Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Finally Feeling Festive!

We have both been expressing our disappointment over the past few weeks that it really doesn't feel like Christmas - especially as we love Christmas so much! This is this case even though I (S) work in retail, and spend all day in a shop with a Christmas tree, fairy lights, festive candles and Christmas music playing! Speaking of work, we both absolutely love our new jobs, and are both doing really well, even both having interesting career progression opportunities suggested to us. It's really nice to feel that all the little bits of life are going smoothly (L keeps saying she can't believe this is all real, life is so lovely right now!), as we have worked so hard this year, and had a few hard times such as L's dad suffering a stroke, and me being made redundant. My job is only temporary, but I'm really enjoying being back in the working environment, and have been given more than double the work I was originally offered, so it's a good chance to earn money over Christmas. L is excelling at her new job, as her colleagues and I knew she would, I am really proud of her.

But, back to Christmas!

We put up our decorations on the 27th November - we usually wait until December 1st but as this year we would be in Malta for L's mums birthday until December 3rd, we didn't want to wait!
We have the same white/silver decorations every year, but usually add a few new ones to the collection too.

This year we bought a few new decorations for our fireplace and hallway.

But alas, it still didn't feel like Christmas! We pondered over a few reasons for this - was it that we put the tree up early; that we went on holiday to Malta; that we have been so busy at work; maybe the warmer weather alludes to a feeling of autumn and not wintery Christmas; or maybe even the fact that the Coca Cola advert has seemingly disappeared?! We also aren't buying lots of presents this year, as we have a lot of holidays / big events to save for next year, and feel that all of our family are grown up now, and all agree with us when we say that we would rather just spend time together over the Christmas period, and have a lot of really good food to share together than to buy presents. Also, if various plans go to well, plan, there may be a few tiny additions to the family over the next year or so, and so we may all agree a new rule to only buy for our various little ones, as they may soon be numerous!

As much as we are absolutely loving our new jobs, it came as quite a surprise to us when we realised that our last day off together was in Malta, and our next will be Christmas day! So when I finished work on Sunday, we had arranged to go for a Christmas-themed afternoon tea at a hotel in Birmingham that we had visited earlier in the year for a foodie event. One thing that seems to stand us out from other couples we are friends with / within our families, is our love of dating each other still. Getting a little dressed up, and spending a few hours doing something like drinking tea and eating cake whilst simply enjoying each other's company is something we have always, and will continue to love doing.

It is a really beautiful place, the decor very much to our taste, and their Christmas decorations would've fitted right in in our home! The white blossom trees lit up with tiny white lights and decorated with sparkly grey ornaments were beautiful. We were also rather impressed with the menu - the wide variety of tea available was numerous and interesting.

The food was absolutely delicious, and we both agreed on how simple yet effective the Christmas themed desserts of coconut and marshmallow chocolate snowballs, walnut whip Christmas trees, mince pies with brandy cream and mulled wine trifles were. This was in addition to the high tea staples of sandwiches, a gorgeous addition of welsh rarebit dip with warm bread, and homemade scones with clotted cream and jam. Gorgeous!

Since Sunday I have definitely felt a little more festive. We have finally done the Christmas shopping, and in fact started and finished it in the past three days! Those pressies are now wrapped and off to Father Christmas, our cards have been written and posted, and we have both made plans, together and separately to see our friends and families over the Christmas period. Now there's just the mince pies to make and a little more mulled wine to drink and then we'll be ready for the Big Day!

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