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Nothing else matters

What is it about November that sees life turned up to eleven? Literally. Once that October page flips over, life suddenly becomes more manic as it hurtles towards the looming deadline of Christmas. Let's face it, midsummer is such a crap time for Christmas, it must be the busiest season of the year.

It makes much more sense, in the relative quiet of winter, to retreat indoors, make some gifts and gather family and friends around for a slap up feast (I know, I do say that often).

Alas, not here in the southern hemisphere. In the garden it's busy - planting, weeding watering, then there's end of school activities, excursions, fairs and concerts with costumes to sew. Throw a seventh birthday party to organise and a couple of market stalls into the mix, and I can feel a knot the size of a small car developing in the pit of my stomach.

And of course, as we're hosting the family for yuletide festivities, there's the house to get shipshape. According to the Inside Out magazine's 8-week Christmas Countdown plan, by now, that's week 7 - November 8, I should have;
::arranged tradespeople to finish off any small jobs,
::booked a professional house cleaner,
::made holiday arrangements for pets, (Where would you like to go this year chooks? Tahiti?)
::ordered now for any online christmas shopping,
::inspected outdoor lighting and adjusted or augmented as required,
::bought gift wrapping, ribbon, cards and tags,
::booked a session with a stylist for my own Christmas makeover, and
::sorted out bedding for visited relatives

O-kaay, now that knot is starting to feel like the battle ship Potemkin.

But then my little guy, how I cherish my children's ability to live in the moment and remind me to do the same. This morning, as I thought to tackle my list of chores, my little one asked for a hug. Then just one more. Then just one more. Then just one more. And I close my eyes, nuzzle his neck and breathe. Deeply.

And nothing else matters. I don't care about augmenting the outdoor lighting as required. I spend the day playing with Hugo. Building lego, racing cars, having tea parties. Because, today nothing else does matter. And then, thankfully, that battleship Potemkin feeling, just sails away.


  1. Thank God your secret weapon is a smile ... you need one with that list.

    But you've reminded me I really need to book someone to do a few odd jobs for me.

  2. What a beautiful post. It's so true. I've been freaking out lately too - so many things to get done. I think I'm going to take a leaf out of your good book! :) K

  3. thank god for the kiddies!! So in that list did it say you had to have your lippy perfect at every moment, your nails done and your hair standing on end from to much cedal hairspray!!! I'll let you in on a is NOT like that around here!!!

  4. well you are definitely ahead of me because i haven't even got the list. apparently i must hit the newstand if i want to see christmas standing up this year. YIKES!

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  6. Gorgeous post! I think without my kiddies to nuzzle and pour me glasses of sandy tea this week I would have ended up with a nervous breakdown. We don't even do christmas and I am struggling with the hype that accompanies this time of year so I have no idea how you add that into it as well. I hope you get to tick lots of things off your list.
    ps your chookens can come to Daylesford for a holiday?!

  7. Oops!
    What I meant to say was: I loved this post. A calm moment of clarity amongst the self imposed & unrealistic hurdles of christmas.
    I know what you mean about that intoxicating smell of your own kids & breathing it in. If someone bottled it they'd be a gazillionaire overnight!

  8. When you book the tickets for your chooks to go to Tahiti, can you add another as my dog would love to get away for the holidays too!
    What a great list! I am way unprepared if I really have to do all that! hahahahahaha
    I think I can manage to make the best of my Christmas even if I don't get all that done!

  9. I know how you feel. I have a few markets coming up as well, plus the garden groweth over, Christmas lists, parcels to post and I have had to prioritise the kids Christmas play over the Dalai Lama (which is a shame, but a no brainer - kids singing Christmas Carols win).

    So best thing to do is stop and breathe! Hug the kids and head to the beach... all things will be resolved in the passage of time...

  10. So true! Keep cuddling that gorgeous boy and playing and having fun & loving each other. These are the things that matter. It's been lovely to read your blog tonight, somehow you fell off my radar so I'm glad to have you officially back in my world. Sweet photo xo

  11. A lovely post.

    I'm happily in self-denial about Christmas and just trying to get the garden sort-of sorted (spreading that straw around is very satisfying).

    I'm so pleased I decided not to do anymore markets this year, and so pleased you will be (eating cupcakes is fairly high on my to-do list right now)

  12. Great post. Sometimes without realising it, we get caught up in what other people think we should be doing, and how we should be preparing. Would the special people you are sharing christmas with really care about all that stuff? I'm guessing not. Then why should you. Hugs and cars and tea parties are way more fun. And create longer lasting memories than a clean house.

  13. I'm not sure where Inside Out was coming from publishing that list Michelle, but shame on them! I'm feeling soooo inadequate & an abject organizational Festive Season failure. Our Chrissie house guest numbers are growing by the hour & with only one loo still, maybe I should ring the Stylist they recommend & ask their advice about how to put a rocket up MOTH. Maybe I should ask them for a cuddle at the same time! Or just borrow your gorgeous little one for a moment or two.
    Millie ^_^

  14. Wonderful post - thanks for the reminder to remember what's truly important!