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Mike Allen

Sorry.  See what?  Well Christmas of course.  OK! so what should I have been looking for?  Oh dear, try and think back.  Back to Christmases of a few years ago... Oh yes now I get it.  Yes.  Christmas's past.  Yes folk were at least trying to be happy, kids would be out in the street Christmas morning trying out their new bikes or skates.  If you called at a friends house. the front door would open and allow fragrances of real home cooking to flood out.  Folk themselves would be walking around smiling, there would be laughter banter, you name it.  I can recall as a kid of the war years, folk really made the most of this festive season.  Times were hard, money ...what's that.  There was also, whetherornot you had a Christian belief.  There was an abundance of that.  This year.  OK as I have done since losing my mate, my wife.  I spent xmas day on my tod.  To me it was no different to the day before or even a month before.

What has happened.  OK perhaps you are not of the religios class.  Never mind.  It's the festive season.  So where are the household party's the old joanna (piano) playing out, singing and dancing, acting the fool.  TV News informs us that shops are starting their sales eary.  High St sales are down.  Never mind. Yes this family are skint but, hey, I've got a credit card.  Yippeee.  Thankfully I don't celebrate the festive season.  Thankfully.  I owe no shop or anybody a penny.  So who is the one celebrating now?

And I thought I was the master of 'Bah Humbug'.

We've just had one of the best Christmasses for a long time, despite some real downs during the year with family deaths etc.  We went to my wife's sister for Christmas Day, returning home in the evening to collapse after eating far too much.  Boxing Day her sister and husband, niece and husband plus nephew and new girlfriend came to us.  Our first time of really meeting the new girlfriend who is lovely although understandably a little nervous to start with.  Silly games soon broke the ice, but I've decided I should consider selling all our conservatory furniture because most people sat on the floor.  Benefit of underfloor heating I guess.

Yes, Christmas is horribly over commercialised, but nobody is forced to spend.


Whatever is the point in going on about christmas not being what it was and then saying that you don't celebrate Christmas?  

A case of 'Do as I say, not as I do'. 

Our Christmas was lovely ... a happy time spent with loved ones, small gifts exchanged, not expensive but chosen with love ... good food cooked with care was shared and phone calls made and received from friends and family at home and abroad. Some of our family and friends are religious and some are not, but the spirit of Christmas was alive and well in our homes and we feel rejuvenated and refreshed because of it. 

As with so much of life , the more we put in the more we get out. 

Wishing everyone a healthy and peaceful 2018 

Last edited: 27 December 2017 09:33:35


Christmas is what you make it. 

If you don't make it happen your way you're at the mercy of all the media rubbish and lonliness

Christmas is what you make it, ours was a proper family orientated one. My Christmas lunch came to me, two other daughters fed the rest of the family and then everyone together for the family party which I did hear went on until well into Boxing day. They were always told by my late wife Joan "Christmas is about family and the occasion not presents which are part of the whole not the be all and end all".

Coming from an extended large family of Coal miners, the Durham lot, and  Steelworkers the Yorkshire lot and us having the largest place we got them, all people who worked hard but knew how to let their hair down on the very few and very short days off work. It always included Church during Christmas as that is what it was about.

The media may well have made the season in to a circus for their own means of selling papers radio and TV although you do not need to watch, when we are together all the media including phones are off unless as a group we wish to see something like the Queens Speech (that will probably bring scorn from some) but it is our way, a tradition that we all like.

My wife Joan and I carried on with our family traditions passing them on to Children Grandchildren and now Great Grandchildren. Even though we are now split living in America Canada and France they all carry on the same traditions and apart from the time difference you would recognise the tradition they were brought up with. We all had a Merry Christmas and with the youngest remembered what it was about as they took part in the traditional school Nativity play's. Forget what others do and "Do it your way" they should write a song about it.


Last edited: 27 December 2017 09:59:02


It was never going to be a brilliant Christmas for me and mine as it is the first since I lost my husband.

i still tried to make some effort. Maybe spent a bit more on the boys than usual as they too have has a sh*t year and deserve a little extra. What I would have spent on Paul’s present I donated to the hospice that took such care of us all.

for the first time in years I didn’t go to midnight mass as I haven’t forgiven God for taking my husband yet but i still cooked a full if somewhat smaller lunch, watched It’s a wonderful world on tv, rang friends and family to wish them a merry Christmas and went to the pub for a pre Christmas drink.


Our Christmas has been lovely and is still being lovEly, my daughter, son in law, two grandsons, son daughter in law, step daughter, step grandson all here together, wonderful, most of them still here, as dove says, what’s the point in going on about old days.

My mum used to say ‘ don’t talk to me about the good old days, because they weren’t ‘

shame on Mike Allen's two daughters  and grand children, leaving him on his own at Christmas, I spent every Christmas looking after my parents, i would never have had them left on their own. And my daughter will look after us when the time comes. 

Mike Allen says:

 I’ve got a credit card.  Yippeee.  Thankfully I don't celebrate the festive season.  Thankfully.  I owe no shop or anybody a penny.  So who is the one celebrating now?

See original post

 Neither do I or my family and we are all still celebrating. Don’t put a downers on Christmas just because you ve been left on your own.   Lots of people are alone that don’t have any family at all. 

Lyn says:

... shame on Mike Allen's two daughters  and grand children, leaving him on his own at Christmas, I...

 But he doesn't celebrate Christmas ...  maybe he brought them up not to celebrate it either ... or maybe they offered to pick him up so he could join in with their festivities, but he turned their offer down because, as he said "... Thankfully I don't celebrate the festive season. ..."

Don't think he celebrates birthdays either, although he's told us his is on the 28th 



No point in moaning then is there😉🤔

Each to their own I think.  Plenty of us don't celebrate Xmas as such and whilst some like to look back on The Good Old Days, there seems little point in doing so if it only makes you feel unhappy.

Mike's post is the usual mix of loneliness and random comments so nothing different there  - some posters like his ramblings and most are aware of his propensity for setting cats amongst pigeons and then apologising profusely when things get a bit heated.

Don't see the point in continually picking him up on what he posts ( unless he is discussing garden related matters and you happen to disagree ) - otherwise, let him get on with it and enjoy your family, friends, Xmas or WHY.

 I'm not a fan but Mr. Allen is here to stay whether you like it or not and at least he isn't trying to flog roofing materials, jungle roasted rabbit, etc.


I had to leave my entire family early this Christmas so that I could go back to work serving the older community so that they are not alone. 


There are so many organisations out there who open their doors to ensure people have the option of being in the company of others.

I'm now hundreds of miles from my loved ones, even the dog has stayed with them, alone in my own home so that others won't be.

Having spent the past week helping an old gent buy his Christmas meal, a lady wrap enough presents to sink a ship, sorted a housebound couple out so their heating was fixed before the holidays, I can say, hand on heart, that I am now going to block Mike because his little ramblings written purely because all he wants to do is sit and cause trouble.

Our time on this earth is too precious to come on here and think "Oh Christ is it alcoholism or a bladder infection that affects his mind."

To the rest of you.... I wish you luck, light, and peace x

It must be very unhappy to wish to provoke others and stir up controversy for its own sake - though no-one enjoys a debate more than I do. I don't know Mike at all and I am sorry he has had a miserable time on his own. I do know he has been in poor health and perhaps cannot reach his family; it's a pity they didn't come to him. Even a grumpy old relative if that's what he is deserves a Christmas lunch. But I don't agree that Christmas has changed very much, even though it is more commercial. I'm in my 60's and my Christmas is almost exactly the same as when I was a child, but with added central heating and much better food! Perhaps this year Mike can rebuild his relationship with his family or friends and have a better time next Christmas. I hope so.

I think Xmas is what you choose to make of it Posy - I suspect we are of a similar era but my Xmas's are nothing like those I experienced as a child and.......I like it that way ( tho I agree about the central heating and veg which haven't been cooked to death.

Xmas is so focused on Family - those of us without still manage to survive but there are many who want family members around at this particular point.  Some of us can get by without but there are many who feel left alone and ignored.  Seems more poignant at this time of year but, in truth, its the same every day for some folk.  

Keeping an eye on elderly neighbours, going to chat to someone just for 10 mins or so makes a world of difference but needs to be done all year round. 

Good for you Clarington - you are obviously a caring person and you are helping those people who are lonely and in need of help, company, etc.  

"Unless they choose to be" - not always quite so black and white unfortunately.  


Seriously Posy, his religion doesn’t allow him to believe in Christmas. He wasn’t joking.


Then I really am sorry for him, Lyn. It's an unhappy faith that rejects love and generosity and joy.

An elderly lady I used to help in her garden (succumbed to leukaemia since) ; she was not short of money and had a large comfortable home , enjoyed Xmas on her own .

She would sit with her legs on a stool enjoying her favourite TV shows , sipping a glass of good quality wine . Although she had sons and daughters who would insist on her company at Xmas , she confided in me once , smiling as she said it :-

"Paul , even though I have a close and loving family , always willing to help ; just for once I wish they'd LEAVE ME ON MY OWN AT XMAS" !!!

As Philippa states "not always quite so black and white , unfortunately" ; she had a choice , a lot of people don't .

A lot of our beliefs are imposed while we are too young to argue, we become what our parents and schools dictate. My schools were all C of E my friends were Catholic and in my day never the twain shall meet, or our parents and religious Teachers said. Of course we did at play in our free time sports and other activities. I never understood why the Girl I liked was taboo because she was not of my Parents faith, they must have had a reason. It could well have been that their schools were all religious schools and it was drummed into them. We had an hour a week of religious studies in all my schools plus having to attend Sunday School and Church. I must admit that in the army in the cold of winter and fuel shortage when Church Parade was compulsory many of us were suddenly Salvation army because they had warm stoves and we got tea sandwiches and cake.

The world is not black and white, 50 shades of grey come to mind (now where did that come from) I found that asking questions in Sunday School or Church brought the roof down on you, accept our truth or else, we see splinter groups breaking away from main theme religions and the trouble it causes. We should be careful what we teach our children is what I am saying.



You’re right Frank, IMO, there’s a vast difference between religion and faith, religion is what’s drummed into you as child, but faith is something else. Faith is not believing what is true,  its believing what you want to feel is true.

I’ve known a lot of people that have faith and have been helped where medicines failed, such as depressions, anxiety,  etc, I’m not talking about faith healer quacks, that’s very taboo. 

My OH for one. Without faith in himself  or something else, could have been quite ill When I first met him. 

Lyn, I hear what you say, religion is what is drummed into us, Faith is what we believe to be right and that in my case would include not causing pain to others. It is much bandied about there are no atheists in fox holes there is truth in it and I have seen tough men cry though it was usually for their mothers not for their deity.

I nursed my wife with the full help of the family for seven years before losing her nearly seven years ago your prayers are not for you but for your loved one, I attend the remembrance services and meet so many people I have known all my life, some there for their loved ones some are needing the comfort for themselves. Whatever we believe or not is a personal thing, it is definitely not something we should be fighting over whatever Holy Book we read, as with a lot of Military people we in time become pacifists and tolerant, we should all step back and think of what we do in the name of God.