We had the loveliest Christmas this year - exploring, sightseeing, eating more than I thought ever possible, and lazing about with family and friends after being away from London for a whole year.

It was R's first time in London, so we spent some time exploring the sights. Bucks Palace, Big Ben, Covent Garden, the South Bank, the Natural History Museum, the British Museum, St Paul's, Old Spitalfields Market, Tower Bridge, the Shard...

(We can't really pose for photos...)

Of course, a visit to London wouldn't be complete without a trip to my beloved dentist. He's been looking after my teeth since I was 3 years old, and he's seen me grow up from a chubby pig-tailed little girl to ...a chubby ponytailed big girl.

Christmas Eve was conducted in the standard Polish fashion: our Wigilia supper was delicious with pierogi (dumplings) and barszcz (beetroot soup) and a veritable cornucopia of herring dishes (pickled, Kashubian style with raisins and spices, herring salad) and vegetable salad and potatoes and bread and smoked salmon and roasted salmon and "greek fish" and cabbage cooked with wild mushrooms and millions and billions of tasty treats. Afterwards, we opened our gifts (Santa visits Polish children on Christmas Eve for some reason) - Christmas jumpers and theatre tickets and biscuits and days out and other lovely things awaited us under the tree.

Christmas Day was the usual English affair - long lazy breakfast, then a ridiculously large turkey with all the trimmings (a nut roast for my animal-loving other half... That's not to say I don't like animals, I really do love them... especially smack bang on my plate dripping in gravy) and a lot of mince pies and booze. I just can't get enough of Christmas stuffing. Why don't they sell that all year round, I ask?

Then, of course, super lazy Boxing Day. Leftovers, mulled wine, and movies. What more could you want?

One completely unexpected surprise came from Deb of Fondant Fibre. I ordered some custom dyed yarn a while back for a jumper for myself... that got lost in the post. I ordered some beautiful fibre from her, but the package it arrived in seemed a little big. She'd only gone and dyed the whole lot for me again as a Christmas surprise! The kindness of the knitting community never ceases to amaze me. A wonderful, wonderful gift.

I didn't feel at all ready to come home. I had a little sniffle back in the flat, everything seemed too empty and un-Christmassy for my liking. That said, the festive season is far from over here. In Spain, Santa doesn't bring the gifts - the three kings do. So, no carrot out for Rudolf on the 24th. It's old bread and treats for the camels on the 5th, so they have something to nibble on whilst the three kings leave gifts for everyone to open on the morning of the 6th. All the lights are still up, and everyone's still feeling jolly, so there's still plenty of holiday cheer to keep me going :)

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