Making Christmas

Because at the hillscene we just love celebrating the creative spirit and making things, we’ve included some great inspiration for making your own Christmas cheer. Whether it be with craft activities or food you can always add your own touch to Christmas and continue a great tradition or start a new one.


Christmas Wreaths

by Adriana Alvarez

I’m always looking for things to make and do with my kids so I thought these simple, yet beautiful paper wreaths would be a great activity you can make with your kids (or for yourself!). All you need are some beautiful papers cut in a square, and some quick drying glue. I used a hot glue gun which means it sticks very quickly and makes it a lot easier but be careful to supervise this if you are doing the activity with young kids. I’ve used two different papers for each wreath but you could use the same paper to get a more uniform effect.

Start by folding  a thin strip along one edge of the paper about 2cm wide. Then fold in a concertina fold back into the paper. Repeat folding in 2cm wide concertina folds until you have folded all the paper and you have one long thin strip. Fold the strip in half and glue the two edges of the paper together, you may have to hold it together for a few minutes until it sticks (a few seconds if you’re using a hot glue gun). You should have a fan when you open it up.

Do the same with the other bit of paper. When you have the two fans opened up you can glue the two flat edges together and there you have a wreath. You can make as many as you like with different coloured and sized papers, if you want to be more creative you could get the kids to paint or colour some paper to use first. Now just put a small hole at the top and tie some ribbon through it.

Hang it on your door or they look great hanging on a window as well.

Christmas Cocktail

by Amy Middleton

When contemplating my Christmas menu for this year, I felt a little disorientated by Melbourne’s shifting weather patterns. To me the warm weather represents BBQ’s and bubbles, the cold weather ignites a yearning for roast turkey and mulled wine.  The recent climatic corruptions have inspired me to prepare for each and every atmospheric deviation that might present itself this December. I present to you… the ‘Whatever the Weather’ cocktail.

One cup of Dark Rum… yes, a full cup!
90 ml Lemon Juice… freshly squeezed is best!
120 ml Thyme Syrup
360 ml Apple Cider
120 ml Club Soda
8 dashes of Bitters

To make thyme syrup combine two cups of sugar, one and a half cups of sugar and eight thyme springs in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer.  When all the sugar has fully dissolved, remove the saucepan from the heat and place the syrup in the fridge to cool.

Place all the contents in a large pitcher. If the sun is shining serve chilled, in a mason jar with a fancy straw and add a few fresh thyme leaves. If the weather is a little gloomy, warm the contents in saucepan and serve in a mug with a wheel of apple… and a stick of cinnamon if you feel so inclined.



Chutney Swap!

by Zac Exner

My friendships revolve around a general love of food! We tend to Interact around food, talk about food, share ideas about food and generally eat too much food…..

So this year I was wondering what to do with my friends to celebrate Christmas, and I thought hey, instead of a Secret Santa why don’t we all make a food item to share amongst the group, and I couldn’t think of anything better than my favourite condiment Chutney!

We organised a group to all make a big pot of their favourite Chutney, Kasundi, Pickle or Savoury Jam to share with the group! We all had a couple of weeks to decide and create our jars of gold before we all gathered around my coffee table with a loaf of bread, crackers and delved into our collection, which included Mango Chutney, Chilli Jam, Tomato Kasundi and an array of others.

Everyone that participated thought ‘Hey – this is a lot easier than I thought!’ and now we have many different jars or delicious goodies all for the price of a few spices, some raw ingredients and a couple hours in the kitchen!

So get out there, pick a few recipes and swap with your mates!

Mango Chutneycollage

The editorial team at the Hillscene would like to wish everyone a safe and Happy Christmas! We hope you celebrate it in your own special way with the people you love.