Rail travel is the easiest way to get around

but not always the best on your wallet. Of course, neither is hiring a car. But when you have 3 bags full of presents, 3 suitcases, bedding and an air mattress, really the latter is the best way to get around.

And while you are slicing through the countryside on your speedy train heading up to your family’s home for the holidays, so are we – but our view is completely different.

Here are a few shots out the window of our fancy Ford Focus. We really enjoyed taking the B roads, but I asure you, the photographs did not due the scenery justice at all. The countryside of Leicestershire is stunning. Rolling hills, wide vistas and the very English narrow country lane…

So we’ve made the drive, marvelled at the countryside and then when we arrived, proceded to get right happy on wine and we had ourselves some Christmas Carole Karaoke. All photos of family members have been archived so there is no evidence of said over-merriment.

Here are some other festive Christmas Eve photos.

And here is Bailey, who passed away this past week. Bless.

Christmas itself was full of fantastic food. I am lucky to have in-laws who love their sauces and interesting meats. There was venison, hollandaise and truffles… not necessarily together!

Dinner set complete with name cards…

… and homemade bread…

… and a pancetta wrapped monkfish starter…

And the hungriest of all, Walt and Bailey…

And after a Christmas pudding, we all opened presents and watched a very special Strictly Come Dancing. Early to bed as we were off to Birmingham for a Boxing Day party. Whoever said holidays were relaxing and quiet didn’t have this much fun!

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