Merry Christmas from Me to You, You and All of You…

Fa la la la, ha ha ha muhahahaha! ‘Tis Christmas Eve and all the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future are in the aether and haunting my brethren’s beautifully decorated Christmas tree. (The Ghost of Christmas Future Perfect will have arrived by the time I finish writing this timely blogpost.) Altogether, I feel that there’s some irrational, uncanny spirit upon me and am experiencing the realisation that “Whoa! I’m in the midst of Christmas ritual!

View this post on Instagram

'Tis the season! Have a cup of good cheer…

A post shared by James Clayton (@jamazingclayton) on

It’s all happening: Doodling up Christmas cards; Watching Christmas movies; Rocking out in celebratory style to ebullient party metal and Christmas tunes; Going to a Nine Lessons and Carols service and having minor crises (I can’t settle on one key when I’m singing and struggle to work out how my Zen Buddhist principles fit with this Christian festival).

Tomorrow is Christmas Day and the rituals will continue: gift-giving; gift-receiving (I like socks); videogames and board games with my lovely relatives; feasting on sprouts; cleaning up all the greasy pots and cutlery that my lovely relatives have left for someone (me) to tidy up. That’s what my Christmas looks like every year and it’s always nice. I’m now going to go and enjoy that very typical and very nice Christmas, taking a conscious moment to: be with my blood-clan, be present, be (semi)relaxed and be grateful as I meditate on the good stuff amidst the bleak (erm, unseasonably mild) midwinter.

I hope that your Christmas is, likewise, lovely. If you’re finding things hard, this article on being depressed at Christmas is a good and possibly helpful read. Otherwise, take care of yourselves and each other and take the opportunity to reach out to your fellow humans and realise that, if anything, this holiday is all about reconnecting with the best of the human spirit. The best of the human spirit is within you and you’ve been working too hard, handling too much stress and you deserve a break and warm fuzzies. Yes, I’m talking to you, you and all of you. And that thing too. I have no idea what that is but I’m going to invite it in, feed it roast parsnips and dance with it.

Allora, enough! Christmas! The spirit is upon me and I’ll now spirit away. (There are greasy pots to wash and gifts to wrap in ham-fisted fashion.) All my festive best wishes, thanks for reading and have an excellent Christmas… 😀

 

Advertisements

Merry Christmas, Everyone…

View this post on Instagram

A Christmas card to everyone from me…

A post shared by James Clayton (@jamazingclayton) on

Hey hey, ho ho ho, fa la la, la la! It’s Christmas Eve and I’m tuning out to enjoy the holiday season. Before I do that though, I thought I’d stick up a best wishes message to anyone who might be passing by. There’s a full festive round-up of links and thoughts right here if you’re interested. Otherwise, thanks for reading and all the best of the festive season to all you beautiful souls out there, wherever and however you are celebrating. I urge you to have yourself a very Merry Christmas… 😀

Open up the Advent Calendar of Magical Christmas Artefacts…

Happy December! It’s okay to start feeling festive and talking about Christmas now. People have opened up the first window on their advent calendars. I’ve opened up the first window on my advent calendar. It looks like this…

Day 1 of the Magical Artefact Advent Calendar turns out to be the Seasonal Peace Pipe…

And so it shall continue. Every day up until Christmas Eve I’m going to be sketching one of the Magical Christmas Artefacts and displaying it on my arty-doodle blog. Expect lots of mystical seasonal relics, kitschy winter paraphernalia and surrounding squigglies. Oh, and with it being December I’m also going to get on the greeting card trail so if you’d like Christmas correspondence from me, just say hello (as instructed in this blogpost). I’m listening to Bob Dylan’s Christmas album and lighting up up with the festive spirit! Can you feel the magic in the air?!

It may take a bit more time actually ’cause it’s still early. Regardless, the advent calendar is open, welcome to December and here’s to a nice Yuletide season. Fa la la la la, friends…

Call If You Want Christmas Correspondence…

Yo ho ho, whoa no now! Christmas is coming closer. It’s just a shade under six weeks away and there are decorations in shopping centres and weather is chilly. I’d say that talk of Christmas is still premature but I’m going to commit that crime because I’ve got festive things to plan and can’t ignore the winterish bite in the air.

I feel a strange urge to go out and buy a kitschy jumper. I’ve also started to get that urge of wanting to make stuff and send things to people. Forget the yearning for ironic woolwear. Let’s unravel with the latter urge…

Here how I roll when the festive season rolls around: my favourite thing about the yule period is writing Christmas cards. That’s how I get my pre-Christmas kicks in the bleak mid-early-winter. Christmas is all about giving and I only really enjoy it as a celebration of giving. The giving is definitely better than the receiving. I also rate Christmas as a time to really concentrate on spreading joy, celebrating human life and just everybody being ‘good people’.  (And all people are ‘good people’ – it’s just a lot of people get distracted, y’know?)

All I have to offer is some creative zest and willingness to try to be ‘good people’ by sending nice things to ‘good people’. I don’t like the idea of the Christmas card tradition going extinct just because we have text messaging, email, Twit-uh-huh and the Matrix Fakebook. Where’s the fun in sending tokenistic yuletide salutations via those cyberspace platforms? It’s more fun handwriting Christmas cards, doodling over bits of paper and tripping down off to the post office with them all. For old time’s sake and to spread some festive cheer, I take great pleasure in producing Christmas correspondence and I’ll be doing that in coming weeks.

The point of this premature post then is this – say hello if you’d like to get something from me in the post. It’s an open offer to anyone and everyone – if you want a personalised festive letter and some other hand-inked thingies and random bits in a jiffy bag just let me know and I’ll add you to the list and get your address down (Just for the postage – not for stalking or other nefarious persons because that is not what ‘good people’ do). If I know you on Twitter or Facebook send me a message or you can send me an email (jamesclayton.web@gmail.com). It doesn’t matter if we don’t know each other – I like you anyway and I want to send you Christmas correspondence…

I apologise for talking about Christmas when it’s too early to be talking about Christmas – I just wanted to flag it up in advance so I can be prepared and am not posting things that will only arrive in 2014. Say hello if you want me to send you stuff and, for now, just go about being good people and we’ll really get it on with full-throttle festive cheer in December…