What’s the Story: Christmas away from home

This time last year we were preparing for our first Christmas away from home.

I wrote a post a couple of days after Christmas about the things I had been worried that we would miss, and whether we had or not.

Last year I worried that we would miss:
Our decorations, lights, toys etc.
Christmas Eve drinks with friends
The school Nativity play
Christmas TV
Marks and Spencer’s food (!)
Mince pies & Christmas cake

In the end, we didn’t miss any of these things; except my mother being with us (and, maybe the M&S food hall…!).

Our tree was lovely, the wee girl was fascinated by it and would sit under it just looking at the lights. This photo is our favourite from last Christmas :)

We didn’t switch the TV on all day (although, I’m still waiting to see last years Dr Who Christmas special…!). We may have missed mince pies a little, but we had lots of other lovely food instead, and a fabulous meal with our neighbour and her family. We had fizz, and chocolate!

New traditions merged with old.

The kids had a wonderful day and that, after all, is what Christmas is all about.

So, this year, my list is quite different, I worry that we will miss:
My mum spending Christmas with us

This is a tricky one, it’s a tough time of year to travel, and the weather can be pretty cold here (as evidenced by the snow we had last week!), so I completely understand the reluctance to travel. We have FaceTime!

This year I am more prepared food wise, we are having Christmas dinner at home rather than at my neighbours, and I am all ready to make us our traditional meal. The presents are bought, there will be a mammoth wrapping session tonight (and tomorrow night!). There will be fizz, there will be chocolate! I may even make mince pies, although they may be for New Year at this rate!

Last week, hubby told me that he was picking up ‘something that we traditionally have for Christmas’ as a surprise for us. I assumed that he had found somewhere that made Christmas cakes or mince pies. Yay, I thought, I can leave the hunt for veggie suet for another day :)

He had a pick up slot on Saturday evening, and he took the 7yo with him for an adventure! An hour later he sent me a text to let me know they had arrived and were just waiting for pick up. The 7yo was having a ball, he loves getting to go out with Daddy on his own.

They finally got home at about 10pm, by which point I was thinking that it had better be a pretty amazing cake! Various texts had complained about traffic and queues. The 7yo was high as kite after his adventure, and it was way past his bed time!

Then, there was a knock at the front door.

It was my mother.

My husband had arranged for her to fly over, and she’s here for two weeks.

So, that really is our Christmas sorted :)

I hope that you all have a wonderful, and special Christmas. I know that I will.

My husband is never going to let me live this one down, I had absolutely no idea! It hadn’t even occurred to me when going through my mental list of possible surprises. So, I’m linking my amazing Christmas surprise up with the lovely Charly and What’s the Story?

30 thoughts on “What’s the Story: Christmas away from home”

  1. thereadingresidence

    Just wow, wow and wow! I’m actually crying happy tears for you! What a wonderful surprise – I hope you all have a fabulous Christmas together x

  2. Oh wow Sara that’s amazing, what a huge surprise! You must have squealed when you saw her – at least jumped up and down with joy. This is such a lovely post too even without the surprise – I love that photo, no wonder it’s one of your favourites. I have a wonderful Christmas and thank you so much for sharing this fabulous post with #whatsthestory

  3. Oh wow that is just lovely! How amazing is your husband for organising that and keeping quiet about it! Next year we’re hoping to be in Australia – a long way away from our families in the UK. We’re trying to make this Christmas as special as possible. I can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like but I love that you’re merging old traditions with new – it gives me hope that we can still enjoy the holidays even if we are missing our families. Have a great Christmas! xx

    1. I can’t believe he managed to keep it a secret :) It’s tough being away from home, but you do make new traditions – you have to for the kids, and by doing that you create a new family Christmas. Missing family is difficult though, I just remind myself that we made the move for good reasons xx Happy Christmas to you too x

  4. How absolutely wonderful for you! And probably the best gift! My Mum arrived this past weekend too – but not a surprise. Have a lovely Christmas!

  5. Pingback: Christmas away from home

  6. Oh that is so sweet!

    I actually read this one as I lived in the US for a year when I was 16/17 (Michigan) & Christmas has always been one of the things I have maintained Americans don’t do quite right, so was interested in your take on it! I LOVE Christmas and I think it was just that I found Thanksgiving seemed to be a bigger deal in American, at least where I was, so Christmas felt a bit flat. & ham. I can’t cope with ham for Christmas dinner! That said, Christmas cookies are much better than Christmas cake, & a white Christmas is guaranteed in Michigan.

    I’ve never been to Boston, but it has always been somewhere I thought would be nice to go.

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