I've not blogged it what seems like forever, but actually is just a month or so. Life travels fast!Of course December holds within it Christmas, but also Chips birthday. It's hard to believe my littlest man is already 4!
The last weekend of November Abbie (Minnie) tripped over the hover tube coming down the stairs, fell awkwardly and ended up in a cast for 6 weeks with a broken foot!
This meant she had time off ballet and the following weekend Caleb had a day off from gym, so we took the opportunity to take the chids to choose a tree from Bridgemere - and enjoy looking at all the beautiful and expensive Christmas decorations! One of the plusses of buy our tree there that day was a FREE, no-strings, cup of hot-chocolate for each of us :D. It was good fun & possibly something to make a tradition of.
That evening was then filled with carols, we lit a fire and had fun decorating the tree(s) and the house together :D
After that I pretty much had to chain myself to the PC for a while to get all the presents bought, not only for ourselves, but also for my mother and grandmother! It was a mammoth endeavour, but thankfully I think I did OK and ultimately everyone seemed thrilled with their gifts.
The children, meanwhile amused themselves with baking, crafting and gaming for most of December (with a bit of 'normal' school thrown in here and there)...
One highlight of December was a day trip to Home-Ed' Christmas Camp. This happens every year, but it's not often possible for us to stay (due to our number), so we pop in for a day to say Hi! to everyone and have a catch-up. I actually didn't take any pictures this time (gasp), but I think the chids took some on their phones.The following day Miss P came to stay for a few days, which was great fun and she definitely added a dynamic to the chid-mix!
Then there were parties
You know all the usual December things ;-)
On the 21st Chip had his long-awaited 4th Birthday. He was so excited about it this year, having been counting the days, in his own way, since Joel had his birthday back in October.
I have to say, this little man has to be the most grateful child I have ~ he literally jumped for joy over every present he received, from the smallest to the biggest. He was thrilled with every single one.
Bless him, it was a crazy busy day, involving the Christmas Carol service at church, which meant he only had a 'taster' of his birthday in the morning and the rest of his presents when we got home. It was good though, and so was he, meaning the enjoyment was extended throughout the day :D.
LOVE this little man!
The next few day were pretty much Christmas prep (I was organised and had the presents wrapped early this year), just a little cleaning to make the house presentable for guests, and then some time to make a gingerbread house with the children ~ which we were all very pleased with and has now been suitably devoured ~ it was scrumptious!
And finally Christmas came...
As usual the day began with stockings in bedrooms, only this year we all gathered in the girls room, whilst Daddy slept in a bit longer!
Then church & home for the feast,
...and finally 'the big unwrap' begins!
This years requests definitely had a bit of 'warm' theme...
You see that look on Lilo's face ~ that was the moment she realised she now had the complete 'Hetty Feather' set. All I can say is "Thank-you Jacqueline Wilson!" My dyslexic, reluctant reader is now devouring book after book! Since Christmas she has already read through two of these tomes!
Christmas day is exciting enough, but the highlight of Christmas here, is Boxing Day, because THAT is when the cousins come! It's mayhem and madness and we totally love it ~ all of those that can make it under one roof ~ OURS! This year we were missing Uncle David & cousin Ben, but there were still 21 of us together :D
There were more parcels and presents, of course
I think my favourite this year just has to be this one, made by my sister in law ~ love it!
Much general silliness and silly-games
and of course, much more food!
On the Sunday afternoon, between Christmas and New Year, we maintained another little 'new tradition' of having some good friends over for a games afternoon. These family-friends are great fun and it's always a hoot when they come :D
The wrapped up year was rounded off in style too ~ a New Year's party & sleep-over at our church, with about 100 of our friends. It was a night of celebration for all the great things we have seen God do amongst us this year ~ some miraculous things ~ a time to enjoy a meal together and see in the 2015 with dancing and music, hopeful for all it has to bring us!
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas too, and may I take this chance to pray every blessing over you and your loved ones in 2015