I excavated the Christmas decorations today, but as I’m enjoying the winter season and this special time of waiting I have nothing Christmassy to show yet. Instead I’m baking bread, my third sourdough bake of the week has just come out of the oven and the sultana loaf from a couple of days ago was so delicious it’s been eaten already. I’ve started knitting a slouchy ‘Graham’ hat (free pattern available on Ravelry) using British undyed worsted wool. I’ve finished piecing 42 log cabin squares for a patchwork quilt but I’m putting these to one side while I adapt some curtains for our new cottage and try my hand at making a Roman blind. I was thrilled to discover the makings of five pairs of curtains in the loft this weekend, enough for all three bedrooms. Quotes for essential work to the cottage are coming in thick and fast so I’m pleased to be adopting a ‘make do and mend’ approach to the soft furnishings. I did receive some good news today which is that the stove and chimney are ready to go. At the cottage I’ve been pruning roses, sweeping gutters and cleaning windows while at home I’ve kept my feet on the ground tidying the garden to expose hellebore flowers and emerging bulbs. I’ve been making lots of soup, today it was celeriac and apple, and we’re still eating apples from the allotment. They are a bit wrinkly but taste sweet and fragrant. Talking of fragrance my garden is awash with scent from sarcococca, lonicera, viburnum Bodnantense ‘Dawn’ and Daphne Odora and on a sunny day like yesterday it was heaven on earth. With all this going on in the garden I can certainly wait for one of my favourite moments of the year – coming downstairs on a cold Christmas morning to the smell of a freshly cut Scots Pine or Norway Spruce.
Next week is time enough to prepare for Christmas, after all there are still two full weeks to go before we even start the 12 days of Christmas.