Christmas 2012

Leading up to Christmas we went to London for a couple of days, not really do shop but just have a look around. I wanted to take the girls to Camden Market. We had a fab time, loved Camden and if anyone had said we could spend the whole day there I would not have believed them, but we did and we loved it πŸ™‚ The girls bought themselves some gorgeous hand painted pumps and a few other bits.

Christmas Eve Eve we went to the cinema to see The Hobbit. Brilliant film πŸ™‚

Christmas Eve morning we visited Wayne’s mum and the girls opened their presents as we would not be seeing them on Christmas day.

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In the afternoon we prepared the veg for Christmas day, baked gingerbread stars and met friends for a walk round the village. Poppy helped set the table for Christmas day and left gingerbread biscuits and milk for Santa and an apple for Rudolph and the girls took themselves off to bed.

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At 1am, just before Wayne and I were going to bed Poppy woke up and stayed awake until 2.30am!! Consequently I didn’t get to sleep until almost 3am and was woken by Poppy at 3.30am with her opening stocking presents!! Thankfully she went back to bed until about 7am which is when we all got up!

Present unwrapping before and after bucks fizz and a cooked breakfast. We all received some really lovely gifts. The girls declared this as their best Christmas ever!! They both received a laptop and a new phone as well as lots of other great things.

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Awww πŸ™‚

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Loved watching Skipper open his own presents πŸ™‚

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And he does a good ‘Churchill’ impression πŸ™‚

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Poppy and Wayne played Chess and we played Carcassonne which is currently my favourite game πŸ™‚

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Mum and Dad came for Christmas dinner and we had fun with some musical crackers. Every cracker contains a different musical whistle and you are supplied with music and a conductor’s baton. One person ‘conducts’ and the others play. A lot more difficult that you would imagine but it made us giggle πŸ™‚ Thank you Colet and Dave πŸ™‚

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Boxing day we were supposed to spend the afternoon with friends but unfortunately they were unwell so we spent the day gaming, and sorting ready for F’s arrival the following day!

With hindsight we would have gone later to London as none of us were particularly in the mood for wandering around and so spent about 2 hrs drinking coffee, chatting and keeping warm! We met F and her family at their hotel at 5pm and then went for a very lovely meal in Covent Garden which was delish πŸ™‚

We said our goodbyes and made our way home with F, her guitar and luggage in tow πŸ™‚

Historyetc – Christmas crafts

Due to a change in the date it was just us and the beans for the Christmas themed History etc!

We got through quite a few crafts and finished of making Christmas pudding πŸ™‚

Matryoshka felt and fimo decorations

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Watercolour painting

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Christmas tin cans, firstly filled with sand/water mix and frozen, mark out your design on paper and tape to the can, using a hammer and nail punch holes following your pattern. Once water/sand has melted, rinse and spray paint, allow to dry, add tealight and ta-da! πŸ™‚

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Christmas pudding, recipe here πŸ™‚

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Great day, thank you πŸ™‚

WedEd – Feeling Festive

I had organised for us to play/sing at one of our local care centres so after an early bring and share lunch and a bit of practise we arrived at the centre.

Everyone played and sung beautifully and their efforts were appreciated. The elderly members joined in with the singing and playing sleigh bells. It was lovely to see them smiling and loving being entertained. The children were given some choccy biscuits as a thank you and we have been asked if we would like to go back again in the spring to do some more singing πŸ™‚ I was very proud of them all, they did a brilliant job πŸ™‚

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Back home we, mostly HH, Em and I, made some gift tags πŸ™‚

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E ended up staying over for a couple of nights, don’t think Poppy and E got out of onesies! Love this photo πŸ™‚

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The run up to Christmas…

I more or less declared ‘half term’ the week leading up to Christmas camp, so the end of November. The girls did do some maths and English but not a great deal else in terms of ‘workbook’ type things. They did lots of crafting and baking though! Unfortunately we have done very little in the way of ‘home made’ gift for Christmas this year, despite me having lots of ideas. I am definitely going to make more of an effort for next year πŸ™‚ Saying that we have made lots of decorations our tree looks lovely, every few days there seems to be something else added that has been created by one of us πŸ™‚

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We did make some cards πŸ™‚

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We visited a friend who has just got a 7 week old St Bernard. Seriously cute πŸ™‚

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Poppy bought herself a guitar πŸ™‚ Just need to get some lessons sorted. Thankfully I have a musically talented cousin who I might be speaking to πŸ˜‰

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We spent a lovely day in London recently. We stayed overnight just outside London, had a lovely meal at Prezzo and the following day got the train to Camden Town. If someone had said that we would be able to spend the WHOLE day in Camden I would not have believed them, but we did. It was fab πŸ™‚ The girls had been saving their money and they got themselves some gorgeous hand painted pumps.

We managed to get a few Christmas presents, there were so many things I would have liked to have got the girls but it makes it difficult when they are with you!

We came home via the cinema to watch The Life Of Pi. A very visually beautiful film πŸ™‚

The girls spent a night at Nana and Papa’s and Wayne went out for a drink with an old school friend which gave me the perfect opportunity to start on the wrapping. It took hours!!!

Today we went to see The Hobbit as a pre-Christmas treat. Loved it πŸ™‚ Can’t believe we have to wait for another year for part 2 of 3 though!!

So the next few days are pretty busy, Christmas eve, quick food shop in the morning, visiting Wayne’s Mum at lunch time and doing present exchanges, home then out for Christmas Eve walk with our friends. Christmas Day we are on our own until late afternoon then my parents arrive, Boxing day at friends for bring and share dinner. Thursday Poppy’s ‘sister’ F arrives from Germany! πŸ˜€

We also have a family Christmas get together, my birthday and our friends from France are coming for a couple of days!

Time for Baileys I think! πŸ™‚

Christmas Camp 2012

We recently returned from a fab Christmas camp πŸ™‚Β  Loved all of it, the friends, the food, the location,the hostel, the chatter, the cakes, the crafting, just everything πŸ™‚

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The hostel layout really worked, a huge games room with tv, pool table and lots of sofas for the kids to relax and play in and a small ‘teachers room’ with sofa and chairs and a dining room (though these were a little on the small side but you can’t have everything)Β adjoining the kitchen for the adults to relax, eat cake and chat in πŸ™‚

Music rigged up, kitchen ready for Christmas πŸ™‚

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The hostel isΒ within walking distance to Ironbridge and had two lovely walksΒ and visitedΒ theΒ Iron Bridge museum πŸ™‚

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There was also a very good chippery πŸ™‚

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We hardly saw the girls all week! They had such a lovely time and we completely lost them when the Hamptons arrived for a visit, I don’t think they moved from the sofa forΒ 2 days!!

The Christmas music was fab, I enjoyed playing the recorder πŸ™‚Β  There are certainly many talented musicians among us! πŸ™‚ The kids play and talent show went really well, they were all brilliant πŸ™‚ Especially loved sotp C’s song and the Gangnam Style finale πŸ™‚

Crafting was mostly done by the adults, including some of the Dads πŸ™‚

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I finished my very first crocheted monster which did somersaults but has since lost the ability to do so! πŸ™‚

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Katy did a great job coordinating Christmas dinner and it was good to see the Dad’s in the kitchen too πŸ™‚

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With a little help from Skye and SB πŸ™‚

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‘Christmas Day’ was full of great food, lovely festive music, fabulous Secret Santa’s. I loved my home made game of Quarto, thanks HH πŸ™‚ It is beautiful and has been played with lots already πŸ™‚

Quarto

I was really pleased with the way my home made chai latte turned out, I had to try some obviously πŸ˜‰ The recipe can be found here πŸ™‚

Chai Latte

I also made some Christmas decorations and biscuits πŸ™‚

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Wayne loved his gift of spicy nuts and enjoyed putting his together πŸ™‚

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Poppy made (and received!!) a gorgeous pencil/make up brush case πŸ™‚

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Skye made a lovely fabric heart and a fimo necklace and bracelet but I don’t seem to have a photo

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There was also the annual dumpling tossing πŸ˜‰

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Big thanks to everyone for making it so fab and hope you all have a wonderful Christmas xx

It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas

This past week has been mostly preparing and finishing our secret santas for our forthcoming Christmas camp. I am really pleased with mine, now that i have tested it! I thought i might have to resort to a plan b but it seems to have worked out fine πŸ™‚ Just hope the receipent appreciates it!! Will post pics sometime after camp πŸ™‚

I set the girls a task to use pinterest to find inspiration for some Christmas/Winter art. I love their designs πŸ™‚

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Skye also made these very cute mini fimo snowmen.

mini fimo snowmen

In between all the art and craft the girls have done some bookwork, english, maths and geography πŸ™‚

Unfortunately Wayne didn’t manage to get the girls to their arts award session this week as they were sat in traffic for ages 😦 A real shame as they were supposed to be finishing off their animation which they didn’t get time to do at their last animation session 😦 Hopefully after camp they can get that sorted somehow. Sadly their arts awards sessions will not be continuing in the new year which is a shame. Instead I think they will be running Arts workshops every few weeks.

What else?? We had a lovely evening with The Manor Borns last Saturday, even though we were an hour late!! Sorry!! M cooked up a delicious spinach and ricotta canelloni πŸ™‚ We drove home in the pouring rain and the following morning woke up to flooding! 😦

We took a trip into Cambridge yesterday, we all needed a few new clothes and bits. The girls both wanted a second piercing in one ear so as an early Christmas treat they had that done πŸ™‚

We had some lunch and then headed to the Mill Road Winter Fair πŸ™‚ It was fab πŸ™‚ There were people outside their shops selling delicious food of every variety, we had some yummy chickpea curry with samosa and bhaji πŸ™‚ It felt like being on holiday, there were so many smells and sounds.

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I don’t think I have ever been to this part of Cambridge, maybe once to a restaurant for a friends birthday but not to browse or shop, I hadn’t realised how fab it is!!! We visited the Mosque which was open to the public and the girls had I had beautiful henna designs painted onto our hands. Unfortunately once they had dried, mine didn’t work as well as the girls but they are lovely πŸ™‚ I think I would enjoy doing henna, its like zentangle doodling πŸ™‚ The designs were so different, apparently each area has a different style, mine was Arabic πŸ™‚

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Henna

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Gog Magog Molly were also there but didn’t spot G or D. Skye really wants to join Gog Magog but unfortunately they practice night clashes with something else 😦

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Gig Magog Molly

Looking forward to the next few weeks, Wayne finished work on Thursday so it will be good to have him around (I think!) πŸ™‚ We are off to camp today so I guess I should pack! Not even thought about Christmas shopping but that will wait πŸ˜‰