Sunday, 22 November 2015

Twinkle Twinkle



Something has shifted and changed over these last few days; in the weather, in the season, and in my mood. It's turned cold, with a biting wind straight from the north, talk of snow showers, and clear skies which turn from blue to palest violet, peach, pink. The last leaves are falling fast, leaving bare branches silhouetted against the sky and it feels like autumn just took a step closer to winter. And there is the whisper of Christmas not so far away now.

We went into town yesterday afternoon to watch the Mayor switch on the Christmas lights. After half an hour we went home, frozen, to watch Elf under a blanket in front of the fire. We didn't even wait to see the lights get switched on. It was still lovely though, to be out, surrounded by friends from school, in our new community. Today we walked along the harbour, all bundled up like little snowmen. Hats, scarves, gloves, the lot. 

I hung some fairy lights in the porch (I really don't see why they should be just for Christmas) and I love the welcoming glow they bring to the entrance to our house. Next weekend I'll be up in the loft digging out the advent calendar and wreath. At home, we've been keeping warm in the kitchen, baking gingerbread and shortbread biscuits, drinking many cups of tea or hot chocolate, doing a little festive crafting. The new washing machine has been delivered and plumbed in and it's amazing, so quiet! Our old one sounded like a aeroplane landing when it was in full spin - this one is so discreet I hardly know it's there, and it politely beeps at me to let me know it's finished. I'm sure we're going to be very happy together. Of course I spent a good part of this weekend doing all the usual chores too, but with a more of a spring in my step as I am allowing myself to feel the teeniest bit of festive excitement. Some dislike the early onset of the festive season - and I wont be buying a tree for quite some time yet - but I like it, I like the build up, the planing and the preparations. It's all about the anticipation for me.

36 comments:

  1. It's a lovely time of year isn't it, even if it is dark and cold. In fact that's part of the charm I think. Flickering flames and hot chocolate and blankets - wonderful. CJ xx

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  2. Beautiful house, beautiful things, beautiful photos. i love your blog. Kiss Kiss from Portugal *

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  3. Reading this, we could live in the same town. It's such a small world sometimes. Beautifully written and gorgeous photos! xx

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  4. Lovely post.Thank you for adding to my quiet anticipation - I'm feeling it too and it's calming rather than overwhelming xo

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  5. Same here, Gillian - after a very spring-like November, it has finally turned cold, and we had the first snow for this season yesterday. It made all the difference for me! I love Christmas and the Advent weeks anyway, but now I am looking forward to it all even more.
    Our Christmas Market opens tomorrow night - my Mum and I will go, listen to the Mayor's speech and have our first mug of Gl├╝hwein (my Mum) and first traditional snack (myself).
    Your pictures are beautiful as always! Love the change between homely detail and vast skies and sea.

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  6. Lovely photos Gillian and so glad you are enjoying your new environment. I love your fire, your hot chocolate and the beautiful harbour pic. Keep warm and take care.

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  7. Mmmm hot chocolate! I'm glad the weather's changed now, it was so unseasonably mild and I'm pleased my hat and scarf box is back in action.

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  8. What a cosy post! I really like the anticipation and the planning, too and this year has allowed myself to dig in a teeny, tiny, little bit already this November: candles, hyacints and a star here and there.
    Love your star mug!

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  9. I have a beepy washing machine too, which is great in a three story house as it is upstairs in the bathroom so when I am I the kitchen it gives me a little beep to remind me to put the next lot in! Feeling a bit down at the moment because our cabin had had some wind damage so we have the entire contents of the cabin at home all wet and scruffy - a lot of washing to do here too. Always good to catch up with your weekly news. Jo x

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  10. A lovely cosy post Gillian. There really has been a shift now, although, it sort of feels like a rude awakening. October and November have been so mild that this blast of cold seems to have just appeared so suddenly. As I walked to school this morning there was frost everywhere, but the skies were so clear and bright. I'll take that any day over consistent grey and mild.

    Have a beautiful week xxxx

    p.s ....and I think fairy lights should be for all year round. Matalan do some great little packets of battery operated light strings and seed lights which I have bought and placed almost everywhere on shelves. I've gone fairly light mad this year!

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  11. Hey Gillian,
    That beep will get on your chimes soon. I speak from experience. I shall be festooning with fairy lights, after my tri to IKEA next weekend. And I', getting a wood burner next year! I can't wait to have a mantel!
    Have a great week, lovely.
    Leanne xx

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  12. I totally agree about fairy lights - they're not just for Christmas. We're going to put some fairy lights on our trees in the garden - probably this weekend. Ease ourselves into December and all the festivities.

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  13. I'm so glad to hear that you are feeling more cheery. That photo of the beach is just stunning. I too love winter walks along the coast, and the obligatory cocoa afterwards.

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  14. I can vouch for the fact that the biting wind from the north is bitingly cold as it leaves! Hurray for festive lighting and hot chocolates.

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  15. Gorgeous, Your so right twinklies should be for all year round, there are so warm, cosy and inviting, especially at this time of year. That hot chocolate looks amazing, hope you enjoyed it.
    Love Gem x x x
    Gem'sCountryLifeDream

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  16. Twinkly lights! Toasty stoves! Hot chocolate! I don't like full-on decorating until much closer to Christmas but I do love a gentle build up. Your posts are so WARM Gillian. Just lovely. Sam x

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  17. Love all the cosy colourful corners in your house Gillian and your photo of the sunset over the harbour is breathtaking. Enjoy the slow build-up to Christmas, it is a very special time.

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  18. I'm some one who puts the tree up on Christmas Eve. Advent is a time of waiting not of celebration. We all have far too much and can no longer appreciate special moments and want them to last for ever. Magic appears for me without fail on Christmas Eve. Until then we enjoy things like carols and the very odd little bit of party food but if we indulge too much Christmas itself is an anti-climax. I love Christmas and enjoy it so much. I keep every one of its twelve days. People who start in November or even December are often so bored of it by Boxing Day that the tree is taken down and everything put away. I love Christmas to last, but in the time that actually is Christmas, and not be over-stuffed before time and be so over it before it is by rights finished with. So no, fairy lights are part of the magic of Christmas which is not November. Kicking leaves around and enjoying the clean crisp air is November. It's like opening a box of chocolates that were meant for your birthday and eating them all in dribs and drabs and then by your special day there are hardly any left and no special box of chocs. Anticipation is all.... which is why I like to delay it, not gratify it! Not until Christmas that is.

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    1. Hello.

      Thank you for your comment. I think it is possible to do both, to enjoy the build up through advent and cherish the period between Christmas and 12th Night, although I do find it hard to keep the Christmas feeling going past New Year's Day when we are all back at school and work.

      For many people fairy lights are a pleasant way to dispel the gloom and help counter the winter blues, especially after weeks of no sun, and not necessarily something that has to be associated with Christmas. And they're safer than candles when you have small children.

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  19. You are right about the anticipation, Gillian. Christmas Eve is my favourite day of the festivities.

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  20. I would love a quiet machine ~ can I ask which one you bought?

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    1. Hello Lynn, yes of course! It is this one:
      http://www.johnlewis.com/bosch-waq283s1gb-slim-depth-freestanding-washing-machine-8kg-load-a-energy-rating-1400rpm-spin-white/p1451070
      I have to say it does live in our garage not our kitchen though, so noise is slightly muffled! But still it's very quiet.

      Gillian

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  21. Bring out the fairy lights, throw up the tree! It is fun to enjoy all the Christmas build up....it is the best birthday bash in the world after all! Love your hot chocolate pic...going to keep my eye out for pink marshmallows. They look cute. And thanks for posting pics of your ordinary everyday....the picture with the iron board reminded me that I must get the ironing done right after I post this comment! Almost forgot about it! Happy advent!

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  22. Hi love the cosy pictures you capture everything so well and of course the fairy lights! I noticed your long curtains in I think your dining area they look lovely are they a recent purchase if so where from ? I desperately need some for my patio doors but can't decide what to get I enjoy looking at what you've done to your house as mine is of a similar age.

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  23. Hi love the cosy pictures you capture everything so well and of course the fairy lights! I noticed your long curtains in I think your dining area they look lovely are they a recent purchase if so where from ? I desperately need some for my patio doors but can't decide what to get I enjoy looking at what you've done to your house as mine is of a similar age.

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    1. Hi Chrissie, thank you. They were from Ikea but two or three years ago - we brought them with us from our old house. Cheap and cheerful!
      Gillian

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  24. I'm with you here, I definitely enjoy the run up to Christmas and I like the gradual introduction of bits and bobs before going all out in December. I've also been making use of my fairy lights. They are my new way to bringing cheer to dark gloomy winter mornings and dizziness to dark winter evenings. Love them for that and definitely not just for Christmas here!

    S x

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  25. Such cosy photos; you do have a lovely home. I've just bought some fairy lights to brighten up the dull afternoons and they are very definitely winter lights, not Christmas ones! Having looked at that last photo, I'm just off to make some hot chocolate! Enjoy the rest of the week. xx

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  26. Such a lovely cosy time of year isn't it, I quite agree with the fairy lights being put up through out the year. I shall try and forget to put some away. I love the run up to Christmas, all my decs will be up on the first but the new additions have been left out. I have had a rather splendid nutcracker on the hearth for more than a month now! Hope you have a super week x

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  27. We had to start preparing for Christmas early this year because we have a baby due in December. I think Christmas should start when you want it to start. After seeing your fairy lights i'm going to put mine up, they look so cosy! xx

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  28. Hi Gillian, Can I ask where your hall table is from? It is just what I am looking for! Your home always looks so lovely. xx

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    1. Hello, that's so kind of you, thank you. It's the Radius console table from habitat. We bought it in 2005 so it's ten years old now but I still love it and it holds up to the wear and tear of family life very well. I don't think habitat sell them anymore but you could try eBay.
      Gillian

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  29. I love lights too...I think they should be obligatory from at least November until the clocks change in March. I remember travelling to New York years ago at the end of January and nearly all the trees had white fairy lights on them...magical. Anticipation is the best bit about Christmas and all your family traditions. Enjoy. Barbara

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  30. I love christmas lights as well. It makes the whole season so special. Here in Germany, lots of towns have stars made out of christmas lights as the town lamps which makes evening walks so special!

    Take care
    Anne
    Crochet Between Worlds

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  31. Anticipating Christmas as well, but I agree that those colorful lights should be on all year round. Your home looks simple yet so... yes, happy. And that's the most important thing, right?

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