being around people, can be very outgoing, expressive and also diplomatic. there is generally lots of contrary stuff about her, and she often feels ambivalent about things which sometimes makes her really edgy. People tend to like her and ask her for advice on lots of things, though she often feels misunderstood because of her quite an unconventional view on many things and her unusual, individuaistic way of being. She is very energetic by nature, but because she’s been dealing with anaemia, very low blood pressure, just like me, and earlier some unmanaged food allergies, she tends to tire quickly in recent years. She is very communicative. She is very changeable, both when it comes to her emotions and moods, and her decisions, or even views sometimes, she also tends to be rather impatient. She is loyal, caring, and a good listener, but she can also get very chatty. SHe has generally very strong will, but her incredible changeability can make an impression that it’s not true. She likes to think about herself that she’s like people in the renaissance, likes to do anything, but with moderation.

Of course there is much more you could say about my Mum, just like about everyone, but I think that will be it for now.

How about your mums? πŸ™‚

Question of the day (20th January).

Hi guys. πŸ™‚

I’m sorry I haven’t posted anything lately, have been doing lots of things with my languages and was just disorganised with it all. Here’s the SUnday question.

What did you always want to try but never found the courage to do?

My answer:

Lots and lots of things. I have different kinds of anxiety which all make it difficult for me to do different things. I know that overcoming ALL of them, and all the limitations they put on me is likely going to take me the entire life. One of the biggest and most courageous steps I’ve made in recent years was going to Sweden. I’ve always wanted it, I’ve always wanted to visit all my countries very very much, but at the same time I dreaded it so, so much. My Dad kept promising me for years that one day we’ll go to Sweden. We could realise it only two years ago, but before then, every year he promised me that, and then when we couldn’t go, on one hand I was very disappointed, but on other, probably equally relieved. Going to Sweden, or any of my countries, would mean facing all of my strongest anxieties. Because of this, it could also turn out disappointing, I definitely wouldn’t like if it was so that I would go to Sweden and then something would go very wrong, I rather preferred not to go there than have forever some very bad associations with this trip, I was also worried that I might be simply disappointed with myself, either with my social skills, or facing other anxieties, or even language skills, or that I could disappoint my family perhaps. Not to mention all the small fears I had, but in overwhelming amounts and relating to very different things. I did enjoy our trip a lot, but it was also exhausting for me, because of all the anxiety I had to face and cope with all the time. It was also rewarding because I saw that I can do some things I thought I can’t. THe frustrating thing though is, although I now have this experience under my belt, and know how it feels, I feel that if I’d go to Sweden, or any other of my favourite countries, for another time, the story would repeat. Despite all that I know already, that I can go through this. Maybe I’m wrong, but I can assume so after last summer when my Dad (I guess he must have gotten used to doing it) told me again that this year we’ll go to Sweden again, and would I like to. I said I would, ’cause I would, but as soon as I heard that, I knew my anxieties, despite I faced them back then, haven’t died and it would still be like for the first time for me.

I talk about this to show you that trying new and different things is pretty much always scary for me, even if they are good things that I in fact want. Same about most major changes in life. It feels very scary.

But Ok the question is about something I have never tried so far. One of such things is playing harp, especially Celtic harp. I have learnt to play some instruments in the past – piano and guitar, – though although I do have an ear for music, I wasn’t particularly good at it. One thing was that I didn’t enjoy it that much, just sort of did it because I felt I should, that I was expected to do it because of my “ear for music”. another was my shitty coordination which made it simply hard for me physically or technically to play well and it was always an effort, especially that as I said I didn’t have much motivation, and another thing was my anxiety and all the related stuff, I think they were also getting in the way. Finally, after some years of learning music I decided it’s not for me, and I just feel much better as a listener than a performer. Because I definitely do. And I started to use my musical skills for languages, which are also music of its own kind, in my opinion. But I’ve been always in love with harp, especially Celtic harp as I said, and loved to listen to it. And I’ve always had that dream about playing harp myself. Just for myself, to have fun. I’ve always been OK with having it just in the sphere of my dreams. Having in mind all my fruitless efforts with piano and guitar, I’m not even sure whether I’d seriously want to devote myself to studying it, after all harp is at least equally if not more difficult than guitar or piano, requiring a lot of dexterity and other things that are hard for me. Also Celtic harp is a niche instrument, quite expensive, the more that I woouldn’t be able to just teach myself how to play it, and would have to have a tutor. As I think about all my and my Mum’s trials to find language tutors for me, of whom the vast majority ran away screaming just after hearing that I’m blind, finding a Celtic harp tutor sounds ridiculous. So, I’d have a lot to dedicate, and I’m just not sure whether I’m really up to it. Whether I really want it seriously enough. I guess not, but if I had a chance and nothing to lose, I’d try, even just once, to feel how it is, as I’ve never even seen a harp, so if not because of anything else, than just out of plain curiosity. For now though, I think in this sphere my dreams give me enough satisfaction. What would I dream about if I could even play harp? Or if I learned that it’s something not for me because of my physical limitations? Dreaming about it probably wouldn’t be as pleasant then. And I love my dreams.

So, how about you? DO you consider doing it in the future or leave it in the sphere of dreams?

Question of the day.

Do you ever talk to yourself?

My answer:

Of course I do! As one of my acquaintances once said: “It’s good to talk to yourself because then you can be sure that you are talking with an intelligent person”. πŸ˜€ I can only agree, plus it’s just very interesting, you can come to some very interesting conclusions while talking to yourself, and of course improve your language skills. It sometimes happens that I’m alone for the whole day or so, so then I at least talk to myself (or Misha) to make sure that next time I’ll have to talk to someone I’ll still know how to speak and my vocal cords won’t get too rusty. I’ve once read a story years ago about a monk who was an anchor living on the desert, not having contact with people at all, though it seemed more because of pride and haughtiness than being so very devout, anyway after all those years when he finally did meet another human being he as unable to speak because he simply didn’t know any longer how to do it. Don’t know if it’s inded possible, but it sounds likely so I’d rather avoid it myself, communication is already enough of a struggle for me. πŸ˜€ alking to yourself is also less stressful than talking to other people, and well just fun. What I really really really dislike though and can’t understand, and it just drives me crazy, is the connection people make between talking to yourself and being either mentally ill, or even delayed in intellectual development or something. I just DON’T get it! What does it have in common? I can appreciate that maybe sometimes when you’re delusional you make an impression on healthy people that you talk to yourself, or when for any other reason you don’t have full touch with reality, but lots of people seem to assume that anyone who talks to themselves is mentally ill. I know that nowadays it’s more of a joke for many people, like: “Oh, I’m talking to myself, I must be mental”, but while I’m all for handling things with humour and distance to oneself and the world, I think this can lead to many misunderstandings and it’s a very strange view completely lacking flexibility. I guess lots of people talk to themselves: extroverts – who are always happy to chat and can’t stop even when there’s no one to listen, as well as introverts, who, like me, often even prefer talking to themselves than to others and sometimes might find it helpful to make sense of what’s in their brains. Are they all freaks? On the other hand though, well since I live with mental illness myself maybe there is something true to it but I am just biased. πŸ˜€ Do you have any thoughts on this issue?

Anyways, I find talking to myself a highly useful and enjoyable activity, particularly when it comes to talking in other languages, since in my surroundings it’s quite hard to find anyone that would be willing to talk in Swedish for example. πŸ˜€

So how about you? Why do you do it, if you do? πŸ™‚

Question of the day.

And the actual question for today is…:

ANy drama happening in your life right now?

My answer:

I think we need to clarify what drama is, or at least I have to. ‘Cause I don’t really understand this concept in general I guess. Or do I? For me, drama is a lot of fuss, usually going on in a group of people, which is causing a lot of emotional distress for all interested and people acting impulsively and often like in a drama and sometimes even attention-seeking, but no one actually knows what it’s all about, but despite all that some people like to get into or cause dramas. Or anyway any drama that I have ever been witnessing or somehow involved in was hard to figure out for myself, what do they actually make suh a drama about? It might be that I’m just too socially awkward and stuff, or just not a drama type of person so I don’t get it. Or maybe I do get it right? What drama means for you?

Anyways, back to the drama, or lack thereof, in my life. πŸ˜€ So as you can guess now I think, no, I don’t think there is much going on in my life that I could call a drama, there are rarely such things, because I simply hate dramas and making fuss of anything, so I don’t involve in dramas usually, and if I ever have to witness such things it’s very disorienting and in a way also cringy. Unless there is a real and important cause for making drama of course, then it’s not cringy, but can also be disorienting, but I wonder if something like this still could be called a drama. THere are some intense things going on in my life, like now that I quitted therapy with my last therapist, and have been talking with Mum about very intense stuff and figuring out a lot about it on my own (I maybe could say that I have an internal drama because of that because it’s really really intense) and then there is my aunt who has been sick and just had surgery a couple days ago, but… yeah, I don’t know if such things could be called dramas, I think not really. Our Zofijka is in the “drama stage” of development, she’s in her early teens and also very extroverted, so I often do hear about her school dramas, which are very, veery weird and cringy, and I guess that’s all I can say on this very confusing topic.

So, how about dramas in your life? How would you define a drama in this context, do you see it the way I do? πŸ™‚

Let the light in – Lucia morning in Sweden

I’ve always thought that st. Lucia day celebrations in sweden are such a beautiful and interesting tradition, I think we should steal it and have in Poland too! Anyway, I thought I’d reblog this post for you my readers so that those of you who might not know about this holiday could learn a bit about it. We don’t have any particular celebrations of saint Lucia here in Poland as I said, although she is quite well known as a patron saint of the blind. And we do have gingerbreads at many homes at this time of year because Christmas is coming, but we are more restrained than Swedes and no one eats them yet. πŸ˜€

Watching the Swedes

A Chinese proverb says this,

β€˜It’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness’.

Never was this more true than today. Lucia day. At the darkest time of the year, when we all are drained by the black mornings and afternoons in Sweden, Lucia pays us a visit. With candles in her hair and surrounded by her handmaidens and boys in a procession, Lucia shines light into the dark depths of our spirits. And slowly, slowly, the day awakens.

I love Lucia. Long live Lucia!

Lucia traditions are celebrated in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Malta, Bosnia, Bavaria, Croatia, Slovakia and St. Lucia, West Indies. But where does she come from and why is she one of the few Saint’s days celebrated in Sweden?

Santa Lucia is believed to have been a Sicilian saint who suffered a martyr’s death in Syracuse, Sicily around AD 310…

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Question of the day.

Where do you stand on the whole β€˜let’s kick off Christmas’ business?

My answer:

If I’m totally honest, I actually find it a bit annoying how overrated Christmas is. I do like it, but I just hate how commercialised it is. I might be wrong on that, but I have an impression that we here in Poland are a bit more composed in this field. Of course, media and marketing are pretty universal all around the world, but as for people, I have an impression they’re not as obsessed about Christmas as people in some other countries often seem to be. ‘Cause, from what I see as an outside observer, it looks like as soon as the Halloween boom ends, people are running straight into the Christmas obsession.

Over here, the traditions of All Souls’ Day and All Saints’ Day are pretty much a part of our culture, a rather important one I’d say, so we come into the November in a rather slow, melancholic way, rather than with our mind racing already to December. You can see gravelights in the shops, and the atmosphere, even in the always noisy media, is a bit more tranquil and pensive.

So like the first decade or so is occupied by thinking about our loved ones who died, and then is Independence Day, which is always hugely talked about in the media, but I don’t think it has a really important place in marketing, though this year it was a bit different because it was the 100th anniversary of our Independence so it was all much more festive.

And then, we too, kick off the Christmas season. At least the shops and streets and media do, people are a bit more restrained, or perhaps have slow reaction, but generally it’s not like switching to the Christmas mode straight away, it’s more of a process, so it’s actually the second half of November when things are really running. But still, people DO obsess about Christmas. I guess even my writing this post that early shows it very well, haha, but I saw the question in the Internets, so wanted to know what your opinions are and share mine. πŸ˜€

And I wonder why on Earth?! Are we all in the so called Christian world so naive and submissive and whatever media will tell us, or shops will set on the display, we’ll swallow it? Or maybe, although so many people declare they are atheists, or agnostics, or Christians, but not practicing (what’s the point in being a not practicing Christian, that’s another thing), maybe we still subconsciously need something to believe in, something to celebrate, something to be happy about, so let’s be happy that Christ was born, no matter whether it makes any difference for us practically or not. But that seems not a very good explanation, especially that in all that mess it’s actually hard to tell, what we are celebrating. It’s Jesus’ birthday, but sadly, although the celebrations are running, the birthday boy Himself doesn’t receive much of attention, I’d risk a statement that some of His “guests” actually might not realise what they are celebrating really, other than it’s just to have fun. Maybe that’s why it gets on my nerves when people write Xmas instead of Christmas. I know, I know, the Greek letter Chi, but still, it looks so weird… In the spelling Christmas, you have Christ, so you know what’s it about, but Xmas looks so enigmatic. Like a mathematical operation, with an X. No one knows what it is… And I hate maths too, and I (usually) try to avoid the abbreviations, so yeah, it really don’t like “Xmas”. It looks like a mass/mainstream holiday about which no one knows anything. Yuck. My Mum once said a funny and interesting thing, if aliens came to us around Christmas time – and I think they don’t have to necessarily be aliens like from another planet, anyone who doesn’t really get the modern world, culture, just lives under the rock, – so if they came and saw all the people so very excited, rushing to the shops, all the decorations and generally the overwhelming waves of stimuli everywhere, what would they think we’re celebrating? Would they be able to guess it? My Mum said that in her opinion they’d think we’re celebrating that the snow has fallen, or, because it doesn’t, we’re making a ceremony to beg heavens for sending it. πŸ˜€ Quite possible. Well, they don’t have to know what we are celebrating, but usually, when people celebrate something, especially that loudly and festively, they have a good reason for it, they want the reason to be visible, known, they are happy about it. So what are we happy about when celebrating Christmas? I mean there are lots and lots of things to be happy about, but is there something particular for most people that would set Christmas apart from any other holiday? Or maybe, the reason why we love Christmas so much, is that we’re so greedy! For good, festive food, for presents… Actually, for many people, presents seem to be what counts the most, and while it’s obvious that we enjoy receiving nice things, and it’s rather normal for children to focus on it a lot, I’m not sure it’s a good thing for adults to look forward for any holidays mainlyin hopes they will get something, as a primary reason. So I hope that’s not the point of it.

Also, what strikes me, is how when finally Christmas starts, the overwhelming euphoria finally subsides, then when it’s the second day of Christmas, or Boxing Day or st. Stephen’s Day or however else you call it, it’s much much quieter with people solely focused on watching TV and eating the leftovers, or curing from digestive issues, and then when the second day of Christmas is gone, all the turmoil is gone too. Well that’s quite logical, Christmas is over so the euphoria is over too, but (maybe it’s just me?) to me it looks a little bit unnatural. Like you obsess about something, shout about it, and then you suddenly go quiet. Sometimes it feels a bit like we already forgot about Christmas as soon as it’s finished. It shows how true it is that waiting for something nice to happen is often much more enjoyable than this thing itself.

But I have an impression that it should be the other way around! It still is so in a way over here, and I guess generally in Catholic countries Christmas season, the actual Christmas season is still a bit more pronounced despite the pre-Christmas euphoria. ‘Cause it doesn’t make much sense to me that now people want to have Christmas season in Advent or before, and then all the joy is gone after Christmas ends. It is like with a child who can’t wait for his Christmas presents, so he unwraps them weeks earlier, and then after Christmas all the joy is just a dim recollection.

I feel like Advent should be the time of awaiting. Some people say it should be a sad time of uncertainty, I don’t think so. But it definitely shouldn’t be euphoric and shouty. Just waiting patiently and happily, preparing, in peace and quiet, maybe a bit pensively.

And then, when Christmas (or Christmas Eve) comes, or just a couple days before, you can get real Christmassy, get out the decorations and stuff.

And after Christmas, you have your lovely Christmas season until 6th January, or even longer if you wish. I don’t know actually whether it’s a norm in other countries too that Christmas season can last for longer. But for us, it’s as long as until 2nd February. That’s how long you can “officially” sing Christmas carols, and you can still see Christmas trees and other christmasy decorations in like mid January in lots of houses. People are eating up their ginger breads, visiting all those whom they weren’t able to visit on Christmas and giving them presents, etc.

At least to me, that makes much more sense, and that’s how things are in my house. If we have some stuff to do that needs more preparations, or that we don’t want to do in a rush, we will of course do it earlier, not in the last minute, but that’s usually not until the December starts. From what I know, in other countries which celebrate Advent, it can start at different times, but for us it’s roughly last Sunday of November or first Sunday of December.

Our family tradition related to Christmas is that we can’t do without pierogi with cabbage and mushrooms on Christmas Eve’s dinner. I suppose you all know what pierogi are, but if you don’t, I’ll tell you it’s a dish, made of dough, and they can have various stuffings. The Christmas pierogi are usually with cabbage and mushrooms. We all love it except for my Dad, and both me and my siblings find it the best and absolutely necessary element of Christmas Eve dinner, ’cause other than that it’s mainly fish, and neither of us is too keen on fish. Particularly my brother loves these pierogi.

So they have to be prepared earlier, and our poor Mum usually makes a whole lot of them so that there will be enough of them for the whole Christmas season, so no one would whine that they are already gone. They wait in the refridgerator until Christmas Eve.

As for the Christmas decorations, we usually get a Christmas tree and decorate it just a couple of days before Christmas Eve, and sometimes even on Christmas Eve morning. Same with other decorations, which had been mostly made by my Mum, or things that we have since many years and don’t change them. Our Christmas tree rarely stands for a long time, Mum usually wants to get rid of it quickly as she hates the needles on the floor, and Misha is usually very determined to climb up on it, take off the decorations and eat the branches, but we don’t want an artificial one.

Me and Zofijka really like making gingerbreads, but we don’t always do them, but if we do, it’s also usually about a week before Christmas. The rest of food is made later.

Buying presents is a thing that is quite time consuming and sometimes might be a little bit of a hassle, but for us it always seems to go rather smoothly, I buy all of the things I want to give people or myself online about a week before Christmas or so, or I go buy them with Mum when there is another opportunity and we have a bit of a time for it.

And of course Mum does a big cleaning a couple days before Christmas, but, if I’m honest with you, my Mum is a little bit of a stickler and for me it doesn’t seem as that big house cleaning is particularly different or bigger than any other casual cleaning, (but don’t tell her I said this πŸ˜‰ ).

In the past, our Christmases used to look very festive and familial and loud, and, of course it’s nice to see all your family, have a lot of yummy food and stuff, but it was always quite challenging and anxiety provoking for me, and in a way I didn’t particularly like it. Since a couple of years though, we have our Christmas Eve dinner at home – we always had it with grandparents in the past – and then, after the dinner with just my parents and siblings and Misha, we go for a while to grandparents and generally my Mum’s family, until it’s time for the Midnight Mass. And last year, apart from that, we weren’t celebrating too festively, we spent time mostly together, without extended family, and it was calm and not overly euphoric.A

And that would be all as for my Christmas preparations and stuff, and as you see, they’re neither big, nor particularly early, it’s also that I myself don’t have much to prepare other than buying presents for people, I don’t have my own house so luckily I don’t have to do the big house cleaning, it could be quite disastrous and then indeed it could be a good idea that I should start it straight after Halloween. πŸ˜€

And I am happy that in our family it’s clear what we are celebrating.

OK, so what’s YOUR view on this? And how early or late do you personally prepare for Christmas? Do you like it? πŸ™‚