6 articles Tag festive

The Most Interesting Plans for Christmas in London

Ready to spend the best holiday of your life this Christmas in London? Then take a look at the places, plans and venues suggested below! You’ll have a blast regardless who you travel with, be it friends, partner or family.

Winterville at Victoria Park

Winterville at Victoria Park is another London Christmas fair offering fun and activities for the whole family, such as an ice rink, children’s fairground rides, horse or carriage rides, a Ferris wheel, a Christmas market and shows, as well as food stalls.

Kew Gardens Light Show

The Royal Botanic Gardens of London Kew Gardens celebrates Christmas every year with a light show that you cannot miss if you travel to London with children at Christmas. It is a magical tour through the botanical garden illuminated with many spectacular Christmas lights from late November to early January. It is an event that always sells out quickly, so you have to buy tickets in advance on their website.

See Christmas lights in London

To see the most spectacular Christmas lights in London you will have to go to Oxford Street, Regent Street and Covent Garden Square. The Winterfest festival in Wembley Park is another highly recommended destination in London to see Christmas lights with children. Artists from around the world have created pieces of art that combine Christmas lights with sounds and a multi-sensory experience. You will find the tallest LED Christmas tree in London and impressive walkways with interactive sounds.

Another fun way to see the Christmas lights in London is by riding the roofless bus that runs through the most iconic streets and places of London decorated with lights: Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, The London Eye, Big Ben and Regent Street, among others. The bus departs from Golden Tours Visitor Center at Fountain Square and Buckingham Palace Road.

Christmas at London Zoo

ZSL London Zoo also transforms at Christmas to offer Christmas at London Zoo, a magical experience for its visitors. When it gets dark, the park is illuminated with a million Christmas lights that create a magical and very festive atmosphere. The little ones will love it walk inside the illuminated tunnels. There is also Santa Claus and there are activities for children, such as Christmas movies and children’s crafts.

Christmas Crazy Golf at Plonk Golf

An alternative to indoor fun plans to try with your family and children is the crazy golf games at Plonk Golf! Crazy Golf in Camden is a great for family bonding during Christmas thanks to the venues fun and enjoyable crazy golf courses that are there to both entertain and challenge.

Ice skating in London

There are several ice rinks in London decorated with Christmas lights to skate with children in the open air, which are worth a visit at Christmas to experience a magical and very Christmas atmosphere with the family. The Eyeskate ice skating rink on The London Eye is one of the most impressive, since while you skate you have the London London Eye’s giant Ferris wheel as a backdrop.

Other ice rinks to skate in London with children at Christmas are Somerset House Ice Rink, The Tower of London Ice Rink, Canary Wharf Ice Rink, Broadgate Ice Rink, Natural History Museum Ice Rink, Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink and the famous ice rink ice in Winter Wonderland.

5 Ways to Promote Your Small Business This Christmas

Ways to Promote Your Small Business This Chirstmas
Photo by Tim Douglas from Pexels

Some of you may know that aside from blogging and copywriting, I occasionaly do some marketing work too, and back in July I shared some ways that you can market your small business. With over 400,000 new companies launching during lockdown, it seemed like a good time to share some tips and now, with Christmas approaching (SORRY for mentioning the ‘C’ word in October!) I thought I’d give you some more targeted tips for helping your business to have a prosperous Christmas:

Point of Sale

Something that I’d advise many small businesses to invest in is some bespoke Christmas displays. This is especially important if you have a physical shopfront, and although you may be worried about the cost, it’s something that you’ll be able to use year after year. Having a professional display will really elevate your Christmas promotions and will look So much more inviting that just have strands of tinsel strewn about!

Send a Card

If you’re the type of business that holds address information for your clients, there’s nothing quite like a Christmas card to spread some festive cheer (and tell them about your latest offers!). There are many approaches, from online services which will send them automatically to actually handwriting cards, which is time-consuming but gives a truly personal effect. You could even just send an e-card via email, if that’s easier.

Christmas Themed Packaging

We all know how important custom packaging is for your brand. Packaging is the only thing that reaches 100% of your customers and is the first step in creating a memorable unboxing experienceUnique Christmas packaging for your products over Christmas adds a touch of luxury and class and, if coupled with a Christmas edition product, can really help create a sense of ‘exclusivity’ around your product.

Support a Local Cause

By reaching out to those less fortunate than you, you can also create awareness of your own brand at the same time. There are loads of different ways you can support charities, and it should be something you consider doing year-round, rather than just at Christmas. You could inform customers that all proceeds made from a certain range of products goes to charity, or even host a charity event like a coffee morning or brunch and encourage customers to donate with you. Just make sure you send invites beforehand!

Reward Your Loyal Followers

Depending on your audience, you may find that your followers on social media are your most engaged customers and your best brand ambassadors. Why not thank them by having offers exclusive to social media platforms? Although digital coupons and coupon codes work best with online stores, brick-and-mortar businesses can still offer print-at-home coupons that are promoted exclusively on social media. An alternative for online businesses is to create a landing page with unique offers, and again only promote this on social media.

The Best Christmas Jumpers for the Whole Family

With Christmas just three weeks away, our thoughts have been turning to all things festive. This time last year, I was MASSIVELY pregnant with Burrito Baby and fashion was the last thing on my mind. This year, however, I’ve decided that a Christmas jumper is high on my list of wants, and Sausage has decided that she agrees, so we’ve been spending a lot of time looking around the internet for festive knitwear and we though we’d share our favourites with you!

Do let me know what you think of our choices or if you’ll be getting wrapped in some seasonal sweaters yourself.

Men's Christmas Jumpers

 

Men’s Christmas Jumpers by jayne-crammond featuring a christmas sweater

Women's Christmas Jumpers

 

Women’s Christmas Jumpers by jayne-crammond featuring a boxy sweater

Boxy sweater
next.co.uk

Jumper top
marksandspencer.com

Short sleeve tee
newlook.com

Red sweater
newlook.com

Jumper top
newlook.com

Sweater
marksandspencer.com

Christmas Sweater
next.co.uk

Kids and Babies Christmas Jumpers

 

Kids and Babies Christmas Jumpers by jayne-crammond featuring a jumper top

New Years Eve: What Should I Do?

Christmas is almost upon us and we’re all turning our thoughts to how we’re going to make the festive season special this year. We’re lucky enough that we have a lot of family around us, so the main days of Christmas are filled with family, fun and food, but by the time New Year comes around, we’re often feeling a little flat and unsure of what to do with ourselves. I discovered recently that Butlins offers New Years breaks, which could be a great way to extend the festivities and keep everyone happy.

They’ve thought of everything too, even offering a Christmas Panto (Oooh, yes they are!) as well as Ice Rinks, Christmas arts and crafts, plus a Winter Wonderland and Skyline Snowstorm, which will make your stay really special. Here’s a table which shows what an average weekend at Butlins could be like for your family over the Christmas period:

46-130432_ChristmasFantasy

I must say, after the madness of Christmas and Boxing Day, the thought of getting away and letting someone else do all of the cooking and bed-making is seriously appealing. The really impressive thing is that prices start at just £39 per person, depending on which site you visit, and that includes all of the activities above with a red ‘thumbs up’ symbol next to them.

Sausage has only ever done ‘fake’ ice-skating; there’s a soft play centre near us with a kind of acrylic ice rink which is okay, but it doesn’t really give you that authentic ice skating experience, so I reckon she’d absolutely love to visit Butlins for their rinks, as well as all of the other activities on offer. I must admit, the Christmas Arts and Crafts sound like something that I’d  like to do, let alone Sausage!

For more information about Festive breaks at Butlins, please click on the link above.

Butlin's-logo-1 (2)

A Warner Bros. Christmas!

Last week, we were lucky enough to be sent a special Christmas stocking by Warner Bros. containing some lovely candy canes for our tree, our fave kind of chocolate (Lindt, in case you’re wondering!) and most importantly of all, a selection of Blurays to keep us entertained over the Festive period. It couldn’t have turned up at a better time as Sausage was at the height of her poorlyness, and a day in bed watching films was in order!

Perfect for this was  Polar Express

The blurb says “It’s Christmas Eve, and you’re about to roller-coaster up and down mountains, slip-slide over ice fields, tetter across mile-high bridges and be served hot chocolate by singing waiter more astonishing than any you can ever imagine. You’re on The Polar Express! Tom Hanks stars in and Robert Zemeckis directs this instant holiday classive filmed in dazzling performance-capture animation that makes every home magical.”

I’d never seen this before but it really was magical. Sausage was absolutely enthralled, we both were, and it really was a perfect Christmas film, with just the right amount of drama, action, mystery and happy ending. If you’ve not seen it before, I highly recommend it and it’s one to watch with the WHOLE family, I can imagine grandparents, parents and kids alike all enjoying Polar Express. Also, if you have a Bluray player or PS3, I can highly recommend opting for the Bluray version rather than the DVD, although the version we were sent contained the 3D Bluray, regular Bluray, as well as the DVD AND a digital copy, which pretty much future and past proofs you for a timespan of about 20 years in each direction!

The next film in the stocking was The Dark Knight Rises .

I only saw this film recently as I didn’t get a chance to see it at the cinema, but I’m a big fan of the Batman films and absolutely LOVE what Nolan has done with them. The Dark Knight Rises did not disappoint. In fact, and this is not something I thought I’d say about a Batman film, I cried for about the last half an our of the film. It is AMAZING.

Honestly, I was blown away by the entire film and think it was the perfect ending to the three movies that Nolan was signed up to make.  The Bluray copy was brilliant and really added to the viewing experience, because although this film wasn’t as visually dark as the first or second one, it was very striking and really benefited from the higher definition. I’m going to shut up about this film now because I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen it, but if that’s you, I demand that you watch it!

The final film we were sent was ‘New Year’s Eve‘ and I have to confess, I haven’t actually watched this yet. That’s because it’s well and truly a ‘chick flick’ so I’m saving it for in case Husband has a night out at any point and I can have my own girlie night in. I’m guessing this film would be well accompanied by chocolate and maybe a Crabbies Alcoholic Ginger Beer (my fave!) or two, as it’s described as an American Love Actually. I’m really looking forward to giving this a watch – while I like to think I have good taste in films, I do love a good girlie film now and again. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of heart-warming girl-power, I say!

Not to do the film a disservice though, I feel I should point out that it has some incredible actors in it, such as the beloved Sarah Jessica Parker, my current idol Sofia Vergara and *drum roll please* Robert DeNiro, who takes my breath away!

Thanks to Warner Bros. for sending us these Blurays and our sweet treats! 

(This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links, which means if you click through and buy these films, I earn a small percentage of the sale, which doesn’t affect the price you buy it for)

Stuck in my ways?

If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know that Husband has some sleep issues which mean that often, he is awake while the rest of the household is asleep. We’re both avid users of StumbleUpon, which means that I often wake up with a dozen emails from him, little things that he’s read that he thinks I’ll find interesting. And I love it, it’s one of my favourite things as I know that he’s been thinking of me, plus it gives us lots to talk about and debate upon. He’ll send me things which are so random, so totally me that it gives me a warm feeling to think that he really gets me, you know?

Until yesterday.

I woke up to a bunch of Stumbles, one of which was a suggestion for the Christmas tree we should buy this year. He’d sent me a link to a page from the B&Q website, where they were selling a *urgh* fibre-optic tree. I mean, really? Who wants a Christmas tree with no fairy lights, and light literally shooting out of the ends of the branches?! And then he explained, very reasonably and rationally that a fibre-optic tree is a far more sensible option as it means we don’t have to have wires tangled around the tree, it’ll save time, we don’t have to have the saga of finding out which dead bulb is causing the whole chain to die, it’ll be easier to store, not to mention the fact that Sausage has a fibre optic lamp, which she is absolutely obsessed with, ergo she’ll probably adore a giant fibre-optic tree!

And you know what? He’s totally right, it’s the best option all round. But why is it that I still feel sad that we won’t have the same awkward, difficult to put together, mess of a tree that we do every year? I think it stems from when I was younger and staying with my grandparents. I think I’ve mentioned my maternal grandparents before, whom I love dearly, but who don’t like each other very much. Well, when I was a kid, I’d remember them arguing, every bloody year, my Nan asking my Grandad when he was going to get the Christmas decorations out of the loft, and my Grandad moaning and saying he’d get round to it. Every year, without fail, this would start in early December and usually go on up to Christmas Eve, when the nagging would get too much and my Grandad would get off of his arse and get the decorations.

They’d let me put the decorations up, assembling their minute and ancient artificial tree (seriously, it’s like 2 ft tall and they’ve had it my whole life) and hanging the baubles, some of which were older than my Mum. And once it was all done, this peace, this sense of calm would finally descend on the whole house, my Nan glad that she’d got her way and my Grandad content that the nagging would let up, for at least a while (I’m not making my Nan out to be a bad guy here, she really does have to poke my Grandad with a stick, just to get him to move). It was like the spirit of Christmas had done its work, and we could start to feel festive.

I think the process of putting the tree together, stringing the lights around it, adorning it with tinsel has become a reminder of that time, and I suppose I go through it, waiting for the feeling at the end. But my Husband has made me realise, I don’t need this to put me in the Christmas spirit. I have an amazing Daughter who, this year, will be looking at the tree with the light shooting out of its branches and her face, and the thought of how happy it will make her, is all the Christmas spirit I could ever wish for.

So here’s to change, a step away from the negative and towards a Merrier Christmas.