Ahem. It's the 25th September, which means....

(643 Posts)
FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 06:17:15

That I hereby declare the Fellatio's Poncetastic Christmas Thread Part 4 open for business.

For those of you who do not know WTF I am on about, read this from 2010 by way of explanation:

OK, first of all, I know it's still September by we need to start this thread now because as you all know, having a truly Poncetastic Christmas involves precision planning, strategy, bravery, heroics, and frequently martyrdom. A bit like the war in Afghanistan, only with nicer food and sparkly shoes.

So, if you, like me, actually want to make the next twelve weeks of your life a misery by hand-crafting your cards, finding a huge bucket for Nigella's turkey in brine, pickling pears, shrivelling oranges in a low oven for those rustic au naturel decorations, dragging half a holly bush back from the woods, and just generally being a smug annoying jobsworth ponce, join me on this thread.

Feel free to post photos of previous tree-trimming, cake icing or table centrepiece triumphs, discuss this year's bauble colour themes, debate the merits of Delia versus Gordon, road-test a selection of canapes and cocktails, (all in the line of duty) and link to lovely inspirational photos/craft ideas for a truly Poncetastic Christmas.

Warning: If your idea of a good Christmas involves Pizza, ITV, gravy granules or anything with 'Aunt Bessies' on the packet, this is not the thread for you.

If you want to read the previous three threads for Christmas 2010, 2011 and 2012 search my name in the Christmas topic.

In the words of the great Mike Reid from Runaround, G-G-G-G-G- GO!

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Tue 24-Sep-13 06:19:24

It is the 24th of september.

and stop talking about christmas.

We should sit quietly and ignore it till it goes away

grin

Suddengeekgirl Tue 24-Sep-13 06:20:21

It's not the 25th yet confused

But I am ready, willing and hopefully able to ponce! grin

chanie44 Tue 24-Sep-13 06:20:37

Yay. I really want to join in this year as I had a new born last year.

I'm currently knitting some mini Xmas stockings and crochet candycanes in preparation for Xmas.

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 06:22:06

I will make a Christmas cake or a Christmas pudding, or both this week. I know it's a bit late, but now I live in the middle east I am away for two months all summer, when I would previously have done it, and the first month back here is always a bit hectic, getting DS back to school, catching up with friends etc., so I just haven't had much of a chance before now. I really should be more organised next year and do them before June.

I bought some marzipan yesterday, so that's a start.

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 06:24:32

Oh fuck. Is it? Are you sure? grin

Never mind. There was always some confusion over whether I started on the 24th or the 25th anyway, (even I am not sure confused) so let's just put that minor error behind us, and move forward with the job in hand.

Chop chop. We have a busy schedule ahead of us. No room for slackers.

rootypig Tue 24-Sep-13 06:28:41

It is still 23rd September where I am grin

But it is never too early to ponce!!!!

rootypig Tue 24-Sep-13 06:30:46

Cannot believe you're not making your own marzipan FN shock

Maybe you could use the extra day you suddenly find on your hands to rectify grin grin

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 06:32:41

YES! I've been looking forward to this blush

I'm doing my cakes this week, trying out a couple of card designs and have ordered a few Christmas craft/food books.

Oh got really excited then because I though it was temporarily out of overdraft day pay day. Back to baked beans menu tonight. Have already done some Christmas craft though have angels left over from dd1 first Communion

JustBecauseICan Tue 24-Sep-13 06:33:44

<squeals>

Bah, Christmas Eve is sometimes nicer than Christmas Day anyway. All that anticipation.

AgathaHannigan Tue 24-Sep-13 06:39:12

Yay! Thanks fn, I got a little frisson of excitement as soon as I realised this was it... I can almost smell the tree already.

fuzzpig Tue 24-Sep-13 06:42:10

I got a bit freaked out then, that I'd missed a whole day (either that or I made a lot of mistakes at work yesterday shock)

I am merely marking my place, since I am far too slatternly to have any useful tips myself, but am hoping to gain wisdom from you lot grin

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 06:42:39

I did seriously consider it rooty and I stood there in front of the marzipan shelf in the supermarket debating with myself. grin I decided to buy some anyway, and then it's there if I get lazy/run out of time, or whatever. If not, I'll just use it for something else. Maybe some homemade sweets/chocolates. I bought some chocolate moulds from Lakeland a few months ago and I haven't used them yet. I need to think of some nice varieties of fillings to go in them. Or I might just lock myself in the bathroom and eat the entire block of marzipan. it has been known.

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 24-Sep-13 06:45:01

I so desperately want a poncetastic Christmas but I don't know what I'm doing so I will lurk here and copy you all. Last year we had sad flaccid tinsel and macaroni cheese blush but I was pregnant and couldn't be arsed. I am going to up my game tremendously this year. I have allocated a Christmas drawer and have been hoarding ribbons and wrapping materials. I think the cake will be my project for this weekend.

rootypig Tue 24-Sep-13 06:50:20

I eat marzipan from the pack too! god I fucking love the stuff. Actually bought marzipan is well nice, Silver Spoon surprisingly quaffable and Waitrose with brandy vair good. I am a veritable marzipan connoisseur!

Accccctually since we are here talking about marzipan and all, it is well good on mince pies instead of a pastry lid, star or christmas tree cutter.

Chanie I am youtubing how to crochet candycanes actually how to crochet, not a fucking clue. I want some!

BellaOfTheBalls Tue 24-Sep-13 06:51:21

I've already made chutney and jam as gifts. Marmalade, sloe gin, chocolates, Christmas cake and cookies still to come. I've ordered some Christmas cards and bought some decorate your own Christmas table decorations to keep the DCs quiet

This we're having Christmas at the in-laws. There isn't enough wine in the world.

CbeebiesIsMyLife Tue 24-Sep-13 06:52:37

I want a poncetastic christmas, I really really do. But undoubtedly when push comes to shove, aunt bessie will be my go to girl and who doesnt love some bisto gravy!

Teach me how to be poncetastic I could do with some distraction and some inspiration for my blog!

Thanks fellatio, was getting worried! I am a veteran poncerasticer and determined that this year I will actually do something with the million pine cones DS collected. Probably garlands. And planning to do rib of beef after last years turkey fiasco.am off work for next 6 weeks so plenty of time for plotting poncery, can anyone recommend a good book I can study?

50shadesofknackered Tue 24-Sep-13 07:00:38

I want to join in too. I'm making Christmas cakes next week and planning decorations. I want a poncetastic Christmas !!

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 07:02:05

Oh yes, I also ordered a massive haul from Lakeland for Christmas baking on Saturday and another thread is making me want to order the Cath kidston Christmas organiser.

I'm really, really a bit excited now!

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 07:02:45

I have made Chutney. Today (or tomorrow) I am making pickled onions and this for boxing day.

I normally make my own cake and pudding but I am 23wks prg so not sure where that leaves me with the alcohol. Can I eat them if made with alcohol? Can I feed the cake with alcohol? I don't really want to buy from the shop, I enjoy the tradition of making them with the dc but I work by the rule that if I can't eat it, I'm not making it! <<selfish emotion>>

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 24-Sep-13 07:03:44

The point of covering a cake in marzipan is to eat the spare, and buying lots of packets to ensure there is plenty of spare.

I'd love to try making my own marzipan, anyone have a recipe?

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 07:04:55

Ooh Issac, what did you order from Lakeland?

BellaOfTheBalls Tue 24-Sep-13 07:04:56

The easiest way to begin your poncetastic Christmas journey is marmalade. Buy a big tin of Ma Made from the supermarket and follow the instructions on the tin label the jars with poncey pretty labels and tie a pointless ribbon round the top. Give to neighbours or friends as a simple homemade Christmas gift.

TwentiethCenturyGirl Tue 24-Sep-13 07:06:10

Oh hooray! I am taking my poncing responsibilities seriously this year. I have been a semi poncer in previous years but will be studying your wise words to help me reach new heights during this festive season.

Chutney making is on my list of things to do this weekend.

microserf Tue 24-Sep-13 07:10:47

I am really ashamed to admit I just ordered all my Christmas cards, wrap and advent calendars. Managed to completely fail to do these things last year until v last minute and get massively stressed.

Otherwise, shall certainly be buying all Xmas fare from ye old Asda and certainly not baking a single thing from scratch. School should take care of the artfully handcrafted declarations. Last year the children produced penguins from toilet rolls. These reduced one of my dinner guests to hysterical giggles when she decided they were too unsuitably phallic... So we kept them up for the rest of the year On Principle.

CbeebiesIsMyLife Tue 24-Sep-13 07:12:31

whats ma made?

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 07:19:13

bythemoonlight-

Chocolate advent house for me grin
Pastry pusher for mince pies/small tarts etc
3D Christmas tree cookies
2x basket bags
Chocolate spoons mould
Chocolate moulds
Naice cake stencils
Snowflake stencils
Merry Christmas stencil
Cook book stand
And best of all was a gift card for £50's worth of wine for just the £4.99 delivery cost grin

I was going to buy this holly wreath mould but looked on Amazon and got this in 3 different sizes and these to make my own.

I'm going to find the email from the book people to show you what Christmas books I got too, hang on a sec.

BellaOfTheBalls Tue 24-Sep-13 07:22:31

Prepared Seville oranges in a tin. You add sugar, water, boil it then pour into jars. The whole process takes less than an hour and you should get about 6 jars of marmalade out of it. Job done.

Marking place. Will be back after buying Lakeland empty

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 07:27:29

Books-
Kirstie's Christmas crafts
Christmas crafts
I also got 13 more books- some as presents but most of them cook books I may be a little bit obsessed with cook books

I also have Mary Berry's Christmas collection pre ordered

Also getting this Cath Kidston organiser

Still have last years books to use too! I ordered this one last year thanks to this thread grin

Refoca Tue 24-Sep-13 07:28:13

If I join you, can you forgive me for planning a party first and not getting truly Christmassy until Dec? I need ideas for both...

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 07:38:51

Right, now for those you who cannot be bothered to plough your way through the 2010 thread, I think I should re-introduce the idea of the Snowman. It is something of a family tradition for us, cruelly inflicted on my DH by his mother, and I have found the need to cruelly inflict it on my children, by way of carrying on the legacy.

Hang on, I'll C&P from the other thread.

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 07:40:48

Here it is:

OK, I'll start you off with our HIDEOUS Christmas tradition called 'The Snowman'.

First of all you fashion a snowman out of a lidded bucket/receptacle of some sort, or make it out of a cylinder of stiff carboard, cover it in cotton wool/duvet filling/whatever, woolly hat, face, etc.

For every person present at the lunch table you must have one small token silly gift. Wrap it and attach a name label, and put it in the snowman.

After lunch/dinner everyone in the family has to do a 'turn' of some sort. It can be reciting a poem, telling a joke, singing a song, playing the recorder, a card trick - you get the idea. (It's best to start practising now - the potential for humiliation is enormous) and after each person had performed, they get their present from inside the Snowman. It's wonderful and excrutiating all at the same time.

And you can video people and laugh at them for years to come. And I do. And it's very sweet looking back on your kids doing their turns when they were little.

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 07:42:03

I don't mind giving ideas for a non-Christmas party at all Refoca, so long as it is a poncetastic party.

Guitargirl Tue 24-Sep-13 07:43:05

Sadly, I am lacking in the 3 key ingredients to join you properly: time, imagination and any creative ability whatsoever.

BUT I do love Christmas so I will be watching from afar as I did last year...and imagining that our tinsel is home-made holly and berry garlands...

FellatioNelson Tue 24-Sep-13 07:44:46

Well we can help you with the creativity and the imagination part Guitar indeed that is our mission and our God-given vocation, but I am afraid we cannot help you with the time.

Can't you just employ some servants? confused

whattodoo Tue 24-Sep-13 07:51:41

So, what Christmas cake recipes are recommended?

I made 4 puddings last year, so have 2 ready and waiting for this year's festivities.

I've been gathering gifts all year and have bought my very expensive '2013' bauble (I get a different one one each year and will pass the collection to DD when she is an adult).

DumSpiroSpero Tue 24-Sep-13 07:55:10

Ooh, we're actually having a homemade Christmas this year.

I have been somewhat backed into a corner by DD's Godmother who gave her a suitcase of Christmas crafts for her birthday a couple of weeks ago.

We are waiting until half term to get started though but I have promised she can make all the decorations and decorate the tree for the first time ever this year (she's 9).

Meanwhile, I will be sitting on my hands, biting my tongue and consuming industrial quantities of mulled wine while I reminisce about my beautiful, carefully coordinated decorations languishing in the loft.

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 07:59:05

Just reading about mulled wine makes me depressed. No alcohol this Christmas for me sad

ManicMinor Tue 24-Sep-13 08:22:38

Yay! (I did briefly wonder if I had got my dates wrong and that today was in fact my birthday when I read the thread).

I've followed these from the start, and aspired, but this year I have the perfect storm of not working and having Christmas at home rather than MILs for the first time since the dc arrived, so this is the year! I spent a pleasant hour or so perusing the John Lewis, M&S and Lakeland Christmas sites yesterday which has started the ball rolling.

Guitargirl Tue 24-Sep-13 08:27:07

grin

I could enlist DD and DS I suppose but our kitchen table is already like a Christmas card factory line come December with me barking out orders, no, I mean carefully nurturing their Christmas crafty sides.

They did collect some acorns the other day so they would probably be up for pine cone collecting. Do you find that sort of stuff starts to smell though after a few days? And I don't mean nice Christmassy smell, I mean dead wood sort of smell.

Editededition Tue 24-Sep-13 08:33:41

I love Mumsnet! For decades I thought I was the only lunatic who started Christmas in early September!

So - I've started the Sloe Gin and the Blackberry Brandy, set the onions to pickle, and done the chutney.
Have also made the Christmas cakes (5!! as I just seem to keep collecting people that want, but won't DIY)
(whattodo I have a recipe which I've used for almost 40 years, and never had a failure with, so happy to PM if you would like it)

Its the creative side I am stuck on ....any ideas for an elegant tablecentre, anyone? I have always been inclined to three candles with the usual ivy & cones, but have DDs ILs with me this year for the first time ....and they are very minimalist, so would like something subtle
<<wondering if Christmas & subtle ever belong in the same sentence>>

Editededition Tue 24-Sep-13 08:36:06

Guitar - solve the dead wood smell by thorough drying!
I sit everything on a slatted tray on the hall radiator for a couple of days
(and hope visitors don't assume my house always smells that way!)

PimmsOclockisNow Tue 24-Sep-13 08:38:07

I'm in! And very excited as this will be my first Mumsnet Christmas. Tis a tad worrying that I am more excited about that than RL Christmas!

Has anyone read the Anthea Turner Christmas book - I have been given it as a gift but rather worried about opening it in case it has evil powers or something.

Editededition Tue 24-Sep-13 08:42:21

MisselthwaiteManor aaaargh....don't eat the spare by itself grin
major miss on a favourite in this house which only comes in December .....Berry and Marzipan muffins!

sydlexic Tue 24-Sep-13 08:47:32

Nearly had a heart attack thought today was my anniversary, and you said I had missed it. Don't you realise I believe everything I read on MN.

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 08:52:53

EditionEdition, I'd love your Christmas cake recipe if you wouldn't mind. I want to make mine this week smile

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 08:53:41

Oops sorry, I read your name wrong Editededition blush

Chubfuddler Tue 24-Sep-13 08:56:06

<marks poncy place>

I've done all my Christmas present shopping (smug)

Hooray!!!!

My ponceing is likely to be significantly curtailed due to a) 7 month old crawling, non-sleeping twins!! And b) building work scheduled to finish on the 14 December (and which requires us to move out early Nov). Argggghhhhh. I think I will do as much baking etc over the next 5 weeks and them do some fun shit after that!

I've made nigella's chocolate Fruit cake a couple of times and it is lush! I make it with my own blackberry whiskey (which is now 3 years old and maturing nicely) instead of Tia Maria and a bit of heather honey. The chocolate is not in your face, it more adds a dark bitter edge. I also like it because it has no manky nuts or bloody peel in it.

Both my mother an my FIL are big fans - which is VERY high praise

I also plan to make a fireplace wreath (what's the right term?) as am getting an awesome antique carerra marble fireplace. Also BIG tree.

Will be back. Twins are rampaging. SO EXCITED!!

Guitargirl Tue 24-Sep-13 09:06:15

Edited - thanks for the drying wood tip. I may make this a (semi) poncetastic Christmas after all!

Also keen to make marzipan. Recipe?

bymoonlight I was pregnant last year , if you read through the 2012 thread there should be some non-alcoholic festive ideas. My fav is pomegranate juice with a dash of lime and topped up with soda - delish -

bymoonlight I was pregnant last year , if you read through the 2012 thread there should be some non-alcoholic festive ideas. My fav is pomegranate juice with a dash of lime and topped up with soda - delish -

Hullygully Tue 24-Sep-13 09:25:40

good god

that is all

LadyBigtoes Tue 24-Sep-13 09:31:05

OMG I have to get that pastry pusher thing.

<completely changes mind about necessity of thread>

<stern look at Hully> we are in the Christmas section so raspberries to you grin

Ooh. All is now right with world.

Marking my place for a lovely read later.

I love the idea of a homemade poncetastic Xmas but don't live up to it really. DS only likes aunt Bessie's yorkshires. And insists on having them on Xmas too. But I am poncetastic at heart.

Have started buying a few bits for Xmas. Biscuits etc. Need to make cake though still. Also have a ton of apples to use. Need a cooking day.

EugenesAxe Tue 24-Sep-13 09:41:13

Fucking time zones.

I am really genuinely striving for a poncetastic Christmas this year, as I am hosting (DPs, DPILs). I have narcissi bulbs for forcing, allium heads for spraying and everything who picked up Sarah Raven's Christmas for £1 at a book stall at a Summer fete then?

My ponceometer is always middling as I make my own mincemeat and stuffing, and own this, which I decorate with micro baubles and ivy and hang on our door. This year I might do homemade foodstuffs for DS' nursery teachers as well, and really set it jiggling.

gininteacupsandleavesonthelawn Tue 24-Sep-13 09:42:23

Yay!

JerseySpud Tue 24-Sep-13 09:56:57

Today i am starting the stitching of my christmas cards and tree decorations...

dialpforpizza Tue 24-Sep-13 10:32:34

Wow. I could only ever aspire to be this poncetastic.

envy

I could foresee getting poncy for free booze though. Was that an advertised offer or did you just strike it lucky IsaacCox?

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 10:40:15

It's advertised here dial. You have to spend £50 first though.

dialpforpizza Tue 24-Sep-13 10:45:44

Ooh thanks smile

Rowboat Tue 24-Sep-13 10:49:29

Yay! grin
I have plenty of time to ponce as on mat leave from end of Oct but probably no time to enjoy the results. dc2 due 21st Dec. Also this is my first Christmas in my own home!

Fubble Tue 24-Sep-13 11:00:10

Hurray! Marking my poncetastic place and looking to catching up at lunch (assuming I can hold out that long!!)

marssparklesdownonme Tue 24-Sep-13 11:42:39

I will be ponceing again this year. Got the hyacinth bulbs in pots in the dark already. I'll be making my Nigel Slater Christmas cake soon. Been getting out the nicest jars that I have saved for chutney making next week. I've been keeping an eye on the holly tree as its currently covered in berries. Also got a book of Scandinavian Christmas crafts on order at the library.Hurrah!

TheYamiOfYawn Tue 24-Sep-13 11:43:02

I have just bought some nice Christmas biscuit cutters in Aldi. This will (I hope) be my last Christmas in the house of cheesy 1970s student house decor as we are building an extension and getting rid of the vile filthy red paisley carpet so next year I will be able to do nice tasteful Nordic decor in my Danish modern inspired house. At the moment, beauty is not really an option.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Tue 24-Sep-13 12:06:33

Ready to ponce right here!

SugarMiceInTheRain Tue 24-Sep-13 12:09:57

Ooh ooh can I join in? bymoonlight I don't drink but make a fab non-alcoholic fruit punch. I generally use half red grape juice, half apple juice, pour in a pan, add orange and lemon slices, cloves, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg etc (or the cheating mulled wine spice sachets) and warm it on the hob as you would mulled wine. I 'feed' my alcohol-free Christmas cakes with alcohol-free Kopparberg pear cider which makes them delicious. Haven't started them yet though blush

I'm really in the mood for making mincemeat right now, but suffering with low blood pressure and feeling a bit faint every time I stand up so for now I will just methodically plan my poncetastic Christmas. I'm sure next year will be substantially less poncetastic as I am due in February so will have a crawler underfoot by then confused so have to make the most of it this year!

BeaWheesht Tue 24-Sep-13 12:17:38

Don't do that to me!!! It's dd's birthday today and I read your title and thought I'd celebrated it a day late!!!

StuntGirl Tue 24-Sep-13 12:42:35

Ohhh I want to join in for my first poncetastic Christmas!

In an effort to steal all your ideas get inspiration, could everyone share their proudest poncey item or moment?

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 24-Sep-13 13:09:14

I too have a naked wine voucher but mine was for switching energy through Uswitch, £45 of wine for the £4.99 delivery. I didn't see it advertised so it was a nice surprise.

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 24-Sep-13 13:10:03

Ooh I'm going to go looking for the Aldi biscuit cutters, have they got lots of Christmas stuff in there already?

MrsPnut Tue 24-Sep-13 13:14:17

I am planning to begin my Christmas baking this weekend and have been planning meals to run my freezers down in preparation.

I have bought a new notebook for planning purposes, and a new pen too!

ConsiderablyBiggerBuns Tue 24-Sep-13 13:14:25

Christmas starts on 22nd September in my head (birthday on 21st September) so I've had to spend the last couple of days marking time re-reading the 2010 thread, so I'm delighted this has been started today. I particularly love all the possibilities of a poncetastic Christmas at this time of the year, before mild anxiety sets in in Mid-October, swiftly followed by serious fretting by Bonfire Night and out and out panic at the lack of Christmas prep of any variety, poncetastic or pedestrian, by December 1st. Anyways, please ponce away, will be following -already pre-ordered the Mary Berry book which didn't even know about - what fun!

TheOnlyPink Tue 24-Sep-13 13:16:23

Oooh, been looking forward to this! Going to try my best for a poncetsstic Christmas this year, everyone comes here and my mom cooks the dinner in a truely poncetastic fashion, so I need to up my game.

sara I was in there yesterday and they haven't got much tbh.

cheekycherryza Tue 24-Sep-13 14:07:24

Oh crud... just found out DF from overseas are coming to stay for the month of december so best get making a christmas cake then. Non alcoholic christmas cake at that since they don't drink.

Slippersocklover Tue 24-Sep-13 14:08:17

Hello, may I join you? I am blush to admit that I have lurked on the poncetastic thread for the past couple of years, but this year have decided to take the plunge and join in! Successful Poncing may be more difficult this year however, as I'm pregnant with DC1, due mid December.

Some of my poncetastic credentials:

I always make the Christmas cake (Delia's recipe) and last year had my first foray into homemade Christmas pudding. I wasn't massively impressed with the results though, so I'm looking for an alternative recipe.

I change my usual rug, curtains and cushions in the living room for ones in red, creams and neutrals from mid November, all the better to complement festive decorations.

Last year I ignored DH's singing Santa and old baubles, and scoured Wilkinsons and John Lewis local boutiques for tasteful Nordic style ones in shades of red and neutrals, supplemented by 'heirloom' baubles from my childhood.

I also made quilted stockings for DH and I from Nordic style fabric, a la kirstie (and will now have to make another for the forthcoming baby)

So far this year I have plans for pre-baby maternity leave poncing, including advance baking and freezing Christmas gingerbread biscotti and mince pies to feed to visitors.... I may be living in a dreamworld though grin

BellaOfTheBalls Tue 24-Sep-13 14:13:53

editededition may I also have your Christmas cake recipe? I used to amalgamate a Rose Prince recipe with another one but I cannot find the other recipe!

HerrenaHarridan Tue 24-Sep-13 14:35:11

Checking in for a poncetastic Christmas, I always swore it wouldn't happens to me (planning Xmas in August) but I has and I don't care, in fact I'm very excited!

My Christmas will be slightly restrained but every thing I so will be hand crafted to perfection.

So far I have

kept Christmas cards and scraps if wrapping paper from last year to make cards this year

Bought several of dds smallers presents including a growing bag of stocking/advent calendar filler

Made jam

Decided what's for dinner

Invited another single mum with no family over (which made her cry)

Be aware folks Christmas is a hard time to be a single parent do you know anyone who would really appreciate the company

Can I join in? I lurked on the thread last year, but I need to be more poncetastic this year. Last year I had a totally normal christmas but with poncetastic wrapping of presents. I love wrapping presents.

Editededition Tue 24-Sep-13 16:04:27

Bella
recipe has winged its way to your Inbox smile
(hopefully)

whattodoo Tue 24-Sep-13 16:22:24

Edited I'd love you cake recipe, please. Have just got in from work, so please don't think I wasn't interested when you offered hours ago!

Editededition Tue 24-Sep-13 16:47:11

Don't remember 'offering' smile but am very very happy to share.
( no intention to hijack, OP. Sorry ) here it is for anyone who wants it ................

Pre-amble
I make mid-September, leave untouched until November then prick holes all over with a carving fork (cocktail sticks are for the faint hearted lol) give hefty doses of brandy once every two weeks (so three drenches, in all, before icing)

Quantities are for 8" square tin(deep not shallow), or 9" round)
Oven temp - original instructions start at 325 and reduce to 300. Fan ovens are a nightmare for Christmas cake in my opinion, but these days I start at 160 and reduce to 140'ish.
Balance it with how fierce your own oven is!

Same applies to cooking time. Original recipe is approx 90 mins at the higher temp, then 2 and a half/three hours at the lower temp. This year I did mine (double sized) for 45 mins at the higher temp, and then about 90 mins at the lower.
You just have to keep nose tuned to the smell, and check regularly ( can you tell that I really, really hate fan ovens lol )

Line the tin with three layers of greaseproof.

Ingredients :
10oz unsalted butter
10oz dark soft brown sugar
5 large eggs -beaten
1 tablespoon black treacle
Grated rind on 2 lemons
2 tablespoons brandy or rum
12oz plain flour
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1/2 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
1 1/2 lbs currants
3/4lb sultanas
3/4 lb raisins
4oz blanched almonds, chopped
4oz glace cherries, quartered (I use 6oz, halved, as I like to find pieces of cherry)
4oz chopped mixed peel

Method

1 Prepare all the nuts and cherries first...as it takes a while.
Weigh out the sultanas, raisins and currants into a large bowl, and mix well together to break lumps and distribute evenly.

2 In another bowl (large as possible) cream the butter and sugar (feel free to use electric whisk)
Beat in the black treacle and lemon rinds.

3 Add the beaten egg a little at a time (throw in a handful of the measured flour if it looks like curdling). When you get to the last bit of egg, mix the brandy with it, and then beat this in.

4Add the flour and spices and beat into the mix

5 Add in the cherries, nuts and mixed peel, then start adding the main fruit mix. Once it gets a bit hard for the mixer - stir with a wooden spoon. Ensure all fruit is combined with cake mix.

6 Pack firmly into the prepared tin and bake in centre of oven (^ see pre-amble^ )

7 Leave to cool in the tin for at least an hour before turning out, and then leave to cool completely before wrapping and storing.
(tip - leave the layer of greaseproof on the cake until you are ready to brandy it up)

Attributed to ........ummm....???...well..... I think it may have been my grandmother? Or Marguerite Patten? Maybe? Its been in my little red book for nearly 40 years, so your guess is as good as mine!!

Do let me know how it goes for you smile
I really have never had a failure with it.

I already have the Cath Kidson organiser. <gloat>

BUT, last years Christmas cake was a huge failure. It was eggy blush. I obviously didn't cook it long enough. Oh the shame. I was so traumatised I wrapped it in foil and shoved it up at the back of the cupboard.

It's still there...

poncing has commenced so far I have made 9 stockings. is a pity I am a shocking cook/cake decorator but ill give it a go!

Zeeky Tue 24-Sep-13 18:23:27

Woo hoo! Poncetastic thread is here at last!!

I LOVE planning a poncetastic Christmas, but as it is just me, DH and Ds1 & 2, we don't have a particularly poncey Chrismas day itself.

I am very excited to be having a new fire surround complete with large mantel piece installed next week, as last year (first Christmas in this house) we had no mantel to drape with poncey swags and nowhere to hang the children's stockings! So I'll be keeping my eye out on Pinterest and in here for mantel-poncing ideas.

Already made a ton of jam, chutney, chilli jelly, crab apple jelly, rhubarb gin & blackberry schnapps for foodie hampers. Also planning piccalilli for the first time and maybe mincemeat. Always make my own pastry for mincepies but have always bought the mincemeat. Any reccommendations for mincemeat recipes? And when is the best time to make it?

Last year I also made my own wreath for the front door (went to an evening class) and this year we have booked the florist for the school PTA, so will be making an even better one!

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 18:30:35

Zeeky I used this recipe last year for mince meat. T'was gorgeous. I can't remember how far in advance I made it though, sorry blush It does say at least 2 weeks before though and that it keeps for 6 months.

I've made a spreadsheet today. All colour co-ordinated and satisfying grin

IsaacCox Tue 24-Sep-13 18:31:46

Whoops I meant mincemeat blush

CatAmongThePigeons Tue 24-Sep-13 19:49:37

My first poncetastic Christmas, it's rather exciting!

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 19:56:17

Thank you for all the non alcoholic suggestions, have also trawled the 2012 thread for ideas thanks

So what did everyone make last year that worked really well? I'm thinking of drying oranges but I'm not sure if my oven will be any good for it.

Also thinking of pickling pears. Has anyone done that before? What do you serve them with - slow cooked ham?

Chubfuddler Tue 24-Sep-13 20:56:45

<shame>

I have barber made mincemeat before. If I buy Kilmer jars how do I sterilise them - google suggests I put them in the oven (WTF?) or just in the dishwasher on their own without detergent. Would someone take pity and tell me what to do please?

Chubfuddler Tue 24-Sep-13 20:57:19

*never

STUPID IOS 7

MumofWombat Tue 24-Sep-13 21:02:07

Totally going for a poncy Christmas this year!
So far I have made on the food side - marmalade & pickled onions. Going to have Christmas pudding cheesecake this year (am down under so not to much hot stuff is wanted) and I'm making up the recipe based on my baked lemon cheesecake so I may just have to trial it and eat it all.
On the crafty front so far I have made DS an advent calendar, DD (will be her first Christmas) a Santa sack, a festive cloth book and an adorable little dress, some Nordic inspired bunting, DDs godmother is going to get some dinosaur socks and I've still to make a nativity scene and a costume for a ken doll so he can become 'Harold the elf on a shelf'. I totally think Harold is a great elf name.

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 21:17:44

Oven or dishwasher is fine Chubfuddler.

I put mine in the dishwasher on the hottest wash.

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 21:18:35

MumofWombat - I am in awe and very jealous of your crafting skills and the fact you live in OZ envy

Chubfuddler Tue 24-Sep-13 21:19:08

Thanks I will give it a go. I noticed sainsburys was out of stock of Kilner jars the other day, must be the pickling, jamming and bottling season

GrandPoohBah Tue 24-Sep-13 21:24:45

Huzzah! The poncetastic thread!

I fully intended last year to be poncetastic, anticipating that DC1 would arrive a couple of weeks late thus giving me LOADS of maternity leave for faffing about with cinnamon sticks and tasteful baubles. As it was she arrived on the 21st November so all bets were off - IIRC we only (half) decorated our tree on Christmas Eve...

bymoonlight Tue 24-Sep-13 21:26:34

I got mine from Clas Ohlson - which isn't much use if there isn't one in your town.

Lakeland do them.

While I am inspired I have some important poncing questions for the senior poncers here present.

How do I sterilize containers to make booze in? I have sloes and gin, I need to combine, but my recipe says to sterilize the container first.

Where can I get decent-ish garlands from where the price won't make my eyes water? Our decorations have ended at the tree in previous years, which simply will not do this year.

How do you decorate with holly? Last year I went out and cut a load with dd1 which then sat in unappealing heaps around the house spiking people when they went too close. I have this image in my head of decorating the fireplace, but no idea how to achieve it.

Thanks to anyone who can help me take my first poncing baby steps!

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Tue 24-Sep-13 21:27:34

I am so ready to have a poncetastic Christmas this year. For the first time ever I'm having my parents and sister to stay for Christmas now that we have moved into a proper grown up house with room for guests.

So far we have ordered a new sofa to arrive before Christmas, and getting a new TV soon (target to get in time for Christmas).

I have bought the ingredients for the Christmas cake - just need to get the tin from Lakeland.

I have also especially bought a note book for Christmas planning which I'm already using to compile ideas.

Currently in denial about incompatibility of
- working full time,
- having a DH who also works full time,
- having a 2 year old who takes forever to do anything,
- general domestic goddess aspirations,
and the preparation required to host the poncetastic Christmas I'm dreaming of.

smile

IcedTeaOneSugar Tue 24-Sep-13 21:28:03

We're away for a week until the 23rd Dec, anyone got any thoughts on what I can leave around the house before we go, to ensure sufficient festive scents on our return (I usually burn yankee candles excessively in the week or so before Christmas). I was thinking about dried oranges in some sort of home made Potpourri.

One of my questions was answered while I was typing it, hooray! You lot are psychic.

One further question - when I make sloe gin, can a get away with using cheap gin, or should I use decent stuff?

Thank you!

Rubybrazilianwax Tue 24-Sep-13 22:22:55

Ooooh so glad to see this has made a return. I am very pleased to say my last Christmas was picture perfect poncetasticness [smug]
I hope to maintain this standard with all your help grin
So far I have been pinning lovely ideas, I have a few presents bought and have made a list of a few house projects I want to get finished up before the Christmas decorating starts. Oh and I have been gathering pine cones.
My contribution to the thread will be decorating/floral displays/crafts! Hope I can be of help.
Fr anyone making sloe gin. Just had a chat with my neighbour at the weekend and he told me the sloes are much better picked after the first frost? Don't know if anyone has heard this before or not. It makes sense when you think of it as grapes taste really sweet when they are frozen so perhaps the frost sweetens the sloes a bit.

Rubybrazilianwax Tue 24-Sep-13 22:24:29

Attheendoftheday most people just use the cheap stuff

IceTea if you like your Yankees what about the scented reeds?

(Basically twiggy bits in a bottle of scented oil. The more sticks you put in, the stronger the scent. More so if you put it somewhere warmish )

I'm sure they'll do some festive flavours nearer the time.

Thank you Ruby I was hoping I could!

Oh yes. Lidl booze is grand for home made booze pimping. I do keep fancy bottles particularly Hendricks gin bottles which re pleasingly opaque.

FixItUpChappie Tue 24-Sep-13 23:20:17

Oooh! I am moving in and marking my place. I have a truly pinterest-tastic child's birthday to organize to the minute detail like a lunatic before I can set my sights on Christmas though grin

Editededition Wed 25-Sep-13 05:14:06

Ruby the "wait for the first frost" before picking sloes can mean they are all picked before you get there! Frosting doesn't make a difference in my experience, but the best tip I heard - for those who think a nip of frost is needed -is to pop them into the freezer overnight after picking and pricking.

IcedTeaOneSugar Wed 25-Sep-13 07:28:09

70 I tried those when we went away in the summer, I expected to come home to a lovely vanilla scented lounge but it didn't really work.

Although, that was a set from Sainsbury's maybe I should splash out on a yankee set for Christmas.

bouncychair Wed 25-Sep-13 07:39:50

I'm joining! DD was only 6 weeks old at Christmas last year but this year I am planning on having the Christmas that is in my head.

I need to get some fabric ordered for my stockings (4 needed), tree skirt and tree decorations.

Hoping to make some mincemeat soon and am planning on making my first Christmas pudding this year. Does anyone have a fool proof recipe? And how far in advance do they have to be made?

PaperPomPom Wed 25-Sep-13 07:41:43

I so want to join in here but DH won't pull his finger out and decide what our Christmas plans are.

I however LOVE poncetastic things regardless of season, so can refuse to make an exception and do Christmas regardless of where we spend it.

I have a cupboard full of jam and compote made from the early fruits, cookie dough will probably be done this weekend and frozen until near the time, and I'm already planning my fudge schedule. I discovered a beautiful yarn shop in town this weekend so I'm thinking about what I can knit in time and will pop in at the weekend.

DumSpiroSpero Wed 25-Sep-13 07:50:52

Edited I think you may be right with Marguerite Patten - that's the recipe my mum and nan used since before I was born and I've just turned 38!

Editededition Wed 25-Sep-13 10:27:24

Good grief, now I really feel old grin
Guess it proves it really is a good recipe, though grin grin

OctoberMoon Wed 25-Sep-13 11:00:57

I have my cath kidston christmas organiser at the ready and am ready to ponce! Will read all posts later.

Chubfuddler Wed 25-Sep-13 12:34:15

I make my cake and pudding on stir up Sunday which I think is the second Sunday in November?

CatAmongThePigeons Wed 25-Sep-13 12:51:29

Stir up Sunday is the last Sunday before advent, so IIRC it's 24 November this year.

I must remember not to over feed the cake wih brandy this year. It was more alcohol than cake by Christmas day blush

bymoonlight Wed 25-Sep-13 13:37:07

I was going to do my cake this year but think I will wait till the 24th now

bymoonlight Wed 25-Sep-13 13:37:23

*this weekend!

Suddengeekgirl Wed 25-Sep-13 14:16:56

Does anyone have a good mincemeat recipe?

I made my own mince pies last year with shop bought mincemeat. They were yummy but I want to be super-ponce this year! smile

farrowandbawl Wed 25-Sep-13 14:20:31

I'm ordering my tree on Friday and going Christmas shopping next Thursday. I've ordered some more baubles from John Lewis..and found holly to pick for the living room.

I'm going to get the kids to write their last lists this week.

I CAN'T WAIT!

IsaacCox Wed 25-Sep-13 14:20:59

I use this one Sudden

Suddengeekgirl Wed 25-Sep-13 14:26:19

Thanks issac! smile

We have some of SIL Brantley apples so that would be nice! smile

Best get myself some Kilner jars.

Suddengeekgirl Wed 25-Sep-13 14:29:00

issac do you think I could substitute the whiskey for dark rum in the mincemeat? We don't have much of a drinks cabinet!

IsaacCox Wed 25-Sep-13 14:59:29

Yes, I think that would be great smile

Suddengeekgirl Wed 25-Sep-13 15:03:56

grin
Think ikea might be my best bet for Kilner jars, better add them to the list....

Rubybrazilianwax Wed 25-Sep-13 15:54:03

Editededition thats a good tip about the freezer and the sloes thanks! (I hope the sloes wont all be picked though, they are along my own lane!)
Apparently this year is a bumper crop for berries. Has anyone a recipe for blackberry vodka thats tried and tested.

attheendoftheday I tend to buy a cheapish plain green garland with wire branches. (Not floppy one) Using this as a base I wire pine cones, faux berries, cinnamon sticks etc on (packet of florist wires is a £1 or so ) Then about a week before you can wire on holly and fresh evergreen. Also a good idea to keep a look out for branches of berries, or gold/silver faux leaves that you can add to it. (Dunelm mill is great for these)

If you want a fresh holly fireplace to last a few weeks you need to put it in oasis.
I use icecream tubs cut down to about 3cm high. In a row accross the mantel. Put soaked oasis in these and add your holly. I put some nice pillar candles (about 5 of different heights) in before I start the greenery. You can add a few bits of trailing ivy too hanging down

ThinkIveLostIt Wed 25-Sep-13 16:48:09

this thread has me so excited - it's my fist mumsnet christmas! pray tell me how do i mark my place?

TapTapBangBang Wed 25-Sep-13 16:53:36

I was just thinking 'I wonder when the poncetastic Christmas thread will start?'

Ruby thank you so much, that's really helpful. I shall start collecting icecream tubs forthwith, and I'll look out for suitable garlands closer to the time.

SugarHut Wed 25-Sep-13 18:07:06

Oooh oooh oooooooh! I've been waiting for this to start. Reading with glee, and already printed out the cake recipe. FYI, I did the Waitrose recipe last year...bloody awful, so many nuts in it that it could not bind together, the whole thing just crumbled when you tried to pick a piece up. Cost an unbelievable amount to make too. Tasted fab in it's defence. Not the point.

Also, I'm wanting to do goose this year, (aware of the lack of meat and fat a plenty) would be it be terribly naff if I asked the butchers to make me a stuffed goose crown? Has anyone ever had one?

Think now you've posted this thread will come up in your 'threads I'n on' list.

Sugar we do goose every year. We've motivated by the fact we can get it free from a gamekeeper friend. We have to pluck it ourselves, though!

I find the Delia recipe works well (i'm actually a veggie, so I've never tasted it, but dp thinks it does). Goose can tend to be dry, so be careful not to cook it too long.

I like that goose is not too big, as I don't like the idea of having left over turkey meals for weeks after the big day.

Also, keep the fat for roasties another time, or cook the roasties in with the goose.

TheYamiOfYawn Wed 25-Sep-13 19:57:14

For poncetastic presents, I am planning on getting a load of cheap but good quality notebooks (muji or Clairfontaine) and adding fancy fabric covers/ribbons/envelopes inside. This ought to work as a teacher present, too, and can be made well in advance, allowing me to spend December drinking mulled wine and collecting greenery.

sybilfaulty Wed 25-Sep-13 23:42:19

Marking my place. With a grosgrain ribbon avec holly attached.

This is utterly fabulous. Thank you.

MisselthwaiteManor Thu 26-Sep-13 08:18:11

I was planning on making my cake this weekend but I think I'm going to wait for stir up Sunday now.

I am going to make my own Christmas pudding and mincemeat for the first time ever this year too. And pickles onions, how long in advance do pickled onions need to be done?

MisselthwaiteManor Thu 26-Sep-13 08:18:50

*pickled

Editededition Thu 26-Sep-13 09:03:54

Sarah they keep for ages, so could be done now. I did mine last weekend.

Re stir up Sunday....I always thought that applied to puddings & mincemeat, as cakes are better for having a longer time to mature??
Best Christmas cake I ever made was done for a christening the previous June (cancelled in very sad circumstances).
I used the cake for Christmas instead...and it was fab

bymoonlight Thu 26-Sep-13 09:40:25

Oh maybe I should do my cake this weekend then.

I better add the ingredients to my shopping list again

SugarMiceInTheRain Thu 26-Sep-13 10:35:47

Ooh I think I shall make my Christmas cake this weekend. Made mincemeat yesterday - 6 fair sized jars of the stuff. It tastes fab. I'm having an irritated morning as I've been making cinnamon rolls (not for Christmas, just for scoffing over the next couple of days) and halfway through making the frosting have run out of icing sugar angry Sure I had another couple of boxes stashed away!

LazyFaire Thu 26-Sep-13 10:51:37

OK Poncers -

I have a sewing machine and can probably make myself do some work 2-5 hours a week up till Christmas.

Please link or describe to me lots of small pretty things that I can make (I'm thinking small tree decorations or drawer freshener type things) that my aunties will like! I am determined to make not buy at least something this year.

And what will I need to make them (currently scouring the various quilting squares on ebay, but what will I forget to buy!)

CatAmongThePigeons Thu 26-Sep-13 11:46:30

I think, stir up Sunday is about Christmas puddings? I remember it being on the Archers last year. I would make Christmas cake in advance as it is so much better when matured!

I can't decide whether to make one big Christmas cake, or lots of smaller ones, I was thinking of making mini Christmas puddings too, would it be miniature overkill?

Slippersocklover Thu 26-Sep-13 11:54:21

Cat, I love the idea of the miniature puddings and cakes! So cute and so much opportunity for decorative poncery on individual cakes. Would you get a special tin to make then in? I've looked at them before but never been able to justify the cost for the amount of use it would get.

CatAmongThePigeons Thu 26-Sep-13 12:03:11

I was looking at making one big Christmas and then cutting them out into individual ones not for the trimmings, oh no I've seen some mini pudding bowls on Amazon for £9.73 and they're suitable for the pressure cooker and would be perfect miniatures for Christmas puddings.

Some of the mini cake tins are £££ and there's better places to spend money on poncery!

Editededition Thu 26-Sep-13 12:04:09

I make small cakes for other people ....but actually cheat and just cut a larger square into 4!! no way of telling once marzipan and icing are on, and I find the bake is a lot better than when trying to cook very small cakes smile

MrsHoratioNelson Thu 26-Sep-13 12:16:50

I cant believe I missed the beginning of this! DC1 will be about 10 weeks old and we're going to my DM's for Christmas but I will make it as poncetastic as I can with a newborn. Next year we'll have a 14 month old rampaging around, so my tree plans might have to be scaled back then.

forcookssake Thu 26-Sep-13 12:58:52

Yesssss! I am here, would have arrived sooner but had to fight my way out from barrels of Christmas pudding vodka which is steeping and glass jars and bottles awaiting sterilisation grin joyous times!

PistachioTruffle Thu 26-Sep-13 13:17:19

Aha, I can't believe I didn't think of cutting them into 4 shock When do you divide them, just after baking or jut before you marzipan and ice them?

Jdub Thu 26-Sep-13 14:05:33

I would divide them just as I was about to ice them (in fact that's what i did last year!)

I am new to this thread,but am actively embracing ALL things poncetastic - and imagine, my joy to hear today that my Mary Berry Christmas book has been despatched!!! whoop whoop!

I have seen people use baked bean tins for mini round cake tins.

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 26-Sep-13 15:56:24

Now is a good time to pick seed heads for spraying. Allium, honesty and aquilegia are the ones I've picked for my christmas arrangements

Slippersocklover Thu 26-Sep-13 16:32:05

Thankyou for the mini cake advice, I shall be the proud maker of poncey small Christmas cakes this year grin I may give the small ones away as gifts and make a traditional larger one to keep. I can imagine DH's hmm response if I start hoarding bean tins though!

ringaringarosy Thu 26-Sep-13 17:59:09

I want a poncetastic christmas but i dont really want to make anything myself,i want like a faux poncetastic christmas..

Chubfuddler Thu 26-Sep-13 18:04:23

A faux poncetastic Christmas is entirely possible. It's expensive but entirely possible.

Waitrose, John Lewis, notonthehighstreet are your friends.

BitchTeeRiskit Thu 26-Sep-13 18:16:29

Thanks for the tip about freezing the sloe berries, I keep pestering my Dad to come out and pick some with me but he keeps insisting we wait till frost. Last year when we went out the pickings were slim to say the least!

bymoonlight Thu 26-Sep-13 18:18:57

I do a mixture of making some food in advance (pickled onions, chutney, red cabbage etc) and then I order from M&S Food To Order so on the day we can have a lovely meal but we can just heat it up and spend more time playing with the DC.

Talking of which, when is the M&S Christmas food going to appear on the website? I love planning what we are going to order!

SugarMiceInTheRain Thu 26-Sep-13 18:29:55

I have used baked bean tins and suchlike as mini Christmas cake tins but prefer to do the big square cake cut into 4 method. Much less fiddly and less guessing required to work out the cooking time! grin

IsaacCox Thu 26-Sep-13 18:44:33

Thanks for the advice about cutting a large Christmas cakes into smaller ones. I would never have thought of that blush and it saves me spending money on new tins!

My Kirstie's Christmas crafts and Christmas crafts by Catherine Woram have arrived today. Not had chance to look through them yet though. Just waiting for my Cath Kidston organiser now.

I have also ordered a jam pan, funnel, wax disks and labels for the jams and chutneys I'm going to make. This was the cheapest jam pan I could see on Amazon, hoping it'll be good.

I've decided the things that I'm making to go in jars this year are-
mincemeat
Nigella's chilli jam
Mango chutney- not sure which recipe yet
Mary Berry's Christmas chutney
Chocolate and banana jam
Strawberry and champagne jam with edible gold glitter in
And ^possibly^ bacon jam

NannyPlumForPM Thu 26-Sep-13 19:05:08

Marking my VERY important place (name change from kirstoll) but I officially can't start until DD's birthday 21-oct. see you all again then! (recipes being gathered, tinsel being shredded and woven together, garlands being designed, candle holder being MADE- it's chriiiiiiiiiiiissssstmasss)

CatAmongThePigeons Thu 26-Sep-13 19:06:48

My goodness, bacon jam! I think DH would appreciate the novelty of that and glittery strawberry and champagne jam sounds fabulously poncetastic!

DearPrudence Thu 26-Sep-13 19:16:06

Marking place for another year of poncery. I'm probably not hosting this year, which gives less opportunity for showing off, but frees up quite a bit of time. Chilli jam is definitely on my list for this year. Not sure what else yet.

ThiefofTime Thu 26-Sep-13 19:17:18

So exciting. I am sloe picking tomorrow. Was going to wait but this thread has got me in the mood.

Yay. Places marking so I can catch up later!

I loved your thread last year but found it too late. thanks

SugarHut Thu 26-Sep-13 19:34:48

Isaac, the glitter jam...ooohhhhhhh my god, the glitter jam. I actually love you.

IsaacCox Thu 26-Sep-13 19:36:59

grin

IsaacCox Thu 26-Sep-13 19:37:53

Tbh, I might just put the glitter in everything grin

F A B!!

IsaacCox Thu 26-Sep-13 19:53:38

This is the glitter I bought.

Flozle Thu 26-Sep-13 20:45:49

Bought the cheese making shennanigans from Lakeland so I can have home produced cheese on my cheeseboard this year. Or maybe next year...

TwentiethCenturyGirl Thu 26-Sep-13 21:10:02

Oh wise ones, I'm thinking of making some sort of a cranberry chutney for turkey related leftovers. I've seen a recipe in Nigella Christmas and in Delia. Any recommendations?

bymoonlight Thu 26-Sep-13 21:31:18

Oh wow - homemade cheese! Sounds amazing.

I have peeled 1kg of shallots ready to pickle for tomorrow. I can only smell onion now ...

Right I've caught up. May I apologise in advance for being the poster that asks the stupid questions. Anyone that was on the Sewing Bee thread can attest to that.

So I'd like to know if any of you reuse the decorations, stockings etc that you made last year?
I made some that I want to keep and eventually build up a good stash.

Also, those doing biscuits and cookies etc, do you make them now and freeze it or all in a rush at the end?

Does anyone have recipes for ones that freeze well and are Christmassy?

Last question, I promise grin. When you talk about your Christmas organisers, are they specifically sectioned 'cause I want one?

oxton Thu 26-Sep-13 22:00:15

Cannot believe how excited I am by this thread.

In fact, so excited, that this is the first time I have ever added a message blush

Don't have anything useful to contribute thus far but am looking forward to a Poncetastic Christmas. grin

ethelb Thu 26-Sep-13 22:05:03

Brilliant! I got the fabric for DPs Christmas PJs I imported from the US today.
It is perfect and a weight I just couldn't find in the UK so the massive surprise import tax is hugely justified confused
Luckily I got the vintage Don Draper pattern free from my aunt's vintage shop.
I will be going yarn shopping for sone knitted gifts. The shop is so posh they will have a natural dyed yarn pop up shop and offer tours to a local alpaca farm that supplies them with yarn.
Oh, and I got a prize in the village fete for the piccallili recipe i shared on the last thread.

Is that poncetastic enough for you?!!!

ethelb Thu 26-Sep-13 22:06:56

And anyone wanting to lighten their wallets further.... William Sonoma now deliver to the UK.

TheOnlyPink Thu 26-Sep-13 22:10:56

TheOneWithTheHair This is the Christmas Organiser that I had seen people on here talking about. I am waiting for it to be dispatched. grin

Thank you TheOnlyPink. I've just ordered one. grin

OliviaMMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 26-Sep-13 22:20:27

Hello
I just wanted to come on and say, cos I have never been able to do so before and probably won't again
I won't be having a ponce-tastic Christmas in any way this year because I'm upduffed (Will be 35 weeks at start of advent) and don't even know if I'll be at home for it.

BUT BUT BUT I have done all my preps - and bought a v tasteful faux (i know that technically thats an oxymoron but it does look loverly) pre-lit
tree for hassle-prevention

Though I will be having a lovely natural wreath for my door made by a friend.

Baubles will be navy and gold this year.
Bought my glittery advent calendars
Done everything for stockings except the Naice chocolate coins which I haven't seen yet.
There are some damsons in my freezer but since I won't be able to enjoy it this year I may make the gin/vodka and save until next.

I did find some GORGEOUS fabric on eBay today and then thought it would wait until next year

Happy Poncetastic Prepping all of you

<jinglebells>

PS nice thread about poncerific wrapping here

SugarHut Thu 26-Sep-13 22:23:27

Bastardos. Not only do I not require another bloody Christmas folder, I'm also now going to have the hassle of transferring everything out of the old one and into this new one I have just ordered too. All because the deer on the front is cute. I don't even bloody like Cath Kidston!! Do NOT tell my friends blush

I hope you have a good Christmas Olivia but please could you make the link clicky.

Good luck with the twins. thanks

OliviaMMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 26-Sep-13 22:44:24

TheOneWithTheHair

I hope you have a good Christmas Olivia but please could you make the link clicky.

Good luck with the twins. thanks

Done
And thanks

SuperMuddle Thu 26-Sep-13 22:45:54

Ooh, I've just found this thread, but feel I belong here...

As I am upduffed with DC#1, this will be my last child-free Christmas, and would love to make it as ponce-tastic as possible!

I will probably mostly lurk, but wanted to say hello to all. Right, so I'm off to draw up lists of presents to make, mostly food/booze-related, naturally. grin

Thank you.

TheYamiOfYawn Thu 26-Sep-13 22:55:03

TheOneWithTheHair - I reuse the stuff that can be re-use, eg stockings. Salt dough decorations usually last a couple of years and go mouldy. Biscuit decorations get nibbled throughout the Christmas period until they are all eaten by Twelf Night.

MrsBeeZed Thu 26-Sep-13 23:18:17

I'm in. Marking place and ready to ponce grin

IsaacCox I just spent an hour looking through your recipes - they are fantastic. I've bookmarked the chilli jam, chutney and chocolate and banana jam, although I'm not sure about the latter!

MisselthwaiteManor Fri 27-Sep-13 07:28:20

I am going to make that strawberry and champagne jam, it looks amazing! Not sure I can be trusted with a pot of edible glitter, glittery sprouts anyone?

Editededition Fri 27-Sep-13 07:32:20

Isaac loving your recipes! ....and found myself in hysterics after checking your glitter link:
These non-toxic glitters are not harmful when eaten but are not EU classified as a food product as they are not digested when eaten but pass through the system undigested

Surely you get the award for most poncetastic concept ever ......glittery poo!! (the gift that keeps on giving?!?!)

<<imagines MIL in utter panic, phoning NHS Direct for advice>>

Loving it grin grin grin

IsaacCox Fri 27-Sep-13 07:35:05

grin I saw that Edited which is maybe why I'm making it

grin @ glittery sprouts. I think we could have a lot of fun with this!

girlywhirly Fri 27-Sep-13 08:18:06

Olivia, we like Divine chocolate coins (fairtrade choc) which are sold in the local Oxfam shop. There are lots of other chocolate treats available as well.

This year I am poncing modestly. But I shall be making fig and sherry mincemeat as usual for sugar crust pastry mince pies, vanilla ice cream in my machine to go with them, and my favourite chestnut and bacon stuffing to freeze in advance for the Christmas lunch.

Last year I made an alternative wreath for outside in the shape of a five pointed star, made from red dogwood stems bound together in bunches, and decorated with ivy trails and bunches of variegated holly. I may do the same this year if there are enough straight stems, if not I shall re use the old one to make up the numbers of stems.

aliciagardner Fri 27-Sep-13 08:36:41

Hello poncers. Looking forward to another Christmas of full-on poncetasticness! When this thread starts I know it's time to get the vodka and lemons ready for the homemade limoncello. I'll be making chilli jam again this year, as it was fab (nigella recipe).

I've bought some scandi looking wrapping paper from b&m (bargain poncetastic Christmas needed in my household) and will be using garden twine and attaching a candy cane to all pressies this year. Thinking about treating myself to new tree lights as I got fed up and shoved the old ones away last year all tangled (after trying to untangle for an hour!). So now I have to decide - coloured or warm white? I have some time to think about it smile

Still on the hunt for the perfect red berry wreath that doesn't cost a fortune and is not too fake looking. If anyone sees one, please let me know! Wilko looked promising last year but turned out to be fakey close up. No money for beautiful, expensive ones, must be beautiful and cheap.

Looking forward to getting poncing! Pinterest board is slowly expanding..

SuperMuddle Fri 27-Sep-13 11:00:14

I've just rediscovered my Pinterest! Wedding-related boards have been removed, to make way for all things poncerifically Christmassy. Many happy hours to be spent... <rubs hands with glee>

IsaacCox Fri 27-Sep-13 11:07:03

My Cath Kidston organiser has arrived! Off for a look smile

IsaacCox Fri 27-Sep-13 11:10:20

I forgot to say the edible glitter has arrived too grin

MrsHoratioNelson Fri 27-Sep-13 13:08:56

Popping in to say that I have just received Aldi's special buys email - A3 and A4 laminator and pouches available from Sunday... details here

chicaguapa Fri 27-Sep-13 13:23:39

shock

This thread makes me feel a lot better about having spent the entire evening yesterday watching Japanese people wrap gifts on youtube. blush

SuperMuddle Fri 27-Sep-13 13:48:48

You mean not everyone actively seeks out, and gets excited by, different ways of wrapping presents? Weirdos...

I've just emerged, bleary eyed, from the clutches of Pinterest, thinking it might be time for a mid-morning snack, to find it's nearly 2pm. Oops...

rootypig Fri 27-Sep-13 17:15:25

Am loving all this.

Thanks Isaac for the mincemeat recipe, am in Los Angeles [grump] so will definitely have to make my own for the first time. Am excited about stir up Sunday. Anyone have a killer Christmas pud recipe?

My poncetastic contribution for today is christmas pudding chocolates, which are so easy and great poncey gifts for neighbours / petit fours for after dinner.

Crumble shop bought (yes!) fruit cake into a bowl and add enough booze of your choice to make it just moist enough to stick together (be cautious, it will go soggy in a flash). Roll into balls (individual chocolate size), it will go doughy, CHILL the balls, then coat (dip) in melted chocolate, milk or dark according to preference. (Don't use cadburys, it's too sweet, supermarket own belgian stuff is a good bet). Cool til set on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper. Then drizzle white chocolate over and finish with a little snip of red glace cherry and angelica (green). All you glitter heads can also add a sprinkle of that. They are SO poncey and cute and more importantly outrageously delicious.

IsaacCox Fri 27-Sep-13 17:32:04

You're welcome rootypig. Jealous of you being in LA- I have family there. I'm definitely going to make those christmas pudding chocolates, they sound amazing. Thanks for sharing!

I've been trying to find an organiser that I really like but nothing has switched my lights on - any suggestions or links pleeeease?

rootypig Fri 27-Sep-13 18:05:19

Don't be jealous Isaac, it is so un-Christmassy and they wouldn't know ponce if it fell into their cornflakes [judgey pants]. Fortunately I am back in the UK in November and will be filling my suitcase with suet and mixed peel grin

Barbeasty Fri 27-Sep-13 18:06:48

You can get the divine chocolate coins on this site . They have some other nice bits, and the cards are normally good quality.

Editededition Fri 27-Sep-13 18:16:22

rooty ...take a drive out to Palm Springs.... they used to have a seriously poncey Christmas shop on Palm Canyon Drive.
(couple of really nice shops and coffee stops too smile ) Worth checking to see if its still there, maybe?

<wails> I want to come back!!

IsaacCox Fri 27-Sep-13 18:20:16

rooty grin I can just imagine a suitcase full of suet and mixed peel!

I love LA though. My family live in San Marino smile

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 27-Sep-13 19:33:57

ethelb I'm truly impressed

Christmas pudding chocolates sound amazing, thank you rootypig .

WaitingForMe Fri 27-Sep-13 21:15:17

I've had a terrible year for hydrangeas. Luckily had an amazing harvest last autumn and newborn DS saw me not do much with them. They were pink and are now a lilac colour.

What do I do with them?

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Fri 27-Sep-13 21:29:52

Right, I bought a sewing machine yesterday so I can now start buying some lovely Christmassy fabric now. The plan is to make a stocking for DS and some decorations for the tree. I did have thoughts of also making an advent calendar but I know it's pure fantasy to think I can design and make one before December. At least with a stocking I get another 24 days poncing time. DH won't let me do any Christmads sewing until I have sewed the laundry basket liner thing that needs doing but is so not exciting compared to Cheistmas poncery.

And I just want to say, the Mary Berry's Christmas Chuntney IsaacCox linked to earlier is THE ONLY chutney I have made ever since I first tried it something like 10 years ago.

HazeltheMcWitch Fri 27-Sep-13 23:37:35

Yay, it has begun! I ponced in 2011, and had very good intentions of poncing in 2012 but it all went south. I got as far as buying that Sarah Raven book, but I think it terrified me into tinsel and bisto (almost).

May I just say, my favourite quote thus far as been

"...and I'm already planning my fudge schedule." Thanks, PaperPomPom!

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 27-Sep-13 23:46:20

waitingforme you could use them on a wreath, lilac hydrangea with cream faux roses and some silver would be lovely, pomegranates would tie in with those colours too

ethelb Fri 27-Sep-13 23:47:31

@ruby thankyou so much. Trying to figure out how to get to poncy yarn shop tomorrow. We are supposed to be celebrating dps 30th confused
Wrt the poster who was allowing their nine year old to decorate the tree with hm decorations.
Do it.
Our dm let us (me and dsisx2) do it one year. We mourned how bad the coloured lights and tinsel looked and here i am with my hm scandi-chic colour coordinated decorations, importing xmas eve pj fabric at unaffordable expense and suggesting people exacerbate the debt crisis further by introducing them to william sonoma. My dm is proud.
Do it. It will be the making of a poncetastic dd.

ethelb Fri 27-Sep-13 23:56:56

http://www.williams-sonoma.com/m/shop/christmas/christmas-bakeware/ linky

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 04:32:21

clinky link

www.williams-sonoma.com/m/shop/christmas/christmas-bakeware/

damn you ethelb, I want ALL of that, and I will have no cupboard space or money to make cookie dough or indeed feed my baby.

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 04:37:10

Edited actually I have a friend who will be in Palm Springs from mid December. I am totally taking a poncetastic drive out there. Will have several glasses of naice wine then hit up this poncey retail grotto, hard grin

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 04:39:05

Sorry for trillions of posts - am rereading thread for little nuggets I missed first time round eagerly devouring the ponce. ethelb would you share the provenance of this divine Christmas fabric? I am in the US and there have to be some compensations

BillyGoatintheBuff Sat 28-Sep-13 07:13:35

madebyjoel.com/2012/12/paper-city-nativity-scene.html

Hello, I just found this ^^ and thought I would share the link, I will try and print this for my LO's to colour in!!

kyrkkaffe.libris.se/?p=3581

Also this linky ^^ for colouring in.

I have made some orange decorations this weekend, I did not dry them long enough in the oven so they are still soft confused but I will try again, here is the website I used for instructions if anyone is interested.
www.cookquiltmakeandbake.com/2011/12/07/make-dried-orange-slice-ornaments/

Slippersocklover Sat 28-Sep-13 08:08:47

ethelb, I love Williams Sonoma! I went to New York Christmas shopping a couple of years ago and came home with half a suitcase of assorted sprinkles and Christmas decorations. I plan to spend a happy half hour this morning browsing the website with a coffee grin

TheYamiOfYawn Sat 28-Sep-13 08:25:13

Those links are great, BillyGoat. I just all of those 12 days of Christmas crafts and want to make the popcorn garlands and the stars on a string as well.as the orange slices.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-Sep-13 08:26:28

Olivia well done on the forward planning. And I like the sound of damsons in the freezer - very poncetastic.

If you will be 35 wks upduffed at Christmas then I predict that as twins usually put in a bit of an early appearance they will be Christmas babies and they should therefore be named Jesus and Mary.

Or Holly and Robin.

Or Noel and er...er......confused.....--Mr Blobby-- Angel, or Star.

Please do as I say.

You should also go out to your garage and start scattering lots of straw on the floor to make it more comfy for you to lay down when you are giving birth. Can you borrow a cow? for authenticity? If you don't have a manger use a wheelbarrow. It'll be fine.

Zeeky Sat 28-Sep-13 08:27:02

For those wanting to add glitter to jam etc, I've found the best to be the edible glitter stars (I got mine from Lakeland) as they show up better in the jar, then call it "Strawberry Glam" grin.

Re. Bacon Jam - IT IS AMAZING!! Haven't made it for a while, but DH is constantly nagging me too. It doesn't keep like normal jam/chutney, so need to keep it in the fridge and use fairly quickly. It is not really jam, more of tangy bacon relish, but is AMAZING with eggs!

FellatioNelson Sat 28-Sep-13 08:29:18

Right ladies, I mean business. I am making my cake today. I will I will I will. I have been to easily distracted this last week but I am on it like sonic now.

ethelb Sat 28-Sep-13 08:37:46

Just at fabric.com
I struggled to find good flannel over here. Its not something the Brits do really.
Glad you like the William Sonoma stuff. They also have fantastic thanksgiving bits and pieces but maybe this is the wrong thread.

ethelb Sat 28-Sep-13 08:41:56
Zeeky Sat 28-Sep-13 08:46:30

Just been looking at that Williams-Sonoma link - I want it all!!! The Americans sure do know how to do Christmas! I sooooooooo want to go to New York Christmas shopping one year, but will likely have to wait until the boys (6 and 3.5) are older, as they will just be a pain in the arse and spoil my idyllic dreams of strolling around New York swinging my shopping bags, hand in hand with DH, stopping to sip some eggnog!

MisselthwaiteManor Sat 28-Sep-13 09:14:44

I am thinking of making teeny tiny hampers as favours, like a bite size Christmas cake, tiny jar of jam like you get in cafes, can't think of anything else, any ideas? Is this naff?

BillyGoatintheBuff Sat 28-Sep-13 09:21:02

thegreendragonfly.wordpress.com/2012/12/23/reindeeer-cookies/

These look cute! (sorry for linking too much), I'm sure lots of people have great things pinned already smile

OctoberMoon Sat 28-Sep-13 09:51:59

Ok, so it's becoming apparant that lakeland is my poncetastic spirutual home. Armed with my cath kidston christmas organiser, i am off to get some hibiscus flowers in syrup for my christmas day cava.

I am investing in one christmas cook book, can anyone suggest the best one that you couldn't ponce without?

MisselthwaiteManor Sat 28-Sep-13 10:25:51

Those reindeer cookies look adorable!

ShouldHaveStayedHome Sat 28-Sep-13 10:56:56

I feel I must confess that last Christmas DD1 was due and therefore I thought I would sort everything during maternity leave ready for a lovely Christmas with a lovely Christmas baby... she arrived 3 weeks early so NO prior leave for me! Therefore no decorations or cakes or anything of the sort. I managed presents, although I had to ask people what they wanted or they got nothing (ponce blasphemy?). In my defence I was in that new baby haze of not knowing who I was, or where I was when dragged to at my mother's for Christmas day.

Previous years however have gone ahead with zero ponce. We hung tinsel as high as possible, maybe one string in each room, and no tree, due to the evil cheeky kitties. Also presents between DH and I didn't happen, just one item we wanted for the house between us.

So this year I would like to create as wonderful a Christmas for DD (and DH I suppose) as possible on the stingiest budget possible; but still no climbable tree allowed...

babycakemumma Sat 28-Sep-13 11:02:25

I may ponce an appropriate amount this year. :-D hohoho!

OwlBeThereForYou Sat 28-Sep-13 11:04:28

I missed the start?! How did this happen?? hmm I blame house hunting (which I think is almost done!) I am now going to enjoy reading all of this thread with a cuppa brew and plan the most poncetastic Christmas for our potential new house grin

Rubybrazilianwax Sat 28-Sep-13 12:17:22

I feel sooo poncetastic today. Have soup on, have been filling bags with pinecones and cinnamon oil to put in the hot press for a few weeks and now I'm going to pick my sloes after lunch.
Does anyone have a recipe for crap apple jelly? We've loads and they never get used unfortunately

HazeltheMcWitch Sat 28-Sep-13 12:25:11

Crap apple jelly? grin

Rubybrazilianwax Sat 28-Sep-13 13:27:50

Lmao! Crap apple jelly, it might take off you know

FellatioNelson Sat 28-Sep-13 14:02:11

I have a crap apple jelly recipe. grin

It a HFW one from his Preserves book. It's really long so I won't type it all out, but if you follow this basic link here he says you can use sloes, rowans, blackberries, elderberries, rosehips or whatever you have, in addition to the crab apples, or you can just use crab apples on their own for the total weight of fruit, and add cinnamon sticks and a few cloves for a classic spiced jelly.

FellatioNelson Sat 28-Sep-13 14:03:52

I can;t get crab apples in Qatar but I'd really like to make something so I think I'll look for a recipe that utiilises what is in abundance here - chillies, figs, Indian gooseberries, dates, pomegranates etc.

bymoonlight Sat 28-Sep-13 17:39:48

I am drying out the cucumbers mixture for piccalilli and soaking my fruit in brandy ready to make the cake tomorrow.

Am dreading lining the cake tin, always the worst bit of Christmas prep for me.

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 18:51:42

BillyGoat LOVE those reindeer cookies, keep posting! I am not an organised pinterest person. Though perhaps I will start...

ethel thanks for the fabric link, though I fear I have little use for flannel in southern California, [doublegrump]

Rubybrazilianwax Sat 28-Sep-13 18:54:36

Thanks fellatio that looks ideal. There are lots of those growing around me. So cross i didn't get my blackberries picked before the hedgerows were trimmed so I only have a small amount of those, not enough for jam but could definitely use them in that recipe.

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 18:54:43

oooh ethel is this the fabric you ordered? grin

Guitargirl Sat 28-Sep-13 19:29:23

This may aid everyone in their poncery...this link was on the bargains thread, I have tried and failed to resist adding to my pointless stash of Christmas ribbon - and am now £25 lighter blush

Anyway, there is a bargain section as well as a new Christmas section which has a 'Have a yummy Christmas' ribbon - cute for home-made foodie gifts!

Crafty ribbons

Guitargirl Sat 28-Sep-13 19:32:46

I am just getting into Pinterest and have a very basic question for those of you who are fans of the site. Ok, so when I type 'Christmas ideas' into the search box it comes up with the same photos most of the time, it looks as though there should be more pages or something but there's only one page on each search. Is it just that there are more pictures when you click on one which leads to more - is that how it works? <thick>

rootypig Sat 28-Sep-13 20:02:36

I was just scouting around for advent ideas and found this advent activity tree, which I really like, for those with younger DC. Also this Christmas Eve surprise box, from the same blog. DD was only 6 weeks last Christmas but this year I am thinking of the traditions that I want to create for her!

In the quest for Ponce-tastic-ism I have bought........

The Lakeland Limited silicone Fairy Cottage moulds (the small ones) so I can make chocolate cottages and gingerbread ones

The advent chocolate bars (for the DC advent tree)

Little candy canes for their sweet jars

I've got Nordic patterned sheets on order for DH and I smile

Editededition Sat 28-Sep-13 21:05:14

Great link Guitaregirl - thank you!
Have just far too much on poncey ribbons!!

Editededition Sat 28-Sep-13 21:22:13

or even ....spent far too much!!
grrrr

MrsOgg Sat 28-Sep-13 22:10:56

OK poncey people, I need Christmas decorating advice! Absolutely no offence to anyone, but I feel like the trend for words as decorations is a bit passé (you know, massive letters saying JOY around the place).

I really liked that trend, but I'm over it now. I have no idea what I like now though. What does everyone else like? I'm out of ideas, and I really want to make my house look pretty this year.

Guitargirl Sat 28-Sep-13 22:41:43

We have a ridiculous amount of clutter in our house which doesn't really lend the place to properly poncey decorations but I am going for lots of strategically placed lights this year (which am hoping will hide the dust!).

Candles MrsOgg

Scented candles (like Yankee) in jars or tealights
And the flameless ones for safety (there are some really good ones about that are wax. We got some from Costco last year with a remote control to on/off them )

And WRT words/letters decorations -
I've got some silver letters that spell our PEACE/ JOY/ NOEL and they are quite nice in a low key setting (usually on the bannister)

But I wouldn't have the mahoosive mantlepiece ones grin

Slippersocklover Sat 28-Sep-13 22:46:22

shouldhavestayedhome, do you have a bannister, mantel or shelving that can be adorned with a poncetastic garland to decorate instead of a tree? I've used a wired faux garland intertwined with warm white lights and hung with baubles and tree decorations in previous years - it's effective, inexpensive and evil kitty proof grin

Zeeky Sat 28-Sep-13 22:53:52

I made crab apple jelly this week. I just put the crab apples in my big jam pan, covered with water & boiled until they were all mush. Gave them a good squishing with the potato masher to make sure all the juice was out. Then ladle into a jelly bag to strain the juice. Leave overnight to drip. Measure the juice and add 1lb of sugar to every 1pt of juice (450g of sugar to 600ml of liquid). Proceed as for jam making. My crab apples were a deep red colour and made the most beautiful bright pink juice and jelly.

MrsOgg Sat 28-Sep-13 22:56:32

Hmm, fake candles could be fantastic, thanks for the tip!

What I'm really into is the really fancy and elaborate paper cut things, but they all seem to cost a lot of money to get hold of and I am no way going to try to make one! Like this one here: twoclevermoms.com/love-to-try-scherenschnitte/
(scroll down a little bit to get to the tree, it's amazing!)

Zeeky Sat 28-Sep-13 23:03:25

Mrs Ogg that is indeed beautiful. I love making paper snowflakes and try to make them ever more intricate, but that is something else!

leesmum Sun 29-Sep-13 09:11:48

Can I join in? Mrs Ogg those paper cuttings are brill I could just about do a dodgy snowflake!

WaitingForMe Sun 29-Sep-13 09:42:42

Thanks for the wreath idea Ruby! Cream roses and pomegranate with silver ribbon is achingly poncy!

My plans now include a fancy breakfast (only got stepkids until lunchtime) featuring eggs, homemade bread and bacon jam then maybe some rocky road which I'll get the boys to make and wrap as their gifts to people.

ringaringarosy Sun 29-Sep-13 10:54:15

So does poncetastic mean homemade?

ringaringarosy Sun 29-Sep-13 10:55:16

rocky road as a present is a good idea,i might get the kids involved in that,also i saw nigella make some honeycomb o tv a while ago,that would make a nice gift too.

What would you wrap it in and how long would it keep for?

Editededition Sun 29-Sep-13 10:57:27

So does poncetastic mean homemade?
....with attitude!!!
And style.
And some level of overkill enthusiasm.
grin

WaitingForMe Sun 29-Sep-13 12:44:55

I buy cellophane bags from Amazon ringaringarosy. I use a freezer tie or elastic band to make a tight seal and then cover with a bit of ribbon or use twine and a luggage tag.

Honeycombe sounds lush but is possibly the worst thing to make with children shock

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 29-Sep-13 13:09:09

Have you seen pearl and earl they do nice paper decorations mrsogg
Also I made these snowflakes last year and they looked amazing hanging in my windows. Thats the youtube tutorial I used. It looks more complicated than what it is, trust me its worth persevering as they are quite easy. I still have mine hanging in the attic so hope they have survived to use this year!

ringaringarosy Sun 29-Sep-13 16:01:59

Why waitingforme?MIne are still all under 6 so i probably wouldntlet them near the hob,just do the smashing up bit at the end!

WaitingForMe Sun 29-Sep-13 16:35:53

Because it's boiling sugar. I made peppermint creams with DSSs when they were 3 and 6 as they are safe for little hands to cut out. With Rocky Roads there is a but of smashing them mixing and pressing.

Honeycomb needs breaking up lightly. It'd be dust in seconds. And TBH I wouldn't want the kids in the kitchen when I was handling boiling sugar. (I may just have violent/careless DSSs)

FellatioNelson Sun 29-Sep-13 17:06:47

I agree with you MrsOgg. It was great while it lasted but it's had its day.

What can we think of next? Since I moved to the Middle East I don't have access to any decent style and interiors magazines any more, so I am ashamed to say that I may be a bit behind the times on Poncetastic terms, but don't tell, or they'll take my crown away. sad I need to get up to speed with what is the new/next big thing, and pronto.

ringaringarosy Sun 29-Sep-13 17:37:36

Nigella gave it a right bashing in with a big hammer!I might do it but just with one child,it would definitely be dust in seconds with all 3 of them having a go.

ChocolateHelps Sun 29-Sep-13 17:50:25

Ooh ready to ponce. Love a bit of crafting and have lots of foam wreath forms (don't ask) but have never done the homemade Xmas cake before. Chocolate nigella one sounds perfect

TheYamiOfYawn Sun 29-Sep-13 17:51:10

I think that the Next Big Thing will be a mid-century modern austerity Christmas. Not Coca-Cola kitsch American 1950s, but a more austere version. So coloured glasses, natural-coloured wood, tank-tops, paper chains, starburst shapes, modern antiques, trendy sprouts, more Scandi love. I reckon tinsel might make a comeback, but not quite yet.

Chubfuddler Sun 29-Sep-13 17:57:38

I'm going Nordic for this year. They've got some gorgeous red and white tea towels in sainsburys, beginning of the Christmas range coming in. I bought four to be our Christmas Day napkins.

I've got an empty fire place so I'm going to fill it with hurricane lamps and other random containers with pillar candles. My tree decorations are all red and white and quite Scandi ikea anyway so will go nicely I think

If I was being properly poncetastic I would have sewn them myself I suppose.

Chubfuddler Sun 29-Sep-13 18:01:11

Scrubbed pine top table, so I'm not going to bother with a tablecloth. It's only a source of stress with young children anyway, they either spill stuff on it as soon as glance at it or half pull it off getting to their places. I've got three little bucket things on a tray, hard to describe but whst you grow windowsill herbs in. Currently empty so center piece for the table will be those with some narcissi bulbs and tea lights.

FellatioNelson Sun 29-Sep-13 18:02:53

Yes! Why didn't I think of that? <slaps head>

Of course - it's the natural progession from the bunting and the crochet and the folksy retro thing. Forties, fifties...that means I might have to allow tinsel back into the fold in an uber-ironic way.

My GPs had the most beautiful paper decorations from the 50's, and a teeny tiny fake tree about two feet tall, and some lovely coloured lights shaped like little flower buds. My Dsis still has them all.

Paper chains are the way forward.

Trigglesx Sun 29-Sep-13 18:28:59

Well, if tinsel and paper chains are back in, I'm thinking I could do this. grin Although I tried paper chains with the DCs last year and ended up doing them myself. hmm

BellaOfTheBalls Sun 29-Sep-13 19:13:41

editededition my Christmas cake is in the oven! Then entire house smells divine & the mixture tasted lovely - could really taste the brandy and the lemon. I did my usual thing on grease proof paper well above the level of the tin to prevent top burning. However I seem to have made enough for 2 cakes, my DF will be pleased!

We do special breakfast on Christmas morning. English muffins, scrambled eggs and Waitrose treacle bacon.

It was a one off that dd requested the next year and it's since become a tradition.

I love it as it's a little bit of calm in a pretty manic day.

My cake always catches a bit. I do the tall sided baking parchment but it's not enough. Any other tips? Mind you, I have a new oven this year so that's a whole different world of issues to deal with.

bymoonlight Sun 29-Sep-13 20:11:05

I will be checking my cake in 15 mins. It will have been in for 3hrs. Last year I listened to Delia and left it for four hours and it burned.

I am scared.

Good luck bymoonlight, it's always a hair raising moment.

bymoonlight Sun 29-Sep-13 20:28:16

Thanks Free.

Its not burnt but the sides may be catching. It needs at least another half hour though. The top wasn't springing back.

WaitingForMe Sun 29-Sep-13 20:57:38

I'm doing Nigella's Black Cake. Buying the fruit and booze tomorrow (needs two weeks soaking). Might have to make a separate wee pot of it as otherwise I'll be sneaking tastes and the weight will be all wrong blush

bymoonlight Sun 29-Sep-13 21:02:57

I'm pg and the term 'wee pot' has completely different connotations to me atm, I had to read it twice grin

My cake is springing and isn't burnt - yay! and phew!

AnneEyhtMeyer Sun 29-Sep-13 21:19:53

Can I slip quietly in and maybe join you? Not sure I live up to Poncetastic expectations though.

I'm going to make a Christmas cake this year for the first time in years - using my Granny's recipe, and the fruit has been soaking since Friday. Plan to make the cake tomorrow or Tuesday.

I made mincemeat for the first time last year, and I still have some jars of it left, so will be using that this year to make my pies.

I made small Christmas stockings for everyone a couple of years ago, and we use these as table stockings each year - keeps people occupied between courses and I try to include things to get people talking - quizzes, jokes etc. They are red felt, edged with blanket stitch and with a green Christmas tree blanket-stitched on the front. I also cross-stitched name labels for them.

Have had my tree in the conservatory for the last few years as I was scared my DD would pull it over, but I think I'm going to risk putting it in the sitting room this year to make it feel more Christmassy. I already go to town on the fireplace, with a garland, lights, wooden advent calendars and candles, so with the tree alongside it should make the whole room feel very festive. I love sitting with just the fairy lights on with carols playing in the background.

Editededition Sun 29-Sep-13 21:26:48

Yay, Bella!
The smell is so amazing isn't it.

Don't worry if the currants standing proud of the surface get a bit blackened ...it always happens and makes absolute zero difference to the taste of the cake :-)

Editededition Sun 29-Sep-13 21:34:41

Just looking at times ...I suspect it may be out of the oven already!!

MrsOgg Sun 29-Sep-13 21:45:37

I think you're all right - austere 40s and 50s Scandi stuff is the next big thing. Lucky for me, as lots of the furniture in my house is from the charity shop and loosely that era!

I love the snowflake video Ruby, cheers for that I'm definitely going to give those a go.

I spent ages and ages last night looking at remote control LED candles on Amazon. There is too much choice. If anyone wants to recommend a certain brand I'd be grateful!

AnneEyhtMeyer Sun 29-Sep-13 21:51:42

I got my remote-controlled candles from Costco last week. There are 6 for about £23. They look the same as these ones from Lakeland Ltd.

MrsOgg Sun 29-Sep-13 21:55:24

Ooh just had a look at the pearl and earl website, have seen quite a few things I'm going to buy one day when I've been paid! I especially like the red and white striped butchers' twine, which I was after last year and couldn't get hold of, and the wide 'no peeking' giftwrap tape, that's pretty cool.

I really like their tissue paper snowflakes as well. Thanks for linking to it!

MrsOgg Sun 29-Sep-13 22:07:57

Ooh, 6 for £23 seems pretty good, thanks Anne!

AnneEyhtMeyer Sun 29-Sep-13 22:24:42

Just found the receipt MrsOgg and they were £19.99 + VAT, so £24.

MrsOgg Sun 29-Sep-13 22:29:40

Ok one more thing, and then I promise I'll stop posting on this thread this evening.

Is anyone else making a felt advent calendar this year? I just had a look at felt advent calendars on pinterest and they are all AMAZING and I want to make about 6 now and can't decide which style to go for. I am getting over-excited over here.

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Sun 29-Sep-13 23:16:33

Just popping in to be appreciative. I can't get to the heights of poncery but I've loved this thread the last few years. I have now (yaaaaay!) moved out of a small, damp, mouldy-walled, un-heated 1970s flat and have an Actual House. Possibly the smallest house in the world, but, a house! With actual fireplaces and mantels!

So, I am going to do a wee bit of poncing.

I have concentrated on the important stuff (none of which I can drink), and have lovely kilner jars on the shelf in the kitchen with:

- blackcurrants in white rum
- damsons in gin
- spiced calvados (for quick mulled drinks - you just heat up good apple juice and put a shot of the calvados in)
- cardamom gin
- greengages in white rum
- white peaches in brandy
- ginger and brown sugar brandy
- un-gin (gin aromatics in white rum for my mum who's allergic to one of the components of ordinary gin)

I have also just bought some Winter tealights from the White Company because a certain MNer (looks round guilt-trippingly) was talking about Christmas on facebook and got me all in the mood for it.

I am getting a bit bored with the whole Scandi style stuff (and it doesn't work in my house, more to the point), but, ruby, when you say the snowflakes are easy, do you mean, for a total idiot with two thumbs? Cos I quite fancy trying.

Right: that's my place-marking good-intentions post! smile

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Sun 29-Sep-13 23:23:22

Btw, I have linked to these dresses before on MN so excuse me if I sound like they're paying me (they're not, I just lust after everything they make) ... but how awesome would this be for a Christmas dress? (Deranged 'I hear voices' pose optional).

www.limb-clothing.com/prod2.cfm?product=85966

rootypig Mon 30-Sep-13 03:51:40

I loooooove that! It is totally deranged! I want a holly version.

MrsHoratioNelson Mon 30-Sep-13 04:45:01

Ooh LRD any chance you could post the spiced calvados recipe please?

girlywhirly Mon 30-Sep-13 08:13:59

Freebuttonbee, when I did domestic science at school in the 1970's, we used to wrap a thick layer of folded newspaper around our Christmas cake tin, secured by tying with string, and high enough to be taller than the tin itself. That was enough to stop the cake sides scorching. There was a single layer of greaseproof paper lining the insides of the tin, with a double layer on the base.

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Mon 30-Sep-13 12:31:22

Of course! But it is really easy. Calvados isn't that cheap, but I bought the cheapest one in Tesco.

- Half a litre of calvados.
- I vanilla pod, scored with a knife
- cinnamon stick
- small piece of root ginger (about 1cm square)
- 1 cardamom pod
- about 5 eating apples (I had discoveries as they were in season but I think cox is better), quartered and cored.

Bung it all in a kilner jar and make sure the apple quarters stay under the liquid.

It is really just the spices I use to make mulled cider (which my mate loves), so I am pretty sure you could use whatever blend of spices you liked. Bear in mind both cardamom and vanilla let out quite a strong flavour quite fast. The apples just give it a slightly fresher taste.

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Mon 30-Sep-13 12:32:07

Oh, and I didn't add sugar because it was quite sweet calvados, but if you had a sweet tooth or fancied it, I have made it before with dark brown sugar in and that was very good.

MooseyMoo Mon 30-Sep-13 13:23:58

Can I join you? I love reading this thread.

We normally have a wreath from the local garden centre which we hang on the hanging basket bracket by front door. This year, I've bought the lovely willow wreath linked to earlier in the thread and now looking for ideas how to hang and decorate it. Thinking fairy lights and sprigs of holly.

My mincemeat is currently cooking in the oven (Delia's Christmas mincemeat) and I have bought some lovely ribbon for decorating the presents for adults.

Guitargirl Mon 30-Sep-13 14:47:07

I don't think this is really very poncey but I went to M&M World during my lunchbreak today to get red and green M&Ms to layer with other sweets into Ikea jars for presents for children in the family. Now I just have to keep my mitts off them until December!

M&M world?! How have I not heard of this before? shock

Does anyone else feel like there is not enough time already? I am feeling vaguely overwhelmed. Perhaps I'll feel more in control when I've got a planner. hmm

Guitargirl Mon 30-Sep-13 20:13:50

Yes, it's a 4-storey (they really milk it grin) shop in Leicester Square. I think it's only been open for about a year or so(?). A giant walking yellow M&M shook my hand blush.

<probably doesn't fit in with the theme of the poncey thread>

<slinks off to pinch an M&M>

fuzzpig Mon 30-Sep-13 21:36:08

I really want to go to the m&m store. My friends had personalised ones as wedding favours smile

rootypig Mon 30-Sep-13 22:26:11

Guitargirl I admire your self control. I could never ever have an M&M intended for another person in the house. Several large bags usually don't see the next day blush

BillyGoatintheBuff Tue 01-Oct-13 02:18:59
BillyGoatintheBuff Tue 01-Oct-13 02:22:19

I have found lovely red and white twine on ebay, I am watching it and will get some when we're paid smile

Someone upthread was asking about pinterest, I love it. I google things I want to find and try and find a blog that has hand made chrimbo stuff on it (for example) then pin it. I have a bookmarked 'pin it' thingy and just click that and it gets pinned. I hope that makes a little bit of sense. Or else google something ie homemade advent calendars and then select images and look and see if there is anything you like and click on it and then pin it smile

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 06:09:54

Thanks LRD. Even in my very advanced state of pregnancy I think I can manage that! Is it OK to just leave it til Christmas or would you drain it to stop the spices overpowering?

Billy I had some last year and it looked good, but its quite slippery so it's difficult to get it really taught. I wrapped my pressies in brown paper and it might be easier to wet the twine a bit to give it a bit of grip and make sure it stays nice and tight.

Zeeky Tue 01-Oct-13 08:33:57

Mrs Ogg striped bakers twine is way cheaper on eBay - £4.95 for 100m instead of £12.50 at Pearl & Earl shock

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Tue 01-Oct-13 08:50:11

Oh, I'm only sorry you won't get to drink it then! (But congratulations! smile).

I think last time I just got DH to taste it every few weeks, and it never got too spicy. But I made it deliberately to use as a base for mulled drinks, so if you wanted it to be something you could drink on its own, you probably could drain it after six weeks or so. Mine's been made for about three now, and you can definitely taste the vanilla and cinnamon already.

Sorry, not very helpful. blush

moosey - where do you buy ribbon? I really fancy the boxes Cox and Cox do because I'm a sucker for everything on their site, but they're quite expensive. Paperchase seems to have really crap colours at the moment.

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 09:02:21

Thanks LRD - I am 39+5 so unless "overdue" becomes something of an understatement I hope very much that come christmas I will be in the market for spiced calvados smile

This time last year I made sloe gin and damson gin and it was ready about two weeks before I fell pregnant unexpectedly quickly angry

I may do a lot of expressing and making up for lost time this Christmas grin

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Tue 01-Oct-13 09:15:48

grin

Sounds good!

I am in awe of Christmas poncery in late pregnancy, btw.

I'm interested in making Sloe Gin but can someone tell me if Sloes and Damsons are the same thing?

If not, how can you tell the difference?

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 10:46:18

TheOne Damsons are bigger. Sloes are about the size of a large blueberry, damsons are about the size of a gooseberry. If you're picking them yourself, sloes are on a thorny bush, damsons grow on a plum-type tree.

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 10:48:14

And LRD its all in my head so far grin but I will pick up some Calvados and TheOne has reminded me to check the greengrocers for damsons. That's the sort of gentle poncery I can cope with smile

Ah thanks MrsH. We have Damsons then.

somanymiles Tue 01-Oct-13 12:33:49

I have committed myself to a Poncetastic Christmas for the first time. For the first time in 6 years all my siblings will be together for Christmas. I am already so bloody excited I can hardly contain myself although of course it will all end in boozy tears and someone storming out. However, I shall not let reality get in the way.

I have made a start by making some apple chutney. I also have two handmade advent calendars for my oldest children and this is the year my 2 year old will get one of his own. I have made a shopping list for homemade Christmas cake, and then plan to follow it with homemade Christmas pussing. Sadly, I fear I may have missed blackberry season as blackberry vodka sounds very delicious. I will take a peek in Tesco this week to see if they have any late blackberries. If only I had thought of it sooner in the year I could have had damsons in rum as we have a fantastic tree in the garden that produces loads.

I will be following the thread closely to pick up ideas!

somanymiles Tue 01-Oct-13 12:43:47

oops, meant pudding of course. "Pussing" does not sound very nice.

somanymiles Tue 01-Oct-13 12:48:52

MrsOgg I have made two felt advent calendars and I am making another one this year. One tip I will give you is to make the pockets big enough so you can fit in a wide range of sweets or treats. So many of my pockets are really tiny and can only fit a candy cane or similar, which makes it a bit tricky filling them all with interesting things.

MooseyMoo Tue 01-Oct-13 12:52:43

LRD ribbons were from Crafty Ribbon. I bought x6 Scrap bags (buy 5 get 6th free) and x3 ribbon packs (3 for 2)

My order arrived today and itching to open it but my DD has decided to not to have a nap today. I'm planning of giving her one of the scrap bags for Christmas. And have a feeling it will be her favourite present! Will buy her a little see through storage box for them too.

MooseyMoo Tue 01-Oct-13 13:00:03

I've bought a Rusty Bucket Advent Calendar and will fill it with sweets, perfume and aftershave samples (I've been sending off for free ones). On 1 Dec I've got an Enchanted Magic Door for DD (who's 3.5) which I'll set up when she's asleep. If she's been good all week she'll get a little present from the fairy who lives through the door.

Zeeky Tue 01-Oct-13 13:01:28

Somanymiles there should still be a few blackberries around on the hedgerows, and supermarkets definitely have them.

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 14:58:17

Right, I have stolen LRD's recipe for an anniversary present for DH - it's our 4th anniversary shortly after this baby arrives and 4th is fruit and flowers hmm. I couldn't get any cheap calvados so I've got brandy instead and I'm sure that will be fine!

Also visited a farm shop I've been meaning to try and they had damsons, so another stock of damson gin will be made.

I picked up a posh bottle for the brandy in Dunelm Mill and among all the tat they had one or two nice rustic scandi decs - wooden reindeers and the like and I picked up a red felt star garland.

can you tell I'm twiddling my thumbs waiting for this baby

Zeeky Tue 01-Oct-13 15:01:46

www.coxandcox.co.uk/decorative-home/christmas-2013/crystal-light-garland

Cox & Cox have got their Christmas stuff out. Very poncetastic! Love those crystal lights I've linked to. I think they would look mighty fine on my new mantel that is being install this week!

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Tue 01-Oct-13 15:02:35

Thanks for the recommendation moosey!

MrsH - yep, bet brandy would be nice.

I'm off to the Dunelm Mill website - I knew there was somewhere I'd been forgetting to browse.

GlitterKitty Tue 01-Oct-13 17:11:40

Can we talk about crackers?

I am flummoxed. They are all so expensive and yet rubbish.

Do I have to make my own? Or has anyone seen any nice poncey ones?

I looked at Fortnum & Mason even, just to do <hollow laugh> at how some rich buggers must do Christmas... stares at crackers like Tiny Tim

leesmum Tue 01-Oct-13 17:16:10

I am making my own crackers this year, keep buying little things when I see them, got a "special cracker bag" at the bottom of my wardrobe!

GlitterKitty Tue 01-Oct-13 17:32:57

What kind of things, leesmum? <nosey>

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 17:35:00

Glitter they're not massively difficult, tbh. You can get kits off tinternet. What about alcohol miniatures or just some nice chocs wrapped in a little bit of cellophane? Nail polish/lipsticks for ladies would fit as well.

IsaacCox Tue 01-Oct-13 17:48:15

Glitter, I made crackers for my December wedding the other year. I got kits from Hobbycraft (silver glitter ones) filled them with a joke, a fact card, a glow stick (for the reception) small tube of bubbles and a typical cracker hat (I think that's it, can't remember!) They went down a storm. I'm not sure when or if they already have the kits in store but it's worth a look to see if there's any you like the look of. I'm pretty sure they may have been on 3 for 2 or some other offer.

leesmum Tue 01-Oct-13 18:08:43

Ladies crackers...mini lip gloss, sparkly stud ear rings, chocolates.

Men's crackers, mini fcuk aftershave, scratchcard, chic liquers.

Kids crackers, tattoos, angrybirds tat, sweets, chic coins

leesmum Tue 01-Oct-13 18:09:42

Choc liquers not chic!!

IreneR Tue 01-Oct-13 18:31:28

Hooray -- another year of poncetastic preparations!

I absolutely loved this, upthread: "eagerly devouring the ponce." That's me, too -- eagerly devouring the ponce as I read through this thread, and click on each and every link.

I've never looked at notonthehighstreet until today, and I have to ask: how many families have printed Christmas menu cards?! Really, I need to know.

I'm thinking of making a garland for the banister out of book pages (just like a very ponce-y woman I knew did). Passé? Aside from any style violations, I'm having trouble finding one to copy because A) nothing I have found by googling looks as full and rounded as hers, and B) they do seem to be more for Halloween, and I'm not sure how to make them Christmassy rather than spooky. I have a pretty big banister for the first time ever, and I couldn't find or buy enough greenery to make it look appropriately abundant.

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 18:55:11

Oh goodness, I can't resist any longer! If I start now I reckon it may be possible to ponce without breaking down? Hmmm, what poncetasticness can I offer? As a part Dane I know how Christmas is done properly. For starters, danish Christmas biscuits are the bees knees, so I will have a sizeable stash unbaked in my freezer ready to whip out and cook in 10 minutes for cinnamony kitchen wonderfulness. I am doing a mega cook this weekend, Mary Berry's Victorian Christmas cake, Delia's mincemeat and Christmas pud. English side of family well catered for too! Big respect to all you who also know how these things are done, I salute you.

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 18:57:48

Irene, how about a Christmas sheet music garland? How cute would that be (although distinctly impractical probably!)

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 18:59:14

Leesmum, can I have a chic liquer?

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 18:59:21

Leesmum, can I have a chic liquer?

AnneEyhtMeyer Tue 01-Oct-13 19:25:35

My cake is in the oven! I have everything crossed for it to turn out well.

NannyPlumForPM Tue 01-Oct-13 19:28:30

I have a confession fellow poncers.... Last year I used (whisper it) aunt Bessie's gravy. Mine was SO atrocious. I am ashamed, and I wondered if I should be shunned and ostracised from poncery altogether... OR if I make a real effort this year if I can be allowed to ponce once more.

does not admit that ruined gravy was down to some beautiful skittle vodka

TheYamiOfYawn Tue 01-Oct-13 19:30:51

Handful, could you share your biscuit recipe, please?

TheYamiOfYawn Tue 01-Oct-13 19:31:56

Sorry for mangling your name. I was autocorrected.

Trigglesx Tue 01-Oct-13 19:33:53

£50 for crackers? eeeeek... ok, we tend to go cheap with the crackers and be very non-ponce - mainly because I hate the cheap little toys all over and am not interested in paying a fortune for the more expensive ones. We buy very inexpensive ones that don't have a toy.

Guitargirl Tue 01-Oct-13 19:39:30

The ribbons I ordered from Crafty Ribbons also arrived today. Very exciting. I think I may have got a bit carried away and probably have enough for the next five Christmases blush.

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 20:13:54

Yami, tomorrow when the littlest one goes down for his nap, I will share two Danish biscuit recipes. The world needs more cinnamon.

I was going to ask for the biscuit recipe too. Thank you HandsFull.

I bought some lovely silver and black ribbon today from B&M Bargins. I use black and silver as my main colours every year and choose a different accent colour. This year is red and last year was blue.

Zeeky Tue 01-Oct-13 20:53:54

Oooooo I lurve cinnamon! I would love the recipe too please.

MrsHoratioNelson Tue 01-Oct-13 20:55:06

Ugh Handsful the one thing the world does not need is more cinnamon hmm

Trigglesx Tue 01-Oct-13 20:56:46

oh no, cinnamon is lovely. I cannot wait to get out my cinnamon scented candles. smile

Handsfullandlovingit Tue 01-Oct-13 21:14:30

I'm just grateful I do like cinnamon, its a bit like marmite isn't it? Provided it is done carefully, you won't find a warmer fuzzier spice! The Danes have a word, hugly, which means just that, cosy, snugglybuggly. Cinnamon is hugly. Gavel.

Zeeky Tue 01-Oct-13 21:22:14

A bit of a confession here....[whispers] I have never made my own mincemeat before and actually hate Christmas pudding and Christmas cake!

There, it's out in the open now! But I do plan to make some mincemeat this year. I was wondering what the best recipe is? I don't like boozy mincemeat though. Should I use Delia or Mary Berry or I found this one from Cherry Menlove. Any advice from seasoned mincemeat makers?

leesmum Tue 01-Oct-13 21:23:18

Handsfull ill have you know we're very ponceychic in our gaff.....help yourself to a chic choccie smile

hanbee Tue 01-Oct-13 21:36:25

Hello, lurked last year and only managed one post to share my green tomato chutney. Love a poncey Christmas but never have enough time to do everything. This year however we already have a stack of pickles and jams made and I'm massively excited to see the pickled cucumber recipe, thanks byMoonlight; we have a massive load of them from our allotment and it'll save them going soft in a box!

Hope to join in a bit more this year, but as it's taken me all evening to read all your posts I expect I'll be mostly reading and lurking again!

ethelb Tue 01-Oct-13 22:52:51

@zeeky delia's is crap. Mary Berry does good Xmas stuff generally (her santa claus cake is great) so try hers.

Nigel Slater's Christmas pudding goes down well with people who 'don't like Chrismas pudding'. www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/christmaspudding_71054

Just had a look at the Poncetastic board on Pinterest.

I love, love the Jack Skellington decoration! It's our Christmas Eve film. I will be making a couple of those. smile

TheYamiOfYawn Tue 01-Oct-13 23:05:50

This isn't Christmas poncery, but could easily be adapted for Christmas. I have made 2 batches of playdough, one with a mixture of cinnamon and mixed spice and one with orange flavouring and food colouring. They smell lovely and will work well together even when mixed.

I am thinking of maybe making red cinnamon and white mint. Or green apple. You could end up with mincemeat flavour.

Still looking for a Christmas Organiser if anybody has any links or suggestions? grin

I'm a bit late with my christmas cakes this year but I think it's because I really want to try a new recipe. They have been a tad dry over the last couple of years - any tried and tested yummy fruit cake recipes?

I've also realised that I can no longer suffer in silence, trying to read this thread has made me realise I MUST go and get glasses this week. hmm

smile

IsaacCox Wed 02-Oct-13 06:08:59

TheYami that play dough sounds immense! How do you make it please? thanks

MooseyMoo Wed 02-Oct-13 06:33:35

zeeky I love Delia's mincemeat recipe. You put brandy in at the end so you can just miss that step out. I prefer oven cooking the mince meat at a low temperature. When finished there is a lot of fat but that's to coat everything.

I don't like Christmas pudding or marzipan but I do like a mince pie with brandy butter smile

I've got a lovely pastry recipe for mince pies too (with ground almonds and orange zest).

Can I ponce?

We're having dinner out in a posh restaurant down the road from us so I thought I'd concentrate on decoration booze and the Boxing Day buffet for the fam.

That Calvados looks lovely, I'm definitely getting in on that. I have a few Kilmer type glass bottles that would look nice all pounced up any ideas what I can fill them with?

Also, stupid question alert! With Delia's mincemeat do I use beef suet?

MooseyMoo Wed 02-Oct-13 06:52:20

titsalina Yes, beef suet is what I use. If cooking for vegetarians, you can use veg suet.

Huzzah! I have a pallet load of masonry jars in my loft (don't ask) I shall get DP to fetch them tonight and start the Christmas prep.

I also need a no fail pickled onion recipe and one for Gherkins, I chuffing love gherkins.

I've ordered my Christmas planner and I have the go ahead to,order £50 worth of stuff at Lakeland to get free wine, I just don't know what to order...

hanbee Wed 02-Oct-13 08:09:30

Titsalina someone added a gherkin recipe on page one of tge thread, I've not tried it but it looks yum.

IsaacCox Wed 02-Oct-13 08:18:09

Can I ask a stupid question please? I've got 3 Christmas cakes worth of fruit soaking in brandy in covered bowls (one of them is soaking in a little brandy but then I ran out and put in brewed tea- I hope this'll taste ok- the recipe did say you could use tea for it. It's going to be turned into those Christmas cake balls covered in chocolate up thread).

I was going to make them into cakes yesterday but I've got a horrid cold and am laid up on the sofa with little energy enough to MN though How long will they be ok for soaking up the alcohol/tea? Thanks thanks

My poncing question of the day - I've got my slows and I want to start my gin off today, but can someone tell me how to clean the needle for pricking? Other than washing it, obviously, but do I need to sterilize it or something?

Sloes, obviously, stupid autocorrect making me look illiterate!

MrsHoratioNelson Wed 02-Oct-13 09:22:21

At I never bother - the sloes are going in alcohol after all - but you could stick it in a cork and heat it with a flame (gas cooker or match) or let it sit in some Milton or something

Zeeky you're not the only one - it's perfectly possible to be poncetastic without liking mincemeat, cake or even pudding. I do make my own pudding but I never make mincemeat and not even DH likes christmas cake much except the marzipan and icing so my mum always does that. Oddly, I do Lebkuchen, those German biscuits but we always had those as kids so maybe that's it.

AnneEyhtMeyer Wed 02-Oct-13 09:48:26

Isaac I soaked my fruit for 5 days. I don't think it matters how long you soak it.

Thank you MrsHoratio

IsaacCox Wed 02-Oct-13 10:17:02

Brilliant, thanks Anne smile

CatAmongThePigeons Wed 02-Oct-13 11:17:33

<re marking place> as I've not been poncetastic enough blush Although I have started learning knitting and crochet (former is a lot neater than latter) so are there any simple but poncy crafts I could make bearing in mind I'm confused with technical terms?

I need to sort out my HM mincemeat and Christmas cake. We have some lovely recipes from DHs mother so they are our family traditions and very very lovely.

I will be making mincemeat cake type bars for DHs work the tour before Christmas so I will have to make a lot of it!

A few more questions (please, bare with me, I didn't ponce last year as I had a baby a few days old and bad pnd)

Gherkins/cucumbers, can I use regular cucumbers? I haven't a clue where to get small ones from..

Also, I have many Kilner type bottles, can anyone give me some easy alcohol recipes for them? I'll do one with the Calvados mix in but I have so many that I'd like to fill.

How does sloe gone work?

Also rum, I'd love a spiced rum recipe of some kind.

marssparklesdownonme Wed 02-Oct-13 13:06:52

Now making my Mary Berry Christmas Chutney. The kitchen smells lovely.
Planted up some more bulbs yesterday for flower arrangements. I found some lovely scandi style ribbons in The Range very cheaply and a large nordic patterned advent candle in Sainsburys. Feel like I've finally made a start.My library book "Handmade Scandinavian Christmas" by Hege Barnholt has arrived- its gorgeous.

I do a traffic light chilli jam selection, I use Nigella's chilli jam and then make it in green and orange as well as the traditional red. My sister goes nuts for a chilli jam, she'd be devastated if I didn't give her some with her pressies grin

Titsalina I am using this recipe for sloe gin , except I'm freezing the sloes, then using them from frozen without pricking (my neighbour tells me the alcohol will split the frozen berries and save me time).

I am also making rhubarb vodka and blackberry brandy and I'd like to have a go at some schnapps .

Slippersocklover Wed 02-Oct-13 16:29:56

handsfull, hugly is my new favourite word, I'm adopting it into regular use, thanks! grin

MrsHoratio, do you have a lebkuchen recipe you'd reccomend? I love them, I really want to try making them!

How do we feel about gingerbread houses, are they poncetastic? Are there any rules about what can and cannot be used on a gingerbread house to make it poncey?

rootypig Wed 02-Oct-13 18:01:03

TheYami yes playdough recipe please!

TheYamiOfYawn Wed 02-Oct-13 18:08:36

Playdough recipe (with no formatting as I am on my phone supervising 2 children in the bath).

2 cups plain flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tbsp cream of tartar
2 tbsp mixed spice
2tbsp vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups of just-boiled water.

Mix the dry ingredients.
Add the oil

Add the water and mix.

Knead until it feels like playdough (about a minute).

For the orange one, I added food colouring with the water, and added a couple of spoonfuls of orange flavouring at the kneading stage.

IsaacCox Wed 02-Oct-13 18:12:51

Brilliant, thank you thanks

TheYamiOfYawn Wed 02-Oct-13 18:43:44

Also, there is no spice in the orange one.

HesMyLobster Wed 02-Oct-13 20:10:40

Wow! Wow! Wow!
Where has this thread been all my life?
I ADORE Christmas - the more poncetastic the better - but my friends and fam Just.Dont.Get. me It. (esp my MIL. She tuts at my OTTness every time she visits during December)
FINALLY I have fellow-poncers to get excited about wreaths and swags and candles and crackers with!
Oh My!!
How has nobody ever introduced me to Williams Sonoma before? LOVE!

I shall be back - off to re-read from beginning!

You guys are ace grin

grin at HesMyLobster.

Isaac I've just been reading your posts on Reastie's bargin thread. Between that thread and this one, can I come to yours for Christmas?
Pleeeeeaaaaase!!!!!

MrsHoratioNelson Wed 02-Oct-13 20:53:44

Especially for you Slipper and since you asked so nicely, here is my recipe for Lebkuchen:

Buy them from Aldi Sainsburys.

blush

Barbeasty Wed 02-Oct-13 21:26:54

John Lewis do fill-your-own crackers normally in a couple of designs.

I've made my mincemeat with the apple and whisky recipe linked to the other day.

hanbee Wed 02-Oct-13 21:50:27

we have home made fill your own crackers. Dead easy to make: toilet roll tube cover in Christnassy fabric (just glue the fabric to the tube. Make a small in centre of the tube and add a small prettifier (we have plastic flowers or holly but you could go poncier). Attach colour co ordinated net to ends of each tube and tidy the join by glueing over a strip of co-ordinating Christmassy ribbon. Job done. Ours have lasted about 20 years so far!

Editededition Wed 02-Oct-13 22:16:27

Titsalina .... I use a "no-fail" pickled onion recipe. It is "no fail", because there is so little to do grin .........

Peel as many pickling onions as you want.
Put into a bowl. Dissolve 2oz table salt in a pint of water (scale up as needed) and pour over the onions, until covered. Weight down with a small plate. Leave for 48 hours.
Drain onions, and dry thoroughly.
Put into a Kilner jar and cover with Sarsons white pickling vinegar (the spicing is all in there for you!)
Close the lid .....and leave until Christmas.

If you like very crisp onions, you can use a dry brine rather than wet. Just layer the onions up in dry table salt, rather than in a dilution (NX : does take a lot of salt!)

HesMyLobster Wed 02-Oct-13 22:34:53

I buy a kit of white make-your-own crackers from Hobbycraft/ JohnLewis (slightly larger so can fit more lovelies inside)
Then prettify and poncify with ribbons, fabric, posh handmade paper etc to match my theme. Last years were all red gingham ribbons and nordic reindeer - so beautiful!

Then I write each person's name on and use as a place setting.

I also fill with a personal gift - beautiful earrings for my mum every year, DDs' have had make up, tiny toys, jewellery (earrings the first year their ears were pierced, charms for Nomination bracelets which they both collect) last year(first year at secondary sch) they both received a personalised keyring with brand shiny new front door key attached - much excitement!

Last year I filled my DH, DD and DBs' with whiskey miniatures - really special, posh, single malt ones though - the kind that a full sized bottle would be £100+, but websites like This do miniature versions - they were all extremely chuffed with those. And it meant they didn't have to share open their new christmas gift full-sized bottles to have a special Christmas tipple.

I've also done photo-keyrings like these gorgeous things for all the adults.

This year my girls have asked if they can fill mine as a surprise! smile I usually just stick a couple of chocolates in that one at the last minute!

The crackers have become a wonderful tradition which the whole family really look forward to, which puts an enormous pressure on me to think of something original for this year I love wink

Any new suggestions of fillers gratefully received!

Pumpkintopf Wed 02-Oct-13 23:50:07

Loving all the ideas, thanks everyone smile

Lobster I had a grin at your dd being delighted with malt whiskey. They clearly develop a good palette early in your house!

Your ideas sound fab. I am planning on doing make your own crackers thus year for the first time, I have some schleich animals for my dds and a fire steel for dp.

IsaacCox Thu 03-Oct-13 07:43:32

grin TheOneWithTheHair, Of course! Just bring some Baileys smile I'm going to need it with all the gifts I have to wrap and all the poncy things I've got to make!

Barbeasty Thu 03-Oct-13 08:07:29

The miniature perfume/ aftershave tester bottles are quite good in crackers (I've got a 2ml Chanel no5 for SIL this year).

For my niece I've bought some make up. And before now I've bought the little packs of Crabtree & Evelyn hand treatments, taken them out of the box and into the
the cracker.

Memory sticks fit nicely, and I've just managed to fit a cigar in one before.

You can roll socks tightly and they fit. And socks are such a Christmas tradition! I imagine things like ties might fit too.

Paper vouchers, like amazon or theatre tickets etc are easy to fit. The credit card size plastic vouchers just don't quite do it.

I often put a troll bead in for DD, and other jewellery fits well.

We always used to have indoor fireworks in them when I was little. Everyone hands them over and they're set off at the end of the meal.

Any ideas for a cracker filling for a 1 year old boy gratefully received! Obviously anything small enough is too small for someone who puts anything in his mouth for a good chew.

HesMyLobster Thu 03-Oct-13 10:35:39

Oooh Thankyou Bar, love the socks idea - would never have thought of that! Have seen some scrumptious looking Christmas socks around too, so that may be the way I go this year smile

ps I meant DF for the whiskey, not DD!!
although don't think my DD11 would complain, she seems to love all alcohol
<terrified for the teenage years>
The opposite of DD13 who won't drink anything but water anyway, and won't even try a sip of champagne at weddings unlike DD11 who went minesweeping after the toasts at wedding last week hmm

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 03-Oct-13 11:21:30

Zeeky I hate christmas cake too! grin I've never made one or want to make one. I put my poncetastic skills into crafting and decorating for Christmas. The first year I was married and hosting I actually hand painted 12 wine glasses for Christmas dinner. blush 5 dc later I do not have the time for that but I still manage a poncetastic season!

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 03-Oct-13 11:24:25

Was just in Matalan yesterday and they have the most gorgeous red metal lanterns with hearts cut out around the sides. I don't see them online but they were just new in

Barbeasty Thu 03-Oct-13 12:32:56

I think I've solved the 1yr old's cracker too.

I wanted something he could collect/ add to, since we normally get DD a troll bead to add to her bracelet.

We're probably going to get him a set of the year's Christmas stamps. We can do it each year for much less than the beads and it's something he can keep.

We use the crackers as place cards too.

eggdipdip Thu 03-Oct-13 12:35:38

I've just bought the ingredients for my Christmas cake. Very excited! I usually let the fruit soak in chai tea as a non-boozy, child-friendly option...but I might just add a dash of brandy this year too. I base mine on this recipe in terms of timings and fruit quantities but tend to chuck in whatever dried fruit is on special offer.

This year will be the first year that we're in a house for Christmas, having lived in a poky flat for the last 15 years. So I now have a banister and a front door to decorate but sadly no fireplaces any more. Will compensate for lack of fireplaces by spending a fortune on candle and twinkly fairy lights.

Bring on the poncetastic preparations grin

eggdipdip Thu 03-Oct-13 12:44:22

Oh, need to start planning my gingerbread house (thanks for the reminder slippersock). It's a tradition I started a couple of years ago for the dc, we decorate it before going to the Christingle service on Christmas eve and then start munching on it when we get back. It's never a work of art, but it does make the house smell amazing and makes a good snack to leave out for Santa (last year some naughty reindeers had a nibble too wink).

I've been contemplating buying the fairytale cottage mould from Lakeland this year and doing a gingerbread house for the dc to ruin decorate and a chocolate one for Christmas day...has anyone else bought it?

I'm on my way Isaac! grin

You don't mind if I turn up a bit early do you?

Hope you feel better soon. thanks

IsaacCox Thu 03-Oct-13 13:44:35

grin You can help me with everything then grin

Thanks smile

hanbee Thu 03-Oct-13 15:08:37

Thanks to this thread I've just tucked four jars of very yummy looking homemade pickled gherkins in to the cupboard. Am I a bit sad because this has made me feel ridiculously cheery?

MooseyMoo Thu 03-Oct-13 15:52:20

Sainsburys have 25% off kilner jars.

I went on a foraging spree today, I got a large Kilner jar of sloes, one of blackberries and one of elderberries.

I was going to start the alcohol prep but DS2 broke his wrist.

In other news, my Christmas planner came! smile

Ah. I hope ds2 gets better soon. thanks

My lovely MIL broke her thigh or hip today. Still waiting to hear from the hospital. sad

I may have to put poncery aside while I make her a few treats. Anyone have any ideas?

somanymiles Fri 04-Oct-13 16:58:31

Have located blackberries at Teco and have just put my blackberry infused vodka in the cupboard - hope it tastes lovely by Christmas Day!

Chilli jam made today (red)
I'm going to do green too.

Blackberry Brandy is in the jar being jiggled daily, I'm going to do chutney soon, my nan has demanded a jar or 10 to see her through the winter like every other year. grin

somanymiles Fri 04-Oct-13 17:54:21

TheOneWithTheHair is your MIL crafty? Sounds like she will be laid up for a while and perhaps would appreciate a craft project to keep her busy for a while. Knitting pattern and some lovely wool? Needlepoint pattern and threads? Or something else to pass the time. Books or talking books? Nice mix of songs for her on a cheap MP3 player?

Thanks somanysmiles books and music sounds like a good idea. She's not crafty at all, in fact it bores her rigid but she does like to receive crafty gifts which makes her one of my favourite people. grin

She's been operated on today for a very mangled thigh bone so here's to a speedy recovery.

I did start my Jack Skellington decorations today though. They are going to look fab!

I love to have a beautifully co-ordinated house, all in the same sort of colours but my tree is always a riot of homemade colours and shapes and glitter made by me and the dcs. Everything tries to outshine everything else.

I love my tree. <happy sigh>

jonbonjovismissus Fri 04-Oct-13 21:58:59

Please can I ask for help on blackberry alcohol? I've got a freezer full of them and the gin/vodka/brandy/all of it sounds fab? Am going to try and be more poncey (?) this year, am ok with the foodie stuff but not so much on the craft side so am shamelessly stealing ideas [big grin]

Are you just asking how to make regular fruit alcohol, or how to ponce it up a bit?

If doing normal fruit alcohol, I'd just defrost the berries, pop them in a kilner jar and cover with twice as much alcohol as berries (frankly, it really doesn't much matter - more makes it stronger and thicker, less makes it more delicate). With blackberries you probably want a tablespoon of sugar or two in there.

If you want to ponce it up you can add spices - cinnamon or vanilla, just whole ones (ground will make it gritty), or a bit of orange zest (not the white pulp bit, any of that makes it bitter).

Then just look for pretty bottles to decant it into.

Valdeeves Sat 05-Oct-13 00:14:14

I am in love with this thread, last year I had a very young baby so wasn't pouncing it up much but I want to definitely make some gifts this year.
Love the Victorian Xmas cake! Xxx

StillWearingOddSocks Sat 05-Oct-13 06:24:09

Hurrah - I love this thread. I don't care that its 6 20am & I've been reading it in full from the beginning since 5am.

My favourite thing as been the glitter poo. Followed by the orange slice tree decs grin

A merry poncetastic Christmas to one and all - must be time for a baileys?

Darnley Sat 05-Oct-13 06:39:20

Will be ordering the organiser in a mo . Cake is a Delia recipe and will be made next week.

Am fortunate to live in a house that screams poncetastic, and who am I to argue...

jonbonjovismissus Sat 05-Oct-13 08:06:06

Thanks LRD not really a spices person but will definitely give the nice bottles a try, have ordered the organiser too!

Editededition Sat 05-Oct-13 08:14:30

Just read the orange slice decorations link (thank you Billy ) and another page on the site reminded me of something quite poncey which I did with the DCs for many years .... and think I shall repeat now with DGC.
Hand-made Nativity
Was delighted to see that Fimo is still available ...although I suppose you could do it with salt dough, if you wanted to start from scratch each year, and paint the pieces.

We had so much fun doing it, adding extra or updated figures, over a number of years.

DD's manger, with glow-in-the-dark baby became the stuff of family legend! (yes Fimo do a g-i-t-d block .... you just don't have to mind the infant Jesus being a faint shade of green grin

TheYamiOfYawn Sat 05-Oct-13 09:17:09

We do our figures with polystyrene balls stuck onto polystyrene cups with a hot glue gun. Then you draw on faces, glue on hair and fabric clothes.

OwlBeThereForYou Sat 05-Oct-13 11:11:02

Ok so fingers crossed we should be moving house in a few weeks, house itself chosen based mainly on 'where will the inflatableSanta tree go?' 'Can I have a mahoosive dining table for family Christmas?' grin

A question for decorating tho, which would go better at Christmastime, brown and green (DH says 'dark lime' blush I've said I need to see a swatch as sounds horrific), brown and navy, brown and purple? Am of course trying to push for brown and red but DH thinks this will be too much year round hmm

Because of moving I'm planning to leave all the foodie/drink gifts until we're in, end October/begining November as I don't fancy packing a load of pickles and chutneys and lugging them cross village country. But will it be too late for drinks? Planning on blackberry vodka and Christmas pudding vodka/brandy if that helps.

Christmas cake/pudding - would love to 'test' different recipes but you only get one shot every year. Should I stick with tried and tested Delia or branch out and try something new? Scared it won't be as good and I'll disappoint but it could knock Delia out of the park and I'd never know! Ah the pressure!

Turkey - how good is Nigella's bucket really? Have stuck with good 'ol Jamie for the last two years and have been very happy with it but I just love the full on ponciness and ceremony of brining a turkey in a bucket! But does it taste nice/better?

Sorry for the ridiculously long post, but I'm stuck planning on the sofa whilst sucking on bread sticks thanks to allday morning sickness, and I'm armed with my Christmas planner and biro and can't stop over thinking everything!!

mumtoone1 Sat 05-Oct-13 11:28:35

Question for chutney makers...

I was going to go to Ikea today to get the kilner style jars however its quite a distance away.

I read somewhere that some people were using the tesco/sainsburys value lemon curd jars (screw top) does anyone else use these and will they be sealed enough?

IsaacCox Sat 05-Oct-13 12:43:15

Help please! I want to make this mango and apple chutney. Do you think if I make it next week, it'll still be ok for Christmas hampers or should I wait? Going to Tesco this afternoon for some other stuff and was wondering if I should get the ingredients for this? Thanks smile

IsaacCox Sat 05-Oct-13 12:44:06

mumtoone1, I've used value jars before and they worked fine smile

Slippersocklover Sat 05-Oct-13 13:30:44

MrsHoratioNelson, your Lekuchen recipe seems fabulously easy, thanks!grin Though DH looked at me like this hmm when I explained what I was laughing at! I think he thinks I'm being slightly ambitious with the poncing this year.

Owl' I've always done Delia's Christmas cake, but I'm trying Mary Berry's this year after trying a very successful apple pie recipe of hers.

I tried making Nigellas spruced up vanilla cake as well last year, but it was a major flop, being still raw in the middle. I'm not sure where I went so wrong to be honest!

mumtoone1 Sat 05-Oct-13 13:53:51

Thanks Issac your a star! Just been to Sainsburys and stocked up. Going to make a lemon frozen yogurt with the curd so it doesn't go to waste.

I also got some kilner wax discs to put on top of the chutney just in case for extra seal smile

Valdeeves Sun 06-Oct-13 00:56:38

Guys what would be a fantastic homade gift for children? When we are together, the ages are 1,2,3 and 4.

TheYamiOfYawn Sun 06-Oct-13 08:12:55

Good home-made gifts for children - dye some playsilks, make sensory playdough (with food colouring, spices and flavourings, and glitter), gingerbread house with twinkle light inside. Treasure basket for the little one? Ribbon streamers on sticks. Hand-made felt daily activity calendar. Signs with their name on to put over their door/bed.

Valdeeves Sun 06-Oct-13 09:54:50

Brilliant!!! Thank you

ethelb Sun 06-Oct-13 11:19:48

Made some fabulous apple and chilli jelly from foraged apples yesterday, and some wonderful pear and apple chutney (which also has quite a kick) from some scrumped pears.

Must go and pick green tomatoes today before the frost gets them, to make some green tomato ketchup. Green tomato salsa already in the freezer.

Oh, and must convince DP that he needs to do the sloe gin TODAY or it won't be ready for Christmas.

Unfortunatly I also have work....

WantAnOrange Sun 06-Oct-13 12:09:44

Hello ladies, can I ask some advice? I made blackcurrant vodka (it's lush!) which has just been bottled up but I was wondering if there is anything I can do with the infused berries? They are rather strong but it seems a shame to waste them!

Today I have cleared a shelf just for home-made jams, chutneys, jellies and liqueurs. Does that make me poncy enough to join?

TheYamiOfYawn Sun 06-Oct-13 12:44:27

Eat the berries with ice cream, or put them in grown-up jelly.

MadeOfStarDust Sun 06-Oct-13 13:25:13

made lemon skittles vodka - it is NOT going to last til Christmas..... blush - let alone have any left for presents for OTHER people..... blush

I've been on a curd mission today, Lime curd and Blueberry and Raspberry curd are done. smile

rootypig Sun 06-Oct-13 18:19:51

Valdeeves this might not be suitable for the youngest one, but home made hot chocolate jars are sweet for children.

Take a small kilner jar or similar. Make two marshmallow snowmen - use two sizes of white marshmallow (cut one down if need be), use some form of edible decoration to make them look like snowmen with faces and buttons (mini choc chips, silver balls, angelica, whatever. Bits of chocolate coated pretzel for arms. Stick them together with sugar icing made of icing sugar and water). Stand the snowmen facing outward in the jar.

Then make hot chocolate powder - buy some nice quality cocoa, and mix with sugar as needed. Mix in teeny marshmallows to look like snow. Or chunks of white chocolate. Adding chunks of nice dark chocolate can make it a bit more luxurious too. Add any flavouring you fancy (this maybe more relevant for grown ups! orange zest or oil, peppermint oil, nutmeg or cinnamon, booze). Fill the jar with the hot choc powder so it surrounds the snowmen and keeps them in place, iyswim. Finish with a wee woolly scarf tied around if you can be bothered.

You could add other things for excitement - some other toppings like smarties (put these in little bags to keep separate from the powder), edible glitter grin, those balls of chocolate on a stick for stirring for real gluttons like me

A nice christmas eve tradition I think, hot choc and a christmas film smile

ethelb Sun 06-Oct-13 18:44:54

Green tomato ketchup is foul... that one will lurk on the shelf until the zombie apocalypse

Zeeky Sun 06-Oct-13 19:32:45

Ethelb what recipe did you use for your apple & chilli jelly?

Trumpton Sun 06-Oct-13 19:49:08

I ordered my paperwhite narcissi this week. I grow them on pebbles in hurricane vases. Start them off November 5th in a dark place until shoots are 4inches high then tip most of the water away ( carefully ) and replace with gin and water in a ratio of 1/7.

Results in sturdy stems and lush flowers that last well into the New Year.

See HERE for the science behind it.

Poncetastic enough ?

rootypig Sun 06-Oct-13 19:53:12

Sounds like a waste of gin to me Trumpton grin

But! beautiful and wonderfully poncetastic.

Trumpton Sun 06-Oct-13 20:04:38

Cheap gin will do. And if I get desperate enough I can drink it ! Yeuch wine

I planted them in white bowls and white fish tank pebbles for Xmas day table settings last year smile

Now I know I've been on about the chilli jam a lot, but I've just layered red and then green in a jar and it looks really lovely as a gift. The recipe makes 3 400ml jars plus half a jar so it would be easy to make 7 layered jars. smile

Zeeky Mon 07-Oct-13 12:38:06

How on earth do you layer the colours of jam in a jar. Do you have to let the first layer set before adding the second layer?

Yes I did red, let it set in the jar, then green. smile

ethelb Mon 07-Oct-13 15:49:50
WaitingForMe Mon 07-Oct-13 16:51:03

Owl - My house is a palette of grey, duck egg, mushroom and cream with the exception of the red dining room. I'm considering redecorating the dining room as it's actually the hardest room to make Christmassy. I find that greenery really pops against the neutral background.

Trumpton - I'm going to order narcissi and do that. It sounds beautiful!

I have been doing some serious ponce planning. At the weekend I power washed the paving in the front garden then DH swept in new grout. My mum gave us two huge terracotta tubs which have been situated on either side of the bay and I've bought obelisks to go in them. I'm planting bulbs for spring between evergreens and an ivy to go up the obelisk. Come December I'll be adding lights and baubles. Hopefully they won't be too Christmassy the rest of the year but will look like little Christmas trees when needed.

Valdeeves Mon 07-Oct-13 18:15:47

I bought an Xmas crafts magazine today, low cash flow so a bit of a treat. They have this idea about making snow gloves out of jam jars?

Trumpton Mon 07-Oct-13 19:06:54

Oh I bought that one . Not sure you mean snow gloves tho' ! :-)

Valdeeves Mon 07-Oct-13 21:59:43

Ha ha - globes!!! Do you think there is a plastic alternative - glass wouldn't be good the little ones.

ethelb Mon 07-Oct-13 23:47:58

Valdeeves tesco value peanut butter is in plastic jam jars and would fo the trick

bymoonlight Tue 08-Oct-13 10:16:27

Snow globes made of out plastic is genuis! My 3yo and 6yo would love it. Can you post how to do it Valdeeves?

OwlBeThereForYou Tue 08-Oct-13 10:36:23

We still can't decide on paint colours, going to get more swatches today.

Have started making mini stockings. The crazy plan is to make 24 to hang as an advent calendar and more to give as gifts, with a chocolate or something inside, along with their other presents. These stockings are knitted. I've lost it confused

Did pick up a lovely Christmas tea towel yesterday, and also a VERY un poncetastic Christmas jumper! Please don't kick me out! Can't resist some cheesiness and as I'll be 4 1/2 months pregnant at Christmas my cheese board will be limited! That is my verypoor excuse and I'm sticking to it!

pleaselet----me----stay! wink

OwlBeThereForYou Tue 08-Oct-13 10:37:45

Ah sod it, I failed at the line thing hmm Not going to help the pleading!

IsaacCox Tue 08-Oct-13 12:14:39

The first Christmas cake is in the oven! Smelling lovely. 1 down, 2 to go hmm

The gift tags came yesterday, so I have stamped them all with this stamp. Still need to do the other side with this and this

I may also have spent some time on Paint designing how I'm going to wrap the gifts blush

Do you have a recipe for the green and red chilli jam, please Titsalina? It sounds immense. How long do you have to set one layer before you put the next lot in? Will it stay separated until Christmas do you think, or will it mix?

IsaacCox Tue 08-Oct-13 17:50:23

I've just made 14 jars of mincemeat, so that's something else crossed off the list smile

If you google Nigella's chilli jam it will come up on her website, the recipe is for red but if you swap the peppers and chillies for green it's the same quantities etc.

I left a day in between in the fridge so it was 100% set! it goes really 'set' so they layer nicely and stay layered.

If I could find enough yellow chillies I would have done a yellow layer but 150g chillies is actually quite a lot and they don't sell yellow ones in the shop around here.

It's a very easy recipe. smile

IsaacCox Tue 08-Oct-13 18:02:53

Brilliant, thank you smile I was doing Nigella's chill jam anyway but I never thought to do green/yellow. Fab idea.

Valdeeves Tue 08-Oct-13 18:22:51

Thanks Ethelb - I am going to make them - I'll post ASAP on how to make. It's in a nice Xmas mag out at the mo - Xmas makes its called.
They also have glass jars with floating candles, rosemary and berries which look lovely.

The green isn't as vibrant as the red because the colour is lost more in cooking but it looks lovely contrasted against the red. smile

I'm off to home bargains to get some hamper baskets this weekend.
I'm going to do Lemon Marmalade during this week too if I can.

I made some marmalade and blueberry jam with the dc today - not as marvellous as some of your recipes sound, but I am merely an apprentice poncer in my first year of poncing.

I am already running out of my stash of glass jars, and I have raspberries in the freezer to make more jam this weekend. Where is the best place to buy jars from?

I have all the jars, DP sent a pallet of them to my house a couple of years ago. I'm finally down to my last 30 shock

Ladies, I have 2 buffets to make this year, I have a reputation of chief buffet maker-er in this family, I need it to be amazing.

Tell me what's your ultimate buffet piece please?

Iheartcrunchiebars Wed 09-Oct-13 09:48:53

Coronation chicken every time. Or a really yummy quiche. Or an unusual salad. I LOVE a buffet!

eggdipdip Wed 09-Oct-13 10:58:55

Delia's sausage rolls and warm potato salad are winners here.

jonbonjovismissus Wed 09-Oct-13 10:59:28

I always do a really big ham in the middle of the table with cloves etc studded on the outside, I just think it's so festive! Or salmon for the veggies........

eggdipdip Wed 09-Oct-13 11:03:49

If you're looking for cheap jars, we bought criminally cheap curry sauce from Sainsbury's one year just for the jars. Dumped the curry sauce and ran the jars through the dishwasher blush

Asda have these or I think these are the ones we bought from Sainsburys.

1919 Wed 09-Oct-13 11:18:45

Vegetarians don't eat salmon.

I will do a ham/gammon and breads/cheese/olives etc. I need a few good dips for crudités and some other hand held nibble bits for 7 children and 7 adults.

Thanks for the jar tip eggdip .

I, too, would steer away from salmon as a veggie option. Because it isn't veggie (obviously unless you are catering for a pescarian).

For buffets I do Delia's cold chicken pie.

bymoonlight Wed 09-Oct-13 14:39:23

Everyone loves Christmas Pie on a buffet

I make it every year for the boxing day buffet.

MooseyMoo Wed 09-Oct-13 18:21:01

Favourite buffet food: Delia's devilled chicken drumsticks

Goat cheese, red onion and thyme vol au vents. I just want to supersize these smile

All lovely, thank you. smile

Today I've made Lemon Marmalade and Honey, ginger and Lemon Marmalade. smile

Just chutney and the pickled onions and gherkins to do now and I'm all jarred out.

jonbonjovismissus Thu 10-Oct-13 13:03:45

Apologies to the veggies for salmon - I only know one & she eats it blush!
My Christmas organiser has come but it's so nice & shiny I don't want to write in it.........will be unearthing all of the jars I've been saving tonight to do some chutneys & jams over the weekend - v excited!

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 10-Oct-13 13:31:23

A handy one to add to buffets is nigellas loaded potato skins. You can make a full tray and then freeze ahead. A dressed salmon does look pretty on a table too

CrazyOldCatLady Thu 10-Oct-13 15:27:57

Ooh - any chance of the honey, ginger and lemon marmalade, Titsalina? I can think of a lot of uses for that...

AnneEyhtMeyer Thu 10-Oct-13 15:34:24

Anyone got any ideas for blueberries? I have a lot frozen and I really need the freezer space.

GlitterKitty Thu 10-Oct-13 16:39:56

Has anyone made Sarah Ravens Christmas cake? I usually do Delia but fancy a change this Christmas, and her book just arrived and is brilliant! Lovely poncy recipes and unrealistic flower arranging ideas. Great.

Am going to be organised and make things this year. Not a pudding though because that's such an arse. E.g. SR Mincemeat with cobnuts & damsons, if I can get any cobnuts. And damsons. And maybe the Christmas rownanberry jelly.

Guitargirl Thu 10-Oct-13 17:06:03

I spent a very pleasant half an hour this morning in Liberty's Christmas department. Very pleasant. Most of the decorations are Gisela Graham but I don't think have seen such a large collection anywhere else and all colour coordinated by theme. Very nice wrapping paper too. Managed to walk out of there £68 lighter - and I only went in for a look! blush

Anne I made a batch of this jam last weekend, 'tis very nice.

Of course, it's here

As a tip (although don't tell anyone because I'll be evicted from the thread) if you go to Lakeland and buy the cans of fruit for Marmalade making you can get the lemon one and add 2 chunks of frozen ginger (or fresh grated) and a couple of tbsp honey, it works brilliantly. smile

Tonight it's a toss up between making Cranberry and Apple chutney or painting the bathroom...

Zeeky Thu 10-Oct-13 20:00:55

Poncing on hold for me at the mo as this week I have gone down with a stinking cold and found out I'm preggers shock!!!!

Once my shock & illness has abated, I will be cracking on with the poncing & making piccalilli and some mincemeat. I did manage to go out and pick 3kg of sloes on Monday, so will be making enough sloe gin to see us through at least 5 years!!

Valdeeves Thu 10-Oct-13 20:10:45

Just started to eat my way through peanut butter to make plastic snow globes - the kids are allergic so they can't help me out!
What's your best Xmas biscuit to bake and give?

AnneEyhtMeyer Thu 10-Oct-13 20:52:09

Oh attheendoftheday that recipe is so simple, it is perfect! I will give that a go! Thank you! smile

I'm going to give that blueberry jam a try. It looks so easy.

Congratulations Zeeky. thanks

I'm going to make peanut butter and vanilla fudge for MIL in a bit. I didn't love it but she devoured a huge box in about 6 hrs.

This recipe.

OwlBeThereForYou Thu 10-Oct-13 21:16:07

Congratulations Zeeky!! How far along are you? I'm finding 1st trimester tiredness is hindering full on ponceing hmm hoping it eases soon! Too much to do!

leesmum Thu 10-Oct-13 21:44:52

JUST CLICKED ON LINK ABOVE AND TROJAN VIRUS WARNING COME UP!

leesmum Thu 10-Oct-13 21:45:44

The one that says THIS RECIPIE

Zeeky Thu 10-Oct-13 22:05:42

Thanks guys! I'm barely pregnant - about 4 weeks. It'll be #3 for us. It's a bit of a shock as hadn't really started trying for a baby as DH not keen on having any more but I'd been trying to talk him round. I must have ovulated way earlier than normal - my body was taking charge!! We're both overjoyed though grin.

Sorry Leesmum. It comes up fine when I click on it. I'll report and have it removed.

Done.

Trumpton Fri 11-Oct-13 02:47:14

That link was fine when I looked at it at about 10pm by the way.

leesmum Fri 11-Oct-13 07:40:59

theOneWithTheHair I'm not sure what happend, a big red square popped up on laptop with a warning and a scan began, I still never got to see your recipie!

Congratulations Zeeky

No problem leesmum.

I don't want to be responsible for buggering up someone's computer.

I can post the very,very simple recipe later when I'm not on my phone if anyone is interested.

Congratulations Zeeky !

I would love the peanut butter and vanilla fudge recipe, please!

For anyone making the blueberry jam recipe, I generally add two or three times as much water as in the recipe as I find it dries out very quickly (but maybe this is because of the pan I use?)

bymoonlight Fri 11-Oct-13 10:40:33

valdeeves - Could you do a quick post on how to make them smile

I would also like the vanilla and peanut butter fudge recipe please smile

I've done the Cranberry and Apple chutney. I'd really like something nice and bright to make next, all my things so far, although lovely, they're all shades of brown/orange and I'd like to brighten things up, does anyone have any ideas?

hanbee Fri 11-Oct-13 13:51:52

Just wanted to say a massive thank you to the person who posted the pickled gherkin recipe right at the beginning of the thread. We've just tried ours and they're bloody fantastically gorgeous. No way they'll last until Christmas, I better make some more!

Titsalina you could try the gherkins or nigellas chilli jelly, both nice and bright.

bymoonlight Fri 11-Oct-13 15:11:40

Ooh was it me with this recipe?

Hope so, as we have some in the cupboard and it would be nice to know its nice - although that may not help its chances of survival till Christmas grin

WantAnOrange Fri 11-Oct-13 15:42:44

I know tis has been done before but can anyone recommend a nice Christmas tree?

We have always had a real tree but tis year DD will be 15 months. She's already walking and into EVERYTHING!

I'm going to get a cheapy argos one for the playroom that the kids can decorate (I'm a child minder) but I need a beautiful one for the bay window...

hanbee Fri 11-Oct-13 20:59:34

bymoonlight it was you, thank you! My whole extended family love them and have asked for the recipe. Fortunately we have hundreds of cucumbers growing so I can eat make loads!

ShouldHaveStayedHome Fri 11-Oct-13 22:03:32

Slippersocklover thanks for the ideas, we indeed have a banister and shelving so that will definitely help for the first year of ponce in our house!

I love The Nightmare Before Christmas! All these Jack Skellington references are making me think of Hallowe'en planning though...

bymoonlight Fri 11-Oct-13 22:42:55

Yay! Glad to know its nice hanbee

Can't wait to try it now .. must resist!

Valdeeves Sat 12-Oct-13 00:20:30

Hi - in a nutshell you use shower sealant glue to stick an Xmas decoration to the lid upside down. Then you fill a jar with a bit of washing up liquid, water and some glycerine and glitter. Then you seal the top with the sealant and voila - snow globe! The mag also suggested putting a stencil inside first and painting it on the other side of the glass - a snowflake or dot pattern in a festive shape.

Valdeeves Sat 12-Oct-13 00:21:14

And congrats Zeeky!!! Xxx

Valdeeves Sat 12-Oct-13 00:27:35

Anyone know the cheapest place to buy felt online? I want to make some decs and cards with it

Trumpton Sat 12-Oct-13 03:25:38

These people Fabricland are fab.
Scroll down to felt/ felt squares on menu on left hand side.

rootypig Sat 12-Oct-13 07:59:21

Ooh have just found this IKEA wall hanging. Ok IKEA is a dirty word in ponceland but I rather like it. Minimal ponce? [considers]

rootypig Sat 12-Oct-13 08:08:56

Alright it glows in the dark. This is fabulous but not remotely poncetastic. Carry on as you were grin

Just to let you know, MNHQ emailed to say the link is fine but here is the recipe anyway.

Ingredients:

1lb vanilla frosting
16oz smooth peanut butter

Method:

Put the frosting and peanut butter in a bowl and microwave for 1 minute.
Stir until smooth.
Put in a 9x9" tin and put in the fridge until firm.
Slice into squares.

That's it. Soooo easy.

Trigglesx Sat 12-Oct-13 11:03:46

Must read back and catch up, but I've noticed the Nordic Christmas stuff is everywhere. Must be the "in" thing this year.

This thread is very quiet this year! shock Are we. It feeling it yet?

Shall I spice things up by running past you the idea of a chocolate fountain and/or a cheese fondue at my buffet table?

Trumpton Mon 14-Oct-13 08:46:02

I thought maybe it was broken !
If you have a chocolate fountain do not get a stick
caught in the mechanism !
Chocolate everywhere as s
The stick spun merrily around spraying chocolate everywhere .

OwlBeThereForYou Mon 14-Oct-13 12:37:20

We've decided on colours for the new house! Purple and red in the downstairs rooms, I'm pretty confident that all of our decorations acquired over the years will work. Reds and gold with the occasional hint of green wink pretty traditional stuff. And we've got a lot of vintage paper decorations that we've never used before. Can't wait to get moved in now so I can start baking and making stuff! I've written up a timeline checklist of when things will get made. Starting with the Christmas cake as I'm already feeling antsy that it's not done hmm estate agents need to stop dragging their feet and let us move in already!!

mumtoone1 Mon 14-Oct-13 18:47:52

I've currently got a sage and onion stuffing in the oven. I'm trying to perfect a recipe to save me buying it every year. Then It can be added into the holy grail ie my Cath Kidston Christmas Organiser smile

Valdeeves Mon 14-Oct-13 23:42:47

I thought it was quiet too and I missed the poncing last year as I had a newborn.
I'm really excited about baking gifts and want to make see fantabulous stuff. Anyone got any ideas for chic Xmas biscuit gifts?

Valdeeves Mon 14-Oct-13 23:44:21

Titsalina - chocolate fountains always remind me of that episode of the Vicar of Dibley where they get her one as a present and she dives in.

IsaacCox Tue 15-Oct-13 09:00:05

I made this mango chutney yesterday. I doubled the quantity and added a couple of handfuls of sultanas near the end. It made 18 8oz/190ml jars just a bit then!

It actually took about 5 hours to make shock It's worth it though as it's delicious smile

I'm going to make Mary Berry's Christmas chutney today.

How long do they keep for please Isaac?

The mango ones I mean.

Trigglesx Tue 15-Oct-13 09:34:24

Valdeeves Me too! I cannot see a chocolate fountain without giggling about that. grin

IsaacCox Tue 15-Oct-13 09:38:50

I'm not sure tbh, TheOne. I was reading the comments and someone said they'd kept some for a year and was still ok (unopened)

Some seemed to make theirs in October for Christmas gifts so I thought it'd be ok to make now. Sorry I can't give a proper answer, perhaps someone else on the thread will know smile

That sounds great. At least I can put some in my hamper for the Mums without worrying. Thank you.

I love the Vicar of Dibley! I'll have to make everyone promise not to dive though, I was only going to get a tiny one for the table emainly for me the kids. smile

I'm doing teachers biscuits in Pringles tubes (decorated of course) so I need a nice biscuit recipe that can be cut with a cookie cutter, preferably a nutty/cranberry/chocolate chip cookie type thing?

hanbee Tue 15-Oct-13 10:10:05

I found a instructions for making your own candy canes yesterday. Has anyone tried this? Am concerned that it'll result in sticky sugar burns but tempted by the fact I cpuld have candy canes that colour coordinate with the wrapping/decorations. ...

IsaacCox Tue 15-Oct-13 15:10:53

I've not tried making them myself hanbee, but they sound good. Do you have a link please thanks

I've just made the Mary Berry Christmas chutney and it is gorgeous. It's made 10 8oz jars. Now to see if I can leave it to mature for a month before I cave and open a jar!

hanbee Tue 15-Oct-13 18:53:04

I found it in this year's Prima Christmas makes but there is one here as well

http://candy.about.com/od/hardcandyrecipes/r/candy_canes.htm

IsaacCox Tue 15-Oct-13 19:17:17

Thanks smile

BriGalway Wed 16-Oct-13 21:18:09

My goodness people no comments left today...either that or my thread is not updating.....10wks people 10wks to CHRISTMAS.......������

IsaacCox Thu 17-Oct-13 06:33:31

grin Bri. I can't believe there's only 10 weeks!

I made Nigella's sweet chilli jam yesterday. So I only have champagne and strawberry (and glitter! smile) jam left that I can make now (food wise), until it's a bit closer.

I may experiment with making some paper snowflakes today though, which are going to go on presents, a little bit like this. Not sure whether to do them with plain white paper or some naice gold paper I bought in the January sales but not using to wrap gifts now.

Follyfoot Thu 17-Oct-13 06:37:00

Thank you so much to whoever linked to the Magpie sale

The spiral wash and make up bag arrived yesterday - its lovely. And only £6

Follyfoot Thu 17-Oct-13 06:38:36

Ooops so sorry, wrong Christmas thread blush

TheYamiOfYawn Thu 17-Oct-13 08:12:15

I will clear out the kitchen cupboards today, see what dried fruit I need to get for the cake, buy it and soak it. And I will clear out half a cupboard to be a Christmas food cupboard.

BriGalway Thu 17-Oct-13 09:10:35

IsaacCox so many people are talking about jam and jellies. Especially Nigellas sweet chilli jam, my question is, how would you serve this? With what? Sandwiches, breakfast, cold meats? Does this chilli jam go well with all meats....

IsaacCox Thu 17-Oct-13 09:17:10

I find chilli jam goes with pretty much anything- cheeses, cold meats, crackers, bacon sandwiches, chesse sandwiches (any sandwich!), sausages... My favourite is to just dip chunks of cheese in and munch.

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 17-Oct-13 11:06:59

I agree, we really need to get our ponce on grin
So far I have made my sloe gin and blackberry vodka. Going to have a go at nigellas chilli jam this weekend. Should I buy specific jars or can I recycle? I am actually nervous about the whole sterilising thing.
Craftwise I have a huge bag of pinecones mixed with cinnamon oil drying away in the hot press. Need to get cellophane bags for those. I bought huge bag of 20cm long cinnamon sticks which I will break up to put with cones and tie with gingham ribbon & a luggage tag. They will ooze poncetastic. (These are for swim coaches, violin and piono tutors)
My red & white nordic bedding (god I LOVE saying the word nordic) arrived which ver ver rusticy.
On my craft to do list are:
Going to attempt something like bauble chandelier pinterest this chandelier but in my own colour scheme. I have a small wooden hoop that I'm going to use as my starting point. It would have to be battery lights though.
I also quite like this vintage lampshade tree what do you fellow poncers think of it? I was going to attempt making one

Now I feel much more poncetastic after that post

Zeeky Thu 17-Oct-13 11:44:11

Ruby you can recycle your jam jars to make it cheaper. To sterilise, just wash the jars & lids in hot soapy water and make sure all old labels are off and then dry and put upside down on a baking tray in a low oven (100 degrees ish) until you are ready to fill them. Nigella's chilli jam is yummy - I've made 2 batches already!

Got a tesco delivery coming in a minute with ingredients for making mincemeat! Quite excited, as it is my first time of making it! I've got a load of ikea kilner-style jars all ready for it!

I do feel slightly panicky that it is only 10 weeks until Christmas, as other than making vast amounts of jam/chutney/sloe gin for present hampers, I have done no other prep or shopping, and am at a total loss as to what buy the DC for Christmas and how to decorate our new fireplace! I'm hoping to spend tomorrow getting some planning done while DC are at school & nursery.

hanbee Thu 17-Oct-13 13:19:44

I am addicted to the home made gherkins. Just had to make another 9 jars as have already eaten the 3 I made earlier. Oops.

SpinningSpider Thu 17-Oct-13 13:59:15

What are you eating them with hanbee?

Can I use regular 'supermarket' cucumbers for making pickles? You can't get the little ones anywhere.

hanbee Thu 17-Oct-13 14:58:22

I'm eating them with anything bread and cheese, wherever you'd eat a pickled onion I guess.

I made them with regular cucumbers, well massive ones as we grew our own this year. You cut them into strips so it all works fine.

Huzzah! grin I'm a pickle fiend so I best make many jars! Thanks

IreneR Thu 17-Oct-13 16:48:38

I still have done n.o.t.h.i.n.g towards poncetasticness yet, but I'm thinking about it a lot.

We are in a new house this year, and although the last one was on more than 4 acres, with tons of holly and ivy all over the place, this house will lend itself better to poncery.

I am still painting the woodwork at the moment, but once that's finished, the downstairs will cry out for holiday decoration.

How many of you make your own wreaths? How do you keep real greenery from wilting before the Big Day? Or are we supposed to use faux greenery for wreaths? (Don't tell Martha Stewart I asked.)

I am about to get a new front door, and I'm thinking earnestly about painting it an orange-y red. That will mean no actual red on the wreath, I think, but I thought something lovely in many shades of green will be nice.

I'm going to start my wreath tonight. It's a yarn one so no real greenery. I will have feathers though! grin

MegBusset Thu 17-Oct-13 23:16:55

I would like to make some kind of homemade confectionary for my work colleagues, I have zero poncing or cooking talent so needs to be really (and I mean really) easy. Can anyone recommend something which looks really good for minimum skill?

Coconut ice is the easiest thing EVER! And it looks great in little bags for gifts, you can change the colours too if you didn't want pink and white as traditional, you could do red or green for a Christmassy twist. I'll find the recipe I use..

coconut ice

Also try Nigella's hokey pokey, it's like cinder toffee and it's ridiculously easy and looks very posh dipped in chocolate. smile

mumtoone1 Fri 18-Oct-13 10:45:47

Thanks Titsa re coconut ice recipe. sounds an easy thing to make with kids. I'm going to give this a go. Any idea how long it lasts?

Trigglesx Fri 18-Oct-13 11:05:27

Oh, thank you for the coconut ice recipe. We'll definitely use that!

I am in the midst of some organisation of my craft things, so I can start planning my Christmas cards. I have been a bit lazy and bought them the last couple years, but back to making them this year.

girlywhirly Fri 18-Oct-13 12:18:30

Irene, if your wreath is for an exterior door, the cold will keep it fresh.

It's just our centrally heated interiors that are the problem, where in order to last foliage needs stems to be in water. Originally evergreens were only brought in to the home on Christmas eve to decorate with so no problem with wilting.

CackleCackle Fri 18-Oct-13 12:55:15

Ahem. It's the 25th September, which means....

It's my birthday grin slow on the uptake here but whatever

Happy belated birthday CackleCackle! grin

I finished my first ever Christmas wreath. Yay! Picture on profile if anyone is interested.

The flowers are meant to be at the bottom. I don't know why it's been turned.

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 18-Oct-13 14:46:04

Irene you can buy a florist foam wreath to soak which will keep your foilage fresh or a cheaper alternative is to cut one block of foam up into smaller blocks and use duct tape to wrap at intervals around a cheap wire ring.
Was in home bargains just now and bought some pretty boxes for putting foodie bits into, also 150 mini christmas cupcake wrappers for 79p, not gaudie ones naice red & green gingham ones. Also red and green retro paper straws which will look pretty for a party for dc at xmas.Also their brown cardboard wine bottle boxes will be gorgeous for my sloe gin. Its all in the presentation people grin
Tk maxx had lovely american style jars of christmas sugar (red & green) you could use these for baking or to add in with a foodie hamper.

MegBusset Fri 18-Oct-13 14:50:20

Thanks for the coconut ice tip, that's a great idea. Where would I find naice (but cheap!) little cellophane bags to put them in? can you tell I'm a newbie to poncing

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 18-Oct-13 14:56:04

onewiththehair thats gorgeous!

Thanks Ruby. I'm a bit chuffed with it. grin

TyrannosaurusBex Fri 18-Oct-13 19:22:25

Ooh, can I join in? I have just about finished buying presents for the DCs and can now concentrate on poncing. I made my sloe gin this week and have just been checking the store cupboard for the ingredients for Christmas pudding vodka. I'm having a yearn for that lampshade tree...

Lakeland for naice cellophane bags, they even do festive ones if that's your erm.... bag grin

No clue to how long it lasts, I used to make it for welcoming people at the doors of the panto I used to be in every year, it only ever lasted a few minutes. smile

CatAmongThePigeons Sat 19-Oct-13 21:02:22

Remarking place as I need to up my ponce

TheYamiOfYawn Sat 19-Oct-13 22:53:47

I might be able to ponce up the house this year after all! I posted earlier about the grim filthy paisley carpet that blights my sitting room. DP has agreed to ditch it asap, and I have just ordered a load of bamboo flooring samples. With a bit of decluttering, and a floating shelf over the gaping hole in the wall where I ripped out a gas fire shabby chic fireplace to make a mantelpiece, I think I might manage a lovely tasteful Christmas in one room at least.

I'm finally getting around to making the pickles today. smile

I went to Dulnem Mill and got the lovely gingerbread man throws and IKEA to get the gingerbread house kits, table runners, placemats and elves. grin

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Sun 20-Oct-13 16:19:23

Right, I am now ready to start poncing! I have finally done the household sewing tasks so I can start making the Christmas stockings. I've got some gorgeous Christmas fabrics from the moda aspen frost collection carefully chosen so the stockings will complement each other.

Currently having a micro-strop over my very modern open fire just having a chimney bit and no mantel piece to decorate. angry Not sure how the stockings will get hung up.

Going to get fruit in to soak tonight so I can make the cake next weekend, and I need to plan some chutney.

I have now made my mincemeat, Christmas cake, and Sloe Gin (2 bottles only WTF are the sloes this year!?). All Sarah Raven. I usually do Delia so interested to see how things will compare.

Now embarked on a huge pre-Christmas cleaning out of cupboards & drawres. I shall be selling old toys if I can smuggle them out of the house.

Next on my poncing list is a trip to Ikea for knitted cushions and giftwrap, 'making something with pine cones' and planting up bulbs for indoor decoration.

Also I might get some small conifers from Ikea and make indoor minature window boxes for the upstairs hall- with teeny decorations on the trees and underplanted with bulbs/moss & a bit of fake snow. Would only be able to bring them in for xmas week but would be lovely and poncey.

Has anyone seen any good paper garlands suitable for a hall- i.e. cross ceiling ones, not too bulky- maybe white snowflake?

The sloes are all outside my house, there are millions of them, the hedgerow is groaning, I've made Sloe Gin but there is only so many bottles I can make a year!

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 20-Oct-13 23:11:19

screamsinthenight someone must have got out picking before you? I was amazed at the amount of sloes growing
foxtrot you could put your stockings before filling on a length of ribbon across the chimney breast. Or hang from between spindles on the stairs

IcedTeaOneSugar Sun 20-Oct-13 23:52:41

Has anyone seen any red and white wrapped sweets, sort of like candy canes but round sweets, i'm fancying some in a glass jar on the kitchen table as part of a centre piece, darn pinterest.

There are no proper sweet shops around here sad

IcedTeaOneSugar Sun 20-Oct-13 23:57:13

foxtrot have you got stocking hangers?

We don't have a mantle, dds stocking is hung on a hanger on the tv cabinet, for decorative purposes, but magically appears on the end of her bed during christmas eve.

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Mon 21-Oct-13 08:16:01

At the risk of sounding a bit dim, what's a stocking hanger? I'm imagining it to be similar to a festively themed cupboard door handle that you can hang stocking from.

That reminds me, I mustn't forget to include hanging hooks when I make the stockings.

No nice banisters to decorate either - my stairs are enclosed by a solid brick wall with a very tall radiator attached. And just to make the Christmas decorating a bit harder, we don't have any window sills either...

Yes, someone did get to them before me! Still have hopes of finding more. I could see their trampling footprints all around the bushes, bastards. [cross]

grin That's challenging Foxtrot. So what rooms do people ponce at Christmas? I always do front room, dining room, kitchen, porch, then a little bit in the upstairs hall.

My mum used to do EVERY room! Even the loo was decorated. I think this is a ponce too far.

Iced Tea- Mint Balls?

...or if you prefer a more challenging sweet- I give you Bacon Candy confused I would be horrified to put one of these in my mouth thinking it was peppermint...

HardFacedCareeristBitchNigel Mon 21-Oct-13 12:43:17

Yay, i woke up this morning and thought "must check poncetastic" and here it is smile
Am just about to order the cath kidston planner..

HardFacedCareeristBitchNigel Mon 21-Oct-13 12:47:05

I am doing a 5 day candy buffet this year in the living room

HardFacedCareeristBitchNigel Mon 21-Oct-13 12:48:37

We moved house this year to a perfect Crimbo Entertaining House from a titchy terrace. So i will be poncing every inch possible !

HardFacedCareeristBitchNigel Mon 21-Oct-13 12:54:00

I have the Martha Stewart Holiday book if anyone wants anything out of it

IcedTeaOneSugar Mon 21-Oct-13 20:52:27

screamsinthenight bacon candy is the right colour, but not quite what I was after grin.

foxtrot... a stocking hanger is a heavy ornament with a hook this kind of thing

Rubybrazilianwax Mon 21-Oct-13 22:42:04

Pray tell what is a 5 day candy buffet?

somanymiles Mon 21-Oct-13 22:50:33

christmas cake smells wafting through the house as I write... lovely. delia says to bake for 4 1/4 hours but it has only had 3 1/2 and I am too tired to stay up so I have just left it in the oven and turned it off. fingers crossed. I have read a few messages on here that say people think 4 hours is too long anyway. ... ds aged 2 had a wonderful time "helping" me in the kitchen this evening too, which gave me an early feeling of Christmas cheer!

HardFacedCareeristBitchNigel Mon 21-Oct-13 23:23:17

candy buffet will be going up on christmas eve and coming down on the saturday - 5 day candy buffet

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 24-Oct-13 12:03:26

Foxtrot could you do something like this on your enclosed staircase wall? The washi tape easily peels off.
Or this would be very cool and narrow for a hallway.
Or if it was me, I'd buy one of those big big canvas from the works for £10 and paint a tree on. Poke holes through & push little led lights through to look like a sparkly tree.
Disclaimer: I am quite fanatical when it comes to festive decorating

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 24-Oct-13 12:05:10

trex do you love it too? I keep seeing loads of shades in the charity shops and reckon I could make it for under a tenner. I'd only use scraps, ribbons etc that I already have.

WaitingForMe Thu 24-Oct-13 19:39:50

Right, oh poncetastic ones. Last week I found some wonderful bendy branches (not sure what they are but they're as thick as my finger). I gathered loads and got DH to come and pick DS and I up.

They would bend to make a wreath but I've no idea where to start - maybe do a 5-pointed star or could I do this? Use string? I'm not at all crafty but why let that stop me!

TheYamiOfYawn Thu 24-Oct-13 20:01:12

I am now all stocked up with brown paper, red and white twine, gingham ribbon, luggage tags and gold pens. I need to get some tissue paper for the stockings and get a couple of bits of coloured wrapping paper. At the moment I am liking the M&S London paper and the Waitrose essential red and white rolls, but I am waiting to see what Aldi have before I buy anything.

Half term, DD's birthday and Halloween next week, and then I get to start dedicating more time to poncing. I will start by getting the advent stuff completely ready and then finish the present shopping before I start on the cards.

TyrannosaurusBex Thu 24-Oct-13 22:24:55

I do Ruby, I keep roaming the house eyeing the lampshades speculatively grin, charity shops are definitely the way to go. Might have to do the rounds this weekend and see what's available!

Fraggle3112 Fri 25-Oct-13 08:10:12

I'm new to this and not v crafty by nature but hoping to et some help and advice from joining this thread! I'm reading through the full thread but haven't got through it all yet so sorry if this has already been asked but when is the best time to pick sloes for sloe gin? Am I too late? My nana used to say after the first frost which I don't think we've had yet but it seems late? I'm sure she used to start her gin around end of sept? TIA grin

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 25-Oct-13 09:43:31

Fraggle there might be some left, depending where you are in the country. The further north the more likely you'll still get some. Someone on here told me instead of waiting on the frost just out them in the freezer and then take them out to use.

Rubybrazilianwax Fri 25-Oct-13 09:47:00

waitingforme are your branches willow? A star would be easy to do. You could use wire or string for the joins and then cover with raffia? I made one using the big long cinnamon sticks, just made 2 triangles first and then turned one upside down. If you are going to try a wreath I think they advise soaking the branches (if they are willow) in water for a day first to make them more pliable.

Fraggle, pick your sloes whenever you like- wash them and freeze. Works the same as a frost! Plus it means you can do the gin whenever you get the mood and not in a rush...

TyrannosaurusBex Fri 25-Oct-13 12:07:39

Just strained my Christmas pudding vodka, it tastes amaaaaaaazing! [scans food and drink bargain thread looking for deals on more vodka]

Fraggle3112 Fri 25-Oct-13 19:04:38

Thanks for the tip on freezing rubybrazilliianwax and screamsinthenight we're pretty far north and there's loads of sloes just up the road so I'll go for a walk and see if I can get some tomorrow!

Snowgirl1 Fri 25-Oct-13 21:48:19

Where can I find the recipe for Christmas pudding vodka please? I bought 2 bottles of cheap vodka a couple of weeks ago with the intention of doing something poncetastic with it.

Has anyone got a recipe of recipes for black currant vodka? I've got a bag in the freezer from earlier this year that need using up

TyrannosaurusBex Sat 26-Oct-13 16:28:32

snowgirl I Used this one from BBC Recipes.

300g mixed dried fruit
75g caster sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
2tsp ground mixed spice
6 cloves
Half a nutmeg, finely grated
Zest of 1 orange
Zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
750ml vodka

Mix ingredients in a large bowl, pour in vodka. Cover with cling film and fridge for 3 days, stir daily.line a sieve with a double layer of muslin, place over a jug, pour the mixture into the sieve and allow it to drip into the jug.

Mmmmmm...

Snowgirl1 Sat 26-Oct-13 21:34:19

Thanks TyrannosaurusBex, sounds lush. Does it really only take 3 days to 'brew'? I was worried I wouldn't have long enough before Christmas!

Do you just soak the labels off the original vodka bottles and put the Christmas pudding vodka back into them?

Reprint Sat 26-Oct-13 21:38:34

Shamelessly place marking

Reprint Sat 26-Oct-13 21:43:22

waitingforme ....there is a fairly good guide HERE to making willow decs. smile

TyrannosaurusBex Sat 26-Oct-13 21:57:31

Yep Snowgirl only three days until you can drink it bottle it! I put mine in small glass juice bottles that my DDs buy from a nearby cafe, the slightly annoying thing is that from 750ml of neat vodka you only get about 550ml of flavoured vodka because the dried fruit soaks up so much booze, so the original bottles don't 'fit'. Still, putting it in small bottles makes it go further as presents. smile

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Sun 27-Oct-13 10:24:02

Thank you for the stocking hanging and decorating suggestions. Someone is having the same problem as me and started THIS.

Rubybrazilianwax linked to a couple of things on Pinterest that have given me an idea. I think I will get two little suction cups with hooks attached to stick to the window frame, and then slide a poncestatic branch decorated with tasteful ribbon and maybe some greenery between the holders to hang stocking from. So a cross between THIS and THIS.

Christmas cake is in the oven as I type. Fingers crossed it works out. I have never made a fruit cake before, let alone a Christmas cake.

Has anyone ever made Nigella's Paradise Chutney from How to be a Domestic Goddess (recipe)? I'm thinking that I need to expand my chutney repertoire beyond Mary Berry's Christmas chutney.

Snowgirl1 Mon 28-Oct-13 22:41:31

TyrannosaurusBex, thanks for the warning about needing smaller bottles. The Christmas pud vodka is brewing and I've found a couple of 500ml Fevertree Ginger Beer bottles which should do the job. So I get bottles for the vodka and DH happy as he loves ginger beer. Is there anything you can do with all that lovely boozy soaked fruit???

Snowgirl1 Mon 28-Oct-13 22:50:06

How are people planning to decorate their Christmas cakes? I'm thinking of this but I love this one but might leave that one until DD is a bit older (she'll only be 2 just after Christmas)

Reprint Tue 29-Oct-13 07:25:02

That is cute!
I make several cakes for other people and the most popular finishes have been 1) covering the whole thing in lace effect squiggle piping (like this and then adding a red ribbon like this
Easy to do, looks just like a wrapped present!
and 2) flat icing the cake, make a largish circle in the centre and dust it with the very faintest coloured green caster sugar (it shouldn't look 'green' just the slightest greeny twinkle). In the middle of the circle create a pile of white sugar paste pine cones, leaves, small christmas roses and some royal icing 'twigs'.
Sorry I can't find a picture, but the idea came from a magazine donkeys years ago, and I can't find an image like it on t'interweb.
Looks seriously stylish when done though.

IcedTeaOneSugar Wed 30-Oct-13 10:54:19

foxtrot I highly recommend the apple cider chutney on the bbc site, by far the nicest Chutney I've ever tasted either bought or home made, went down well as presents.

giraffeseatpineapples Wed 30-Oct-13 20:17:06

Can I join in too please! I usually make a christmas wreath with bits from my dad's garden, christmas biscuits and gingerbread house from scratch with dc and dodgey cut out snowflakes and paperchains but looking forward to catching up with the thread and getting far more poncetastic and organised this year grin flowers

Barbeasty Thu 31-Oct-13 08:14:26

The other year to decorate the cake I got red and green icing, dusted the green with edible glitter, cut Christmas trees out of the red and then filled the holes with the glittery green trees. Covered the cake with this so it looked like wrapping paper and then put a ribbon over it to "tie it".

Lakeland are selling a book of decorating christmas cakes (which I think MIL might have bought me for christmas this year).

I got the sleigh mould from Lakeland yesterday, instead of the gingerbread house one. I might need to practice a bit.

TyrannosaurusBex Fri 01-Nov-13 04:35:44

Can I just say...IT'S NOVEMBER!! I consider this to to officially be The Festive Season. [goes back to sleep]

Valdeeves Fri 01-Nov-13 10:29:15

Guys anyone found any nice Xmas day or Xmas eve outfits?

ShoeJunkie Mon 04-Nov-13 14:44:22

Have almost finished knitting 24 little stockings for an advent calendar. 19 at the last count.
Hoarding interesting shaped jam jars for a candle arrangement - thanks Pinterest!
Worried that I've left it a bit late for my slow gin though confused

Valdeeves Mon 04-Nov-13 23:51:03

Link the candle arrangements??

WaitingForMe Thu 07-Nov-13 20:13:02

Thank you Ruby and Reprint!

I made a massive short-cut this year. In 2011 I started making decorations for our staircase whilst we renovated. Last year I bought lots of fake-pine garland and wrapped it around with fairy lights with a newborn. This year I wanted to pull it all together... I bought a £3.99 felt advent garland from Lidl. I feel so dirty blush

But there will be greenery and lights and 24 numbered things and a dozen mini stockings and a dozen mini boxes with a toddler!

ShoeJunkie Thu 07-Nov-13 22:34:01

Val the candle arrangements are from this blog

somanymiles Fri 08-Nov-13 14:59:40

after an hour of faffing around with greaseproof paper and an old cotton pillow case my 3 christmas puddings are now merrily bubbling away. does such a thing as a pudding cloth as referred to by Delia actually exist? and where would I buy one, assuming that next year I have another poncetastic Christmas? the pillow case was clean, but somehow unappetising.

somanymiles Fri 08-Nov-13 15:04:54

waitingforme the last time I made a wreath I bent a wire coat hanger into a circle and attached pine fronds to it. I can't actually remember how, but I'm guessing twine, or maybe I just curled them round and it held? then I used a glue gun to add pine cones etc as decoration.

somanymiles Fri 08-Nov-13 15:07:30

shoejunkie can you show me a picture of your finished advent calendar? DS is 2 and I haven't got round to making his yet.blush

ShoeJunkie Sat 09-Nov-13 17:05:56

somany I will as soon as it's finished! grin

IsaacCox Sun 10-Nov-13 18:35:23

I took a bit of a break from MN and actually got some stuff done shock grin. I now have many many jars of food. Mincemeat, mango chutney, Mary Berry's Christmas chutney, Nigella's sweet chilli jam (one jar may already be gone blush) Raspberry and champagne jam (and don't forget the glitter! grin) And lastly, I picked around 2lb of green grapes from the garden a few days ago and made grape jam.

To finish the jars I cut out circles of brown parcel paper and tied it with string over the lids and added a label with naice writing on.

I've also made loads of paper snowflakes to put on presents. Plus, I've made all my Christmas cards.

Still to do (closer to Christmas)-

This star Christmas tree biscuit thing (technical term grin. Going to wrap in cellophane with a nice bow

Make biscuit wreaths with holly shaped cutters

Chocolates with this mould. Going to do different flavours like baileys, ones with freeze dried strawberries in etc.

Chocolate spoons for hot choc I think? spoon mould here

Gingerbread house if I have time

Mince pies

Biscotti

Ice the cakes

Spiced nuts into jars

and hopefully finally turning spare Christmas cake into balls, dipped in milk/dark chocolate then decorated with white chocolate

Oh yeah and I've to wrap all the presents all poncy grin

Phew! Sorry for the long post! (I may try to get photos onto pinterest of some of the stuff at a later date)

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 10-Nov-13 18:46:30

Issac I was thinking of doing shortbread trees for gifts. Do you think they would stay assembled wrapped in celephane? If it was wrapped carefully enough and then set inside a gift bag?

IsaacCox Sun 10-Nov-13 18:49:57

I should think so. If the cellophane is pretty tight it should stay together I'd have thought? I hope so anyway grin

Barbeasty Sun 10-Nov-13 20:52:07

Issac where did you get the recipe for grape jam? I've not got 2lb, but we do have our first crop. I was thinking of making a gooseberry relish, but substituting the grapes, but jam sounds good.

And if DH was to get me one Christmas book for our anniversary, which is best? I like the look of the Mary Berry one, but Nigella looks good- except I really didn't like the gingerbread stuffing when I tried it last year, and it put me off a bit.

TheYamiOfYawn Sun 10-Nov-13 21:06:36

I have got almost all of the books for a book Advent calendar, but I still have to wrap and number the books.

On Tuesday I will get some fabric for making covered notebooks and some tree bunting. I might also make done general decorative bunting, although I saw some nice cheap felt garlands in Waitrose so I might just buy one.

This isn't really poncetastic, but I noticed that The Woodland Trust have lots and lots of free resources for outdoor winter fun which is very handy for those of us who love the idea of going out for family walks in wintery forests but find the reality usually involves bored crying children.

Just remarking my place. Now I'm back from my 'summer' holiday and two of the dcs birthdays are out of the way, I'm going to be poncing in ernest.

I'm making some napkins and rings for my table this week and my cards are about 50% done so I'll finish those as well.

ShoeJunkie Mon 11-Nov-13 15:49:09

Phew! I was getting seriously worried that I'd killed the poncetastic thread! blush

RosieBloom32 Mon 11-Nov-13 16:24:05

I'm guessing you don't work Issac grin

Rubybrazilianwax Mon 11-Nov-13 23:04:45

Ok, I think I will give those start shortbread trees a go then. I have to say I love shaking up my sloe gin and seeing how it comes along!
So far I have
-made sloe gin
-blackberry vodka
-chutney
-dried and scented all my pinecones (in hotpress) have ordered cellophane bags and naice luggage labels and string.
-crocheted few hat and scarf gifts and am starting on crocheted tree decs.
-picked red dogwood branches for artistic floristy creations grin

WaitingForMe Tue 12-Nov-13 09:01:07

I made two Christmas cakes at the weekend. Black cake (Nigella's Domestic Goddess) with fruit I'd been soaking for 6 weeks and homemade vanilla extract and Golden cake (Nigella's Christmas) with my honey spiced rum (made in July) instead of white rum. I felt utterly poncetastic using homemade ingredients. DH accused me of emotional abuse when I wrapped them up and wouldn't let him start one grin

I've got seven different wrapping papers this year. Each child has their own, one for adults and one for stockings. One for boys and one for girls for table presents. I started wrapping last week and two hours later was about 50% through without any tags or embellishments done! So glad I started early. Everything is red, free and natural (brown paper, string) except for Santa who is going for purple, silver and black. It'll be lovely but I copied the poster who was printing luggage tags and I have stamps, ink and am starting to realise what a big project this is!

Rubybrazilianwax Thu 14-Nov-13 12:09:19

waitingforme your wrapping sounds epic! (As my dc would say) it will be worth all the effort in the end!

leesmum Thu 14-Nov-13 17:55:32

Im wanting to re-do my wreath and garland for over my front door and need some red and white ribbon, can any of you lovely ladies point me in the right direction for a good online shop, I don't really want to be paying £££'s for delivery when I only really want a couple of metres to make into bows, thanks smile

Bumping for 2kidsintow

2kidsintow Sat 16-Nov-13 19:42:26

Thankyou.
I have a feeling I'm going to have to make my Christmas cakes from scratch this year, so that will be tomorrow's job. For the last couple of years I've made them using the Mary Berry box kits from Tesco. And have usually then made another set in the new year (one for us and one for my fruit-cake loving Dad) using kits that were reduced to about £3 after Christmas.
No kits around, so now searching for a trustworthy cake recipe.

WaitingForMe Sat 16-Nov-13 20:26:41

I ordered Kirstie's Christmas book. It is the most absurd thing I have ever read. It would be a full time job if you made and wrapped gifts the way she seems to think is possible!

Lovely stuff but bonkers even by my standard!

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 17-Nov-13 10:06:23

I have always been a wee bit disappointed by Kirsty's books. They look pretty but don't tell you anything you can't find on Pinterest now. leesmum eBay is always a good bet for ribbon I find

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 17-Nov-13 10:07:28

Had a sniff of my pinecones in cinnamon oil in the hot press and they smell fab. [happy]

OwlBeThereForYou Thu 21-Nov-13 09:38:30

Still trying to sort out what I want to do for our wreath, more fresh holly and foliage or more ribbon and decorations. Need to sort that soon! Getting the fruit soaking started today ready for stir up Sunday...I know you could really start them a lot sooner for maturing, but I can't help but love having a traditional day for baking!
Also started writing Christmas cards, determined to have them posted ready for the beginning of December

WaitingForMe Tue 26-Nov-13 15:35:08

This year doesn't feel very poncy! We could do with a project like they have in S&B and in the diet forums.

Something like a craft, a bake and a buy for each of the next four weekends?

MooseyMoo Tue 26-Nov-13 16:34:29

Ooh ruby that sounds lovely. Silly question... What's a hot press? I think I will try scenting some pinecones

I've made:

Limoncello
Never Ending Vanilla Essence
Pickled onions
Mincemeat (Delia's receipe)

TheFutureSupremeRulersMum Thu 28-Nov-13 05:58:59

bumping for CakeisyourFriend

CakeIsyourFriend Thu 28-Nov-13 06:50:05

Bless you supremerulersmum! I am only a quarter of the way into the thread and I've already had to stop reading long enough to place an ocado order with the extra ingredients I need for homemade mincemeat grin

DoubleLifeIsALifeOfSorts Thu 28-Nov-13 08:49:40

I am waiting for felting needlIng equipment to come in the post, I thought I'd try and make some cute little characters for stockings. Originally I was searching for a way to make the Pontipines from ITNG as you can't buy them, but I've realised that I'll never get it done before Christmas as there are so many of the little blighters.

DoubleLifeIsALifeOfSorts Thu 28-Nov-13 08:51:06

Hot press = airing cupboard btw, usually said by those living in Ireland smile I think it sounds nice but makes me think of ironing rather than airing!

MooseyMoo Thu 28-Nov-13 10:58:15

Thanks * Double*. Thought it sounded like they were being ironed too!

CakeIsyourFriend Thu 28-Nov-13 19:57:13

Ok, you poncetastic ladies, a question for you.

How long do you reckon this will last...

Christmas decoration

WaitingForMe Sat 30-Nov-13 17:56:14

2-3 days?

I had an epic day. I did a Christmas craft workshop and made a wreath and a centrepiece (will just replace the greenery as needed. They look amazing if I do say so myself.

First party is tomorrow and I just pulled a golden cake out of the freezer to defrost. So effortless wink

I'm very on the ball with organisation this year but can't shake the feeling I'm missing something really obvious. Hmm...

CakeIsyourFriend Sat 30-Nov-13 19:10:25

I've just made homemade mincemeat for the first time. I am dubious about the amount of suet in it. We shall see...

Impressed with the poncestastic day waiting smile

Rubybrazilianwax Sat 30-Nov-13 20:14:00

Ponceyness is definitely lulled a bit! But quite a bit of my ponceyness will be my decorating and wrapping/general gift assembly.
I have taken a notion to make some sort of cake stand something like these , for the kitchen table.
Waitingforme, pick a tin of gloss spray up in a florists and it will keep your greenery looking lush

WaitingForMe Sat 30-Nov-13 21:36:58

Thanks for the tip Ruby!

This evening I wrapped my (fake) foliage up the stair banister and added lights, baubles, homemade decorations and an advent garland. Looks lovely.

Then I completely stripped the tree I decorated last night because the bulbs died and DH has bought more. Can't face adding new lights and am getting a bit bored of it all. I suppose it's a good thing we're having the party, otherwise I'd probably let it drag for a week.

Looking forward would it be mad to try and make my own cheese and crackers for Christmas? I have the Lakeland cheese book but have never tried it before.

Rubybrazilianwax Sun 01-Dec-13 09:37:52

Making your own cheese does sound like the very extremes of poncetasticness! grin I wouldnt know where to start myself but you might as well give it a go

HerrenaHarridan Wed 18-Dec-13 22:03:09

How's everyone's poncetastic Christmas preparations going?

I'm currently wrapping presents and making cranberry sauce smile

HerrenaHarridan Wed 18-Dec-13 22:05:19

And simmering my red cabbage smile

HerrenaHarridan Wed 18-Dec-13 22:41:53

Oh and my favourite poncetastic idea this year is... Printing pictures of dd (2yo) to stick on gift tags so she can recognise her own presents smile

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