I can't let this Christmas 2014 come and go without telling you who the retailers are that made our Christmas this year. It is still Christmas here, in my home, by the way. I adhere, being Irish, to the Irish tradition of taking the decs down on 6th January. So tomorrow is the Feast of the Epiphany and tonight is 12th Night.
IrelandThe Irish call Epiphany the Feast of the Epiphany or traditionally Little Christmas or "Women's Christmas" (Irish: Nollaig na mBan). On the feast of the Three Kings, women traditionally rested and celebrated for themselves after the cooking and work of the Christmas holidays. The custom was for women to gather on this day for a special meal, but on the occasion of Epiphany accompanied by wine, to honor the Miracle at the Wedding at Cana. Today, women may dine at a restaurant or gather in a pub in the evening. They may also receive gifts from children, grandchildren or other family members on this day. Other Epiphany customs, which symbolize the end of the Christmas season, are popular in Ireland, such as the burning the sprigs of Christmas holly in the fireplace which have been used as decorations during the past twelve days.
I was sent a very welcome Christmas Stocking by House of Fraser. I am happy to say that each and every item became a beautiful gift, with a lot of thought put in to each and every one. The two beautiful candles you see there were given, one to Aaron's teacher and one to his Teacher's Assistant.
So, on the last day of term, I put each candle in a Christmas Gift Bag each with a (thoughtfully written) Christmas card and candle.
I was very emotional (even cried before leaving the classroom) saying goodbye to Aaron at school this morning (Monday 5th January) as I have enjoyed the quality time with him everyday over Christmas. I was even more emotional at the thank you note I got from the Teacher's Assistant. Ah bless:
We got lots of t-shirts from BuyTShirtsOnline, just before Christmas, which included a creativity pack. Every iron on print was a variation on the Minions from Despicable Me, which thankfully we all LOVE. So this was the making of our boxing day, and my niece (God Daughter) was in charge of the creative team :-) I knew this was the right thing to get her, because she spent 90 minutes in the River Island Make a T-Shirt section of Lollibop! Oh you can see my Christmas podge in the photo below, eeek, and that is even with having pretty much no appetite due to 3 weeks of FLU! Literally for the whole festive period I have a very late lunch and then that does me for dinner too - so unlike me as I am strictly a three full square meals a day girl. Haven't had my daily porridge in weeks either. I know that is a post-school-run thing but I haven't even had it today, so despite the flu being on its way out, I don't think my appetite is fully back.
Just before we left, my niece had finished all of the ironing on, so we had a group photo for posterity, but after we left she began the fun work of gluing on ribbons and glitter. The ribbon said "Merry Christmas" on it, and you can see where she began to do it, in the pic below the one of Aaron. I can't wait to see them again to see the finished results. She didn't get to do anymore work on mine as I wore it home - oooops!
The next THANK YOU goes to Tesco. I was sent a VERY large food hamper, full of their finest* fare just before Christmas, and it's NEARLY all consumed now, so I decided to empty it the other day. I had no where to put it so it went up high above the kitchen cupboards, with my other Tesco (picnic) hamper, which incidentally I also received full of Tesco finest* products but that one was at an event, rather than sent to me, like this one. Anyway, I digress. Oh and this one came with champagne! Absolutely amazing contents, but it's now been upcycled. My cousin and Aunt visited the other day and could not believe how many toys we have in the sitting room. My cousin said I should get a toy box (we have a couple in the kitchen already) and the thought stayed in my head like an ear worm. So, this morning I did this. Thanks Tesco finest*
Yes, there is stuff to the left and right of it, so I still have more "toy" work to do..... Need to box away the more baby-ish items for starters....
Moving on nicely from the above, I have a HUGE thank you for Toys R Us. We lost Aaron's iceman and pacman about 8 months ago, and he has asked about their whereabouts EVERY day since.
He even started to suggest recently that Santa may be able to sort the problem, as neither hubby nor I could find them in any shops or online.
As I know it is us that acts as Santa, that just gave me a whole heap of worry and I kept putting it out of my mind.
On 23rd December I went shopping with Aaron and as I had the flu, and Daddy was at work, my only option to have a chance of actually doing any undisturbed shopping was to put Aaron in the shopping centre's creche which he adores anyway, so no worries there!
This was us as we set off. Him on his scooter, after we got off the bus. I took this pic, as he read, unprompted the word "look" on the road. He is uncomfortably leaning over as he knows I want to get the word in the pic. So despite me being shocked (on Instagram) the other night when he read ZOO in a book, without me asking him to, this photo memory is making me realise it is the second time of late he has done so. Both with oo words, so he clearly has learned those. I must tell his teachers.
In the shopping centre I got things for Daddy, my Dad, my brother in law, etc etc etc... I then spoke to Daddy and asked him to get a spiderman mask Aaron wanted, as the shopping centre no longer has a Disney Store. On second thoughts I rung him back, and said no, I will leave Aaron in the creche another hour and go to Toys R Us and get it myself. It was the best decision I ever made, as I ran into an AMAZING member of staff in there called Tom, and he found me Ice Man AND Pacman!!!! Nobody had been able to do this before..........! I gushed at him and said "you have made our Christmas" as I KNEW Aaron would be thrilled. Opening those got a better reaction than his main present, and he felt like Santa had solved all his problems AND HAS played with them everyday since. You can see them pride of place in front of the telly in the pic above!!!
Here he is Christmas morning bless him:
Wow, to remember his reaction to opening Pacman I have just watched a video of him opening all of his presents and it reminds me how VERY bad my flu was. My voice sounds TERRIBLE. Wow, watching that back in 20 years I won't forget I had flu this Christmas! I feel very sad that it effected my marbles, as I have no photos of me and Aaron together over the Christmas days. In fact, me, who has been known to take 170 photos on just one special day out, only took 119 from 23rd December to today. That just shows the fog I went into for weeks with this flu. The camera wasn't an extension of me, as I wasn't even the normal me. I was curled up in front of the TV or playing with Aaron the majority of the time. He didn't have to compete with my computer for my time, not at all. He had my attention 100% as my bloggy break testifies to. Glad we got so many pics in the run up to Christmas, during advent!
Another "retailer" I want to thank is Street Hub, as that is where I sourced our gift for my Sister-in-Law who incidentally is Aaron's Godmother.
I love that Street Hub is a collaborative of lots of BOUTIQUE retailers, and that your chosen item comes in the shopping bag of where your item is from, in this case Collectif. Aaron's Aunt adores the Felicity Fur Collar Jumper I got her, and loves that the fur collar is detachable! P.S. Street Hub has a SALE on now! As you can see below, you always know, when browsing, which retailer the item is from. I didn't realise till looking at the shopping bag, but there you are:
The final thank you goes to a Manufacturer rather than a Retailer. I have done a lot of housework of late and I own two Dysons. A Dyson DC59 and a Dyson Cinetic DC54, and they both make life so so so much easier. I will be blogging about how and why soon! But, if you are spiritual in any way, I will just briefly say, that dense old energy lingers on our floors, and at lower levels, so if you are making any changes for the New Year, I would set up a sweeping or vacuuming routine, daily if possible, just like they do in Bali.
Bye for now, Liska xxx