While your boyfriend sits there pissing himself laughing knowing full well your hatred of them.
We said we’d still eat Whole 30 compliant during the week. We said we’d not touch carbs. WE LIED. I’ve eaten so many goddamn Christmas mince pies that I’ve lost count. I’ve scoffed cheese/chocolate/shortbread. EVERYTHING.
What’s on your Christmas wish list for 2016?
On mine for this year:
Any or all of the 312 books on my Goodreads ‘to read’ list.
A gold bangle
A voucher for a French cooking class
The will not to drink for the first six months of 2017
And a puppy
Really I’m not asking much. Seriously though, my favourite part of Christmas is the chance to relax and laugh with family and friends.
The man and I jetted off to the beautiful Czech capital of Prague this weekend. Boy was it freezing. Averaging -4 to 1*C (24-33 F) each day meant we had a grand excuse to pop into pubs and sipped mulled wine whenever we were on the move.
The whole city was beautifully kitted out for Christmas; twinkly lights, Christmas trees, Santas, huts selling hot beverages and ham. Hot roast ham! Everywhere! Everyone had raved about how cheap everything was, especially the beer. We were not disappointed; £1 beer! Although on day one we got a bit ripped off with the roast ham and somehow paid the equivalent of £12 for one plate of ham. Damn expensy ham, but so damn good with a dollop of mustard. By day three I was a bit over the food, I do admit. It’s all very stodgy: meat and dumplings. I was craving vegetables and the only thing on offer was pickled sauerkraut. Don’t get me wrong, the sauerkraut was yummy, especially alongside potato pancakes and spicy sausages, but steamed broccoli or grilled asparagus would have had me jumping for joy. It’s definitely not a city you want to visit if you’re eating a Whole 30 diet.
We walked around the city a lot, it’s small, so even though there are trams, buses and a metro we found walking just as easy. We wandered through the Old Town square, across the Charles Bridge and up the hill to Prague Castle. On our third day we went up the Town Hall Clock tower at dusk to view the beautiful square and lights below. We also did a bit of window shopping and drank beer in pubs whenever the cold got too much.
I can recommend Prague as a city break (if you’re in the UK/Europe) for a long weekend. I don’t think you’d need much longer than that to see everything, unless you’re a keen gambler because there seemed to be a Casino on every street corner! I also wouldn’t recommend going in January or February unless you love the cold – December was beautiful because of the Christmas charm, but I can see that Prague would be pretty as a summer spot too.
As an adult there are not many surprises left when it comes to gifts. So this year in a bid to get my other half something personal and romantic (proper mushy), I am surprising him with a homemade advent calendar. One of my good friends was browsing in Tiger when she spotted the DIY advent calendar and asked me if I wanted her to pick one up. I quickly jumped at the idea as whilst my other half is a full grown man, he has in recent weeks shown interest in the advent calendars at the supermarket that are aimed at younger generations.
I have decided to fill the 24 shutters with a note per day to say the many reasons why I love him (the mushy bit) and pair it with a small gift, chocolate treat or sexy coupon.
I love the way you say “sponge”.
The best bit is that we fly to Prague early in the morning on December 1st so I will wake him up with his calendar surprise making it all the more exciting before we hit the Christmas markets in the centre of the Czech capital. I love that he has no idea it’s coming and he won’t be expecting anything like it. I just have to keep telling him he’s too old for an advent calendar until the 1st.
Only a week and a bit to go of keeping this charade up, because at Christmas, you’re never too old to be spoiled and surprised.
Sending Christmas presents back to NZ is the biggest faff. I end up spending more on the postage than the bloody gift. Every year I say I’m going to spend more on birthday presents for my family, finding personal gifts for them on their special day. And I do. And then October (it starts earlier each year. When I’m 40 we’ll have Christmas carols in July) roles around and Christmas vomits all over London and I feel the desire to buy them gifts to send home. I even spoke to mum and said we’d take it easy on gifts this year, seeing as I was home for Christmas last year and took gifts. And then she messages me this week to say she’d popped something in the post to the boyfriend and I, so clearly we’re doing gifts and she’s broken from the original plan. Like, seriously, we’re all just swapping cash?! Don’t get me wrong, I’m no Grinch. Christmas is by far my favourite of all the commercially flooded holidays – I love giving gifts, finding something perfect for my favourite people. But the idea of hitting the shops in London to find said wonder-gift instils me with fear.
This weekend we have decided to brave the already-mad shoppers and busloads of tourists to get to Harrods. Mostly because I want to buy their Christmas mince pies and gorge on them before December even arrives (totally not Whole 30 approved, but I’ve done my 30 days and want to celebrate Christmas properly, in November AND December), but also because the older members of my family love the biscuits and tea from there. Plus Harrods have super cute baby things for my beautiful, new niece, who no doubt is going to win the present lottery this year.
All I want for Christmas this year is a packet of Tim Tams, a new Christmas jumper and for my boyfriend to sit through the entire Sound of Music film, while I sing along in anticipation of our trip to Salzburg at New Years. What’s on your Christmas list?