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Here at Ringtons, we are filled with Christmas spirit, and we want to make sure that our customers are feeling the festive magic too. This is why we have put together a handy guide filled with all of our favourite hints and tips for getting into the Christmas spirit. So sit back, relax and enjoy our festive guide with your favourite cup of tea.

12 WAYS TO GET INTO THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT

Are you struggling to get into the Christmas spirit? Here are twelve ways to feel fun and festive in the run-up to the big day.

1. Christmas Movies 

Our first step to getting into the Christmas spirit is to, of course, get the festive films playing. Whether you sit down with a bowl of popcorn and a warming tea or pop them on in the background while you tick off your to-do list, a classic Christmas movie is the perfect way to fan the flames of your festive cheer. 

2. Festive Countdown

Everyone needs a Christmas advent calendar to count down the days in December. No matter your age, festive cheer is for everybody! But if you’re looking for something that little bit more festive, then why not create your own advent calendar, whether it’s for yourself or a loved one? 

Make an advent calendar filled with your favourite things and add a mixture of Ringtons tea, biscuits and treats for a festive gift that keeps on giving. This is the perfect way to pick you up each day in the winter season. 

3. Bakes and Cakes 

Fill the house with merry smells by making mince pies, a Christmas cake or a classic Christmas pudding. You can enjoy these Christmas treats all season long and always have a tasty dessert on hand for unexpected guests popping over for a cuppa and catch-up. The sweet scent of baked goods is a subtle and relaxing way to ease into the Christmas spirit.

4. Magical Decorating 

When it comes to decorating, we believe the more tinsel and sparkle, the better! Whether you do it all in one go or take your time adding a decoration here and there, the magic of transforming your home for the Christmas season is a sure-fire way to spread cheer throughout your home to get the whole family feeling the magic. 

Don’t forget to brew everyone their favourite cup of tea or a festive hot chocolate to keep the mood light, as we all know tensions can run high when everybody gets involved!

5. Enjoy a Christmas Beverage 

Nothing says Christmas like a glass of mulled wine, Advocaat or a warm mug of spiced tea. You can enjoy a Christmas beverage any time and place, so pop some spiced tea in your bag to enjoy in the office, at a friend’s or on the go. Don’t forget to add candy canes, biscuits or a jewel wrapped chocolate on the side for extra Christmas cheer. We think our spiced Christmas tea goes best with a stick of cinnamon! 

6. Visit a Christmas Market 

Now, we know that the hustle and bustle of Christmas days out are not for everyone, but if you loved being amongst the crowds, sharing laughter and enjoying the sounds of carol singers, then you will love a traditional Christmas market. From arts and crafts handmade with love to sweet treats that are perfect for gifting, for many, a Christmas market is the dream place for finding surprise stocking fillers. 

7. Wear a Christmas Jumper

Cute, classic or funny, you’ll be sure to raise a smile and help spread the Christmas cheer with a festive jumper. Whether in the office, running errands or cosy days at home, we don’t think a Christmas jumper should be limited to just one day a year. So, start wearing them now and feel the Christmas spirit with this unofficial uniform for the season. 

8. Christmas Shopping 

If you’re anything like our team at Ringtons, you find joy in giving Christmas presents rather than receiving. Though we may get stressed trying to find the perfect gifts, once you have found them, the feeling of accomplishment is one to savour and enjoy. If you’re stuck on ideas, you can’t go wrong with a Christmas gift from Ringtons, or why not create your own hamper style gift with an assortment of our most popular teas, coffees and biscuits available?

9. Listen to Christmas Songs

Do you start blasting the Christmas songs in November? Or do you think the festive tunes should be reserved for the big day only? Whether you love or loathe them, putting on your favourite Christmas album will not only fill yourself but your home, car or office with joy. Turn the volume up and have a good old singalong!

10. Wrap Up & Add a Bow

Those festive scenes and the thought of your loved ones opening their gifts will make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. So, take the stress out of wrapping up presents and gifts by taking your time with doing a small number each week. This way, you will have more time and energy to add that extra flourish and finishing touch to each present with ribbons, bows and tags.

11. Tour the Best of the Decorated Houses

Get the whole family into the festive spirit by touring the neighbourhood glittering displays. Some people go all out, lighting up their houses and gardens with inflatable Santas, lit up snowmen and flashing lights. So, why not show your appreciation by leaving a donation in their charity collection box if they have one. Or think of games for the whole family to get involved in as you walk, such as the first person to spot a candy cane or sprig of mistletoe? 

Just don’t forget to wrap up warm and consider filling a flask with hot chocolate to keep you all moving. 

12. Enjoy the Party 

Whether it’s with your friends, family or work colleagues, wear a silly hat, pull crackers and tell bad jokes. It’s all part of the fun in the festive season, so don’t be afraid to go all out for this year’s party celebrations! Our golden rule for being the perfect party guest is never to show up empty-handed, bring an assortment of Ringtons treats for the guests, or a gift hamper for the host with the most, and then you can enjoy the party!

Get in the Christmas Spirit with Ringtons

Now you have read through our top tips for feeling the Christmas spirit this holiday season, don’t forget to relax and enjoy the little moments too. These are sometimes our favourite and most treasured memories, after all. Find the perfect Christmas presents in our wide range of hampers and gift sets also available online now, and explore the best gifts for tea lovers guide online now.

5 Ways to Beat the January BluesGetting back into the swing of things after the festive season can be a tough time. So here are some ideas to help ease your way back into the New Year.

 

  1. It’s Normal.

Resolution list pic

It’s perfectly normal if you feel down at this time of year and it’s not all in your head.

Biologically, there are reasons we feel low and lethargic. Lack of daylight, not enough nutrients and less exercise normally coincides with Christmas and this all affects our bodies. Yet we put so much pressure on ourselves at this time of year. Resolutions are set, diets are started, and gyms are overrun with newbies. So what happens when these resolutions fall by the wayside? We feel like failures and berate ourselves. But there’s really no need. It’s normal to feel down and the time will pass, the days will get longer and lighter and your body will respondto that change. So cut yourself some slack.

  1. Get as much daylight as you can. 

Foggy Daylight Pic

This is a difficult task when the weather is cold, grey and wet, but every chance you get, grab the daylight. Daylight helps regulate our circadian rhythms. These rhythms are responsible for helping to control food digestion, appetite, energy levels, sleep quality and length and mood. So without enough daylight, these functions can suffer.

  1. Give your worries a name

Write your worries down picIf you’re worrying about something (or things) in particular, try writing them down. It can help you to look at an issue more logically and work out a solution if there’s one to be had. Or, it can simply help you to gain perspective of a situation.

 

  1. Try Something New.Try Something New Pic

Slipping back into a routine can be difficult, especially if that routine involves things you don’t particularly want to be doing. Not in love with your job? Hate the morning commute? While there are things you might not be able to change straight away, learning a new skill or adding something different into the mix will give you some control over the daily slog. There are lots of free courses available online or you can search for a class near you. It will also increase your confidence, making any further change that little bit easier.

  1. Eat Right.

We are what we eat. Over Christmas, foods higher in fat and calories tend to become the norm. Chocolate for breakfast, takeaways, puddings and never ending tubs of sweets. Eating these types of food regularly make us sluggish and as a result we crave more sugary, high fat foods. It’s a vicious circle. But one that you can break. Cut back on the processed foods and treats and try replacing the sugary drinks with water or fruit teas and you’ll feel the difference almost immediately.

Eat Well Picture

Guest posts by Heather FooChocolate Orange Fudge BrowniesFor me, chocolate orange has always been a festive flavour. I love the richness of the chocolate with the festive spice of the orange.

Here is an easy recipe to bring the flavours to life, so grab a cup of tea, coffee (or a Christmas tipple!) and enjoy these tasty treats over this special festive season.

Ingredients

225g butter
275g light brown sugar
200g dark chocolate
Zest of 1 large orange
Juice of 1/2 an orange
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
140g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
110g chocolate chips
2 tsp Ringtons Spiced Chocolate Orange Loose Tea

Fudgey Topping:

50g butter
50g dark chocolate
100g icing sugar

Sugared orange segments
Ringtons Chocolate Sprinkles

Spiced Chocolate Orange TeaFor the brownies

  1. 2 tsps of Ringtons Spiced Chocolate Orange Loose Tea in a mug of boiled water and leave to brew (you won’t need to use all of this)
  2. Preheat oven to 180oC and line an 8in square cake tin with baking parchment
  3. Place the butter, sugar and dark chocolate in a large heatproof bowl. Set it over a saucepan of warm water. Let the butter and chocolate melt, stirring occasionally. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and leave to cool.
  4. Prepare the orange zest and juice and whisk these together with the eggs, vanilla and salt until combined. Whisk the orange and egg mixture into the cooled melted chocolate mixture – (must be cooled).
  5. Mix in a few tsps of the Ringtons Spiced Chocolate Orange Tea.
  6. Sift the flour and baking powder on to the chocolate mixture and fold it in. Then add the chocolate chips.
  7. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30 minutes for a ‘fudgey’ soft brownie or 35-40 minutes for a more ‘cakey’ brownie.
  8. Leave to cool completely before removing from tin. Then cut into squares.

Decorated Fudge BrowniesFor the Fudge topping

  1. Melt the dark chocolate in a large heatproof bowl, set over a saucepan of warm water.
  2. Cream together the butter and icing sugar
  3. Once cooled. Slowly add the melted chocolate to the butter and icing sugar mixture until well mixed in.
  4. Add 2 tsps of the Ringtons Spiced Chocolate Orange Tea for flavour.
  5. Use 1 tsp of  topping per square of brownie (the more generous the better!), place a sugared orange segment on top and dust with a mixture of icing sugar and Ringtons Fairtrade chocolate sprinkles.

The Finished Fudge Brownies

Guest post from Jeff Lyall

Have you ever uttered one of these immortal lines? “How long do I cook the turkey for?”, “Do we have enough chairs to seat everyone?”, “Have I done all of the shopping?”

Cooking at Christmas time can be stressful but luckily, Ringtons have some great treats to help you enjoy a more relaxed festive break this year.

Plan

Download our list of 30 Things to do before Christmas and make sure nothing is left to chance. You don’t want to have to send someone out on Christmas Day searching for milk.

Snacks

Having a constant supply of biscuits and chocolates to dip into once an hour is absolutely paramount to enjoying a relaxed and indulgent festive season. Make sure to buy quality biscuits, and lots of them! Ringtons Classic Biscuit Hamper includes their famous Gold Taste award-winning Hand Baked Ginger Snaps and is sure to have something for everyone.

Ringtons Classic Biscuit Hamper

Cheese

When it comes to the cheese board, most people remember to buy a smorgasbord of cheeses, hard, soft, and blue from Britain and beyond, but it’s the accompaniments which really lift your cheeses.

Containing three preserves, Ringtons Savoury Selection will spice up your cheese board and biscuits, and make it a these board which will be talked about next year and beyond! The selections sell out fast, so don’t delay if you wish to try them out this year.

The incredibly popular Savoury Selection

Tea

After the seventh glass of wine, and by the time the port comes out, heads can become slightly sore and hazy, so it’s important to hydrate with something else — tea, of course! And for Christmas, make sure you’ve got the very best. Ringtons Ultimate Tea Lovers Selection Box should help see you through the day itself and into 2016! With a selection of some of our most popular teas, you can drink according to your mood.

Ringtons Ultimate Tea Lover’s Gift Box


And finally…

There’s always one. That pesky person who is so difficult to buy for it drives you crazy. If that sounds familiar or if you need a last minute gift, and can’t make up your mind from Ringtons’ handy Christmas guide, a Ringtons gift voucher to the value of your choosing would be welcome in anyone’s stocking.

For someone who’s been really good this year, Santa could always deliver the ultimate in Ringtons luxury. The gold gift box contains a selection of the very best Ringtons products for your truly loved one.

Ringtons Luxury Gold Gift Box

Have a wonderful and stress-free Christmas!

Find Jeff on Twitter and his blog Newcastle Eats.

 

Guest Post by the Monkey Footed MummyIt’s almost that time again, to start planning for visitors, dinner parties, lunches, afternoon tea and more. Whatever your chosen entertainment we all know that cooking and entertaining can become stressful. Here at Ringtons and Monkeyfeet HQ We have a rule throughout December: RELAX, HAVE FUN, NO STRESS!

Sometimes much easier said than done, especially when you want to entertain the whole family –  ALL 23 of them at once in my case!

Given that our rule is total relaxation on Christmas Day, we close the doors and stay in our pyjamas just chilling out. In complete contrast we spend Boxing Day surrounded by family hosting our annual Turkey Sarnie Buffet. (Very Bridget Jones but with a Geordie slant.) There’s always a Christmas jumper or two, lots of gifts and lots of laughs, but the one thing I don’t want to do is spend the day in the kitchen missing out on all the fun. So here’s how we do it

It’s all gravy

I make up a huge jug of gravy and put it in the slow cooker on medium along with sliced turkey from Christmas day. This is left on the table with a pile of ready cut stotties, stuffing, mustard and cranberry sauce. 

Stotties
Image and recipe for Stotties can be found at www.lavendarandlovage.com

 Sweets for my sweets…

An online exclusive gift box that contains all you need to keep the sweetie fans happy is the Luxury Gold Gift Box. Containing ground coffee, instant coffee, tea and biscuits as well as a 1907 bone china mug, this is an ideal gift that’s perfect for sharing.  

Ringtons Luxury Gold Gift Box

Everyone builds their own turkey sarnies with juicy gravy soaked turkey slices and helps themselves to a selection of snacks and sweets. Of course we have plenty of Tea and Coffee on the go thanks to our Ringtons accessories so we can all sit back and, well do a bit more relaxing! It is Christmas after all.

The 1907 Ringtons Tea Pot

That my friends is how I manage to stay sane with 18 adults 5 kids a mountain of toys stuffed into my lounge the day after Christmas!

 How do you manage entertaining guests over the festive period?

You can follow Karen, The Monkeyfooted Mummy on her blog, follow her on Twitter @monkeyfeettweet or find her on Facebook.

How is it November already? We can’t believe Christmas is almost upon us but here at Ringtons HQ we’ve had our Santa hats on for a while, coming up with lots of Christmas gift ideas for you. Our Christmas film is out, we have a cup of tea in hand and we’ve put together a selection of our favourite Ringtons goodies as well as a downloadable Ringtons Christmas Shopping Checklist, to hopefully make your Christmas shopping that little bit easier. So here are a few suggestions for the various loved ones in your life, leaving space for you to fill in some of your own ideas too…

For her
In case you didn’t already know, the way to a woman’s heart is with a bottle of
wine and some chocs, sMrs Lips Gift Seto this Gift Set will be the perfect treat on a cold winter’s evening. The chocolates are infused with Ringtons-worthy flavours of Earl Grey and Premium Gold Coffee and the two mini bottles of wine come with their own cooler – she won’t even have to get up from the sofa! For the lady in your life, why not buy her the Mrs Lips Tea Gift Box. An online exclusive, this set includes everything the tea lover needs in her life, some Ringtons tea and biscuits along with a Mrs Lips stylish mug, beautifully presented in a luxury box.

Coffee MillFor him
Don’t worry, the man in your life doesn’t need to miss out, we have the Mrs Lips equivalent with the Mr Moustache Coffee Gift Box.A luxury Ringtons gift box filled with coffee, biscuits and mug, it’s a sophisticated treat for the coffee connoisseur. And if your man is a gadget enthusiast, why not indulge him in the CoffeeMill, it will make his morning cuppa seriously aromatic.

 

For the little ones
Jingles the ReindeerRingtons are offering some great treats for the little ones this year. Both Jingles the Reindeer and the Snowman are cute little toys with the added bonus of some retro sweets. It will keep them busy on Christmas Day, for a little while at least!

Tea pot and tea cup cufflinksStocking fillers 
Ringtons gifts aren’t just tea and coffee related. For small gifts to stuff in the stocking on Christmas morning, why not opt for the Ringtons 2016 Diary Set that includes both a desk and matching slimline version to get organised for the year ahead.And for him, he doesn’t just have to drink his tea he can wear it too, with these Teapot & Teacup Cufflinks . Quirky and stylish, so Ringtons!

For pets

We don’t want to forget your pets, they are part of your family after all. Hampers for your cat and dog are stocked full of all the necessities your furry friends will love you for as well as a treat for their owner.

Gifts for DogsHave you started your Christmas shopping yet? Which of our Ringtons goodies are your favourites?

To get your free checklist simply click here. All we ask is that you post a tweet in return.

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