Posted in Blogmas, Christmas, Lifestyle

The Big Day

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

The big day is finally here! I have now been up for 2 hours already and am so excited to get through the rest of the day. Anyone who’s been lucky enough to get an advent calendar that gives you a chocolate, or whatever type of advent you’ve been getting, today – I am very jealous. Today is the last in our song countdown and well done to any of you who managed to correctly guess what the UK voted as our favourite Christmas song of all time. In my mind, The Fairytale of New York is the perfect description of life – we slag each other off, complain, and just genuinely have those days when we want to turn into a loner and hide from the world. But then Christmas comes and we accept that we do really love each other anyway!

 

So I’ll go into all about my exciting presents in another post, but for today’s day 25 of Blogmas I thought I would share my tips and tricks for surviving today. This is the day that most students love and hate. We’re warm, well fed, surrounded by family, and there’s no question over who’s in charge of buying the next lot of toilet roll. However, we’re subjected to questions, we have to wake up at a normal time, we’re surrounded by family and still being in pyjamas at 6pm is generally frowned upon. There will be those certain questions we don’t want to be asked, things we don’t want to do, and very few hiding spots. Even worse when you’re expected to help out with the day! So how do I plan on surviving today?

 

For some reason, the older ones in the family often love to ask me when I plan on finding myself a boyfriend. Now, please trust me when I say I would love to tell them the full honest truth, however it would cause a lot of problems and this probably isn’t the right day to start explaining to my 85 year old granny that I am never going to find myself a boyfriend.

Another standard question is “How is university going?” Please be aware, this is more often than not just a casual question. Don’t go into how much you hate your course, are struggling with the workload, hate the flatmates, or any of that. A simple “Yeah, it’s good thanks! Just glad to be home for a change” will suffice. If they continue to question you then go for it and tell them everything!

“Have you put on or lost any weight?” Surely I’m not the only one who gets asked this? It drives me insane. I know they’re often asking because they’re worried, however I quickly learnt that the correct response to this is “Probably as much as you have”… instead, the safest option is “I have no idea, no scales at uni.” Then they can be left to decide for themselves.

 

After a few days in your family’s company, you may find yourself dying to be back in your cold student flat, on your own, listening to depressing music and eating ice cream from the tub. When these moments happen, take yourself to the bathroom for 5 minutes. Read some blog posts or tweets, take a deep breath, splash your wrists with some cool water (proven to help cool your skin and calm you down) and then rejoin the celebrations. Either that, or go wash some of the dishes in the kitchen! Not only do you get some time to yourself, but you also get praised and thanked for helping out.

 

The main thing to remember is that you’re only there for a few days. It can be hard, but remember just how excited your family are to see you again, and try and put on a brave face. Worst case scenario? You’ve ‘accidentally’ booked an earlier flight home than they were expecting!

 

 

Merry Christmas everybody. Have a lovely day, and may your day be filled with peace, joy, harmony, and lots of wine! Oh! And congratulations to 1weekmary who has won my giveaway! 

 

Ktkinnes xxx

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Posted in Blogmas, Christmas, Lifestyle

Family Decorations

Does it scare you that we’re currently 9 sleeps away from Christmas Day? I’m so excited and yet scared at the same time! What am I meant to do with myself when Christmas is over? I never think about that until it’s too late. Almost makes me lose my Christmas spirit before we’ve even reached the top of it.

Day 16 of Blogmas brings us one of my all-time favourite songs and I genuinely will cry if someone insults it. Christmas just wouldn’t be the same if it wasn’t for Slade and Merry Christmas Everybody. Hope you enjoy listening today!

 

 

Today, I wanted to take you on a little tour of my family’s Christmas decorations, so I hope you enjoy them! I could only include some, however I will (hopefully) let you see them all soon!
 

 

Ktkinnes xxx

Posted in Blogmas, Christmas, Lifestyle

Christmas Tag

We’re so close to the big day now I can practically smell the turkey roasting in the oven! On this lovely 15th day of Blogmas, I thought I would do a Christmas Tag! However, before we get into it, we have to tick today’s song off the Christmas Countdown! Today’s song is Merry Christmas Everyone! When I was younger I didn’t realise the difference between this one and tomorrow’s but I feel like it’s important, especially when going through the nation’s favourite songs in the way of a countdown. It was only when getting the link I realised I’ve never actually seen the music video for this song before!

 

 

So yes, Christmas Tag. I’ve actually never done one of these before and I’m so excited to answer the questions. Have you ever done the Christmas Tag before? Let’s begin!

 

  1. What’s your favourite Christmas film?
    Wow this is a difficult first question! To be honest, I actually had to come back to this one. It was a lot more difficult than you would expect! It varies from year to year, although I have 2 films that I simply have to watch every Christmas no matter what. I refuse to choose between them! The first would be The Santa Clause starring Tim Allen – Charlie is an adorable child and I think all of us at some stage have wished our dad would become Santa magically so we could travel the world with him on Christmas Eve. My second choice is Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas. I can’t remember how old I was when I first saw this, but it’s the one film I remember watching as a child. There’s something magical about combining Disney and Christmas, am I right?
  2. Have you ever had a White Christmas?
    Yes! When I was younger, and lived on the east coast of Scotland, we had so many White Christmases! Well, I say that, we only lived there for 5 years. I don’t really remember much about them, like I remember the odd fact. One story that we get reminded of frequently was one year my dad’s parents came across to spend Christmas with us. I would’ve been anything between the age of 3 and 8, and my Granda was taking great delight in winding us up on Christmas Eve – pretending he could hear Santa etc, you know the usual stuff to get kids excited and make them go to bed early. We got up the next day to find that Santa’s reindeer had left hoof prints and sleigh tracks in the snow on our driveway! We didn’t have a chimney or fireplace so we used to leave the door unlocked for Santa to come into the house. Turns out Granda had just used his walking stick to make the marks but it was the coolest thing ever!

    dsc00998
    Our house when we lived in Forfar – this picture was taken years after we moved out
  3. Where do you usually spend your holiday?
    Normally, we spend it in our house in Lisburn. There have been the few times we’ve been in my mum’s Mum’s house, just for simplicity when Dad has been involved in the church on Christmas Day, and then last year we spent the holiday’s at my aunt and uncle’s in Dundee! Rachel doesn’t like being away from home on Christmas Day as she feels it just isn’t the same.
  4. What’s your favourite Christmas song?
    Noooo! I refuse to answer this one. I can honestly say I don’t like “I Want A Hippopotamus for Christmas” however I love the rest of them! If I really had to pick one, I’d have to vote for ‘White Christmas’. It’s such a classic!
  5. Do you open any presents on Christmas Eve?
    No, we don’t do this. My parents always tried to keep it as only presents on Christmas Day. The only year we got to open a present on Christmas Eve was the year we got our Christmas jumpers! We were given them half an hour before we went to the midnight service at church. I’ve never been so excited! It was red and I loved it.
    theme-christmas-large
  6. Can you name all of Santa’s Reindeer?
    Rudolph, Dasher, Prancer, Dancer, Comet, Donner, Vixen, Blitzen, and Cupid! Course I can, silly question 😛 I’m obsessed with Christmas!
  7. What holiday traditions are you most looking forward to this year?
    Since we’re at home again this year, I’m really looking forward to our standard routine! Christmas Eve morning is spent polishing cutlery, setting the table, cleaning the house, and preparing whatever food can be sorted the day before. We make sure the tree is lit all day and have Christmas music blaring through the house. Around lunch time, we all rush through the shower so we can get down to see Granny and go to the rugby club for drinks, nibbles, and music. The atmosphere is buzzing! Around 6pm we head home again for a slow cooked lasagne or something similar that can be left in the oven while we’re out. We wash up and then curl up on the sofas to watch It’s A Wonderful Life, before preparing to go to the midnight church service! To this day, even though we know the truth about Santa, Rachel and I are awake early and sit with each other until it’s acceptable to go wake Mum, Dad and Granny up to open presents! We have so many other traditions but this is what I missed last year with us being in Dundee. I can’t even really remember Christmas Eve last year, but it wasn’t right not having to clean and prepare for the day.
  8. Is your Christmas tree real or fake?
    Fake unfortunately. When I have my own house (not flat) I want to have a real tree and a fake one so I can have a themed tree and then a fun one! To be honest though, it doesn’t matter to me whether the tree is real or fake – as long as there is a tree!
  9. What is your all-time favourite food/sweet treat?
    At Christmas? Gotta be Christmas pudding! I know a lot of people will disagree but I adore it!

    xmas
    Rachel’s homemade Christmas Pudding
  10. Be honest: do you like giving gifts or receiving gifts better?
    I love giving gifts the most! It’s so much fun shopping and trying to think of what the other person would love to receive. Every year I go a little overboard, but if we can’t treat the people who’re always there for us then who can we treat?
  11. What is the best Christmas gift you’ve ever received?
    I actually have no idea… Is that bad?  In fact, I’m sitting here trying to remember what Christmas presents I’ve received in the past… I can’t even remember what I was given as a Secret Santa present back in first year of university! That’s quite shocking actually… However, one of my favourite Christmas presents ever was actually what Nuala got me for Secret Santa last year. It’s a mojito making tool! You can get yours here.

    mojito
    My Mojito Master – it’s actually brilliant!
  12. What would be your dream place to visit for the holiday season?
    Oooooh another tough one! I would love to visit somewhere cold where there is definitely snow on Christmas Day!
  13. Are you a pro-present wrapper or do you fail miserably?
    Hahahahahahahahaha I fail miserably every time! I’m the queen of sellotape when it comes to presents.
  14. Most memorable holiday moment?
    Two years ago, my Scottish cousins and my aunt and uncle travelled over to Belfast to spend Christmas with us. There were a few ‘incidents’ that made it a memorable time but one thing that will stick in my memory for quite a while is after dinner. We’ve always played games after dinner – our usual one being Tennis Elbow Foot. It’s an associated word game that’s been in the family for a long time (someone starts with a word then going clockwise you’ve to either say a word related to it or rhyming with it e.g. bat, cave, man, ban, forbid, disallow, allow, etc). There were 12 of us all playing, and after the amount of alcohol consumed, there were some very funny answers! It was also the last Christmas we had with Dad’s uncle Tom, so it stays with me a lot more.
  15. What made you realise the truth about Santa?
    My neighbour decided when I was 9 and Rachel was 6 that we needed to know the truth about Santa. It was crushing. I refused to accept it until I had left primary school though!
  16. Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? Do you stick to them?
    I always make them, but can rarely stick to them. I’m going to try really hard in 2017 though, I promise!
  17. What makes the holidays special for you?
    Just being able to spend time with family without the arguments. Everyone knows I love Christmas, but the main reason behind it is it’s the one time of year my parents tried to hide their arguments from us so we could enjoy the holidays. It’s just so magical, and I hope someday to be able to make it this magical for my children.

 

Ktkinnes xx 

Posted in Blogmas, Christmas, Lifestyle

What’s on my shopping list?

Wow okay time is flying by now and we’re fast approaching the big event, yet my shopping list doesn’t seem to be getting any smaller. Anyone else with the same problem?

It’s for this reason that I start planning extremely early. In fact, the book I now use for jotting down blogging ideas used to be my presents book! During the year, if I thought of anything I could buy for anyone, I would write it down on their page in the book. Anything I had done would get highlighted so I couldn’t accidentally double up on presents.

 

But I’m getting sidetracked… again… Who’s ready for today’s Christmas Countdown song? Today we have Sleigh Ride – the original version without singing! Maybe something to leave on while you continue reading?

 

 

The images are lovely!

So, where was I? Oh yes, presents! I suppose it’s now safe to say I had Nuala for Secret Santa (since we exchanged presents back during our Christmas dinner), and I’ve now got a rough idea of what I’m buying everyone else.

 

Rachel has been asking for a mermaid tail blanket a lot recently, and with no one else in the family having a clue where to buy them or how I decided I would pick one up for her. I bought her this in purple and in the biggest size possible so it came to a total of £15. Now normally I would go all out on Rachel but this year I plan on keeping it simple so have bought her some Tinkerbell pyjamas.

 

Mum is always difficult as her birthday is exactly a week before Christmas. She dropped a few hints that she would appreciate some new pyjamas and so Rachel and I have got her some nice ones from Marks and Spencer. I would show you them, however Rachel is doing the purchasing and I am giving her money when I get home tonight!

 

Dad is another difficult person as he never actually gives you any help with suggestions. This year, we’re getting him hard soled slippers as these are the only type he wears and his current ones are wrecked. Again, we’ll put something with these, but he is banned from getting chocolates or sweets from us since his winter wardrobe seems to have come down from the attic about 3 sizes too small! In fact, maybe we should get him a new shirt that actually fits…

 

Granny H is always at ours or at least with us on Christmas Day and so for years Rachel and I have joined together to buy her a present. Like Mum, Granny’s birthday is in December so we tend to leave her Christmas present until after her birthday but this year we were prepared. Rachel went shopping with her to buy stuff for Mum, and Granny spotted a bag that she really liked so Rachel managed to sneak back and buy it.

 

Granny B is simple and yet difficult. You know those people who are happy with anything to the point that you don’t actually know what to buy them? Well we’re still struggling to think of something so please please please if you have any suggestions for an 85 year old woman then they would be greatly appreciated!

 

Nuala‘s secret santa present was a fruit infusing water bottle and an artist sketching set. Nuala’s brilliant at drawing or sketching or whatever you call it, and I would love to be able to showcase some of her artwork for you all sometime, but that’s why I went for these two.

 

Wow that’s a small present list this year. The past couple of years we’ve have my aunt, uncle and cousins with us so we’ve have another 5 people to buy for so this year looks a little strange. I have bought presents for Jordanne (and Leon) and Cesca but I went a little crazy and have actually forgotten what all I bought!

 

What’s on your present shopping list?

 

Ktkinnes xx

 

Posted in Blogmas, Christmas, Lifestyle

Quotes for Christmas!

 

Well that’s been a fun couple of days in London and I’m now curled up in bed getting some more revision done for these exams. Considering I’m the only one in the flat with exams this semester. Well, Jason has tests to do but they don’t count for anything.
London was incredible! And now that we’re on the 12th day of Blogmas, I’ve finished opening my Tanya Burr Beauty Advent Calendar! Would you be interested in a post about what is in it? Let me know below or tweet me! Today’s song on the Christmas Countdown is Driving Home For Christmas. While I’m not heading home for Christmas just yet, this always is on my playlist for travelling home at this time of year.

 

Now for today’s blogmas post (day 12) I wanted to share my favourite Christmas quotes with you! Last year I wrote these down and put them in my refillable advent calendar with a chocolate each day.

 

 

  • “He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree” – Roy L. Smith

 

  • “Christmas isn’t a season. It’s a feeling” – Edna Ferber

 

  • “I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year” – Charles Dickens

 

  • “Christmas is the day that holds all time together” – Alexander Smith

 

  • “Christmas, my child, is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it’s Christmas.” – Dale Evans Rogers

 

  • “Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little more!” – Dr Seuss

 

  • “Christmas is not as much about opening out presents as opening out hearts” – Janice Maeditere

 

  • “Unless we make Christmas an occasion to share our blessings, all the snow in Alaska won’t make it ‘white'” – Bill Crosby

 

  • “One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas Day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.” – Andy Rooney

 

  • “Christmas gift suggestions: to your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.” – Oren Arnold

 

  • “Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.” – Norman Vincent Peale

 

  • “Probably the reason we all go so haywire at Christmas time with the endless unrestrained and often silly buying of gifts is that we don’t quite know how to put our love into words.” – Harlan Miller

 

  • “Christmas – that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance – a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.” – Augusta E. Rundel

 

  • “Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone.” – Charles Schulz

 

  • “My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?” – Bob Hope

 

Hopefully some of these have caused you to smile, laugh or just think about the way we all view Christmas.

 

Hope you all have a lovely day! Do you have any favourites I haven’t included there?

 

Ktkinnes xxx