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Advent and Christmas photos

I know, I know.  Waaay too late really.  But you want to know what I was doing when I wasn't writing Advent blogs, don't you?

 We had an Advent candle on the dinner table every night, and said a prayer together (which after ten days Toby could recite along with us; we were quite impressed).  Also Toby had an Advent calendar.  Yay, chocolate!

 We paid a visit to a Christmas fair in Matlock, about 45 minutes north of here.  Lots of handmade stuff to buy, and Toby got his first ride on a roundabout.  He rang that train bell all the way round!


 We put our Christmas lights up, and had many evening walks around the village admiring other people's.  This is Findern village church looking very atmospheric.


 We made and decorated a Christmas cake.  I kept things simple and used coloured fondant and cookie cutters, which was dead easy and meant Toby could help.  We made gingerbread cookies with the same cutters, and stuck fondant on top of those too.

 We attended our first ever Christingle service at the local church on Christmas Eve.  Everyone gets an orange with a candle and other things stuck in it, to symbolise Jesus as the light of the world.  And then everyone prays hard that their kid isn't the one to set themselves or anyone else on fire.

 We made Christmas crackers.  This was one of those "fun family activities" that I thought would be really nice, and instead turned into a "it's Christmas Eve and we still haven't made those stupid crackers!" activity, where Mum and Dad were grimly assembling the things while Toby got bored and started trying to shred all the components.

 We put our (rather large) presents underneath our (rather small) Christmas tree.

 We ate cranberry orange muffins, ham and eggs for Christmas morning breakfast.

We opened presents, of course!  This is the first year that Toby has been old enough to be excited about the whole thing, and it was great.

 Hand-knitted mittens and scarf from my mother-in-law!

 For some reason Graham got lots of beer.

 We ate Christmas dinner.  I think Toby enjoyed his Christmas pudding and custard, don't you?

And we had some friends over for Christmas tea.  Next day, it was off to see Graham's parents for a few days, and back just in time for my parents to come visit.  Busy but fun!

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