...with sparkle, glitter and homemade crackers.
I've never been keen on having a 'theme' for Christmas decorations. A tree decorated with a single colour just leaves me cold, I'm afraid. I really enjoy the ritual of taking the decorations down from the loft and sorting through them. It's like welcoming distant family and friends back around the Christmas dining table - so many memories come flooding back! I've saved a few of the decorations that my daughter made when she was small - a loo roll cracker, a glittery heart, an angel with a distinctly crooked halo! I've got some baubles that say 'baby's first Christmas', and a few that we bought as souvenirs on a family holiday to Disneyland, Paris. Over the years, I've picked up some bargains in the January sales, like a lovely set of three wise men. Some of the baubles date back to my childhood! Quite a lot of my Christmas decorations came from my mum, who loves a 'theme' and updates her decorations regularly!
My Christmas tree was the biggest expense. It isn't particularly large, it's artificial and has lights built into it. It is a nice tree, and has lasted a long time. It still looks good, so I imagine we will get many more years use out of it. The lights on one of the branches have stopped working, but we just keep that part turned to the back, and no one can tell!
I don't really need any more decorations, in fact I haven't managed to put them all out this year. However, I do like to make some, just for fun. I sometimes bake biscuits to hand from the tree. This year I'm making some salt dough decorations with my lunch time craft club at school. It's really easy to do.
You take half a cup of salt, and mix it with a whole cup of flour. Gradually stir in half a cup of water, and knead for ten minutes. A splash of oil improves the texture a bit, but isn't essential. You make your decorations, then it needs to dry. It will air dry, but to speed things up you can microwave it for two or three minutes, or put it in a low oven for a while. Once dry, you can paint or varnish them, but last year I made some little stars and left them plain, and was quite happy with the effect.