Price Points: Grown-up Advent calendars

Selection of grown-up Advent calendars | H is for Home

There aren’t any children in our household, however that doesn’t stop us getting excited about Christmas. Christmas proper for us generally begins on Advent – this year, the 3rd of December. On that day, the tree gets erected, decorations go up and, if we’ve managed a bit of forward planning, the first door of the Advent calendar gets opened.

There’s a growing number of grown-up Advent calendars on the market – and there’s something for everyone – glamour pusses, real ale drinkers, coffee connoisseurs as well as the sweet-toothed. Here are three of our favourites…

  1. Christmas coffee advent by Perkulatte: £40, Notonthehighstreet
  2. Beer advent calendar: £74.99, The Pip Stop
  3. 24-day beauty advent calendar: £120.00, Selfridges

Price Points: New Year’s Eve bubbly

Selection of New Year's Eve bubbly | H is for Home

What are you doing on New Year’s Eve? We’ll be having a quiet one at home, probably watching a film and then maybe Jools Holland’s Hootenanny on the box. We’ll be enjoying a bottle or two of New Year’s Eve bubbly listening to the fireworks going off around the neighbourhood.

We can heartily recommend all the bottles featured below – we’ve personally tested them ourselves! Who needs to spend hundreds of pounds on Cristal Champagne and the like? These are excellent value and taste great!

What’s your tipple of choice on New Year’s Eve?

  1. Wm Morrison Vintage Cava Brut: £6.50, Morrisons
  2. Astoria Corderie Prosecco Di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry: £11.25 Gerrard Seel
  3. Tesco Finest Vintage Champagne: £25, Tesco

Christmas gifts of the day: Christmas spirit

Selection of alcohol that would make good Christmas presents | H is for Home

Almost everyone (disclaimer… over the age of 18!) would appreciate unwrapping a gift of Christmas spirit of some description.

We all have our different poisons. I’m not a whisky (or whiskey) drinker – I’ve never been able to even smell the stuff – nor do I much care for brandy (except for in an Alexander or Christmas pudding). However this Christmas, I’d happily sit in front of the fire and quaff a bottle of Chocoholic stout or glass of port. Justin, on the other hand, does dip into whisky world – and loves an old fashioned glass of Maker’s Mark with one ice cube. Our minds and tastes meet at a full-bodied red wine – a fruity shiraz maybe… or cold, dry, crisp bubbly of any type – champagne, prosecco, cava – perhaps all three – it’s Christmas after all!

Here’s a selection of tasty tipples that might take your fancy.

  1. Two Birds Christmas spiced vodka – 70cl: £32.95
  2. Dalwhinnie Winters Gold: £37.90
  3. Grahams 30 year old tawny port: £64.79
  4. Babycham sparkling perry 20cl & glass gift pack: £7.99
  5. Slingsby rhubarb gin: £39.99
  6. Saltaire Triple Chocoholic stout: £2.75
  7. 30 year old whisky gift set – 5 x 3cl: £150.00

Price Points: Christmas mixed wine cases

Christmas mixed wine cases | H is for Home

It’s been snowing for much of the day today – winter is coming, and so is Christmas. At the beginning of each December we start stockpiling food and drink to be consumed during Christmas week. This year, we plan on ordering a couple of Christmas mixed wine cases (or three). We enjoy red, white, rosé and sparkling wines – any kind of wine really! 🙂

Our local supermarket has quite a good range of wines on offer, but we like to try new things at this time of year. These days, ordering wine online is just so easy to do. There are lots of places where you can buy mixed wine cases, i.e. 12 bottles of red, white and sometimes rosé or sparkling – often from various countries and continents. The good thing about this option is that generally, you get bottles of wine that you probably wouldn’t have chosen yourself – an opportunity for surprising and delectable discoveries!

Whenever we come across a bottle of wine that we really love, we record it on the free Delectable app. – just take a photo of the label and it usually recognises the wine. It gives you other people’s reviews and ratings… and works on beers and spirits as well.

  1. The Winter Wonderland 12 x 75cl bottles: £71.88, Majestic Wine
  2. Christmas Entertaining dozen mixed case: £108.00, Tesco
  3. Hugh Johnson’s Christmas Collection: £119.88, Sunday Times Wine Club

Vintage drink mats

Vintage drink mats collection | H is for Home

We bought a bagful of vintage drink mats yesterday.

Vintage Cherry B Drink mats | H is for Home

They date from the 1960s era and we like the various designs.

Vintage Cherry B drink mat | H is for Home Vintage Babycham drink mat | H is for Home

There are card coasters advertising Cherry B, Babycham, Dewar’s whisky and Martell cognac.

Vintage Dewar's drink mat | H is for Home Vintage Dewar's drink mat | H is for Home

There are enough to make sets of 6 for both Dewars patterns, sets of 6 for the simple cherry design, a set of 4 for the pretty Cherry B party girls – and a couple each of the Babycham and Martell.

vintage MArtell drink mat | H is for Home

Drop us a line if you’re interested – or check them out on our website in the next day or two.

Etsy List: Gin, gin!

'Etsy List' blog post banner

'Gin, gin!' Etsy List curated by H is for Home

It’s World Gin Day at the weekend. I’d never heard of it before, but apparently it’s been going for 7 years.

It’s my favourite spirit; I have it with lots of ice, tonic, squeeze of lime and perhaps a dash of elderflower cordial – a perfect summer’s day tipple!

There is an increasing number of gins on the market from which to choose. I like Tanqueray and Bombay Sapphire but there are rose and violet-scented ones (don’t fancy those myself!), saffron, chamomile-infused… There’s even a market for vintage where bottles from the 1950s are fetching over £300!

Gin, gin!
Curated by H is for Home