Friday, 25 December 2009

The Twelve Doors of Christmas

Today is Twelfth Night "The evening of the fifth of January, preceding Twelfth Day, the eve of the Epiphany, formerly the last day of the Christmas festivities and observed as a time of merrymaking". Tomorrow, I for one will be busy packing away the glass baubles in to their tissue paper clothes, for the next twelve months..along with the multitude of reindeer and forest of trees..I am sure a certain amount of procreation went on whilst my back was turned. There seem to be far more reindeer on the mantelpiece than I remember...

I could well be considered a bit humbuggy, as I itch to start dismantling the festive fripperies as soon as Boxing Day is upon us.. and have been known to fill the recycling bin with Christmas cards on this day. I do love Christmas and we have spent the most relaxing and stress free Christmas that I can remember for many a year ..BUT.. I long to turn the page to a new year, a new beginning .. a chance to put things right that went awry, askew.. just didn't happen ... during the last 365 days.
Whilst the people of Bath were tucking in to turkey and wearing silly hats, we were walking around our local neighbourhood, enjoying the unusual peace on the streets and the crisp bright day. Bathonians love to deck their front doors with a fine display of wreaths and I couldn't resist snapping just twelve of my favourites .. Each one representing the twelve days of Christmas....Which is your favourite?

New Year's Day was spent striding out along the Cotswold Way.. changing the rather stale scenery of television and the inside of my eyelids (lots of siestas) .. to the beauty of our local landscape. The "ground hard as iron, water like a stone."
The mercury has dropped even further today and I kicked myself for not taking the camera with me on a quick jaunt in to town.. with the delicate confetti of snow and a hoar frost all around.. the skyline looked stunning. I snapped these on my return home, as soon as the freezing fog started to lift and the sun made a brief appearance.
I have made a sumptuous meal of sesame seeds, chopped apple, peanuts, mixed flower seeds and breadcrumbs. Not part of my new year diet plan ( what new year diet plan?) but a meal for all the shivering birds out there. How they must struggle to find food in these Siberian conditions. Hearing the forecast for tonight.. 10 inches of snow for the south..Time to dig out those tennis rackets again!
Thank you for all your lovely Christmas wishes and cards. I do hope you all had a fabulous Christmas and managed to safely complete your journeys, to families and loved ones.
Wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous year ahead!

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Compliments of the Season..

Entering in to the festive spirit, a suitably pink sky dawned over Bath on the eve of Christmas...

It was not long before we discovered that our boiler had clocked off for it's winter hols and had left us in the cold.. with no forwarding address..

So it's a cold Custard household here today.. but that has not dampened our jollity. I can highly recommend the merits of hugging a cat when the heating system goes A.W.O.L.. if only the one available cat would desist in sabotaging my wrapping exercise..

The merry festive pot of chilli is stewing away in the oven to spice up our Christmas Eve.. all the presents are wrapped now, with the help of Pickles, and are under the tree waiting for the ever so restrained (cough !!!) gift unwrapping ceremony tomorrow..

All that needs to be done now is to wish you all.. my dear visitors, friends and lurkers.. a truly Happy and Peaceful Christmas.. and I wish you all a year of good health, wealth and happiness in the year to come..Much love from
Michele and the rest of the Custard household xx

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Happy Kitschmas

For those of you living in the east of England, you will have been blessed with a blanket of snow today.. and there is plenty more on the way .. but not for us in the balmy west ..alas.
What is it about snow that brings out the romance in the soul? I LOVE the stuff.. the fluffy flakes, the muffled world it creates.. and the clean white-washed world it leaves behind.
This was our hill last year.. more of a ski slope..

I have had to content myself with making my own winter wonderland, and this one won't thaw out until Twelfth night, when the kitschy collection will be packed away in tissue paper for another year..I can't help but think of our favourite Christmas film, the totally kitschy film.. The Grinch..there is a certain influence..methinks with the plastic reindeer and forest of trees..

So much nicer without Jim Carrey appearing amongst the collection .. don't you think ! ?
Well.. we are not exactly ready for the Christmas kick off next week..slowly but surely.. we are getting there. The marauding Master & Mr Custard, have yet to discover my secret cache of Christmas chocolate reindeer, snowmen and gold coins. Presents have been ferreted away in various corners of the house, even I will have problems finding them due to a defective memory.
Christmas cards have been made (since July) and almost all posted. Tree has been decorated, with the help of Santa's little helper..who was in serious jeopardy of being packed and posted to the first buyer, after sabotaging the lower rung of decs on the tree.

The Christmas day menu has been planned with military precision.. and whilst I am getting ding dong merrily on high...with a glass of fizz.. Mr Custard will be preparing a boeuf en croute for our din dins..The obligatory turkey and brussel sprouts will put in an appearance on Boxing Day when we visit family.
We might well be joined by our new visitor who turned up for breakfast the other day.. much to my utter delight and surprise..

He was too busy snuffling some fallen apples in the garden to notice me standing on tiptoes with my camera precariously perched on the bathroom window frame, snapping as many photos as I could take without scaring him away.. or dropping the camera on the terrace below.

Such a handsome beast and one I hope will return another day for more scrumping..
I must away now.. still ploughing through my Christmas card list.. and time is rapidly running out..
Hope you are all keeping warm and toasty.. and not getting too frazzled by the run up to the festive season...
A bientot x