Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Tuesday 9th December - Winter

So, the Christmas cake has been in the oven for 2 hours, needs at least two more.  Then I have to make a dozen or so mince pies for tomorrow.  I'm busy but it is all very satisfying and the house smells exciting.  Also, don't tell my husband but I bought a new decoration for the top of the cake yesterday.  I'll show you when I ice it which will be the weekend before Christmas.  In the meantime I need to 'feed' it some brandy.  Lucky cake.  Anyhoo, on with the Blogvent...

Winter Henry Robert Robertson
I wonder if the activities of this season serve two purposes.  Firstly, obviously you need food and warmth, but also by keeping busy, the dark and depressing nature of the season can be avoided.  It makes you feel like you are conquering the darkness, actively battling with the perils of the winter.  Look at this handy woman, sawing up the log.  She looks like she knows what she's doing.  I love the red of her headscarf, a little warm, defiant gesture towards the bleak landscape.  Surrounding her is evidence of her preparations for the season: a vegetable patch, the wood, her maintained house.  As the birds fly away and the sky darkens, she is ready for winter.

The house now smells wonderfully of rum-soaked fruit, slowly cooking in the oven.  Christmas is a multi-sensory experience, which sounds rubbish when you put it like that.  What I mean is that Christmas can be evoked by smell, sound, in fact all the senses.  What is more Christmas-y than the dark taste of alcoholic fruit?  The smell of cinnamon?  The feel of wool, soft against your neck?  My present suggestion is my favourite CD, one that makes me feel Victorian, Christmas-y and a little bit debauched...

Annie Lennox's A Christmas Cornucopia makes me want to pull on a green velvet cloak and dance in the snow while swigging back sloe gin. It's lovely, touching, jolly and rather unusual.  The rendition of God Rest You Merry Gentlemen is my favourite and is what Christmas should be like.  Brilliant stuff and this marvellous album can be bought from pretty much everywhere, especially at this time of year.  Enjoy!

See you tomorrow...

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