Thursday, 31 December 2009

Making it look like Christmas

This year's tree was the biggest yet - good job we'd moved some furniture around and could fit it in! I went for traditional red & white with a smattering of silver.

I only bought a couple of new decorations this year, one of which was this beauty from SnowFish...

There were also a few handmade additions of my own such as the paper bird on the left of this shot:

The presents were all wrapped in brown parcel paper with white & red ribbon and teeney tiny white baubles.

The smattering of silver was a bit more than a smattering in this bowl full of baubles:

And finally - the table...

Actually, finally a photo of Toby looking cute (note: even his chew coordinated, not deliberately I hasten to add):

So I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and have a brilliant 2010. Happy new year!

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

The gift of giving

I think I’ve mentioned this before but every year at work I organise something called the Christmas Giving Tree. It’s a huge Christmas tree covered in parcel tags – each tag has a gift idea on it from chocolates to towels and biscuits to coffee. People come along, pick a tag and buy the gift on it. Then they wrap it, put on the tag and bring it back to the collection point. The wonderful WRVS collect the presents from us and then distribute them as part of their Meals on Wheels service.

The tree has been going for ten years (I’ve been doing it for three) and it’s a lot of work but so worth it when the grand total comes through – 536 gifts collected this year!
I was away for a few days during the collection period and I had such a happy shock when I walked into the room where we keep the presents to find them not only in the box we keep them in but all over the surrounding chairs and tables – it was a definite lump-in-the-throat moment.

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you about it and maybe it’ll inspire you to do something similar next year – even if you just buy a single present for a neighbour it’ll bring a smile to their face. I’m so happy to have played my part in perhaps bringing a smile to 536 people this Christmas.

Me handing over some presents to the WRVS in front of the tree

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Christmas food

This year was a Delia Christmas - although I did cheat on her briefly with Nigella.

It all started with the cake, pudding & mincemeat back in November and culminated in the Boxing Day leftover feast.

Mince pies and cake.

I bought Delia's Christmas book and I can see it's going to become a firm favourite - and not just for Christmas. As well as the mince pies, pudding and cake I used her book for the bread sauce, cranberry sauce, turkey, sausage rolls, stuffing and for all the timings on the day.

Mince pies and sausage rolls.

That cheating I mentioned? I made Nigella's Fully Festive Ham (from Feast) on Boxing Day and it was gorgeous.

Ham nearly done apart from the final glazing and stint in the hot oven.

No wonder I needed a glass of champers after that lot.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Merry Christmas

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a very happy 2010.


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