Five for Friday: Why I'm looking forward to Christmas

Amaretto and coffee in a snowman mugYes, I know. It’s stupidly early to be saying the C word but I don’t care; I love this time of year, the drop in temperature, the cosy nights and the run up to Christmas. Here’s why I can’t wait for Chrimbo 2011:

1) This time last year me and hubbles were preparing to get wed, so we pretty much missed out on the Christmas build up. We plan on more than making up for it this year though, and have already started taking amaretto in our coffee, watching festive films and planning where to put the Christmas tree. This year (having moved house since last Chrimbo) we’ll be getting a real Christmas tree from the greengrocers down the road, which we frequent every Saturday; taking my parents into town for the switching on of the Christmas lights when they visit from the shire for the weekend; saving our pennies to invest in a whole new set of Christmas decorations to complement the new house; and watching The Hogfather over and over again.

2) Our first wedding anniversary! We’ll have made it to one whole year of happy marriage on December 5th and we’re spending it here. Three days and two nights of just us, some relaxation, some Christmas shopping and tasty food. Bliss.

3) A trip to Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland. We went a couple of years ago in the pouring rain and while the weather didn’t put a dampener on it – no pun intended – it would be nice to go when it’s dry. We’ll do sightseeing in the morning, lunch in the afternoon and head over to the festivities of wonderland and top up on gluhwein and bratwursts in the German market, browse the trinkets on sale and show off our best hat-scarf-and-glove combos.

4) Ice skating at the local garden centre. I love Frosts – another sign I’m getting older, I love spending weekends in garden centres – but Frosts has a special feel about it and it has its very own ice rink in the winter, I’ve just doscovered. I actually hate ice skating and am beyond crap at it – I think my balance was thrown out at birth along with the placenta – but I’m game for a laugh this year. My reward will be a huge mug of hot chocolate and a few mince pies.

5) A festive baking fest! I make the best mulled wine on the planet, thanks to an adapted version of my mum’s recipe which I may or may not share at some point in the future. But this year I’m going to try mince pies – yes, I’m taking on pastry, how very ambitious, as well as some kind of festive chutney. Cheese and biscuits are going to make an appearance in my house this December and I want to be chutneyed up in preparation. Hubby has also pledged to make amaretto cheesecake and ice biscuits (yes, he’s a metrosexual and takes as much pride in baking as I do.)

Roll on the festivities! Ho, ho, ho!

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