12 days of blogmas 2020: #TBTBSanta bookswap

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My twentysecond day of cheer was: so funny! It really made me laugh out loud. It’s Santa’s rubber ducky! ๐Ÿ˜€

Yesterday’s tea was a “Guardian Angel” tea, with apple, coriander, fennel, rosehip, spearmint, aniseed, lemon balm and cornflower. It sounds really interesting! And I’m glad to find a fruit blend without hibiscus. It smells a bit sweet and the color is a soft orange. The taste is a soft sweetness of the fennel and aniseed, with a hint of apple and spearmint. I think it’s the lemon balm that makes it feel so soft. It’s really nice! Would buy this tea.

And today, my twentythird day of cheer, is a: Color your own gnome cone. I love gnomes! This will be a fun activity for today, in between the cooking and baking for our Christmas days. ๐Ÿ˜€

Today’s tea is a “Relaxing” tea, with lemon balm, lavender, sage, fennel, parsely and calendula. It sounds amazing and you can smell the lavender and sage well. The color is a light orange. The taste is just like the smell, mostly lavender and sage, but then the sweetness of the fennel and the herbiness of the parsely hits you. It’s a surprising taste, parsely in tea. But I do like it!

For the past few years I have been lurking #tbtbsanta on twitter. The swap is organized by that Artsy reader girl. It’s a bookish secret santa swap! And this year I finally decided to join in!

It starts with filling out a questionnaire I can possibly use for my memoirs or something, because it was so long and with many detailed questions about likes and dislikes. It seriously made me think of things I never wondered about before. My about me page is the short version, of last years questionaire.

Then comes the anticipation of WHO your santee will be. You start lurking the twitter hashtag again, saving everyone who signed up on a list, so you can secretely stalk your santee later to find out what they like and what to get them. Yes, even though there also is that huge questionaire. This is part of the fun after all!

My santee turned out to be someone not very active on twitter, but also a bookblogger and someone with a huuuuuge TBR on Goodreads. I had a lot of fun plotting and buying her gifts, and after they all arrived, ofcourse the wrapping of the gifts as you have seen in my blogmas introduction post. Besides the books and the snacks and the little gifts, I also made a bookish quote piece. I can’t show it yet as she hasn’t unwrapped her gifts yet, but I will add the link to my twitter post when she has.

I really had much fun and sending out the gift box was really exciting, as you get to follow your package online these days, refreshing the page on the day of delivery to find out if it’s there yet and if she will unbox and unwrap the minute of arrival or wait till Christmas! ๐Ÿ˜€

After that, it suddenly hits: I will receive a gift box too. And you start hunting the hashtag for clues to see if they match you. I found my secret santa rather quickly and had huge fun trying to keep it a secret for her. After all, I wasn’t sure, I might have been wrong? (I wasn’t )

But finally the door bell rings and a gift is delivered. I unboxed it and put all the gifts under my tree, together with the #25daysofcheer swap and the newspaper wrapped gifts by my partner. I love building up the anticipation and it looks so festive!

So yesterday I did something I never got to do as a kid. I got out of bed and (after my yoga and breakfast) started ripping that paper! It was so much, I could hardly believe it was all for me.

There were both goodies as books, but more books than I expected. I want to read all of them! The two from Dot Hutchison are from my one of my favorite series. I probably will start with those. Or at least one of them. And the goodies are fun too! I LOVE the wooden reindeer ornaments. They look perfect in my Scandinavian themed tree. The botanical yellow magnetic bookmarks are so beautiful, I think they will become a favorite. Either in my journal or to use in books. That Lush soap is a Christmas special, with cardamom and orange. I bought myself one and was sad to not have bought more before the stores closed. It’s delicious! The cork bunting is a really good gift too and will be part of my new craft room after buying a house next year. Seriously, I love all of it. I could go on typing reasons for everything. This was the BEST first #tbtbsanta experience I could have wished for. ๐Ÿ˜€

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