I can’t recall when I stopped believing but I do remember Christmas after that was never quite the same until I became a mummy and the magic returned.
Like most parents I live vicariously through Little Miss when it comes to having childhood fun, I have an excuse to go to the cinema and watch kid’s movies and I get to enjoy the wonder of Christmas all over again.
In Japan Christmas isn’t a national holiday and isn’t celebrated in the same way as in the UK, however, during my 14 years living there it became more of an event. Yes, it was extremely commercialised but it made it possible to get into the festive spirit.
On our return to the UK it has been lovely to do more traditional things with Little Miss, Christmas tree light switch ons in the market square with carol singing and mulled wine, festive family trails around beautiful National Trust gardens and a visit to Lapland UK.
The grand plan is to go to the real Lapland within the next couple of years but until then the UK version is great. Armed with our magical dust delivered by Pauline, our Elf (yes, we brought an elf on the shelf into our home and at times I regret that decision!), Little Miss and I drove to Lapland UK as requested by Father Christmas for her to help him in his workshop last week.
We sprinkled the magic dust on our boots as we entered the Enchanted Forest in preparation for our fairytale excursion, any excuse on my part for some extra glitter in our lives, and after checking in for our 11am departure Little Miss was issued her Elf Passport and mummy bought some jingles, of course all major debit and credit cards are also accepted in Lapland UK.
As we set off on our journey the little people are mesmerised by the storytelling characters, they explain how Father Christmas enlisted the help of the woodland elves to ensure children receive the gifts they requested.
Once in the toy workshop the real fun begins as Whittle asks the children for their help to make some soft toys. After a cheesy song and some big folk (parent/carer) participation Little Miss happily gets to to work in order to have her passport stamped.
The next stop was a visit to Mother Christmas where the small folk enjoy a story and some more singing of course, before they decorate some gingerbread to take home.
In true work life balance after the work has been done it was time for some play in the village, our first stop is always the ice rink.
The Lapland UK locals are great fun and always happy to chat with the small folk, which Little Miss enjoys, a lot more than the freaky oversized Disney characters at Disneyland.
Of course a trip to Lapland would not be complete without meeting the big man in red, so after some food and Jingle (and mummy’s card) spending we follow our elf through a snow covered tree lined path to meet Father Christmas and see if Little Miss is on his good list.
I can’t wait to do the trip to true Lapland that I never had the opportunity to do as a child, but in the meantime the chance to watch the magic of Little Miss being invited to be one of Santa’s/FC’s little helpers is wonderful and a day to remember.
I will now take this opportunity to wish you a wonderful Christmas as I sign off for the festivities and enjoy a gin bauble!
Merry Christmas and “kanpai”!