Monday, 26 December 2016

Boxing Day

We enjoyed a quick walk on the Clent Hills where the beautiful weather gave us amazing views!

 We then arrived back at my parent's house for my family to arrive for a boxing day get-together and present opening!

Saturday, 24 December 2016

December 24th - Decorate the tree

Frazz was guarding our Christmas Eve box - sadly I forgot to take a photo of the inside, but it contained a decoration for the tree, kits to make candy cane reindeer (2 canes, a brown pipe cleaner, a red pompom and 2 googly eyes) and chocolate snowballs!

The girls decorated the Christmas tree
 and then we, Mum, me, I, G and E, went to see Treasure Island at the rep theatre. I though it a clever retelling of the story where Jim and the doctor were both played by women!
 We read

Friday, 23 December 2016

December 23rd - Chatsworth

We drove to Chatsworth for their Christmas event. Each Christmas, Chatsworth transforms into a Winter Wonderland with a different theme - this year it was based on the Nutcracker. We started with a walk around the gardens and grounds. Wow, they are so incredibly spectacular. Even though the weather wasn’t great, the gardens are truly beautiful with interesting sculptures and a maze.

Then when it was time we went into the house. The staff and volunteers were all dressed up and played their characters well. Each room was themed in relation to The Nutcracker and decorated beautifully.

 We then read

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

December 20th - Make a gingerbread house

Today G made and decorated a gingerbread house. She used a mould from Lakeland and this recipe
 She then used a variety of sweets.

I and P used a kit from Biscuiteers, although when P was showing my her roof she managed to drop it on the floor!   I am not sure I will bother to buy this one again next year as it is expensive and I prefer the taste of the homemade one.

Monday, 19 December 2016

December 19th - Visit London

We started the day at the highly expensive Madame Tussauds.Lucky, we didn;t have to queue too long and soon we were in the musuem. The experience is planned out across four floors and is very clever. You start the tour on the top floor with the 'Party' wax figures, and then make your way down each floor to visit the 'sports' figures, and then the music and political/cultural figures. It can get pretty crowded inside the waxwork museum; people tend to push and shove each other so they can get a good photo with the wax models. Some waxworks are much more popular than others and the crowds for various models can be overwhelming and you have to literally fight your way to have a photo snapped with them. However, the girls soon got into character and started posing next to all the exhibits, some of which they recognised and some I did! We really enjoyed the Spirit of London, where you sit on a london taxi and visit an interactive Timeline of London, as the girls had been learning lots of the history of London at school. We also loved the Marvel 4D cinema show where along with the 3D vision experience, we also had air pressured onto the backs of our necks, and light punches from the back of our seats and the Star wars exhibition which was mostly definitely the highlight of the day.

 We then had a quick look at the Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square, looked at the Chrismtas lights and some shop windows. I loved Liberty's Nutcracker themed ones! 

 The we went to Kew Gardens Winter Lights. The mile long, illuminated winter trail begins in the botanic wonderland, framed by two giant, ribbon bedecked Christmas trees, and leads into a starry canopy of 1,700 delicately lit lights. The girls were amazed by the supposedly scented fire garden (although I could only small kerosene) which was inspired by Five Gold Rings from The Twelve Days of Christmas. We allso loved the Tunnel of Lights, composed of more than 60,000 lights, it is a breathtaking instillation, making pictures and patterns to the sound of festive soundtrack favourites. We also stopped and enjoyed Christmas Kew karaoke at the Christmas Juke Box. We then enjoyed some rides, before roasting marshmallows (I had blueberry and gin, G had strawberry and champagne and the others had vanilla). Finally, the trail ends with the spectacular Palm House Pond, which boasts an amazing laser display, of streams of light and flickering orbs that dance in time to music inspired by Christmas classics.

Sunday, 18 December 2016

December 18th - Visit Father Christmas

Today after finding the elf making snow angels
the girls also discovered these on their pillows:
So off we drove to Lapland UK. Now it is very expensive but nothing else comes close in terms of setting, actors and Father Christmas himself.  The girls loved it and, on the way home, asked if they could go again next year!
First we posed for the arrival photo outside an elf house before checking in!  There was time for a quick cup of tea before we started out adventure!
 The trip starts with a story about elves.
 before the magical door opens into the snowy wonderland (although the girls were quick to point out it was not real snow, they did enjoy throwing it at each other though!)

 We went to the toy factory which had the same tasks as last year - if we went again it would be good to have some different jobs! The girls had to help Father Christmas finish some toys - stuff a reindeer and put together a wooden teddy bear (although as G asked "Who wants a wooden teddy?")
Then we went to Mother Christmas' kitchen to listen to a story and decorate a gingerbread man!
That took about an hour, which then meant we had about an hour and a half in the elf village. We went ice skating for about 50 minutes, meet Rudolph, bought some pick and mix (the highlight for E!), stroked a husky and enjoyed a hot chocolate complete with cream and marshmallows!

We then left the village to go and meet Father Christmas - cue 3 very excited children! The girls ran down the Narnian like paths - stopping to admire the reindeer before finally seeing the big man himself - who was excellent. G said "It's freaky how he knows so much about us" - quite!