CHRISTMAS Eve is upon us and each of us, in our own way, is gearing up for the big day.
Kitchens across West Yorkshire will be a hive of activity today and tomorrow morning as turkeys are defrosted, potatoes peeled and the all-important Christmas dinner made ready.
There will be some stress and hard work involved, that goes without saying.
But it is to be hoped that the result is a memorable day enjoyed by all.
And if things do get on top of you as the final preparations get underway, it may be beneficial to think of Pam Clarkson.
She is the 71-year-old who has volunteered to make sure pensioners in Rothwell have a taste of Christmas.
A team of fellow volunteers will help her serve and clear up, but it is Pam who's in charge of the shopping, cooking and gift-buying for the 93 elderly guests who are looking forward to a five-course meal.
Compared to our own efforts, Pam's is positively herculean.
Her dedication embodies the true spirit of Christmas as a time for caring and sharing.
AMID the chaos of icy roads and ungritted pavements, a mystery mower goes to work.
That's right - with the city shivering in sub-zero temperatures and the ground frozen solid, the grass cutters have been out once again.
This is now becoming an annual winter pantomime.
And the joke would be quite funny, were it not for the fact that we're probably the ones whose taxes are paying for workers to attempt to trim grass that hasn't grown in at least a month.
We're not sure whose idea it is, but the extraordinary thing is that it keeps happening.
You really would have thought by now that everyone would have twigged that this is an exercise in futility, one that paints them as hopeless incompetents.
Perhaps 2011 will be the year they surprise us by not doing anything quite so daft.
A special day
THIS time last year Gabrysia Filarowski was seriously ill with a sickness bug that followed a lifesaving heart operation.
But this year the toddler cannot wait for her first proper Christmas.
She has already paid a visit to see Father Christmas, now she's looking forward to unwrapping the presents he brings her.
Tomorrow won't just be a big day for Gabrysia, of course, it's also sure to be full of memorable moments for her parents Andrew and Angela.
It looks like being a magical Christmas for Gabrysia and her family - and we hope it is for you too.
We wish all our readers a very merry Christmas.