So much so that I whipped up a gigantic batch of home-made vanilla fudge for my kids to give as Christmas gifts to their teachers and classroom assistants at school.
But it’s ironic – that snap paints such a vivid picture of perfect Christmas craftiness – and yet I burnt the second batch and yelled at my child for distracting me at the crucial moment.
But THAT’S what I love most about Christmas. Not burned kitchen disasters and family rows but the fact that no matter how insane the world gets and how seemingly-far away we seem to move from the Christmas story, it only ever gets more poignant, real, meaningful.
That stable, that must have seemed a million miles away from what the birth of a king was supposed to be like, and the immense vulnerability Mary must have felt. The precarious treasure of it all amid such mayhem, upheaval, societal obligation.
Out of all that comes hope. Pure, and unadulterated. Hope that transcends everything and infuses even burnt fudge and family fall-outs with the promise of something other… and not hope that disappoints.
Sometimes it’s difficult at Christmas to reconcile that with the reality of our lives. My mind’s on people who lost a baby in tragic circumstances this time last year.
But in an online conversation earlier this week I remembered one of my favourite quotes:
Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings while it is still dark.
Even when it’s dark – whatever the cause of your darkness – Christmas gives us cause to remember that light exists.