she says with eight sleeps until the big day itself, but for me it's really only true *right now*. i mentioned yesterday that london is looking very festive at the moment, making it hard to ~not realise the time of year, but for someone like me who essentially lives alone and spends the rest of the time between work, events, and restaurants, it's really rather hard to get into the spirit in the traditional sense.
i don't have decorations up at home, for one. ok, so i don't ~actually live by myself, i rent a room in another lady's house, and between both our active social lives, we don't see a lot of each other. this means that when i ~am home, i'm likely to be in bed watching netflix. we don't hang out together, there are no "shared areas" in the house (besides the kitchen and bathroom, natch), so there's been absolutely no need or time to do any decorating. last year we hung some tinsel up with about a week to go as i think we both felt bad that the house wasn't very festive, but that tinsel stayed up for months because neither of us were around to take it down.
also, neither of us were even around at christmas, so it was kind of a thing we did because we felt we should, not because we really wanted to. i'm not a big christmas person anyway - i look forward to some time off, some delicious food, and for being able to spend some time with the ones i love in a lovely part of the world, but i'm not sold on the traditions that are supposed to encourage festivity when i just have no-one to share the festivity with.
in saying that though, what's the one place i spend a lot of time with lots of other people? work. this year at work there's been no encouragement to decorate our departments with festive nonsense, no budgets to blow on tinsel, and with the exception of the bearded baker playing trial and error with us and his gingerbread man recipe, no christmas treats. so, when appleyard london got in touch recently to ask if they could send over a festive bouquet to help get us into the spirit of things, i was certainly in no position to say no!
chloe and i pored over the website and its delicious christmas range, finally settling on the advent bouquet that we felt would go nicely in the hot pink vase that was sitting empty on our desk, and bring just enough *bling* to the party. so it's maybe not the traditional christmas bouquet, but as a mad hater of red flowers, i really wanted to avoid them at all cost. there were some really pretty red and pink blended bouquets which i warmed to instantly (throw pink in the mix and i'm sold), but we worried the pink vase would all be too much. the additions of pine cones to the festive green berries and touch of silver foliage (which is clearly spray-painted, so be careful of letting it touch against any clothes or skin! we learned this the hard way..) was a lovely and subtle nod to christmas, that really has brought a bit of cheer to our department.
and then there were the mince pies that turned up moments later, thanks to the wonderful folk over at bettys of harrogate. you might remember the fabulous tea party of theirs i attended in the summer, well apparently that was not to be the last of the love from them to me. to help spread the word about their christmas promotion (free uk delivery on all baked goodies over £30 from now until end of january with the code JANUARY), they sent over some freshly baked pies to help my colleagues and i really get into the spirit of things!
so, ok, maybe it's one of those "better late than never" type situations, but thanks to some wonderful brands out there, it now really ~is beginning to look a lot like christmas. at work, at least. if you fancy grabbing yourself or someone else you know a lovely festive bunch of happiness, appleyard are offering a wonderfully generous discount across their range (except those labelled as "flowers by post") with the code BLOG33. you can even order right up until the 22nd with last deliveries on the 23rd, so if you're quick, you can make sure someone special receives something as pretty as we did this christmas.
a big thank you to appleyard london and bettys of harrogate for bringing some festive cheer to the workplace!