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Well, surely we have all noticed it’s that time of year again. The Christmas trees have been on sale since October, the mailboxes have been full of sales from toys to gardening to everything in between, and finally its Christmas week. Hopefully your shopping is done, the Christmas meal is organized and the bubbles are already chilling.

This email is simply to send our best wishes to you and your loved ones for the Christmas period. We hope 2014 was everything that you could have hoped for, and that the year ahead will bring great things. We have included some Christmas traditions from some of our staff members that will make for some light reading on your run up to Christmas.

Royden & Kristi and the team at Kingsland Osteopaths

Royden’s early memories of Christmas are the good old South Island farming days. Meat straight from paddock to table, some freshly dug potatoes, more meat, some seriously potent trifle and then a busy afternoon of haymaking. The next few weeks were spent bailing and stacking the shed for the next winters feed, and eating the leftovers from his mums mammoth Christmas feast.  (photo of haymaking)

Kristi’s family started a Christmas tradition a few years ago, which has evolved to be an annual challenge. At the end of family Christmas celebrations, everyone writes down a challenge to be drawn out of a hat, and then has one year to complete their selected challenge. There has been some effort, planning, strategy and at times a little sneaky deceit to try and accomplish the challenge and produce evidence in time for the next Christmas get together. Showering under a waterfall, posing for a portrait session, milking a cow to name just a few of the standouts. It is enormous fun and this year promises to be no different, for as I write this 6 weeks out from Christmas there are at least 5 of us (out of 8) who are yet to complete!

Amanda has a love of all things vintage, and has become a master stylist through her years as the Vintage Table owner. For Amanda, Christmas is always spent with her family, and she enjoys planning (oh how she enjoys planning) and preparing the Christmas table setting. One of Amanda’s favorite looks is silver with minimal colour, but the presence of three small girls in the house with their own colourful ideas can present some style challenges! (photos)

Sue is our resident master baker, and often brings delicious home-baked goodies to share. One of Sues favorite Christmas recipes is her delicious Roast Vege salad – a filling addition to any meal and great the next day for lunch.

To Make:
Use one or two large roasting dishes depending on quantity of veg you are cooking. Veg should only be one layer thick in cooking dish to cook quickly. Preheat oven to high temp round 250 while prepping veg.  Cut veg into 2-3cm chunks. Use any veg but I like potatoes, kumara, pumpkin, yams, carrots, parsnip. Add to each dish one white onion and one red onion cut in quarters and placed through the roasting dish to flavour. Add as much whole garlic as you like. Use coconut oil or any cooking oil in roasting dishes. Use enough so that veges don’t stick to pan and you get the nice crunchy bits. Season very well with rock salt. You may need to turn veg a few times. Cook to brown and then I like to grill for a few minutes to get a nice crunch on some of the veg edges. Veg can be cooked the day before and left in fridge.

To Plate:
Let cool a little then transfer to plate/s (preferably white). At this stage using your hands toss through some rocket and any fresh herbs (optional).  Break over top some feta (optional) grind over some pepper, sprinkle with a good olive oil and balsamic/lemon juice (optional) another grind of rock salt especially if you leave out the feta.