Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas 2011 'wrap up'

Well, Christmas is over for another year and the thought of packing up the decorations again just makes me sigh, in a bad way. No sooner have I got them out, it seems, and I have to pack them away. It really is worth it though.

Our Christmas was a little sad this year with the passing of a loved one but other than that I felt that the lead up to Christmas went relatively smoothly. What really saved me and kept me in check was my Silly Season Check List.  Unfortunately, both of my children's birthdays are in November and no matter how hard I think moving their birthdays to June will help, it's always going to be a busy time of year because it also coincides with end of school break up.

There were White Chocolate & Macadamia Cookies for the Kindy teachers plus a coffee gift voucher. Also a plate of Rudolph Cookies for break up day and a Rudolph spare red nose gift for each of my son's Kindy friends.

There were Pistachio & Cranberry Biscotti baked for my daughter's teachers plus a personalised notebook and matching pen.  For her school friends, there was a Christmas eraser given to each friend.

After school break up we had a few days at the beach (we were at the beach but stayed around the pool at the resort). A quick, last minute Advent calendar was put together using baby socks, the tree was up and the stockings were hung (well, not really - the house was made a little more festive).

Christmas Day lunch was a low key affair. We were at Mum's and I was in charge of the coleslaw, a trifle cake and plum pudding.

In retrospect, I wish I was a little more organised, that is, to have a lot more Christmas things made by the time my kid's birthdays rolled around but my best piece of advice would be to have nothing planned for the week leading up to Christmas.
  • If there's last minute cookie baking, have the dough made and kept in the freezer so you can bake just before Christmas Day.
  • Try doing your grocery shopping online, if it is available in your area.
  • Let the kids fend for themselves, that is playtime. Don't feel like you have to organise Christmas craft, outings or Gingerbread House workshops (that's me) for them. I think my kids had more fun playing during this time because they weren't rushing around, in and out of the car, always having to be somewhere. We had sleep ins, late breakfasts and a relaxing time.
  • KISS: Keep it simple. Have easy meals, take neighbourhood walks looking at Christmas lights, call a loved one or watch Christmas movies with the kids.
  • Involve the children in last minute gift baking or cooking. My kids helped me bake cookies and fudge and the recipients appreciated it more.
If you don't have much planned for that final week, it allows a lot more time and a lot less stress should something come up like illness or helping someone out.

I really am going to create a Christmas To Do list next month (that is January 2012) which I can check off as I go.

Christmas Day at Mum's was very pleasant. There was lots of food, catching up with family members and a mild, warm day. The food was eaten before the flies knew we were eating outside. We didn't over eat and we loved hooking into leftovers for our evening meal. There was more of the same on Boxing Day.

A few photos from the day.

Doing the present 'happy dance'
Willy opening his present
Bonnie, the Guardian of the Santa sack

Lame Christmas cracker jokes

I hope you had a lovely Christmas day. Is there anything different you'd do next year?



  1. I feel like I had a wonderful Christmas this year also. Most years, by the time Christmas comes and I so ready to be done with it but this year was different. We spent Christmas day volunteering at a church function and that completely wore me out!

  2. Looks lovely Anne. That check list will come in handy. Great idea to do it now. You now just need that hubby home! xxx


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