penny in a castle

A digital chapbook.


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Today I opened the last door of my advent calendar and found…a quiet moment.

I live in the middle of a three ring circus.  Sometimes figuratively, but mostly literally.  It can be a lot of fun, but it can also be fraying.

This is never so true as in the lead up to the main event – Christmas.  Everyone knows this when they have kids. And while it is all so much fun to go visit Santa at the mall, sing carols, wrap presents, decorate the tree, make crafts, bake, watch Christmas specials and movies, stay up late, eat all the wrong things, and…at some point everyone hits a manic moment and a child and/or a parent goes off the deep end. It’s never fun and one of the key reasons that Parent of the Year award still eludes me.

We’ve actually done fairly well this year.  The kids are getting older. I’ve made a conscious effort not to let the crazy get too out of control.  But it’s still a tough balance to maintain.  And I want the kids to still feel that magic.  So on the spectrum today I had one kid that felt a bit blue because today seemed like “any other day” and said she wished she had more that “bouncy feeling” of Christmas.  And on the other I had a child losing his mind and having a complete melt down because he had maybe a little too much sugar, too little sleep, and maybe an overdose of that “bouncy feeling.” Sigh.

So tonight, our little circus headed over to church for evening service.  It is one of my favourite moments of the season.  Each year, the Christ candle is brought out from the Advent wreath and lit.  And from it, all the other candles in the church are ignited.  Each year I am reminded, one candle can make a difference, many candles together can light the way.  And every year I am amazed – my children stand still, utterly silent as they are allowed to hold their little flame.  All is quiet for a few minutes.  Peace on earth. (Or at least on my own little planet).

The other thing I find remarkable – all these years of giving many children candles at the same time and we have yet to burn down the church.   It’s a miracle in itself. (Although admittedly this year, my youngest tried to light a battery operated candle he found with a real candle.  It broke my moment pretty quickly).

Later after service, my husband and I sat together for a few minutes admiring the lights on the Christmas tree.  Again, I was given the gift of a quiet moment.  You could hear the silence of the world as it slowed down.

Tomorrow, as Christmas arrives at full speed, I will remember today and its quiet moments.  (I’m probably going to need them).

Merry Christmas. I wish you all a moment of quiet.


Written by pennyinacastle

December 25, 2014 at 4:57 am

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