Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Preparations

It is of course that time of year when there are lots of preparations going on all around the world for different things.  Christmas, thanksgivings, the changes in seasons.  So many things to prepare for.

I have been sadly lacking in the preparation department - there are still Halloween pumpkins sitting on the doorstep!  A few presents have been bought - because I happened to see them - and I dragged all of my Christmas craft kits out that I hadn't made up before last Christmas and I am working on some of them in the hope that I will get them finished to use this year perhaps.




If you had asked me a month ago, I would have said that I was pretty organised for Christmas because I thought I knew what I was doing.  Since then my plans have been tossed in the air and thrown about and landed in a big mess, so I don't really know what we will be doing which is making preparing rather hard.

I thought that I would be safe making Christmas cake though as that will get eaten at some point no matter what.  Having looked back on my blog I see that last year I was rather earlier making Christmas cake, so not only would I be safe making it, I really needed to get on and get it made soon!  So I turned to Delia yesterday and went shopping for the fruit and put it into soak for a few days with some booze!


You might notice that there are two large bowls of fruit soaking.  That is because I am contingency planning and making two cakes so that if my original plans work out there will be a cake in the right place and if the plans that have been thrown at me happen I will also have a cake in the right place.


Although I cannot control what is happening I can control the cake!!!!  It feels good to be able to do one thing at least.


I will bake the cakes later this week or at the weekend and will then wrap them up in greaseproof paper and foil and tie them with string and open then up once a week to be speared with a skewer and they will be fed some more booze!  After that it will be time for marzipan and icing and decorations.  I better come up with a design hadn't I.

What preparations are you making?

Amy

62 comments:

  1. Good on you making cakes, nothing like the homemade ones, I used to love my Aunty's cakes, even the Christmas Pud. Now it's putting up with shop made ones. Mind you I picked up two huge ones from Tesco@s the other day for a tenner.

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  2. Morning Friend
    Oh how utterly adorable!!
    And Christmas. Cake..
    What very good day.
    Woolie Hugs

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  3. Ah, the glistening fruit of a Christmas Cake, Amy you are getting me in the mood for festive cookery too. Your little reindeers are the cutest crafts, I hope we see more of them! My effort to date has been to raise the Christmas tree for decoration by the 5 year old Australian grandson, and to purchase the gifts to send off to Canada to the other two little boys. I actually enjoy shopping for gifts. Hang in there Amy, xoxox

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  4. I surprised myself and baked two Christmas cakes early in October. I always make two but I'm usually later - closer to Christmas - when I actually make them. I use a traditional recipe for one of the cakes and for the other I use different fruits like dried pineapple, mango, coconut - just whatever takes my fancy. I call it my tropical Christmas cake and it is always well received! I've been making Christmas decorations and also some gifts. I'm now beginning to panic as I don't think I will have anywhere near enough decorations to decorate a tree - my plan for this year. Oh well, I will keep trying.

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  5. To be truthful I am missing not making a cake this year, my daughter is making one as a gift she thought I would be too busy to do one. I am busy wrapping gifts.

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  6. It's hard to make preparations when you don't know what you'll be doing, but I think you feel better if there's something at least that you can control, like your cakes. We don't have Christmas cake, Christmas pudding or mince pies as none of us like them.

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  7. You are organised. I used to make Christmas cakes and had done so for about 25 years when my sons decided to tell me that actually they are not that keen on Christmas cake, Why do I make it then I asked and their reply was Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without one. Needless to say now they are adults I don't bother as there are only so many slices I can consume.

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  8. The first thing on my preparation list this time of year is defrost the freezer and use up those odds and ends to make room for other stuff! Those felt reindeer are so cute. I love Christmas cake, my aunty is kindly making one for me this year as they're coming to ours. Don't forget to make a wish when you stir the mixture, Amy! xx

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  9. I'm debating whether to make a cake or not this year, as you say they always get eaten & I think I would miss not making one. I tend to make mine on stir up Sunday instead of a pudding. For the first time in a long,long while we are having a quiet Christmas so no huge preparation needed this year & as the kids are older I am treating myself to two weeks off work prior to Christmas day & filling it with books & knitting. Take care xx

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  10. I've already made 40 Christmas cards for an exchange and I still have more to make for my regular list. I shopped yesterday for baking supplies and although I do make Christmas cake, no booze in ours. :-) I've never put marzipan icing on my cake, do you make your own Amy or purchase it?
    Your little reindeers are cute, I can imagine them dangling from a hostess gift of home baked goodies.

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  11. Does a mild air of panic count as preparations?! I'm currently at the 'flicking through magazines' stage... we plan for a quiet Christmas this year but will be going to a craft fair or two and taking a trip to do some festive gift buying. Not too near the Big Day though!
    I may dip my toe into the water by attempting to dry out some orange slices. Hardly radical but never mind!
    S x

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  12. Ooh I love preparing for Christmas, I've been making a pompom garland this weekand I started buying presents last month, luckily we are away for the big day this year so no food to gather! Your decorations look fab! And good luck with your Christmas Cakes! x

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  13. Amy, you are way ahead of me! I've made no preparations for Christmas as yet, except for those items that I have bought all year long. I need to get them out to see what I have, then make my list for missing items. Each year after Christmas it's a great time to go to the stores for the bargain stuff and keep for next year.

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  14. Always so helpful to feel like we can control something when the rest of our world is spinning. Booze, booze and more booze and icing! Now that sounds like a good plan. I hope you have an enjoyable rest of the week.

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  15. Amy, Wow they look good, I am also in the process of soaking my fruit and about to start on puddings, and have about 6 million task on the go, and time is getting away from mex

    http://michellemakeandbake.blogspot.co.uk

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  16. Hi, The felt ornaments are very sweet. I know your cakes will be delicious and moist.
    When my parents were still alive, I baked and decorated and all the family would visit for the holidays. These days, it is just my husband and I, so we usually just eat out and I gifted my decorations to a special family. Holidays are stress free!

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  17. I'm sure your Christmas cakes will be delicious. I don't make them at all but remember eating them (probably boughten) when growing up with a touch of flaming brandy and rum sauce. Yum. We put up a few Christmas lights yesterday and I have bought a very few gifts at this point. I am usually starting to decorate the day after Remembrance Day but can't seem to get into it yet. Your homemade ornaments are so cute! Blessings. Pam

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  18. Your ornaments are adorable. I've started one and it's been sitting for 2 weeks now, probably finish it next year. I have wrapped a few presents, that's so I can get into my closet.

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  19. No matter how early I start with preperations, the last months of the year run away from me! I love the festive season .. From baking to making gifts to looking for that something special for my dear hubby! Love you felt ornaments, one of my favourite passtimes :) Pat x

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  20. I've decided I'm not making a cake this year, if I make it I eat it and pretty much half of it as DH eats it but none of the kids so we both end up scoffing it within a couple of day. If I don't have one I can't eat it. I have however drank the cherry brandy which was to go in the cake ;) x

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  21. Gosh I haven't even started to think about getting organized ! I love your reindeer ornaments and your cakes will be delicious! I love fruitcake especially with tea and my knitting! Have a great week!

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  22. Well done for organising your cakes, I'm sure they will be yummy. Nobody likes the fruit cake so there is no point but I did make sweet mincemeat last year which was a hit. We cannot have orange or apricots so unless I make it, we don't get. Love your sweet ornaments you certainly are further along them me! take care xcx

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  23. At least you had a Halloween pumpkin! That is more than we managed. I like your little reindeers, they are cute. Are they for your tree? I wanted to start on my Christmas cake but there were no cranberries in the shops. I use these instead of something else but I can't quite remember what.... have a lovely rest of the week. x

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  24. I love your felt decorations !!! Those reindeer are soooo cute - hope you don't mind if I copy them...
    And hmmm yummy English Christmas cake... I think I'll give it a try this year, making one... I'll have plenty of time in January to continue with my diet ;-)))

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  25. I've been knitting cowls for presents but haven't done much of anything else. I do very little baking, just some cookies.

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  26. I dont make Christmas cake just a Cherry and Almond one, we much prefer it. I am hoping that this time next week I will be finished with gifts and any food that can be frozen. I just cant cope with busy shops. X

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  27. I don't make my cake that far in advance - but like you I feed it copious qauntities of booze one it is baked! I hope to make some pressies - but I hope that every year!

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  28. Hi Amy,

    The decorations you made look lovely! Pumpkins still in my house as well :-) Hope you Christmas cake turned out fine.

    Have a lovely evening!

    Madelief x

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  29. I'm going to make a fruitcake this year. Also getting some red and white yard to make a few dish cloths to add to gift baskets. Decorations will be a lot less this year, now that we are in an apartment. Some rules about hanging things on the balcony, but it will look festive, I'm sure.

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  30. I'm not fond of Christmas cake but I used to make it for Douglas. He's told me not to bother as he's usually still eating it in February - for his birthday! It's a shame, though, as I enjoyed making it - all that stirring of fruit and poking and adding booze was fun!

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  31. I always make my Christmas cake and the boozer the better! I must admit I'm a bit late this year too but no worries, it'll get done. Hope your plans are all that you wish them to be. Enjoy your cake. P x

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  32. Really sweet decorations. I like to hold my nerve for as long as possible before I plunge into the frenzy of Christmas. So in answer to your question, I've not done anything yet, except order a handful of books for the boys. I shan't start panicking until December at least. Probably. Well maybe late November. At the earliest. CJ xx

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  33. Love making Christmas cakes and puddings too, really need to get started so I have lots of time to feed the cakes with alcohol, mmmmmm X

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  34. That's great that you're getting organised with your Christmas decorations and cake making. I haven't even started
    thinking about it all, but I'm sure everything will get done when I get in the mood with a little help from a grand daughter who loves preparing for the season.

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  35. Great idea to make two. I also have made my cake and it was Delia. Soaking weekly in alcohol as well. Managed to make the Christmad pudding last week end also. Have so far made an advent cakender, about to make a second and have various items painted red for a Christmas blog post in December. I am aiming to post every day in December as I did last year. It was a big thing to do and a big ask for this year but I am going to try. Think of you daily Amy. Sending love x

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  36. HI Amy.....
    Cute Ornies...not much for fruit cake, but I am sure yours is delicious!
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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  37. Im ahead in the shopping. For once! really ahead. I don't have any knit gift planned. We'll see...
    I may knit everyone a mitten ornament

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  38. I love those reindeer decorations, they are really cute. my girls want me to make them one each now. I'm sure your christmas cake will be yum.

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  39. If it makes you feel any better, I don't what my family are doing for Christmas either. Waiting on the in-laws to decide, so we know, is rather frustrating. I haven't made/started or even thought a bout a cake also.

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  40. The decorations are just so cute and that fruit already looks yummy for the cakes. I must admit to not being organised at all this year, but really should get myself into gear. Take care.

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  41. I have bought a few presents in passing and filled up the advent calendar with chocolates. In the meantime there are three birthdays to get through so Christmas will have to wait until December.

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  42. I haven't really had time to think about Christmas yet Amy like you I have a few things bought because I happened upon them but that's it really, I will be making a cake but as yet have not even gathered the ingredients a must do for this weekend, I usually start to think seriously about Christmas after my birthday which is next week. I love your little decorations they are really cute. :) xx

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  43. two cakes. that's brilliant. I have no excuse for making two cakes but I might anyway.....

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  44. Hi Amy! Oh, I feel right at home with what's going on with you except I don't have any preparations for some yummy cakes! I can't believe Christmas is around the corner, can you? With our move, I'm just so behind on everything and am wondering if I'll ever get a handle on organization again! :)
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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  45. I've just started to think about Christmas and actually bought some cards yesterday. I think we have the ingredients for a pudding which I'll make next week and then think about a cake. Presents - no idea! I'm still looking for inspiration but we only have a few to buy - I did buy some felt robins and a decorated candle from Ikea a couple of weeks ago but I've no idea where I've put them since we decorated the kitchen. Oh well!:)

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  46. You're doing a lot better than me, that's for sure! I haven't even begun to think about Christmas yet! Your cakes sound like they will be delicious.

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  47. Love the little reindeer and hope that your cakes turn out well. I haven't started yet but I need to get a move on as Christmas will creep up on me! I like to make my cake, mincemeat and puddings too as my daughter is allergic to nuts, which seem to appear in most shop bought Christmas cakes, etc., so I can just leave them out. Have a good weekend Amy xx

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  48. My cake is made and steadily getting drunk....the presents are being bought and arriving in the post....last year (as per my blog post) was a bit of a fail for me so I'm trying to be on it this year. But to be honest, there's always going to be a moment of 'I forgot so-and-so...' somewhere! I love your ornaments, very lovely! Lil xx

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  49. What has caught my eyes are your Pyrex bowls. We had a set of these given to us for our wedding in 1964!!! Yes, 50 years ago (we celebrated our Golden Wedding last month.) My goodness, they take me back ... sadly we no longer have them, broken along with many other things! Now, of course, they're popular with young women as they are Very Retro!
    But what is Retro is my Christmas Cake recipe. In the 1960s there was a magazine part-work called The Cordon Bleu Cookery Course. I bought these from the first issue, but after a while got fed up with it, a cook book would've had more recipes and would've been cheaper! However, I kept the one with the Christmas cake recipe and have used it every year since then! It's idiot proof and totally delicious.
    But I've not started buying presents yet.
    Margaret P

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  50. It feels good to have some control over something and if it is cake than so be it. Love your decorations.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  51. Those reindeers are adorable!!! I LOVE THEM!!! I would love to make some for my tree! And there is just something so special about the custom you all have with your Christmas cakes! It is so fantastic and so neat to learn more about as they are not as common here. Looking forward to seeing more and I too have pumpkins out front still! Kind of that strange time before Thanksgiving where we should have pumpkins out but feel the need to start preparations for Christmas...all a bit confusing in the organization process if you ask me! Have a lovely weekend dear friend! Nicole xoxo

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  52. You are well ahead of me with your preparations. Goodness knows when I'll get a cake made and I haven't a clue what we'll be doing.

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  53. Well done for getting on with your Christmas cake making, sounds good and boozy and I'm sure will taste great! Its not something that I need to make as nobody eats it these days in our family, but we are all getting together tomorrow at my parents for the youngest generation to make the Christmas Puddings - my two nieces and my daughter in charge of them, so we all get to stir the puds and make a wish.
    Cute decs Amy, I have done nothing yet towards my own family Christmas (too busy making stuff for the Xmas fair) even though I have a houseful on the Day, but it all somehow all happens every year!
    Gill xx

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  54. Cake is always a good thing, doubled it's even better :) Very lovely looking Xmas cake mixes - I hope you made some wishes! The decorations are so lovely too, I love felt xmas decorations :) This year my xmas efforts will be crochet based I feel :) xx

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  55. Love those reindeer! I'm about half way through presents but need to start the chore of writing all those cards so I can relax in December and just stick them in the post. Being prone to stress has made me learn I need to be as organised as I can and then relax...........some hope! xx

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  56. Looks lovely - I do enjoy seeing what kind of early Christmas preparations other people are making. It seems very sensible to have a contingency cake, I like your thinking! My cakes are made (one for us, two more for gifts) and I am starting to do some shopping. I really need to crack on with some festive gift making - thank you for the timely reminder. x

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  57. You have some lovely preparations going on there! I have done absolutely nothing at all to prepare for Christmas, I really must get a move on!
    Marianne x

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  58. Love the little reindeers so sweet, I've been Christmas crafting for the last few weeks, but it dawn on me the other day it's six weeks away now, I making cards and gifts and secret santa, but finding it hard to find things I can share on the blog. Off to the shops tomorrow.
    Clare xx

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  59. I was just thinking that I need to get my Christmas Fruit cakes started, I also make them early and then booze them up for a few weeks :)

    Love your little reindeers, sooooo cute. :)

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  60. I have bought some decorations to perk up the door wreath, new xmas tree lights as we have been living with a quarter of them on the set not working for the last two years and I've just had enough! I have some cards bought after a recent trip to Dartmouth and have gone through all the boxes in the garage to make sure the whereabouts of all the decorations and the tree base are known.
    Love your decorations-they are very pretty.

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  61. Amy, I do so love a good fruit cake at *any* time of the year! I'll break one out in any season. Lovely with a nice cuppa tea!

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  62. Fun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love the decorations, and I must admit, "Christmas cake" had me stumped until I saw the fruit marinating. I have never yet made what we would call fruit cake, though it's on my list of things to try. For all the jokes about them, my mother was a teacher for many years, and one parent gave her homemade fruitcake whenever she happened to teach one of their children. The way my family devoured that cake was shameless! Excellent stuff!

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