Goodbye 2011!

I am so ready for 2012....
I feel like standing outside my home with a huge sign reading "2012....This Way Please - and Hurry Up!"
I cannot wait to sit down tomorrow and make those new year plans.

We've a lovely Christmas- albeit a germ-sprinkled one- we've eaten, played, watched films, danced, laughed...and then eaten some more. 
We've hibernated and really really enjoyed our party of four.

My 6 year son has talked non-stop about Father Christmas, having tried to stay awake for him, he's 100% certain that he heard bells and he continued to wonder why reindeer are so messy every single year, leaving carrots and water awash in the special bowl we leave under the Christmas tree every year.

He's disappointed that we had no snow in London....he has concluded that Father Christmas is very busy and can't always get around to arranging everything.
The magic of Christmas is truly alive and well in our home, long may it continue. 

Anyone who reads my blog knows that I love to read and this holiday has provided some quiet time for me to do that....
I've read six totally different books, which for me is just bliss.

Holidays are also the perfect time to declutter, re-organise and generally cleanse.
Never happier than when I'm sorting out a drawer or a cupboard, I've emptied, tidied and cleared....
donated to the local shelter and charity shop and given items away on Freecycle.
I'm also considering a sideline in batteries, phone cords and coloured pencils ;)

I feel cleansed, re-energised and totally ready for a new year to begin!!

Tonight we are heading off to watch the London New Year fireworks, wrapped up extremely warm and armed with blankets and hot chocolate.

Happy New Year everyone!!

Merry Christmas

photo by Bill Carter

Stockings are hung, gifts are wrapped, the fridge is groaning, mince pies and Christmas pudding are ready, Christmas movies watched and books read.

The house smells beautiful, candles are lit everywhere and my children are wrapping presents in the living room.

After a trip to Bath on Monday for some Christmas shopping and a wonderful lunch, we've virtually hibernated this week, just enjoying the holidays, watching Christmas television, baking and loving the fact that we were avoiding the scrum in the shops.

It's been absolutely lovely....
although somehow the germs got in and I have a terrible cough/cold, a raging headache and a nose as red as Rudolph's....blech :(
Still, 48 hours to go, I'll be fine....I hope!  

I wish you a very Merry Christmas wherever you are....
full of love, peace and happiness....and just a little magic.  


We Did It.

Exactly 14 days ago, I wrote about Project Generator
where my goal was to raise USD$800/£511

I had the crazy idea of raising the total before Christmas, 
without really realising that Christmas was only 2 weeks away!

Some kind people blogged and tweeted about it, spreading the word....
donations came from all round the world....
many of them from people I don't know at all.
the kindness of strangers....

We have raised EIGHT HUNDRED DOLLARS....

the Home needs a generator to function on the 3-4 days a week when the electricity simply doesn't function.

They will now have that generator.

Fabulous. Fantastic. Brilliant. Excellent.

I'm so happy!!!

A huge massive enormous thank you to everyone who donated - 
be proud for making a difference and for caring.

....we did it....

Wanted : 13 Kind Hearts....

Regular readers will know about Project Generator 

This is my special project where I am aiming to raise USD$800/£511 for an electricity generator at Barb's Home of Angels in Uganda.

I had the crazy idea of doing this by Christmas when I started the project just ten days ago....
but with the help of blog-reader donations and blog advertising revenue
an amazing $787 has been raised....

just $13 to go!!!

Please help....please please please donate, 
I so want to reach the total by Christmas.

Just one dollar-one pound-one euro is all is takes.
Every single penny goes directly to the Home.

I am also offering advertising on my blog and donating the revenue to my project - 
let me know if you want details or know anyone who might be interested.

Feel free to blog or tweet about this and spread the word - 
thank you to those lovely people who have already done so. 

Please send payments via Paypal - 
payable to me : sla212 at hotmail dot com

The fantastically lovely and amazing Edwin - who originally inspired Barb to start the Home of Angels - and Alan who will be the youngest resident of the Home which it opens. 

Please help.....thank you so much.

Happy Friday....

School is finished and now we are ready for some Christmas loveliness!

Christmas movies galore, days at home, visits to friends and baking some treats.

Snow and sleet in London this morning and very cold tonight.

Cottage pie, hot chocolate and organic wines for dinner tonight, yum!

The winner of the Vogue subscription giveaway is Pink and Pain Mom.
Please contact me with your details!

Happy Weekend!

Half Price Sale with Kurt Geiger


The White Company

The Tree Is Up!

(not my actual tree)

Finally, our Christmas tree is up and all the decorations are complete....
it looks beautiful.

It's the one part of Christmas that I like to be just so, everything else I am quite relaxed about....

my daughter & my husband choose the tree
always a real tree with lots of white lights (never coloured!) 
the decorations are assorted, colourful and sentimental....
the children in their new Christmas pyjamas
hot chocolate and mince pies
watching "Elf" and/or listening to Christmas music
one child hangs up the Christmas stockings & switches the tree lights on for the first time
the other one places the star on the tree as the final decoration

My final task is to sit and plan Christmas menus and food shopping....
I need some Christmas party food ideas ....
some desserts for parties next week....

It's beginning to look an awful lot like Christmas!!!

To enter the Vogue subscription giveaway, enter here 
(an annual subscription to your own country's Vogue magazine)

To donate to Project Generator,  please see here 
a dollar, a pound or a euro
Payments via Paypal to sla212 at hotmail dot com

77% of the total raised so far....AMAZING!
Thank you SO much!!

Rockefeller Center Christmas tree

I saw "New Year's Eve" last night at the cinema....
it made me laugh and cry....
....what's not to love about NYC, New Year's Eve and a little romance : )

Monday Sunshine + Vogue Subscription Giveaway....

....bearing in mind that my motto this year is "focus, breathe and enjoy" during the Christmas season, 
several hours spent shopping with the crowds this morning was a challenge to say the least!

Most of my shopping is done thankfully....
because I won't be in a hurry to repeat this morning :)
There is not much Christmas spirit to be found in queuing at a checkout!

And so....

1 beautifully sunny day in London
5 more days of school
2 trips to the pantomime
30 mince pies to bake for the class party
1 carol concert to attend tonight
1 secret santa gift bought, 1 to buy
1 baby christmas tree to buy for my Dad
2 christmas lunches with friends
10+ gifts to wrap tonight (before little eyes can see....)
1 long christmas food list to write
2 pair of christmas pyjamas bought

Please donate to my Project Generator appeal....
just one pound-dollar-euro helps so much, more than you can even imagine....

so far I have raised 63% of my goal amount of USD$800/£511 which is incredible!!
a huge thank you to everyone who has donated so far.....

My friend Kim is having a lovely giveaway over here  -
donate to Project Generator and you get a extra entry :)

Number 3 in my Christmas giveaway is a year's subscription to the gorgeousness that is 
Vogue magazine -
I did this last year - one gift per month all year round - what could be better?!

To enter just be a follower, leave me a comment & I will announce the winner this Friday.
If you want to donate to Project Generator (or have done so already), you get an extra entry!
Tweet the giveaway for yet another entry!
(You can enter wherever you are in the world for this giveaway) 

To donate, please make a payment via Paypal to my paypal address which is
sla212 at hotmail dot com.

Just one dollar or one pound -  please help.
Every single donation goes directly to the Home in Uganda. 

Thank you!!

I am guest-posting about my Christmas thoughts over here - come and see me!

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