Every year we give gifts on a theme. Last year it was music, the year before was literature. The year before that was the last year I gave handmade gifts as Daisy and then Felix started to fill up my life. This year I am going back to that as I love the feeling of creating stuff for people and knowing they have received something really unique. I have drawn a lot of inspiration from the Sew Mama Sew Handmade Holidays posts this year so rather than baking a lot of stuff I am sewing instead. I have a lap top bag underway (based on the dish towel tote), owl appliqué coasters, a pillow case dress, an iPod cosy, and a notebook and pencil holder just to name a few. I can't do pictures yet as a few of the recipients do read this blog. What do I want this year? I'm always up for Spotlight or book store vouchers from people who are genuinely stuck for ideas on what to give me. I have a large number of books on my Amazon wish list so I'd definitely find at least one of them in a book store here.
My family's Christmas tradition used to be to go to Grandma and Grandpa's but sadly they are both gone now. This year we are holding Christmas at my house and I hope to start some new traditions with my kids and their cousin. Making a tree ornament each year is something I am keen on so Daisy made a little ornament out of salt dough and painted it - Felix can do one next year.
The thing I used to love most about Christmas was seeing my family as I have spent most of my adult life living in a different state. Now that the whole family doesn't gather at my Grandparents anymore I don't see them so that is a shame. I really miss my grandparents and this Christmas is going to be particularly hard with both of them gone. Now Christmas is about remembering which side of the family we are spending Christmas day with (my family or Chris') and working out how we are going to afford all the travel. We have a tree up for the first time ever as Daisy really 'gets' Christmas now, and we'll probably put up some decorations around the house too. I have to find my Christmas card spreadsheet and update that so we get our cards out on time and to the right addresses and I need to take a nice photo of the kids to put inside the cards too.
My favourite Christmas food? Prawns. Fresh Australian prawns cooked on the BBQ and a bit of Thousand Island dressing. And a big bowl of fruit salad after all the meats and salads is always a treat. I'm thinking of doing a pavlova this year so I get to have fruit and cream and meringue all at one time. I don't have any recipes to share as we don't really cook on Christmas Day. I'm in Australia so it is the start of Summer here and it has already started hitting 37C so it's definitely going to be a hot one this year. Sliced cold meats (ham and chicken) plus crisp salads and some cold seafood (prawns an maybe crayfish) will be our Christmas fare, with icy cold soft drink and blended fresh fruit juices.