Lifestyle Travel

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree…

31 December 2016

I absolutely love Christmas! I have been listening to my Christmas playlist on my commute to work since September and love anything Christmas related. My favourite thing about Christmas has got to be thinking of presents that my family and friends will love and me being a bit of an organised freak, I have been using an Excel spreadsheet to track which presents I have bought which people (and yes, it is colour coded…).

My first presents to be delivered were my nanny’s advent presents. My nanny does not get as excited about Christmas as I would like so to get her in the festive spirit, I started a tradition last year of buying her advent presents rather than just one present to open on the day. Thinking of 25 presents that she would like is quite difficult but it is most definitely worth it. I delivered the presents on the last night of November and my Mum and I came bearing a takeaway so we could all have dinner together once I came home from work.

IMG_20161130_212636.jpgBoth Anthony and Simon’s birthdays fall in December which means we have to wait until they are both over before we start decorating the house.

For Simon’s birthday, we went to Manor Farm Barn for a celebratory lunch. The restaurant has just re-opened following a renovation inside and I love the new look. There’s a lot more seating and it has a slightly more rustic look which goes well with the barn setting.


I went for the Barn Burger – a steak burger topped with hoisin duck, crispy bacon and mozzarella. The duck was the strongest flavour in the burger but given that I am a massive fan of duck, I really enjoyed it.


Broadditch Farm Shop opens up one of their barns each Christmas, creating the most magical Christmas wonderland shop. We go their each year to buy our Christmas tree and they have such beautiful decorations to choose from in their pop up shop inside.


Christmas elves put up fairy lights all around the barn so you really do forget that you are inside an old barn.


I of course wanted the biggest Christmas tree there but sadly Mum and Dad reminded me that we sadly do not live in a castle and so we would not be able to fit it through the front door.

We wandered around the shop inside the barn and I got distracted by all of the sparkly things.


I picked out my Christmas day dress..


I chose two things which were both unsurprisingly pink.


We left the tree in the garden overnight and then brought it in the next day ready to decorate.


With Anthony back from Bristol for Christmas, I was ‘forced’ to pick out a second Christmas tree with his family, such a chore!


We picked the Christmas tree from Layhams Farm Shop, the gentleman working there was really helpful and helped us pick out the perfect tree.

My love of farm shops combined with my love of Christmas meant that I was a very happy bunny (or reindeer to be seasonally appropriate) and I didn’t want to leave. Everything looked so festive and there were homemade jams in the sweetest packaging and ‘yummy cakes’, I wanted to buy the whole shop.


We spotted lychees for sale, I have tried them in cocktails but I’d never actually tried the fruit on its own before so we bought a bag to try. We had one each in the car park and loved them so much we went back in to buy the whole box. Apart from looking like eyeballs inside, they tasted amazing!


It wouldn’t be Christmas without a work Christmas party…


…or two.

For our team Christmas meal we walked to Hay’s Galleria which looked so Christmassy.


We went to Cafe Rouge for dinner and it was decorated with the loveliest French prints that made me want to jump on the Eurostar straight to France, although I’m not sure I could pull off ‘Parisian chic’ in quite the same way.


We walked back across London Bridge which gave us the perfect view of the lights from the top of the Shard.


I was so happy that Christmas Eve fell on a Saturday this year as I’m normally working. I had my hair cut in the morning and then Anthony and I made our way to Covent Garden. We are going skiing in February and so I wanted to treat myself to some new ski boots. The people in Snow and Rock were really helpful, the gentleman serving us measured my feet and got me to try on a few different pairs. Picking ski boots is really hard as none of them are comfortable as such – I wouldn’t want to wear them out for the day shopping – but the difference between these and the hire boots is huge. The most important thing when picking ski boots is comfort and how well they fit rather than look, but the pink gods were looking down on me as the pair I went for were also very pretty and girly.

With my new ski boots in hand, we had a look around the Kate Spade store and then on to Covent Garden market which was looking very festive.


We stopped to have a look at the Lego Santa’s workshop on display in Covent Garden.


We bought a bag of nuts each from one of the stalls and stopped to watch one of the street entertainers perform in the market, which involved the performer on a huge unicycle juggling with knives!


Once the show had finished, we popped on the train back to Anthony’s, had a super quick dinner and then got ready to go straight back out again for drinks with friends. It was nice to catch up with everyone and everywhere also has such a lovely atmosphere on Christmas Eve. We stayed at the pub to see midnight in and then went home to sleep (we obviously didn’t want to be awake for when Father Christmas visited).


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