Celebrations – Let the countdown begin!

1 December, the first official day of summer in New Zealand and the big countdown to Christmas Day has begun!

Let the Countdown begin!

In our home we also have the special celebration of Sophie’s 5th Birthday coming up and her last day at Kindergarten.  She will start school next term and is very excited!  Charlotte is nervously awaiting her first performance in a dance show at a real theatre and we are all going to have a busy month of making, baking, dancing, wrapping and celebrating.

The November Christmas deadlines to the UK have forced me into being organised early and the poor credit card has taken a beating.  Thankfully I’ve not been short of helpers to make cards, write tags, apply stickers and stamps and choose gifts…

Packing, wrapping, writing, stamping...

Here’s the big ‘Countdown’ in black and white (with a few important events of colour in the mix).

Whether or not we stick to the countdown and achieve all the goals is another matter… (I shall be updating with links every day!).

Each little drawer of the advent nativity scene is stuffed with notes corresponding with the list below, as well as little surprises for the girls.  Let’s get those sleigh bells ringing, cookers busy baking, toes tapping and vocal chords singing, tra la, la, la….!

Advent nativity scene

The Countdown (Progress updates linked up every day!)

  1. Get the decorations out from under the stairs and enjoy rediscovering them all, along with the lovely Christmas story books I’ve slowly been adding to each year.
    1 December and up she goes!
  2. Put up the Christmas tree!
    (Sophie’s first SCHOOL VISIT.)
    Christmas Carols & Writing Workshop: Let’s Get Lyrical!
  3. Friday Christmas movie night (we’ll be tired, so time to take it easy on a Friday evening, eat pizza, chocolate and relax).
    (Charlotte goes to WAINUI SUMMER POOL with whole school for the day!)
    Christmas in the garden & at the beach.
  4. Make Pohutukawa tree decorations and be thankful for new life in the garden and aware of making the most of every moment of our own lives.
    (Visit a neighbour in the afternoon to celebrate her daughter’s Birthday)
    (See Making, Baking, Coughing & Spluttering for Pohutukawa decorations)
  5. Weave Christmas heart decorations and think of all those we love near and far.
    (Charlotte DANCE SHOW REHEARSAL at studio.)
    (Sophie pony riding.)
    (See Making, Baking, Coughing & Spluttering for heart decorations)
  6. Make Christmas cards for teachers.
    (Sophie’s KINDI CHRISTMAS PARTY with Zappo Magician.)
    You know you’re a Mum when… (glitter takes over the house after a weekend of making decorations & cards)
  7. Write Christmas cards for friends.
    Making, Baking, Coughing & Spluttering
  8. Make paper chains and think of the way we are all linked by love.
    (Sophie goes to CAPITAL E with Kindi for the Woodland Christmas event.)
    The Gallery: White (and paper chains!)
  9. Drop off a present and food donation to collection boxes.
    (PERFORMANCE ASSEMBLY 1.45pm at Charlotte’s school.)
  10. Read about Christmas traditions around the world.
    (Sophie’s second SCHOOL VISIT.)
    (Charlotte goes to CAPITAL E with school for the Woodland Christmas event.)
    (Charlotte has DRESS REHEARSAL for Dance Show at Theatre.)
    Florentine Farewell to Kindi from Sophie
    Our very own ‘Little Blue Penguin’
  11. Charlotte’s CHRISTMAS DANCE SHOW – Matinee & Evening!
    (Sophie going to a FRIEND’S BIRTHDAY PARTY in ‘avo)
  12. Make Florentines for thank you gifts for teachers & Christmas Crackers.
    (Afternoon Christmas party at a friend’s house)
    Delicious Florentines
  13. More Christmas Crackers!
  14. Make Christmas figures out of toilet rolls.
    (Charlotte junior school trip to KHANDALLAH PARK for PICNIC.)
  15. More crafts, music and Christmas reading.  Get and wrap leaving gift for Sophie’s Kindergarten.
    Carols by Candlelight at Waitangi Park
    Charlotte’s ‘Happy Holidays’ gifts to classmates
  16. Make the gingerbread ready for the gingerbread house.
    Crazy, Pink, Gingerbread Fairy House!
  17. Build the Gingerbread House for Sophie’s 5th Birthday Party & decorate house for party.
    Alice at 10 months: Party Planner in the Making
    School’s Out for Summer – Charlotte takes her gifts for teachers and home-made crackers.

    SCHOOL’S OUT FOR SUMMER – Till 3 February 2011!

  18. SOPHIE’S 5TH BIRTHDAY PARTY! Harry the Clown coming!
    The Party!
  19. Relax after the party, eat some chocolate, beat some Christmas drums and enjoy family time.
  20. Go Christmas shopping for Daddy and wrap up some presents.  Visit the ‘Kirkcaldie and Stains Christmas Shop‘ and see the Christmas window displays.
    Chocolate cupcakes and doughnuts
  21. Dance and sing to Christmas music around the piano and celebrate the Summer Solstice.
    Summer Solstice a Washout
  22. Wrap, sing, dance, play, beach, bake…. nearly time to hang up the stockings 🙂
    Paper snowflake decorations
  23. Wrap, sing, dance, play, beach, bake…. think of loved ones far away and make a Christmas video message.
    The Gallery: Love – thinking of our dear family overseas
  24. CHRISTMAS EVE – Family show!
    Christmas Eve Show
    Merry Christmas Kiwi Style 2010!
  26. SOPHIE’S 5TH BIRTHDAY! Presents, cake, balloons, a day of fun & games 🙂

Gear up to see in the NEW YEAR


Welcome Chinese Grandma and Grandad to New Zealand on 8 January 2011!

I am linking up to The Gallery over at Sticky Fingers with this blog post, as the theme this week is ‘Celebrations’!