Peace Christmas Hearth

Oh, Christmas…

For all the joy and magic of this festive season, there’s no doubt that Christmas brings with it a good deal of extra work and things to do. There are the parties and visits to and from friends and family… Then there’s all that present planning and buying, wrapping and giving… There’s all that extra food shopping and cooking and baking… And on top of all that, there’s also a considerable seasonal serving of extra housework.

Now, before I get all Ebenezer on you, let me just stress that I am a huge fan of Christmas. I absolutely love it. I think I enjoy it even more now than I did when I was a child. Having two small children of my own definitely adds to the magic and sense of excitement and wonder, but even in the quiet moments of planning and organising, the Christmas season always makes me smile.

This is in spite of the extra work, though, rather than because of it.

So, in my attempt to get maximum enjoyment from the festivities with minimum amounts of stress and frantic frenzies, I have a few ideas for a Calmer Christmas Karma. These are lessons I’ve learnt about what makes for a happier time for all concerned – not least, myself. (And why not, Christmas is for grown-ups, too!)


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 girl put your records on

Any regular readers will no doubt be aware that I have a natural aversion to housework. This is not to say I don’t do it – I want to live in a pleasant and comforting home, so needs must etc… But generally speaking it’s not top of my list of things I want to do.

So you probably won’t be too surprised to discover that when I do eventually shift my gears into housework mode, I race about at a frenzied pace, trying to get the jobs done and dusted (literally) as quickly as possible.

Now there is nothing wrong with working quickly, if that’s how you work happiest. Also, there may be times when a brisk pace is essential (ie impending guests are looming). Quite often, though, I have no need to rush the housework, other than my in-built urge to get it over with. And I have also noticed that these domestic frenzies don’t leave me feeling satisfied and competent, instead they actually they wind me up. They make me anxious and tense. So not only do I begrudge the work as I’m tearing through it, but when it’s over, I feel slightly glum or more than a little snappish. Hardly domestic bliss.


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Could it be true? (again)

Now I am a self-confessed Undomestic Goddess. I am not naturally inclined to clean and tidy. I am a million miles away from the Perfect Housewife. And yet…

The other day, I had a few precious minutes of un-spoken-for time on my hands and what did I choose to do with it? Well, believe it or not, I actually went looking for some housework!

Admittedly, I didn’t have to look very far…but the point is, I was motivated to do housework. Now what strange magic was at work? What could this new driving force possibly be? What awesome power could be behind such a freak occurrence?

Well, the good news is, the answer is a simple one. The even better news is, you can quite easily get your hands on it, too!


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Let’s play Spot the Difference.

Woman A arrives home. She hangs up her coat, bag and keys. She looks around her tidy home, smiles and decides she’s got time to relax in her beautiful sitting room with a cuppa and a magazine.

A flustered Woman B heaves the door open, pushing aside the debris blocking the entrance. She throws her coat on the pile – one more won’t make a difference. As she enters the kitchen, her heart sinks at the sight. Then, though she is surrounded by a million chores that need doing, she collapses, overwhelmed and exhausted on the sofa. She emits a small yelp as the hard plastic toy digs into her back.

So, then. What’s the difference between these two women?


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The ‘Not Enough Hours In The Day’ Trilogy – Part I

Ever find that you just don’t have enough time for housework? Do you ever feel that the mountain of laundry is just unscale-able? That you need more hours in the day to get it all done? I’m guessing, by the fact that you’re here, you answered a resounding YES to all of the above.

And yet, never in the history of women, have we had so much assistance within the home. Imagine, only a few generations ago – whole days were devoted to laundry! These days, we balk at the effort of slamming our clothes into a machine for an hour – but when we return, they’re all clean! No fetching pails of water. No rubbing our knuckles raw on washing boards. No losing our fingers to menacing mangles. Compared to the efforts of our foremothers – modern laundry is a breeze.


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