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Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

16th December 2016

Celebrate the solstice, immerse yourselves in Moomins, make spicy pomanders, go for a winter wander!

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

16th December 2016

Kate Hodges

By Kate Hodges

16th December 2016

CELEBRATE Dark Days
The winter solstice falls on December 21. We’ve gathered together some of our favourite ways to celebrate, including getting witchy, making the time meaningful, and enjoying a warming wassail cup. Alternatively, head to Brighton for the annual Burning the Clocks parade, where the streets are lit by hundreds of hand-made paper lanterns and throb to the sound of samba drums. Defiant locals bring light and noise to their city on the longest night of the year, then fling their willow-and-parchment lamps on to a huge bonfire on Brighton beach. It’s a fiesta, but also a chance for contemplation.

EVENT Moomin Brilliant
The South Bank Centre’s immersive Moomins exhibition opens today. The journey will take you through the eccentric world of Moominland, as you clamber through forests, huddle in caves and set sail on the high seas, all while learning how genius write Tove Jansson created her stories. There’s lots else going on around the very Christmassy Southbank Centre this weekend, including free Scandinavian craft sessions and storytelling, virtual reality art piece Treehugger, a gonk-filled winter market, and the BUMP roller disco.

MAKE Nice and Spicy
Orange pomanders are fun to make, look beautiful hung on the tree and around the house, and smell of warm spices and citrus. Delicious! If you make some this weekend, they’ll just about be dry in time for the big day, or you can enjoy them fresh. We lovethese ones that are decorated in swirly patterns of cloves.

EVENT Get Ready to Ramble
The Ramblers annual, nationwide Festival of Winter Walks runs from 17 December to January 8, 2017. Walkers across the country are invited to take part in one of hundreds of walks to blow away the cobwebs and burn off the Christmas indulgence. You’ll find group rambles, routes and leaderboards to inspire you to tramp across frosty fields at the Ramblers website. With bare trees and foliage-free fields, it’s an ideal time to spot wildlife, so take your binoculars.

COOK Easy Sweets
Fill your house with sweet smells this weekend, and whip up some treats for the festive season. There are plenty of ideas here, including no-cook recipes that are easy for tiny hands to make. Decorate boxes, and take some around to your neighbours as seasonal gifts.

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