Don’t worry, we’re not going to burn them!
But we don’t have a Christmas tree (because it’s paganistic and possibly idolatrous [Jeremiah 10:2-4], and because my sister and I are both allergic to pine), and we’re obviously not using the fireplace for it’s natural purpose in this weather, so it seems a pretty cool place to store the presents.
I mentioned it in a Gaelic oral assessment the other week, topic of Christmas (Nollaig) with another student, and she mentioned presents under the tree and asked if I did that… and I said, “No, we’ll put them in the fireplace” (“Cha chuir. Cuiridh sinn na tiodhlaidhean anns an aite-teine”), and there was just an awkward silence for a bit as she struggled to process that thought.
Anyway, the fireplace was cleaned out a few months ago, and we put a purple sheet down (partially because we don’t actually have any red and green sheets, and partially because I’m trying to bring purple in as the Christmas colour), and have been putting the presents in there as we wrap them.
1 – Red and green is because of mistletoe, and mistletoe fruits in July and August here.
2 – Purple is the colour of Advent.
3 – When the bloom of the jacarandah tree is here, Christmas time is near.
4 – Agapanthas bloom at this time of year, too.