The mysterious looking gift waiting under the tree for me was a record player, a wonderfully thoughtful gift that was both very unexpected and very gratefully received. The older I get, and I'm almost certain it's similar for you too, the more the magic of Christmas comes through spending time with those special people in life and being able to tell them just how blooming amazing I think they are.
I haven't asked for anything in particular around Christmas or my birthday for a long while now, but it turns out that my words of assurance that "a handwritten card or perhaps a nice box of chocolates would be more than enough" are pretty consistently forgotten almost as soon as I've said them each year. In their place a turntable, two of the Barnes & Noble leatherbound books and one of the Soap and Glory gift sets were wrapped up and waiting for me on Christmas morning. I can't have mentioned any of these things in casual conversation more than once each so I think my loved ones are particularly astute and know me almost better than I know myself.
And judging by the overjoyed looks on their faces as I opened the gifts they had picked out for me, giving presents to those people who are always there, come what may, and letting them know how appreciated they are is a magic that transcends all others.
It truly is the thought that counts.
All my love,
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P.S. There's something quite mesmerising watching a vinyl spin around and around, don't you think?