17 November 2015

10 things to do before Christmas

With the Interior design course exam nearing I need a to do list for Christmas to make sure I get everything done. Here goes:

1. Buy or make and then send Christmas cards
This year I am printing out some cards with my illustrations on them. I love greetings cards, both hand made and bought. I really like these cards by 'Printstitchandpaste' on etsy. And it's always nice when people send a family photo with a festive message.

2. Make an advent calendar
I'm hoping to be able to make mine this year and have been looking for inspiration on Pinterest. (Hopefully I'll be able to update with a post about my diy!)

3. Make a traditional English Christmas cake
Do you have a trusted recipe passed down from your grandma? Or maybe you love searching the net for the perfect new twist to a classic cake. Why not do a bit of both. Last year we used this video by Tickly Mouth which is really easy to follow. Then we used my muickm's recipe book for the icing (click here for a similar recipe). It reached universal approval.
(for more recipes by Tickly Mouth see their youtube channel,or follow them on Facebook)

4. Buy or make Christmas presents
Well, everyone has a different way of getting this job done. You can buy from the internet (Amazon for books and dvds, Etsy for handmade or custom gifts, for a start). Go down the high street and pop into your favourite shops. Make everyone something special like a painting, a woolly hat, biscuits or homemade jam (see these ideas on howtobuildit.org).
For children it's good to get one special present and a few stocking fillers, because then there are a lot more things to unwrap, and that's the best part. So add a new toothbrush, socks, pencils or crayons.

5. Buy or find a Christmas CD, or prepare a playlist on the tablet
I love Christmas Carols (here is a link if you need to spruce up your lyrics!) and christmassy rock songs (read this article on Rolling stone for some ideas!) that you can have on in the background while your decorating the tree...

6. Decorate the Christmas tree and style your home
Choose a day and set aside some time to decorate in style. Invite your family or friends round, put on some music and have a cup of tea and buscuits while they all join in. Everyone has a different way of decorating a Christmas tree. You can pick a colour scheme, or you can use all the decorations you have and have gathered over the years and make something colourful. You choose. The only rule is have fun!

7. Organize Christmas parties or dinners with friends and colleagues
Take time out of your busy schedule to plan a few gatherings with special friends and your colleagues. Even just a drink before dinner during the first few days of December can be a nice way to say Merry Christmas to people who are special to you.

8. Plan big Christmas lunch (who's bringing what, who's house this time)
This part takes major planning... but not on my part! I am spoiled since the senior ladies in my family do most of the work! My mother-in-law cooks an amazing feast, my mum adds wonderful trimmings (you can find her recipes in her blog 'Cappuccino and brioche'!) and my brother's mother-in-law makes wonderful Italian dolci. But if you are the one doing the planning this article on www.netmums.com seems pretty helful!.

9. Wrap the Christmas presents
I read in a magazine that a great place to wrap your presents is on your ironing board because it's the right height so you're not straining your back. Try it if you have a lot of parcels to wrap... Make sure you have enough wrapping paper and string and add a little tag for the name. You can make your own out of cardboard and a piece of string, buy pretty ones on the internet or shop, or even download printable tags.

pintable tags, image via Pinterest

10. Take some time to think about love
Christmas is a time to focus on joy and love and to be grateful for what we have, to fill our hearts with love towards our friends, family and neighbours. Whether you go to church, have a gathering with friends, go for a walk with your partner, sit quietly meditating, now is the time to let the light into our hearts and allow it to fill us with warmth.

note: credits to images and links are under each photo.


  1. Well Lou this is really an excellent post, not kidding! Cheers! It's full of ideas, links and useful important stuff! ..it's reminded me we still haven't got an ironing board 😂 nevemind for unironed shirts 😃

    1. Thanks Charlie! How funny about your ironing board! xx