Sharing at Christmas

Parenting when you are no longer in a relationship together is difficult. This is especially the case at Christmas time. Along with the presents and the grub Christmas is about family. It brings people home from foreign lands and you visit and talk to people you might not have done for the whole year. We all have that one Grandaunt somewhere. So when your family is not the traditional model you have to change the way you approach things. This will by my fourth Christmas as a single Mammy so I’ve learned a few things over the years.

The first Christmas I was on my own I spent the day crying. Continue reading “Sharing at Christmas”

What is Yulefest?

For those of you who don’t know, I am based in the Medieval Capital of Ireland. That’s Kilkenny! As with towns and city’s across the world huge efforts are put into making sure that Kilkenny is an attractive place to visit. Luckily we have the year round attractions from Kilkenny Castle to The Smithwicks Experience to keep people more than entertained.

However, that wasn’t enough for us here in The Marble City. We wanted to make Kilkenny’s shine even brighter and came up with the fantastic initiative of Yulefest. Last year was it’s inaugural schedule and it kind of snuck under the radar for the most part. This year there’s no missing it. Continue reading “What is Yulefest?”

We Have No Fireplace, How Will Santa Deliver Our Toys?

≈I was sent this product, all opinion are my own!≈

I’ve tried so hard to resist mentioning the big C!!! I do think year after year it’s starting earlier and earlier and my fear is it will ruin the magic. That being said I do enjoy it… see I still haven’t said the word!!!

There are loads of gimmicks that try and get parents to part with their hard earned cash. That Elf on the Shelf being one!!!! Normally I love a bit of devilment but I have enough to remember without being in bed at night and remembering that I forgot to move the bloody doll.

So I pass on lots of fads because I don’t have that extra money or the extra energy that many require. Years ago things were so much more simple and not everything was as complicated.

One complication I came across a couple of years ago was when we moved into our new home and pride of place in our sitting room was a flue-less gas fire! Sounds cool eh? Well it really is, until you are trying to come up with a story to explain how Santa delivers his toys to a house with no fireplace!

The usual excuses were spouted. Santa finds a way. He’s magic. We leave a key out! Each one met with skepticism or perhaps it was just that I thought they were feeble explanations so I didn’t sell the ideas as well as I could.

Then boom like a gift from the Gods I came across Santa’s Magical Fireplace. This gorgeous concept contains a small replica of a red fireplace, vile of magic dust and a stunning book to read. The glossy book with a rhyming story explains how Santa can get into the homes of children without chimney’s or fireplaces.

They scratched at their heads,

and  tugged at their beards,

some ideas accepted , but others too weird,

But at last, cried EUREKA!!! with a smile on their face,

They’d invented Santa’s Magical Fireplace!

My kids fell in love. We spent at least fifteen minutes trying to figure out what wall we were going to put the fireplace on. ‘Its going to get four feet tall!’ exclaimed my eldest.

Although Santa had managed other years…… this year we were helping him save his energy because we were doing the magic.

fireplace

From a parents point of view (that’s me) I love the fact it came with a book. It’s going to be our bedtime story on Christmas Eve  I didn’t say it!!! I didn’t! Damn it. We will sit together and read the book on the night we put it out for the Big Man and I think it’s the beginning of a new little tradition.

I was lucky enough to have one sent to me but you can get your Magical Fireplace from www.santasmagicalfireplace.com

Christmas Carnage

I do enjoy Christmas. I’m not fanatical about it but i’m no Grinch either. As the childer will be with their Dad the next two weekends, today was the day to erect the tree. I wanted them to be a part of it and not just… sit there and watch me do it type of participation but I was fully prepared to allow them to adorn the tree however they saw fit.

This is a special Christmas for me and my family as it is our first one in our new home. Since December ’13 until August of this year myself and my brood were lucky enough to live with my mother. In August I got the amazing news that I had been housed with a housing agency. So this year will be memorable to wake up to Santa in my own gaff!

Enough of the sentiment and back to the fun we were all going to have putting up the tree. My mother arrived with the stuff. As I pulled out the tree I remembered the day it was bought. I said to her…. guess how much this tree cost me?……. €18! As I removed it from it’s cardboard jail it was all too apparent why it only cost €18. I’ve come across more lush cactus than this tree.

Undeterred we soldiered on. I fleshed the branches out as best I could and then looked to where it was going to stand. The whole sitting room had to be changed around to fit in the tree. So what started out as tree time had turned into 60 minute makeover. I was already exhausted. We found it’s home and I put on the lights. Ready to allow the children to put on the baubles.

The enthusiasm was heart warming. I handed them some baubles and let them at it. We all sang Christmas carols as we put them on…….. no we bloody didn’t, it’s not some true movie you are watching here with your one out of little house on the prairy… this is real life!!!! The Sun and Moon put on literally two decorations before they got fed up.

But my wee little Star…. she showed so much determination. Back and forth into the container and tried with all her might to put them on. She wasn’t very successful but she was really enjoying it. When the lights went on… all four of them…. she ooohed and aaaaahed. Bless her little cotton socks.

The finished result was decidedly underwhelming but I don’t care. I have my own home and I have plenty of time to build up my collection of festive ornaments. It’s not the decorations that makes the season special. It’s family and friends, my own home and my three (sometimes) lovely children gathered at my feet…. killing each other!!!

Thanks For Reading

Be Well

Ellen