I always like to imagine that Christmas Day will be like the photos in a food magazine; ordered, beautiful, sumptuous, relaxed. I dream of the leisurely roll-out of heavenly brunches and treats, the bubbles, the laughter, the ease. Sea views perhaps. A swim or two. New potatoes.
The reality however, is sometimes rather different! And the truth is that even when the day itself does resemble my food mag dream, it takes a helluva lot of planning, shopping, and cooking to get it that way.
Here in the Antipodes, Christmas comes after all our year-end break-ups, smack at the beginning of our big summer holidays, and there is usually packing, driving and travelling on top of everything else. Thinly veiled chaos.
So Crazy? Sometimes Stressed? Yes, often Christmas and the weeks leading up to it can be hectic, and we need all the support we can get.
Luckily, I have my favourite herb Withania somnifera to help me through. Honestly, I have said many a time they should put this in the tap water. Withania is known by herbalists as an adaptogen, which means it increases our resistance to stress and our ability to cope and perform under pressure, to be calm in the face Christmas shopping at the supermarket, to be sharp and focussed facing the hoards at the mall. Withania also improves our energy and stamina, it is rejuvenating and restoring. All this and it helps us have a better sleep too. Why wouldn’t you?
One of Withania’s best mates is the humble and powerful Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis), which eases nervous tension and helps to calm a frantic mind. With these two by my side I am a better, brighter, happier person! Team them up with some extra B vitamins in our StressCare and I am sorted for the season. We use up extra B vitamins during times of stress, and topping up is essential for helping increase resilience and maintain good energy levels.
The more sorted we are, the more relaxed we are, the more we are free to enjoy our day and each other. So this Christmas, I’m going to start taking my herbs well ahead of time, and coast into that beautiful, sumptuous day with a smile. I hope you do too.