Tis the Season…to be over

Yes, once again, I probably sound very much like Scrooge or even The Grinch. There’s just something about the silly season. Every year I always feel compelled to write something around Christmas time. I don’t know why or what it is, but I seem to find something to talk about. Maybe it’s my excitement at soon not having to find somewhere new for “Jo Jo” our magical elf to be or not having to worry about opening anymore advent calendar days. Don’t get me wrong I love how excited my girls are about Christmas, but I find it more stressful than anything! But as much as Christmas can be full on and indeed stressful, it’s important to remember the magical side for my girls.

Their faces on Christmas morning when they open their presents from the big guy or even the countdown itself creates a massive sense of excitement, for everyone. I just wish their behaviour was as good as their excitement in the lead up to December 25. It’s like they know. That deep down they can get away with anything!

Threatening that Santa is watching does absolutely…..NOTHING! I can threaten until the cows come home and it’s all for nothing. Because as parents, we all know it makes no difference, we will still hand over all the presents. Why? Well probably because we have taken the time to shop for them and wrap them and sneak them under the tree on Christmas Eve, it’s a lot of effort to throw it all away. And money too! Plus it is worth it watching their reaction to see if they actually get what they asked for. I’m glad that my girls are still young enough to ask for realistic…ahem affordable…present options, haha!

Then once it’s over and so begins another year. I know I’m very “Meh” about it all. Don’t get me wrong, there is a part of me that loves Christmas and celebrating and then welcoming another year. The memories we create and the new traditions we start are all a big part of it. Maybe I enjoy getting a few presents too. After all I’m still a bit of a kid at heart. Plus I do like to get in the Santa photo as well. While my girls are big enough to do it themselves, I look at it as a great opportunity to put a nice dress on and get a photo taken with my girls that isn’t a selfie! I don’t go as far as sitting on Santa’s lap though, that’s definitely pushing it!

While the magic is still there and they definitely do still believe (I know that’ll change soon enough) I’ll do my best to be a little less ho-hum and more ho ho ho! Some festive cheer is all you need right?! Maybe a sprinkle of magic dust too??! It really is the most wonderful time of the year to spend with family and friends. However you choose to celebrate or not celebrate Christmas, I hope it’s a good one for you, your kids and the rest of your family. May you enjoy some of that festive cheer and some tasty treats along the way as well. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Merry Whatever

Bah Humbug. Don’t worry I’m not really Ebenezer Scrooge. I have my moments though, especially with the silly season now upon us. I do the same thing every year and I still haven’t learnt from it. I try to think of ways to spread Christmas present shopping throughout the year. But it never happens because birthdays seem to win every time. Then come late November, the mad rush is on. Every. Single. Time.

I always hope the next year will be different, but nope. That’s Christmas for you, magical and magically draining. Of your funds and your energy. But somewhere, deep down, I still have a love of what the festive is about and watching my girls get all excited, adds that little bit of brightness I sometimes need.

If there’s one thing I feel have somewhat mastered, it’s the Santa visit. As in getting it done early to beat the crowds. I still have one child that probably would have enjoyed pulling teeth more. Anyone would think I was sending her into the land of stinky cheese, the way she recoiled upon seeing the big jolly man in the red suit. We got our Santa photo done with one smiling child sitting perched on Santa’s knee like she’s the Queen. Her younger sister, on the other hand, is quite cheery and settled but on mummy’s lap, next to Santa. Maybe next year?! Secretly I love it, takes me back to my childhood. I’m kidding!! I love it because it’s memories I’m making with my girls and it’s not going to be forever. One day their innocence will fade with the realisation that all is not as it seems and some characters in their lives aren’t as real as they thought. But for now they’re as real as you and me!

But there’s one part of the “fun” of Christmas we hadn’t yet taken part in – Elf on a Shelf. Now, I’ve sat back and watched many a friend explore the fun of taking elf antics to new highs and many lows with some grumbling and groaning as they struggle to find a new spot every day for their Christmas friend. Well now I have joined this illustrious circle of “fun”. We may be a few days into December and we’re going okay, but something tells me by December 20 I may have had enough and JoJo our friendly elf may need some well-earned rest, haha!

I may sound negative about the whole Christmas celebration, but I do love it. I love the present giving, catching up with family and friends, enjoying food and just having a good time. Having two cheeky monkeys get excited about it all, just makes me smile thinking about it. They make everything more fun. Okay well, not everything. But things that remind you about being a kid again. And I can’t wait to see their beautiful smiles and wide excited eyes on Christmas morning. It makes staying up late the night before to prepare presents, ahem I mean making sure Santa’s presents arrive okay, all the more fun.

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, however you choose to spend it, enjoy!
Until next time….

‘Tis the season

Ho Ho…No. That’s right I said no, so let’s just say I’m Ebenezer Scrooge. I usually look forward to Christmas, it’s an exciting time of the year, especially with kids. But I’m not so keen on Christmas this year, I’m not feeling it, can we just fast forward to the new year already? Every time an ad related to Christmas comes on TV I want to throw things at the screen. When I saw Christmas lights switched on in November, I may have said things I can’t repeat here. And don’t even get me started on Christmas carols, my retail days still haunt me!

I know it’s not that far away but I swear the lead up to the festive season begins earlier every year. Maybe it’s just because I’m getting older, the novelty wears off just a bit more every year. And of course, at the age of four, Miss Izzie now knows how to look through a toy catalogue and tell you exactly what she wants. Mostly Frozen themed items it seems. It’s a pity she doesn’t quite understand they actually cost money! But she has an answer for most things (much like her mother, so I’m told) so I’m sure she would work something out.

There’s something about the crazy power behind Christmas. I bravely (or stupidly) hit the shops the other day along with what seemed like thousands of other people who had the same idea. With three weeks to go everyone is madly trying to find that special (or just any gift) to hand over. What probably made me even more stupid was I took the girls with me. Big mistake. Huge. Along with the many other harassed and unhappy shoppers looking for the “ideal” gift, I was also busy repeating things like; “no”, “move before you get run over by a trolley”, “stop asking for things”, “no, you can’t have that”, “stop crying because I said no”, “yes mummy is cranky” and even “do I need to have a chat with Santa?”.

Speaking of the big guy. We dropped by to see Santa at the shops a couple of weeks ago. Yep, I’m one of those mums who likes to get it out of the way before the big rush begins. So, I guess I really should be grateful Christmas preparation begins in November for that reason alone but you know beggars can’t be choosers. Anyway, both girls were pretty excited about the prospect of seeing the big fat…sorry jolly…man in the red suit, until we got to the front of the line. From a distance he’s not so scary but up close it’s a different story.

After waiting for Santa to “feed the reindeer” (we turned up at swap time) we were ready to go and then the tears started. Miss Izzie was fine (thankfully for the second year running) and even sat on Santa’s knee telling him what she had been doing and what she wanted for Christmas (something Frozen themed I believe) but Miss Phoebe wasn’t having a bar of old Santa. So lucky I dressed up for the occasion and joined in the photo fun, for the fifth year in a row. I must admit I love this year’s photo (shock horror) and none of us are even looking at the camera which makes it even more natural, with Phoebe giving Santa a half-hearted but very wary high five, haha! I’m crossing my fingers next year is the year they get the magical photo without me! I can only hope right?!

But I must admit the excitement my girls exude when it comes to Christmas is a little catchy, at times. Maybe by Christmas day I might be feeling a little more on the Ho Ho Ho side. Well, I’m going to try anyway. Until then, if you still have shopping to do I wish you all the luck in the world, I’m pretty much done and glad to be! Until it all begins again…..

Magic and mayhem

“Santa….presents…ho, ho, ho and Merry Christmas”.

These words have been flowing from the mouth of our beautiful Miss Izzie on a daily basis in the past week.

The Christmas spirit is well and truly alive in our house this year.

It’s her third Christmas but the first time she’s paid any attention to what’s been going on.

She helped us put the tree up on December 1 and has spent many days “redecorating” it since.

We also made the trek to the shops to see the jolly man in the big red suit and score a memento of the occasion.

A very excited Izzie babbled about visiting Santa the whole way there, until we got within two feet of the big guy.

Let’s just say my hopes of a cute photo of the two girls with Santa turned into a rather cheesy shot of the four of us snuggled up to him instead!

Poor Izzie was a bit freaked out while Miss Phoebe slept through the whole debacle!

I guess there’s always next year….or we could start a family tradition of Santa photos, haha!
I’m sure my husband is already running for the hills at the thought!

All the photo drama aside, it is exciting to once again relive the magic of Christmas, Santa and all that comes with it.

I must admit I felt like a bit of a grinch for many years before the girls came along.

Now I’m starting to feel like a kid again.

It’s brought a lively nature into our house talking about Santa and presents.

But the best part about now being the adult is using the threat of no presents for naughty behaviour.

The hard part has been not laughing while issuing the threat.

Not that it’s made a huge difference, with our cheeky toddler laughing at us instead.

As if the presents won’t appear, Santa has been busy shopping (sorry the elves have been making the gifts) and wrapping for weeks, haha!

But now the big day is almost here.

Santa’s treats are ready with beer, milk and cookies taking pride of place near our tree with Miss Izzie’s toy Santa “watching” to make sure the real Santa gets them!

I think daddy may have already finished the beer assembling one of the presents and I may just need a biscuit to get me through (haha!).

Merry Christmas to everyone out there!

May your day be filled with love, laughter and if you’re lucky enough little ones filled with excitement and wonder!

Christmas morning is going to be so much fun with a sea of wrapping paper to waddle through…..I can’t wait!

It’s a shame the cleaning fairy can’t add some magic to make it all disappear in the bin at the end…..

Tis the season

Today was a day of achievement, we finished the Christmas shopping!!

And with just over a week to go until Christmas Day, I’m thanking my lucky stars.

It may be one day a year, but it’s a day that sends us all into a frenzied buying panic in the weeks leading up to December 25.

And if I’ve just reminded you that you’re fast running out of shopping days, I’m going to also say the shops are only going to get busier….good luck with that!

I’ve always loved the excitement of Christmas and this year feels that little bit more exciting with a cheeky one-year-old in tow.

Not that she has any idea what’s going on.

She keeps pointing at the Christmas tree, which for the first two weeks she was pulling decorations off and throwing like tennis balls.

But now she’s discovered there’s presents under the tree….mummy definitely needs eyes in the back of her head!

In keeping with the Christmas spirit we made the trek to see Santa a couple of weeks ago.

It didn’t go so well!

Last year she was the perfect angel, didn’t bat an eyelid, at all! At just a couple of months old our little darling slept through her first Santa photo.

This year was definitely the exact opposite.

As Santa made his way back to his chair, ringing a bell, Miss Izzie was all smiles and watching intently.

As soon as we got within two feet of the jolly man in the red suit, there were tears.

Santa went in for a high five, there were more tears, the same deal when he offered to hand over the bell.

So in order to get our prized photo, I did the same thing my own beautiful mum did for me with my Santa photos when I was little, I jumped in too and joined our very own little Rudolph.

It seems the apple did not fall far from the tree on this one!

Fingers crossed next year’s photo has a better outcome!

I’m hoping my excitement for the festive season passes on to my gorgeous girl and I look forward to when she wants to look at Christmas light displays with me.

I also can’t wait to unwrap her presents next week…because let’s face it she will only want to rip the paper and play with the boxes!

Reflecting on recent national and international events, this is one of those times of year where family really comes into its own.

Keep the hugs rolling and continue to make happy memories, with a thought for those going through tough times.

Good luck with the last minute present shopping if you’re yet to battle the crowds!

Now I’m just going to check whether the presents need to be re-wrapped…