It’s that time of year! You can see my past ABCs of winter here: 2016, 2015, 2014, and 2013. Last winter we had our honeymoon in Thailand to look forward to, so I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I wasn’t the least bit bummed out that there’s no tropical escape looming ahead this year!
Advent calendar races. Every year, Sam and I both get an advent calendar and each morning we “race” to see who gets the chocolate out first. We keep a tally on the fridge and whoever has had the most individual wins is the overall winner. I’ve been victorious the past three years now, so I’m feeling pretty confident.
Birthdays. Sam is a Christmas baby. (Literally born on Christmas day.) So there’s a lot of pressure to make Christmas a good one!
Cooking a vegan Christmas. One of the friends we are spinning Christmas with is a no dairy vegetarian so it’ll be my first time cooking such a massive plant-based meal. If you have any tips on making vegan Yorkshire puddings, I’m all ears.
Decorating. Last year we didn’t get a tree as we were still trying to make our house habitable. (Though we moved to York in November the landlord was still doing lots of bits to it well into December.) This year we won’t be getting a tree as I’m convinced Harold will pull it down (plus we won’t be here for Christmas) but I’ll decorate in other ways.
Exploring the Cotswolds (where we’ll be for Christmas). I’ve seen bits and pieces (like Burton-on-the-Water) so I’m looking forward to seeing more.
Friendmas. We are bucking tradition somewhat this year and we’ve split the cosiest little Airbnb cottage with friends this year for Christmas.
Gingerbread baking. For as much as I love baking, I’ve never been satisfied with my gingerbread men. This year, I will conquer them.
Hot Chocolate (and hot beverages in general) Oatly is a killer milk substitute in hot chocolate.
Ice skating. One of the biggest rinks up North is outside of York. We didn’t go last year, so hopefully this year we might get the chance. To be honest, I find skating 25% fun, 75% terrifying, but in a good way.
Kindness. Generosity in others and humankind seems to come out more during the holidays and it can be inspiring to see.
Lights. The soft sparkle of twinkly fairy lights is so wonderful. Sam and I actually left ours up inside for several months last year and I’m excited to hang them again.
Markets. I’ve already been to the Christmas market in York this year, but I’d like to try to get along to Leeds and Manchester. Or even London!
Nights in. Life gets so busy so for me, one of the best things about winter is the increased acceptability of getting to be housebound.
Open fires and the cosy woody smell coupled with gentle waves or warmth. It’s a recipe for a delightful nap.
Prepare for the Life in the UK test
Quiet mornings and frosty country walks
Ringing in the New Year
Snow. Could a white Christmas be in store for us this year? I’d absolutely love it. As long as it’s not occurring during our drive for friendmas!
Traditions, like decorating our annual Christmas eggs or our advent calander races.
Urge each other on in the hunt for a house. Sam and I have both (and usually at separate times) become really disillusioned with ever finding a house we can afford to buy, but hopefully 2018 will bring us luck.
Valentine’s Day. It’s ages away, but it’s one of the few things to look forward to after New Years eve. I find January-February to be so unbearably bleak that I need something to look forward to and cheer me up. Even if it’s something as cheesy and commercial as Valentine’s Day.
Watching Christmas films. From Harry Potter film marathons, to Christmas classics, it’s a great time of year to curl up and watch something.
Xylophone band winter concert. The Christmas tunes are especially good.
Yuletide cheer. It’s a bit of a cliche, but when everything is sparkley and festive the world seems a big more magical.
Zzzzz…winter is the best time to catch up on some snooze underneath a cozy duvet.
What’s on your list?