Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

01st December 2017

Celebrate trees, make creamy, warming vegan soups, art projects from a winter beach walk, be dazzled at the Eden Project

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

01st December 2017

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

01st December 2017

DO and EVENT Feed The Tree
Tree Dressing Day was initiated by Common Ground in 1990 and has grown to become much more than an expression of a love for trees. It is a chance for the whole community to gather and celebrate the leafy friends we all have in common. It’s also a chance for communities to reflect on the social and cultural history of their local area, and the role trees have played in shaping this story. Try gathering a group and decorating a tree special to you, either in your garden, deep in a forest, or in a park. This could be a traditional ‘clootie’ tree or a more modern yarn bomb. Alternatively, join an organised event, such as the celebration at Centre of the Earth in Birmingham or the wintery party in Mayow Park, London. Search for more events here

RECIPE Golden Blends
The cold snap has made us crave warming soups, but if you’re attempting to cut down or cut out animal products in your diet, it can be difficult to track down truly creamy recipes. Here’s our recipe for comforting, thick luscious leek and potato soup. If you want something to ward off the nasties, try this orange, vitamin-packed carrot and ginger take. Pulses create texture and interest; we like this creamy broccoli and red lentil recipe and this sweet and warming parsnip and split pea soup. If you want to try something really special, this kabocha squash chowder with lobster mushrooms smudges the dying days of autumn into winter.

VISIT Another Eden
As if the Eden Project wasn’t stunning enough, this winter it dazzles. Light projections, soundscapes and live music transform the Biomes into after-dark wonderlands; half Planet Earth, half rave! Created by some of the best light and sound artists in the world, this is the next best thing to seeing the Northern Lights. Arrive early for craft workshops before the show, or take the opportunity to go ice-skating or meet Father Christmas (there are special relaxed sessions for those with additional needs). Light and sound show free with standard admission, Father Christmas and skating extra Book online for cheaper tickets

DO and MAKE Beach Combers
A wintry beach walk is one of life’s great joys. Perk it up for kids by gathering bits and pieces to create art and presents over the colder months. These shell candles are pretty and useful, and make a great gift, whiile these shell plaques look beautiful hung on a wall. If you’re lucky enough to find some pretty driftwood, it makes a beautiful festive tree alternative (this is also a good way to keep decorations out of reach of grabby little hands) or hunt for sea glass to make truly gorgeous jewellery

EVENT Get Your Festive Freak On
Father Christmas and the Twelve Days of Christmas Experience at Sutton House is a special seasonal adventure featuring a spectacular series of whimsical, surreal and imaginative Christmas experiences through the halls and chambers of Hackney’s oldest home that will run each weekend until December 17. There are also creative activities including art, music, dancing, dressing up and toys throughout the 500-year-old house. Standard admission plus £2 to see Father Christmas, hear a story and receive a gift. More here

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