The lead up to Christmas is a mixture of merriment, buffoonery, joviality, stress, overwork, exhaustion and sleep deprivation. IF I make it to Christmas I will be virtually comatose, John will have to set up an alcoholic drip and feed me chocolate until I finally come round.
If you had walked into the shop at any point over the last week you could have been excused for thinking you were on the set of one of several Holiday movies, including Elf, The Grinch, Pete’s Dragon and Mamma Mia.
We’ve been ridiculously busy this week, not only because it’s Christmas, but because it’s our busiest time for funerals! It’s slightly odd and terribly sad that so many people pass away at this time of year – maybe it’s the thought of Jeremy Kyle’s Christmas Special, or sucking on soggy sprouts, while listening to the Queen’s 64th Christmas address.
Becky, Rachel, John and I have been in the shop all day today (Sunday!), preparing for two Monday funerals. I’ve said many times before, but I really do LOVE doing funeral flowers. I see them as a celebration of life and it’s a challenge to make each tribute very personal and specific to those who knew and loved the person. Recently, I was asked if I could create a ‘friendly’ dragon out of flowers, for a lady whose grandchildren jokingly referred to her as ‘the dragon.’ “Of course, no problem at all” I said smiling, thinking “Oh ****, ****, **** *** how on earth am I going to do that!” Thanks to my brilliant team of elves, we came up with a magnificent tribute, which the family loved.
This success was followed by a couple of funeral fiascos. We spent an afternoon arranging flowers in a church. A Church’s fridge-like conditions are pretty much perfect for keeping flowers and foliage fresh and green. All they need is to be arranged in some well soaked oasis, so we left the church pleased that everything would look splendid the following morning – if only the family hadn’t been so considerate to their fellow mourners, by whacking up the heating to near tropical temperatures! The second fiasco involved John almost knocking himself out, falling off a ladder and destroying one of three outdoor arrangements. To be honest, I almost knocked him out myself when I saw my beautiful arrangement smashed to smithereens!
Back in the shop, the elves were busy wreath making, taking orders for Christmas deliveries and serving the hoards of customers and would-be passers-by taking shelter from the miserable weather outside – there was definitely ‘No Room at the Inn‘ on Wednesday.
From the film ‘Mamma Mia‘ the general theme this week was
I work all night I work all day
To pay the bills I have to pay
Ain’t it sad…
Then I go and accidentally throw the finest RUM (care of Colin) into the till, soaking all the paper notes which we had to hang out to dry.
Ooh, see that girl
Watch that scene
Dig in the dancing queen…
My excitement and anticipation of the Strictly final, was just too much!
All we were lacking was Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth and Dominic Cooper, but we did have John, Colin from Hennings and Max the italian florista.
This week coming is going to be manic, but I’m looking forward to a complete rest. I find relaxing hard but the flower merchant is closed until the morning of Dec.29th, so come next Saturday evening I’ll be in my PJ’s and I don’t plan on getting dressed for almost a week!