Making a Community Christmas

Making a Community Christmas

What a day out we had on Monday, making a community Christmas for Cleveleys. Well it was supposed to be a morning, but as we hadn’t finished what we were doing we decided to stay. I finally got home at 4pm!

Jane and some of the others went at 9 o’clock to get the room ready, which the community centre let us have free of charge, wasn’t that nice of them. Kevin and I followed on and got there at 10.45 as we were still doing things at home. It would be nice to be able to just get up, have little to do and walk out on time. But we lead a different life to most of our friends, with commitments that we have to do of the pets variety, along with all the other household jobs that face us. So Kevin and I were left to bring up the rear as we might say! Poor Derek didn’t go as he’d had a bad night with his AF and was feeling pretty rotten. So he stayed at home, which was a good job as we couldn’t have left the dogs for all that time, or else!

A tidy house

Anyway, we went to the centre, having got rid of boxes of decorations and all the stuff that has been all over our house and other peoples too. At last, we can put milk bottles into recycling without having to wash and dry them, bliss. All the stacks of paraphernalia have gone, even more bliss as it was everywhere.

We got inside the building and dizzy me went ploughing into a yoga lesson, to which I beat a hasty retreat I can tell you. Standing in all positions with my feet on my head left me a long time ago! I should have known where they were though, as there was a heck of a din coming from the end room. To which we thought that’s got to be our lot, as we make a noise everywhere we go.

Making a Community Christmas

Sure enough we went in to be met by a packed, very hot room with loads of tables together in the centre. There was ‘stuff’ everywhere, it looked like organised chaos, but how nice to see. So many people had turned out to make decorations to try to make Cleveleys look a bit more Christmassy, which has been sadly lacking for a long time.

Every chair was taken, members of the public came too which was nice to see, even a tiny tot in her pram. Where we were going to sit was a puzzle. Then Jane who apparently had been whizzing round the room like a whirling dervish, gave me her chair and Kevin went into the hall to see what more people were doing.

Making a community Christmas in Cleveleys

I started making curved bottle bottoms into snowflakes, along with a lot of laughing might I add. My drawing skills are well known in our house and in spite of me getting an O level in art hundreds of years ago (I think the marker must have been on whisky) I still am no artist. Unlike the other three at home. Give me my colouring and I am fine, my strength is being able to put colours together, which usually turns out quite good.

Chrissie making snowflakes

There were people sorting pine cones out, some made into wreaths by Liz, one of our friends. While others were cutting things out and goodness knows  what. The tables were in uproar with stuff everywhere. But by twelve o’clock it was clear that no way were we going to finish what we were doing.

Lunch time

As a result, Liz suggested ‘anyone for fish and chips’. By now some people had left as they had other things to do. It must have been the flagging look on our faces that did it, you know, the ‘feed me now’ look. So Kevin and Liz went off to the chippy to feed us before we fell under the table. My generous daughter bought them for us all in thanks of people coming and staying to help, wasn’t that nice.

She’d left the house at 9am with a migraine which was still raging when we got home. She said ‘I bet no one had an idea how awful I felt’ but I did, her mum who knows her inside out. Her face was scarlet and her eyes had that usual headache look. The poor lass has more headaches than anyone I know and as she said, if I stayed put every time I had one I’d never go out.

Snow is falling

Anyway, watered and fed we began the mammoth task of joining the snowflakes up to make garlands. They’re pretty long ones too, which caused a lot of ‘oohs and ahs and aren’t they pretty’. Kevin was off with the glue gun, busy sticking them together, as well as burning himself and dropping it down his trousers.

Snowflake garlands
Snowflake garlands

Eventually everything was done and we got cleared away to go off home with a feeling of a job well done. It was brilliant to be with friends and working together in harmony for a good cause. There’s nothing like the friendships you build up with like minded people. We all said how lovely a day it was. Anyway, we rolled back home exhausted and ready for a cuppa and some tea. I would never have believed how it tired us all out well and truly, but what a job well done. Next Monday we’re be assembling everything in the town centre so there will be more laughter no doubt!

Why don’t you join in?

This lovely group of people and community spirit that I keep writing about isn’t an exclusive club. There’s a core of us who, I suppose, do most of the hard work, but it wouldn’t be possible without the help of so many volunteers. People come and people go, and the group changes shape over time, but everyone is made very welcome. It’s also lovely to be part of a group where you don’t have to stand on ceremony and you can just be yourself.

If you like the sound of it and would love to be part of this community, then why don’t you? All you have to do is come along. It might take you a few weeks to feel like you’re really part of the crowd, but that’s normal. In a month or two you’ll feel like you’ve always been involved! The more you join in the more you’ll get to know people.

We’re putting decorations up between 10-12 on Monday 2 December. You won’t miss us, we’re noisy and dressed in yellow hi-viz. Say hello, make a donation, come and help. Go on, it’s great fun!

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