Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Is....

sleeping under the Tree
Home
 
Swimming
Dress Ups
Myer Windows
 
Christmas Parades
Gingerbread houses
Putting up the Tree
Christmas Dinners
Nativity
 
City Trees
Christmas Eve Pyjama's
 
And Family and Presents galore tomorrow!
 
 
Have a wonderful Christmas Everyone!!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas Card Movie

video



I've finished just in time!

{had a few technical issues - my video footage was sideways!}

But I fixed it and Our 2012 Christmas Card Movie is done!

I've waited YEARS to have a child with no teeth at Christmas time.

Finally it's happened.

So of course... this HAD to be the idea for this year.

Enjoy!

And a VERY MERRY Christmas from our family to yours.


Previous years here:
2011 - Putting up the Tree
2010 - Let it Snow
2008 - Nativity

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Worries of Christmas Past


It seems each December I come up with some worry.

You know.... just to balance all that cheer out.

Things like:

The dueling Christmases that exist in my head
Will it be enough?
The impossiblity of a perfect Christmas
Black hole week and that horrible after feeling

{yes go back and read them }


Last night I was wrapping presents on the bed when The Mr came home from a evening meeting.


He was like... what IS all this STUFF!?

Ummm Christmas presents?? We do have four kids that equals ALOT of stuff to buy ya know


Yeah one or two things each ...... he trailed off.


Ok so I have been buying stocking stuffers since about September.....

It is possible that there is a little too much of the little plasticy fun stuff.....


I've been thinking ever since talking to a mum at school who stated they didn't do Christmas.

Why I asked? She felt as they practiced no religion it would be hypocritical to celebrate Christmas
(I said you do realise probably 80% celebrating don't do the religious thing?)
and that she is very against all the consumerism and waste around Christmas.

I actually really admire her for her stance. She made me really think. Asses how much I do.
{because I really agree on the waste part}
I personally would not be able to stand against social norms of presents, fun, lights, crafts, christmas trees, Christmas dinner etc. She really did NOTHING that is associated with Christmas.
Hardcore to me. 

I'm but a sheep. A follower. Easily led by shiny pretty things.

I've also heard of religious people who opt for nothing but church services, kindness to others and choose to opt out of all secular parts of christmas .

I always wonder if I do too much. People have said it. Over compensation? Wasteful of resources to be buying up crafts, decorations, foods to celebrate for the whole month. Do my kids REALLY need all of these traditions? Do they need more than one present?

What would it be like to keep things really simple.

Maybe one year I'll try. I tell myself that will be easier in the teen years? They won't want to do cheesy family traditions by then. Simple will be easy right? On a side note I watched that Christmas with the Krank's movie where they try to cancel christmas to save money and go on a cruise. It just seems there are just so many things that you can't cancel!

Theres always that balance.

Too much?... Too little?

Cheer or Grinch

Take the parts you love ... leave the parts you don't?

Throw other peoples expectations to the side?



One Day I'll do it.

{I'm dreaming}

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Grandparents Christmas Dinner

Our favourite tradition



Last night after it was done I was even thinking about next years menu.

Food was delish

company wonderful

Kids with Gifts

Watching slideshows of the years photos

And I got my first napkin rings!! {I've been on the lookout for a while!}



The Menu
 
Creamy Roasted Parsnip Soup
***
Chicken Kebabs with Mango Peanut Lime Sauce
***
Beef fillet on bed of creamy mash, asparagus and jus
***
Lemon Curd Tartlet, Gingerbeer Chocolate Cake, Meringue with Rasberries
 
 
One of my girls is learning how to send emails. During the busy preparation of the day I recieved this email which made my heart melt - The subject line said 'sup'
hi mum it's me!! I think you've put alot of effort into cleaning cooking and getting redy for grand perants dinner I bet tonight will be awesome it's gonna be so fun like it always is. lol oh and I'm happy it's holidays the holidays is fun. but when are we going to the movies with dad or you?
please send a email back to me
 
 
When the kids are little and they're tired and its hard to organize and cook a fancy dinner and keep the house clean and look after them it sometimes seems so hard to do these things. Then the kids grow and they know they've had 8 years of this tradition and they know it in their hearts, its part of them and they become helpful {sort of}and things seem easier {apart from the hot weather and sweating it out in the kitchen} then they want to be part of things and their idea of decorating is vastly different from yours and you have to step back from being OCD balanced decorating mum and let them make daisy chains and paper trees, while they forget about garish tinsel they had taken from school with grand plans for it. You let all children use crystal cups you got for a wedding present 14 years ago and they love it and the glasses live another year! And great grandma's send along really annoying presents which make you laugh cause only great grandma's have the authority to give annoying presents and we have to grin and bear it as thats what family is all about.
 
And we love it.
 
 
 

Previous Grandparent Dinners found here:

2011
2010
2009
2008

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Stocking Pinata {A Christmas Tip}



It's not a party without a

PINATA!

Last year the Candy Cane pinata was a hit!


I think Christmas pinatas are my favourite.

So many easy shapes to make


This year I'm doing a stocking shape

Materials:
Large cardboard (a box works fine)
Masking Tape
PVA/White Glue
Crepe Paper



Trace 2 basic outlines of a stocking in cardboard and cut out. {Mine is about 50cm tall}

Cut a long rectangle to join around the edges (Or two long rectangles)

Bend the rectangle around the stocking shape taping as you go.

When attached, then place the other stocking shape on top and tape it down too.

Leave a small gap at the top to put the treats in


'Fringe' the crepe paper by cutting 3/4 way into the paper.

Cut several layers at once to save time!

Glue strips down in layers starting at the bottom. Each layer covers the one before.

Keep going till all sides are covered


Fill with lollies, glitter, cut paper, small toys


The hard bit is attaching a rope. Fasten a hook or loop onto the back to then attach a rope to.
Alternatively tie a rope all around it :)

Make sure it is well attached {Glued/ Taped down}
This is a weak spot and often where pinata's break.
It wrecks the fun to have a pinata fall down before the lollies come out.

Hang your pinata in a tree, in the garage, over some sort of post.

Then HIT your PINATA.

Hopefully we will be sharing ours with cousins on Christmas Day.




Ha. I just realised where I took this photo. Note: DO NOT hit pinata's in front of windows :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Melbourne




I've probably had dates 2-6 by going away with the Mr for the weekend :) I might make 12!!

There has to be some perk of having your husband travel interstate weekly for work for 6 months.

Right?! Right?!

That would be a flight business class to Melbourne and back thanks to frequent flyer points

and hotel 'cause he was already there.

and major props to grandparents for babysitting {I'm forever indebted}


Most times we go out, The Mr and I are together {of course}

there have been very few times where I have travelled somewhere to meet him

{see another time here}


But I can't describe that feeling after being apart a week, then travelling hours flying then taking two buses then finding the hotel and walking into that lobby.....

and seeing him sitting there waiting for me...

I literally bounded over and threw myself in his arms

I think I may have done the chick-flick lift of the leg thing

...so if you havent done it before, I totally recommend travelling to {even if its just across town} and meeting up with your other half somewhere.

Magical.




Now on to Melbourne. I've been to Victoria before and seen several places but never to Melbourne City so it was exciting for me. So many Trees! lovely old buildings! and churches! and christmas decorations! and tiny restaurants and cafes everywhere! Melbourne felt so safe and vibrant. I felt more unsafe in the evenings when I was in Newcastle and Sydney than I ever did in Melbourne. Positive vibes the whole time and not a single dodgy vibe even once... I was impressed.

We played it pretty easy. Lots of walking, looking at buildings and churches and shop browsing and my first ever ride on a tram.

Not much else.

so onto photo overload: Buildings and more buildings, churches, gardens, food, trams

 
 



I even took money to buy myself something but alas didn't really find a single thing!?!
{whats wrong with me?}
Things are either too expensive, too big to carry back, have similar shops in Brisbane, beautiful but where would I put it?, why? {I talk myself out of purchases all.the.time}
I know I know so silly and I regretted not getting myself something on my last holiday with The Mr but hey I suppose the memories are the most important thing.
I find shopping on holiday really difficult for some reason {and I'm sans kids! what the?}


Always lovely to take a few days time out with my darling Mr.

Where to next????

Monday, December 3, 2012

12 Dates of Christmas {A Christmas Tip}



Ever since hearing about this idea I've loved it!   see here

Perfect if you are a young married or child free couple or your children are grown enough to look after themselves.

I had plans to really try to attemp to achieve this goal starting end of November with two dates a week.. but then my husband announces he will be working in Melbourne for 3 weeks. Maybe I should have kept those babysitters I had lined up and taken myself on a date ;)



So ...I highly doubt I'll get even four dates accomplished but its the thought that counts!

Christmas is so often about the kids that the adults get forgotten.

I think this would be a really nice way for adults to enjoy the Christmas season.

It would even make a great gift idea to yourself or to your other half!!

12 Dates!! I have a lot less than that per year! What a wonderful gift it would be.


Our first date of Christmas was dinner and a production of Handels Messiah



Some other ideas - both expensive and inexpensive, both out and at home (for those with little kids)


Going present shopping together
Seeing Christmas lights
Attending a Christmas Production {Nutcracker, Choirs, Carols by Candlelight}
Wrapping Presents together and sharing some treats and nice drink
Writing Cards
Dancing by Candlelight to Christmas music
Watching a Christmas movie
Doing Service together
Go Carolling
Preparing Christmas Dinner Menu {The Mr cooks ours so I love to talk menu with him}
Pixie Drops {leaving treats of friends or others doorsteps}
Evening Walk around the neighbourhood
Get a photo taken together with Santa
Attend a church service
Visit the City Tree and Decorations
Out for dessert and a hot chocolate


Have you got any other ideas that would make a perfect little date night at Christmas?


"oh the first date of christmas my true love gave to me..."



Rocking around the Christmas Tree





video

Had a most wonderful afternoon and evening putting up the tree with the girls and The Mr.

Every year gets easier.

They are more willing to help and excited and don't tire as easy.

I just love it. It was pretty magical this year.

We put up our tree, had sparkling apple and lindt chocolate and then sat around our candle ring and held our first week spiritual advent. Finished the night off reading Christmas books under the twinkling lights and one child insisted on falling asleep under it.

Be still my heart. Best afternoon I've had in a while.


I loved our Christmas Movie last year which was a stop animation of us putting up the tree.

I have another Movie in mind this year but just couldn't resist doing it again.

{The absolute easiest way to make a little video! Take LOTS of photos of you doing something and upload them in movie maker - change the timing setting to 20 seconds and you have a little movie! Add some music and title and voila you're good to go. I made this one pretty fast!}



The tree up...  IT'S CHRISTMAS TIME!!



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