I vividly remember setting about to write to Father Christmas, asking for a He-man ‘Castle Greyskull’, only to be stopped in my tracks. Our chubby benefactor would never stretch to such a costly gift, I was informed. Fair enough, I thought and asked for a cheaper option. So imagine my shock when I discovered that friends of mine had received ‘Castle Greyskull’ from Santa. Where had I gone wrong?Read More The ‘Naughty List’ isn’t nice!
It’s not only Santa who’s in a giving mood at this time of year.
Here are my hacks to make Christmas (almost) bearable. You can thank me later.Read More 5 FESTIVE HACKS, TO GET YOU THROUGH CHRISTMAS
If Christmas didn’t exist, we’d need to invent it.
It’s no coincidence that the feast lies at the darkest part of the year, literally ‘in the bleak mid-winter’. A time when we need something to look forward to, a pick-me-up. Pre-Christian society understood this, with their ‘Yuletide’ winter solstice celebrations, which were neatly ‘re skinned’ (using a modern parlance) by early Christianity with the familiar Bethlehem-based narrative. The story changed, but the heart of the feast remained the same – communities coming together to celebrate, during the bleakest of seasons.
The mid-winter oasis of the ‘festive season’ was, for generations, the exclusive territory of religion. But things change, meaning evolves and time moves on. We know, of course, that the ‘holidays’ so movingly crooned of in the Cola commercial are a contraction of the Christian ‘holy days’. Yet the word no longer has an ecclesiastical connotation. The same might be said of ‘Christmas’ itself – an abbreviation of ‘Christ’s Mass’, which (I feel) wouldn’t be the primary definition for most. Like ‘holiday’, the word has new common meaning: a festive period of goodwill and joviality. There are new myths and traditions too, with John Lewis and Coca Cola at the heart of these, here in this country.
I wish those who choose to celebrate the religious during this festive time well. They do not, however, have a monopoly on ‘the true meaning of Christmas’.Read More CHRISTMAS HAS BEEN REBRANDED
In a former life, long before In The Night Garden marathons and synchronized bacon sandwich and Peppa Pig viewing sessions, I used to have a responsible job where people listened to and acted upon what I said. These days I find myself in the centre aisle of the Co-op pleading with my son to stop crying because I won’t buy him a full-sized carpet cleaning system.
Yes, that happened.
I conclude that parenting is like being on a swing. There are highs and lows. Yet, it’s important (even if you’re tempted) to avoid going over the top.Read More Showboating parents (please) give it a rest!