By Linda Parker
So, it’s nearly Christmas, the builders aren’t finished, and there is a fine layer of dust over the entire ground floor …
We love a decorative Christmas lamp, this is the Christmas Shooting Star wall light, from a selection of festive items at Magical Story.
Under the circumstances, the decorations are beginning to look dusty, but I’m trying not to fret. Various domestic upheavals in my house, at the builder’s residence and dramas involving EDF and the gas supplier have meant quite a lot of delays. Consequently, we’re not finished (yet) but I’m determined to press ahead with Christmas frivolities, decorations and preparations as planned and already started. When I’ve started putting Christmas cards up on top of dust-sheet covered boxes and ignoring stacks of builders’ materials in the hall, it’s time to resign myself to the fact that a glamorous and organised festive season has managed to escape from under my nose, yet again. One day it will happen …
I’m still planning and buying Christmas decs though; one of the ideas I’m pressing ahead with is to have festive bedrooms … on the basis that we have a stream of kids and friends coming to stay, spread out over the entire Christmas school and work holidays. I think it’s going to be very jolly having Xmas-themed and decorated bedrooms, with fairy lights and mini-trees. Asda, Matalan and H&M have some of the most affordable and gorgeous Christmas bedding I’ve seen for years; it’s well worth the modest investment. After all it’s going to be used for a week or so, then washed, pressed and put away so will last for years and years! If I get the time and inclination another one of my Christmas plans is to get hold of some plain, old-fashioned cosy winceyette sheets (sometimes called flannel or flannelette) and embroider them with individual names – so they can be used in addition to the Santa Claus and Christmas tree duvet covers. At the moment, the best place for winceyette looks as if it’s John Lewis if you want to buy it by the metre, or if you want ready-made sheets, try The Linen Cupboard.
My reasoning is … if there are lots of beautiful Christmas cosy home ideas scattered around, I won’t be stuck for prezzies if unexpected guests arrive. Just make sure there’s plenty of wrapping paper in the cupboard.
It’s always a good idea to have some things floating around that need an element of creativity, either to distract grumpy children or to give them something to do when you really, really, really need a lie-down. A little stock of Christmas Creatures from Clare Loves is probably an excellent distraction mechanism. Add some glue and glitter for supersonic sparkles.
I’m looking forward to breaking out the home-made plum gin and plum brandy. I know that I’ll be happy to slug it down from a plastic beaker, but I’m going to make the effort to find all the pretty cocktail glasses that have been boxed up in storage for the last few years. It’s difficult to ignore these beautiful Martini glasses from Gurasu though, I wonder if I can sneak in an order in time for Christmas … they’re possibly a bit out of budget, but I did save money by brewing my own in the first place … See them here.
Notwithstanding the current levels of mess and dust, I think we’ll be having a bit more of a supermarket Christmas, food-wise, than I would wish for. However, having had a bit of a preview from Waitrose, I don’t think that’s going to be too much of a hardship. OK, so I’ll just have to pretend I made some of my on-the-list show-stoppers. This is definitely one of them … it’s the Waitrose Christmas Eggnog Custard Tart, £5.99 and available from the 15th Dec, ingredients include brandy, spices, nutmeg and a dusting of dark chocolate. Well done Waitrose!
And finally, I don’t want to be a gloomy boots, but I saw something quite worrying in yesterday’s i newspaper, see the full article here . Those figures are very scary. Having given up wheat and sugar for probably 99% of the time during the last five months, I’ve lost loads of weight, and have been walking between three and six miles per day. However, in recent weeks I’ve been thinking ‘just one’ cupcake or muffin or treat or whatever won’t do any harm. Well in fact, I think these figures show that actually one of those so-called ‘treats’ will actually do some harm and we all need to get over the idea that just one here and there doesn’t really count. 10 teaspoons is an awful lot of sugar packed into a very small treat!
And with that rather sobering thought I wish all my readers a very happy and festive Christmas, see you the other side of the New Year, with renewed strength of mind regarding healthy eating!