A Holiday Address From Her Royal Highness – 2017 Edition

A Holiday Address from her Royal Highness - www.alliepottswrites.com
Her Royal Highness fell asleep while posing for this year’s royal portrait.

It gives us great joy to address you on this, the shortest day of the year. Though this means the longest night is upon us once more, We say joy, because from this point on, darkness will only grow shorter.

While winter has begun, blanketing half the world in cold and gray, We take comfort in the knowledge that the season, for all its cruelty, is in a state of retreat at its very beginning, and that summer is present, if only on the other side of the world. While winter may yet show its bite, the growing days are the constant reminder that winter’s worst is never more than temporary.

Is it any wonder then, the word following the beginning of winter, the world solstice, is so close in form and sound to solace?

And so we fight back against the approaching cold with blankets, cookies, and candles, confident in the knowledge we have the upper hand. We refuse to give into the darkness and instead, celebrate the joy that is this season by opening our hearts and homes to strangers as well as those held most dear.

Winter may represent the end of the year, but with it also, a beginning. It is a chance to start over, to forgive, to change, to add more pillows, or address past mistakes.

So go forth, and do not be afraid of the darkness that surrounds, for it has already lost. Cherish the traditions that brought you this far, but dare to do something different from time to time. Make this coming year everything you wished the previous year could be. For our time in the summer’s sun is all to short and winter will return again.

Therefore always remember to look for the joy in the everyday, whether that day be winter, spring, summer or fall. Know that all days have within them the potential to be shiny and bright. The only difference is the season.

Warmest Regards,

HRH, The Princess Royal V.C. Potts, the first of her name

Although this is my last regularly scheduled post for the year, I do have one more post planned – the conclusion to the short story mysteries series I’ve been running on Saturdays since November. If you’ve missed them, you can read the first in the series here. Fair warning – they have absolutely nothing to do with the holidays, so do not expect warm fuzzy feelings.

I’ll still be checking in from time to time, but will be spending most of the next few days deep into mugs of hot chocolate (with the occasional eggnog) while I plot and plan for 2018.

I hope each of you also gets some time for rest and relaxation as well however you choose to celebrate the changing of the year.


Ani’s Advent Invitation: What is magic? A holiday story (and a new book!) from Allie Potts

An essay about the magic of Christmas - www.alliepottswrites.com

Her Royal Highness used her influence to gain me an audience with Ani of Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo where I am discussing my experience with a bit of holiday magic. I have disabled comments here and encourage you to see what else the small dog (and Sue) has to say.

via Ani’s Advent Invitation: What is magic? A holiday story (and a new book!) from Allie Potts

A Holiday Message from Her Royal Highness

A #Holiday Message from Her Royal Highness - www.alliepottswrites.comGreetings to all,

It pleases us to no end to be able to address you all at this, most joyous time of year. It is a season made even more joyous thanks to the continuing efforts of you, Our most loyal subjects.

The state of the realm remains strong, with the exception of the great pillow drought which has seemingly continued well beyond what might have otherwise been deemed an acceptable transitional period. No efforts, nor resources shall be spared in the coming year to find a solution to this ongoing problem.

The squirrel menace remains firmly in check, if not in a state of full retreat, which may or may not have anything to do with the cooling temperatures. However, the drastic reduction in squirrel related crimes and other offenses does in no way signify that the war against this scourge is complete. We encourage all citizens to remain ever vigilant, as we shall be, and report any and all activity considered at odds with the values of the realm.

However, while there have been battles fought this year, there have been plenty of other victories too. When faced with the dark waters of lakes and oceans unknown, we as a people, jumped in. We repeatedly fought against currents and secured our goals. Returning to shore, we claimed the land beneath our feet with the confidence that only those who have suffered challenge only to triumph can command.

New alliances have been brokered in Our name. Storms may have blown, knocking down Our most ancient fences and causing damage most distressing. However, now, neighbors are no longer isolated from neighbor.  As a result, new and stronger friendships have been given birth in that storm’s wake.

We have made numerous tours of the surrounding territory as our boundaries continue to expand, unfettered. Indeed, Our noble oversight and justice now even extends well into what previously was considered a place to be feared, a no man’s land, a place which may be more commonly known as The Crawl Space, bringing light and rule to where there once was none.

It feels fitting to end this address to you on the subject of light. To quote her Royal Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, who reminded us this time last year of an old saying in her address, ‘it is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.’

There is much unknown about the coming year. Squirrels could return with fleas. Greater storms may blow. But the sun, with its light most high, can always be counted on to rise, no matter what tomorrow brings. Stay true to the values you hold most dear. Be the candle in the darkness so others may find their way. And do not be afraid, for only in the darkness do we find how brightly we might shine.

From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving

Today is Thanksgiving, or if you are part of the 95% that makes up the rest of the world, Thursday. That is unless of course you aren’t reading this on a Thursday. Technically it isn’t Thursday for me either as I am writing this well in advance of my near certain tryptophan-induced turkey coma. I digress.

By the time you read this, my turkey day celebrations will be underway. My children have likely spent the last hour complaining about how mean I have been for not giving them snacks when all I was trying to do is ensure they have room in their tummies for a no thank you helping of green bean casserole. It’s delicious! Trust me! My dad and Lamont are likely outside debating the merits of smoking a bird with charcoal versus electricity as they monitor the meat thermometer’s readings while holding a beer in hand. Meanwhile, my stepmom is probably barricaded behind a kitchen counter covered in heating pads and Pyrex.

My teenaged brothers have likely been tasked with setting the table and filling glasses with water but are more interested in coordinating an afternoon meeting with a girlfriend or two. I will notice fewer place settings filling the room as both my sisters (and their families) are attending meals elsewhere this year. Left to represent the daughters of the family, I may even be invited to sit at the grown-up table.

Even so, the house will hardly feel empty. My grandfather and his wife may join us or they may not. At 100, grandpa doesn’t really worry about things like advanced planning anymore. The dogs will run underfoot hopeful that someone will drop something tasty. Phones will ring off their hooks as various relatives check in and at some point, my step-aunt and uncle will arrive with rolls (and maybe a pie), signaling that the time for celebration has come.

The grown-ups (and big kids) will eat until our stomachs reach their limit. LT will likely experiment with gravy and cranberry sauce as hair care while his brother runs off to re-discover their uncles’ old toys. Before long, it will be time to pry Lamont away from the football game on TV and herd the children into the car so that we can repeat the entire process at Lamont’s parents’ house.

Or none of this might happen. My Thanksgivings are delicious, messy, loud and at times chaotic affairs. It is a day steeped in tradition, but flexibility too. It’s a holiday like no other. I surround myself with family, but someone else might prefer a quiet meal for two. We’ll cook a turkey, but the house across the street from us may serve ham or tofurkey instead. There are very, very few wrong Thanksgiving traditions. It is a holiday that allows you to celebrate as you see fit as long as you simply remember to say, thank you.

So here’s wishing a Happy Thanksgiving to you all no matter how you celebrate. Or Thursday. Or whatever.

And thank you.