Thursday, 6 December 2012

and 3,4,5

Where has the week gone?  It's been crazy busy and crazy cold.  So much for my plan to blog our daily countdown, daily.

Day 3:

Speaks for itself does day 3.  A simple but hugely enjoyable activity.
The perfect end to a busy, cold day and 'up there' in the spirit of a simpler Christmas.

Day 4:

This was an interesting one because it took C a moment to get into that she needed to find the water cooler *for real*.  She, and sometimes 'we', plays a lot of imaginary games with invisible objects so when I said "you need to find the water cooler", she launched into such an exaggerated search of the immediate vicinity that Sherlock Holmes would have been proud.  When I said "there's a present hidden there", she shot off down the hall and found the chocolate lollies that I had hidden inside.

One of the other "hiding place" cards I have is the front room cushion, which is big enough to hide a book behind.  There are more of these "treasure hunts" coming up and I'm sure she will need less prompting next time.


Ingredients:  Cookie cutters, fingers and a bottle top; acrylic paint; glitter ( I LOVE glitter); brown paper.

And another mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows if you fancy.

 I think it looks cute.  Just like the painter.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Our day 2 (everyone else's 3!)

Today we made paper chains. Eventually.

It took a little while for me to figure out that varying the amount of spit didn't make a jot of difference and that I didn't need  the glue stick.

The design has been changed.

Nowadays there is just a little square of glue on one end that was nigh impossible to detect without close scrutiny.  Sticking problem now solved (although C preferred by this stage to still use the glue stick) we set about assembling our chains.

I haven't made chains for many years and it was very therapeutic with quick results (essential for a toddler - and me!).

Armed with enough chains to get us started, we set about getting the tree in situ, arranging the fairy lights and setting the tree train up for another year!

This box is heavy Grandad

A dry run

Christmas Express - late, just like the real thing!
"Choo choo" and paper chains
C's chains on her count-down tree

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Let the countdown begin...

We have forsaken the chocolate advent calendars and gone for a kind of "combine-what-needs-doing-with-loves-doing-with-giving" calendar.  I was busily a-cutting and a-sticking and a-gluing (ouchy ouch, hot glue guns and me don't really go) to get ready for our "countdown tree".

Luckily, C is unable to comprehend time, and thus the fact that there should be 24 sleeps and "things to do", on the tree instead of 23.  Ho hum, next year.

The small fake tree in the playroom has envelopes hanging from the branches with a little card inside.  Each card gives the activity, or shows a photo of the hiding place of a small gift (e.g. I have taken a photograph of one of the lounge cushions), for that day.  My two used to love doing treasure hunts so this is just a variation on that really.

Today was our Day 1.........

So off we went to Elveden Estates for a wonderfully festive couple of hours out to pick our Christmas tree.  Each year, volunteers and their Newfoundlands pull your tree to your car on little carts for the cost of a  donation, which then gets split between local charities. Some years the dogs have sported beetle boppers or fairy wings - I saw one in a tutu this year but missed the photo opportunity.  The dogs appear to love the fuss and people love seeing them so it's win win.

We had friends for dinner; jobs to catch up on; and pork to mince so it's just as well that we are including deocrating the tree as part of our countdown, with a heavy emphasis on homemade decorations.  I would like to say it's for sentimental or environmental reasons but actually it's all part of my 'simpler christmas' plan.  Tomorrow's "count down" actvity?  Making paper chains to decorate the tree with of course!

Happy December!