It's time to start the preparations for Christmas, isn't it! Time to find or remember where you put the decorations, the Christmas cards, ribbons and bows and of course the Christmas tree. Time to make that all important cake and start the shopping... I've noticed that my branch of Sainsbury's is getting busier by the day. There were very few free spaces in the car park this morning. On the shelves there is change! Familiar items have disappeared for the time being to make room for all those special treats we come to expect at this time of the year.
One of the places I love to visit is Poplars, the garden centre, which is a short drive from where we live. They always put on a good display for Christmas and each year there is a different theme. This year's theme is The Snow Queen and you can see her in the picture below, sitting on her sleigh with the reindeer in front. There is a Santa hut for the children. It gets more spectacular each year. The restaurant does good business with mince pies galore and a view of the Christmas trees for sale just outside the window.
Garden centres do big business over here these days. They have changed enormously since the days when they were just nurseries. Now they are grand and full of all sorts of delights and it is possible to spend the whole day in them.
We bought a new Christmas tree for this year. I think it's a little bigger than the previous one but we are restricted by space so it is still small. I may need to buy some new baubles for it (yeah) but must wait and see. First I need to assess the situation and where we're going to put it etc.
Most importantly - don't forget your spiritual preparations. If you go to church, go! If you don't, consider trying it? Or follow your God wherever he/she goes. You will be all the more richer for it.
Will you be having a Christmas tree in your home this year? Have you decorated it yet?