Possibly one of my favourite things ever.
Our Christmas tree. Every year I see-saw over the price and the general non-greenness. Worries which I assuage by making a more environmental friendly, locally gown choice which ups the price but I usually capitulate to my inner child.
It’s probably our biggest christmas expenditure and it makes me so overwhelmingly happy. On a very skint year I can substitute a big bundle of branches or the bay tree in a pot from the garden but really, look – isn’t it toe-curlingly beautiful?
The smell is heavenly though I openly yearn for the Victorian candle clips I remember from my Nannie’s tree as a very small child which add a heady mix of toasted pine resin, bees-wax and candle smoke.
So far I haven’t convinced Steve who, although far from a health and safety enthusiast, says he has to draw the line somewhere. We have a happy mix of eclectic decorations though. Many homemade, a couple by me as a child. Some were gifts from my parent’s collection when I left home and we try to buy or make a new one every year.
This one is my very favourite;
Bought on Zeph’s first birthday it’s the one I always look for first in the mass of tissue paper all our precious baubless are wrapped in. We managed to dress the tree on Steve’s day off this year so we all got to squabble over the lopsided robin, christmas robot and the sparkly pig and tell the story of each purchase and battered handcrafted effort.
We started with the Nightmare Before Christmas on in the background which Zeph watched obsessively as a toddler but swapped to The Snowman when Ida took against Sally in a big way.
This is Ida and I at the front of the bus on the way to see Jack and the Beanstalk. Steve’s lovely sister gave us a family ticket for christmas which was a brilliant present. Apart from Ida now having a giant phobia which causes trouble at night when she wakes up confused from a nightmare and mistakes Steve for the giant, (it’s the beard.)
I’m feeling remarkably festive. Yesterday was my dad’s sixtieth birthday and we had a tea party. It was a perfect get together and I feel loved and loving as I always do after time with my family.
Tomorrow we have more visitors and I’m baking a ham which means the house smells of treacle and cloves and I feel bountiful on the food front. It’s raining heavily outside but I don’t think we need to leave the house now for the next couple of days and I have a deliciously cosy feeling of having pulled up the drawbridge fully provisioned and surrounded by my best-loved people.
With everything made, finished and wrapped I’m turning my mind to the end of the year and the start of the new. Although I haven’t kept up my post-a-day momentum from the beginning of my blog it is still a big and vital part of my life.
I have *met* the most fantastic people through it and had wonderful comments which have healed me and sustained me in a way I’m sure the givers have no idea of. I logged on today to post this and found a lovely blog award from Sharyn at The Kale Chronicles which I can’t wait to post about.
More than that it’s opened a space up in my head and helped me carve out time for my writing habit. I’ve been inspired by so many people to grow, cook, sketch, do things with my children – to notice the world around me – and I feel immensely blessed and full of hope and cheer.
So I just wanted to wish you all the Christmas you want, be it sparkly, festive, peaceful, spiritual or reflective. The sun is returning, the babe is reborn – let’s be full of love and hold back the dark and the cold together.