I know I mentioned yesterday that this weekend, despite visiting the Christmas Fayre, I've not been feeling particularly festive. My Rangers take to calling me a Humbug and I guess they have a point. I was reading Sarah's very eloquent (as ever) post on people's differing views on Christmas and I don't know which camp I fall into. I certainly don't have a theme. Most years I don't even decorate. (Seriously: I gave my Christmas tree away last year as the guides needed something to use for the annual tree festival, and I was happy not to have it back, as it had been in storage for the three years previous).
I don't really have Christmas traditions. I think that's mostly because I'm never that fussed about Christmas so I've always just kind of let it happen around me. I don't have an advent calendar (I think some of the ones on sale these days are just amazingly crazy) and I don't have a work party to arrange. I don't have a set plan of where I'll be, who I'll see and how I'll account for every moment of the big day (much to the annoyance of the lovely people who have invited me for dinner etc - I am aware that I'm being frsutratingly flaky!). In the past, I've looked forward to a day to myself, with no need to spend it with anyone else (although I've found that people do seem to react a little strangely when you tell them you want to spend Christmas Day on your own).
The parts I do like about the festive period? Well, I'm always happy for an excuse to shop and love nothing better than deciding upon the perfect gifts for the people I love. I adore buying (or making) something which I'm confident someone will be pleased to receive, and wrapping it up and giving it to them. That's one of the reasons I enjoy running my annual #bloggersecretsanta gift swap.
|Yoshi Christmas Decorations|
I love writing Christmas cards, but only the type where you can fill the insides with a little letter, too, and catch the other person up. A friend once told me that if you write fewer than eleven words in a card, it wasn't worth sending it and he has a point.
Christmas baking also fills me with joy - enhancing just about any recipe with mincemeat to give it a festive twist - all joking aside, I tried an amazing mincemeat sausage roll recipe, which I'll be searching for again this year.
I like the crisp, cold days that sometimes surround the festive period. One thing I do remember from being younger is taking the dog for a walk around the village in the days leading up to Christmas and seeing the lights and decorations of the nearby houses. That was something which used to make me feel a little more like Christmas was on it's way. Any walked where you have to wrap up in scarves and hats get my vote, as I enjoy the cold weather, and even better if it snows!
|Percy Penguin : Yoshi Bags*|
Another lovely thing is the kindness you seem to experience around Christmas. I've been making sure that I do at least one act of kindness per month - it was one of my goals for the year - but there seem to be a lot more of them about once you get into December.
I was pleasantly surprised by this lovely parcel plopping through the letterbox last week. Upon opening, I discovered this little penguin decoration and he's almost making me wish I had a tree to hang him on. I'm hoping that Percy's Christmas spirit rubs off on me this week..
How do you prepare for Christmas? Are you all about the theme, a last minute shopper or have you had the festive preparations ticked off for weeks now?