It is finally the most wonderful time of the year. December is upon us; streets are decked in dazzling lights, the cupboard is stocked up with spiced chutneys and chocolate liquor and there is already a light dusting of glitter throughout the house. When the first door of the advent calendar is torn open with the enthusiasm of a child, it brings with it excitement, magic and feelings of nostalgia along with the frantic rush, panic and overwhelming sensation to take everything in. I spend everyday after Halloween suppressing the desire to prance around the room to ‘All I want for Christmas’ whilst nibbling glittering gingerbread men fresh from the oven and sporting a thick woollen jumper adorned with jingle bells. Christmas is my guilty pleasure, my favourite time of the year and a time for me to indulge myself, my creativity, my tastebuds and create unforgettable memories with friends and family. But even in November I am constantly reminded that it’s too early. So, I plan, design and create in secret, until door number 1 is torn open. Then I release my inner child.
A very different Christmas
This year Christmas is going to be very different in my household. In fact, we are doing something that we’ve never done before. We are not doing presents. Yes, you read that correctly. Such a statement during the festive season might warrant confusion and shock, but it is actually a well thought out decision that is proving to be a brilliant one the closer Christmas gets. One of the reasons why there will be no presents under the tree this year is because we already have everything we want. My mum, sister and I already have enough beauty and bath sets to open up a spa, my wardrobe has now expanded onto two clothing rails and we are fast approaching the fine line between french country decor with a few scattered trinkets and…a complete cluttered mess.
The second, and most important reason is that we wanted to invest our money and time into something even more special than material items this year. So we have decided that this year, presents will be replaced with family experiences to be treasured. My mother, sister and I compiled a list of nights in, meals out, events, and a variety of ways to create memories that will outlive any gift.
So with such a unique Christmas coming up all about creating memories, I thought I’d post about my own Christmas past, along with some of the ‘Christmas moments’ my family are planning.
First christmas – Chubby cheeks and an expert at drooling!
Mums idea of a Christmas outfit vs my own!
Christmas was soon shared with my younger sister Zoe, but I made it quite clear who was in charge by insisting on wearing a gigantic, sparkling gold crown for as long as mum would let me. Here I’m showing Zoe plastic food meals in our Mr Blobby playroom, whilst sporting some white princess heels. Food plus fashion, some things never change!
Christmas with my little sister Zoe meant more toys all round!
Stocking time was always one of my favourite things about Christmas. As a child my sister and I used to wake up to trails of glitter and a sack full of presents sitting at the end of our beds, notice the word sack instead of stockings, they were quite literally bigger than pillowcases! We’d then use all our strength to drag them across the landing to my parents room where we’d empty out each present. The chocolate santa’s usually didn’t make it downstairs. I’m not ashamed to admit that this is a tradition that still goes on today!
A little further along the line and the presents were still in an abundance! Pictured: my mum, sister Zoe and myself.
A lot older and blonder I enjoyed a dreamy white Christmas in 2010!
2011 was the year I moved to London for university, so watching the Christmas lights turn on on Oxford Street was wonderful experience! It was also a year where my mum (who admitted to going overboard) spoilt my sister and I with endless presents and I got creative to make some pretty gifts. Read about my handmade mother of pearl button bracelet and chocolate slabs here.
There were so many incredible moments of 2012’s Christmas! London food markets, Laduree, Winter Wonderland, cocktails on Carnaby street and homemade decorations.
Last year was a truly spectacular Christmas, and one I blogged about a great deal. You can read about the festivities back in Somerset here, where I document the advent calendar I made for my mum, decorations, wrapping and Christmas sparkle! London also added to the Christmas magic when my family visited in December and it was featured in another blog post. The city really does light up around Christmas time, and the dancing lights in Covent Garden will always be a reminder of a special weekend. I also blogged about my firstChristmas themed afternoon tea party last year, which was a challenging success!
I cannot wait to share this Christmas with you too and over the coming weeks I’ll be posting plenty of festive recipes, crafts and gift guides. It’s going to be a very exciting month!