It's finally December and the Christmas stories can commence! It's my favourite time of year and I'm so excited to share some brand new festive stories with you all. I hope you enjoy this one, which was inspired by reminiscing over the above Christmas gig outfit!
To listen to this as a festive podcast, just click here!
The Littlest Angel
It had been a long year and the Christmas decorations were getting impatient, as they began to wake from their sleep. The shiny baubles bumped into one another as they rolled around their box. The reindeer, with their flashing noses, were desperate to stretch their gangly legs. The fluffy Santas that went "ho, ho, ho" when you pressed their tummies, waddled around the attic, waiting excitedly for the hatch to open and the time to finally come when they'd be taken downstairs and put up for all to see, once more.
"I wonder what the tree will be like, this year," the sparkling glass snowman said, wrinkling his carrot nose. "Do you think it'll be a real one again?"
The woolly Christmas pudding decoration sighed. "Last year, that real tree left pine needles all over me," she grumbled. "I like a real tree, but I hope it's a bit comfier, this year."
Everyone chattered and giggled, as they waited for their big moment to arrive. Everyone, that is, except for one little angel. The littlest angel in the box. She lay quietly, right at the bottom, not wanting to get her hopes up. You see, the littlest angel had a big dream...
...She had always wanted to be placed right at the top of the Christmas tree. She wanted to sit proudly, watching over everyone as they opened their presents, ate their special dinner and played party games. She wanted to feel important. But she didn't think she was.
Every year, the family placed an enormous angel, with glittering gold wings, at the top of their tree. It was a nice angel - a beautiful angel - but the littlest angel wished that she could switch places with her, just once. She knew it would never happen, though. The family loved their big angel. They even had a name for her: Angelica. The littlest angel had never been given a name. Although she liked sitting proudly on a branch of the tree each year with her friends, she often wished that she could see the view from the very top. And over the years, the littlest angel had begun to get dusty and old. Her silver hair wasn't as shiny, anymore and there were bits of red tinsel stuck in it. Her smile had faded a little. Each year, she seemed to disappear further towards the back of the tree. She was afraid that this year, she wouldn't be put on display at all.
As Christmas got ever closer, the decorations began to get ready for their biggest event of the year. The fairy lights practised twinkling in the gloom of the attic. The noisy decorations began checking their batteries. But the littlest angel continued to lie very still and very quiet.
The other decorations began to worry. Eventually, Angelica made her way to the bottom of the box, where she peered closely at the littlest angel, with a frown on her usually smiling face. "What's wrong, little one?" She asked. "Can I help?"
The littlest angel shook her head, sadly. "I just wanted to look pretty on the tree," she sighed. "I wanted to sit right at the top and feel special, just once." She looked down at her dusty dress. "But I expect they'll hide me right at the back this year. That's if they even put me on the tree at all."
Angelica blinked back at the littlest angel. "Of course they will," she insisted. "The family love all their decorations because they've had them for so many years. Christmas isn't about having everything looking perfect and shiny; it's about being with the people you love and reminiscing over times gone by. You'll be a part of this Christmas, because you've been a part of their Christmases for such a long time!" She gazed thoughtfully at the littlest angel. "Does it really mean that much to you, to sit at the top of the tree?"
The littlest angel nodded, weakly. "I know it's silly," she whispered. "I just wanted to feel important."
Angelica smiled. "In that case, I have an idea." She wrapped one of her glittery gold wings around the littlest angel and held onto her tightly, as she made her way back to the top of the box. "Stay with me," she instructed. "I promise, you'll soon see just how important you are."
Finally, the day came when the hatch to the attic opened, and a torch illuminated the dark space. A pair of big hands lifted up the box of decorations and carried it carefully down to the brightness of the front room, where the two daughters that lived in the house were gleefully dancing to Christmas music.
"Can we decorate the tree, now?!" The girls cried, rushing towards the box. The older girl opened it up and chuckled to herself. "Hey, Sienna, look!" She called to her sister. "Angelica has a friend with her!" She gently lifted Angelica out of the box, staring at the littlest angel, tucked safely under one wing. "Do you remember this little angel?" She didn't take the littlest angel away from Angelica, but gently pointed to her, smiling.
"Of course I do, Robyn," Sienna laughed. "She's my angel!"
"She's as old as you are," Robyn confirmed. "We got her on your first Christmas, when you were still a baby." She pointed to the red tinsel, sticking out of the littlest angel's silver hair. "That's from the time you tried to make her a hat out of tinsel, remember?"
Sienna giggled. "And look how faded her smile is," she said. "That's because a few years ago, I hung some chocolate coins on the tree and the fairy lights melted them." She pointed to the littlest angel's face. "She had chocolate on her mouth, as though she'd been eating the coins when there was nobody around, so I had to wash it off, didn't I?!"
As the sisters laughed over Christmases past, the memories began to flood back to the littlest angel, too. Suddenly, she began to realise that Angelica had been right. She had been a special part of their Christmases over the years. Perhaps she was a lot more important than she thought!
"I think she and Angelica are friends," Sienna said, stroking Angelica's glittery golden wings. "I don't want to separate them."
Robyn nodded in agreement. "Let's keep them together." She rushed into the kitchen and returned with a damp cloth. "This little one's dress is all dusty, though," she said. "I think we should clean her up and make her look as good as new."
Once the littlest angel had been scrubbed clean, she lay back in the box with Angelica, watching Sienna and Robyn as they danced around the tree, adding tinsel, fairy lights, baubles and all kinds of ornaments. It looked so beautiful, the littlest angel wanted to sing.
Then, finally, the girls gently lifted Angelica and the littlest angel out of the box and placed them right at the top of the tree. The littlest angel's chest swelled with pride, as she admired the view, feeling very important, indeed. She finally realised that it didn't matter that she was little, or that her hair wasn't as shiny as it used to be and her smile was faded. She looked that way because she had been loved over the years. And suddenly, she knew that it didn't matter where on the tree she was; she was a part of the family's past, and as long as those memories stayed in everyone's hearts, she would be a part of many more Christmases to come.
And that made the littlest angel feel enormous.