Nothing says Christmas to me more than the smell of woody spices such as cinnamon and star anise combined with the faint pine smell from the Christmas tree and the fruit cake cooking slowly in the oven. Yes, I must confess that I do love the festive period and I love my home to smell wonderfully festal as I deck my halls with bells and holly. However, scented candles and even burner oils whilst lovely never seem to fill my home with the smell I am longing for and they can also prove quite costly, my little trick requires that you use an small slow cooker and a range of natural herbs and spices that will really give an authentic smell.

Pick up a small second hand slow cooker or find one that you won’t need to slow-cook your lamb in. Place the christmasfollowing ingredients into the slow cooker:

1/2 orange, sliced

3 cinnamon sticks, broken in half

1 inch fresh ginger crushed and sliced

1 teaspoon cloves, whole

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

3 star anise

Fill the crockpot with water about 1 ½ inches below the rim and place on a low setting with the lid off. Soon your house will smell of festive happiness.

You can also use this technique for getting rid of lingering food odours. Simply place few tablespoons of baking soda with water in the bow of the slow cooker and add three drops of lemon pure essential oil. Place the crockpot in whichever room is most in need of a little freshening and set it to LOW with the lid off. The odours will soon disappear!

Have fun and experiment with different odours.