The festive season is upon us once again. How is it where you are? Goodwill to all (wo)men or mistletoe and WHINE! Well, fear not. Either way I have some bits and bobs to share that will hopefully make it all feel merry and bright.
First up is my now annual appeal to support a women’s refuge in Brighton. A few years ago, my friend Laura got in touch to say the women’s refuge she works at had pulled together a Wishlist on Amazon of things they needed and would I mind sharing it? I said yes immediately and WOW. The response was incredible from you all. Hundreds of people buying all kinds of things off the list instantly and all of a sudden parcels were arriving at the door of the refuge. Laura kept sending me photos of all the boxes! It was MAGIC.
So each year we now do this as a part of an annual tradition. The reason it is so brilliant is because the refuge is a safe house for women and families fleeing from domestic violence or dangerous situations. Therefore it is not possible for the address of this safe house to ever be shared. So donations aren’t usually delivered easily. However through the Wishlist the refuge are able to get deliveries direct to their door without sharing their address with anyone at all, even the kind donator of the gift. You just select the name of the charity as the delivery address and Amazon does the rest.
On top of this benefit, they also can list exactly what they need. Not just for Christmas but for the whole of next year. Items required to welcome new families, for birthdays or celebrations in the year when people otherwise have nothing, items required to help people set up a new home or to provide them with comfort and support at a time when they need it the most. Every single thing from the £3 crayons to the £150 vacuum cleaner are needed and very GRATEFULLY received.
So if you wish to buy them something to make their year a little easier then here is the link for the list. It’ll be open throughout December should you wish to buy them something. No matter how big or small they are so very THANKFUL, as am I.
However there are some other brilliant initiatives going on throughout December to help those who require extra support at this time of year. UK Reads are buying books for children who wouldn’t otherwise have access to them. Visit their website here to donate https://ukreads.org/ - A tenner will buy 3 books for a child - what a quick and easy win for a dreary December afternoon!
Also, we were lucky enough to visit Selfridges on Oxford Street in London during closing hours last weekend. The kids got to meet a wonderful Father Christmas (who will be walking the store throughout December) and have a story with him. I also got to see The Toy Project pop up which is a charity based in North London that recycles unwanted new and used toys. They have a little booth in the toy department in Selfridges where you can donate toys your children no longer play with, or even buy beautiful second hand toys for your children at a very good price! My two were delighted to pick something out and I will be popping in this week with some of their old toys to donate too.
More info can be found here:
Selfridges are also running events throughout December. They are all ticketed but some are free. Link here:
If you are here looking for some festive fun I have a few old blog posts that might be helpful. One I wrote for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust a few years ago, full of games for children who are doing their daily physio if they have CF but also just fun for EVERYONE! I also have some games to play with the Christmas rubbish that accumulates this time of year. A way to turn all that trash into fun.
And finally I know advent has already started but if you are looking for ideas for an elf or a way to bring some letter learning and reading into advent in an easy way then go and check out this old blog post for some ideas…! The Five Minute Advent - it’s not too late to join in!
My two are really loving it. This year our elf is bringing them a word a day and it is going to spell out some cracker jokes.
See what they were here: https://www.instagram.com/reel/CW6bBkpL9k6/?utm_medium=copy_link
So that’s all, oh not forgetting one last link, if you’re in need of gift ideas my shop is always there with my list of recommendations for investment toys we have had and loved over the years. From age one to where we are at now (five and seven). I pop anything we love on there in case you’re in need of ideas, here is the link to my affiliate SHOP
As for me, I’ve just send my third book off to print - hurrah! It’s called ON THE GO and is going to be filled with ideas for when you’re out and about with the kids. I cannot wait fro you all to see it. If you wish to pre-order it the link is here. I’ve heard a pre-ordered book makes a WONDERFUL Christmas gift for all the parents in your lives! HA!!
I’m logging out of everything Five Minute Mum now for a few weeks so I can truly soak up the festive feels and enjoy my two at the PERFECT age for Christmas magic. I am wishing you all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS. Thank you so much for your ongoing love and support this year. Peace, love, joy and a chocolate oranges all round!