All through life, my closest family members have accused me of being a crap liar - particularly when it comes to the naughty little white lies. "I can read you like a book" my dad always says and now, after living with my boyfriend for 6 months - he says the same. It isn't just lies but when I'm feeling on edge or worrying about something, I repress it and replace it with yet another problem - a silly one. On Monday I was stressing about a potential expensive problem with my car but instead I told James Asda had run out of the Christmas Trees we wanted and that we weren't having a tree now. It was an irrational, childish statement but it was simply hiding the real cause of my anxiety. Eventually when I explained, he told me to just tell him about the real problem instead of creating new ones.
It isn't just lies I have trouble with, keeping a suprise for someone is a difficult task for me. For the first time since leaving the family nest, I can safely say my house feels like home. Although I share it with James and his friend - it's mine. Well, ours. I can put things where I want them, clean up when I'm ready to clean up and have friends round whenever I feel like it. So this Christmas will not only be our first Christmas together (we've always found it easier to go to our own families before now) but our first Christmas in a place we can both truely call home.
We won't be hosting a family meal - we're visiting both families on Christmas Day for all that but we'll have the rest of our time off in our home and I want it to be perfect. We can have friends round and we've got all kinds of wines, spirits and snacks to offer our guests. I guess this is one of the reasons why I got in a state about the Christmas Tree.
Moving on from the tree saga, I have just realised how living together makes it darn hard work to hide presents from one another! Most of mine have come from Amazon this year. I have taken advantage of the free postage option and have spent every other day ordering stuff. I'd have done it in one go but I do my shopping gradually instead of using up a whole month's salary in December. James wanted a particular kind of light for the tree (which Asda had also run out of). In the end, the tree came from Argos and lights from Amazon. Then I remembered the book I wanted to get him (best not mention what it is just yet) so ordered that too.
So safe in the knowledge that tree and lights are on their way, I started wrapping all the presents. I feel like there is no element of suprise for James because he knows what I've got for him, so I've bought a few other bits of pieces. In return, I know what I'm getting because I went to the shop and picked it out for him. He told me he has sent it to Santa, so, while he's at work I must not look for it. Like I would..........yes, I would. I've had to spend many Christmas mornings pretending to be suprised because I had spent weeks rooting around mum's bedroom. I'm still like this now - in fact, I'm at mum's house this evening and I've just been rooting through parcels.
Anyhow, while James was at work, I decided to chill out and watch tv. I pulled the foot rest towards me - it's one of those that you can keep things in but we never bother. As I pulled it, the lid came up and I saw a carrier bag. "Don't tell me he's been using this as a rubbish bin!" I say to myself and peer inside (when you live with two blokes, nothing should suprise you). No, not rubbish, just the bag containing my iPod. Oops.
Obviously I've taken great delight in fidgeting with the foot rest every time we sit down to watch tele together. "Stop fidgeting!" He will say. A wicked person has suggested I hide it! Can you imagine the horror he would feel? No, I can't do that to him. I just can't believe he hid it in such a rubbish place. What is he thinking?! I hope he isn't reading this.
Just as James got home this afternoon, my latest Amazon order arrived. Hooray! It was tightly wrapped, I couldn't find the scissors (probably under the pile of baubles in the middle of the living room floor) so James gave me his keys. I'm still not getting in this box so pass it to him. He opens it and pulls out the lights and then horror suddenly spreads across my face. I leap up from the sofa, snatch the box off him and look at his shocked, offended face, "what else did you see in this box?" I demand, hugging it tight, "nothing" he says. Phew! I'd forgotten about the book. He rolled his eyes skywards and sighed at me. As if! Mr Hide It In the Foot Rest Man! He still doesn't know I know.
I proceed to order yet another item from Amazon and a gift for a friend in London. I've chosen her address for the delivery to save paying more postage than necessary. Tonight, I've realised she'll get the receipt and then she'll know how much I've spent! I've had to text her and insist she throws it away without looking at it. I'm so stupid! I just wasn't put on this earth to keep secrets about presents or myself. I really am a book. A book in a library for all the public to read...
Since writing this she's text me back - she ordered her boyfriend's present from Amazon, using his laptop. He logged on today, and had an email confirming his order! At least I'm not the only one who can ruin the element of suprise.