Oh hey boo. It's DECEMBERRRRRRRRRRRR. Jingle bells and all that. Last time I wrote a Friday Favourites it was still old boring November but now we have made it to the almost end of 2016 (thank the lord) and Christmas is fast approaching. Like fast. Like the next one of these I write will be the 23rd...........
No one freak out.
1. Bath Christmas Markets.
Well this feels like a billion years ago even though it was the last weekend of November. Naturally it was probably the best bit of the last fortnight, even though the markets themselves were HECTIC and you couldn't really get to the stalls, it was just so so Christmassy. Walking around when the sun went down, looking at all the twinkly lights, the warm food, the music...everything. Even though the crowds were not the one, just the atmosphere and the day was the best way to kick off the Christmas period and we're adamant to make this a yearly tradition.
The second day of our weekend away was spent in the National Trust Village of Lacock. I waffled about my love for it in my photo diary but seriously, I can't even tell you how much I adored it. It was the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon walking and looking at crafts and peeping into bakerys and shops and chowing down on jacket potatoes and cheese to warm the soul. You don't need to be a member to walk around there if you don't go to the Abbey or Museum and honestly I cannot recommend a visit enough.
3. Girls Weekend.
Obviously this was the best best bit of the last two weeks. Me and my Mum went to Bath and Lacock for the weekend with two of our friends, my Mum's bestie who just so happens to have a daughter my age who I've known since I was a todd. We all live miles and miles apart these days and we try and get together once a year but it's just the best when we do. They're those friends that you rarely see, might not even catch up with all that often (busy lives and that) but when you're together it's like you saw eachother yesterday. It was just what the doctor ordered, a stress free, boy free weekend away with my loves.
4. Personalised Post.
So this was a fun surprise last weekend. Way back in about September I worked on these personalised Christmas cards, 60 A6 cards based on a nativity scene set with animals and dogs and cats from the family farm. They were sent out to the States in October I think and last weekend I received one in the post and it's SO lovely to get something you've designed that someone loves!
5. Advent Calendar.
Oh Steph. This gal. If you don't know Steph's World blog you need to get your sassy little butt over there because her Bloggers Q & A advent calendar is one of the best things of the last few months let alone the last fortnight. Basically Steph got in touch with me and a group of other bloggers last month and sent us all a Christmas questionnaire to fill out. Not only did she put them all together, edit, make promo photos and schedule them all she's also scheduling multiple tweets a day, tagging us all in Instagram promos AND she made a specific blog button AND made a graphical advent calendar which you physically click on to turn over and see who's posted on that day. I was day 6 (the gingerbread, my favourite icon) and Steph has put so much effort into it I can't tell you what a joy she is to work with and how lovely reading each post is.
6. Pinterest's Update.
So I don't know how recent this update is, if everyone has it, if just business accounts (which I have) have had the update but Pinterest has changed and I LOVE it. So basically I just clicked on one day last week and there was a new update saying I could select 5 boards to showcase my site. So essentially it's like a rolling Pinterest board at the top of your account below your bio and it changes between up to 5 boards and shows your latest pins and it looks SO sleek. I love it, I think it looks so professional.
7. Instagram Update.
Following on, the new Instagram update. The Instagram updates of the past haven't been all that pleasant (remember the algorithm? Lol of course you do) but this one is fabulous. It hasn't changed an awful lot but now you can reply to comments with the click of a button and best best best part of all - you can like a comment like you can on Facebook. So. Much. Easier.
8. Christmas Cooking.
Now I am not one for cooking or baking or any kind of major kitchen work. I am just not all that good at it but but but....last weekend LOOK WHAT I MADE. I'm doing these new Pinterest inspired DIYs so I wanted to try my hand at Christmas tree biscuits and I made them for the first time in years and years and they were divine. I've got a post coming up on the weekend or early next week on them so keep your eyes out for that one.
9. I'm done!
My Christmas shopping is done! I literally have a box of mince pies to put in a hamper which I'll buy closer to the day because of the sell by dates but other than that I'm all finished. I had a few bits and bobs to get and I managed to find them all in one place this week and the satisfaction of ticking everything off my to do list was so good. Now all it means is lots and lots and lots of wrapping (not that I mind).
10. Braving It.
Right so I profess to be a really confident driver and how aces I was when I first started driving and how driving at 23 not 17 was a good thing and blah blah blah. But. I have this complete aversion to driving in one particular place. In a town local to me, a town I drive through every single week to get to my Nan's but there's a Wilko there, one that I needed to go to for some Christmas hampers and paper (omfg they're so cheap though). But to get to it you have to drive through town a different way, park in a pay and display and then go up a big long steep hill to get out. It's nothing I've not done before somewhere else, it's nothing terrible, I have no idea why the idea of it stressed me out so much. So I avoided it. For an entire year. I used to make an excuse to go with someone else who was driving and I just really freaked out about the idea of it. But last week my Dad asked me to go pick something up there for him, something he didn't have the time to do and I had to do it. And I did it fine. And god knows why I stressed me out so much in the first place, it was absolutely fine and I felt pretty smug and pleased with myself.
11. Kirstie's Handmade Christmas.
I am all about that Christmas TV life and the festive episodes have started already. We bought the Christmas radio times this week and circled everything we wanted to watch but on Wednesday me and my Mum watched Kirstie's Homemade Christmas and it got me feeling so Christmassy. If you haven't seen it before, it's been on for a few years now and Kirstie judges crafting competitions, there's tree decorating and then she makes crafts of her own. Last night she made chutney and a dog jacket amongst other things and it gets me all kinds of inspired.
12. Deck The Halls.
Bit of a quickie to end (oh err sailor) but I always find when I write these posts I am looking toward to the next few weeks, and this time it's Christmas decorating. Tomorrow I am turning off the laptop, leaving the blog be and we're getting the decorating done. Me and my boyfriend are going to get the trees up and decorate the house and I'm going to cook a roast and we're going to watch Christmas films and I can't bloody wait.
Here's hoping you have the best fortnight in the run up to Christmas and the next time I do one of these little posts it'll be 2 days till the big day!