Portable North Pole – Make Christmas Magic

Any parent knows that the magic of Christmas lies in Santa – be that visiting him, or even better, receiving a personalised video message from him to treasure! 

Many of my Mummy friends last year posted videos their little ones had received from Santa at the PNP – Portable North Pole. I was considering one for little man last year but he really had no idea what was going on – this year he is recognising Santa so I thought it’d be the start of a great tradition. 

When making your own premium video message from Santa you have a variety of options to choose from. These are just a few:

  • naughty or nice list, or a bit of both
  • where Santa relays his message from
  • what’s on your child’s wish list
  • photos of your child (including events through the year, favourite toys etc. that Santa can mention) 
I was astonished at the amount of information you can input, and was getting rather excited myself. You really can personalise it so much so that it is completely unique to the individual child. 
Of course I had to have a preview before little man watched it, and I could not stop smiling all the way through! Little man loved it too, he kept pointing & smiling at Santa. I will definitely be continuing this for years to come. 
A premium 6 minute long video message from Santa costs just £2.99, and a bonus is that 5% of each purchase goes to children’s hospitals. 
I am happy to say that I am able to offer my readers 20% off digital products in the store with code BLG20BKP until 1st January 2014, in order to Make Christmas Magic. 
I was given this product for free for the purposes of this post. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.

Christmas crafts – Salt dough decorations

I decided this year that I wanted my Christmas tree to consist of more handmade/homemade and traditional decorations, rather than my usual modern pink & silver look. I was looking around Pinterest for some decoration ideas and there was a lot of salt dough – I’ve never tackled it before so thought I would give it a go with little man. I especially wanted to make hand print Santa’s – turns out little man didn’t and he just kept trying to eat it! I figured that he wasn’t going to cooperate this year so I did them all myself in the end! I also decided to get him when he was asleep on Daddy and I ended up making a footprint reindeer instead (easier than the hand as he kept curling his fingers up!)

The recipe & method I used was:

  • 1 cup plain flour, 1 cup salt, and 1/2 a cup water 
  • combine together in a bowl, to a pliable dough
  • roll out 
  • use cutters to make Christmas shapes (not forgetting to put holes in them to put ribbon through!)
  • place on a baking tray and bake on the lowest heat for around 3 hours, or until hard.

I didn’t get around to painting them straight away, but obviously you need to let them cool first before you do this – I just used your standard poster paints – and then they need sealing. For this I used PVA glue, but I think next time I will use varnish as the glue kept ‘rolling’ up and it spoiled a couple of them – especially the footprint – which I was disappointed with but I just left it in the end as I was being a pregzilla and getting frustrated. I would also use glitter next time, too. I then threaded different ribbons through them, and this is the finished result!

I’m quite pleased with them for a first attempt. What do you think?

Next on my agenda is paper snowflakes. Have you done any Christmas crafts this year? 

Our 1st family Christmas

We’re finally back at home after barely being here since Christmas Day. We’ve had a fun action packed Christmas – it’s been amazing; everything we wished for, for all these years, and I can’t wait until next year as little man will be able to open his own presents and understand just that little bit more! 

Christmas Eve

I sent hubby out with little man so I could get on with a few last minute bits; he said he had to get me a couple more pressies anyway. I decorated the Xmas cake, then I made mince pies, and then decided to make coconut ice while I was at it. Then I finished on the pressie wrapping! We all sat down (well, J played and crawled!), and I was just singing and dancing around like a crazy woman and J laughed at me! He was finally in bed at 8 pm so we ordered fish & chips, and then we got all the presents out! I actually burst into tears (of happiness) as I was so happy that we had finally gotten this far, when a couple of years ago I thought it would never happen. I couldn’t sleep with excitement, and when it turned midnight I tried waking hubby up to open our presents but he wasn’t having any of it!

Christmas Day

I still couldn’t sleep well and woke at 3 am and 5 am, both times trying to wake hubby up again, but to no avail! Eventually we both woke up around 7 am and he caved in, yay! Little man wasn’t awake so we thought we’d get ours out of the way while waiting for him to wake, and then when we finished we were just sat there waiting, and waiting… I decided I was going to go into his room and put his clothes away to make some noise, when he eventually decided to wake up at 8.20 am! He had his bottle and nappy changed, and then we set to him opening his presents! Obviously he had no idea what was going on or what to do, so Daddy helped him open them. He started getting bored I think as he was grumbling, so we had a rest. My Mum wanted to see him open a couple of presents over Skype anyway so we waited until she was ready and then we did some more. Once the opening was over we let him play with all his new toys (in his new ball pit!) and we got ready to go to the in-laws. We had dinner pretty much as soon as we got there (little man loved his first Christmas dinner!), then we opened even more presents! Safe to say we were all spoiled, though I’m not going to add pictures of our presents as I’ve taken too many! Though he got a fab tent which 3 of us spent ages crawling in & out of with him, he loves it! We had some tea there as well then we left at 8 pm and J fell asleep in the car, meaning he was wide awake when we got home and didn’t go to sleep until 11 pm…

Boxing Day

We woke before J again so we just laid in bed talking, and then he eventually woke up at 9 am, a long lie in! He must have been shattered from Xmas Day as he was awake for a long time and it was full of excitement. We were going to my Mum & step-Dad’s in the afternoon and staying the night. As soon as we got there J got stuck into opening even more presents – he got a baby walker as his main present and he loves pulling the phone off and trying to put it back on! He’s not quite up to walking with it yet though! He had his second Xmas dinner and then we settled him down and got him to bed. Now, we were supposed to be having a Chinese takeaway so they had gotten some crispy duck pancakes for us to have while we were waiting for the delivery… As it turned out, all of the Chinese takeaways where they live were closed, so we ended up with a Chinese starter and an Indian main course! It was a lovely curry though. 

The day after Boxing Day

We had gotten money to go to an American style restaurant called Damon’s, who are famous for their ribs and we love going. We stayed in the motel too. My Mum was looking after J overnight, but it was also the anniversary of my Nanna’s death so we left in the morning and took him back before we went, so she could spend the day on her own for a bit of reflection. We made sure we got to the restaurant for cocktail hour (half price cocktails) we managed 6 cocktails between us for £15, bargain! Then we were called to our table and I had already decided I was having ribs, of course! Neither of us could manage to finish our meal as there was so much, but I made sure I finished my ribs…

Christmas Meme

Well this is the kind of post that people usually get tagged in, I didn’t, but want to join in anyway as I’ve enjoyed reading some other answers and love talking about Christmas!

What’s your favourite thing about Christmas?

Well, there are so many things I love about Christmas! One of my most favourite things though is decorating the house with glitter and sparkle and prettiness! And also decorating presents with bows and ribbon!

What is your favourite make-up look for the festive season?

I have to be honest I barely wear make-up these days, I usually only go the whole hog on special occasions or a night out, which is a rarity these days! On Christmas Day though I’ll usually just go for a bit of mascara and lip gloss. 

Real or fake tree?

I do love real trees, they do have a much more festive feel and can be recycled, so also good for the environment, but we have a fake one. 

Giving or receiving presents?

I’m not going to lie and say I don’t love receiving pressies, but I do love giving them much more. I plan it throughout the year, listening out for what people want/need, and then make a mental list, so I know they will get something they will really appreciate. I made hampers full of home-made edible treats last year which everyone really loved!

Do you open your presents in the morning or evening?

We usually alternate each year and go to family in the afternoon, so we open presents from family then, and then from each other in the evenbing when we get home. We have more on Boxing Day too from visiting the other lot of family! This year though now we have little man, we will be opening all our presents at home in the morning, and then family in the afternoon.

What’s your favourite Christmas film?

Oh, I love lots of Christmas films, but I’m going to say The Snowman as it was always a tradition growing up that I would watch it on Christmas morning before opening presents. 

What is your favourite Christmas food?

Crispy roast potatoes! I know I can have them any time of the year but I always look forward to them on Christmas Day! Other than that I would say Christmas pudding with loooooooooads of double cream, so naughty but nice!

I’m going to tag Pow! Supermum!, and anyone else who wants to join in!