Monday, 20 January 2014

December Days

This year the festive period passed in incredibly relaxed family focused splendour in our household.  We have very few family traditions around Christmas time but fully embrace the opportunity to actively enjoy our time together.  My mum came to stay with us and arrived on the stormiest day (in the SW of England) of 2013.  Bless her - by the time she had made the journey she needed another hour in a chair, cradling a cup of tea before she returned to her normal colour! 

Little Man played a wise man in the school nativity.  It was a moment to treasure as this will be the last year he gets to perform the nativity.  Bless him - he did speak so clearly and concentrated so very hard.

We hosted a get together for Ben's side of the family.  I picked up a multiple games table in the charity shop for a bargainous £15 which I put in the shed for a timely Christmas present.  This party seemed the perfect opportunity to give this to the children- a full day of snooker, table football and table tennis ensued!  Such fun!

On Christmas Eve we went to the village church to take part in the Christingle service.  It was the first time I've been with the children since Little Lady was a baby.  They thoroughly enjoyed the service - Ben is not religious and didn't come so I was really glad of Mum's company.  I love the message of Christingle and the participatory element of this service. 

We managed to avoid eating the sweets (which represent the seasons and all things good God gives us) and they held centre stage on our Christmas table.

The elves delivered new pyjamas on Christmas Eve and suitable snacks were left out for Father Christmas and the reindeer.  On Christmas Eve morning, the children decided to write their letters to FC.  Would you believe it? I managed to encourage them to understand that FC had probably already wrapped and decided what he was to give them considering for the previous 12 hours he'd been delivering to children in New Zealand and Australia etc. so wouldn't have the opportunity to alter anything. 

On the morning, not one item on their lists was in their stockings.  Gladly, it completely didn't matter.  They were so very thrilled with each little package.  They laughed and tore, hugged and skipped.  Magic.

The kiddies had crafted a couple of surprise gifts for us - sew lovely!!

Christmas Lunch was gorgeous, comprising a roast chicken with all the trimmings - can you believe the price of turkey at this time of year!?! We all ate too much (but lots of veggies too!) and it was sooo yummy!

I extended our kitchen table and made a makeshift bench for the children to sit at so we could all sit in our new kitchen.  There's my girl - "Cheers - ing" with a Yorkshire pudding!!

It felt very festive with all our warm white fairy lights (I have to confess they are not coming down from my dresser and are now a permanent fixture!)

Our December Days continued in a Lego making frenzy, craft and cake making and a surprise visit to Paulo's Circus.  Little Man helped Paulo & a Clown with some tricks - confident as anything in front of the audience.  Hubby returned to work quickly after the Christmas celebrations but mum remained plus he was off on the weekends so our days passed in happy contentment. 

I do love the time between Christmas and New Year.  We're not at all materialistic either pre or post "the big day" and our time is very family focused.

As a family we have little expectation; a mixture of playing, eating, crafting and relaxing in PJ's is the order of our days!  Oh yes, that is an eye mask holding Little Ladies hair back - she struggles to sleep and a mask is a real aid for her!!

Its all over far too quickly - the inevitable return to school and routine ensues.  I'm not a fan of the New Year.  January holds both hope and uncertainty for us this year especially.  The Hubby was told in November that is job won't exist in 2014 and he will find out by the end of the month whether he will be made redundant or redeployed.  Either way, his level of job is removed and thus either no job or less money is the result.  Great.

I shall try to keep this space all fluffy and positive but there are definitely some hard times ahead. Christmas and its resulting quality time together was a welcome distraction for us all.  The magic that children find in this time of year is enough to raise the lowest of spirits!!  In the interim, we shall trust in the path that we are on and believe that ALL will be well.

Happy New Year to all my wonderful Bloggy Followers and Friends - here's to a fab one!!
J9 x


  1. Hi Janine! It's so nice to read an update on all of you. It looks like you had a lovely holiday season with your family. I am very sorry to hear about your husband's job. That must be stressful. I wish him all the luck with a new job soon. I emailed you to say this, but we really appreciated the package you sent to us. I was so surprised. Thank you again. I plan to share about it on my blog soon.

    1. Oh Thistle, you are so very welcome!! I'm trying to resolve to post more frequently - I have so many drafted posts I just need to get to that extra step of actually publishing them!! At least then it won't be a month between posts!! Well, that's the aim anyway! J9 x

  2. I will add you in late Wednesday night for the GYB party;)

    1. Oh thank you Vicki - I've met some fab people already through link ups and this seems fun!! Thank you! J9 x