Celia Hart's blog about what's going on in and around her studio.
Art, printmaking, inspirations, gardening, vegetables, hens, landscapes, wild flowers, East Anglia, adventure, travel.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

A village Christmas

Let's have another dip into PPP's bag of Winter Mixture . . .

A Christmas wreath
This is the wreath I made from the evergreens
cut from our garden. Pushed into a twisted cane ring
we've used for years and embellished with gilded
pine cones and ribbons saved from chocolate boxes.
Cost: nothing!

We've put up the decorations -
Straw stars sent from a friend in Prague,
ceramic stars and hearts from a local potter,
little tin doves and glass drops,
wooden soldiers and some lovely
Ukrainian dolls.

The Village Church
"All for the Carol Service" reads the Church Flower Rota,
more evergreens from our garden, plus a few sprigs
of Honesty seed heads and some twirly gilded split canes
and the job's done.

Time to lend a hand decorating the Church's tree . . .

and spiral garlands round the ancient stone pillars . . .

pillars which are scratched with graffiti from the
time of the English Civil War.

Carol Singing
We regaled the pub with 'While Shepherds Watched'
and in return received a pile of loose change
and a humbug each!

We sang 'Once in Royal David's City' to a baby and his
nan at a bedroom window;
and 'The Holly and the Ivy' to the tree surgeon.

Have you ever noticed that thatched cottages don't
have gutters? The water just drips off the overhanging
thatch - and if it's a tad nippy, the water freezes
making the most enormous icicles!

A cosy fire
After two hours singing carols in sub-zero temperatures
and trudging through the snow covered lanes,
there's nothing like a real fire to warm our
hands and toes.

Mulled wine and mince pies
Of course!
And spicy hot apple juice and cheese straws
to tuck into.

While our socks and the fivers and tenners
dried out in front of the fire!

Now we can count the donations
in the festive collecting bucket . . .

and relax and laugh with good friends.

That dip into PPP's Winter Mixture has really got me into the Christmas spirit - hope you're feeling festive too. I'll be back soon to have another rummage in my brown paper bag of Yuletide delights.


  1. I suppose the humbugs from the pub were "BAR humbugs" (Sorry!)
    No, really, this is how I think of a traditional celebration.Just not the same with gum leaves and bikinis.

  2. Lovely. Merry Christmas, Celia!

  3. Celia, thanks to you for sharing these glimpses of how Christmas arrives in your village.

    The greenery at your home and in the church is perfect for this season.

    Reading about the stops your carolling group made was also wonderful. Wish that our giant city of New York somehow had room for these traditions.

    The picture of the refreshments that awaited those carollers really put me through the threshhold of this Christmas time. Many thanks. xo

  4. It all sounds - and looks - very much like our own little village - right down to the church decorations. I was there a couple of days ago doing the windowsills and up one side of the chancel arch and our candle-lit carol service took place last night. Very traditionally English and very lovely.

  5. It looks exactly the way Christmas is meant to be - very lovely indeed.

  6. the pine swag on the staircase (?) is lovely--just wouldn't last with my cats in it! graffiti from the civil war just amazes me that it is there. caroling isn't done much around here...thanks for the photos & the rundown. happy solstice

  7. Your post has made me feel very Christmassy. Lovely!

  8. lovely Christmassy post, carol singing in the snow, wonderful!
    Merry christmas Celia.

  9. Oh that's all so festive, it's really got me in the mood! I'm off to Rouen for Christmas with my grandsons. I look forweard to reading more when I get home. Have a wonderful Christmas. Penny x

  10. Lovely! Merry Christmas Celia, all the best for 2010

    David x

  11. What a beautiful Village Christmas!! Wow! Your wreath and other evergreen arangement are both just amazing. It looks like you had a wonderful time out caroling. And such lovely company!

  12. Hi Dinahmow - called at the pub too early in the evening, oh well!

    Merry Christmas Annie!

    Hi Frances - I pleased to spread a little of our Suffolk Christmas to New York :-)

    Hi Veg Heaven - quiet village traditions seem to go on un-noticed by many but loved by everyone involved.

    Hi Dottycookie - these are the ways to forget the retail fest going on in the high street.

    Hi Petoskystone - the swag is high in the rafters of a coverted stable which is now part of our house - luckily the studio assistants have grown out of mountaineering!

    Hi Gina - I think the snow put us all into a traditional Christmas mood!

    Hi Jamjar - Carols in the snow make you appreciate a fire and mulled wine even more ;-)

    Hi Penny - Wishing you Joyeux Noel.

    Hi David - Wishing you a good 2010 too!

    Hi Dowhatyoulove - thank you and Happy New Year!



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