A family-friendly Scandi Christmas table with Portmeirion pottery

A family-friendly Scandi Christmas table with Portmeirion pottery

This December will be the first ever time that we’ve hosted Christmas dinner (well, in the UK … I think we did it once or twice when we lived in Switzerland but the memories are vague … too much glühwein). At the last count, there’s twelve of us in total, and you might be surprised to hear that I’m very relaxed about it all. For one good reason. I’m not doing the cooking. Nope. It’s not my responsibility. Paul’s taking full control and he has a timed-to-the-minute spreadsheet ready to go (alongside a note to buy gin and snacks in case it doesn’t quite go to plan).

The Art of Coorie and the beauty of MagicLinen

The Art of Coorie and the beauty of MagicLinen

A couple of weeks ago, I was sent the most beautiful book to read, The Art of Coorie: How to Live Happy The Scottish Way by Gabriella Bennett. With dreams of one day retreating to a cabin in the heart of Glencoe and with a fondness for fairisle and a wee dram, if every there was a country I’d turn my back on Wales for, it would be likely be Scotland. And coorie, the Scottish art of deriving comfort, wellbeing and energy from wild landscapes and convivial interiors, seems to provide the heart and soul that I’ve always found missing in ‘hygge’.

A Blue Italian family breakfast with Spode

A Blue Italian family breakfast with Spode

With no far flung holidays planned this year (and potentially not next year either if we go ahead with the kitchen renovation) and photos of other families flying off to exotic climes flashing in front of me every time I pop on to social media, I've been suffering from a touch of mostly ridiculous and completely unnecessary mum guilt. Why? I have no idea. My children are far from wanting. And intercontinental jaunts are a luxury not a given. But, still. It's been niggling at me. So I decided to have a little chat with the boys.