With so much going on lately I haven't really had time to feel very Christmassy, but that all changed on Tuesday when we went to get our Christmas tree. We got it from a local lavender farm so they also had lots of lavender products, one of which solved Daniel's annual dilemma of what to get my mum, his grandma, for Christmas.
She loves lavender and he's previously bought her soaps, candles or hand cream but this year he has gone for scented reeds… it's OK, I haven't spoilt her surprise as she doesn't have access to the internet!
We also bought a beautiful heart-shaped lavender wreath for the front door that drew me to it with its decoration of purple baubles. So we got the tree home and cleared a space for it in the bay window and then began the annual moment of trepidation as you plug the tree lights in to see if they are working.
I have had this set for about ten years and it's one of the ones that has four separate cables coiled together. Three of the cables were working fine BUT the fourth was not, so every fourth light was out. We had to test each of those lights individually to see which bulbs had blown. It was a laborious process but worth it in the end.
This year we decided to have a tree without tinsel, so just the lights, lots of baubles and strings of beads – what do you think? I also decided to put a set of lights on the yukka to make it more festive in the dining room, and I bought some of those giant glitter-sprayed pine cones to sit in the fireplace.
We've also got tinsel in the dining room but we have definitely been more reserved with the decorations this year. One final touch: a wicker 'Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer' housing two primrose plants for the front porch.
I still haven't written any Christmas cards but I'll get onto it this weekend as I'm not working, and then the present buying and wrapping will begin in earnest next week. If you still need some ideas tune in to the three hour finale of the 'Saturday Night Gift Show' which is actually on Sunday (as well as three hours on Saturday). I know a lot of you have been really enjoying it over the last few months.
I won't be able to watch though as Daniel and I are going to the BBC's 'Sports Personality of the Year' show. Daniel really wanted to go as it has been such a fantastic year for British sport. There are so many worthy contenders for the title this year… who do you think will win?
I'm heading in to QVC shortly for our Gift and Give day. All the brands featured on air will be donating to their favourite charities from the products that are sold today. I'm on at 5pm with Kipling whose charity of choice is MacMillan, one of the main cancer charities.
Hope to see you there, much love Julia xx