So, it's Christmas Eve already?!
Have you seen that meme that's floating around about "The Two Kinds of People at Christmas"? Well I'm very firmly in the Elf category - I absolutely love this time of year - the decorations, the weather (I'm a summer lover and despite the magic of a white Christmas, hot summery days just scream Christmas to me - what can I say, I'm an Aussie!), and the fact that people just all round seem nicer and kinder this time of year!
I have to be honest though, I haven't been feeling particularly festive this year, mainly because time seems to be flying and Christmas has just snuck up on me! This will be our first Christmas as husband and wife though (still crazy to thing we're married now!!) and I really want to get into the festive spirit and enjoy this "first" (even though it's actually our 8th Christmas together!)
I thought I'd share a few of our Christmas traditions - some old, some new - in the hopes that it will leave me feeling a little more festive and that it might give you some inspiration too!
1) Adding just a few new ornaments to our tree each year.
When we first bought our tree we didn't want to go crazy and buy all the decorations at once. Instead we decided to keep things simple and minimal and chose a select few special ones. I personally love the simplicity of the tree with just lights (particularly as ours has frost tipped branches which adds a little extra magic) and it's such a lovely way to remember each year and slowly build our collection, and as a bonus it means we don't have to find somewhere in our little apartment to store a crazy amount of decorations the rest of the year!
This year we actually received two beautiful ornaments as part of a wedding gift (the white lace glass one in the photo above). Last year we brought home some beautiful painted ones from a Christmas Market in Vienna and the first year we added those cute copper ones! It's so nice that these pretty little trinkets can trigger such beautiful memories!
2) Brown paper packages tied up with string
Any other Sound of Music lovers out there?
I've been wrapping my gifts in brown butchers paper, adding some string and a pretty tag (or even better a beautiful big ribbon) for a number of years now and absolutely love the look it gives. So classically beautiful and simple sitting under the tree.
Another plus is that you can re-use the ribbon (if you're with close family that is - maybe don't go asking your friends for the ribbon back!) so I don't feel like there's quite so much waste!
3) Baking Gingerbread
I usually do this every year and you can check out this post for the recipe I use. It's such a fun tradition that I haven't actually made time for this year but that I definitely intend to carry on in the future! (maybe that's why I'm not feeling super festive yet?!)
There's something so nice about being able to bring a big tin of gingerbread to share with friends and family (and I'm not usually a baker so this is kinda the one time of year I can actually do that!)
4) The Michael Bublé Christmas album on repeat
I love Michael Bublé anytime, but at Christmas especially I just can't get enough. I think Tom may be a little sick of it by now, but hey - it's Christmas!
5) Making my favourite potato salad.
I'm sure everyone has those foods that just scream Christmas to them and although this tradition is only a few years old it's one that will definitely continue. I'll share my recipe with you soon (it's a good one). Another food that that is just so Christmassy to me is my Nonna's special cappeletti (basically tortellini) that she makes on special occasions - SO looking forward to that tomorrow!
6) All the sparkles! (and red lipstick too!)
Christmas (and New Year) is the perfect time to crack out my favourite red lipsticks and sparkliest nail polish. I wear Essie's "hors d'oevres" every year and it is just the prettiest polish with it's mix of gold and silver glitter. It looks awesome on it's own or layered over just about anything (this year I've paired it with a pastel pink - Essie's "Urban Jungle")
The photos above are with just one coat on it's own and were taken at Christmas 2015. We'd just gotten engaged and on boxing day we went to have a look a rings! I thought I'd share a few of the ones we looked at. It was such an exciting time (how pretty is that one on the top right with three diamonds?!)
7) Secret Santa
This year my family has decided to do a Secret Santa as opposed to getting everyone gifts. We're all at an age now where we really don't need to be receiving a tonne of gifts so this is a way of stopping the excess and having a little fun in the process! My sister has organised it this year with a website called Secret Santa Organizer which allocates who is gifting to who, allows you to add items to your wish list (to make things easier!) and message your Secret Santa anonymously.
8) Christmas PJ's
I love wearing Christmas pyjamas to bed on Christmas Eve. It's a silly thing but just adds to the fun. If I lived in the Northern Hemisphere I would be all over the Christmas jumper tradition, but it's a little too hot for that here (and Christmas t-shirts just don't have the same feel!) so I'll settle for the PJ's! Tom has not got on board with this yet but I'm working on it ;)
9) Spending time with family
I've listed this one last but it's obviously the most important one of all :)
So that brings me to the end of this post and I'm definitely feeling more Christmassy after that.
Now it's time to start the prep - Tom and I need to make 5 Litres of brandy sauce!! Wish us luck!
I'd love to hear some of your Christmas traditions - share them with me in the comments below!
Wishing you a very Happy Christmas
Lots of Love