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Monday’s Parenting Pin It Party #82….

It’s that time again – I’m hosting this week’s Parenting Pin it Party and I would love this week to be a super bumper week packed full of some fabulous inspirational parenting posts.  As ever, any of your fantastic parenting posts are more than welcome but seeing as we’re coming up to Christmas, it would be great to see lots of posts filled with Christmas inspiration linked up.

All of the posts linked up last week were amazing but here’s my two favourites:

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Just click on the images to find out more.

If you haven’t joined in with us before, it really couldn’t be easier.  You just need to a add a link to your favourite parenting post to the linky at the end of this post and then add the badge to your post (not required but it’s always a lovely thing to do).

Sometime this week I’ll pay you a nice little visit and have a good read of you post and get it pinned to the Parenting Party Pinterest board along with all of the other entries.  Next week’s host will then choose her favourite two posts to be featured in their post next Monday.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy

The Diary of a Frugal Family

The Parenting Pin it Party is co-hosted each week by myself, Romanian MumKiddy ChartsMum of OneMummy AlarmAll you need is love and cake and The Fairy and the Frog.




Frugal Family Traditions….

frugal family traditions

A couple of years ago, when I was asked if we had any family Christmas traditions, I said no because I didn’t really think the things we did were traditions – they’re just small things we do every year to make Christmas that bit more magical to us as a family.  As I was saying it, I realised that what we’re doing is making new family traditions, traditions that I hope the kids will want to continue as they get older and more importantly, will do with their own children in years to come.

My favourite tradition is probably making a video for each of the kids using Portable North Pole although this site does seem to be getting more and more commercialised over the last few years.  So much so that they now only do one video for free so you can either pay to go premium or do what we do and get the kids to watch their videos separately at different times.  I’ve always made everyone their own video (non-believers too) and over the years, the expressions on the kids faces and the relief they show when they’re on the good list has been priceless.  I can’t recommend this site highly enough although as I said, it is becoming more commercial which has limited the options available unless you pay for the premium package.  I made the free ones this year and although they weren’t as long or as detailed as they have been in the past, they still made the kids happy and that’s what it’s all about.

I also love how much the kids look forward to hanging their stockings on their bedroom doors on the 1st December every year.  Once the stockings are up , they check them religiously every morning to see if the elves have been to visit and leave them a small treat – nothing huge, just something chocolatey usually.  There’s always great excitement when they’ve had a visit and although at least one of them is now a silent non-believer, the excitement is still there.

We love decorating the tree together although I often have a quick rearrange when everyone's in bed!

We love decorating the tree together although I often have a quick rearrange when everyone’s in bed!

Another tradition we have is the Christmas Eve parcels that we make for the kids.  I know lots of people do these now but I’ve always done them for a couple of reasons, the first on being that I always had a present on Christmas Eve when I was younger so I kind of thought that was normal!  The main reason that they’ve evolved into little hampers rather than just a treat is for purely selfish purposes – the kids are hyper all day on Christmas Eve so waking up to a hamper with a couple of treats and a Christmas movie in them helps keep them calm and pass the day that bit quicker.  I’ll be writing a bit more about our Christmas Eve hampers in the next few days.

We make at least one new tree decoration together every year.

We make at least one new tree decoration together every year.

We also have a pyjama fairy who brings new pyjamas on Christmas Eve and even though this is another one of those things that the kids don’t really buy into now, they pretend to and would be gutted if we didn’t get a visit!

Oh, and a relatively new tradition we have is Jingle, our budget version of elf on a shelf.  I get that these elves are like Marmite and you either love them or hate them so feel free to skip past this bit! J  Our elf isn’t particularly naughty but he does have his moments and it’s not even me who ‘makes’ him do things so he either really is magical or the kids are fully aware that he’s not an actual elf and are enjoying messing with me!

There are lots of other things that we do every year together but these are my favourites – what’s your favourite family tradition?

Don’t fall into the Christmas trap….

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Christmas is not about having tins of Quality Street and Roses stacked high in your cupboard.

Christmas is not about filling your cabinet with alcohol.

Christmas is not about emptying the supermarkets of fruit and veg.

Christmas is not about eating until you feel sick on Christmas Day and then going back for pudding half an hour later.

Christmas is not about who’s tree looks the nicest.

Christmas is not about buying the most expensive toys and gifts.

Christmas is not about sitting in front of the TV all day watching repeats of shows you’ve seen more times than you can count.

Christmas is not about spending more than you can afford.

Christmas is not about getting into debt that you’ll still be paying off well into the New Year.

Christmas is not about having the biggest pile of presents to Instagram.

Christmas is about spending time with your family and enjoying each other’s company.

Christmas is about counting our blessing and realising how lucky we are – even if we don’t get that designer handbag that we asked Santa for.

Christmas is about remembering why we celebrate Christmas.

 ** Whilst I understand absolutely what Christmas is not about, I *may* not always be as good as I’d like to be.  In fact, I’m currently sat here nursing a poorly toe from kicking the box of Roses that fell out of the cupboard when I added a box of Quality Street to my Christmas stash and I quite possibly just threatened to withhold Christmas presents if I don’t get the handbag I’ve asked for. **

Reindeer Dust….

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No matter how old you are, if you want to wake up to presents on Christmas morning you really should be sprinkling some reindeer dust on your path on Christmas Eve to help the reindeers find their way to your house! ;-)

Reindeer dust has always been on of our favourite Christmas Eve traditions and I know I’ve told you about it many, many times so I’m not going to bore you with how you make it today, although you can find out here how we make it if you’re interested.

What I wanted to tell you today is that I’ve set up a brand spanking new Pinterest board with ideas on how to make your reindeer dust.  I had no idea that there were so many variations and that people could make it look so pretty!  Our version is definitely the simple budget version of reindeer dust looking at everyone else’s versions but it does the job as we always get our visit from Santa!

There’s lots of ways to make it, lots of free printables and even some Grinch dust on there if you’re interested!

Follow Cass bailey’s board Make your own reindeer dust on Pinterest.

Don’t forget that it’s really important that you don’t use real glitter as it can injure wildlife if they try to eat it. I use cake sprinkles in mine instead as they have some great glittery colours.