Tag Archives: Christmas

Christmas Shop Windows 2018

When we were children every Christmas we would go shopping into the “West End.” My parents would do the majority of their Christmas shopping on these trips. But for my sister and I, it would be an adventure to enjoying the sights. I have so many memories from these trips, spotting all the amazing windows displays in the shops. And the smell of the vendors selling chestnuts. But best of all, these adventures always ended with us sitting on the top deck of the bus looking at all the Christmas Lights along Regent Street and Oxford Street!

Harrods

Hamley’s window was always my favourite as a child

I have noticed a lot of bloggers have been sharing their experiences of the Christmas Lights and shop windows this Christmas season. So I thought I would join in the fun and share some of the window displays from my favourite shops in London.

My Favourite Shop Windows from Christmas 2018 in London!
House of Minalima

Miraphora Mina & Eduardo Lima are the graphic designers who designed all the artwork featured in the Harry Potter series, and the Fantastic Beast movies. Their art shop and gallery, House of Minalima have my favourite window display! Based on their graph of the iconic Hogwarts acceptance letter. The window features, letters, wax seals and a parliament of owls!

Still waiting for my acceptance letter

Inside the gallery, they have added a few cute Christmas touches. Stockings hanging over the fireplaces and Christmas trees decorated with hints of from the Harry Potter franchise. The gallery also includes artwork from Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindlewald. So even if you have been to House of Minalima it’s a great time to re-visit.

Elizabeth Street

I went to Belgravia hoping to snap a few photos of the Insta-famous cafes in the area. I did not expect to find a whole street filled with beautifully decorated shop windows. Obviously, Peggy Porschen and Dominque Ansel upgraded their floral displays to a wintery theme. However, all the boutique were decorated. Even the local estate agents had an amazing display!

Carnaby Street

All the major shopping thoroughfares in London have impressive Christmas Lights! However, the award for best lights this year has to go to Carnaby Street. To coincide with the release of Bohemian Rhapsody. The lyrics to the classic Queen song illuminate the famous shopping street.

At Night
Not really Christmassy

Whilst shopping this year, I saw several cute windows that weren’t decorated for Christmas but I think they still deserve a mention because they were amazing.


Forbidden Planet’s Doctor Who Display

Baby Nifflers at The Noble Collection!

Mary Poppins themed window in Harvey Nicholas

Do you like going to see the Christmas Lights?
Do you have a favourite Christmas window?
Let me know in the comments below.

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Christmas Eve Box for Adults

Without a doubt, the most popular post on my blog has been the one about our Christmas Eve Box. Even in the summer months, it is the most searched item on Google. So I have decided to update my post for Christmas 2018. And give you a sneak peek at some of the items I’ll be adding to our Christmas Eve Box this year.

New Traditions

In our twenties, the first few years whilst Jason and I were dating we would have Christmas dinner with our own families apart. However, we would spend Christmas Eve together. A lot of Jason’s old school friends returned to their hometown over Christmas, So they had their own tradition of meeting up on Christmas Eve for drinks in town. Over the years, their partners started joining in the tradition. For several years, we would all spend Christmas together. Having a few drinks and catching up on the events of the past twelve months.

After we got married, this tradition started to die down. A few of the friends moved abroad, also got married, had children. And so all our plans began to alter. Then several years ago, Jason’s parents moved away from his hometown. So all our Christmas traditions changed. Now, we started spending Christmas Eve at home. Hence, why I started the tradition of our Christmas Eve Box!

Aren’t Christmas Eve Boxes meant for kids?

Technically, yes! Christmas Eve for families with children involves getting ready for Santa to arrive. The Christmas Eve boxes are designed around this. So, the box will tradtionally contain food for Santa and his reindeer and even a magic key if you don’t have a chimney! Plus, some form of entertainment for the evening and some new pyjamas to encourage the kids to go to sleep. However, as we are normally at home on Christmas Eve, counting down to the big day. I decided to add a twist to the tradition. After all, why should children have all the fun? 

As Christmas Day is normally quite busy and involves a lot of cooking. The night before, we like to order a pizza, make a few cocktails and watch Christmas Movies! We tend to watch the same three movies, The Muppet’s Christmas Carol, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and Die Hard.  In previous years, I have brought copies of these movies and included them in the parcel. However, now I tend to buy a Blu-ray which has recently been released. This year it is Ant-Man and The Wasp

Christmas Eve Box for Adults!
Christmas Eve Box 2018

His Pyjamas // Her Pyjamas // Ornament
Blu Ray // Popcorn Maker // Prosecco Set
 Chocolates // Candle 

Like the children’s versions of the Christmas Eve Box, I like to include new pyjamas, some sweets and popcorn. But as I have mentioned before instead of cookies, I add cocktails! I have added a few Christmas cocktail recipes to my Christmas Eve Pinterest board, which we will try this year. But normally, I buy pre-mixed cocktails!

I also include a new Christmas ornament for our Christmas tree, something relating a movie or event from the last 12 months. This year, I was looking for a decoration relating to Avengers: Infinity War. But this 10 year anniversary one is amazing! The final thing I include is a Christmas Candle! Like The White Company’s winter scent as it is one of my favourites!

Christmas Eve Box 2018
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100cupsofcoffee 91-95

100 Cups of Coffee

I guess the subheading for this post could be “Red Cup Season Coffees.” As all the coffees were from the end of last year and are all festive coffees from different coffee shops around West London.

Red Cup Season 2017

Red Cup Season.

Once Pumpkin Spice Latte season is over, it’s time to move on to the Gingerbread Lattes! As always, in the first day of Starbucks Red Cup season, I head to my local store for my gingerbread latte fix! Then I know Christmas is around the corner. Soon after that, I try their new Christmas drink, this year’s Festive Cold Brew was nice. But I tended to stick to the hot drinks in the colder months.

V&A Christmas Cups

Next up it is time to check out the seasonal variations from other coffee shops and their seasonal cups. Hands down the prettiest cups this year were from Caffè Nero. Inspired by artwork from the V&A museum.

Notes

Without a doubt, my favourite Festive coffee drink this year was from Notes Coffee. Oddly, I don’t like traditional Christmas Cake, but their Christmas Cake Latte was amazing! The seasonal spices from the cake without the dried fruit.

Pret Reindeer

After, the success of the Christmas Cake Latte, I thought I would try the Mince Pie Latte from Pret a Manger. Whilst the drink was nice. I was put off by the addition of pieces of mince pie in the drink. Similar to the gingerbread crumbles in the Starbucks drink. These toppings taste like crumbles biscuits in the bottom of the drink and ruin the experience.

Red Cup Season.

Finally, on Social Media, everyone seemed to be ranting about the Honeycomb Latte from Costa Coffee. Normally, I avoid Costa, as I don’t like the taste of their coffee. But I was pleasantly surprised by this seasonal drink. Unfortunately, I didn’t discover it until just before Christmas.

What is #100cupsofcoffee? You can read about the project here.
You can see all the photos from the #100cupsofcoffee project on Instagram.

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Updated Christmas Eve Box

A few years ago, I wrote about our adult version of Christmas Eve box. Our Christmas Eve tradition now involves relaxing at home, ordering a takeaway and having a few drinks. A calm night before the big day. So I create a special parcel for the evening. Think of it as a grown-up version of the boxes designed for children. The box is filled with pyjamas, movies to watch and cocktails!

This Year’s Christmas Eve Box

Christmas Eve Box

Deadpool Pyjamas // Wonder Woman Pyjamas // Espresso Martini // Book
Ornament // Cocktail Set // Box

Each year, I like to add a new ornament to our Christmas tree, something related to the previous 12 months, a souvenir from a vacation, something a little more personal. Or like this year, a geeky one relating to one of our favourite films of the year. I love this Wonder Woman Ornament kit from LexiCorp.

A recent UK Poll recently declared Die Hard isn’t a Christmas movie, well in our house we disagree. Our traditional Christmas Eve movie night involves a trilogy of Muppet’s Christmas CarolNational Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and ends with Die Hard. When I saw this illustration book based on Die Hard featured on Nerdist, I had to order a copy to include in the Christmas box.

As you know I am a coffee addict and an Espresso Martini is my go-to cocktail. Unfortunately, I am can’t see to perfect my recipe to make them at home. I have a few tried pre-mixed cocktails, but this year I thought I would try the Tipplesworth mixer. I also love this Espresso Martini gift set, which includes a cocktail shaker and martini glasses.

Do you have any traditions for Christmas Eve? What are your favourite Christmas Movies? Do you think Die Hard is a Christmas movie? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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6 on 6 Red

6 on 6 - Red

I am posting my final photos in the 6 on 6 series, red for December. Like my gold photos for November, these have a Christmassy theme. A lego Santa, and Starbucks red cup. I have also added an Electra Tsum Tsum. The Harley Quinn Funko, was a Halloween gift as past of the Geek Girl x Bloggers group from the Funko Queen dePepi.

The final photo in my red themed #SockSunday photo I took on Instagram. Featuring the Red Queen book, a red cup and my 2 luv crew socks I knitted years ago. These are my favourite socks that I made, that I tend not to wear them, which is why I think they don’t have holes in them.

6 on 6 - Red
Lego Santa

6 on 6 - Red
Electra Tsum Tsum

 

6 on 6 - Red
Harley Funko

6 on 6 - Red
Red Post Office Box!

6 on 66 on 6 is a monthly photography challenge started by the Scruffy Little Nerd Herder #6on6

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6 on 6 – Gold

I loved taking part in the 6 on 6 photo challenge last year. Unfortunately, In November I didn’t have time to take any “gold” photos. So in took them in December and did not have get around to post them to the blog. But seeing as I enjoyed the project I figured I would post them now to complete the challenge, even if they do include some Christmas photos!

I couldn’t include a tsum tsum in these photos, I incorporated my C-3PO tsum tsum in the July (he still looks yellow not gold to me). I have included Star Wars iconic golden droid. From the cover of my moleskine journal and Santa version (from 2015 Lego Advent calendar).

I mentioned before, how I love charm bracelets, this is my newest version which only has a few charms. I stopped wearing glasses 10 years ago, but sometimes still miss it. This “glasses” ring is a way for me to show my nerdy side.

6 on 6 - Gold
Charm Bracelet

6 0n 6 - Gold
“Nerdy” ring

6 0n 6 - Gold
Washi Tape

6 0n 6 - Gold
2016 Journal

6 0n 6 - Gold
Santa C-3PO

6 0n 6 - Gold
Baubles

6 on 66 on 6 is a monthly photography challenge started by the Scruffy Little Nerd Herder #6on6

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A Merry Fictional Blog Challenge!

A Merry Christmas BLog Challenge

Katy at Oh So Geeky has put together this fun Merry Fictional Blog Challenge, to spread some Christmas cheer online. It’s not too late to join in you can get all the details on her blog.

Advent Calendar: Traditions you celebrate during December?
Our traditions start over the first weekend of December, my in-laws have a tree trimming party. Most of the extended family come over. This marks the start of the holiday season for us. The rest of our traditions are pretty boring, I always put together a Christmas Eve Box, we have a movie night at home with cocktails.

When my dad was alive we would go to the cinema on Boxing Day. When the Lord of the Rings or Hobbit movies were released we saw them or the most recent Bond movie. Last year, my mum, sister and I went to see The Force Awakens and this year we will be seeing Rogue One. So I guess watching Star Wars on Boxing Day will become a new tradition.

Carols: What’s your favourite song(s)?
“Christmas Wrapping” by The Waitresses
“Fairytale in New York” by The Pogues featuring Kirsty MacColl

Coal: A naughty character you’d send coal to?
Kylo Ren – he can add the coal to that Darth Vadar shrine.

Fireplace: Favourite Christmas movie that melts your heart?
Love Actually. But I love any variation of A Christmas Carol, especially the Muppet’s version!

via GIPHY

Gingerbread: What’s your favourite holiday snack?
Mince Pies!

Hot Cocoa: What’s your favourite drink?
Gingerbread Lattes!

Mistletoe: Character you’d like to meet under the mistletoe?
Sherlock

Mittens: A cozy outfit that keeps you warm during winter?
I love wearing hats in this weather, oh and my comfy boots.

Naughty: Three characters who’d make the Naughty list.
Littlefinger from Game of Thrones
Neagen from The Walking Dead
The Joker

Nice: Three characters who’d make the Nice list.
Jyn Erso from Star Wars: Rogue One
Eleven from Stranger Things
All the Stark children from Game of Thrones


via GIPHY

North Pole: If you could spend Christmas anywhere (even fictional), where would you go?
I would love to spend Christmas on the beach or even in Las Vegas!

Presents: A book or movie on your wishlist?
The Brotherhood Trilogy (Noel Clarke’s films) and The Harry Potter Illustrated Editions.

Rudolph: What’s your favourite TV holiday special?
It would have to be Doctor Who. Maybe Voyage of the Dammed or A Christmas Carol.

Santa: A character you’d love to exchange presents with? What would you get them
Batgirl! I would buy her a funky phone cover, or some decals for her laptop.

Scrooge: A villain you’d help see life in a different way?
Darth Vader

Snowflake: Something that makes you feel special.
Being with my friends and family, or just getting messages from them over the Holiday period.

Tree: What do you decorate your house with for the season?
Our family room is decorated quite traditionally, with a tree and a garland over the mantel. In our bedroom we have a Star Wars theme!


Yuletide: The top 3 things in your life that make you the most happy?
My husband, my mum and my sister.

BONUS: Ugly Christmas Sweater: Would you wear a sweater Molly Weasley made you or avoid it like the plague?
As a knitter, I like to think I will become the type of mum like Molly Weasley. That knits ugly jumpers for my children.

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Currently… November Edition

currently july

Currently Reading… Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel by James Luceno
As we are just days away from the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. So I am getting into the “rebellious” spirit. We have brought our tickets for a midnight screening and I have bought merchandise and am reading the prequel book.

Currently Watching… Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life
During November, I have loved watching Westworld. But the month was devoted to the return of Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I originally took Friday off, for Black Friday shopping but instead opted to spend the day in “Stars Hallow.”

Currently Listening… Cashmere by the Swet Shop Boys
I have loved this album for a few months, but seeing it performed live in November has increased my love for it. I am hoping for more material from Swet Shop Boys next year.

Currently Loving… Hamilton Mixtape
As I mentioned in my post about Joy, this month I have been loving the pre-released tracks from the Hamilton Mixtape, I can’t wait for the release of the whole album this weekend.

Currently Feeling… Christmassy
Last weekend, was the “Tree Decorating Party” for our extended family. An annual tradition when we all gather at my in-laws house and decorate their tree, eat, drink and relax before the craziness of December. It marks the start of the festive season for us.

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Christmas Eve Box

From October onwards my Pinterest feed becomes full of Elf on a Shelf ideas and Christmas Eve boxes – which is great if you have children, not so much if you don’t. Not to be out done last year I put together a Christmas Eve box for adults, instead of cookies we get cocktails!

Our Christmas Eve traditions changed a few years ago before that it was a night of revelling with old friends, catching up on the last 12 months and unwinding after the weeks of stressing out. Now it’s spend relaxing at home – the calm before the storm, we have a ready meal or take away, watch a Muppet’s Christmas Carol and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

Christmas Eve box 2014

So last year I brought those movies on DVD, creating a little box along with some popcorn, a new decoration for our tree and a Christmas candle. Of course no Christmas Eve box would be complete without a new set of pajamas. This year I am continuing the tradition but adding a little geeky feel.Christmas Eve BoxPajamas (primark) // Ornament
Popcorn Box// candle // cocktails

Primark seem to have licensing deals with most pop culture franchise, which means they have a great selection of geeky pajamas, it’s often hard to pick my favourite ones. Nearly every geeky Christmas gift guide I’ve seen this season has included this amazing BB-8 ornament – and I can see why it’s too cute (wasn’t the little droid the cutest thing you’ve ever seen). Finally, I’ve become obsessed with the pre-mixed cocktails from Marks & Spencers, I’ve yet to try the espresso martini version (I’m saving that for tomorrow), but I love the mince pie martini – best served really cold over ice.

Merry Christmas!

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Advent

When we were children the lead up to Christmas started with the store brought chocolate advent calendar, each day you would have to struggle with the perforated door to get to the tiny chocolate bar behind. Here at Chez Princessdeia we have never really grown up and every November we buy two advent calendars (one each as we never did learn to share). Last year Jason was extremely disappointed to learn that whilst he makes do with this bite sized chocolate every day his niece and nephew where having fun sized mars bars. As at there house, they have a wooden advent calendar with mini drawers to hold treats (some days they might get a toy instead of chocolates).

Whilst on ravelry last year, I found a pattern for advent calendar made of mini knitted hats, I just loved this idea but thought all along I would prefer to make mini stocking (after all knitters love making socks!) My original plan was to use Carissaknits holiday stockings pattern, in fact I had the pattern in my ravelry queue for nearly a year. Last month, I figured it would be quicker and easier to make the baby booties from Last-Minute Knitted Gifts.

Advent Booties

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