Treat Tuesday

I saw this picture:


It’s pretty much how I would love to decorate the log cabin I don’t yet have.  It made me feel all snug and warm and wintery which in turn made me feel really christmassy.

I know Christmas can be a really hard time for some people – but it shouldn’t be about the commericialism or anyone feeling lonely – it should be about good will and cheer!

Say hello to people – dare to smile – if you know someone is lonely – pop round with a mince pie for them.  Surround yourself with your loved ones – if you don’t have the money to buy them gifts then make something for them, or write them something lovely, do some chores for them – there is always something meaningful that can be done!

So my message today for Treat Tuesday is to treat someone else for a change ;o)

I also wrote a little story inspired by the picture above – I write for children but hey, I think everyone should keep in touch with their inner Peter Pan complex.

It was the night before Christmas, there wasn’t a sound in the house – the only movement was that out of the corner of your eye of the treelights flickering on and then off again – casting a soft candle like glow around the room, little halo’s of light surrounding the bulbs.  There were some embers in the grate, not doing justice to the magnificent fire that had been roaring in the fireplace moments earlier.  The dancing flames now lying low about to gasp their last breath of oxygen before giving up.  Warmth could still be felt around the house, the wooden floor not yet cold, but the draft was snaking in from under the doors, creeping around the ankles of small children unable to sleep.  The promise of Santa coming was too great.  He’d been a good boy all year, well, give or take the odd moment of throwing his toys, hitting his little sister, but overall Benji felt he had done more than enough to justify a visit from Santa.  And now that he was 5 years old he felt he was old enough to meet Santa too, so he could say thank you for his presents properly.   He’d even told Arlo, his sister, that he was going to meet Santa.  She was 3, and he’d been quite thankful that she’d not been able to stay awake a moment longer than when her head hit the pillow.  He had to wait 5 years to meet Santa, there was no way Arlo was going to meet him so soon.  Benji waited…..and waited.  He felt pain in his chest and started to panic, then he realised he was holding his breath.  He blew out his cheeks with a giggle, quickly clamping his hand over his mouth in case his Father was to hear.  He paused, but there was no sound.  The fire gave one last crack and the orange was no more.  Benji looked around and saw his blanky on the sofa, he picked it up and wrapped it around his shoulders and pulled his feet in close to his body to keep warm.  He waited and then he waited some more.  He crept over to the Christmas tree, careful not to disturb anything; he pulled the plug on the lights.   He didn’t want Santa thinking anyone was awake. He huddled back into himself and waited.  He tried not to stare at the chimney as he remembered his mom saying something about pots and watching and things not happening but he couldn’t help but to peep now and then; but all seemed still.  He counted to ten.  Then twenty.  Then he started again as he wasn’t sure how to go past his fingers and toes.  He did this 3 more times and then he got bored.  He picked himself up off the floor and walked to the back door. He peered out of the glass window, he squinted, he jumped at the sight of a boy – but realised it was just his face looking back at him, screwed up in concentration.  He thought he could see footprints in the snow laid out on the back garden but he couldn’t be sure.  He slowly tried the door handle but the door was locked.  He tried to peep through the keyhole but he could see nothing but darkness stretching out before him.  He didn’t like the dark so he crept back into the lounge and put the fairy lights on again.  With a sigh he curled up on the sofa.  Where was Santa!!!

He woke up with a jump and quickly looked around.  How long had he been asleep? It was still dark, did that mean it was still night time? He saw something sparkle and rubbing his sleep filled eyes he saw it was a ribbon.  A ribbon attached to a bright shiny parcel.  His heart soared and he scrabbled over to see if it was for him.  It was!!! He jumped up and down and span round.  Just as it was dawning on Benji that this must mean he’d missed Santa after all he saw a pair of brown boots.  He stared at the boots for a moment, he didn’t remember his Dad having any like those.  He let his eyes move slowly upwards and saw big gold shiny buckles at the top of the boots, he let his eyes wonder a little further and he saw white fur.  He could hold the excitement in no more.  He exploded from his spot with all the energy he had.  ‘SANTA!’ he called and threw his arms around the legs in front of him.  Santa was tall, he could reach no further up him.  He looked up and saw a giant red clothed belly bobbing up and down with a ‘Ho Ho Ho!’ Followed by ‘Little boys should be tucked up in bed by now…..especially little boys called Benji.’  For a moment Benji froze, scared, but he felt the belly still moving with a ‘Ho Ho Ho!’

‘Now young man, I have lots to do, so let me help you up to your room then I’ll be back if you promise to go to sleep.’ Santa said with a wink.

Benji just nodded in awe, too happy and slightly worried the little shiny parcel on the floor would be all he would be getting.  He went to swipe it up, just in case, but he felt his feet leaving the ground, up and up he went until he was eye level with a huge fluffy beard.  On instinct, without a thought Benji tugged, gently.  The beard did not move.  He let himself be carried up the stairs and put to bed.  Santa stroked Benji’s head.  ‘Happy Christmas young Benji…now go to sleep.’

‘How do you know my name?’

‘I know all the children Benji.  Now keep quiet so you don’t wake Arlo.’ and with a sprinkle of glitter Santa was gone and Benji was counting sheep.

Hours later Benji awoke to hear his family downstairs, he ran down and saw the little parcel plus many, many more.  In the distance he could hear ‘Ho Ho Ho.’

‘Mom, Dad…’ll never guess what happened to me last night………’

And we leave them there.   Sat around a now roaring fire, treelights still sparkling away, and one happy family full of love, good cheer and a few too many Christmas sweets, and one little boy telling the tale of when he met Santa…………


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