Ever wondered why we have a ‘yule log’ chocolate cake at Christmas? The winter solstice is also known as Yule, traditionally a pagan festival of the shortest day & celebration of longer days to come. The yule log was the log that lit the fire which was to burn continually for 12 days and nights through the season. I love a good chocolate cake and you can’t beat a front room warmed by fire in winter, so what a great combination!
I don’t know if Christmas evolved from Pagans, if Hanukkah pre-dates Christianity, if Romans decided the date we still celebrate or if that debate really matters to be honest. For me, the point is that winter is natural a time of calmness and reflection, which means it s a good time to be thoughtful, kind and community minded.
I remember stories from my childhood of St Nicholas being a kind old man who visited children in the night leaving gifts for those who had good souls. Candles may represent light, but they are also very pretty and incredibly practical on these dark days, as is decorating our houses with ever-green foliage to brighten things up.
I love the essence of Christmas Carols. Lots of lyrics about love and joy, the merriment of birth, the winter season, and mystical goings on. But most of all, I embrace the opportunity to smile at strangers without seeming like a mad lady, I welcome the season where I can engage in random acts of kindness without someone thinking I have an agenda. Most of all, I feel grounded as I reflect on the positives from the previous years, the lessons I’ve learnt, the kind relatives and unconditional love I’ve been blessed with.
I love Reflexology because not only does it have the ability to help a body to heal, but it is so deeply relaxing and encourages us to just stop for an hour or so – like winter, it encourages us to turn our brains off and slow down. How illogical that we spend the weeks leading up to Christmas running around like mad things, when what really matters is the quality of time we spend with others, the thought we put into sharing, and the recognition we give ourselves that we survived another year and we are doing alright.
Take care & enjoy