Monday, 12 December 2011

Nativity {Angel}

Today was Izzy's school Nativity! As she only started school in January, this was the first Nativity she'd been in. Today's performances were just for years R, 1 and 2. It was at the local parish church and there were 200 pupils there, all in costumes! It was a little bit slow getting the children in and out, but overall it all went really well. Reception and year 1 children got to choose what they wanted to be - either an angel, a shepherd, or a stable animal. Izzy, not surprisingly, wanted to be an angel, and luckily Liam's sister had given her an angel fancy dress costume last Christmas so we were sorted!

I took a few photos in the church before the start of the Nativity. I've cropped Izzy out so as not to show any of the other children - hope the photos don't come out too small!

I did have one photo where she was smiling nicely, but she was sitting too close to her friend to crop out, so you get these delightful expressions instead! As you can see, there was a sea of white and gold!! Izzy's costume was from Sainsburys last year, and the teacher was recommending Tesco for costumes this year - the supermarkets have obviously cottoned on to the need for Nativity costumes!

The first performance of the day was at 1.30pm. I took Toby along to it, and also met my Granny and Grandpa there. Afterwards, you could collect your child from the church, so they got to finish about an hour early. I took Izzy shopping as she wanted to buy her teacher a Christmas present. I think I probably spent a bit more on this year's present than I will in future years, but hey, it's Izzy's first Christmas at school and her teacher is fantastic. So as Izzy knew exactly what she wanted to get her, I let her get it:

A mug for her ("pink, because she always wears pink"), a mug for her 3 year-old daughter, hot chocolate powder and mini marshmallows. We do occasionally see Izzy's teacher's daughter, including yesterday at the party which is probably why she was fresh in Izzy's mind, and Izzy wanted them to be able to have hot chocolate on rainy days like we do! I thought it was a sweet idea so I didn't mind spending a little extra money, I just hope her teacher isn't embarrassed by the gift? I hope not, but it's so hard to know what is "right" to do - I'm still new to this school thing!!

We also got a tin of chocolates for all the teaching assistants and helpers. I was going to bake them something (last year, when Izzy's was in pre-school, we made all the staff peppermint creams I think) but then when we saw Izzy's teacher yesterday, she mentioned that they were hoping to get some tins of chocolates for the staffroom soon as they all needed an energy boost, so I figured I may as well get them what they wanted! Plus I have lots of baking to do this week anyway - with toddler group party, school party and my sister's 16th birthday - so I was happy to save myself some time!

Standard tin of chocs. Although it was surprisingly hard to find a tin of chocolates - everywhere was just selling biscuits!

Izzy wrote out cards for her teacher and class as well. We discussed what she wanted to write then I wrote it out and she copied it. She is getting so good at writing - I used to need to sound out all the letters for her as she'd lose her place on the page when she was trying to copy. But tonight she didn't want any help - in fact wanting me to leave her to it rather than hovering around watching her! While I wasn't looking, she added some "extra" writing on the envelope which I thought was so cute that I had to share it - overly proud "mummy" moment, sorry - indulge me!

"I love you vere mush and I lic you bein in my klus. Love Izzy" [translation if needed: I love you very much and I like you being in my class"]

Bless her! She's started writing me notes with her own guesses at spelling recently too. I always have to try to keep a straight face as she gets all embarrassed if I laugh, even though I explain it's only because I think she's so cute!! :)

Anyway, back to the Nativity. As well as the afternoon performance, there was an evening one at 6pm so that more parents could attend. Unfortunately Liam doesn't get home til gone 6.30pm so he couldn't see it, but my Mum, Sister and other Grandma went to watch instead. I was very thankful that my Mum was driving Izzy down this evening as the rain was pouring down - I wouldn't have liked to walk to the church in that! I took a quick photo of Izzy before she went. Photos in front of the Christmas tree are going to make regular appearances around her for the next few weeks I think!

She had such a good time being in the "Jesus play" as she calls it. The only rehearsed all together for the first time this morning, but they'd all been practising their songs for the last couple of weeks.

Do you remember being in your school Nativity? I remember being an angel, but apart from that I don't really have any memories of it - lots of tinsel was no doubt involved. I think my Mum made my costume from a plain white dress (sheet?) with lots of tinsel around all the edges!

If you are a parent, do you give your children's teachers gifts at Christmas? Or if you are a teacher, what sort of gifts do you receive? I am a little worried that what Izzy is giving is a bit too much. Presumably most parents wont have bought for the teacher's daughter! But she was so insistent that that was what she wanted to give her, that I hoped thought the teacher would prefer something with meaning behind it rather than lots of the same thing from everyone? Although this post has shown me that I feel the need to defend the gift...ah well, you live and learn, this is my first "school" Christmas! Last summer Izzy didn't give any gift to her teacher, as she was going to be in the same class in September anyway, and I felt so embarrassed not to be giving anything when most of the others brought gifts in on the last day of term! So it seems I can't win either way - I'll always feel I'm doing something wrong as a parent!! ;-)


  1. Izzy's costume is adorable! And she's such a thoughtful child as well (I was a self-centred little bugger at her age!) - I would be so very proud if I was her mother, and her little note to her friend is so sweet.

    I don't think you should be embarrassed about the gift - it is quite a lot but at the same time, good teachers are few and far between in my experience, and I don't see an issue with it. If other parents have a problem then they're just bitter and twisted old cynics, or resentful that they didn't think of something so thoughtful!

    Ugh, nativities. When I was little, it was just an excuse for the teachers to play favourites. My heart sank a bit until I read that the school were letting the younger kids choose what they wanted to 'be', which I think is lovely and saves chubby outcast children like me being cast as TREES. Scarred me for life, it did. Of course Izzy is beautiful anyway, so would naturally be an angel, but I'd have felt sorry for the kids like I was if the school hadn't let people pick!


  2. I love the idea that the children chose what they wanted to be- really lovely. It is my class play today (but as I am signed off I am missing it)- I hope they remember their dance. I saw a load of costumes in Sainsburys the other week- shepherds etc which is good!
    As for presents- those are perfect! I would say that as a teacher I expect nothing, but often get a lot and am grateful for anything at all- so thoughtful. My fave present last year was a book mark a child made for me- he drew me and him and some decorations, and his parents laminated it. I love it when the children choose things too- I got a nice hand wash/ handcream set and the girl said " my mum wanted to get you pink but I knew blue would be better"! In my school it is sometimes a bit of a competition- the parents club together and give vouchers sometimes (esp at the end of the year)-which is obviously really lovely but again the thing from that that I treasure is that the children all wrote a little note that one mum looped together with ribbon to make a little book. All their messages are so sweet and I must say what Izzy wrote on the envelope will be perfect and so sweet for her teacher. But equally some children/ parents do not give gifts and that is fine too. I don't think I ever did when I was little bit it seems a big thing now. Gosh I always ramble on so much in your comments! :)

  3. Izzy looks beautiful in her costume- an angel indeed!

  4. We have some very organised mums at the school who do 2 collections a year (both voluntary with a limit) and they get M&S vouchers for the teacher & assistants and a card with all the kids names they have done on stickers. Job done!

  5. My mum was a rception and year one teacher until last year (just retired) and I was always astounded by the vast amount of presents she got! People gave things that appeared to cost between £4 and £15, but mainly I'd estimate about £6-£7 I think. She usually got a variety of things ranging from standard boxes of chocolates to very posh boxes of chocs/ biscuits/ other deli-style things like chutneys/oil and vinegar sets, that sort of thing. Also, candles, smellies, books and stuff made by the children seemed frequent gifts! Mum liked the stuff made by the children best, or the more 'thoughtful' things- like yours, which is totally perfect, in my opinion! I would also add that when I was a baby/young child, the mummies of the children in my mum's class bought me LOADS of stuff, mainly toys, knitted outfits etc, and my mum prized them so much and found it so overwhelming that people thought of her daughter :)So your gift is adorable and she'll be so touched you thought of her little girl. Good call! xx

  6. ohhhh As a TA in a primary school, im am hoping for some christmas chocolate/ gifts i don't have to share in the staff room!

    thank you sooooooooooo much for my secret santa parcel... my mug is now on pride of place at school!


  7. Oh Jess, that's horrible that you were made to be a tree! No wonder you have bad memories of nativities :( It was definitely good that they got to choose their characters, although they ended up with loads of angels and shephards, hardly any stable animals!

    Maria - some of your presents sound lovely :) definitely agree that thoughtful ones are best. Hope your class' play went ok!

    Jemma - thanks! She's such a cutie, if I do say so myself! ;)

    Lara - that definitely sounds like the easy option! Although knowing Izzy, she'd still have wanted to get her beloved teacher something extra as well!! She ended up writing her 2 Christmas cards this year - one main one that went with the present, and then an extra small one when she wrote all her friends as "Miss xxx gave me a small Christmas card, so I want to give her one too" she is funny/odd!!! ;)

    Tori - thanks so much for your comment, that's really interesting to hear it from a teacher's daughter's point of view. Izzy's teacher is saving her present to open with her daughter, hope they both like it!

    Alice - I'm so glad your Secret Santa present finally arrived, and that you liked it! I thought that mug was cute - I love all of that slogan range! :)

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