Advent count down reaches day twenty!

Wow, we’ve made it to day twenty now.

What has happened on the 20th December? Well, in 1699 Peter the Great changed New Year from 1 September to 1 January, Grimm’s Rumpelstiltskin was first published in 1812, It’s a wonderful Life (a classic movie played every Christmas) premiered in 1946, and Rosa Parks sat in a ‘white seat’ on a bus in 1956.

Ornament calendar

Our ornament calendar today produced a sack for Santa – the image clearly shows it is full as the elves are struggling to move it!

Santa's sack pressed out ornament hanging on a tree hear a sleigh

Lego City

My son likes this mini digging machine, but I’m not sure it will fit in with his mining Lego very well as it is so small!

Lego digging machine

Lego Friends

Tonight’s Lego ornament is pretty – a white snowflake with blue ‘waterdrops’ on the end to give it colour and interest – and fits in with the white Christmas model.

Lego snowflake ornament

Christmas book

And tonight’s Christmas book is Santa is coming to Australia! – and he is coming soon! It is a cute book and my kids love spotting places they can recognise – maybe we can get a map out tonight and they can trace Santa’s journey across Australia, too.

An elf popping out of a kitchen drawer!

Peaking out of the kitchen drawers this morning – I think Tinkles knows finding her was pretty tough twice this week (in the laundry and with the elephant tea set) so she made it easy today!

Not sure how exciting it would have been inside a drawer of plates and bowls though, not if Santa needs reports about our kitchen drawers 🙂

Tinkles the Elf peaking out of a white kitchen drawer

It’s Wednesday and it’s day 19 in our countdown

Wednesday, middle of the working week and heading for our last weekend before Christmas…

What Christmas cooking have you done this year? Maybe some edible gifts, a gingerbread creation, vanilla wreaths or perhaps some Turron.

Ornament calendar

Merrit holding a baby’s rattle – a very relevant ornament theme once you have read the accompanying story – and having her hand licked by a reindeer in the hidden image.

AN elf holding a baby rattle ornament

Lego City

The Lego City advent calendar’s flap revealed a lot of pieces tonight – my son formed them into two remote cars and two remote controllers, with a lo of spare pieces left over. I wonder how many kids will get a remote control car from Santa this year?

two Lego remote controls and matching cars

Lego Friends

We now have a gingerbread man ornament hanging up, thanks to the Friends calendar. He is quite cute and but I don’t think he’d be as much fun to eat as our gingerbread sleigh or gingerbread house!

Lego gingerbread man ornament

 

Christmas book

Tonight, my son is going to read us Wake up Bear! which I am truly looking forward to as I remember it being a special story we enjoyed last time we read it.

Tinkles the Elf finds some elephants

This must be the week of hiding well as it again took us a while to find Tinkles the Elf today, although we did manage it before leaving for school unlike when she hid in the washing machine!

In the lounge room there is a glass fronted cabinet with glass shelves. It was on one of those shelves, interacting with an elephant tea set, that we found Tinkles. Luckily there is little tinsel around that cabinet so it was easier to spot her red and green outfit!

Christmas elf sitting beside some cute ceramic elephants

We’re onto day 18 in advent calendars

One week to go to Christmas! School, work, advent calendars and preparations are still going strong though, so let’s find out what our calendars provided for day eighteen…

Ornament calendar

Perhaps not a typical ornament, Santa’s hat is certainly a well known symbol of Christmas and good cheer!

collage of Santa's hat ornament pictures

Lego City

As there is a picture of this on the box, my son has been looking for this monster truck to come out of the calendar since day one!

Lego monster truck

Lego Friends

Following on from all the cupcakes on Sunday (day sixteen), the Friends ornament is a cake stand.

Lego cake stall

Christmas book

Tonight’s Christmas book is going to be Santa’s Husband which is such a great book for making us question perceptions and accepting alternatives. If you haven’t read it with your family yet, I suggest you read my review (so you know what to expect) and then read the book with as many children as you can!

Even elves need to work out!

There was great amusement and happiness this morning when we discovered Tinkles sitting on the kitchen bench lifting weight!

Sure, the weights were marshmallows, but that is more significant when you are as small as Tinkles!

Christmas elf lifting marshmallows on a stick as weights

Whilst Tinkles may feel marshmallows are heavy enough to lift, my son thinks they are tasty enough to eat…

Boy trying ot eat elf's marshmallow weights

8 days to Christmas – day seventeen is here!

Just 8 days to go until Christmas – are you excited or worried about the size of your ‘things to do before Christmas’  list?

Ornament calendar

While this ornament looks fancy and is bigger than most other ones, it was still just two simple pieces interconnected to make our reindeer.

Images of the press out reindeer ornament

Lego City

I love the little chef with his tray of biscuits that my son found behind flap 17! He is inspiring me to go bake something, too…

Lego chef with a tray of biscuits

Lego Friends

Today’s ornament from the Friends advent calendar is colourful and cute – but is it a boot on wheels or an unusually shaped vehicle?

Lego boot on wheels

Christmas book

Tonight’s Christmas book is The naughtiest reindeer in the zoo which will be a nice story to read while those biscuits are cooking I think!

Tinkles the Elf hides in the laundry

Tinkles was well hidden today – I ended up finding her long after the kids had gone to school as she was sitting in the door of the washing machine! Not sure if she thinks she needs a clean or she just thought it was a funny spot to hide – lucky I spotted her before I put on a load of washing as it may have been a bit dangerous for an elf…

A grazing platter gift

A group gift can be so much easier than organising multiple individual gifts, especially if you don’t know the recipients that well. And it’s probably cheaper, too!

Today’s post is by Kate Moar, telling us about her lovely gift idea for a group (teachers, child carers, and so on).

A gift idea

Like most of us, I am very rushed and busy at the moment so I wanted to find a gift to give the office staff and support teachers at my boys’ school that was as simple as possible.

My sister had the idea of a grazing dessert platter in Christmassy colours, and I loved it..

Putting it together

It is done on a large wooden cheese board  – I got one from Kmart for $15. I shopped at various supermarkets and ended up spending  $71 – this filled two cheese boards with all the items so it worked out to be $35.50 per platter.

The platter is made from

  • Lindt balls
  • mint slice
  • cherry ripe slice
  • little pecan tarts
  • green licorice straps
  • red frogs
  • strawberry and cream lollies
  • strawberries
  • grapes
  • cherries
  • Christmas tree biscuits (I found this in Aldi or you could make your own!)
  • fruit cake
  • Maltesers
  • gingerbread stars
  • Darrel lea mint balls
  • Tim Tam bites
  • Ferrero Rochers
  • Raffaellos

Beautiful platter of food as Christmas gift

It looked really good.

It took less than 10 mins to put together and the teachers LOVED it!!!! So I achieved both goals of showing my appreciation for the teachers and not taking a lot of my time!

I took the other platter to a party last night and it was a hit too! I loved that I didn’t have to rush home and cook before going out, and it didn’t need refrigerating at the party either.

The board from the party came home, but I am happy to have made the board part of the gift so the staff room now has a chopping board or serving board the staff can use. A gift for immediate pleasure and longer term use as well!

I will definitely be doing them again next year!

Day sixteen in the Christmas countdown!

After a busy day on the Santa train, the kids were tired but happy to open the 16th flap of their advent calendars…

Ornament calendar

Back to fitting pieces together, for day sixteen the press out advent calendar provided a blue gift box above an image of Merrit the Elf carrying many gifts to Santa’s sleigh.

Elf carrying tall pile of gifts

Lego City

A simple little cupcake trolley was behind flap 16 in the Lego City Advent Calendar.

Lego cake trolley

Lego Friends

Hanging on the tree, this Lego Friends ornament is quiet cute, but it was one of the hardest Lego constructions we’ve come across. It looked like one circular piece was attached to multiple hinges and the other circular piece was floating above it – there was no obvious way to attach it. Eventually, we realised that the white space it was floating above was actually a white Lego cylinder! From that point, assembling the cupcake was easy!

Lego cupcake Christmas ornament

Christmas book

There was an old bloke who swallowed a present will amuse us tonight as we continue our “Christmas book a night” advent activity!

Tinkles just hanging around…

Tinkles was hanging in a ceiling air vent this morning!

Tinkles the Christmas elf hanging in a ceiling vent

Tinkles the Christmas elf hanging in a ceiling vent

Christmas advent day fifteen

Second last Saturday before Christmas and there is Christmas everywhere, including day fifteen of advent calendars!

Ornament calendar

In today’s calendar we still pressed out two pieces but strangely they do not interconnect – we have two decorations! It sort of makes sense as not many people go around with one ice skate, but still felt a little strange.

ice skate decorations on the tree

Lego City

The anticipated Christmas tree popped out from under flap fifteen.

Lego Christmas tree

Lego Friends

We are debating what the Friends ornament from day fifteen actually is… To me, it looks like a platter or board for holding cupcakes to hand around at a Christmas party, but my children think it is a present. Once hanging, it does really look like a present, but why are there raised bits (that look like Lego cupcakes!) randomly sticking out from it?

Lego cupcake platter checkboard

Christmas book

Happy Christmas Spot is the cheery little book we will read tonight. Have you read this one with your kids this Christmas?

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