So, here is my naff homemade Christmas countdown calendar. Time constraints meant it looked unfestive, but my idea was to have something mysterious for the children to look forward to, in the run-up to Christmas day. Some days would be big, some days would be simple and small, but my main thought would be to create some magical moments.
December 1st – we were off to a babies Christmas party and I suggested to the boys they could go in costume. Their roles as elves came in very handy as they assisted in he distribution of presents and had a jolly good time being useful! Later that day I took the boys to Winchester to see the lantern parade. It was tricky with just me and the smalls, but we managed it and the market felt very festive.
December 2nd – Christmas Cards and Doodles!
I knew I had work, and a group, so the morning would be a nice, calm one with creating mixed with a little trampolining! The boys had some new crafty treats such as Christmas Doodle books, a Christmas Around the World book which we read together, and colour-in Christmas cards.
December 3rd – Stop-Frame Passion!
This needed to be quiet too – William’s swim lesson plus the fact he was with us all day, Indi’s new grade 1 ballet lesson and the lodge wood being frantically treated during every spare moment meant a grounded day. I had bought an ‘animation kit’ from Sainsbury’s, hoping it would hold the boys’ attention for a while. Well, that was an understatement! Since downloading the accompanying app, he has created four films and wants to use it all the time!
December 4th – Roald Dahl Museum.
I had bought the voucher a while back and hoped Daz would be able to come with us, but progress on the lodge had to be made so we ventured off alone! It was a long journey considering the small size of the museum – but the kids enjoyed it thoroughly, especially as there was a stop frame animation section!
December 5th – Dad’s birthday!
Today was a quiet morning, followed by soft play which included meeting up with old Wild Tracks friends, so when Indi discovered this upon opening the door he was delighted! Eti was also full of joy, as he had wistfully been watching Indi in swimming lessons recently and desperately wanted to go swimming more. Daz’s pressie from me was a year’s swimming pass for our local pair of leisure centres, and he takes Indi to his lesson now when I go to work on a Monday evening. Today’s surprise was that Eti was to go swimming with daddy during the lesson, then they could all swim together afterwards! Oma came to hold a sleeping P, and it all worked out well. Hopefully this can happen most weeks! After work we had a nice birthday Chinese takeaway.
December 6th – Tower of London!
I was surprised Indi guessed this from my drawing! I was a little nervous about the car journey as I needed to avoid the congestion charge and avoid Tower Bridge which was closed and go via Blackwall Tunnel, after spending far too much time on the M25. It was a little hairy and a test of my parenting but we did the day and it was great to see Indi so excited by the Crown jewels. It’s taken me nearly 40 years to finally see them and he’s managed it in 7! Lots of gobsmacking artefacts I didn’t expect to see, and a wonderful atmosphere. Obviously the petrol and parking cost, but the home ed rate came to the princely sum of £3.85 for all of us!
Daz has been busy adding to the magic with the nightly antics of the elf. However, this is not a form of blackmail or punishment – he doesn’t watch our children, just does silly things at night. Indi saw him in the shop and begged that he came home with us, and his antics started then!