Giving Thanks or ‘Friendsgiving’…

Giving Thanks or ‘Friendsgiving’…

I’m now featuring on MumCentral.com.au and here is the article we’ve published for November – An Aussie Thanksgiving!

Mrs Jones Vintage Thanksgiving
This month I thought I’d share a tradition my family has taken on – Thanksgiving. Not the American kind, but a very special Aussie kind that is much less stress, more fun and heaps easier than all of the dramas that come with Christmas!

Are you on board? Yup. Okay, first, a quick history lesson…

Thanksgiving Lowdown

Moving into 2014 things have changed a little. Thanksgiving is officially celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November – this year it’s on the 27th; it’s a major US holiday and the focus is on travelling to be with family, giving thanks and giving to others.

“Yawn. I’m not American, Mrs Jones.”

Don’t leave me here! I know, I know, we’re not American, Thanksgiving has nothing to do with us, and we’ve already got enough to do each year before Christmas! I hear you! I know… Once you become a wifey or a mama the fun stops and it becomes all about everyone else and making sure ‘stuff’ happens.

Gifts purchased. Tick. Oh, wait, didn’t the boy ask for that new water pistol they’re advertising now – two weeks before Christmas – and I can’t find them anywhere… Arghhh… That’ll have to wait!
Menu organised. Tick… wait a minute… I’ve got to find a bloody recipe for my brother’s vegan girlfriend… Do I need to get her a non-leather dining chair? Hmmm… That’ll wait.
Dinner or lunch. Still deciding.
Their place or ours. Can’t we just stay here for the day. Just once? Packing the kids up for another car trip is just too much. I’ll talk to hubby and see if his parents will come here.
Real or fake tree. I know the kids want a real one but do I want to vacuum pine needles for 4 weeks running?
Re-decorating the tree. Tick! I’ll redo it once the kids have gone to bed.

Okay, so we’ve established that Christmas is pretty much about everyone but us!

Hmmm… but what if things were different?
What if there was a celebration YOU actually enjoyed?
What if you could have a fun, relaxing and easy get-together leading up to Christmas that became something the whole family looked forward to?

Girls, you can! And that celebration is Aussie Thanksgiving!

Quick, easy and simple as you like. Take a look at the infographic below.

KISS Thanksgiving

Just remember a few of my KISS (Keep It Simple Sweetie) principles:

  1. You’ve got to invite REAL friends. People you know and love and WANT to spend time with!
  2. Keep the food simple. Barbecuing is an awesome idea because there’s little prep and it keeps the men busy and it also means you can ask friends to each bring a side dish
  3. Keep dessert simple. Ice cream cones or if you want to go crazy, an ice cream decorating bar for the kids (big and small!)
  4. Have some outdoor and indoor game ideas for when the kids get bored
  5. Ask everyone to bring a food donation (there’s your giving to the less fortunate)
  6. Make some time for everyone to sit together and get real. What is everyone really thankful for?
  7. Here’s the best part. Australian Thanksgiving ISN’T on the fourth Thursday in November, it’s on the fourth SATURDAY. This gives you time and headspace.

So that, my darlings, is it!
It’s that simple.

Now, I don’t want to hear any, “Seriously, I don’t have enough time now, why on earth would I add ANOTHER thing to our already insane schedule?”

Why? Well, girls, let me tell you why.

Because you can. Yep, it’s that simple.

Also because if you don’t start making time to simplify life, and start a few family traditions your kids will have nothing magical to look back on. This is easy peasy and kids will look back on this as such a fun time spent playing with friends, with no timetable to work to. A time of shared food, laughing until it hurts and coming together to do something good for those who need it.

Now my darlings it’s time to make this tradition yours! Take a deep breath, take charge, simplify a few things and make time to fit it in – I promise you won’t regret it!

I’d love to hear your stories of how your Aussie Thanksgiving went and any tips you’d like to share with others!

With Love
Mrs Jones x

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A Very Vintage Halloween…

A Very Vintage Halloween…

Hello Little Ones, Being Australian we really don’t do Halloween, although this isn’t stopping every major retailer from here to Tasmania giving their October marketing dollar a red hot run. So rather than spend the whole (I’m only spending a small portion) post bitching about it I shall share some gorgeous Halloween vintage photography with you instead! I’ve got to say unless you’re American and want to have a fun gathering teaching us Colonials all about this delightful tradition, I feel that by ‘celebrating’ Halloween here in Melbourne you’re likely to get, at best arrested, and at worst, never spoken to again by your neighbours who (I presume like most Aussies you ignore for the whole year, including Christmas Day) can find it rather surprising, to say the very least, to see their close neighbours ghoulishly-dressed child magically appear on their front porch, come early evening on October 31st, demanding sugary treats… Honestly friends, just give it a miss or use it as a good excuse for a catch-up with a few other families and have a backyard BBQ, letting the kids run free, now that daylight savings has arrived. Take a look at the tradition of Halloween and how and why it started; base your celebrations around that if you wish. So, rather than feature anything spooky, scary or gruesome, don’t into the hype here in Australia (this comment is to be thoroughly ignored, my darling and most delightful followers from the good ol’ US of A – this is your celebration; enjoy!) I thought I’d share some awesome vintage Halloween images for you to enjoy! So darlings. Enjoy!

Vintage Halloween kids

These little devils files look like they’re having fun!

Halloween vintage

Every year since 1952, Margery became more and more concerned that her sons may not find suitable wives.

Vintage Halloween monkey boy

Timmy was told to sit on the naughty step after he stole another banana.

Wolf man vintage Halloween

Giving Frank the table scraps seemed to be giving his coat a glossy shine.

Vintage Halloween kids

It was going to be a long night…

Vintage Halloween

Gladys and Bob were thrilled that adoption laws had finally been relaxed.

Vintage Halloween

The spacesuit always made Bobby feel he could punch above his weight.

Vintage Halloween

Edith kept kept a momento from each of her ex-husbands.

Love Mrs Jones x

Tala bakeware is baaaack…

Introducing Tala bakeware – since 1899! Tala is one of Britain’s oldest and most loved baking and kitchenware brands. It has been trusted by bakers and cooks all over the world since 1899.  Many of the pieces are still made in England today. The classic Tala cook’s dry measures are handmade using the same machinery since the 1920’s. In fact they are made by Brenda, Maureen, Graham or one of their small team in Liverpool, England.

Pop over to Vintage & Nostalgia Co. for some Tala goodness! Ooh, and don’t forget, Vintage & Nostalgia Co. offer a flat rate $10 shipping in Australia – hooray!

Tala-collection-banner