Friday, 11 December 2009

The Gaults get festive

It's no secret that I am not a fan of Christmas, I find it all too stressful, demanding, commerical and expensive. Each year I am sure I eat too much, drink too much, spend too much and generally get worked up because (quite frankly) my bloody depression and anxiety does not care that it is the festive party season!

Well, this year, the last in this house, I have decided to get into the festive spirit. Things are going to change, I am going to embrace the season and enjoy the colours, lights, gifts, friends and family and the love. But at the same time I am not going to lose who I am, I can (and lets face it I probably will) feel bad without the world crumbling down around me. I am not the center of the universe!!

So, yesterday I went Christmas shopping in Belfast. This year (as we have tried in the past) we are being careful with money in the knowledge that we have solicitors etc to pay in the New Year. I gathered up presents in a creative way, taking the time to really think about everything and how to acheive it manageably. Hence my decorations or instance (you can't really expect me to talk presents here, loved ones do drop in here from time to time!), I am using things I have collected over the years and when I think about it, a lot have been presents and some I have made myself.

Here is our living room fireplace. No, I didn't make that particular wreath but I am in the middle of one and tomorrow Andrew and I are going to the forest to gather bits and bobs for it. The silver dangly decorations I did make, as I did all the felt hearts on the tree. I found my little wooden bowl yesterday in a charity shop and gathered bits from the garden and a few old and broken decorations to make it into something special - I can smell the forest right now and unfortunalety, yes I am still allergic to conifer (darn it, I'm itchy all over!)

I'm also making a felt reindeer but I'm not so sure how that will work out, ahaha. Andrew has promised me that the oven will be fixed and then I can make my Gingerbread men, something I have done every year (almost) for the past 14! It's my own little tradition and I love to give them as presents and to have the smell throughtout the house.
After work, Andrew met me in the city center and we visited the Continental Market. Such fabulous handicrafts and food. Oh we just had to get a few Breton biscuits - so good. They didn't make it half way round the market. We had locally brewed beer in a tipi! I had the Hillden beer and Andrew had the Headless Dog (which was sweeter), there was also local cider , mulled wine, 'tipsy' hot chocolate and Molly's Chocolate Stout, all sounded very good but 1 half pint and we were off. Such discipline!!

See Christmas and Winter in general can't be that bad if I had a good day like that!

OH and I got an early present from Andrew ~ a tripod for my DSLR, here's a picture of Maggie taken with it, late in the eveing when my camera isn't at its best usually, or I should say I'm not at my best - long exposures - blurry. Is't she's so CUTE!!


  1. Ooh, Carrie, a tripod is such a perfect gift, Maggie is a cutie and I am sure there will be more portraits made now that the camera can be stabalized. Glad you had such a fun day too, it sounds quite joyous.

    So sorry about my black background making it difficult to see on my blog. It is the best for the photos to show, though. Maybe you could hold pieces of paper over the sides? I worked so hard to get it this way, getting the font large enough and the photos larger too was a real test for a non techy grandma. I do appreciate your coming by and that forgiveness thingey. :-)

  2. May your Christmas be stressfree and lovely. I love your felt hearts and I love that sweet statue of the couple on your mantle. What a cutie Maggie is.


  3. yay, Carrie's getting festive! I am such a fan of Christmas, I like to hear of these things! Lauran x

  4. Frances - Oh I know how long and how much effort it takes to get our blogs just how we like them. I just wanted to let you know that I DO SO LIKE your writings and photos, but can't read it all the time. I would otherwise be a regular. xxxx

    Oh Flowerlady how lovely of you to visit and leave a comment! Thank you for liking my crafty hearts (just finished my reindeer - more photos to come I guess). The statue on the mantle was a wedding present I love it. I'll give Maggie a tickle for you xxxx

    Lauran - how did I know you loved Chrimbo. Oh little Miriam must make it so special, hugs to her and you xx

  5. Yes it has been thrilling to do Santa shopping for the first time! Mind you, she'll probably enjoy the wrapping paper more - her favourite toy at the minute is a long cardboard roll I gave her when I finished a roll of wrapping paper!

  6. The fireplace looks great Carrie. Have you taken the gin off that angel ?? you spoilsport !! Looking forward to seeing your embroidered angel. Have a good week-end x

  7. Carrie sweetie ! My goodness you have so many beautiful decorations on the go for Xmas .. I have to get some spruce or pine boughs in the house so I can smell that fragrance too (I'm so sorry you are allergic to it .. darn !!)
    I love all that you are trying to do .. I know it can be such an effort .. but just think .. a new home next year : ) that is fantastic ! I miss the Christmas markets in Europe .. your description made me think of it a lot and how amazing they were : )
    A good tripod is wonderful ! mine is not so great and .. I hardly use it .. very naughty ? LOL .. love all of your pictures .. Maggie is precious where she is !
    Joy : )

  8. I think you did a great job with the decorations! I love the color of the wall behind your fireplace and your mantel looks great! I have a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit too - it's definitely not my favorite holiday for the same reasons as you, but I force myself (really force) to go overboard in decorating in hopes that it will make me feel better and it actually works!


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