It's been a remarkably festive end to November today. I've made the first mince pies of the year, visited The Snowman and the Snowdog exhibition at Newarke Houses in Leicester, bought and decorated my Christmas tree, and even had a present in the form of an exciting looking review book from the British Library to open. Altogether, not a bad day.
Along with half the country I've taken to putting my tree up ever earlier, my excuse, if I need one, this time is that this was the day I could get a lift to a garden centre and back. But also I figure if I'm going to buy a tree I want to enjoy it for as long as possible, and heaven knows the month needs a bit of sparkle. Not least to reconcile me to the intermittent readings from my smart meter which seem to be saying that electricity is costing me almost twice what it did last year. About £5 a day for a one-bedroom flat is frightening.
The Snowman and the Snowdog exhibition, which is on at Newarke Houses until February was charming. It's a set of drawings from the 2012 film spread over a couple of rooms. It doesn't take long to look around, and the pictures are hung to be seen from child height, which is a nice touch. Like the rest of the museum, it's free, and it's a real mood lifter. Honestly recommended for anybody with a fondness for the Snowman who finds themselves in Leicester, I'll be going back and trying to take anybody who's even half willing with me - also, unlike the garden centre, I had the museum to myself which is definitely a bonus with the current covid news.
I'm planning a big baking session for later in the week - time to get to grips with some of the biscuits in Anja Dunk's 'Advent', but have to say the electricity revelation has shocked me a bit and I'm seriously wondering if I can afford to turn the oven on. I can, fortunately, but this is going to be a seriously hard winter for a lot of people and this has really bought it home. For the first time since I lived in houses with scant open fires and no central heating, radiators are assuming luxury status again.