The bell still rings for those who truly believe



This morning the pavements are glistening with an early morning winter frost and the the sun is shining in a brilliant blue sky.  It is a beautiful cold crisp winter morning.

Winter mornings like these transport me back to the kitchen table of my childhood watching my Mom make Christmas cake. The kitchen warm and cozy, the sitting room lit up with Christmas lights and a fire burning with flames flickering and curling up the chimney breast.

Christmas is Magical.




I am a true Christmas Addict.

Addicted to glitter, addicted to fairy lights, addicted to hot chocolate and candy canes. Just uttering the words CANDY CANE makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. 

I am utterly unapologetic about my sheer adoration of the Holiday Season.



After watching the Polar Express Movie a few years ago I decided to create a memory for my Children around the message within this movie.  

Believe in mystery and magic.

Believe in the strength of the human spirit.

Believe in yourself 

Whatever God you worship, whatever religion you practice and whatever way you celebrate the holiday season remember that our time on this beautiful planet should be filled with love and respect for our fellow human beings. 

This is the only religion we require. 

So every year I hold a Polar Express Movie Night for all my family. It’s a special night to rejoice and celebrate the innocence of children, the joy of childhood, the love of family, the belief in something bigger than ourselves and a reminder to celebrate the greatest gift of life.

The gift of  LOVE.



My favourite part of the night is watching the faces of my young nieces and nephew light up when they see the table set out with all the goodies! They are so excited, all decked out in their Christmas pajamas, full of pure love, joy and anticipation. Jumping excitedly around to look at all the different treats and gasping in awe at the twinkling lights, the large pot of hot chocolate on the stove and the little bells lined out on the table that signify hope and belief. 

Eyes wide as they watch the little train on the table rumbling around the tracks, whistling every few seconds and passing through a candy cane marshmallow landscape.

Their bright wide smiles make my heart melt and it is at that very moment I realise that this is what Christmas is truly about. 


polar express movie night

Create a little Magic …

I took a fantastic idea from TheChangeableTableblogspot.com and it is an absolute winner! It’s a magic sleeping potion to be taken by the children on Christmas Eve to help them fall into a deep slumber while they await the arrival of Santa Claus. This brought yelps of excitement!.

For each magic potion you require the following:

A paper coffee cup with lid

An individual sachet of hot chocolate

A large marshmallow or a handful of smaller marshmallows 

A candy cane

A chocolate bell ( you can usually buy a large bag of these quite cheaply) 

A Christmas sticker and tag 

A cellophane bag

Take your paper cup and sit it on the lid, attach a Christmas sticker of choice to your cup. Pop the chocolate sachet, the chocolate bell, the candy stick and a marshmallow into the cup , place in the cellophane bag and tie with a ribbon and tag, Give each child their individual magic potion together with a copy of the poem below and watch the excitement brew! 


Who doesn’t love a goodie bag …

I found these beautiful sparkling bags last year and I just couldn’t pass them up! How cute are these!

The children pop their magic potion into the bag together with any goodies they choose to take home . Once they know they can take goodies home it stops them eating too much candy on the night avoiding tummy aches 🙂 

Even the adults grab a goodie bag if they wish…. you’re never too old for candy!


Polar Express movie night

polar express movie nightchristmas Tree Polar Express party


I make a mix of treats and cakes and one of the easiest and most popular is the marshmallow treats on a stick, Simply buy a packet of large marshmallows ( I used the giant American ones ) dip in melted chocolate ( white or milk) and sprinkle with Christmas sprinkles, Put in the fridge to set a little then stick a cake pop stick into the centre of each mallow and you are done! Couldn’t be easier!

I pop some of these into individual cellophane bags and tie with a ribbon so the children can take one home in their goodies bags.


polar express movie night


Little fairy cakes are always a winner with children so it goes without saying that I make a batch of simply little cakes , ice them with a vanilla icing and top with Christmas themed iced candies.

These little snowmen candies not surprisingly were a real hit . How cute are these little fellas 🙂



I used the same large marshmallows to make these little hot chocolate teacups. Another absolute winner!

The mallow sits on little shortbread biscuits covered in melted white chocolate which allows the mallow to set easily on the cookie. The handles are broken candy canes and the hot chocolate on top is just melted milk chocolate topped with mini marshmallows.

Simple but very effective



marshmallow hot chocolate biscuits


I make my hot chocolate with Cadbury’s Hot chocolate with a couple of spoonfuls of Nutella stirred through it so it has that delicious hazelnut chocolate flavour!

Top with whipped cream and any decoration of your choosing . Add a selection of little decorated marshmallows and the kids will love you !






For the adults I make snowball cocktails . I LOVE these old fashioned utterly simple cocktails . They are like grown up ice cream treats ! Just scrumptious! You only require two ingredients. That’s it!. Try them you wont be disappointed .

60ml Warninks advocaat


Juice of one lime wedge

Pour advocaat into a high ball glass, add ice (lots of it ) top with lemonade, stir and enjoy! ( as you can see I like mine in a cocktail glass but it’s traditionally served in a hi ball glass) 



My Christmas pudding takes pride of place . A family recipe that I got from my Mother in Law so it ensures a little piece of her graces the table on this night.


Happy Holidays everyone! 

May you find peace, joy and love during this holiday season.  Remember,  it’s not what’s under the tree at Christmas, it’s whose around it.

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