Monthly Archives: December 2013

Countdown in the run-app to Christmas…

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My son is obsessed with countdowns and wishing his life away, it seems; so the Countdown to Christmas clock app has been running since just after Easter. From one choco-blowout fest (Easter Eggs!) to another, he delights in crossing off the days. Advent calendars were made for this boy.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

To be a bit different this year, we made a fortune cookie advent calendar, and had great fun making up Christmas-themed fortunes; 24 little pearls of wisdom, including:
A soggy cracker makes no bang.
Tinsel at any other time of year is just tat.
A puppy is not just for Christmas. With any luck, there should be some left over for Boxing Day.

We’ll be using our Christmas fortunes again to make real fortune cookies to hand out to Christnas visitors. Here is a fortune cookie recipe from the lovely Hairy Bikers on the BBC website.

Should keep the kids busy in the holidays. And with over 400 advent calendar competitions online this year, a comper could go a bit crazy until Christmas Eve.

Ah, Christmas Eve. So much more exciting than the day itself. I love watching the glittering fairy lights light up the presents under the tree, the quiet after the storm. The kids go to bed early for a change, after putting out their provisions for Santa.

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Ok, so Santa gets a mince pie and a huge glug of whisky, Rudolph gets his carrot, but what about the rest of the reindeer? We’ve made Magic Reindeer Food (a combination of bird seed and edible glitter, aka fairy dust) which we spread on the lawn last thing on Christmas Eve.

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The fairy dust must be pretty amazing stuff, because it makes the reindeer fly high, apparently. And the reindeer on the front of the pack have antlers made out of twigs. The twigs were lovingly collected all year round, with a bumper harvest of fallen branches in the last couple of weeks, thanks to the horrendous storms we’ve been having (hey, if life gives you lemons, make reindeer antlers…?)

My favourite countdown to Christmas app is the NORAD Santa tracking device, which shows you where in the world Santa is delivering his presents, at any given point in time on Christmas Eve. NORAD is short for North American Aerospace Defence Command, which tracks potential enemy missiles when it’s not doing the more important job of looking out for Santa.

The NORAD  programme has been going since the fifties; here’s a link to the Youtube trailer for this year:

Loads more info and games on the official website http://www.noradsanta.org

It’s a wonderful lesson in time zones and world geography, and will make a believer of even the most hardened cynic. It’s so exciting to watch the countdown to Christmas with Santa, flying around the world, dropping off his presents with lightning speed.

Thanks NORAD, nice to see American tax dollars being put to good use. No, really.

http://www.noradsanta.org

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