Aww, Santa you shouldn’t have…

Christmas giftsCollage

{The gifts bearing my name this year included a pair of classic short Ugg boots, the Urban Decay Naked eyeshadow palette, a Diptyque Baies scented candle, a scarf from American Vintage, Jamie Oliver’s latest cook book and a pair of slippers from The White Company.}

As we tumble headfirst into 2014, Christmas Day is already starting to feel like a distant memory. Our Christmas tree and decorations are still up but by this weekend they will be packed away again for another year. While the festive season is all about being together, enjoying each others company (well mostly anyway – Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without the little arguments that seem to rear their head after the turkey has been polished off), it is always nice to find a few presents under the tree. Judging by Santa’s generosity, I must have been a very good girl this year…

Now we’re off to battle the crowds and indulge in a bit of Sales shopping as well as exchanging a couple of gifts. With less than 12 hours remaining of 2013 I wish you all a very happy New Year! X

Our Christmas in Pictures

Christmas Collage 1

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas. Ours went by in a flash but it was wonderful and definitely one that we will remember and treasure for many years to come. Since having children, we have always spent Christmas at home or at our parents’ houses (which are less than half an hour away) so I was looking forward to going away to celebrate both Christmas and my father’s 70th birthday together with my parents and my sister’s family. From the moment we arrived at Moonfleet Manor in Dorset I felt all the stress from the run-up to the festive season melt away. The Georgian manor house was beautifully decorated with Christmas trees in all the downstairs rooms and mantlepieces heaving with pine and cone garlands. No meals to cook, no house to clean and no need to worry about entertaining the children as there was a swimming pool, games rooms and a huge indoor play area with room to play football and tennis as well as a soft play area for the younger ones. I even had time to read a book and, after a busy Christmas Day with stockings in the morning followed by a treasure hunt which ended in a truly magical Santa’s Grotto, my sister and I booked in for a relaxing facial and massage on Boxing Day. And of course, lots and lots of food, including a six course Black Tie gala dinner on our last night – so healthy eating is definitely on the agenda for January!

Christmas Collage 2

Back home there were more presents to open under the tree (with only a small car we couldn’t bring any big gifts with us) including a dolls house for Clemmie and a new games console for the boys, which they were up playing early this morning. We managed to drag them away for a few hours to go to the zoo and enjoy the sunshine (a welcome change from the horrible rain and wind).

The boys have just gone to bed and when I said goodnight I asked what they thought was the best part of Christmas. I expected them to say ‘Getting a Lego set or an Xbox’ but they both replied ‘being together at the hotel and seeing our cousins’ which made me so happy because, to me, that is what Christmas is all about: family and togetherness.

There are still a few more lazy days to enjoy before reality kicks in again and I, for one, intend to make the most of them by doing not very much at all! X

This Year’s Christmas Card Trauma…

Xmas photos

You know the saying ‘Never work with children or animals’? Well, the first part of that statement certainly rang true last week when I spent two separate afternoons trying to get just one decent picture of the children in their Santa hats to use for a Christmas card. Despite bribing them with promises of sweets (bad mummy, I know..) getting the three of them to all look at the camera and smile at the same time proved rather challenging, to put it mildly…

If one wasn’t picking their nose, the other was sticking their tongue out or the third was tickling/pinching/pushing their siblings. It was actually easier when Clemmie was baby, as at least she stayed in one place instead of climbing all over the sofa and her brothers. I came close to giving up but I know how much our friends and relatives (many of whom live abroad) appreciate these cards. In the end it was worth persevering as I did get one (yes ONE) usable picture. Jazzed up with a bit of fake snow and a red border it does the job, even if Cameron looks like he wants to be anywhere but in the picture (that’s a pre-teen’s prerogative I suppose..)

Xmas card final

This year’s Christmas card from the Anderson family. I hope the recipients appreciate the hours of hard work that went into it…