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14 for dinner & some festive fun

This has been on my list to post since the 'big event' but have held off due to the deluge of 'my 1st blog' posts (some good I may add, some rather short). If I leave it any longer it'll be Easter, so here goes with the expectation it'll get buried over the weekend!!

It's a simple blog based around our Christmas week...

Christmas morning and not a creature was stiring... This drives Lesley mad as she's always the 1st up Christmas morning, usually about 5am, and has always been the same ever since I've known her. Even in the days before we were married she'd arrive at my mams at silly O'Clock... Anyway, looks like the big guy has been... spot the photographer..

Finally after much slamming of doors and flushing of loo's, the boys managed to drag themselves from their pits...

Good old Patrick makes that extra special effort....

As the blog title suggest we had a houseful for dinner: my sis and kids, her hubbies m-in-law, my brother and his partner and my aunt and her friend. Table set, emergencies chairs at the ready, all systems go!

Good old Lesley has done Christmas dinner for the whiole family every year since we've been married, even when we moved house on Christmas Eve in a wreck of a kitchen.. my heroine. Mind you, she on the slurp early this year.... Aunt Bessies Yorkshires (I know not traditional with turkey, but the kids demand them!!)

Dinner over we retire to the lounge, and after a chill and a quiz, the Wii comes out and teh dance games begin. Dylan in the swing of it,

Sums up the day perfectly for me!

After the dance off Part I we retire back to the conservatory for cheese and biscuits and Patrick has a lesson off Pops on DOF. Not a bad effort lad...

Now the serious stuff starts!! Pats takes on big bro Josh aka 'shapes' in the dance off, clearly all those years at Uni haven't been wasted as the big lad shows us his moves...

What more can I say, it might not look pretty, but it's effective...all together now Y.M.C.A. My aunt looks on horrified behind me... :-)

Mark and Les get into the Bollywood mood, oh the drama...

Amidst the chaos, Dylan finds some quiet time with his new DS game. Loved the lighting on this.

His dad Lee keeps a watchful eye, and guarding his glasss of wine verrrry carefully!!

All danced out, it time for more party games. this is Dylan concentrating on the chopstick game. You have to pick up as many M&M's as possible and place a each colour in a seperate cup cake holder. Not was easy as it sounds. 10 in a minute was our record, not by me may I add....

Lesley has a go, and you can tell by her shiny nails it's not her who does the washing up!!

We normally always try and fit a walk in over the Christmas period, but the weather this year was soooo bad, plus I was on nights, so we headed back to Ambleside and booked a session on the climbing wall. Joe hanging on in the Bouldering room.

The Bouldering room is a great way of improving technique and building strength. Joe traverses the difficult section.

Josh crosses the corner as his brothers offer some support...... yeah right!!

Eventually we move into the big room and Pats and Joe head up the wall.

Almost there...

Pats tops out, although that harness looks a bit tight, Soprano in the choir next week perhaps??

Poor old Josh has a terrible fear of heights. But give him his due he had a real good go, and the instructor with us did a great job of encouraging him... not like his brothers who relished in calling him a wuss... I thought you were very brave son :-)

Joes flies up the tricky corner route. Ah, if only I wasn't taking pictures I'd have been up there like a shot....

After pancakes and a coffe in the cafe which overlooks the wall, we headed back to the car and manged to grab this reflection towards the main road. Love the old white street lights, they cast great light.

I worked NY Eve, but was off NY day, so had a walk round to our local sports club for teh Old Rivals RU fixture between Vickers and Furness. It was a bracing day and a hard fought contest, including several altercations> Vickers in the red coming way victorious.

It's my neices birthday on Ny eve, and she 'presuaded' her uncle Ian to do a photo shoot party for her friends. I manged to borrow some studio lights off a mate, and we had a great afternoon doing some fun stuff.

Manged to get some interesting shots with a ring light as well.

Of course, it really was about having fun, and the girls didn't disappoint!!

Difficult to get a group shot in the space we had, plus the fill flash on the right had packed in, so this was the best I could manage.

And finally, a belated Christmas gift off the big man as my new boots arrived.. I wonder how long it'll take to wear these out..

That's how we did it this year, a lovely family Christmas and we are lucky to have a squad who get on so well and enjoy each others company.

Thanks for stopping by.

Ian and co.

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 00:55

Great Blog Ian! Brings it all back for me! i love christmas and was so disapointed when it ended lol

Thanks for sharing!



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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 02:46

Great blog Ian! Haven't had a big family Christmas in years, forgotten how much fun it is.....thanks for reminding me.


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 04:19

Hi Ian nice one and well done brings many happy memories of Christmases past Martin

Allways be prepaired you never know what shots around the corner

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 06:27

what a smashing blog...any of new year.???


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 08:57

I enjoyed the blog Ian, made me smile from begining to end, there were some great family snaps plus some creative studio poses, the dancing!! I definatly won't be seeing on strictly, and the wall, no timer on your camera?? Those boots!,

 just perfect, eh!.. I got a hosepipe, practical or what? Smashing blog. Thanks for sharing, all the best wishes to you and the family for 2012.  



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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:08

Top blog thought the light ring shot was great. I remember when I was bout 14 (long ago) I was on a wall at the local sports center I climbed it with ease then sat on a ledge looked down and froze an instructor and my mate had to climb up to coach me down. He still reminds me of it to this day. You can't beat family get togethers I always do the cooking on xmas day well i do the cooking most times. Hope you had an enjoyable christmas all the best for the new year and look forward to May.

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:17

Aaawwwww! That was lovely Ian! Just what Christmas is all about Smile


Loved the idea of the "photo-shoot" party, and what a lot of little stars Smile


Thanks for sharing,

Jacqui x

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:25

Great blog Ian, and thank you for letting us in to your front room, for a peek at an Allington Christmas,I'd stick with the walking though,the dancing is not quite you dear Wink



Flickr Page

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:42

Nice little family to be envied by some of us.

All the best to you, Leslie and the boys for 2012.


'Bokeh' Competition entry:-

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:43


Well done for doing this Christmassy blog, some wonderful atmospheric shots, but the ones that stand out for me are the portrait ones, especially the group one, which is arranged to perfection!

Very well done!

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:45

Eat your heart out Harry Judd!

A glimpse into Allington life, like peeping through the keyhole.  I enjoyed it.

Very nicely done with some really well taken pictures.  The picture of Dylan, just beaming, is my favourite.

It's mint sauce in this house, with lamb, with beef, with pork, etc!

Jen xx

I wish I was a Glow Worm, a Glow Worm's never glum, 'cause how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 09:45

Hi Ian another well put together photoblog you certainly looked as though you had a great Christmas and so you should everybody should as it is a great time of the year. Ian a brilliant blog as usual and many thanks for posting take care best wishes BoB. P/S Any of those Yorkshires spare as they look great.!!!LOL.

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 10:12

Blessed is the man with his family around him!  Super blog Ian, my favourite shot is Dylan's face illuminated by his game, superb.

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 10:24

Brilliant Ian, thank you so much for brightening up my weekend with this great blog. The one of Patrick and your comment made me smile; you must admit he made up for it though with that brilliant capture of the hedgehog, which is cute by the way.

Thanks for posting and sharing; this is what Finepix is really about eh, making each other smile and sharing the good things.



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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 10:46

Hi Ian

Happy New Year M8.   Just what Christmas is all about.  Can me and the Mrs come next year.  I think my diary is free!!!

Lovely.  Thanks

Fave shot is the ring light in the eye, cracker that one.  In fact a Christmas Cracker!!!

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 11:07

We take in all waif and strays Steve, I think the record was 18 one year - and Lesley was pregnant at the time!!

Thanks for all the lovely comments, and Viv nailed the reason why I posted it, made me smile to looking back


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 11:22

 Hi Ian. A lovely interesting insight into your life. Not a mountain in sight unless you count the mountain of pressies, food and bundles of fun. Looks like you had a good Christmas. You got your new hiking boots then! LOL..Good pic of them. Hubby and myself were in Austria for Christmas and walked a little bit in the snow and fog! Typical it snowed heavy the day before we came home. There are avalanches there now and have been plane delays. Going out for a stroll now in the fresh air and clear the Christmas cob webs away. All the best to you, Lesley and your family for 2012. Best Wishes.Alison Smile

Alison's Keep Fit Feel Good Fun Photoblog

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 17:04

A well put together blog, well done Ian.


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 17:22

Well done, Ian, a terrific family blog. Thanks for letting us have a peep in Allington Towers. Dylan certainly sums up what Christmas is about. Best wishes for 2012.



Flickr Photostream:



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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 18:00

How many Fujians can Lesley cook for roundabout May time. Brilliant, the ring light did it for me and Dylan on the DS.


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 19:57

super blog Ian, looks like you all had a brilliant time

Looking forward to you next "outdoor" blogs and of course the meet in May xxx

gallery ;


still checking on you all every now and again !!!


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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 20:12

Fabulous blog. It looks a really good Christmas  and New Year.  Your wife deserves a medal for Christmas dinner. Liked the photoshoot.

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Date Sat, 07/01/2012 - 20:18

Haven't read many blogs for a while but really enjoyed this one - glad you all had a good Christmas - looked like a lot of fun for all. Especially liked the macro with ring light around the eye.   

Thanks for sharing - cheers John


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Date Sun, 08/01/2012 - 00:20


Lovely blog with great traditional family pictures.

Well done Ian.


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Date Tue, 17/01/2012 - 14:34

Some nice images Smile

I have just done a new Blog called ‘10 Days in Morocco’ it’s taken me a couple of days to download and is a bit of an epic – sorry. I bet you can’t make it too the end Smile

Thank you for all the lovely comments and ‘likes’ on my Blog – 2011 A Good Year Smile

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