As much as I love December I also find it one of the most stressful months of the year, mainly because there’s so much going on. Last year, for example, I organised the school Christmas fair, planned and hosted a friend’s baby shower, completed umpteenth work deadlines – on top of all the regular school festive admin / trips / plays, wrapping and card writing and present buying. By the time Christmas rolled around I was exhausted.
This year I’m taking a more laid back approach to December. I’m still busy – I’ve got a couple of exciting work projects on the go at the moment that I’ll share more of here once they’re all finalised – but I’ve become a lot better at protecting my boundaries when it comes to festive stress. I’m taking on less extra stuff this year and prioritising my family alongside my work, instead of spreading myself so thin I’m ready to snap.
So number one on my December happy list is probably “protected boundaries”, although that doesn’t feel like a tangible thing to put on a list.
Also on my happy list this month are all the Christmas films. I bloody love a festive film (Elf for the win) and really enjoyed the new offering from Netflix starring Kurt Russell. The Christmas Chronicles has everything you need from a Christmas film – laughter, magic and sentimentality. We watched it with Si’s parents and all three generations of the family enjoyed it.
Other things I’m loving this month are: this night owl duvet (pictured above) by the Fine Bedding Company – soft and cosy, it doubles up as a sofa duvet, a throw or a great spare duvet option for a guest room; these shearling chunky hiker boots by Boohoo (pictured below) – warm, comfortable and with a grungy feel, I’ve worn them pretty much every day since buying them; and this Botanics facial oil by Boots – put on last thing at night for a lovely bit of TLC for your face.
The biggest change in our house over the past two weeks has been the completed living room redecoration – we’ve totally transformed the room with newly painted walls, new flooring, new lighting, new rugs and cushions, new curtains and a newly revamped fireplace. I’ll do a before and after post if I get the time, but in the meantime check out my Instagram Stories if you’d like to see what it looks like!
As someone whose favourite show on TV as a kid was Changing Rooms, the space I live in has always been really important for me. Even when I had no budget, living as a student in a shared house, I gave up the last week of my uni holidays to go and paint my new bedroom with leftover paint donated by my parents, and make homemade candle holders out of empty jam jars. I feel like the home takes on an even more important quality at winter, when we go into hibernation mode during the short, dark months. So the new living room and nearly completed dining room are making me really happy at the moment.
Finally, I’ve found a new routine of work in the past couple of weeks and although I’m not sure it’s got legs forever, it’s working for now. I’ve been getting up at 5am to get a couple of hours work in before the kids wake up, which means my evening are free to do other stuff like see friends, wrap presents and chill out in front of some good TV. Again, I’m not saying it’s how I’ll work forever (I really like my sleep), but it’s working for now.
What’s made your happy list this month?