We had a fabulous Christmas here in at the Conservation Research Africa base which started off with our Conservation Research Africa Christmas Party (seen in the main picture). We went to the delicious Ethiopian restaurant, Seble in Area 10. Then on Christmas Day we had a huge breakfast followed by opening our secret santa present. We had to all guess who we thought got us to receive our presents. I had Dom, and she loved her Braai Bitches apron I got here! Brennan was my santa and he got me some super cute little beaded lizards and half a bottle of Malawi vodka. We had a big breakfast all together and then went for a walk round Kumbali before having our big lunch!

Me and Tom did all the food prep on Christmas eve and bless him for being in the kitchen with me! I can be rather bossy to say the least but thankfully he was a good sous chef and happily does the washing up… For Christmas Day we had canapes, starters and for the main event we had beef, chicken and a nut roast! Last night Father Chipiku (our version of Father Crimbo) came to camp and so we managed to get pictures amongst drinking our Esspresso martinis which I knocked up! As Tia Maria is so expensive here I made my own coffee liqueur which was delicious and so much cheaper (and possibly stronger).

We have also had several days off also which is unheard of and it has been really nice relaxing and having fun. For NYE everyone is away at the lake but I decided to stay behind so that I could look after Mara, camp and also thought it would be the best way for me to kick my nicotine habit… I am glad I stayed behind because it thundered for days with tremendous storms which really scares poor Mara. Although I don’t normally let her, she is allowed in my room in the evenings until the others get back.

My house is looking really good – though my wardrobe has expanded – too many trips to DAPP buying cute little outfits. DAPP is like a charity shop over here except it is more like a warehouse and the max price is only ever £3 (!) and as the week goes on it gets cheaper so by Friday you can pick up stuff for like 30p. I have also gotten back into gardening here and my vegetable patch is looking awesome. I have planted fennel, tomatoes, lettuce and a few chilli plants…I have also just sprouted some seeds from the butternut squash used for the Christmas meal so lets see how they do!