.......... For me one of the first things I love about this time of year is when Christmas decorations slowly start creeping into the shops, - and this year has been no exception: ..... come off it? ... everyone loves this time of year don't they? ... it has been far too early to say "Happy Christmas" to anyone - and way too early for most to put the tree up at home, but it's absolutely great to wander around the local shops & antique centres browsing through all the Chrimbo Decks!
Barn Antiques, and the Stratford Antiques Centre (Dodwell) are easily reachable from Chipping Campden, - and both worth the occasional mooch throughout the year - neither proved to disappoint and their Christmas displays were lovely! ...
We were infact looking for antique pine, - perhaps a chest, table, cabinet for Number Six. ..... we left with a yoke pail ! .... not the first time we have been distracted and nice to have found something quirky which we have since filled with old copies of the Cotswold Journal and kindling for the wood burner at Number Six
The Yoke Pail with papers/kindling
ready for the next guests
I wouldn't be the first person to say one of my favourite local shops is Drinkwaters on the High Street in Chipping Campden.
Full of lovely local fruit & veg, flowers & preserves - (great lemon curd & honey!)
it was great to see their Christmas Wreaths hanging outside with bunches of mistletoe
... not to mention the stems of sprouts - essential for the Christmas table!
December 5th, at the Campden Christmas Market
Lots of goodies on offer, - Judith from Shakespeares Sisters Soap - Stratford upon Avon displaying her wonderful soaps and balms, - sprigs of holly amongst the home made biscuits, jams and pickles.
On Tuesday we decided on a quick trip to choose Christmas Trees, we were looking for a large tree for the Crafty Cottage garden, - and 2 smaller trees to decorate the interiors of each cottage.
and after some trepidation "Hey Presto" ! Paul and I added a little Christmas cheer to Sheep Street!
Wednesday morning, and a quick trip to the Fosseway Garden Centre Moreton in Marsh,
A wonderful display of Christmas decorations, and outside Christmas Roses & berries!
... but it was soooooo cold, - even the Sheep at the garden centre were wearing boots & woolly hats!
Back at Crafty Cottage and Number Six, the smaller Christmas trees have been placed into each cottage to re-adjust to the warmer atmosphere, - with guests due to arrive at the weekend at Crafty Cottage - I was eager to decorate the trees .... which I hope you agree look lovely !?
The resident sheep were duly attired with Christmas Hats, and the cottages were decorated for guests due to spend Christmas in the Cotswolds!
And in the same fashion as previous years - the New Year followed very quickly!
With guests due to arrive in both cottages to celebrate the new year, we had a quick changeover - and then could return home to our sofa, falling asleep in front of the Christmas telly with one hand in the Quality Streets! ... Chipping Campden appeared to be ticking over nicely as we bumped into familiar faces & locals in the pubs over Christmas, - and it was nice to welcome visitors to the town too! ... things are generally quiet as you can imagine at this time of year - but as the weather was so mild with a good quantity of winter sunshine which seemed to encourage more people to get out and about!
..... and so, the guests left and the decorations have been taken down, - We have had great feedback from everyone thankfully, and have already taken many bookings for the year ahead including one for New Years eve 2015-16! which is great. Our new website was launched just prior to Christmas which now includes both our cottages Crafty Cottages and we continue to be excited to see what the future brings :-)
... whatever happens I will be sure to keep you posted!