Act of kindness #35: A Santa hat of festive treats

Having seen how busy the city is getting with Christmas Day so close, I thought I’d channel Santa’s Little Helper and do an act of kindness to show some of the hardworking people who help us with our Christmas shopping and serve us our festive refreshments, a little love and gratitude.

I bought a few chocolate bars and attached a Kindness Card to each with the message: You are doing a GREAT job – and if you ever forget that, please read this again”. And I popped them all inside a Santa Hat.

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As I ventured into the city this week, once to go to my Mindfulness Course and once to go  to my Cranial-Osteo appointment, I took the opportunity to offer harassed-looking shop staff and run-off-their-feet cafe workers a dip into the Santa Hat to pick out a festive treat.

My absolutely favourite response was at stationery shop Paperchase: the two girls were heads down, working diligently to serve the very long queue of lunchtime shoppers and when it got to my turn, I couldn’t wait to offer them the Santa Hat.

When each saw their sweet treat and kindness message, they both looked up and broke out into the biggest smiles – it made me so happy to see their reaction.  I left the shop with us wishing each other a Merry Christmas with huge grins on our faces and feeling all warm and fuzzy inside.

It was a similar reaction by the staff at the city’s main library, and with my last festive treat at the ready,  I nipped into the health shop to pick up some Apple Cider Vinegar. But before I could give the friendly assistant a festive treat, she kindly gave me a box of yummy Ginger Tea as a festive thank you for my custom!

Big smiles all around.

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Merry Christmas!

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

And at this most magical time, I would like to say thank you.

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Thank you for all your support this year, it means so much to me. I’m especially grateful to everyone who subscribes, letting me pop up in your inboxes every now and again.

Thank you for your comments. Reading your kind words always puts a huge smile on my face, boosts my spirits, and inspires me to keep going especially when my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms have flared up and I’m feeling really rubbish.

And last but definitely not least, a HUGE thank you to to everyone who’s joined in with my Kindness Advent Calendar this year and has been spreading a little more kindness throughout December.  You really are AMAZING and I’m so excited that together we are making the world a kinder place.

Wishing you all a wonderfully magical Christmas and a brand new year filled with all that you wish for, and so much more.

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Festive love+hugs, Helen Xxx

 

Day 88: Christmas carols

Being grateful for a carol service for putting me in the Christmas spirit:

After weeks of being stuck inside as I recover from my relapse, it’s no surprise I’ve been feeling a little stir crazy. Needing to get out is also a good sign that I’m on the mend.

And I really want to soak up some festive cheer.

With today being the last clear day before Christmas Day (we have my nephews here the next couple of days) I discovered that a carol service was on at 1pm at my favourite church in the city.

And I couldn’t think of anything more perfect for capturing the magical spirit of Christmas.

I just love the architecture and stunning interior of St Mary’s Church: it’s the city’s oldest parish, dating back to 1377, and is even mentioned in the Doomsday Book. Even though it’s undergoing a major refurbishment at the moment, it was still a treat to go inside.

St Mary's church exterior

I was feeling a little apprehensive about going all the way into the city, as my energy levels are still so low. But as my lovely mum was joining me, I felt safe knowing that if I didn’t feel well I could get home ok.

Before the service began, we had time to brave the cold winds and heavy rain to have a little potter around the Christmas Market on the main square, watch the skaters on the outdoor ice rink, and have a festive bite to eat (which was also quite brave of us!).

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We got to the church early and as it filled up, I took the time to have a meditation break.

The service began with the Nottingham Girls’ High School Junior Choir, and the haunting beauty of their harmonising voices brought tears to my eyes.

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The service included traditional readings, more moving musical pieces from the young choir, and we all joined in for the festive favourites: O, Come All Ye Faithful; Once in Royal David’s City; Silent Night; O Little town of Bethlehem; and Hark, the Herald-Angels Sing.

Order of service

Although the key was way too high for my vocal chords (why do they do that?) and I found it a tad difficult to sing my heart out, I did my very best and thoroughly enjoyed it. And I got tingles at the soaring voices of the choral members dotted around the congregation.

It was a beautiful, touching, magical, moving, and inspirational service – all rolled into one.

Now I’m feeling fabulously festive. Bring on Christmas!

So with this in mind, my happy for today is being grateful for a carol service for putting me in the Christmas spirit.