Christmas 2022: gifts, tree, meals, decoration… How to prepare

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While we all love Christmas, many of us also dread the stress of preparations. The end of the year period should however be a time of joy and family reunion, but the anxiety sometimes prevails over the magic of Christmas. A period that is all the more stressful in times of inflation.

Under the effect of inflation, the Christmas meal budget will indeed experience a marked increase. BFM Business is already reporting that foie gras prices are expected to increase by around 25% for the holiday season, a price increase ranging from 1.25 euros to 2 euros for a 100 gram block of foie gras. In question, a 30% decline in production because of the avian flu which hit the farms, but also the increase in food to feed the animals. And it’s not the only traditional dish that will suffer from the current price hike. The champagne bill may also be very high. According to the General Union of Champagne Winegrowers (SGV), prices have already increased by 1.3% for winegrowers’ champagnes and 10.4% for house champagnes between January and June 2022. In question, the increase energy prices, but also raw materials such as glass or cork.

In order to prepare you gently for this Christmas 2022, Planet offers you its advice on how to celebrate Christmas at best. Meals, decoration, Christmas tree… The editorial staff gives you all its tips. According to an Ifop report, 77% of French people feel stress related to the purchase of Christmas gifts. For more than half, they are afraid of not finding the right idea, and this year, with a budget that is likely to be very tight, you have to be clever.

If you want to save money on your Christmas gifts, know that you should not buy all your presents at the same time depending on their nature. Perfumes, computers, toys… When to buy them so as not to spend too much? You can save up to several tens of euros according to the calculations made by the Idealo survey. The comparator noted on its platform the average prices of the 30 most popular products within each category between September 28 and December 27, 2020.

As a result, if you want to buy your friends or family electronic gifts such as computers, smartphones or game consoles, prefer to buy them 2 weeks before Christmas. They will cost 604 euros on average, compared to 630 euros 8 weeks before December 25, or 4.3% more. Regarding toys, according to Idealo, the best time to buy your gifts would be 6 weeks before Christmas with an average price of 40 euros.

No question of buying them during Christmas week: the average price would be 44 euros, an increase of 10%. If you want to offer a perfume for Christmas to your beloved or your mother-in-law, you will need to count a month in advance, around November 25. It will then cost you an average price of 160 euros. In comparison, if you buy it 8 weeks before, it will cost you 5% more, since it will cost an average of 168 euros.

What about the Christmas tree? There are always those who do it well in advance from the beginning of November and the latecomers who wait for the last moment a week before D-Day. According to Consoglobe, tradition dictates that the Christmas tree is normally erected on Advent Sunday, the fourth Sunday before Christmas. For this Christmas 2021, this date falls on November 28. If you are one of the French who celebrate Saint-Nicolas, celebrated on December 6, you can therefore wait until this date to install the Christmas tree and take the opportunity to combine the two celebrations.

Regarding prices, if you want to invest in an artificial tree, we advise you to buy it now, so as not to fall victim to high demand from the beginning of December. Many models are already available in specialized stores and you will only have to make your choice before going to checkout. The closer we get to December 24, the more prices are likely to rise, even if the difference will be minimal. In reality, to really save as much as possible, it is better to buy your artificial tree out of season, for example in the middle of summer.

If you opt instead for a natural tree, your room for maneuver is more limited. Once installed in your home, the tree quickly loses its needles. For optimal decoration on December 24, professionals advise buying it at the end of the first week of December, or even ten days before Christmas. Problem, it is also at this time that the demand is the strongest and that the prices can therefore be a little higher. To get good deals on the purchase of your Christmas tree, you should actually buy it as late as possible, or even after December 25.

Regarding the location, there is no rule, but given the size of your tree and the space you want to have to decorate it with your family, it is better to choose an open space. The best place is where you will meet to celebrate Christmas so that it is clearly visible to your guests, whether in the living room or the hallway of the house.

You don’t need to be a DIY pro to design a homemade Christmas decoration. For a look that is as original as it is warm, you can, for example, opt for wooden Christmas decorations for your tree. To have original creations, just buy small miniature wooden logs in creative hobby or decoration stores before personalizing them yourselves. You can paint them in white, red, green or gold according to your tastes, stick original stickers on them or let your children customize them themselves for a very personal look. These small warm home-made suspensions will dress your tree in an original way. Almost as simple to make, the luminous wooden star will command the respect of your loved ones. For the star, you can combine a few pieces of wood linked together and hang light garlands on them.

The natural Christmas wreath hanging on the door of the house can also be made by tying fir branches together with string. All that remains is to add pine cones and chestnuts or hazelnuts, cinnamon sticks and star anise. Y ou are free to customize it with holly branches. For more glamor and a festive decoration, you can also paint the pine cones with gold or red paint. Merry Christmas !

If you have children or grandchildren who still believe in Santa Claus, the gift request letter is a tradition you cannot escape. If you want your little toddlers to get an answer, here are the four addresses to write to Santa Claus, according to the La Poste website.

According to the La Poste website, “just write the mention ‘Santa Claus’ for your mail to be delivered to Santa Claus’ village”. Unlike the letters that will be sent to the North Pole, your envelope does not need to be stamped because the postage is free. Do not forget to write your address on the back of the envelope if you wish to receive a response from Santa Claus.

According to Le Parisien, the French plan to spend an average of 282 euros for the whole of Christmas Eve this year. With the rise in energy and fuel prices, households will therefore watch their spending. La Voix du Nord assures that the price increase could concern foodstuffs from the Christmas table.

Indeed, concerning oysters, for example, their production suffered from bad weather this year. As a result, their price could skyrocket and the seafood should be smaller. Regarding foie gras, the Nordic daily ensures that despite “falling” production according to Marie-Pierre Pé, director of the Interprofessional Foie Gras Committee, there will still be “foie gras for all and without pressure on prices”.

The rise in prices is more to be expected by 2022. Good news also on the side of champagne, the holiday drink par excellence. Champagne saw its sales explode by 48% in the first half. The sellers having a lot of stocks, “we are going to see a flood of promotions on champagne. Price remains the driving force. If we don’t have the price, we don’t have the customer”, summarizes Olivier Dauvers, specialist in mass distribution, with La Voix du Nord.

Appinio, a specialist in market research and surveys in record time, was interested in how the French plan to spend Christmas (traditions, gifts, meals, decoration, etc.). According to his study, the vast majority of French people say they like Christmas (86%), almost one in two French people (48%) even say they love this holiday and look forward to this time of year. A naturally more marked trend among the younger generations: 62% for 16-24 year olds and 65% for 25-34 year olds. Conversely, 9% of French people admit that they do not like this holiday.

What the French like the most:

What the French like least:

This year, the Christmas meal of the French will have on average between 5 and 10 people (52% of respondents), 20% will meet with more than 11, when 18% will do so in small groups (less than 4 people). According to the survey conducted by Appinio, for the vast majority of French people (85%), Christmas is synonymous with a festive meal. We therefore discover here the favorite and most consumed foods at the time of the end of the year celebrations:

Which wine should I choose for my Christmas meal? Not everyone has mastered the “science of wine” and has an expert palate. As the holidays approach, it can indeed be complicated to make the right choices and know how to pair the right bottle with the right dish. From foie gras to dessert, Fabrizio Bucella, sommelier and professor at the Free University of Brussels, gives us his wise advice to avoid making a mistake and impressing your guests.

According to the author of My food and wine pairing course: In 10 weeks flat, “pairing foie gras wine with a sweet white wine like Sauternes works well from an organoleptic point of view”. Problem, if it works in terms of flavor, “mixing foie gras and sweet or sweet wines gives something rather pasty in the mouth” and prevents you from fully enjoying the dishes that follow. For more originality, the specialist therefore offers alternative pairings to “erase the sweet side of the dish with brandies, for example with vodkas, gins, or even whiskeys which will of course be drunk in reasonable qualities”. Thus, the alcohols come to refresh the mouth well and we do not have too much sugar for the rest of the meal. If you are not as daring and want to stick with white wine, Fabrizio Bucella advises you to bet on less sweet wines than Sauternes such as Jurançon, “which retains a better acidity”. You can also opt for late Alsatian harvests, for dry crémants (sparkling sparkling wine) with a residual sugar content or dry champagnes. Objective: choose a wine with a slightly lower sugar content. “If you really care about Sauternes, you have to opt for second wines that have been made with the least mature grapes from the harvest”, explains the sommelier. Another advantage is that they will be less expensive. Planet also tells you how to: keep an open bottle of wine after dinner parties.