For many, Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. This season usually involves great food, a reason to decorate and bake more that is enjoyed with family and friends, hot chocolate, laughter, and cozy blankets. Candles are flickering all day as it’s much darker and the feeling of christmas is built up from more than just fancy decorations. Everyone can make the season special through memorable experiences, warm drinks, festive music, and wintery scents. Christmas spirit comes from whatever inspires you, to help create that little extra magic!
The kitchen smells of delicious apple clementine glögi (traditional Christmas drink) with Celine Dion’s holiday songs playing in the background. As it’s only a few weeks until Christmas, today has been all about decorating the tree! I absolutely love tree decorating and my style/ colour preference for the ornaments tend to change every now and then. Most often I prefer a markedly neutral colour scale to holiday decorating and table laying as I feel it gives a peaceful setting. I’ve never been a basic red person and warm colour spectrums are way too loud for my liking! I usually get an armful of greens (usually involving eucalyptus, thistle) that speak to me from my local florist or pick them from the forest (juniper/pine trimmings/ lingonberry twigs/ acorns/moss) and make wreaths and imperfect bouquets.
Often I prefer a more subtle nordic decoration and a very minimal tree but this year I wanted something for decadent and luxurious. The colour scheme I have gone for is very winter wonderland / fairytale feeling with hints of muted pink, crystal, glass and dusty white. I just instantly fell in love with the faint unsaturated pink that almost has a mixture of silver in it, so the tone becomes really refined and luxurious. I wanted mixtures of teardrop shapes and spheres with very delicate soft lighting. I absolutely love these feathered spheres with the detailed sequins on top and colourful features over the chrome. For those who want to keep up with the trend, a peacock petrol green or coppery gold is also hot this year if you want to go for something more unique! The two turtle doves on our tree are a symbol of togetherness that my hubby and I “copied” from home alone II the movie. Not only do we love the movie but the meaning behind the two doves being together! If you’re wanting an extra dose of that magical Christmas feeling in your home hang up a few extra strands of twinkling lights, bake a batch of gingerbread cookies, add a Christmas tree or make delicious warm cups of christmas drinks as you watch your favourite seasonal movies! Whatever your December look like, I hope they give you joyous memories!
Lastly, here is the recipe for a traditional Christmas drink that is a great substitute for tea in the evening and gives you that holiday feeling instantly. You can spice it up with alcohol if you wish for a more festive version!
Homemade Apple Glögi (serves 4)
|1 litre apple juice
||You need good quality apple juice that you gently simmer in a saucepan.
|1-2 Cinnamon sticks, 2 star anise, about 5 cloves and cardamom seeds, 2 clementines, a chunk of fresh ginger, sugar (optional)
||To this, add a cinnamon sticks, ginger and a couple of cloves, cardamom seeds and star anise. Then add the juice of 1 clementine, and the slices of another (remember to wash them well) and their leaves into the juice. I didn’t add any sugar, but you can add some at this point. Place a lid onto the saucepan and let it gently simmer and intensify in flavour from a half an hour to an hour.
|Ready to serve: garnish with raisins, almonds and clementine slices/ spices from the glögi
||Re-heat the glögi when served. You can add some apple cider/vodka/white wine/rum to the juice if you want a more festive drink for the evening!|