The Bag Lady

Six weeks to Christmas … and counting!

I know there’s still plenty of time left before the silly season really gets going but time flies when you’re having fun.

I’ll be writing my lists this weekend, which will include lists for Christmas gifts and who I’ll be buying them for with ideas alongside, the same for Christmas cards and all other festive things which are a must.

Christmas gift wrap

I saw something interesting the other day on Facebook and I have to say, I think it’s a fabulous idea. Instead of buying rolls and rolls of expensive Christmas wrapping paper, which incidentally if it’s foil, glitter or laminated, are generally the ones that cannot be recycled, buy a roll of plain brown paper and use this, along with a little imagination to wrap your gifts.

Bright red, green or gold and silver ribbon, string, sticky stars, and fresh green foliage out of your garden, to name but a few, will work wonders. Sadly, I have rolls of bright shiny Christmas paper leftover from last year, goodness knows what I was thinking, but I ended up with lots extra. But I will also wrap some gifts in brown paper and see how beautiful I can make them look. It will give me something to do in my spare time (what’s that I may add)! Apart from helping to save the planet, you’ll also save money. If you still feel like you’d rather use the bright Christmas gift wrap, then use it for gifts for children and for adults use the brown paper.

Christmas mincemeat with a twist

Now’s the time to make your Christmas mincemeat for those delicious mince pies which we all love. I have shared this with you but I’ll give you my Christmas mince recipe again, just in case. I find the jars of shop Christmas mincemeat very sweet and too syrupy.

Ingredients

1 jar of shop-bought Christmas mincemeat – any of the different brands are quite fine

4 Granny Smith apples (if available) or otherwise apples which have a tart taste

100g flaked almonds (one small packet)

50g Glacé cherries (chopped into small pieces)

Grated rind from two lemons and one orange

Half a box of Atora Suet (usually available at Checkers and Pick n Pay)

Half a small cup of brandy

Method

Spoon out the whole jar of shop-bought Christmas mince into a big mixing bowl. Peel the apples and grate finely into the mince. Grate the lemon and orange rind and add to the mixture.

Add the flaked almonds, chopped cherries and suet, mix together and then pour the brandy into the mixture. Mix again.

You should get about three jam jars from this mixture. Spoon into the jars and keep in the fridge until needed. If you don’t have extra empty jars, use Tupperware containers or similar.

I’ll give you the homemade pastry recipe in the next week or two, and it’s easy!

A tiny tot

Not that I want you all to rush out and purchase alcoholic beverages but there are some great deals at the moment and if you enjoy a wee tipple, now may be a great time to stock up on a couple of bottles of your favourites. I think we can quite safely count these as non-perishable items. The same with wine, buy when you see specials, all those five and 10 Rands you manage to save will certainly add up.

That’s it for this week. Shop till you drop.

Julie

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Julie Maule
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