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Holiday Guest Post by Pitch Wars Mentor Fiona McLaren!

Friday, 6 December 2013  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Christmas card with hot cup of cappuccino,  cinnamon sticks and christmas tree branch isolated,

Rekindling My Christmas Spirit

I remember sitting in front of the frost-laced window, staring out into the flurrying snow, and wondering whether I would get a glimpse of reindeers sailing through the air, pulling a large sleigh behind them.  Of course, I was six years old at the time.

I also remember looking out a different window as an adult, with my five-year-old niece on my lap, and pointing up to the crisp, clear moon overhead.

‘If you’re lucky…very, very lucky…you might see Santa and his reindeers fly by the moon,’ I whispered to her.

santa reindeerShe grinned, and I felt a tremor of excitement run up her back.  Her breath plumed on the window and her eyes widened.  ‘Do you believe in Santa?’ she asked.

Strangely, the question stuck.  Since that day, I’ve never missed an opportunity to glance out of the window on Christmas Eve, wishing to hear the tinkling sound of reindeer bells or see the moonlight reflecting off the runners of Santa’s sleigh.  Even though the grown up part of me frowns and shakes its head, the child in me still wants to hope.

It only took one simple question from a five-year-old, for me to realize that as an adult, I’d become so consumed with work, bills, and responsibilities that magic, wonder, and the unknown were things I simply didn’t have time for.  Santa stopped existing for me, and only came to life for the niece I so dearly love.  But even that didn’t make me stop and think.  Instead, I ploughed on with my life.  Working every hour I could, scraping together what money I had left, and looking at Christmas as one big expense I could surely do without.

But on the night I pointed to the moon, and felt the unashamed excitement of a child at Christmas, I realised I was missing something so much more important than money, responsibility, and material things.  I was missing the wonder and excitement of the unknown.  The thrill of believing in what you can’t see.  So, I decided there and then, that Santa, and the spirit of Christmas, would once more be part of my life.  Because Santa is love, mystery, laughter, and that special part of your heart that never gives up hope.


Fiona_McLaren_2Fiona McLaren



Fiona McLaren spends her life torn between the sun-drenched island of Cyprus where she lives, and the windswept hills of Scotland where she grew up.  Despite the numerous beaches, pina coladas and water sports close to her home (jealous yet?!), Fiona still manages to squirrel herself away into a dark corner in order to write and read a ridiculous quantity of YA books.



Filed: Misc

  • Moe A. says:

    That was beautifully written. I was enjoying a quite moment in the dining room a couple of days ago when the sound of Charlie Brown’s voice, the beloved Peanuts character, filled me up with nostalgia. The annual Christmas special was on TV, and watching Charlie Brown walk through the animated snow with Linus made me feel like I was 9 years old again.

    For a few minutes I let go of all the real things I’d learned growing up. The minimalist background that’s a signature part of the Peanuts cartoons wasn’t so minimal, but a big canvas for my imagination to populate with what ever I wanted. I imagined the sounds of my brothers and sisters in the next room making too much noise. Mom and dad were laughing in the kitchen, and I was skipping homework to sneak in the rare night time cartoon. What a warm feeling it was.

    That was a wonderful post Fiona.

  • Brenda Drake says:

    I still see Santa and his reindeer out my window at times. It could be the spiked eggnog, though. Thank you for sharing your Holiday post with us.

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