We’re on the cusp of winter here. The leaves have long gone, leaving bare skeletal trees silhouetted against a moody, turbulent sky. Yesterday we even had snow! It’s the kind of weather that begs you to get cosy, light a fire and do some festive cooking.

In this post I wanted to share a few things that have been soothing the winter edge for me. First up is the divine Christmas Chronicles by Nigel Slater. This part cookbook, part ode to winter is the most beautiful thing I’ve laid my hands on in ages and is chock a block with recipes and festive tales. It’s a MUST have for this season.

I’ve been craving warming spices and although I have yet to begin making mince pies and fruit cakes I have been enjoying chai tea and in this case I’m really enjoying the Hoogly Baked Apple Chai tea which is so Christmasy and yummy!

The dark evenings bring out the inner cultural connoisseur in me and in particular I crave the ballet (theatres decked in dark velvets and sugar plum fairies!). While it can be it bit hard to get to the theatre, the Royal Opera House have live cinema screenings of their ballets or you can buy their excellent dvds. The Nutcracker is my choice for this time of year.

Finally I have been keeping busy framing paintings for my Christmas shows in Dublin, Belfast and Bushmills. You can see some of my new work here if you wish. I’ve also been vlogging every week so here is my latest for you.

What things have you been enjoying in these colder, darker days?