Hello my lovelies! My Christmas tree is up. My menus are planned. My germs are gone. My knee is back in ship shape. My cakes are nearly ready to be iced. The next few weeks are going to be ace. For some reason I’ve decided to try and get back on track with my eating and exercise. At this time of year.
As you can see from today’s pic my tree is up! I was a little skeptical when I put it together but I am liking it more and more each day. I made the fans years ago and I’m glad I kept them. They go great with the cranes. They also look a bit like stylised pohutukawa flowers. The phohutukawa is the “NZ Christmas tree” as it flowers at this time of year and is a mass of red and green gorgeousness. I tried to buy a box of fortune cookies to use but in the end I had to get the lovely woman at the asian supermarket to count out 20 from the basket of individually wrapped ones on the counter. She was great about it. She even gave me an extra one. It’s looking a little bare underneath – all the presents have been ordered but none have arrived yet! I kept the tree up all this year and tried to decorate it each month. But it was hard. Months flew by so quickly and I lost my enthusiasm for it. And when it was getting close to Christmas it felt less special. So this year the tree will come down in the new year and wait patiently until the season rolls around again.
I’ve worked out what on earth I’m making to feed the people in the next couple of weeks. I’m going to make a Paris-Wellington for dessert at Friendmas. It’s a Paris-Brest but with a summery twist. The ideal Christmas dessert. All the components can be made ahead. And it looks like a beautiful wreath. A vanilla-cinnamon and raspberry wreath of deliciousness. I should post the recipe if it turns out well. My cakes need one more dose of brandy before they can be wrapped in marzipan and icing ready to go to their forever homes. One small one will stay with me to be nibbled during January. Stretching the season as far as possible.
You guys. I am finally pretty much a healthy human again. My germs are well and truly gone. And a week of rest has my knee fully mended again. I climbed a big hill this morning and it was the best. It’s been a tough few weeks without proper exercise and it had started to come home to roost. Exercise is one of my important mental health maintenance activities. I can coast for a little while but it’s like a meter that slowly runs out and needs to be topped up. The combo of my streak of mishaps and the time of year has also killed my diet. So much sugar. So I am reshaping some of my Christmas baking plans to get things back on track. Fewer cookies and treats. More conscious choices. When I’m back home at my parents’ it’s easy. Everything is fresh and delicious. And it’s far away from bad choices.
Deck the halls. Share the love. Make good choices. Look after each other.