This week is one of great anticipation in the Tea with Ruby house as it prepares to be dressed to the nines for Christmas. Fresh things make an appearance each day as I go through drawers and cupboards discovering all the trinkets that have been carefully put away in January. The big finale comes with the arrival of the Christmas tree; resplendent and filling the house with that most familiar aroma that you seem never to tire of.
First to arrive is Ruby’s advent calendar, Nicholas who takes centre stage hanging on our kitchen door, pockets spilling over with goodies.
I really adore the Scandinavian way of decorating in Advent and all their curiosities like pixies, I seem to have adopted a few myself, our favourites are Ülf and Astrid. You’ve probably noticed we name most things too, they all become part of the family and our traditions.
I also make the most of our beautiful Victorian pine doors; wreaths adorn all of them. They seem to have multiplied as well and my favourite is my Caroline Zoob moss wreath that hangs over the mantle mirror.
I do enjoy making home made decorations and nothing can surpass dried orange segments. They look pretty as punch dotted around the tree entwined into the fireplace and staircase garlands. They are very easy to make. Simply cut oranges into slices, about 5mm thick, place on a baking tray and bake them in the oven for about 1¼ hours at 120°c. I usually turn them over about 15 minutes from the end as it give more of an even look. Leave them to dry completely (I always place them in the airing cupboard) then either sew some ribbon through the top of each piece and tie in a loop so you can hang them, or use florist wire, placing two overlapping each other and tie on the tree as if suspended on the end of each branch. Pomanders are good to make too, I think I shall try this one out this year from Riverford Organics.
I have lots of exciting things to do at the weekend, a Christmas market and a vintage fair in Saltburn. The fair is of course a For the Love of Event, pop in if you’re passing you may pick up a little gem of a stocking filler and you can have a cup of tea and a slice of cake too; extra special because the china being used is Tea with Ruby’s!
I am looking forward to bringing home all the wonderful things I will find especially the hand made wreath bursting with herbs and foliage, waiting to dress the front door. I wish I could take credit for this but alas not, something that I will learn to do one day, it has been added to the to do list!
Hope you all have a wonderfully festive weekend too.