Christmas Eve in Lapland

Trip Start Dec 16, 2012
Trip End Jan 21, 2013

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Flag of Finland  , Lapland,
Monday, December 24, 2012

Our first full day on tour was unforgettable.

After breakfast we followed our guide Arko onto the edge of the forest, and the kids helped cut down a small spruce tree to use as the group's Xmas tree this week. The kids loaded it onto a little sled and pulled it up the hill to the hotel for drying.

Then we caught a snow mobile pulled sleigh across a picturesque frozen lake to a little hut deep in the forest. Elves met us off the sleigh and Tom and Penny were first up to meet Santa. They followed the elves into the forest, up a lamp lit pathway, to a little hut where they found a special man in red waiting for them. He was "magical and kind" (according to Penny). Penny talked her head off (surprise surprise) but Tom was a little shy. Santa was very clever and knew something about them both, although his rugby knowledge was abit rusty! We saw elf tracks in the snow on the walk back and Tom thinks he may have seen a little elf in the forest.

After some elf made pancakes (pronounced by Tom as the best ever) we sleighed back for tobogganing before lunch. (The iPad will know how to spell "tobogganing" by the end of this week as Tom has announced that he will be spending all his free time in this pursuit).

We made gingerbread biscuits and then the kids decorated the Xmas tree together and chatted about what they wanted for Xmas.

It was a traditional Finnish Xmas eve dinner. Tom and Kirky and I tried the herring. It was very vinegary but after the initial surprise tasted okay. After dinner we had another visit from Santa, arriving in his reindeer pulled sleigh. He gave a present to each family and cuddles for everyone.

After putting out a plate of food for Santa and the reindeer in our cabin, we all sank into bed, ready to dream about the magical day we had just had.
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