Nearly October can I mention the C word yet ? 


Christmas ……there I said it ! 

I love Autumn, as much as I love the Summer there is is nothing nicer than snuggling up in your PJ’s under a cosy throw with candles lit ,fire on with it’s comforting glow. Autumn dramas on TV , walking the dog wrapped up on my warm coat and thoughts of Christmas in my head. I am a planner and a list addict and I already have my list for Christmas gifts done. Planning the decor and events to attend get me excited and sometimes the day itself doesn’t give me as much pleasure as the run up to it , does anyone else feel like that ? Its because we have no children in the house on Christmas morning now and it isn’t the same. I love church and carols and Christmas markets and making yummy treats for the Grandchildren and like to be organised .This year as we have a little puppy I am thinking of getting a table top tree as he is small and I can see him now getting under the tree and chewing wires or ornaments. I have to have a look around, the stores already have lots of Christmas goodies in and today its Christmas on QVC. Are you excited about Christmas? Even though I do everything myself and wouldn’t have it any other way. 

X Dawn 


Get a flocked tree she said. …note to self. ..shut up!


 Happy 1st if December. Our Elf Jingles visited this morning bringing our advent which is little boxes filled with treats and things to do .They have little notes that say have hot chocolate with marshmallows,watch a Christmas film,help deliver the cards,go to the Christmas market today etc plus some chocolate coins,you have to have gold chocolate coins. Well the countdown has well and truly begun. 

I failed getting all my gifts by three as one was out of stock and the other two I changed my mind at the last minute but all in all I have done well.I am wrapping Monday and it will all be done. 

My tree,where do I start . My tree arrived and I couldn’t wait to get it out of the box,I was covered in white flock and dust,my floor , furniture it was everywhere , what the heck was I thinking ?  here is the mess that the blooming tree made getting it out and assembling it. 

It took ages to clear up I have to dust the furniture , sweep and hoover the floor and put my clothes in the wash and I was getting so frustrated with it as everytone I moved it we had another snow storm.  

Here is the devil tree all decked out ,  I do love how it looks but my gosh it is a nightmare!

I am dreading taking it down and packing it away again! 

How is your prep coming along ? 

X Dawn 




Ordered a tree 


We have a Christmas tree coming on Monday . I have decided on a 6 foot flocked tree with berries and pine cones .  I walked around the shops and couldn’t decide so I looked on line and got a £40 saving so it was £89.99. I am going to but a tree skirt and a few more decorations for it on Saturday, I have always had a red gold and green theme for my tree and I have decorations from when John was a boy and my kids were little and I do get a few new ones every year. I got John some angel wings for the tree because both his parents have passed away. I saw them and thought he would love them . I am aiming to put the tree up during the first week of December and as I have done since the film was released I play National Lampoons Christmas Vacation while I decorate the tree. It is one of my favourite films and it gets me in the Christmas spirit. I will take some photos when it is up,I always do it on my own but Emily said she is putting the angel on top so I said she could . John got her a little pink tree for her desk with pink and purple baubles to match her room .

What sort of tree do you have ? 

X Dawn 

It’s November which means only one thing.


Christmas countdown, well  it is November…like it or not Christmas is just around the corner. I love all things Christmas and I am armed with my trusty Christmas planner which is full of lists , I love a list, my planner has the following lists, gifts,cards,menu for Christmas week,food and drink shopping,non food shopping,makes and bakes,ideas for my advent (it is a little one with drawers which I fill with to do’s) for example,have hot chocolate and watch a Christmas film or bake cookies,school events ,my Grandaughter  lives with me so I get involved with school stuff,events to attend for example Christmas fete’s,church service,Christmas film etc,decor ideas,also a page for online purchases I make and expected delivery dates.

My Christmas planner 

393761_2464811372159_187842097_n My advent that I use every year

I like to get all of my gifts and get them wrapped by the end of the month, I have a massive roll of brown paper and look online for wrapping ideas , I loved the look of last years  brown paper packages.I used little paper doilies,ribbon and stickers.


I am working through the gift buying and as usual am struggling with my parents, I always give them money and a gift because they have a lot of stuff and don’t really have many hobbies, they do like to take coach trip holidays as my Dad doesn’t drive anymore he likes to read. John and I are planning a shopping day in two weeks and aim to get all of he gifts that I still need then, I will shop for Johns when he is at work,again he is so hard to buy for but I have a few ideas.

I give John a list of things I would like and he chooses some from them and then he always gets me a surprise. I always ask for Yankee candles,perfume,a book,a nice notebook,fluffy socks,smellies,he knows the stuff I use and that’s it, I can never think of anything else to ask, he has good taste so he usually surprises me with something lovely.

My parents are coming for Christmas lunch,the turkey and beef are ordered and the rest of the shopping I will do online and then pop out for fresh items on the 23rd ,I stock up on baking items from now as I add a few to my weekly shop. I buy my cards in the sales after Christmas and I start to write them this week. I am on track and like to be organised so I can enjoy the run up to Christmas.

I would love to say we are on track with the house,we are in the middle of having a bathroom renovation and the bathroom walls are now down to the bare brick,not a place to enjoy a long soak in a bubble bath, I am in and out in a flash, I can’t wait to get it done,we have lots of projects on the go and I know we wont be getting them all done by Christmas but as long as the bathroom and stairs are done and we have new carpet on the stairs I will be pleased.

How are your plans coming along? x Dawn







Christmas Traditions


I love all things Christmas and have a few things we always do,it has changed since my boy’s grew up and left home as when they were here we always gave then new PJ’s on Christmas Eve ,write a letter to Santa and always went to visit Santa and other kids stuff. Here are our traditions for us,the empty nester’s with Grandchildren.

Our Family Christmas Traditions

We always have an advent full of treats and fun stuff to do (2 of us things to do,movies,shopping,etc,kids Christmas crafts,movies and popcorn,baking)

We always go to a Christmas fair

We always go to a Church Carol Service

We always go to see a Christmas Movie at the cinema

Mum (me) always watches National Lampoon’s Christmas vacation when she puts up the tree and the decorations and have done so for years

We always go late night shopping and have a Christmas hot chocolate at our favourite coffee shop

We always put out cookies and milk for Santa and a carrot for the Reindeer on Christmas Eve (my grown up Son’s think this is hilarious)

We always put out our stockings

We always make Gingerbread Men

We always give a gift(s) to those less fortunate and volunteer with fundraising events

What traditions do you follow? ours have changed a little since the boys left home,we do fun things with the Grandchildren and I incorporate these activities into my advent.

x Dawn


More Christmas prep


Hello welcome to my blog,Christmas is coming,so be ready!

Last time I talked about lists,my lists are done,gifts,cards,meals for over Christmas,shopping lists so now I am concentrating on gifts and advent.


I have all of my Grandchildren’s gifts and have crossed them off my list.

I have a small gift for my Son’s partners and have crossed them off my list,have yet to get the main gift for the girls.

I have My mum and Dads small gift that I wrap and give them money ( they are going away and they have everything so they can treat themselves when they are away)

I have half of my Niece and her partner’s and my  Nephew’s and his wife’s.

I have a couple for John

1 of my friends, I can get the other this weekend as it is a book that is being released this week.

I have quite a bit done so am pleased as I am on track to having it all done by the end of November.


I have decided to stick to the brown paper packages that I did last year, I have a huge roll of brown paper that John got from a shop that was closing down years ago,it was three times the size as it is now it has been used for so many things,I loved using it and decorating it and everyone said it was lovely,here is the link to the post

I have to get some sticky labels and ribbon this weekend.


I have a little elf called Jingles she visits the house and leaves little messages and gifts for the children she also brings the advent full of things to do. I have an advent that is made up of numbered drawers and inside maybe a treat or something to do on that day. When I know the kids are coming I make sure there is a treat for them or a something to do that is kid related,have a hot chocolate with marshmallows,or make a friend a Christmas card, I get ideas and start now writing little notes. here is a link to last years post about advent and a few of our traditions.

Here is Jingles our Elf,he leaves notes and little gifts from Santa and sometimes plays tricks on the children,they love jingles and know that Jingles reports back to Santa so they have to be very good. Jingles is a very old vintage elf but so cute,she is called Jingles because she has a bell on her hat.

Emily with Jingles the Elf and her letter from Santa

Emily with Jingles the Elf and her letter from Santa

I hope you are getting on ok with your prep.leave a link to your blog/blog posts about your Christmas in the comments and I can pop in and have a look.

Dawn x

Christmas prep


I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news if you are not a fan of Christmas /Christmas prep,but it is just 79 days until Christmas day,yes you did read that correctly 79 days!

So far I have

*written my gift list

*written my card list

*written my meal plan from Christmas Eve until new years day

*written a food/drinks shopping list (using above meal plans)

*written a non food list

*decided on decor ,not changed my decor but will add a few items if I see anything I like,my themes are as follows. living/dining room traditional red,green and gold decor,items I have collected since leaving my parents,items from the kids childhood etc. My kitchen has a gingerbread/baking theme,I have gingerbread men ornaments on door handles,I have a gingerbread men worktop saver,I decorate my baking trolley with Christmas themed baking items.My front door has a wreath with a snowman on it ,I have had it years so won’t be changing that yet. I do need some indoor lights for my mantle and a set of outside lights for the front of the house.I dot more tea lights and candles around the house ( not when the Grandchildren are here I have battery lights for then).

*I have a wooden advent with little drawers and when I know the children are coming I put little sweets and notes,watch a x mas film with popcorn or make a x mas card for a friend etc and if it is just John and I on a certain day I put little treats or things to do just us, I have always done it and we love it.I have started looking for ideas and putting them in my notebook.

*I have started a makes and bakes ideas list and am adding to it as I find things on Pinterest (it is growing rapidly) I won’t make everything I see but will keep the ideas and recipes for the next few years.

*I have started an events/things to do list and will add to it once I know what we will be doing, It will just be John and I this year,I like going late night shopping and stopping for a hot chocolate,seeing a Christmas film,going to a church service and Christmas fair,plus school events as I am a member of the PFA and fund raise all year,I also attend the carol services and nativity etc and usually serve refreshments at the events.

*I have started buying cards for the family and will buy boxed cards for neighbour’s etc.(this weekend)

Gifts so far

not putting who and cost just in case

Cosy Coupe sit and ride pink car

Large dolly that can have her hair styled

A set of David Walliams kids books

A light up scooter

A drawing projector

A frozen themed art set

A Monster High (freakier style barbie style doll)

A Monster high braid kit ( for making hair braids or bracelets)

A planner

3 smellies sets ( various)

2 tins of celebrations

we are doing some birthday and Christmas shopping again this weekend.I am going to Boots to take advantage of the 3 for 2 offers and will cross quite a few gifts off my list then. I have already had a look in there and have decided what to get ahead of going to buy them.

I have yet to buy children’s wrapping paper and am using my brown paper theme again for the adults this year as I love brown paper.

I have de cluttered the upstairs and most of the downstairs and have sorted my wardrobe and written a list of new items of clothing I need, I got some new ankle boots last weekend as they were on top of my list.

*Given John my list, I give him a list of things I would like and then he can chose a few and then get me a little surprise,we don’t go OTT as we cant really afford to be.My list includes a paperchase personal planner (cheaper version of a filo fax) but I love them and have never had a paperchase one.I adore paperchase! I am into planners and am trying to combine mine into one decent planner.A list of books,some beauty products and a few bits and bobs like fluffy socks,posh chocolate’s etc I will be visiting paperchase this weekend with John so will be dropping a huge hint about the planner I want.

John doesn’t give me a list,he says every year he doesn’t want anything ! so his are all a surprise.

We have a lost of jobs on the house to do but won’t be finishing them before Christmas , one being a new bathroom,we only have one and the sink has a chip in it and the bath has seen better days, I can’t wait to rip it all out!.

All in all I am on target to having all of my gifts bought and wrapped by the end of November.

I love knowing I am done and can enjoy the run up to Christmas and I know I have only the food to get, I can relax and not having to run around like a headless chicken, we are on a budget and we  save all year until now so we have the funds to be able to have a few Christmas shopping spree’s,guilt free. I pick up bargains too in the sales leading up to Christmas to put up for Birthdays in the new year. I usually buy my cards in the sales and I have no clue why I didn’t last year.

It is my Parents Wedding Anniversary on January 2nd so i always organise a family meal and am looking for somewhere to book.

How are your plans coming along? how do you plan and shop for Christmas?

x Dawn