Thursday, 27 December 2012

Merry and Bright

We've just returned from three days spent with John's parents in Durham. On Christmas Eve I gave the children an early tea, packed up the car, then collected John from the station. The children and I made John listen to Christmas music all the way there - we had lots of fun, but John, strangely, does not share our love of festive music - and we arrived around seven. Stockings were hung and sherry and mince pies were left out for Father Christmas (to be consumed later by Grandad).


I woke around five on Christmas morning and had such a flutter of excitement in my tummy - I could not wait for the children to wake and see that Father Christmas had been. Silly, I know, but I was just desperate to see the expressions on their faces. Thankfully for everyone, I went back to sleep and Bella and Angus woke just after seven. The joyful chaos of unwrapping presents in bed began. It was the first Christmas that Angus was really aware of the notion of Father Christmas, and his expression was priceless. It was as though he couldn't quite believe he'd come, and that he'd remembered what Angus had asked for (a toy car, chocolate, and a torch).


Downstairs, after breakfast, new toys were assembled, examined and played with.



Father Christmas was kind to the adults too...(thank you, John).


Three tables were pushed together to make enough seating for thirteen. Many cakes were eaten and toys admired. I love that Sylvanian Families canal boat Bella is playing with - I want to move into it, with it's hanging baskets of flowers, range cooker and bunk beds.


It was a noisy and crowded affair, and all the more fun for it. I have to confess that I loved not having to host or cook Christmas lunch. It was liberating not to have to think about the planning and organisation, as much as the huge amount of actual cooking on the day. John's mum did a rather fantastic job - she fed eight adults and five children a three course meal, offered a choice of three desserts, and even had a nut roast ready for a vegetarian guest. She excels at feeding everyone and being generally warm, welcoming and accommodating to everyone who visits their house. I left well fed (and quite possibly a few pounds heavier, but lets not dwell on that), laden with lovely gifts and with a new biscuit recipe to try out.

I hope you had a happy Christmas too. What did you do? What did you eat? Was it a huge extended family affair of something a little quieter? I would love to hear all about your Christmases too. 

28 comments:

mags said...

Lovely to hear about your Christmas. The satchel is gorgeous. I like the Silvanian windmill too (its one of my great regrets that I am too old to have had a rabbit and hedgehog family myself!) .... and a new pack of plasticene ... great! Had a good day myself - just Dan and me xx

Yvonne said...

I LOVE that Sylvanian canal boat!! I never knew they made toys like that. I live on a canal boat so I'm going to have to get one for my granddaughter and stash it away until she's old enough to play with it (she's only 7 months)

Cheryl said...

Sounds wonderful, and gorgeous gifts - love the playmobil goodies and your new satchel is fab! Happy Christmas :)

dolly mixtures said...

A lovely full-on family Christmas and your children are at just the perfect age to make it really magical. Thanks for sharing - enjoy your beautiful satchel xo

Andrea @ little buckles said...

It sounds perfect! Satchel envy! x

Greer said...

It looks and sounds lovely. Merry Christmas to you, Gillian!

Noelle the dreamer said...

It sounded the perfect Christmas get together and how nice of your mum in law! It was a very quiet Christmas for us on the Pacific NW coast but we had a few snowflakes for Christmas morning! Pere Noel was indeed very thoughtful and Boxing day just the way we like it (no shopping!!)
All the best to you and yours and Happy New Year,

Vintage Sheet Addict said...

Perfect Christmas I think! It's so magical when they are so little! :) x

rachel said...

Beautiful zatchel.

Sounds like a perfect christmas. Much as I love planning and preparing and cooking I do long not to be the host one year.

Bungalowgirl said...

Just found your blog recently via Ada at vintage sheet addict. Love your photos and appreciation of colour. I think our kids are similar ages too, my eldest is 6 youngest just turned 4. We too have just discovered the joy of sylvanian families with the hospital arriving for christmas- my girl is nurse mad. Looking forward to following you from here on. mel x

Bungalowgirl said...

Forgot to say, your gingerbread house is sensational! We plan to have a go at one next year. mel x

Tammy Chrzan said...

I am completely and totally jealous of your bag! It's so gorgeous! Well done John!
I love to see the looks on the kids faces, you aren't being silly at all, and I love that you call him Father Christmas instead of Santa Clause!

Hindustanka said...

You had a great Christmas:) always good to have family around.
our Christmas was quiet, considering that I'm only Christian in the family (and more, Orthodox):)we went to the church in the evening, I bought some more ornaments for a New year tree.
Rest, just a quiet homely day:)
Have a happy coming up New year!
Warm hugs,
Anna.

A Normandy kitchen said...

Hello Gillian,
It all looks wonderful, beautiful Christmas table, great gifts and leaving the sherry and mince pie out brings back memories and a smile! Happy you enjoyed it.
Ivan x

Thomasina Tittlemouse said...

What a lovely Christmas, Gillian! Merry and bright indeed! I remember the yellow satchel was on your wish list ages ago - always good when Fr C remembers these things! Happy festive days! E x

Karen said...

That looks like an excellent Christmas Gillian - am hoping you bring Oban early spring with that beautiful satchel!

Sopa Azul said...

Lovely post! Toys are wonderful... Have a nice weekend.

my little red suitcase said...

definitely a lot quieter than that but still nice. I love your satchel and that canal boat, wow, isn't it great!! glad you enjoyed, Heather x

Jo said...

It sounds like you all had a wonderful time. I always used to wake my two up when they were little, I just couldn't wait for them to wake of their own accord, I was more excited than they were. Eleanor had so much Sylvanian stuff, including the canal boat, it's all tidied away in the loft now, sniff sniff. I do miss toys around on Christmas Day, it's all grown up stuff now. We had my mum and dad over for the day and had a lovely turkey and beef Christmas dinner with all the trimmings, and we all got lots of lovely gifts.

Col | Hello Olive said...

Looks like a fab day! And loving your satchel - such a pretty colour! x

Lorilee said...

Your gingerbread house is adorable. My boys loved The Playmobile pirate ships. My boys are now 27 and 17. I enjoyed reading through your blog posts. I teach 4 year-olds in South Texas, U.S., while blogging, crafting, sewing, baking, clogging, and gardening in my spare time. Come visit me me at www.cackleberrycottage.blogspot.com.
Blessings,
Lorilee

Ivy and Elephants said...

So festive! Looks like a grand time was had by all. I loved seeing my little grandson's eyes light up when he saw all his toys. He's only 18 months so no wrapping paper. I guess I'll have to learn to make gingerbread houses, too.
What fun!
Welcome. Looking forward to seeing what you do in the new year.
Hugs,
Patti

the linen cloud said...

Glad to hear you had a lovely Christmas Gillian ... your new satchel is gorgeous ... I can't wait until my little one is old enough to get into Sylvanian Families ... for her, of course ;) ... Bee xx

Merlesworld said...

It sounds like a lovely christmas, ours was very quiet this year.
Merle......

Julia said...

What a lovely Christmas you all had! I love your new purse! My hubby is sending me to Nordstrom to pick out a new purse next week. I cannot wait!!! I love the holiday table setting...so pretty! And it looks like your children had a wonderful Christmas as well.

Melliemoo Crochet said...

Oh my ... I want that narrowboat ... !!! xxx

Angel Jem said...

What a lovely sounding day! We had a Sylvanian family Christmas, too, with the gypsy caravan! My daughter is nearly 11 so it really is a good toy for longevity. And the satchel is making me green with envy. Love it. Love love love it!

Leisa said...

It all looks absolutely idyllic! Happy New Year to you and your lovely family! :-)