That’s Christmas wrapped up for another year. Well almost. There are still presents under the tree for guests yet to arrive, and I still seem to have relatives coming down the stairs in the morning making a cup of tea!

The tree has certainly seen better days, but as baubles drop one by one, it will cling to life until we welcome in the new year.

These in-between days are a little odd, but much welcomed. Disney movies by the fire, Monopoly bankruptcy - since when were credit cards a thing?

Plus, this year brings to my living room a Virtual Reality world filled with sharks and alien invasions! (Not at the same time). Luckily, traditions of walks on Wimbledon Common, frostbite noses and gingerbread lattés with friends at The Ivy Café, all retain the charms of a familiar Christmas.

Wimbledon Times:

However, this time of year is certainly one of reflection. Time to breathe in what 2019 brought us and try to accept what it took away from our lives. Ups and downs are what makes us human, but I’m left questioning what can we hold on to when the world keeps changing.

We can try and keep the life we recognise and make it work, or let go of things that belong in the past and embrace a future of hope and glory.

Be it a new relationship status, family unit, career, home or even a new health habit. It’s super tough dealing with change thrust upon us and its even harder to make a change because that voice in our head gets so loud we can no longer ignore it.

Battles between hearts and minds may always plague us, but the New Year brings us renewed strength to make that change.

Wimbledon Times:

One thing we can all hold on to is gratitude for what we have and a thought for those who are struggling with things we take for granted. Earlier this month, local radio station Flex FM Radio organised a 24-hour Toy Drive, hosted by DJ Rick Live and DJ Milktray to support the Shooting Star Children's Hospice in Hampton.

The artists, listeners and local community donated toys and in addition, also raised over £2000 to support children with life-limiting conditions and their families this Christmas. The CEO of Flex FM Carl Shepherd was determined to make a difference to these children’s lives and grateful to all those who got behind the radio stations successful campaign.

Winter certainly turns our mind to those without a home. I will continue to support Evolve Housing + Support next year, but I am also pleased to learn that the housing charity Shelter has chosen to open a charity shop in Wimbledon Village.

Wimbledon Times:

The new ‘Boutique by Shelter’ store will be open for business from 11th January, seven days a week. Designed by Wayne Hemingway and his team – the Wimbledon Village boutique charity shop will sell designer, high-end high street and vintage one-off finds at affordable prices.

With homelessness on the rise across London, sales from the shop will help Shelter defend the right to decent housing across the capital and further afield.

Although I’ve not yet watched ‘Last Christmas’ in the cinema, it echoes a common modern problem of having food, water, a good job and warm home - yet still feeling desolate. The boutique will be at the heart of the community, offering a friendly welcome and plenty of opportunities to volunteer.

So there we have it. Maybe this space between Christmas and New Year is meant to be filled with blessings, yet also a little uncomfortable.

It provides room in our minds to work out what went right, what went wrong and the courage to make changes in our lives that will ensure 2020 is the year all our dreams came true. (It just may come in different wrapping paper than we imagined).

Happy New Year Wimbledon!