Sunday, July 11, 2010

Early One Morning... - Christina Hollis

...Just as the sun was rising, I found myself scurrying around the chores in typical headless chicken mode. The night before, I’d fallen asleep the second I slumped down in front of the TV. I’d call that a wake up call, if it wasn’t a contradiction in terms! Too exhausted to make the following day’s packed lunches or start off the washing machine, I crawled straight off to bed. That meant I was already two jobs down when I woke up the next morning. Once the laundry was on the go, the online grocery order posted, the hens let out and fed and all the sandwiches made, I skidded into the greenhouse desperate to get all the watering done before the school run.

As I opened the door, the fragrance of growing things stopped me in my tracks. Brompton stocks in full flower, ripening strawberries and lush herb leaves accidentally crushed under foot all added to the delicious mixture of perfumes, warmed by the low rays of the sun. No wonder aromatherapy is so popular. As W.H Davies wrote in his poem Leisure;

‘What is this life if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare?’

How right he was. No matter how hard any of us work, more jobs will always loom on the horizon. I decided it was time to take a little break. I fetched a cup of tea and enjoyed it sitting on the greenhouse bench. It was worth it to enjoy the pleasures of those flowers and fruit. They are over so quickly.

I’d like to tell you that the hands of the clock magically went backwards for those few precious minutes, but it didn’t happen. We got to school after a hot and breathless hurry, and the panic was only over when I switched on the computer and started work. Working on my latest WIP for a few hours gave me another tranquil space where I could recharge my batteries. Writing is another great stress-buster for me.

That’s just as well, since the whole mouse-on-a-wheel circus of family life starts afresh first thing every morning!
Do you ever manage to snatch a few minutes of time for yourself? And do you have a special sanctuary? I’d love to hear about it!
Christina Hollis writes Modern Romance/Presents for Harlequin Mills and Boon, when she isn’t chasing her tail, the family, hens, or swarms of honeybees.

You can catch up with her here:

Twitter: http://www.twitter/com/christinabooks


Sally Clements said...

Great post, Christina! I too am of the lunch making, chook chasing brigade, and like you writing is my retreat and stress buster! For me, I need to recharge my batteries, and have done just that last week, lazing in provence without the computer! I came back to a release date for my first book, Catch Me A Catch which is 28 July from Wild Rose. Back on the wheel with a vengeance! but at least I got a relaxing break!

Christina Hollis said...

Provence must have been roasting! I'll bet you could smell the lavender and herbs all night, as well as all day.
You must be thrilled about Catch Me A Catch - enjoy every second of the build up to launch day. I hope it; a great success.
have you started your next book yet?

Anne McAllister said...

Christina, what a timely blog post for me. I've been taking care of things that absolutely needed to be done these last few months, and I haven't had time to stop and stare at all. My, how I missed it. Now that life is getting back to a calmer pace, I'm relishing the chance to take a deep breath and look around and simply appreciate.

Thank you!

Christina Hollis said...

Anne, here in the UK we've forgotten what sunshine feels like over the past few years, so the lovely weather we've been having is tempting us all to take things a bit easier. It's good to use that time to concentrate on the things that really matter, like relationships. I hope things are a little bit less fraught for you now.
Best wishes

Pat L. said...

Those photos are gorgeous.

Mary Kirkland said...

I usually try to take a little while out of the day for myself. if it's a bubble bath at the end of the day, or an hour in my chair reading part of a book. I would go crazy if I didn't have a little time to myself.

Christina Hollis said...

HI Pat, I have a few pictures stored on my computer that I look at time and again when I want a boost. These are two of my favourites. I'm glad you like them too!

Christina Hollis said...

Hi Mary
An hour alone with a book is something to treasure. Especially if there's a cup of tea and something chocolatey to go with it!

Elanor said...

As I live in a relatively isolated part of the country, my problem is I have too *much* time for myself - but as I'll be moving away in October hopefully I can immerse myself in big-city life and reminisce about the times when I craved for something exciting to happen!

Best wishes,

Christina Hollis said...

Hi Elanor
To think, after running wild in the city during my late teens and early twenties, I couldn't wait to leave it all behind and escape to the country!
Hope all goes well with your October move
Christina x

Linda Henderson said...

I like to just curl up in my chair with a hot or cold drink depending on the weather and read. I love candles, so I usually have one burning. This relaxes me.