Sunday, 1 December 2013

Happy Advent

Welcome December! This is such a busy time of the year for crafters - making cards, handmade gifts, decorations for the house - this alongside everything that everyone else is trying to do too - buying presents, getting our homes ready for Christmas, going to parties and Christmas events (and trying not to think about those resolutions looming in January!).
Last year I was totally not ready for Christmas - my cards never got posted and there was a lot of last minute panic! This year I resolved to be more prepared. To that end I have already made good headway into hampers packed full of homemade jams, shortbread and Christmas fayre and yesterday I finished my Christmas planner and completed a four stage Tesco online food ordering process. Store-cupboard staples arrive this week, frozen foods and larder items next week, then fresh foods/vegetables etc.  the week after and then the turkey and other short shelf life fresh items such as fresh cream, milk, bread will hopefully arrive on 23rd December.  It feels good to have all this in hand - although a little ridiculous since we live within walking distance of a 24hour Tescos which will only be closed on Christmas Day. However - I loathe visiting the supermarket at Christmas time - they are crazy places packed with stressed people all panic buying.

I love my new planner which I hope will be useful for many Christmasses to come - My goal is to share both my planner and my Christmas Kitchen Countdown here and to see how much I can blog about them both in December. Of course thanks to having to do a class for the ATDML retreat at the end of October, my Advent calendar is already made...

Christmas Planner
I made this with a wooden blank book I'd had in my stash for a while and a set of Simple Stories Christmas papers from 2011 which I loved and wanted to do something special with. I added extra pages made from Kraft cardstock. Here is the outside to whet your appetite...more to follow as Advent unfolds.

Christmas Kitchen Countdown
I actually made this about 4 years ago - but without any photos. I do a lot of cooking and baking over the Christmas period and to me food and drink are really important aspects of the season. Some things I make year after year and I am always trying to remember which cookbook or website the recipes come from - I decided that a calendar of sorts for the kitchen which featured the recipes I would be using would be a perfect addition to my Christmas kitchen. I made the calendar from an 8"x8" paper pack I was given as a gift - (I think it may have been DCWV - but I'm not sure). The numbers are cut on the Cricut and the whole thing is held together with book rings and is hanging on a 7 Gypsies book stand.
My plan is to share each page and each recipe with you - pre Christmas stress permitting. Since I am still recovering from a virus that has wiped me out for the past 3 or 4 weeks it may be a big ask! The first page is a picture of last year's Christmas gift cakes...sorry no recipe with this one, since by 1st December my Christmas cakes have long since been made and are currently being 'fed' with brandy before being decorated.
I would love to have your comments on any of the projects or recipes I post.

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