I want to have a word with you, yes you, the one scrolling down through this on her iPhone whilst absent-mindedly working her way through the never ending ‘to do’ list in her head.
We all know Christmas is soon, and I know your thoughts are something along the lines of –
“…did I invite Auntie Lorna for drinks that weekend…I wonder if I can find that Stretchkins from somewhere else…how likely is it I could drop a stone before Christmas…what am I meant to do with that sodding elf tonight…when’s the last post to New Zealand…”
Stop. Be kind to yourself.
This is a busy and pretty hellish season. For the most of us that means we take the full brunt of organising every aspect of the ‘festive’ season, from booking the Christmas shopping slot to sending out a million Christmas cards, not to mention whipping up a nativity costume, and learning how to stuff a bird.
I’m here to tell you, stop.
You don’t need to be everything to everyone. What are you trying to achieve? Is it the most perfect Christmas ever? I can give a little spoiler on that, it will NEVER be the most perfect Christmas ever. Even if you do everything you possibly can, even if you lose that stone, win the lottery AND find that Stretchkins toy, it still won’t be perfect. Because there will always be something out of your control. That’s not to say it won’t be a lovely Christmas, and a fab day for all involved, but it will be that whether or not you reach the end of your ‘to do’ list.
For the most of us we’re aiming for brilliant Christmas memories for our children aren’t we?
So think back, what did you love the most about Christmas as a kid? For me the most magical, sparkly bit of Christmas was waking up in the morning to discover the pillowcase (yep, not a personalised hessian sack) had magically gained lumpy, bumpy contents. It was the sure fire demonstration that Father Christmas existed, but I was never bothered by how many things were in there. Just the very fact that Father Christmas had put some things in there was all that mattered.
My second favourite part of Christmas was opening the presents on my parents’ bed, with my sister. We’d both unwrap our presents, mum and dad would have a cup of tea, and we’d enjoy some festive biscuits (a total treat).
There are many, many other memories for me of Christmas, but none of them were the sheer volume of presents, or the amount of money my parents had spent. In fact, one of my most treasured possessions (still) is a ceramic Cinderella my mum bought from a table top sale one lean Christmas.
So stop, let the Elf on the F*cking Shelf jump into the bin all by himself.
Pour yourself a Baileys (it’s Christmas after all) and give yourself some time to revive.
Decide what’s most important for YOUR Christmas, and either ditch or take the shortcut on the other stuff.
Let’s face it, if you can’t cook the rest of the year, you’re not going to be Nigella come December 25. Go out for lunch. Or buy in something pre-done. If family is coming, share the burden. Get them to join in. And relax. Look around, be proud of your family (and you) and then it’ll be perfect.
Merry Christmas Snotties xx