You’re getting ready to warm up with some hot chocolate as the temperatures are lowering and the nights are becoming longer. As that first layer of snow falls, you’re planning secret Santa with your family and getting into the Christmas spirit. This is what I love. But oh wait, that’s not my reality this year (even though I heard it’s not cold in Belgium either). I’m traveling in Australia and will have to go a second year without my family this Christmas. Last year I still had a bit of cold in the mountains of Darjeeling, India, but this year I’m in full summer mode. That means water slides, barbecues, cold salads, air conditioning and walking around in flip flops and shorts all day, every day. This leaves me with the feeling of a shoe that doesn’t quite fit. Even though it is a reality for everybody living in the southern hemisphere, summer and Christmas do not seem like the most obvious match to me.
No wonder that my brain found it difficult to get into the Christmas spirit this year and weirdly enough, giant fake snowmen don’t help. I didn’t want to go into the traditional kitschy Christmas decorations that I secretly (or very openly) love to use back home in Belgium. Red Christmas hats, a giant christmas tree with twinkly lights and bulbs, it just doesn’t work when the trees are blooming and summer is in full swing. I felt a need for a lighter version that would be more suited for the temperatures. I tried to find inspiration that came out of the cliche, which was not as easy as I though. Even though Australians and fellow southern hemisphere countries have always celebrated in summer, the decorations are still focused on a cold christmas. Weird? Yes so enter DIY’s! Thankfully there are inventive bloggers who transform the traditional holiday decor into an alternative that leaves me with both a summery urge for barbecues and cocktails and a Christmas spirit. Fresh flowers? A decorated cactus? White twinkly lights? Light open spaces? Bright pinks and pastels? Yes, please! A different approach to the holidays, but one that feels much more suited to Christmas in Australia.
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