FIRST CHRISTMAS: new traditions

Today Josephine met Father Christmas for the first time. We went to a lovely little garden centre that had been turned into a winter grotto, with my Nan, sister, cousin and her little girl. Phiney looked at the lines of trees, thousands of sparkling lights and the two reindeer, Stardust and Twinkle, with wonder. Christmas truly is magical when you have a baby in tow. Just watching her take it all in, hearing her 'ohhh' and 'ahhh', was the sweetest thing.

I've been thinking recently of the Christmas traditions we'll build as a family, and I think taking Josephine to see Father Christmas will definitely be one of them. We're already starting to develop little rituals - we open Phiney's advent calender together every evening, with the Christmas snow globe playing Walking in a Winter Wonderland and she absolutely loves it - but I'd love to know what your family's festive traditions are. Where does Father Christmas deliver your children's presents (living room? bedroom? help, I can't decide!) Do you leave him a glass of milk or a tipple of whiskey? Do you open presents before or after lunch?

Ohhhhh...I'm getting excited just thinking about it all :)


  1. Love this post! It must be so exciting to be starting all these new traditions! When we were kids we had a stocking at the end of our beds and presents under the tree. A mince pie and sherry for Father Christmas and don't forget a carrot for Rudolph! My friend and her children leave out reindeer food (oats mixed with a bit of glitter) to feed the others, sprinkle it outside.

    Happy christmas to you and your family xxx

  2. Josephine is such a doll. As for our traditions…Santa only ever left presents in our stockings, which we were allowed as soon as we got up (they still hang on the stairs…even though we are aged between 30 and 19 now!). Any other presents we got were from our parents, siblings or friends. It’s a nice way to do it…all the big stuff comes from real people, not some amazing guy who has no limits or budgets, so our requests were never unreasonable! Happy first Christmas to your new family :)

  3. She looks so sweet. I can understand the excitement! I remember Sam's first xmas. He was dressed as a reindeer, santa and a xmas pudding. As Bella is an early riser I'm sure presents will be opened before 8 am! x

  4. How gorgeous does your darlington girl look. Christmas is so wonderful when you have children. Santa only fills the stockings in our house too, and they go on the end of the bed to be opened on waking.it is pretty standard what goes in the stocking, an orange, some chocolate, a Christmas tree decoration, something to read and a child's request. All other presents are from family and are put under the tree on Christmas Eve. For a long time we opened one present on Christmas Eve and that was always a new Christmas story which we read before going to bed. Santa is left a thank you for coming note that has a sooty fingerprint the next morning. He also gets a mince pie and a nip of whatever mum might fancy that night (often sloe gin!)
    Of all the traditions I love the decoration one best. Each of my children has their own box of decorations to hang on the tree, saving arguments, and one day they will take their box away and hang those decorations on their own tree.

  5. I wish we had somewhere lovely like that to take Everly! We have a Christmas cave here, but it's rather tacky! I have been thinking a lot about our own Christmas traditions too - we will have a real tree every year, make our own wrapping paper (great kiddy craft!) and generally aim for a handmade or locally made Christmas. Small presents from Father Christmas will go in the stocking, and the rest will be from Mum and Dad (overall we will follow the four gifts of want/need/wear/read). As a child we always opened up presents in the lounge room first thing in the morning, before breakfast - so much fun!
    P.S. That first photo is all kinds of magical, and that last photo - SOOO cute!

  6. I want to take my nephew to see Father Christmas - but he's already seen him twice and is now getting a wee bit over excited about the whole Christmas thing. Our stocking always came to our bed - and then we'd run downstairs and see all our presents under the tree.. Stockings opened in mum and dads - or if we couldn't wait in either mine or my brothers bedroom! And then we'd have our main presents after church and before lunch.

    I love family traditions - and it must be really excited working out your own.. I love my tree decorating ritual - mulled wine and Elf! I think that's the best thing about being a grown up with my own house - being able to have a tree and decorate it myself!

    Enjoy making new traditions and hopefully see you soon x

    ps Josephine's coat is SO cute!

  7. Such a magical time and traditions in the making - all that wonderment.

    Nina x

  8. Family First for A job, a home, your finances under control, a safe neighbourhood to live in, a secure retirement and a few of life’s small pleasures (going on holiday, getting your hair done, going out to dinner). These all contribute to healthy families by Family First.