Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Bedtime Story (5/12/2018)

As is tradition on this blog, I'll be writing some Christmas themed bedtime stories, this month!  However, before we get into the first one, I would like to make a small announcement.

For over three and a half years, I've been writing weekly bedtime stories.  These stories have been published here for free and there is now a full list of hundreds to share with the children in your life.  Whilst I've enjoyed creating these stories, it has, at times, been difficult to maintain a level of originality and to ensure that new stories are ready to go up each week.  Finding time to podcast the stories as well, in order to make them more accessible, has also been challenging, given that this blog is something I maintain as a hobby, alongside my day job, my YouTube channel, running an abuse-awareness campaign account on Twitter, being in charge of social media for the chorus I sing with and of course, practising for said chorus.  Add to that the fact that I would like to be writing more books and a wider range of blog posts and you might understand just how much effort goes into ensuring that the bedtime story feature goes live each week without fail.  

For these reasons, I have decided that, as of January 2019, the bedtime story feature will be going on an indefinite hiatus.  I'm referring to it as a "hiatus," rather than saying the feature will stop and never return, as I don't want to rule that out entirely.  However, for the foreseeable future, my goal is to find time to write more blog posts and to potentially begin working on a new book, whilst also trying to grow my YouTube channel and begin working to improve my directing skills (did I mention I'm also Assistant Director of the chorus I sing with?!).  With all of that taking priority, I don't see myself finding the time to keep up with the bedtime story feature, as the very last thing I want to do is to rush the process and create stories that are not up to the usual standard I pride myself on.

I'd like to thank everyone who has shared the weekly bedtime stories with the little ones in their lives, over the last almost four years.  The bedtime stories page will remain up on this blog and therefore the stories can still be enjoyed for years to come.  I also hope you will enjoy these last few, festive additions and that you'll continue to visit this blog, to see what I get up to next!

With that out of the way, let's get on with the story!  As usual, it's also available as a podcast.

"What Shall We Hang On The Christmas Tree?!"

The Christmas tree was standing tall,
Green and lush and proud.
Mum handed decorations to all;
Shiny baubles, gold and round.

But "what are these?" Young Florence asked,
Looking ready to make a fuss.
"These round things don't mean anything!
We should hang something special to us!"

Her brothers frowned and scratched their heads.
Whatever did young Flo mean?
"Our Christmas isn't baubles and stars," Flo said.
"It's a very different scene."

"We should hang excited faces,
Hardly able to sleep.
And piles of torn off wrapping paper,
Lying crumpled in a heap."

Her brothers gathered closer:
"We could make our own!" They cried.
"Pictures of what Christmas is to us;
Festive films, cocoa and mince pies!"

And so the family set to work,
creating decorations to hang.
Laughter rang out through the house,
As from each mind an idea sprang.

"I'll draw my cosy pyjamas,
I wear each year on Christmas Eve.
The ones with Santa's sleigh on the front,
And reindeer flying up the sleeves!"

"Then I'll draw Bobby at dinner,
refusing to eat any sprouts,"
Florence said with a giggle.
"Those Memories are what Christmas is about."

Her brothers laughed and nodded.
"I'll draw Dad with the Christmas lights,"
Bobby replied, with a chuckle.
"They always get into a fight!"

"Draw the dog chasing wrapping paper,"
Flo's brother, Ben, exclaimed.
"Or the photo of Dad eating turkey at midnight!
The one Mum printed out and had framed!"

They all sat around the table,
Sharing memories from Christmases past.
With each joyful memory they laughed and smiled,
Hardly believing that time flew so fast.

"Remember when Ben got a ping pong set
And the ball flew across the room?
It knocked over a flower pot
And Mum just laughed and gave Ben a broom!"

They thought back over presents
And family games they'd all played.
They remembered delicious Christmas dinners
At a table all festively laid.

Christmas cracker jokes that made them groan,
Cosy evenings with a warm, glowing fire.
The three children remembered it all
And their smiles grew wider and wider.

"This is what Christmas is all about,"
Flo said, "not baubles on a tree.
But memories shared and fun to be had,
With your best friends and your family."

And together they hung all their pictures
On the Christmas tree with pride.
Seeing all of their happy, festive memories
Made each of them feel warm inside.

"We'll add the baubles as well though,"
Flo said, grinning from ear to ear.
"Because decorating the tree together
Can be a memory we make this year."

It really was the prettiest tree;
Probably the family's best ever!
But better than any decoration
Was the joy of just being together.


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