Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to my friends and followers across the globe!
I know this time of year is super busy with gifts to buy, food to plan, parties to attend and the general cosy social aspects of your holiday time. It certainly is busy in this house.
With three children, limited funds and a whole host of to-dos… I am slowly getting through them, including website updates (links to my podcasts across numerous platforms and a new shop!) coursework, a huge booklist – as a writer, I rarely get time to read so have made reading a new self-care priority. Not just this, but managing the needs of my youngest son who is autistic – meaning less sleep, deep breaths and working his needs out when he cannot communicate them has of late, been a lot. Still, I wouldn’t change him for the world- he is too intelligent but is becoming aware of how popular his older brother is and that must be hard for a boy who seriously struggles socially and emotionally like that of a two-year-old.
I have also been facing the trials and tribulations of a 13-year-old girl and the intensity of a six-year-old. But for the most part, Christmas is sorted. Presents bought and wrapped, tree erected at an appropriate time, house cleared out ready to refill. Reorganised and even my tech has had a re-organisation.
Every year, around this time, I also try to give back. Even if I, myself, do not have much because this time of year is very hard for the people who have less – with kids eager for the big day, parents counting their pennies and others that have seriously struggled under this current government.
This year, we decided to donate directly to a food bank that covers both Valleys. So I did a weeks shop, including treats of course, and dropped them over. I spoke to the man that ran it, sharing stories and learned some interesting facts. 80% of donations go to people on Universal Credit. Over 2 tonnes (and rising) is donated to people in need. People turn up in bits – devastated and ashamed to be in that position. But my message to them is: Do not be ashamed. I and many others wish that we could do more. As long as you and yours are fed, you are doing what you can.
My ask to you, my audience, is simple: Think of one thing that you can do for someone else, and in the spirit of the holidays, make someone’s day better. Do it selflessly. If you like, like I chose to do, do it anonymously. But look at what you have and be thankful. Remember that it does not take much to fall on hard times and celebrate with love in your heart.
I wish you well; love, cheer and a wonderful holiday season.