Christmas Magic

I've always been a Christmas fanatic. From putting up the tree, to singing Christmas carols in July, to being super jazzed at the thoughts of wearing a tacky festive jumper to work, I love it all. This year, we're properly settled into our home, and I've been enjoying adding seasonal touches around the house. While I had already made some crocheted snowflake garlands to drape around the living room, I ended up making Tommie some Star Wars decorations for the tree. Oh, when I'm a good girlfriend, I'm a very good girlfriend indeed. Except when I ignore him while trying to concentrate on making said decorations.

Over the last few years, I've been gifted beautiful Christmas decorations from family. Pieces from Newbridge Silver, snow globes and personalised stockings have all helped add some festive cheer to our little house. Though not particularly religious, I absolutely love the little crib tea light holder my aunt gave me when I first moved out of home many years ago. The rest have all been picked up in local shops, or handmade, to make the place brighter and more festive while on a  limited budget. I think there's nothing better on cold nights like these, to light the fire and some scented candles, pop on the Christmas lights and watch a feel good movie.

Now that Caelen is getting older, I want to make Christmas as magical as I can. Decorating the house, Christmas movies, going to all the estates to see all the houses lit up, telling him all about Santa to get him excited. Yesterday, my estate had their annual Christmas event, with a visit from Santa for all the local children. Unfortunately, we had to miss it, so I had planned on bringing Caelen to see Father Christmas some afternoon this week. Tonight, just after sitting down to dinner, there was a knock at the door. To our surprise, our next door neighbour had arranged for a special visit from Santa. While Caelen was a little apprehensive at first, he soon got into the spirit, even kissing the man in red goodbye.  

How do you make Christmas special for you and your loved ones?


The Jolly Blogger Award

The lovely Yari over at Yari's Adventures nominated me for The Jolly Blogger Award. Seeing as I love anything related to Christmas, I jumped at the chance to share my answers! I'm meant to nominate ten bloggers too, but seeing as how I'm quite shy within the bloggersphere, I'm leaving it open for anyone that reads this. 

1. Do you open your gifts on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?
Christmas Day. Since I'm the oldest child in my family, Santa was still coming to the house for years. We'd all get up super early and open our presents with the ones that still believed. Even now, when I know what my presents are, I'll have to wait until Christmas morning.

2. Favourite Christmas song?
Baby, It's Cold Outside. I don't know why, but it just feels like Christmas when I hear this song.

3. Favourite Christmas/holiday movie?
ELF! I literally only saw this for the first time last night, and it's already after knocking Home Alone off its perch. Other than that, the Harry Potter movies. They're not Christmas movies, but they're always on TV around the festive season, so they totally count, right?

4. Favourite Christmas decoration?
Apart from the ones I've made? A teeny tiny Newbridge silver grand piano my aunt bought for me years ago. 

5. Favourite Christmas food?
Chocolate. And more chocolate. All those selection boxes and tins of Roses. I may be drooling at the thought of all the chocolate I'll have in the house shortly enough!

6. Favourite holiday/winter drink?
Hot chocolate. Recently, I've been making Bewleys white hot chocolate, with lashings of cream, marshmallows, and a candy cane stirrer. Bliss. I'm planning on making some mulled wine for Christmas Eve when we have family over though.

7. Snow or no snow?
I love the idea of snow. Actual snow, not so much. It loses its charm once it starts to get sludgy, which being Ireland, is only a matter of minutes usually.

8. Do you send out cards or no cards?
I love sending out cards. The last two years I've been really bad at it though. I've had a pile to send on the worktop in the kitchen for the bones of a week. They'll definitely get posted in time for Christmas though!

9. Do you still secretly believe in Santa Claus?
I wish! I was only talking about it last night. How much money would us parents save if Santa was real? 

10. Your favourite winter clothing item?
Pyjamas. Some days, I'm lucky if I get dressed at all. To me, winter is all about staying warm. Why get cold to get dressed, when I could stay warm and cosy by the fire instead? Failing that, a big old scarf to wrap myself up in when I do have to leave the house. Basially, any article of clothing that makes me feel like I'm still snug in bed!

11. One beauty product you cannot be without this winter?
Hand cream. I love the Soap & Glory minis, but lately I've been carrying around a L'Occitane one I got as part of a gift set. Between the weather changing so suddenly, and handling money and boxes in work, I find my poor hands get super dry in the winter. Keeping my hands moisturised seems to be keeping the cracked mitts of 2013 at bay so far.

12. Best Christmas memory?
It was back in good old '93. My mom was in the hospital after having the latest addition to the family, and me and my brother woke up Christmas morning to presents under the tree AND a brand new fancy TV. We were so excited to show my mom our Christmas presents when we went to visit that we completely forgot about the baby though, oops!


Next Christmas Wishlist

A few days ago, an email from Next pinged into my inbox. Now, I'm not usually one to even consider doing a post like this. I'm rather lazy, and not super competitive. But, I love Next. For myself, for Caelen, and for this little house we call home. So, since I already had more than a handful of things filed away in a mental wish list, I thought it might be fun what I had chosen. I've based this wish list on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning, because who doesn't like nice things at this time of year, especially at its most festive.

This Christmas marks our first as a family, of sorts. While Tommie will be spending Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at home with his family, we've decorated my house as a family. I'm in the middle of trying to plan a little Christmas evening for the three of us, to exchange presents, since we won't be able to do it on the day. I'm thinking Christmas lights and more than enough candles everywhere, pyjamas and warm throws, hot chocolate for three, a pizza instead of a formal dinner, and a movie before bed. It's the little things, eh?

I love the idea of new Christmassy pyjamas. When I was a child, my grandparents would buy me a new pyjamas, dressing gown and slippers for Christmas. I've brought that with me to my adult years, and every year, I buy my own. These red and cream Snuggle pyjamas fit the bill. They're festive looking, and more importantly, they're warm! For Christmas Day, I prefer comfort over style, so a snuggly oversized jumper like this beautiful berry toned one is key. Paired with black skinny jeans and some boots (perfect for hiding those thick cosy socks) should be comfortable enough to eat everything all day.

for her

I get really excited about shopping for Caelen these days. I've always had a grĂ¡ for boys clothes, but the older he gets, the better the clothes are. He's been wearing so many comic book tshirts and hoodies recently, I'm looking forward to getting him something smarter. This little check shirt with bow tie is adorable, especially paired with the leather biker jacket. Add to that some jeans and Converse, and you've got one dapper little dude.

I've been putting together a little Christmas Eve box for Caelen, filled with things to make it magical. Some snuggly Christmas pyjamas, a festive movie, and a nativity book, hot chocolate mix and some marshmallows, along with some more treats. 

smallie christmas

Even though Tommie won't be here on Christmas morning, it wouldn't feel right not to include him in a wish list of nice things for all the family. And so, a smart new quilted hoodie and graphic tee are just the ticket. For as long as I've known him, that's all I've seen him wear, bar the odd shirt and tie combo. While he looks incredibly handsome dressed up, nothing beats seeing your man at his most comfortable. And the Hulk t-shirt was a no brainer, after seeing a photo of him as a young child during the week, wearing a pretty similar one. 

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Christmas morning itself will be a busy one, hosting my family. Since Santa no longer visits my parents house, they're coming to mine on Christmas morning to see what Caelen has under the tree. Which means I'll have yet more hot chocolate on standby, and maybe some sweet treats to wake us all up on a cold winters morning. These mugs and treat jar would be perfect additions to the morning, as everyone enjoys the excitement of that sweet son of mine.

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Needless to say, I'm pretty excited for Christmas this year. Caelen is more and more aware of what's going on, and has the whole Santa story down to a tee. He's getting really excited about Santa leaving presents for him under the tree, lets just hope he doesn't disappoint!