Every year I vow I’ll be different.
And every year I reach this point in time and my head could, literally, spin off with stress!
Ironically, last week saw me chatting on the radio, sharing some research about how women do WAY too much at Christmas. No kidding! It showed that women underestimate how much they do, when in reality they generally do three times as much as their partners whilst gents tend to over-estimate how much they actually do in the festive season. Surely not?! *innocent face
Last week my stress levels were through the roof. I just felt like I was juggling too many things and ended up bursting into tears on my lovely school Secretary (sorry Mrs D) who, I can now confirm, gives the best hugs! And as a mum herself, I”m guessing knew where I was coming from.
This time of year, the media is full of images of how life SHOULD be. And I often exhaust myself, trying to create the magical perfection for everyone around me. Don’t get me wrong – I adore Christmas but I just need to pace myself.
So appearing on This Morning and talking last minute Nativity Costume ideas for busy (and panicked) parents seemed strangely appropriate!
I hope my ideas helped! My fave was possibly the best home-made angel wings you will ever see or, hopefully, make using cupcake cases! We also had Mary and Joseph rocking pillow case costumes and sandwich board Christmas Trees (with lights) and Stars. I was in my element as a Christmas Fairy Godmother, helping stressed parents – and hope it helped a few nativities go a bit more smoothly!
I also happened to bump into Jake Quickenden – much to my mates dismay!
Back home and it was time to bust out my inner Nigella and attempt Gingerbread with the kids. I know – Gingerbread – possibly the world’s easiest recipe. Except that I’ve never made it from scratch so had my heart in my mouth as the kids measured and mixed! But they turned out great although now Akira is so attached to the family he made, he’s refusing to eat them! Not entirely sure how far into 2015 he’s expecting me to keep them!
Then, at the weekend, it was Christingle time. Five years in with Kaya and I’ve learnt the hard way that if you want a ringside seat (and to beat the mummy maffia…shh!) you need to get your cheeks on that wood EARLY! And so I did – an hour early was apparently what it took – and my front row pew (*smug face) ) gave me a great view of the best nativity Sheep there has ever been – ever! At least it was a great view until they started singing and then everything went a bit misty.
Akira is SO like I was as a kid – painfully shy and not loving being up in front of everyone. But he did great. And I’ve now had to acknowledge that my days of watching my kids dressed up in pillow cases and tinsel, are behind me as only Foundation dress up. *sobs
Stressful week aside, I know by the time the kids break up on Friday I’ll be pretty much ready.
I saw the simplest word play on Facebook this week, which was a timely reminder for my ridiculous feelings of being overwhelmed and having too much to do:
Buy Presents BE PRESENT
And that’s it. Simple! No point in being so stressed out you almost feel like you’re having an out-of-body experience this Christmas! Being present and in the moment with your family and loved ones is THE most important thing.