Dear Father Christmas.....I have been very good this year.
I don't mind telling you that this year will be a very frugal Christmas at Starre Corner. We've had a run of unexpected expenditure and the renovation pot, Christmas pot and every other pot is now quite empty. Renovation work has come to a grinding halt and I'd gladly skip Christmas present giving this year if that was an option.
My family and I are quite modest Christmas present givers, preferring something thoughtful and considered over big price tags. I far more enjoy the merriment and joy December has to offer over the commercial present buying frenzy encouraged by large faceless retailers. Every year I try to get my Christmas present buying list ticked off by the end of November so that I can enjoy all the fun and excitement December has to offer; wreath making, Christmas tree decorating, mince pie making, Christmas tree festivals, village Christmas fairs, farmers markets, carols services etc.
This year I am boycotting presents receiving, choosing to progress with my house renovation over present receiving. What's the point of getting lovely lotions and potions when I don't have a bathroom to use them in! However if I was to write an imaginary letter to Father Christmas I think it would read like this:
'Dear Father Christmas
I have been very good this year. I've been working hard and feel that I have particularly excelled in my taxi mum and parenting duties. It's not easy having two young independent daughters but I have done my utmost to support and encourage them. I'm afraid I haven't done as much to my renovation home as I'd hoped for. I think it's fair to say that I underestimated the time and effort it would take renovate Starre Corner by ourselves on a budget. Don't worry though, when you call in on Christmas Eve I'm sure you'll see some improvements. Hopefully you'll find the flat floor boards easier to manoeuvre round. When you are fumbling around in the dark please be aware that we have moved the position of a door. I'd hate for you to wall into a brick wall.
Despite Starre Corner not being as far down the line as I'd hope I do like still like to create a nice home vibe for my family, despite the bare walls and excessive dust. With this in mind there are a couple of things I'd love to receive this Christmas.
Firstly would it be too much to ask for a Robert's Revival iStream in black? We love music in our family and Starre Corner is always full of musical airwaves. One of my daughters loves musicals and the other prefers chart music. Hubster is a bit stuck in the past and loves punk based rock music (he's not allowed to listen to it when I am in the house) whilst I prefer more calming music such as jazz or classical. I haven't played any Christmas music yet this year but come December you'll hear it from the North Pole. I've had a love affair with Robert's Radio's ever since I bought my first home in my 20's. I boought an old vintage one at an antique fair for £10. It's such an iconic British brand and I love the dulcet tones which emanate from the speaker. An RR iStream would make my Christmas - there'd be jingle bells all the way.
Secondly, Christmas is not complete without Christmas candles. I want your senses to explode with Christmas overload when you enter Starre Corner on Christmas Eve. There'll be homemade mince pies and of course my legendary sloe gin to enjoy by a roaring log fire. The Christmas tree will be sparkling in it's full glory. I'll leave some Christmas carols softly playing (it can't be too loud or it would wake the girls). Would it be possible for one of your elves to deliver an early Christmas present? I'd really light to leave a Plum and Ashby Orange and Nutmeg Christmas Eve candle burning for you to enjoy. It will be worth the elf's effort - they smell amazing.
You'll already know this. If I only ever received candles for Christmas I'd be a very happy bunny which is why I would like to add another one to my wish list. Candles fill the air with fine fragrances all year round in Starre Corner. Once Christmas has been packed away I'd love to burn a very special Harp Cottage candle. Would you believe it, I bumped in to Justine from Harp Cottage at a French service station - what are the chances of that? Justine told me all about her latest venture; producing candles with care and integrity. They are everything you could ever hope for in a candle; beautiful black steel containers, sustainable soy wax with wooden wicks and made by adults with learning difficulties. The fragrance is also heavenly - Fig and Cassis. Justine and I have struck up a lovely long distance friendship and I would love to support her.
I'm nearly at the end Father Christmas. There's just two more to go. Looking at my list I can see that there is a bit of a theme running through my choices; they're all from UK companies, I can't speak for Robert's Radio but certainly the rest are businesses run by women and thirdly the colour. Obviously I have a bit of a thing for black & white, although my very last choice has a bit of Christmas red to match your trousers.
So, next up is a present solely for me. I'd really love a new purse made by Owen Barry, a Somerset based company with a great ethos. This family business has been upholding a philosophy of British heritage and manufacturing for over 70 years. They make the most gorgeous leather products and I've spotted and animal print purse which is so me. Admittedly this feels a little indulgent request, especially when I should possibly be asking you to help finish my bathroom. I have heard about your DIY skills though so maybe I am better off asking for a purse.
Finally, this is more for the whole family than me alone. Could I please have a new Cornishware - any size in red or blue. We've used our vintage Cornishware one so much it's recently cracked. What's a tea drinking family to do without a milk jug? I've had a love affair with Cornishware since I was a little girl. It's such an iconic British brand and a brand well worth supporting.
I'm exhausted now after writing this. Time for a big glass of red organic wine and a gluten free (palm oil free) mince pie.
Have a lovely Christmas FC.
Hopefully you'll still be able to visit next year once we've left the EU.