Thursday, 26 November 2009

It's the thought [of spending $2640 on partridges and pear trees] that counts

The Christmas CD is playing in Starbucks today and the festive season is upon us. This takes over from their rather pleasing late 70s/early 80s compilation, so rather than being haunted by Squeeze I now find myself humming Dean Martin songs in the afternoon. Or, less pleasingly, Jingle Bell Rock*, which I CANNOT STAND. (In fact Christmas songs that have me fleeing shops or leaping for the skip button make a long list in themselves, so it is just as well I decided long since to stick to non-grumpy lists....).

This year, inspired by spotify playlists last year, we will be filling up on mince pies and sherry to the sounds of Nat King Cole, the Snoopy Christmas CD and James Brown's Funky Christmas. Oh yes.

The best Christmas song is, of course, The 12 Days of Christmas, being a long list of improbable gifts. Apparently it is not, as some had suggested, some kind of Catholic code during years of repression, and the goo-OOOld riiiings are in fact pheasants. From Monday you can check the cost of this extravagent list on the Christmas Price Index, but if you can't wait (or for an examination of the effects of recession on the cost of turtle doves) you could check last year's .

*Although wikipedia lists 56 artists who have recorded this, so it is yet possible that one of these versions will be at least tolerable. The Fall, for example, may have saved this for me, just.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

A Decorative Interlude

Thank you to people who have said nice things and identified themselves as actual listingslightly readers. Some of you are not even relations. I find this heartening.

It is a shame that, having readers, there is not more reading material. Some ideas are simmering. In the meantime, I shall pretend this is a craft blog and demonstrate how to make a festive dove decoration.

white card
white paper
scalpel and cutting mat (not essential, but does make it a bit easier)

1. Draw a dove shape on white card and cut it out (this one is about 10cm long).

2. Cut out some strips of white paper (these are 10cm wide) and fold them in a concertina kind of a way about every centimetre.

3. Chop into the concertina-ed paper symmetrically so that when it is unfolded it makes a pattern.

4. Cut a letterbox-shaped hole in the dove card, which is big enough (but only just) to push the folded concertina-paper-wings through.

5. Fan out wings and attach in the middle with glue. Voila!

The first set of these I made was in about 1985 (with added glitter), following instructions from, I think, Blue Peter, so thank you to them, and also to my parents for wielding the scissors....

Sunday, 8 November 2009

An Awesome Blog

That there are entire blogs which consist of one ever-expanding list is something that fills me with joy.

1000 Awesome Things is a marvellous list-blog and includes thoughts on the joys of socks, snow days, and cereal, as well as making space to acknowledge the particular pleasures of the smell of an old hardware store or the feeling of getting into a bed with clean sheets after shaving your legs.

Another blog to bookmark and read all of, I would suggest.