So, its finally here, the last build up to Christmas just a few days away… the stress and the excess of December with its Christmas parties, nativity plays, working hard to finish all tasks before taking a break, shopping, eating, drinking, singing and being merry… after all its Christmas.
This year I’ve asked my true love to give to me, a slow living Christmas. I’ll be sharing my 12 days of Christmas with a slow living twist for your most peaceful and meaningful Christmas ever.
Luckily, I only have 2 excited children, and in this day and age its more and more difficult to remind children the real importance and meaning of Christmas. They only have to watch a few toy adverts on TV or in my 2 teenagers’ case, flick through social media to be bombarded with images of material things and expense.
This time of year, is ideal to remind kids about the importance of a gift. Considering the thought that has gone into a gift and the act of kindness. We can easily share the joys of Christmas that I will share with you now with our children.
My simple joys of Christmas are waking up before everyone else on Christmas morning for coffee on my own before I hear excited footsteps from bedrooms. Taking the dog for a walk on Christmas morning feels different somehow with no cars on the road and very few people out and about. Although I don’t like gingerbread, I love gingerbread scented candles and melts and save them just for this time of year to enjoy that smell of Christmas to me. Unlike most people I also love wrapping gifts and since switching to eco friendly options it has allowed me to be much more creative with cinnamon sticks and dried orange slices added to brown paper.
I’m also using reusable fabric wraps this year for those special gifts and for shapes that are hard to wrap!
What are your simple joys? Find joy in the quiet not just the noise, lights and material possessions.
Allow your hands and mind to get lost in some Christmas crafts and makes. Make your own wreath or for something a little more simple get a make your own Christmas cracker kit like this plantable set of 6 here.
You could make mince pies instead of buying them this year or bake biscuits and cookies to enjoy with hot chocolate in the evenings.
Don’t let the cold put you off getting some fresh air. Talking a walk can give you some mental space and calm. Grab the family and wander around taking notice of the seasonal details and senses and admiring others decorations and lights. You could even forage for table settings, a sprig from a tree with ribbon makes a simple and effective cutlery holder, or fill a big flower vase with foliage such as leaves and pinecones for a centre piece. Add lights and some eco-friendly glitter for that little bit extra. Bring the outside in to really connect with the season and enjoy what’s unique about winter.
Dreaming of sleeping in or sitting by the fire with family with something warm to drink and sweet to eat? Do it! Make sure you spend this time resting, as the longer you rest, the deeper you relax to replenish your body and mind. No doubt it won’t be long till the next last-minute panic appears out of nowhere!
Take a few quiet moments with a lavender eye mask or a few drops of relaxing essential oil blend on an aromatherapy necklace means you can benefit from the relaxing scent wherever you are.
I was recently around some ladies and they started talking about the pressure to have the perfect Christmas tree after scrolling through social media and seeing picturesque displays of twinkling lights and colour co-ordinated decorations.
Now I’m no minimalist, we have decorations up including a plug-in fireplace ornament that is such a tradition that it symbolises to everyone who knows us that its officially Christmas. I honestly think I could just display the little fireplace with its flickering bulb and ceramic Santa with his sack and forget the tree and it would still feel just as festive.
The importance of Christmas is lost in the quest for perfection.
And that right there is what I want to focus on, the magic of Christmas in our home with my family. Soaking up those special memories that we can all agree, when we look back, are never about the gifts.
Add these baubles to your tree that include holistic gifts from Empathy Holistics. They contain either a Calming down oil, Uplifting hand cream (using festive spices) or Festive (clay based) face mask.
I run an online business so I’m guilty of being on my phone quite a lot but over this year I have become more mindful about how and when I use my phone and Christmas will be no exception. In fact, I’ll be imposing a house rule on phones over the Christmas period so we can really savour what’s in front of us.
The meaning and purpose of Christmas of goodwill and giving has been overshadowed by greed, excess and stress. It doesn’t have to be this way. Sit and reflect on what you actually believe Christmas to be about. I’m sure you’ll discover some new family traditions no matter how big or small in no time. Take some home baking or sweet treats to your local fire station, they, amongst others, will be working Christmas Day.
Before filling your online or physical basket with gifts ask yourself these 4 questions:
I know my sister wants and would use vegan and eco-friendly eyelash extensions from LovOnLash.
My mum loves a bath so a Bath Time Deluxe soap bar is perfect!
My husband has a stressful commute to work every day so I’m giving him this reusable car freshener that uses essential oils to keep things calm in traffic jams and long drives.
My nephews would use reusable silicone straws with handy carry tin to throw into their football bags.
Little ones will get a lot of use out of these natural crayons that can also be personalised.
I love to give, its my favourite part of Christmas watching someone open something I’ve found with them in mind. The more people you have to buy for, the more stressful it can be. Creating a new tradition of family secret Santa or agreeing on a budget means there is much more thought in gift giving rather than cost.
Make a treasure hunt of gifts with these fun cards made by Mucky Knees Boutique. Perfect for a new familt tradition as they can be reused every year and stored in a handy tin.
Personally, I have a pile of books I’ve bought over the last year or two to read “when I have time”. Christmas is the perfect time! No normal routines or work stresses it’s the perfect opportunity to snuggle with a blanket and a (gingerbread) scented candle and finally open page 1 of that book that’s been staring at you since June!
For a new christmas story for little ears take a look at Billy the Blackbird & The Winter Feast.
This exciting, winter story includes instructions how to make a winter bird feeder and free downloadable colouring-in sheet.
Available in Paperback, Hardback and a Gift Pack of both Billy the Blackbird books.
We need to look after the environment so our wildlife friends like Billy can stay safe, that’s why these books are printed on recycled paper and packaging is 100% plastic free.
And a slow living Christmas for me….
Wishing you a very merry Christmas, whatever that means to you and your family.
Stay Safe and Well,
Love, Light and Green Vibes,