YEP Says (Dec 24): Finding the spirit of Christmas - after the frenzy

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So, are you ready?

Time seems to move a lot more quickly in the run up to Christmas, while, at the same time, the ‘to do’ lists get longer and tempers grow shorter.

A most wonderful time of year it is, when the race to the finish line grows ever more manic and the wallet empties faster than water through a sieve.

But there will come a point today when it’s done. When we’re all as ready as we’ll ever be and there’s a kind of ‘pause’, almost a holding of breath, before the festivities of tomorrow begin in earnest.

And perhaps it is at that point, when the jingle tills have coppered up, the shops have shut and the front door is locked, that the true spirit of Christmas can filter its way through.

Surely the night before Christmas is the time for counting one’s blessings, for appreciating one’s family and friends, and for remembering those who will not be cosy, comfortable and cared for this night.

For remembering, too, those working their socks off regardless of the importance of the date, keeping all of us safe while Santa sweeps the skies on his sleigh.

As your Yorkshire Evening Post prepares to take a brief pause before re-appearing again on Boxing Day, we would like to say thank you to all our readers for their support, loyalty and friendship over the past 12 months.

In particular we’d like to give a special thanks to those whose acts of kindness mean vulnerable children in West Yorkshire will have presents to open tomorrow – a record-breaking 22,145 of them, in fact, thanks to our Mission Christmas appeal in association with Radio Aire.

As part of Mission Christmas we asked readers to donate new and unwrapped gifts, suitable for babies to 18 year olds, at drop-off points across the city.

Several companies also chose to back the campaign by donating gifts, money and even volunteer hours to distribute the toys. Once collected, the gifts were distributed to children through organisations such as Martins House Hospice, Candlelighters, Leeds Children’s Hospital, Barnardos and children’s centres.

Your generosity means more than words can say.

A heartfelt Merry Christmas to all our readers. We wish you all a very happy New Year.