Christmas Village

Christmas Village

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Advent Sunday

The clock is running!

The first candle on the advent wreath has been lit and we have eaten the first mince pies of the year (taken together with a glass of Madeira!). This year I've started with the Heston spiced ones...

Advent Sunday is also the day when I aim to finish making my Christmas cards and work out who will be receiving which card.  In many cases they are made with the recipient in mind, but in others I find I have an image I really like and so make several variations and leave it to now to decide who will have which.

The other main activity for today has been to make sure that the remaining tasks are in the diary with the days I want to have achieved them.

Remember to make a wish for each mince pie you eat between now and Christmas Day!

Monday, 24 November 2014

The Start of Winter

This morning did feel wintery.

For the first time this year I had to scrape the ice from my windscreen and the car spent the entire journey telling me that there was a "danger of ice".  It was however, a beautiful journey.  I set off as the sun was rising and drove into a sky of ice blue criss-crossed by pink tinged vapour trails.

Later in my journey I was in a traffic queue behind a lorry carrying Christmas Trees.

The Christmas preparation theme continued at lunchtime when I was out to buy a sandwich and came back with a Heston Hidden Clementine Christmas Pudding … That is the key thing for me from now until the last few days before Christmas; buy things as and when you see them and cross them off on The List.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Stir Up Sunday

Today is Stir Up Sunday; the traditional day for making the Christmas Pudding.

In my family it is, by tradition, the day when preparations for Christmas begin in earnest. The Christmas cake would have been made either the week before or that weekend (with everyone having a stir of the mixture and making a wish), advent candles and calendars would be bought and the food list be written up.

So in keeping with tradition, I have now started buying the non-perishable food.  The ginger marmalade is in the cupboard, together with the crackers and the chocolate biscuits. I have my advent candle ready and waiting for next weekend and the invitations to the Sleigh-Run Dinner are ready to go out.

It is also the weekend after Beaujolais Nouveau comes in (on the third Thursday of November). While this isn't the big event it used to be, it is still worth celebrating - so we did!

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Food For Thought

As I have mentioned before, the theme this Christmas is 'Christmas Puddings' and this weekend, inspired by finding some pudding cup cake toppers in Hobbycraft,  our minds turned to food.  What can we do to reproduce puddings in different ways?

There are always cupcakes using the toppers, but there are other ways of using them (especially as we're not really cup cake people because they tend to be so sweet).  We thought first of shortbread rounds with the toppers in the centre. Okay, the colour is wrong, but it plays into the theme and we are very much a shortbread family!

What about chocolate crispy cakes with, placed on top, a dollop of white icing with green holly leaf shapes and red circles, if we've already used the toppers?

I'm also keen to go with a Chocolate Orange unwrapped and with a topping of white icing and the green leaves and red berries.

Then, today in Tesco's I saw these:

Christmas Pudding chocolate muffins!  The fact that they were reduced made them irresistible …