I don’t need to remind you that this year has been a weird one. From the fact it feels like we’re living in the roaring twenties again – just the shit part – to this awful virus which has kept us all at home in a year which we all thought was going to be the bees knees. However, I have got no time to keep complaining, for I have presents to wrap and gifts to give! Even though this year has been super duper awful, there are some people who I wanted to just say thank you to. They have been my hero’s, cheering me up when I feel awful and just being there for me 24/7. So, this is for my friends, my own hero’s who have kicked ass all of this year and continue to do so, whatever the weather! As a way of thanking my friends (don’t worry, my annual thank you is out now!) this is Tati’s 2020 Christmas present haul! [I know this is after Christmas but I’ve worked hard on this article so I’m posting it no matter what!]
After I completed all my mock exams, my Mum and I decided to go out and buy some presents for our friends and family. So, I dressed up in my cutest, most comfortable outfit, and we both headed out to find some gifts for the ones we love the most.
Luckily, I had some idea about what I wanted to get for them all, which made the whole thing a lot easier! After three hours straight of standing up, we were finally done!
Nothing makes me feel more like an elf then when I wrap up presents! I finally have a bit of a knack for it, so I put on some Big Mouth and try not to get tangled in tape!
the present guide
By now, I’m sure you’re all desperate to know what I’m getting for my friends! Well, fear not! This is the list/gift guide – Tati approved!
for the foodie
I have one friend who is totally obsessed with Indian food and is always super jelly whenever I talk about how I got Indian for dinner. He also loves to cook, something which he’s done lots of during lockdown! I found this little recipe book which I thought was perfect for him and he’s already prepped to make all 200 dishes!
for the movie nerd
My best mate loves watching films and tv shows. He’s the sort of person who you’re most likely to find staying inside on a boiling hot day because he simply must finish off watching the final episode of a Netflix show he’s already watched three times before. One thing which he watches the most however, is Game of Thrones. Whenever I ask him what he’s watching, 80% of the time he replies GoT. I bagged these too finds from Menkind, and now I want them for myself!
for the veggie
I have a friend who’s been vegetarian for almost two years now, but always struggles with pots breaking in his bag, cracking or just plain losing them! For him I decided to get him a pop of colour, much deserved I must say!
for the one who needs a bit more love
I have a friend who I have known for years and years and years now. Unfortunately, he never fully realises how much love I have for him and how he needs more love for himself, so I decided to make him some things! I didn’t get any photos of these things unfortunately, but I did make him: a pillow, a badge and some lipgloss! I also threw in some bits and bobs from The Body Shop which caught my eye – they’re sweet like him!
for the gamer girl
For my gorgeous girlie who spends wayyy too much time playing games with her bf – we gotta make it prettier! I thought these lights were so cute, and you can never have too much hand cream!
For another one of my girlies, I decided to give her something different. So, I went onto Etsy and I found the most gorgeous interesting shops ever! It’s called SamThurlowArt and this man produces custom made fountain pen earrings and necklaces! [no-one else in the world has the same earrings as the one my friend now wears, which is the coolest thing to me]. I cannot get over how brilliant this store is, Sam is so good at putting care into all his products, plus his communicative skills are brilliant, letting me know when they were being dispatched etc. All in all, if you want to support small businesses, Etsy is a perfect place to go and Sam’s shop is the best place to start!
for the Potterhead
Finally, you have my crazy fangirl of a friend whom I love to pieces. I decided I wanted to get her something to show her this. Yet again, I wanted to support small shops, so I went back on Etsy and found a cute Harry Potter print which you could personalise yourself, from Clover Designs Store! I’ve yet to receive this unfortunately, but as soon as I do I will let you know!
At the end of it all, on the 18th of December, I finally went around like Santa’s little helper, and I delivered all my friends the gifts!!
all done now!!
There you have it! That was something pretty different than usual so please let me know if you liked it, I was on a mission to get it out before the end of 2020!
Firstly, I’m sorry for the extended, unexpected hiatus. I will be explaining that in due time, but I am safe, happy and healthy and I hope you gorgeous people are too! Now, on with the article!
I love Christmas. The presents; the songs; the traditions; the food; the atmosphere, I love it all.
Due to the fact I love it so much and I want to spread some Christmas cheer to my favourite people in the whole wide world (yes that is you), I have decided to give you a list of 24 things to do on the run up to Christmas, so you can keep it festive all season long! These things are perfect to do with your friends, family, significant other, whoever really! Don’t worry if you can’t see people face to face because of…reasons… these activities also work if you’re self isolating this festive season.
I’m just hoping to provide you all with a little festive joy in these dark times. I am now Tati the Christmas Elf, spreading Christmas cheer at this time of year! [Yes, I did write that because it rhymed, Christmas makes me turn into a child and that’s not a bad thing!]. Now, let’s get started!
Dance to Christmas Music
There’s something strangely beautiful about dancing like nobody’s watching. It’s freeing, a good form of exercise, and you can listen to Christmas bangers while pretending you’re Mariah Carey, and no one will judge you because they’re doing exactly the same thing. I just feel like people need to dance more, it’s a magical thing.
2. Decorate the tree!
Lugging down the tree from the attic, reminiscing over all the decorations you remember getting, then eventually abandoning the decorating because you “got bored”. That’s my Christmas tree decorating for you. However, this year, I’m going to be different. I am on a mission to decorate the tree and make it the most gorgeous tree ever. It’s such a cute activity and I can’t wait to do it this weekend!
3. Go Christmas shopping!
My favourite part of Christmas is – without a doubt – the Christmas shopping! I love going around the shops and choosing that one perfect gift which I know they’ll treasure for years to come. Even though the shops are opening, if you’re still paranoid about having to go to the big shops, don’t fear! Etsy is here! Etsy is pretty much now the place I buy everything from. You support small businesses, you get quality products and it’s so lovely because you feel like you’re a valued customer at each shop you buy from. Plus, the things you can buy there… oh. my. god. I just live and breathe Etsy – it’s a Pinterest-ers paradise!
4. Make some special Christmas cards for the ones you love
I also love to make cards. I’m slowly turning into a full out crafter and it’s not as bad as I thought it would be. I love to make handmade cards for friends and family because – like them – they’re one in a million. Plus, if you’re stuck for ideas, just look online!
5. Christmas Light Trails
Something which I used to do all the time with my friend at this time of year. We’d hop in the car and go have a look at all the Christmas lights in the houses. Some of them were gorgeous!! As time progressed, I began to bring this tradition to my family, and now we go and look at the Christmas lights in London. A gorgeous, but affordable, tradition which produces gorgeous photos!
6. Wear something festive!
Every day is Christmas when you’re friends with me! From reindeer antlers, to dancing light up spinning Christmas trees, to hair baubles, to ugly jumpers, to a turkey hat, if you want tack, we have you covered! My friends and I all have the most tacky crap in our houses, exclusively for the month of December. No matter how bad life is going for us, we will get into the festive season, jingle bells and all. It cheers us up to no end and the teachers get a kick out of it too. It’s just a lovely way to spread Christmas cheer when you don’t feel too cheery yourself.
7. Gift wrapping
Unleash your inner elf and wrap to your hearts content!! Get out all the wrapping paper, ribbons, all that jazz and wrap the gifts so beautifully that people won’t want to open them! Plus, you can even make your own wrapping paper and that’s always super impressive and it can look super professional.
8. Christmas movie marathon!!
The only thing I do on my Sunday evenings! I love Christmas films – well a certain selection. And I have been getting hyped all year to watch the Nativity Trilogy!! I don’t know if people watch this trilogy anywhere else that’s not England, but if not, you should! I’ve been watching these films since the first came out in 2010 and I now watch them every single year, without fail. Another iconic one I’ve watched for as long as I can remember is the Disney Once Upon a Christmas. I’ve watched those since I could watch things and those mini stories all hold a special place in my heart.
9. Christmas walks!
There’s nothing better than late night strolls – I have mentioned this before! And when it’s Christmas, there’s a certain sense of magic in the air. Lace up your boots, zip up your coat and wrap up warm! We’re going on an adventure ♥️
10. Read a book
I love to read. I never shut up about how much I love to read, so of course my list has to include at least a tiny bit of reading! Just curl up and allow yourself to be transported to a magical world where the only limit is your imagination. It’s such a perfect way to unwind and relax and forget about your worries.
11. Spa Day!
Nothing screams self love like turning off your phone and running a bubble bath and hakuna matata-ing your cares away. Use that bath bomb at the back of your cupboard and put on your favourite playlist and just embrace your own gorgeous self at the end of a stressful day at school or work.
12. Do some charity work
One of the most important parts of Christmas is giving to others, and something I used to do at my secondary school is we’d donate to our local food bank. I think that’s such a lovely tradition and it’s always lovely to give back to those we love.
13. Make a gingerbread house!
Something I am on a mission to do this festive season is make a gingerbread house. As soon as my mock exams are over, I will be making the most extravagant, incredible gingerbread house the world has ever seen! Expect a blog post of my journey soon!
14. Get those cute Christmas pics!
Another thing I always go on about at this time of year is taking the cutest photos possible! The Christmas lights, the weather, all of it is just super cute and Insta-worthy! Make sure you share your photos with me ❤
15. Make special Christmas cookies!
As you have probably worked out by now, I love baking! I find it so relaxing and decorating things so they look super pretty is just so much fun to me. I love to bake with my friends especially and just because we can’t go to each other’s houses doesn’t mean we can’t still do that!! I for one know I will be FaceTiming my friends and together we can whip up a batch of cookies for our families to enjoy!
16. Make reindeer food
Something I used to love doing when I was five or six was getting food for Santas reindeer and sprinkling it on my lawn on Christmas Eve. It’s something I hold close to my heart and I know if I ever decide to have kids, it’ll be something I share with them. If you want a recipe, I found a lovely one here.
17. Hot chocolate and fluffy sock Friday’s!
The other day, I was talking to my boyfriend about this blog post idea, saying that this was one of the first things I thought of. He blew me away and said he’s never owned a pair of fluffy socks! Crazy! I feel like it should be a law that everyone owns their own pair of fluffy socks and has to wear them at least once a month. I have oodles and boodles of these and I have my gorgeous hot chocolate which I will only ever buy from Whittard’s . Perfect after a tiring week at school, getting into my jammies, putting on whatever binge-worthy thing I’m watching this week, and settling down and see how long it takes for me to become the sofa.
18. Letters to Santa
Yet another fun thing I loved doing when I was young, letters to Santa are the greatest invention known to mankind. Just writing them and hoping that you’ll get what you wished so hard for, and seeing if he listened to your wishes on Christmas Day.
19. Christmas markets
This may be a lot more difficult now, what with restrictions and everything, but if there is one open near you, go to a Christmas market!! They have some of the most gorgeous things in these little shops, I even have a ring I got when I was 12 which I still wear today from the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland. (Next year I’m going to go, I refuse to miss out two consecutive years!!)
20. Star gazing
Looking out of my window right now, this may not exactly be the smartest move in the whole galaxy (heh… get it?). But, on a slightly less wet and windy day, go to your local park and just lay there, looking at the stars. I love stars, I used to love going to the planetarium too, just that feeling that you were infinite and you could do anything you put your mind to, it’s just so gorgeous to me. It’s the thought that when you look at them, your soulmate could be looking at them too… gah it’s just so cute to me!
21. BOARD GAME BATTLE!!! [not to the death though, no one should get hurt]
Sometimes I forget how nerdy I can be, then I’ll start getting super excited over board games. I love board games. They’re so much fun and I really enjoy how competitive people get, especially in things like UNO! If you want to get the whole family together, why not create a family pub quiz? Zoom call in the family and see who’s the best at knowing random crap you’ll never need in the real world! It’s super fun and my family did it once a week together over lockdown.
22. Hang up the stockings!
I’ve had my own personal stocking I’ve used since I was born!! I just think they’re the coolest things and it’s so fun hanging them up on Christmas Eve, then coming down the following morning and seeing them all filled to the brim!
23. Get some special Christmas PJs!
Matching or not, get yourself some festive jammies this Christmas season! They have super cute ones everywhere and they’re super affordable too! Get the festive spirit running through your veins this December!
24. Have a lazy day – you deserve it!
No matter what you’ve spent this year doing, I think we can all agree that you deserve a lazy day this December. Enjoy yourself, relax and stay safe this festive season.