Tag Archives: christmas

Christmas Games

***Christmas Giveaway***

Christmas is nearly here … I cannot believe that I am saying that. Christmas is always hard for us but I’m actually looking forward to seeing it through Leo’s eyes this year, he’s getting excited already.

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For the grown ups and older children (age 3 and above) though, I have a competition for you to win a game to play! I actually love this game, we spent a New Year’s Eve playing it and it’s actually really fun.

To enter, take a read of the info below and click here to go back to my Facebook page and tell me one of the names of the positions of the pigs that can score you points!

Pass the Pigs for Xmas!

You’ll be snorting with laughter if you play with these piggy games for Christmas.  The original party animals, Pass the Pigs, use hilarious pigs for dice. Will you roll a sider or start makin’ bacon? Having fun with friends, on the road entertainment, or just chilling out – the game is on for every pig in the parlour!

Fantastic fun for the whole family, Pass the Pigs is so easy to play. Simply throw the 2 piggies up in the air and see how they land. Compare the pigs landing positions with your scorecard and earn points, the first to 100 wins.

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Pass the Pigs comes in a handy travel case, pop into your bag and you are ready for a game anytime, so if you are traveling to see family it’s the perfect entertainment on the go. Pass the Pigs Party are ideal for when you want to play with family and friends at Christmas.

Pass the Pigs  

• Hours of fun are guaranteed with this exciting Pass the Pigs game. Perfect for taking on the road, the Pass the Pigs game comes in a handy travel case, so there’s never a dull moment to be had!

• Pass the Pigs is a game of skill for 2-6 players, it comes with a handy carry case, 2 pencils, 2 pigs and a pocket-sized score card.

• Suitable for ages 3+ and available for £9.99rrp.

Pass the Pigs party

• The version for party animals! Now there are EIGHT pigs in the game to play with. Roll your piggies to try and be first to match the position on your card, get bonus points if you do it on your first go! Be the first to rack up 100 points. £14.99rrp.

o 8 small plastic piggies (four pairs)

o Deck of 30 cards

o Carry case

Instagram: @passthepigsofficial

Facebook: www.facebook.com/passthepigs

Twitter: @PassThePigsGame

Website: www.passthepigsofficial.com

The competition is open to anyone aged 18 and over and lives in the UK.

There are two prizes.

1 x Pass The Pigs Game

1 x Pass The Pigs Party Game

Get your entries in before midnight on 7th December 2017!

Terms & Conditions

1. The first prize is Pass The Pigs Party Game, which will be awarded to the first person randomly selected.

The second prize is Pass The Pigs original game.

2. The prize is non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.

3 Open to UK residents aged 16 and over and excluding relatives of @millieleosmum and Wire PR.

4. Closing date for entries is 11.59pm GMT on 7th December 2017

5. Entries must be received on Facebook or Twitter on the specified posts only and only one entry per person.

6. Winners will be notified by a comment on the Facebook page and a private message to their Facebook Profile and will have 24 hours to contact me before a new winner is chosen.

Wire PR is responsible for prize fulfilment and will liaise with the winner to arrange delivery of prizes within 28 days.

This is a joint promotion between @millieleosmum and Wire PR.

By participating in this competition, entrants confirm they have read, understood and agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.

Christmas is coming …

It’s been a very strange and tough old couple of weeks in the run up to Christmas for us.

We haven’t celebrated Christmas since we lost Millie, which only actually means that Dan and I have only actually  celebrated Christmas together just twice since we got together nearly 6 years ago. When you think about it like that, it seems quite strange.

We spent the first couple of years together with Dan’s family which was lovely at the time but when Millie came along, we really wanted just to have our own little family Christmas at home as our little family – but we never got that. We only got as far as buying Millie some presents – but she never got them as we lost her before we got chance to have a Christmas together. So this year, we are giving Leo these special presents specifically from Millie, they are wrapped in different wrapping paper to everything else for him because they are off his Angel sister.  

(Millie’s presents for Leo -we  ran out of white snowflake so had to use white robin for the last one)

It’s been one hard step after another this week. In my last blog, I talked about how we had managed to put a Christmas tree up, which I’m glad we did because Leo absolutely loves the lights and watches them all the time. 

Many of you have also previously read about how we took Leo to meet Santa and visit the reindeer (read that blog here) so that we had those extra special memories for us and to have photos for Leo to look back on. So you see, as hard as it is, we keep trying … We keep pushing ourselves, for Leo. 

 

We made the decision earlier in the month that we weren’t going to give presents to anyone this year and asked people not to buy them us (they of course could for Leo, if they wanted to and he has been totally spoilt) but Dan and I have been finding it hard enough to deal with buying Leo presents for the past couple of months and trying to bring some Christmas into our home. I’m pretty sure everyone has understood why we have made this decision. To not celebrate for 3 years and then to suddenly have to do it again for Leo has been tough, it’s been really tough but we knew that we needed to do it and more so whilst he is little because the biggest thing for me was that I didn’t want to look back and remember his “first” Christmas wasn’t how it should have been and how Millie’s would have been. He deserves his first treasured Christmas and so do we to be honest.

These memories flashed up on my Facebook this morning, so you can see I actually used to love Christmas …

  
But I’ve hated it ever since we lost Millie but this year it’s a little different because we have Leo and I can’t wait to see how he reacts tomorrow morning. I’m not excited for me, but I’m happy for Leo that he is going to get his 1st Christmas because when he was born I still wasn’t certain that we would be doing it this year. 

A mum I know, who lost her gorgeous boy in 2008 and has since gone on to have another equally gorgeous boy told me that as bittersweet as it is , her younger son is so excited that she is now looking forward to the day – she gives me hope that further down the line, that I’ll start to feel the same – to have real feeling for Christmas again.

We’ve gotten Leo in the Christmas spirit today with his clothing and of course taken obligatory photographs … How could we not?

We’ve not done much at all today, in fact Dan has been painting the hallway whilst I’ve been chopping the veg for tomorrow! 

I’m sure that the next couple of years will change things at Christmas for us even more so as Leo learns what all the excitement is about and gets excited about Santa coming but the choices we have made for this Christmas are just enough to make some lovely memories to look back on. 

So this evening, we’ve got our Santa plate ready except in our house Santa has a Disaronno waiting for him to keep him warm on his travels 😀 and a chocolate biscuit as our Santa fancies a change from a mince pie when he reaches our house. (Neither Dan or I can stand mince pies). We also all have our brand new pyjamas to wear on Christmas Eve …  and all Millie’s thing ready and waiting to take down to her sleeping place in the morning when we wake up. We’ve already headed on down there about an hour ago to put new christmas lights up and light some lovely candles for her on Christmas Eve – this is somethimg special we can always do for her. 😍

 (Millie Moo X) 

I’d just like a couple of thoughts here for everyone who has a lost loved one to remember at Christmas but more so all the parents out there that are missing their precious child/ren on Christmas Day. Unfortunately most of you will know someone who has lost a child, just take two seconds right now to send them a text and let them know that you are thinking of them and remembering their children – I promise they will appreciate it so much ❤️❤️❤️

So, let’s see what Christmas Day brings for us and we would like to wish you all a very  merry Christmas and hope you all have an amazing day xxx

  
 
Love the Thompsons xxx (in our Christmas pyjamas) 

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***Please note the Millie’s Trust shop will be back online after New Year***

Smudged Mascara 

I’ve found it quite hard to blog for the past few weeks because I have things in my head that I want to write, I start to write and then I cry and when I cry it doesn’t stop thus leading to a blurry screen, eyes being sore from lenses being rubbed whilst I cry and then mascara all over my eyes after I’ve forgotten I’ve already done my make up for the day – picture it, go on , seriously, it will make you smile me looking like this. Don’t worry, I know you’re not laughing at me crying, I know you’re laughing at my panda eyes and the cartoon image this brings to your head, it’s fine, honestly have a laugh on me. Even though you are all laughing right now, you know you have totally been there with the smudged mascara for whatever reason, smudged mascara is part of being a woman  I think! 

If you can’t laugh at yourself, like I’m doing now with this, what’s the point in it all? 

It’s coming up to that time,Christmas, I can say it now without thinking it’s ages away because it’s not, it’s less than 2 weeks away. This year has gone so fast.  This time last year, I was very heavily pregnant, although I was pregnant and should have been enjoying it, I wasn’t to be honest. I was so scared that something was going to happen to Leo, I was petrified  that we were going to lose him and I didn’t feel as though I could fall in love with him because I didn’t feel like I could cope having my heart broken again like when we lost Millie. That soon changed though, when he was born within seconds I knew I was totally in love with him.  (Me, heavily preggers last year Christmas time) 

  
I’ve struggled this year, a lot. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change a thing but I have found everything twice as hard because my head is constantly in worry mode. With Millie nothing ever really worried me, I was such a laid back mum and that’s exactly how I wanted to be. 

With Leo, I’m trying to be similar, I know I won’t ever be as laid back and easy as it was with Millie because of the tragedy that we have suffered but we don’t want Leo to suffer because of what happened to Millie; no matter how hard it will be on Dan and I. 

You will be pleased to hear that we have become a little bit braver with Leo and we will now allow two very close friends of ours look after him for a couple of hours, we weren’t sure when we would get to this point but we knew it would happen. These friends have both been on our first aid courses and have children of their own and we are never more than a couple of miles away when he is being looked after. 

For Leo though, this means he gets to spend time with other people on his own. To be honest, I am shocked that he is such a confident little boy when it comes to him being around other people and them handling him because of how much more on edge Dan and I have been, but he is very much like his big sister, he will go to anyone and let anyone hold him. For example, last night we attended an awards ceremony (you see because we won’t leave Leo unless he is very close by, Leo attends all events like these with us) and he made friends with the lovely man and lady sat next to us who also happened to have this amazing guide dog with them. Leo didn’t think twice about throwing some smiles out,having a chat, stroking the dog and giving high fives to them! He loves the attention I think 😀 – which in particular attracts women. This so makes me laugh! I can turn around for 2 minutes and just like last night I will turn around and Dan and Leo will be stood there surrounded by women, I find it hilarious! Haha

  
(inspiration Award won last night)

I know some people would’ve judged us last night for having our little man out so late with us but am I bothered? Not in the slightest. Lots of people don’t know why our son would be out that late with us and don’t know the heartache behind it – so why need I worry? If Leo being with us out till midnight keeps me sane, that’s what we will do. He sleeps until he needs it whether that’s going to bed at 7pm and sleeping till 7am or midnight until noon. Last night, he got to meet all these brand new people and see all the London lights, had his photo taken at Baker Street and travelled on the tube at midnight and he loved it and as soon as we got back to the hotel, he was in his pyjamas and fast asleep within minutes and didn’t wake up until 9am. He is now currently asleep on us on the train home. 

    
I’m not a mum who sticks to rules and lists and follows books, I like to erm .. wing it for want of a better phrase. Some mums like to follow guides and advice which is absolutely fine and works for a lot of mums but I’m the complete polar opposite and I like to fly by the seat of my pants and take everything as it happens. Trust me, if I tried to plan anything I can guarantee something would go wrong anyway, so I’m better not planning anything – that’s what I tell Dan anyway 😀 seriously though, I’m just not a planner or scheduler, never have been and I know that there are plenty of people that I drive crazy in my life because of that! Just don’t ever ask me to be on time anywhere, I am a total self confessed “latee” – and yes I know that is not a real word but it sounds appropriate! Bizarrely I have been very amused by a definition that I have seen online today (see below) … This made me laugh so much as it is totally me …  A time optimist also known as the below … This is so my word of the day 😀

 

(Photos from http://quotelounge.tumblr.com/post/134963265638/1082858991224372451-swedish-time-optimist)

I don’t care if people judged me for having Leo out late, he’s our child and we make up the rules for him. No one should judge anyone’s parenting because every single child is different and that is actually what is so fun about children, that’s why they are totally unique.

We also paid Winter Wonderland in Manchester a visit on their press night on the Friday just passed and I really didn’t know what to expect but it was amazing and if you are thinking about going – then it’s definitely worth the ticket price – all rides included in the ticket. Leo was amazed by all the lights and noises from the rides and the little 4 year girl we went with too absolutely loved the rides and would have gone on everything 5 times over if she would have been allowed. We also have our charity stall there on various dates up until Christmas Eve, so please do come and say hi if you see us.

   

We haven’t quite managed to get our Chritsmas tree up here at home yet – but we will do this week. I’ve never really been a fan of having them up from early December anyway, they start to get in my way and I am pretty sure Rolo would have had it over by now. We will be putting it up this week though and getting some lovely lights up for Leo to watch. We are trying to do everything that we would have done for Millie’s first Christmas so that we don’t look back and think “we wish we would’ve done that” – it’s Leo’s first Christmas and we will make it as special as possible for him – so lots to do this week , watch this space.

Leo seems to be changing at such a fast pace, he’s nearly 10 months now … Where did the time go? 

xxx

Don’t forget to order your Millie’s Trust goodies for you Christmas Presents, last call for online orders for guaranteed Christmas deliveries.

  
Order here

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A reindeer called Ralph???

Rudolph the red nosed reindeer, has a very shiny nose …

They are all over the place now … Christmas songs I’m talking about. Most shops that I’ve walked in to this week have been playing them ... Santa Claus is coming to town … Walking along … Walking into a winter wonderland … All I want for Christmas is you…. 

Last year, I could not stand them, this year I’m finding myself humming to them and I even caught Dan singing to one of them this week in a shop that we were in; how things haved changed. 

As a lot of you will know, we’ve been unable to celebrate Christmas for three years because we lost Millie, it has just never felt right because she never even got her first Christmas and it’s just been another day for us ever since …. But this year, yesterday … There was this 

 
Yes, that is Leo, Dan and myself with The Santa Claus himself .. Yes the real one guys 😀

6 months ago, I would’ve have said that this probably wasn’t going to happen …But yesterday it did, thanks to a lovely lady named Kerry and we owe her a huge thank you. 

Kerry has been a follower of ours since we began and she wrote (yes, wrote to me, I loved getting a letter in the post – actual letters don’t happen that often!) to me a few weeks ago and asked to help us make Christmas special for us and for Leo as she knew we were struggling … And it just happened that she works within a Reindeer sanctuary, so she invited us over on their press day for their launch for this season. 

So yesterday we woke up at 6.30am and I actually felt excited about our visit, I’ve not had that feeling for a long time, it felt special .

We then packed up the car and headed off to spend the day at this amazing place called Blithbury Reindeer Lodge and our little man got to see the big man arriving himself into the reindeer sanctuary with 7 reindeer (this was the only day Santa arrives like this as he’s boarding at the Blithbury Reindeer Lodge until Christmas Eve.) 

As Santa arrived, Leo and his cousins got very excited and Leo couldn’t stop smiling – this was so lovely to watch but also so hard because I see Leo experiencing new things and I absolutely love it but my heart also breaks when he experiences something that Millie never did. 

As soon as we arrived we got to meet some lovely reindeer including the actual Red Deer, from the film Braveheart, Albert, who resides there. 

We walked through the doors of this magical place and were met with not only some of Santa’s Elves but also some gorgeous baby Reindeer from Scandavia and some beautiful home grown ones too! 

Leo got a very special present from the sanctuary but we’ll tell you about that in a few weeks closer to Christmas. 

We were very lucky yesterday with the rain holding off until the end of our visit, this made sure our visit was even more enjoyable! Picking up some feed on the way round we got to some of the older reindeer, in particular we loved the white ones, we thought they were stunning.   

Then it was time for Elf School – learning about how Elves work in Santa’s workshop and what reindeer like to eat. 

Then Leo went to meet Santa for the first time. This is how he reacted …

 
Seriously though, he loved it and we have to say that Santa was absolutely fantastic with Leo and with us. Santa knew all about what we are going through and he made everything very extra special and told Leo what a good boy he’d been this year!

Then he sent us into his special elf workshop, where we have to say the presents were amazing and the elves had worked really hard to produce some fabulous presents this year (in fact the best we have ever seen in an elf workshop).
 
Then he met Ralph, this is Ralph 😀

What was so lovely to see is how well the animals are looked after at Blithbury and I didn’t know until yesterday that they are such chilled out animals and so beautiful and soft. 

Our special visit soon came to an end when Leo needed milk and a long sleep with his reindeer friend that he had picked up on the way round!  

So what a milestone for us. We never want Leo to miss out on anything growing up because of the sadness that Dan and I experience because we lost his big sister. 

We want him to experience everything the world has to offer (within financial reach, of course, lol) but seriously though, Christmas is a huge thing for families and we want Leo’s first Christmas to be so special, just like Millie’s would have been-no matter how hard it is for Dan and I.

We aren’t sure at all what we are going to actually do on Christmas Day. We know we want to stay at home and just be our little family and I suppose everything else will just fall into place around us. We just want Leo to enjoy it and obviously to build all those memories for us of all of Leo’s special days. 

So thank you so much to Kerry and Blithbury Lodge (click here to visit their website and book to visit) for our special visit and making us so welcome. 

And Christmas .. We think we can just about survive you.m

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Birthdays after the loss of a child 

Today is Millie and Leo’s  daddy’s birthday, he hates them. He doesn’t like birthdays anymore and hasn’t done since we lost Millie, it’s just one of those things that don’t seem not to mean much anymore. 

This year I arranged for us to go away for the night. A few months ago, just before I had Leo, I visited one of the kind venues that provide a room for our Millie’s Trust courses in Chester. Whilst I was there visiting, I absolutely loved it – it’s such a beautiful place , I loved it that much that I knew I wanted to bring Dan to see it, hence why I booked a night for his birthday here. 

Inglewood Manor is this amazing place ( not only because they provide a permanent venue for us ) but because it is such a beautiful relaxing place to stay.

I booked the night away because we have to try and be as “normal” as possible for Leo’s sake and celebrating daddy’s birthday is a normal thing to do. The way I think about it, is that we do birthday’s now when Leo is so small he can’t remember, these will be the hardest and by the time he understands Daddy and I will feel a little better and celebrate with a little more enthusiasm than we have done since we lost our Mills. 

Inglewood Manor have made it extra special for Dan too this year,  we had chocolate strawberries and Prosecco waiting for us and an extra special present for Leo waiting for him, with his own little note! ( see photo below )

 
Leo loves his little penguin it was such a kind  gesture from Fiona and team there. 

Something else made this little present even more special, whilst Dan and I were eating our birthday dinner , Leo was playing with his penguin and HE PICKED IT UP IN HIS HAND!!! 

 
This is the first time that we have ever seen him grab something and pick it up!! (See photo above ) I got a little bit excited in the restaurant ( which by the way has lovely Goat’s Cheese Mousse and does a very tasty ham hock starter ) and took this fab smiley photo 😁

Whilst we were waiting for our meal to arrive, Leo couldn’t decide whether he wanted to be awake or asleep – to be honest, I think he is just like his big sister, loves to be nosey. Before he fell asleep though, we managed to get a lovely family photo thanks to a lovely staff member at the hotel. 


We headed up to the room as we needed to get Leo settled into his travel cot and we were playing with Leo on the bed before his bedtime bottle, I’m not quite sure how we didn’t end up sleeping on the floor as Leo seemed to like the bed too much!   

  

We’d already planned a trip to Chester Zoo on Dan’s birthday, this was also Leo’s first time visiting. For those of you that don’t know, there is a gorgeous giraffe at Chester Zoo named after our daughter Millie and we try and pop along and see her as often as we can.  Without knowing, today was actually extra special in the giraffe house because a couple of days a go , a new giraffe had been born. We saw the new giraffe today and it’s extremely cute , I can’t believe Millie ( Giraffe Millie ) was ever this small as a baby giraffe as she is now very tall and elegant.

 
The photo above is Millie the giraffe when she was only days old in March 2013. ( photo credited Peter Byrne/Press Association) – taken from Chester Zoo Website .

Millie the giraffe and all her friends and family at Chester Zoo are extra special because they are rare Rothschild Giraffes and there are currently less than 700 of this breed left in the wild.

You can learn more about Rothschild giraffes by clicking here

Anyway, so even though Dan hates birthdays nowadays, I think we made his day bearable and kept him busy enough so that he didn’t overthink things.

I’ve even just managed to get him to blow some candles out on his little birthday cake and he’s now sat on the sofa having a beer; happy that his birthday is nearly over. 

  
The thing is, it’s not just our birthdays that we aren’t fans of. Since Millie passed, we have struggled with everyone’s birthdays and Christmas’ – in fact we haven’t actually “done” Christmas since we lost her because we haven’t been able to cope with the whole big event. We didn’t do anything the first year, volunteered at an elderly people’s event the year after, kept ourselves to ourselves last year as I was heavily pregnant with Leo but this year we know that we want to change because Leo is here and he deserves a Christmas. We aren’t sure how much of Christmas we will do this year, we know that we only want it to be small, we don’t want to make it a huge deal but we do want Leo to have his first Christmas because Millie never had hers and we never had one as a family. 

We know we are going to see tons and tons of birthdays and Christmas’ with Leo and we know that we will make every one of them extra special. 

Sometimes when you lose someone so special, nothing else in the world matters and special occasions don’t seem that special anymore until someone else comes along to make it special again – Leo has done this for us 😀

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Don’t forget you can still enter our virtual run that is taking place alongside our “Millie Madness” month in October. 

Click here for full details and enter soon as there aren’t many places left.