Nicola Holden Designs – Contemporary Interior Designer, London.

The time has come for me to sign off for 2013 for a much needed break. It has been an exciting and busy year, both personally and professionally, but now it is time to kick back and relax, to spend time with family and friends, to enjoy good food and wine, and to remember that Christmas is about so much more than Santa Claus and presents.

ChristmasTree

I thought I’d share with you all some images of my Christmas tree, which is scattered with happy memories from all my travels around the world – angels from Zimbabwe (one made from a now worthless bank note!), stars from Scotland and Cambodia, baubles from Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam, ceramic birds from South Africa, a bright beaded parrot bought whilst on honeymoon is Costa Rica, beads from Kenya, and a Swedish Father Christmas!

ChristmasCollage

So, let me finish by wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year.

Whether you’re a client, a supplier or someone who has taken an interest in our consultancy, we’d like to thank you all for your involvement in our business this year.

Bring on 2014!

“Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days, recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth, and transport the traveler back to his own fireside and quiet home!”
Charles Dickens

Images © Nicola Holden.

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education-nelson-mandela-picture-quoteIt is with a mixture of emotions that I have said goodbye to Nelson Mandela these past couple of weeks. Sadness at his passing, but gratitude for the legacy that he has left us. His courage and determination is an example to us all!

Mandela once said “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”, and that is so true.

I think that most of you, my lovely readers, know that my home is Zimbabwe, and that I have a great passion for the African continent. My heart is still very much there! I don’t know, however, how many of you know about the other hat I wear – the hat that is not interior design. So, as 2013 comes to an end, and it is generally a time of reflection, I thought I would tell you about the charity that I am a trustee for.

Zimbabwe's children

The charity is called Makomborero, which means ‘blessings’ in Shona, one of the local languages in Zimbabwe. Makomborero is a small charity that is making a huge impact on Zimbabwe’s children. The charity gives talented students the opportunity to complete their A-Level education, giving these children the chance to fulfil their undeniable potential, and hope for a better future. These children are so desperate to learn that, prior to Makomborero, one of our students was walking 15 miles each way to school – more than a marathon every day just for the privilege of getting an education. That was Peter. Peter is now working for an accountancy firm, and is studying to become an accountant. You can read the inspiring stories of what our students have so far accomplished on the Makomborero website.

Makomborero students

Makomborero is linking up with the organisers of the UK’s largest choral festival, Brandenburg Choral Festival, to raise funds through ticket sales for a concert featuring the voices of Vivace Chorus and Farnham Youth Choir performing works by two top contemporary English composers, including Rutter’s Mass of the Children and Chilcott’s Requiem.

The “Rutter by candlelight” concert will be held at St Martin-in-the-Fields Church on Trafalgar Square, on Friday 3rd January starting at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £18 and can be bought through the Makomborero events page.

ConcertFlyer

So if you, like me, have been inspired by Mandela, and would like to have an opportunity to make a real difference in someone else’s life, please consider Makomborero. And, if you do attend our concert, do drop by and say hello. I’ll be there along with one or two other UK trustees.

“Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of a mine, that a child of a farmworker can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.”
Nelson Mandela

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