I don’t blog that much about being a mummy or what I spend my time doing with my daughters. But Christmas is one of those times of year that really is all about them. I love involving them in all my festive planning and its lovely when they get involved with making and baking. There are so many things you can do with your kids at Christmas and here are 5 of the things we’ve done so far.

Writing a Letter to Santa

I love writing letters to Santa, this year me and Lila both wrote one! As well as asking for toys, Lila said she hoped Santa had an amazing Christmas and that her family would all have a happy Christmas too. This is the last week to send yours out if you would like to get a reply. Find out more on the Royal Mail website.

Seeing some Reindeer

Our local garden centre not only has tree, a grotto and lots of lovely Christmas displays, it also has some reindeer for the kids to look at. This definitely adds a little Christmas magic to a simple outing.

Elf on the Shelf

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, we are doing Elf on the Shelf this year. I love this new tradition and so far we have had loads of fun doing it. For kids it really can be a magical time off year and the elf just adds to this. You can pick up your own elf on Amazon.

Baking

I love baking and I love to get my kids involved when they want to. Last weekend Jess entered a bake off at her schools Christmas fair and made this fab cake almost completely on her own. Doesn’t it look good! I was so proud. She even won a prize for it! I’m going to do a separate post on the cake later in the week.

Decorating the Tree

Nothing is more simple or fun, then putting all the decorations on the tree. I just let the kids put them wherever they want and I can always neaten them up later. Every year each of us chooses a new special decoration, so that each year our collection gets even more special.

These are some of the things we’ve done so far. I’ll been blogging about more Christmas stuff as we do it. I’m blogging every day in December, so be sure to follow me or keep checking back for more seasonal posts.

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One of my favourite things about Christmas is giving gifts. Some of these are shop bought and some I’ve made myself. If you have a small budget or want to make something thoughtful, making a gift yourself can be a great option. One really nice gift I like to make is a gingerbread decoration gift set. These are really simple to make and the gift receiver can have fun decorating their gift themselves.

Gingerbread Decoration Kit

This is the perfect gift for children, not only do they get something nice to eat or decorate their tree, it also gives them something creative to do. I included some tubes of icing and a little jar of sprinkles.

You will need:

225g flour

1tsp ground ginger

1tsp bicarbonate of soda

85g butter

170g Golden Syrup

How to Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 150ºc
  2. Sieve together the flour, ginger and bicarbonate of soda. Put aside.
  3. Melt the butter and syrup in a pan on a low heat.
  4. Add to the dry ingredients and ix until it forms a dough.
  5. Roll out on a floured surface and cut into shapes with a cookie cutter.
  6. Make a hole in each biscuit with a skewer.
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes and cool on a wire rack.
  8. Thread each cookie with some ribbon or string and arrange in a gift box with a jar of sprinkles and some tubes of icing.

Please let me know if you give this a try, or if you have any other festive homemade gifts that you’d recommend.

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For the last couple of years, I’ve had the same Christmas decoration theme. It makes sense to reuse decorations, rather than buying a whole new set every year. However this time round, I’m a bit sick of our old red and white theme and want to go for something completely different. Aldi was a great place to start.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsI’m going to use some of our old decorations – the really special ones and ones that have a more neutral colour scheme. But having a new theme, does give me an excuse to pick out lots of new and exciting decorations for our tree.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsLast year I completely missed out on Aldi’s lovely Christmas offering. They always have really pretty glass baubles which remind me of classic vintage ones, but often with a more modern theme. Last year they had everything from a cute robot to a fox. I wasn’t going to miss out this year, so Rob popped into Aldi and picked me us up loads of fabulous baubles.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsThey come in sets of 3 and each box costs £2.99, so they really are a great price. I love the mix of bright colours alongside classic gold and silvers and I think for an eclectic tree, they mix and match really well.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsMy favourite is the super kitsch set which comes with a donut, ice-cream and lolly pop. The colours are lovely and would work well alongside traditional colourful vintage decorations.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsThe more traditional sets include pinecones and this sweet little white fox. Another very kitsch set comes with a car sacked with gifts, a pineapple and even a flamingo.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsI love the set which comes with a teddy, a nutcracker and a vintage style Santa head. These really remind me of original vintage pieces that I’ve seen. Maybe one day I can put the real thing on the tree alongside these.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsI can’t wait to start decorating the tree and sharing the finished result with you. Over the next week, I’m hoping to have all the decorations up around the house.

Aldi Christmas DecorationsWhere are your favourite places to buy Christmas decorations? Have you seen any that would work well with my new Christmas look?

Aldi Christmas DecorationsCheck back every day in December, as I continue to post daily for Blogmas. There will be loads of recipes, cocktails, decorations and festive shenanigans.

Find all things Christmas on the Aldi website.

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As I mentioned in yesterdays Blogmas post, one of the things I like most about Christmas is all the little traditions. Making memories is important to me and this is one time of year where it’s easy to spend lots of time having fun with the kids.

Elf on the shelfOne tradition I’ve never tried is Elf on the Shelf. Since the girls asked for an elf this year, I picked one up. We had a lovely time reading the story and in the end they girls decided to name our elf Gavin 😉 .

Every day in December Gavin will hide somewhere for the girls to find in the morning. I’m looking forward to seeing what mischief he gets up to. I’ll keep you all updated on his antics over Blogmas.

Elf on the shelfIf you have an elf, please let me know some ideas for things he can do! I’ve been looking on Pinterest and some other people blogs, but I’m hoping Gavin will come up with some original ideas too!

And what about other Christmas plans and traditions? This weekend we are planning to pick up our tree. Its my birthday tomorrow and so I’d like to go somewhere fun, where we can choose the perfect tree. I’m also going to go for a new decorating theme this year. We’ve done scan red and white so many times and this year I’d like to go for something a bit more quirky and retro.

Here’s a video from a couple of years ago of the kids decorating the tree. I can’t believe how little they look! Last year we had a real tree and I prepared it, so picking out a tree together will definitely be a new and important tradition. I’ll keep you updated on tree and decoration progress.

What Christmas traditions do you and your family have?

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Having been a little absent from the blog recently, I’ve decided to set myself a little challenge. If you’ve been reading for a few years, you’ll know me and blog challenges don’t actually mix very well! But I have decided to blog every day in December until Christmas. I nearly managed Blogmas last year and hopefully this year I will succeed.

Sadly not a real invitation, just one from my Basic Invite review! But the blog will definitely be getting into the festive spirit. I want to share lots of making and baking ideas, as well as things I’m doing with the kids to enjoy the season.

I love traditions and making the most of all the fun parts of Christmas. Obviously I love giving and receiving gifts, but there is so much more to this time of year than that. For Christians it is an important festival and if you’re not religious it is a time to have fun with friends and family, to cook and eat and generally just be merry.

So join me over the next few weeks as I deck the halls, listen to cheesy music, watch old movies and just have lots and lots of fun.

Do you think I’ll manage to complete blogmas this year?

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