Merry Christmas from us in Oz

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year from us in Oz! I have so much respect for anyone who genuinely writes their own blogs (and doesn’t outsource) because I can’t seem to catch a break – how does anyone do it??? In between the endless end of term parties and random festivities that swallowed up the whole of December, we somehow managed to squeeze in a bit of shopping for the kids then -BOOM – Christmas Day had arrived!

And it felt completely different to our first Christmas in Australia for me. I think last year seeing festive trees lining the streets and hearing songs about snow in the baking heat was all new and exciting and we embraced the change whole heartedly. This year, a lot of the traditions that we have maintained like giving the kids advent calendars, decorating the house on the first of the month and the Elf of the Shelf, all felt a bit forced and surreal if I’m honest.

I missed the momentum that the change in weather in England used to bring, the sparkly lights outside peoples houses and the TV ramping up it’s programming in the build up to the big day. As people discussed their arrangements with family over the holidays, it made me miss mine even more as I longed to share the kids excitement about Santa coming to town and to watch them perform in their Christmas concerts with us. No matter how much their little faces singing their hearts out on stage made me burst with pride, I still felt pretty sad inside because we weren’t sharing these special times with the people who would have applauded the loudest and celebrated the hardest.

Yes, it’s fair to say the past month has been pretty challenging for me although if you ask Ste and the kids I’m sure they’d tell you they’ve been having an amazing time – thankfully – and when I look at the pictures, it’s easy to see why.

Kian and Kaira took part in their first performance through their playgroup and we weren’t sure if they would get on the stage at all, never mind a) sing and b) behave but they did great, our beautiful little twinkling Christmas stars! We were very proud and they were over the moon to get a surprise visit from the big man himself!

Hanging the stockings on Christmas Eve and making little trees with pom poms and new ornaments was so special. We listened to music, ran around in the sunshine in the garden and felt completely relaxed, until bedtime! If you thought getting the kids to bed on Christmas Eve is hard when it’s dark- you should try it in the middle of Summer when it’s broad daylight until 9pm! They did go to sleep…eventually!

Maybe this was just before Ariana swung Kaira out of the way to get to her sack of toys? Also, does anyone else with kids have a clean TV screen? Please let me know how!

All the toys, and all the mess! If I heard “open it” once on Christmas Day, I must have heard in a thousand times!

“He really likes me doesn’t he mummy?!” Kian was relieved to find out he was on the Nice List after a year of making mischief!

Our parents watched the kids unwrap their toys on video messages during Christmas morning. I don’t think I’ll ever get used to it!

We all went down to the beach in the afternoon and the kids splashed around in the sea while I waited for the rest of my family to wake up in England so I could share the celebrations with them.

I feel so lucky that we live in such a beautiful part of the world and to have made some amazing friends here in Melbourne but despite all the sunshine it’s fair to say that our second Christmas overseas has felt more like a bit of a challenge. I’ve realised that missing friends and family back home is really highlighted during the holidays, I’m just so grateful for our beautiful kids and the fun ages they’re at to make the festivities seem magical!

Merry Christmas to you, thank you so much for stopping by our blog and keeping in touch the way so many of you do through our social media pages and here. Wishing you a healthy and happy 2018! (wow, is that right?!!)

Love from Leyla

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