The festive season may for some be tedious, resulting in a lethargic attitude, but there are many short-cuts which do not necessarily tarnish the celebrations.
Besides the Christmas tree and gifts, other items can add hugely to the festive ambience one would wish to create.
The “purists” may scoff at anything practical and non-luxurious but quite honestly there are specialized stores that offer a wide range of useable and disposable items like table clothes and serviettes. What a joy for the hostess to eliminate stress when blobs of gravy from the turkey would otherwise stain an expensive table cloth or if a too exuberant guest knocks over the red wine with no regrets!
Even crackers are made to look quite expensive these days and if one has the courage to wear one of those inevitable Christmas hats, well so be it !
The glorious aromas, be they spicy, citrus or sweet are so part and parcel of making one’s home welcoming at this time of year.
A small dab of a favourite subtle perfume on light bulbs will perfume the air as will almond and vanilla essence in the warmer drawer of the oven and small bundles of cinnamon sticks dotted around a room have a similar effect as will whole oranges spiked with cloves.
Alcohol, especially champagne is synonymous with celebrating, but it is wise to offer some non- alcoholic drinks as many drivers are weary these days of those dreaded gadgets called “breathalysers” and furthermore a nasty hangover can be avoided.
Jugs of cranberry and pineapple juice go down well as will pear juice with a minute dash of almond essence with kiwi fruit garnish.
One’s imagination can go wild using the endless array of fruit juices available.
At this busy time of year it is practical to encourage one’s family to get involved. Matsimela has ideal items with which children can become creative.
For example ` metallic paper wrapped around soap scrolls and twisted each end then tied with colourful ribbon make marvellous Christmas crackers.
A glass fruit bowl or two can be filled with delightfully perfumed fizz-balls and individual bars of Vanilla and sandalwood or ginger & lime soaps can be wrapped in a festive way to place at each table setting! All this can be done lovingly at home without major stress of the crowds in the shopping malls.