Sunday, 30 November 2014

Christmas Planning Week 14: Decorations

Don't know about you but this week is defiantly the kick start week for decorating our house.

We spent Saturday putting up our tree, no tinsel this year, I can never get it to look as good as my mum used too and this year it looked even worse.  However we've put the addition of sweeties strung up with ribbon instead.

I'm not happy with it tho, it looks really bare and naff... going to look out for a nice 6ft bushy one when they get reduced for next year I think.

The stockings are hung on the fireplace with the sweeties and advent calenders on the hearth.  I love this bit of the room.  It has our mini 'snowy night' fireplace and candles with the home-made advent calander on the shelf and looks sooo festive.

I hate the wallpaper.... it came with the house!!

This weeks planning ideas,,,,,
Decorate house for holidays.... check.
Have a craft day for children..... I'm planning lots of craft activites over the next 24 days rather then 1 big event.
Prepare all packages for mailing and mail this week and next - at the moment I think we only have 1 parcel that needs posting as my mum is coming up the weekend before Christmas and can take home all the family ones.  I would like to say one of his family would make an appearance and take this stuff but I won't hold my breath.  Yay for Collect+ and their great prices and prompt delivery times.

Of course if you are buying a real tree now would be the time to do it, as much as I would love one (I wish artificial ones smelt the same) we just can't.  The kids have run into this one enough times they'd be no needles left by next weekend.

If you have anything to post overseas you really need to get this done too.

It's a good idea to start considering storing the decorations.  We've discovered this week that the "Santa Stop Here" sign must have been put away damp as it's now mouldy.... so I've got to get a new one of those this week.   
The baubles have survived really well thanks to the storage box I bought last year for them and the tree was still in one piece with working lights (always a bonus).
I love those huge christmas tree storage bags you can buy as we were able to store the festive soft toys/ tinsel etc in ours with the tree.  Everything else goes in a couple of large boxes well labelled and put to the back of the cellar as they only get used once a year.

This year we've bought festive plates and cups etc so I need to make sure they are well wrapped and stored away after christmas so they don't get damaged.

I MUST finalise my 24 books of advent and our elf naughtiness (at least for the next week) before I go to bed tonight.

The playroom is eventually getting paper on it this weekend which is a start.  At least we may be able to use it again by Christmas.

I've made one of this years Portable North Pole Videos (info coming up on another post) just one more to do.

To-Do list update.
1) complete Christmas card list - yes I know, so easy but I've still not done it.
2) sort out the living room - must shift/ sort out the Lego .... I started ... well ok I did 2 small models  Lego is now upstairs and the room is getting there.  I must remove all the paper bits that get dumped around and prepare to switch the books over to winter themed.  As sorted as it's going to get!!
3) make up the Christmas cards .... do I need any more?
4) decide on/ start the kids Christmas cards - started :) ordered
5) get a couple of box of chocs and some snacks in ready.  - now have 2 tubs and a few bags.  Moving to 'shopping list'
6) start meal planning and plan Christmas Day meal - start a list of food to buy and when to buy it. 
7) sort out the Christmas crockery/ table covers etc - started - now in shopping list,
8) Toys in the Argos sale.Unfortunately most of Argos stuff my boys like is now home delivery only and they let us down this way a couple of years ago not delivering a Christmas present then telling me lies and making it a horrible experience.
9) tidy/ sort my room - started done (for now)
10) take a look at last years wooden advent calendar. I'd like to do 'something' to it but at the moment I don't know what.  Perhaps I'll do 'it' over the Christmas season ready for next year.
11) Medicines Moving to 'shopping list' 
12) First Aid Moving to 'shopping list'
13) Get new Christmas Towels Moving to 'shopping list'
14) get rid of old toys/ books.   Now under number 18
15) Start planning the Christmas gifts for boys. - started all planned and most bought.
16) Look at what clothes are in Ben's 'bigger' box and what they are outgrowing.   Now under number 18
17) check smoke detectors - hubby's job as I can't reach them easily.  Safe to say they don't work, hubby needs to fix them!!
18) Kids room tidy  (from week 6)         
               Shelves/ cupboards - examine, toss/save/donate, replace onto shelves.         
               Games/ Puzzles - sort them out and bin any with missing pieces.         
               Get rid of old magazines, old McDonald toys, toys in pieces, broken crayons, non-functional pens.         
               Clothing - too small, old?         
               Wash curtains - yay I did this.        
               Clean/ tidy under the bed   - tick - moved the furniture so had to.         
               Clean the windows,  dust any wooden furniture.         
              Clean the floors/ hoover - tick, when we moved the furniture.
 19) Kitchen         
              Clean and tidy the wall units, then the bottom cabinets then the counters.         
              Check any open boxes of food/ storage for bugs        
              Wipe down empty shelves        
              Check medicines for expiry dates        
              Clean all appliances inside and out (refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, toaster, hob, oven)               
              Sink - don't forget to send cleaner down the u-bend.
20) make place cards  
21) dining room
            Clean the window and windowsill 
            Empty all drawers, shelving etc.   Put back - or put in other places if they don't belong there. 
            Declutter! (bin? charity? some where else? storage?) 
            Remove all furniture, and clean the floors and baseboards. 
            Dust/ clean furniture   

We are pretty prepared for Christmas present wise now... just a few bits to get....   
Christmas shopping list

1) Kids - Tablet...each/ between them?  On the lookout for a good deal if anyone sees one.    I think we've settled on the Lexibook.between them for now. Done.
2) Kids - Santa bath bombs (x32) from Lush - Christmas Eve Hamper and 1 each for stockings. I managed to find a TMNT bath fizzer in Tesco for Christmas Eve.
3) 2 x Olaf T-shirts (I've given up on Primark getting them in a suitable size so now looking elsewhere).  Found in Primark - £5 each with long sleeves.
4) some more jelly sweets.  bought a tub of swizzles.
5) hubby's presents ... whatever they end up being.  one down, just need to find a gold chain to replace the one he's had for years that broke.  Scrap the chain - will get one if I see one.... really struggling at the moment.
6) A waffle maker (on Grandad's behalf for the kids).  done.
7) Lush - build your own snowman, for my niece.  (soo cool).  found a hottie I bought earlier in year I forgot about..
8) wrapping paper - I have some but need to get the ones for the kids. done
9) Medicine stash
10) First Aid stash
11) New Christmas Towels
12) Christmas crockery - started
13) foil trays and plastic tupperware for leftovers.


  1. Your tree and fireplace look great! I completely agree that artificial trees aren't the same as real, but we're in the same boat as you this year and will re-use our same old tree. Can't wait to hear about all the crafts you get up to, and thanks for the reminder about posting for overseas (I really must do this tomorrow!). #ChristmasCountdown