Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Day Lunch

In our household Rhonda worked Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day at her hospital (being an "Empty Nester" Nurse, she thought if she worked some co-workers with younger families could have some time at home). Rhonda has the Tuesday off and our daughter and her partner and our two grandsons aged 9 and 6 are coming down to have a "Christmas Lunch" with us - Menu is a local leg of lamb, roasted and served with baked potatoes, baked sweet potato, baked pumpkin and carrot and parsnip with snow peas and green beans and topped with home made gravy. Dessert will be a rich fruit cake and brandy custard (p'rolly Ice cream with chocolate flavouring for the youngsters!)
They will leave home around 8am and hope to arrive about midday. We will have a chance to chat and catch up and then have lunch and then they'll leave for home about 3pm.

There is no 'right' or 'wrong' way to celebrate Christmas but I was made aware of a lot of people who would be alone at home this Christmas Day, many of them elderly. A few friends and I are planned to invite/sponsor twenty lonely people to a lunch organised by a local charity where two community workers looked after twenty to thirty lonely residents in our community, making contact with each and every one of them every day of the week – either by personal visit or by a telephone call.

All of those people receive one cooked lunch meal, five days/week from the local “Meals-on-Wheels” organisation.

My friends and I,  aided by local charity staff fed twenty two lonely people Christmas dinner yesterday afternoon – Prawn (shrimp) cocktail entrees, main of Roast chicken, baked potato, sweet potato and pumpkin, snow peas and gravy, with dessert sweets of trifle and custard. There was also a pre-lunch glass of sherry and a glass of wine served with the meal for those who wanted it. Those who did not want alcohol - only a few and those for 'medical reasons' - had fruit juice.

We had five tables of four and one of two with the two community workers who looked after them as guests as well. During lunch they were entertained by a couple of local musicians who volunteered their time and, of course, Christmas Carols were also sung (or, in some cases, 'hummed' along!)

It went over like a bomb. Strangely they were not all 'poor or underprivileged, many were well off, octogenarians+, who lived alone and depended on regular home support visits.

There were a couple I was a 'bit sus of' as to their qualifying - anyone who can still get to the pub/club regularly on a pension cannot be too 'lonely' in my books, however the community workers I chatted with said they were prepared to bend the rules and give them the 'benefit of the doubt'.

We discussed doing something bigger and better next year - probably similar menu but invite more people! We are aiming to serve lunch to forty invited guests.


LindaG said...

That is a wonderful thing to do for older people.
Wish your grand kids a safe and pleasant visit.

Maria said...

What a glorious way for you to give back!