With so many things going on these days it might be quite hard to put oneself in a festive mood. It seems even harder to write a light and cheerful post about it.
But surprisingly, this year, I've already managed to go through my Christmas-do-list; something that has never happened before. There are of course bits and pieces to finish but I think it would be quite safe to say that I am ready to celebrate.
I have already encouraged you to try out some of Pick up Limes comfort food recipes. However, there seems to be one more that has really stolen my heart. It's for mulled apple cider which fills your house with Christmas aroma and pampers your soul with its vibrant colours. I put the recipe below; in the video it starts at 05:22
8 cups (2 L) apple cider or apple juice
1 orange, thinly sliced
6 cardamom pods, cracked
4 cinnamon sticks
3 whole cloves
1/2 cup fresh cranberries
2cm/1-inch piece ginger, thinly sliced
Place all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil over high heat.
Reduce heat to a simmer, partially cover and let infuse for 20-30 minutes.
If you have never read or seen this a great opportunity to get to know this classic tale by Charles Dickens. It'd been almost a compulsory reading in every house before the TV era. I definitely encourage you to read it but if finding the book might sound like a daunting task, I am sharing you the youtube version from 1970.
Another classic story that would be good to read this festive season is "Little Women". It's a bitter-sweet experience- just as Louisa May Alcott's like might have been as the story is an autobiographical account of her life. There's the latest version from 2019, I believe but I am sharing the one from 1994, which I think is a gem of a movie.
the Nativity story
This video is 17 minutes long. It made me laugh and it made me cry.
A beautifully told story of Jesus birth. Nothing more to add. A must-watch.
And since I am sharing the video I also think it would be good to share the source
Let's have a look at the story as it is written in the Holy Bible.
Every year I try to choose a different passage to read before Christmas Eve supper; here I am going to quote the most common one from the Gospel of Luke.
The Birth of Jesus
At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) All returned to their own ancestral towns to register for this census. And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. He took with him Mary, to whom he was engaged, who was now expecting a child.
And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.
The Shepherds and Angels
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.
A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS
Written by Agnieszka Kansy