Pausing between special events

Helen Redfern | A Bookish Baker

Have you got your tree up yet?

How many times have you been asked that in the last week? Or, what about: have you got all your shopping done? No. No I haven’t. And no, I haven’t left it too late.

It’s only the seventh day of December. We are still, officially, in autumn. And I’ve still got pumpkins on the windowsill.

What is it with this trend to rush from one annual event to the next with no slow moments in between? As soon as the halloween decorations were put away people were saying, right, it’s Christmas now. Let’s get the fairy lights up. Let’s get our trees up.

And no disrespect to you if you’re one of them. I’m not dictating any rules here.

But me? I just want to pause for a while between these special events. I don’t want one to merge into the other. I want the slow moments. The in between times to just be. To watch as the last autumnal leaves fall to the ground. To savour the seasonal shifts. To anticipate the festive season but to not peak too soon.

How often do you also hear, hasn’t the year gone fast?

Is it any wonder when we’re going from Christmas, New Year, Summer, Halloween back to Christmas again. We’re always looking to the next big event. Regular days get brushed aside. Ignored.

But the regular days are the magic days. The regular days are the days you work towards your goals. Inch by inch. Step by step. Little victories. Small wins. Big wins.

Since September I have been working flat out on my writing business. I’ve created a book club on Instagram. I’ve started vlogging my writing and creative week - first on IGTV and now on YouTube. I’ve also been creating weekly videos about cosy creative living - for example my favourite books or a tour of my office. I’ve set up a Patreon account in order to write regular essays for my patrons. As well as writing three times a week on my blog and inching forward with my novel.

All this whilst taking on a new puppy. Whilst struggling with tooth pain. Whilst missing my boy when he went on an adventure of a lifetime then arrived home with campylobacter. Whilst celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, sports wins, sports losses, sorting GCSE prep, making decisions, some small, some really big, whilst packing school bags, whilst nagging about homework, whilst celebrating a mention in a magazine, or feeling sad about the loss of chickens…

It’s been an amazing few months. I started September working in the kitchen with the puppy and gradually made my way back into my tidied and re-energised office. I’ve written about 45 blog posts, one essay, created 13 vlogs, recorded and edited about 8 videos, numerous Instagram photographs and not as much novel writing as I‘d have liked but I made progress.

So now I’m winding down. I’m going to spend the next couple of weeks sorting the house, walking the dogs, wrapping presents, putting up the tree, having coffee with friends, preparing Christmas food, attending carol service, ice-skating (watching NOT partaking), dinner with friends, hosting my family, reading, watching TV and eating.

I made a big plan for this month but I just can’t do it. The creative well has run dry. So it’s now time to re-fill. There might be other blog posts on here between now and the new year but I won’t be sticking to a schedule. And my vlogs will come back in January. Rested, refreshed and ready to tackle the next three months of my writing and online creativity business.

Before I go I want to say a big thank you. Thank you for reading my blog this year. Thank you for your comments, for following me on Instagram and subscribing to my channel on YouTube. Thank you for becoming my patron and thank you for your support. Any support - big and small. It has all meant so much.

Merry Christmas.

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