Recently it was Hannah’s second birthday. So while I still could I wanted to plan a sweet little tea party for her with a bit of a bunny rabbit theme as I’m all too aware that over the coming years she will choose her own theme and characters for her party and her cake!

I really enjoy planning for little family gatherings like this, note pad in hand, scribbled ideas and too much time spent on Pinterest is just my thing!  As I planned everything in my head it soon developed into a vintage tea party with a touch of rustic and the colours pink and gold crept in as I decided on pretty tableware and decorations, so I thought I would share some photos of the set up and the lovely bits I used to pull it all together.

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Last week Hannah turned two! We had a tea party, Hannah loves tea (and bunny rabbits) so I built a little theme around that. It was a simple family affair with lots of treats and cake (and tea!)

So while planning I got thinking about making some cute decorations using teacups, and considering mum and I have a plethora of vintage china I knew it would be just perfect to fit in with our theme.

So here goes, this is you’ll need to make some pretty teacup succulents:

Teacups & saucers

{Check out ebay and your local charity shops where you’ll find loads to choose from.}

Cacti or Succulents

{I picked these up in our local garden centre, ranging from 99p to £2

Small pebbles or stones

Potting soil


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It’s the season of goodwill but also the season when we spend a lot of money on Christmas gifts and food. I like to try and spread a little Christmas cheer by giving to charity at Christmas, it really is easy and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. There are heaps of worthy charities out there and so many ways to give, here’s our top seven this year:

SHOEBOX APPEAL (Operation Christmas Child)

Last month we packed a shoe box and sent it on its way through Operation Christmas Child, this is something our family have been doing for many years and something I myself sis as a teenager. See details in my previous blog post here.


This year we received a personalised letters from santa through the charity Diabetes UK. After filling in some details online and for just £4.99 you will receive a beautiful personalised letter as well as a free text from Santa, a good behaviour certificate, an activity booklet and a photo of a reindeer! There are a few charities out there offering this service but this is a charity close to our hearts as my husband Chris has been a type 1 diabetic since he was a child. See here for details.

CHARITY SANTA VISIT (Children’s Cancer Unit, Royal Victoria Hospital)

We also visited a charity santa! I’m a bit of a sucker for a santa visit! (I will be an embarrassing mummy!) We visited the local Christmas Market in Belfast and their santa supporting the Children’s Cancer Unit at the Royal Victoria Hospital for Sick Children. Hannah wasn’t very taken by him but at least she didn’t cry! For £10 we received a little gift and a family photo with santa!


Its rare to receive a letter with a stamp on it except perhaps at Christmas and birthdays. Used stamps from Christmas cards can be sent to the RNIB used stamps appeal were they are sorted by volunteers – they are usually sold by weight, but if they can identify any valuable stamps they can be sold for a higher price. They expect to receive around £10 for one kilogram of British stamps, and up to £15 for a kilogram of overseas stamps. So quite literally for the price of a stamp you can post off your used stamps and help people with sight loss, How easy is that!


There are loads of charity Christmas cards out there and if you send cards its another great way to give a little to charity. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is another charity close to our hearts, we are both volunteer lifeboat crew for our local station in Bangor and Chris is also the station mechanic, so this is our go-to charity for christmas cards. There are many charity cards available on the high street and in supermarkets but there is not always a high percentage of the sale going back to the charity so why not consider purchasing directly from the charity. This can be as easy as popping into your local charity shop on the high street, there are many fantastic charities to choose from. Alternatively some people choose to give a donation to their favourite charity rather than sending cards.

FOODBANKS (Neighbourhood Food Collection Tesco)

Christmas can be a such a difficult time for individuals and families who are already just about getting by on extremely tight budgets. With increased winter fuel bills, and the pressure of choosing between heating and eating, can sadly push many families into food crisis. It is so easy to purchase an extra few items in your grocery shop to give to your local foodbank, many supermarkets have onsite collection points making it super convenient to drop off your purchases! We have given items through our local Tesco, their two charity partners are The Trussell Trust and Fare Share There are many foodbanks operating locally that need your support all year round.

{This photo is from last year, so far I haven’t had a chance to take one this year!}


Let’s be honest, who doesn’t have a Christmas jumper? From the crazy elf look, to the one with a flashing nose its becoming something we all have stashed in the wardrobe! This year Christmas Jumper Day was on Friday 16th December, Hannah’s nursery was getting involved and having a fun day for the kids! By asking parents to get involved and send their kids in their Christmas jumper and bring a £1 donation they were helping support the charity Save The Children.

I intended to have this posted much sooner but where has this month gone?! I hope it will be thought provoking and you will use it as inspiration for next year.

Thank you for reading and for all your support this year, wishing you all a very HAPPY CHRISTMAS!

Christine, Chris & Hannah xx





For some years now our family has supported Operation Christmas Child, I can’t say for sure how long it is but as a young teen I remember bringing our packed shoe boxes into church to be sent off. Mum has continued to pack shoe boxes over the years and now it’s something we want Hannah to do each year in the run up to Christmas.

We donate through Operation Christmas Child, OCC is an initiative of Samaritan’s Purse UK, a Christian relief and development charity working amongst communities in need across Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

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