It’s the fourth day of Christmas

So we get four calling birds.  I hope you’ve all had a lovely Christmas.  We’re still in the thick of it, with lots of people staying, leaving and arriving.

Wreath – I got the foam ring from Amazon

My wreath is starting to look a bit tired now but it looked terrific when I first made it.  I originally consulted Celebrate but Pippa Middleton more or less told me what I already knew – except she recommended that I add roses to it, which I didn’t have and even if I had, I probably wouldn’t waste roses on a Christmas wreath.  In the end, I used holly, teucrium, Californian lilac and rosemary.

Christmas cake – it’s a bit minimalist

I made the Christmas cake at the start of December and my husband has been in charge of feeding it with cherry brandy.  I ended up using ready rolled marzipan and royal icing – they are only sold for round cakes but were JUST big enough to cover my (slightly larger) square cake.

It is too early for Christmas

However, I have stocked up on a load of wrapping paper and a couple of advent calendars.  I usually buy lots of fairly neutral wrapping paper at Christmas and then can use it throughout the year.  There’s a thing in The Spike about wrapping paper, which is worth a read.  I was tempted to start using ribbon after reading it (and looking at the Pinterest photos) but then decided that as I have managed to get to now not being the sort of person who uses ribbon, I won’t start now.  I mean, I still use envelope labels for the from / to on the presents.

I probably won’t use all this right away
Here are the Advent Calendars

I got the advent calendars from After Noah.  This, thank goodness, is still going and hasn’t been made into an estate agent or scent shop.

On the bus this morning, there was a couple having really rather a vicious argument about Christmas.  I didn’t get the entire thing but the gist was that she wanted them both to go to her family at Christmas.  I would have been rather sympathetic but she was loud, passive aggressive and it was terrible trying NOT to stare at them.

The Christmas-cards-designed-by-a-child have come back from school so I guess I’d better start writing them soon.  Perhaps I should clear all the stuff off the mantelpieces too.

Post Christmas slump

It’s a sunny, cold day here – yesterday, there was still frost on the lawn at 2pm.  Not a whole lot is happening – my son is very slightly poorly.  The sort of poorly where you can only do things you want to do.  Which means that he can pretty much only play Minecraft.  He keep asking me to help him with it but I’m fairly sure that I don’t want to get sucked into the abyss that is Minecraft.

Don't you love a bright, cold day?
Don’t you love a bright, cold day?
We'll go for a bracing walk tomorrow
We’ll go for a bracing walk tomorrow

It’s New Year!

I don’t think we’re going to achieve all that much today.  Our lovely friends have all gone (they have school and work tomorrow) so today I am going to do laundry, my son is going to watch cartoons about violent robots from another dimension and my daughter is going to play with Lego.

I wish I’d taken some photos of the fog on Friday, it was quite something.  The ferries were cancelled and we all just sat in the house feeling as though we were in an Agatha Christie novel.  Apart from L, who came here from work and had a hideous journey involving broken train signals and closed roads.

On New Year’s Day itself, we all went for a walk along the seafront and came across a group of hardy souls who were going for their first swim of the year.  They meet every Friday to swim in the sea so are used to cold water.

People swimming in the sea on New Year's Day
People swimming in the sea on New Year’s Day

Build it up, knock it down

We arrived at Christmas and have now left it behind.  I’ve been staying at my in laws’ for the last few days (which was super) so haven’t been posting … and realistically, no one expects bloggers to post over Christmas.

We ate and drank (I drank all my father in law’s tawny port) and gave each other loads of cool stuff.

Like this!
Like this!

I’ve been jonesing to get the kids MagnaTiles for a little while ago but hadn’t because they had loads of other stuff and blah blah blah.  Both my son and daughter like playing with them (and so do I) – both have a habit of wanting whichever piece you have just added to your structure so it helps familial negotiations.

When you have finished, get your kids to knock your structure down.  They aren’t meant to last.

We’re nearly at Christmas

It’s funny but Christmas is starting to feel more like a destination than a time of year.  We’ve done all our shopping (I think), the marzipan is on the Christmas cake and my son had his last day at school yesterday.

Nearly Christmas?
Nearly Christmas?

My husband and son are going to see Star Wars this morning – I was meant to go too but my daughter is a bit poorly so isn’t going to preschool for her last day.  Perhaps we’ll put Harry Potter on the telly.