It is the sixth day of Christmas and the New Year is almost upon us so I thought I would pop in to share a few of our Christmas memories from this year.
We made it to the cinema on the 22nd to see White Christmas and it was a lovely experience for us all. I have never been so immersed in the film (I am usually knitting or multi-tasking in some way!) and I found it very funny and heartwarming. We had a break half way through too so we could stretch our legs and have a drink and munch on the popcorn we had brought with us. T’was fun!
We had friends over later that afternoon so we spent some time baking and making sweet treats on the 21st December, which was enjoyable – both the baking and sampling 🙂
The stars and heart biscuits are a German recipe. The Germans I know bake a wide variety of delicious “Plaetzchen” (in their hundreds) during Advent to offer around at their cosy Advent get togethers. I have memories of looking into the biscuit tin with wide eyes, not knowing what to pick first – you are so spoilt for choice! I imagine I took a fair few! 🙂 Many have ground nuts in them, which mine do too, instead of flour which makes them nice and chewy – yum! We also made more carob sweets ( I shared the recipe here) and date truffles (the recipe is here), which were both suitable for our guests who are gluten intolerant/vegan/avoiding sugar.
For us, Christmas really starts on Christmas Eve when we attend a Christingle Service at a local church. The service is geared towards children and there is a lovely storyteller who weaves the story of the Nativity beautifully. We never grow tired of it. Each child is allowed to add a figurine to the Nativity scene at the front of the church and they also each received a Christingle. The service always sets a reverent mood which we appreciate.
Of course the children were also eagerly anticipating Father Christmas’s visit. We follow his journey using the Norad Santa Tracker and we always leave him and Rudolph a snack. Father Christmas has a penchant for Baileys we think 😉 Before bedtime, we spent a little time sitting by the fire singing all the carols we know and other Christmas songs we enjoy before trying to get the girls to bed – hmmn…needless to say they were rather too excited to have an early night!!
We were up bright and early and the girls ran into the lounge with glee to discover that the magic had happened overnight- I just love to see the wonder in their eyes. With my eldest being eleven, I am very conscious that this could well be the last ‘magical’ year for her, but I think she has a strong wish to believe, so you never know….I think I was over twelve….time will tell.
The magic also happened on the Nature Table as we welcomed dear baby Jesus to the stable.
The shepherds (and sheep!) arrived the next day
and the Kings started their journey to Bethlehem and will arrive at Epiphany.
We spent a really peaceful Christmas Day in each others company. It was lovely to have a slow day after a busy Advent. We opened presents, had a delicious breakfast made by Daddy and went out to see a brass band perform Christmas songs at a bandstand half an hours drive from where we live. We do this every year for a change of scene and some fresh air and it is a really fun experience as the conductor gets everyone dancing and interracting with the band in various fun ways. We brought along some coffee and Baileys (for the adults) and mulled apple juice for the girls and some home made biscuits of course 🙂
Then we came home to eat lunch, followed by several games of charades – we do love a game of charades 🙂 As it grew dark, we went for a walk around our area to look at the Christmas lights, singing a few carols as we walked.
And later that evening, we cosied up on the sofa to watch a ballet film performance of the The Nutcracker (from 1993 with Macauley Culkin) on YouTube. We found it a couple of years ago and it is a really lovely film for children to watch at this time of year, especially if they don’t have access to the Ballet locally. My daughters love the costumes and dancing and the choreography and casting is great. Very magical.
As for homemade presents, I actually managed to finish the Teddy Bears on the 23rd December!!! It did surprise me! It was a close call and I promised myself I wouldn’t be up late on Christmas Eve finishing them off as I was last year, so I was open to finishing them off by the New Year, but somehow it all fell into place. A little Christmas Miracle 😉
My daughters love them so it was worth redoing them from scratch; starting again just over a week before Christmas – eek! Anyway without further ado, Meet Milly and Molly 🙂
Milly in the green is a little smaller than Molly due to the green yarn knitting up differently, but no matter.
I added little ribbons to their heads so they appear more feminine. I wasn’t sure about the way they looked initially as I was making them so quickly, but I am happy with them now. The main thing is that the girls are smitten 🙂
The girls sewed and knitted us some little presents. They didn’t have much time, but we were really pleased with what they made.
A double sided gingerbread house for Daddy from our youngest daughter, complete with little gingerbread man and lady and a gingerbread lady for me.
Our eldest daughter knitted me a hairband and made Daddy a cute felt snowman.
We also spent Boxing Day by ourselves because the girls wanted to spend the whole day in pyjamas and we realised we were craving this sort of family time. We saw a couple of friends on the 27th and 28th, which was a nice contrast. We also took our friends for a walk in our locality to look at the lights including a model village that some people had set up in their front porch in aid of charity.
I must say, those model villages do bring out the childhood wonder in me – I could have gazed at all the detail for hours! 🙂
Well, I had better be going as we might be heading to sunnier climes tomorrow. The trip is in doubt at the moment, despite being all packed, as my husband might be coming down with something and my mother can’t go as she is ill (we have been on several winter holidays where my husband has been ill for the entire time – poor him 😦 – so we won’t risk it if he isn’t well tomorrow morning….) So I am still unsure where we will see the New Year in. I wrote about how we celebrate New Year’s Eve here incase anyone is looking for some nice ideas of how to make it more meaningful.
Well, I shall leave you now and wish you all a wonderful New Year 2018! May it be a blessed year for you all.