Tuesday, 22 December 2015


And just like that, the holidays began...

It was a whirlwind weekend; tutoring, birthday parties, event organising, and three Carol services were no small feat. On Friday night, I sat on the sofa, cup of tea on one side, my diary on the other, looking out at a pile of clean washing that needed to be put away, at clothes hung over radiators and dryers, noticing piles of paper here and there, and toyboxes overflowing with toys, belonging to children who really don't need any more.

And I sat there, staring at my diary, I realised I was juggling a mental to-do list as long as my arm... Christmas cards to write, presents still to be bought, cookies to be baked, events to organise and children who need fed, clothed and cared for, regardless of how busy the season is.

Oh, and a baby who's weaning... Did I mention that?!

And as all these thoughts were buzzing round my head, a still small voice is reminding me that this is not what Christmas is all about... It's not meant to be about stress, and clutter and stuff.

It's meant to be uncluttered, simple... and peaceful. A simple rememberance of the stripped back arrival of our Saviour, born in a cowshed.

The arrival of Peace on Earth.

And so I decided that I wasn't going to let the stress get on top of me. It was time to destress, unclutter, relax.... Not take on any more. And enjoy the real reason for the season...

So stripped back, simple living began yesterday....

A mountain of bible puzzle books to be made up...

And lots of lovely little Christmas "Pixi books" to be read...

And of course, plenty of sleeping "in heavenly peace"...

With three days to go, we still have plenty to do... But as I've sought to tick things of my list, it's helpful to always hold the perspective of the real meaning of Christmas in my mind.

The best gift you'll ever receive
Is a baby born on Christmas Eve
Wrapped in a manger, parcelled in hay
Was the baby boy called Jesus.
- Clarina's Contemplations, 2009 -


  1. A lovely reminder Claire. I have to check myself every day that I'm not caving into the commercial frenzy that Christmas can become. Have a wonderful family Christmas. x x

  2. What a lovely verse as a reminder of what really matters - have a wonderful first Christmas as a five!


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