Hands up who’s started thinking about Christmas yet? No? Come on, it can’t just be me who’s almost finished their Christmas shopping already? You’re lucky I waited until November to post this, I started writing it in September!!
I LOVE Christmas. It really is one of my favourite times of the year. I love winter in general. The cold, crisp days, the snuggly jumpers and woolly hats, the hot chocolate in front of the fire. Christmas shopping is one of my favourite types of shopping, and really gets me in the festive spirit! We chose to go to New York at Thanksgiving because we knew it would be so magical, even though it was freezing!! (The only reason we didn’t go at Christmas was because of getting time off work, but it’s definitely on my bucket list!)
As it was Alfie’s first Christmas last year, I was determined to make it a memorable one. Even though everyone said he won’t remember it, I would! I tried not to go too overboard, but we did lots of special things to celebrate this magical time of year.
Putting up the Christmas decorations is the real start of Christmas for me. We usually do it the last weekend of November, after Craig’s birthday. I bought a few new decorations, including some gorgeous candy cane letters from a lovely facebook shop, Blanchies Fancies. As we were on a budget, I then picked up a few cheaper items from pound shops and the Card Factory. They were all really lovely though considering they were cheap! My husband has promised me that if we are in a new house next year, I can buy all new decorations as a lot of ours were second hand and a bit tatty now. We do have our special tree decorations though that I love – ones that were gifts, ones from our anniversary trip to New York, a wedding one and now a special Jones family one! I can’t wait until Alfie is old enough to make decorations for the tree too.
Last year I took the opportunity to make lots of lovely Christmas related things as I was on maternity leave. I made personalised stockings for Alfie, Daddy and Mummy and also Christmas themed dribble bibs! Although Alfie wasn’t weaning at this point, I made a Christmas themed cushion cover for his IKEA highchair as we were putting him in it at dinner times.
As Christmas is about traditions, Craig and I really want to start our own family traditions. We already have one (a bit of a random one!) When we were growing up, my family always used to have hot sausage rolls and mince pies for breakfast whilst opening our presents. Craig and his family always have pigs in blankets and bucks fizz. So we have combined the two and have sausage rolls and pigs in blankets with bucks fizz for breakfast! We did also make special Santa pancakes last year, but they were a bit of a fail!!
In recent years, the Christmas Eve box has started to become a popular tradition. The idea is you make up a box of goodies to open on Christmas Eve, either in the morning or before you go to bed. I think this is a great tradition, so I started this last year. I put in pjs, a christmas cloth nappy, a dvd, a book, a snuggly blanket and some festive mugs for mummy and daddy! I also bought a personalised christmas decoration for Alfie to hang on the tree. We opened it together and then laid out the milk, cookies and carrot for Santa and Rudolph. I bought this beautiful treats board from The Crafty Giraffe. Alfie was a bit too young to know what was going on, but we got some super cute photos of him laying out his treats.
Some might think this was going a bit over the top, but I really wanted a Christmas photo shoot done. I was so disappointed with our newborn photo shoot, I wanted some gorgeous Christmas photos to treasure. It was great fun and we got some fab photos. Our photographer was very patient with all my ideas, and outfit changes, and Alfie was a dream baby!
Meeting Father Christmas is obviously one of the most important parts of the Christmas celebrations. I knew that Alfie wouldn’t be particularly bothered, but again, I wanted to have that photo of his first experience! We went to a lovely little garden centre with my sister, nephew and Nan. There were animals to meet beforehand, and then we went in and sat with Father Christmas. Alfie was memerised by the twinkling lights around us, and then when Father Christmas held him, Alfie grabbed hold of his beard (note Santa’s nervous look)!! Good thing he was the real deal and it didn’t come off 😉
I really enjoy the run up to Christmas, and liked to have lots of things planned. This year will be different because I’m back at work, but our weekends are already pretty much full with celebrations! Alfie will be 17 months, so a little bit more aware of what is going on around him. I’m looking forward to lots of magical adventures!
Have you got your Christmas plans sorted already? Or are you a last minute, spur of the moment kind of celebrator?
Proud to be linking with: