Friday, 12 December 2008


Prickly fir cones drying in the hearth.

Prickly holly being made into decorations.

Prickly mood as we try to sort out the under stairs cupboard where I store lots of food and all of the craft stuff, before the tree goes into the hall and totally blocks off the doorway tomorrow *grin*. Craig is busy there now - I hope - while I attend to important matters, such as blogging and online shopping.

Friends came to visit today and brought us some wonderful candles which they had made themselves. They're beautiful. I was going to photograph them to show you but my camera battery is flat. Must get it on charge. We've a busy weekend ahead.

This evening we read the Fir Tree by Hans Christian Andersen. Hermione is now wondering if we can keep our tree for the whole year so that it doesn't feel sad and discarded like the one in the story. Talk of keeping it and just changing the decor to fit in with the seasons. seemed like a good idea before I read it but perhaps we should have stuck with Roald Dahl!

Wishes for Santa have been put up the chimney. Last year Hermione read in What Katy Did about children putting wishes up the chimney and Santa 'snatching' them away. We soon figured that providing we open the front door wide and she tears her wish list into small pieces, the updraught created in the chimney does seem to almost 'snatch' the paper from your hand when you put it by the top of the fire. Good fun (although must be very closely supervised of course) and adds a bit of that magic that I was moaning of the lack of yesterday.

On a total tangent here, did you know that wheat bags should not be used in bed? I was looking up instructions for filling them as I planned on making Hermione and Miles one each for Yule but I've changed my mind after reading this. Had enough spontaneously combusting in our life!

Edited to add that I just went in to tell nana what I had found out about wheat bags and we had one of those bizarre conversation.

Me - Did you know wheat bags can spontaneously combust, particularly if you use them in bed?

Nana - I didn't know that but I did know they are dangerous. They're so dangerous that Jenny (nana's friend in her 80's) had to stop making them for church fundraising after a lady in her nineties bought one, didn't listen to the instructions properly, put it the microwave for twenty minutes during which time it exploded and set the microwave on fire.

Me - Goodness, was the lady ok?

Nana - She's dead now, but the wheat bag wasn't implicated.


Jenny Bear said...

Funny you should mention wheat bags - they should come with a health warning. I used to have one in bed with me all the time till I havwe serious burns on a delicate area. Took ages to heal to please warn everyone to take care!

Claire said...

Oh dear Jenny. I'm so glad I did a google search before jumping on in and making them for the kids. I just thought they would be really safe - but they're obviously not!

Dawny said...

oh Claire what a chuckle of a story, how lovely to be having chats like that with your nana :-)

well I never knew that about wheat bags. On a similar note when Lana was little she had a hot water bottle a furry one with plastic eyes. She lay on it one night and her bare arm was on one of the eyes and she woke up screaming after it had got hot and burnt a deep circle in her arm. I snip the eyes or buttons aff any new ones now.

and letters up the chimney - gosh I'd quite forgotten that, I used to love doing that when I was young.

Claire said...

Nana is my mum. She lives with us in a granny flat and since the children came along we have all called her nana - sounds odd but works well here :-)

Hermione and Miles really fancy a hot waterbottle but I was worried after remembering how I was once burned by one. I thought the wheat bags would be safer but evidentally not.

Bridget said...

There was an item on our news last night about a man that's renting out Xmas trees for the month. A 4ft tree is £25 for the whole of December. He then collects it and nurtures it for the following year to rents it out again next year. He's rented out 300 already this year and hopes to do 3000 next year.

Claire said...

That's very interesting. I've been wondering if we should get one in a large pot to bring in for the festivities. Does seem a shame to think of them just being wood chipped in January ;-(

cosmic seed said...

rofl your conversations with nana would make a good book :)