This past week or so we've been trying to get ourselves in the mood for Christmas and check some things off our Christmas Bucket List!
A few weeks ago we booked ourselves on to the Polar Express train ride at Dartmoor Railway here in Devon!
We had been thinking about booking it last year but decided that Tyne was probably too little to appreciate it, so instead we saved it for this year and I'm so glad we did as he is now REALLY in to trains!
We told him we were going to see some "steamies" (He's a big Thomas fan!) and he was delighted - he fell asleep in the car on the 1 hour journey to the railway station and I was amazed when he woke up upon our arrival and immediately asked "See Choo Choo?" - he doesn't usually remember things we've talked about when he's fallen asleep mid-journey so I knew the fact he'd remembered where we were going meant he was very excited!
We showed him the Polar Express out of the window and he was delighted - then I asked if he'd like to go on it - oh my goodness I have never seen him so excited!!
He squealed with delight and started trying to unstrap himself from his car seat to get out!
We queued up to have our tickets checked - I have to say the staff were so efficient, it was a very busy trip but they saw to everyone within a couple of minutes at most and kept everything running really smoothly.
If you're familiar with the book or movie The Polar Express, you'll know that its customary to wear pyjamas on board!
Jon & I were too whimpy for this (Although had I not been pregnant, I would have worn mine!) but Tyne was kitted out in his favourite Thomas PJs and Dressing Gown!
We had a little browse in the gift shop and then took our seats on board.
The staff were brilliant right from the start - everyone was in character straight away!
Tyne's golden ticket was punched with his initial, and off we went in search of The North Pole!
Not long after we set off, we were served Hot chocolate and cookies - along with a chorus of the "hot chocolate" song from the movie with the all singing all dancing chefs of course!
The conductor and dancing chefs were brilliant, and really kept the excitement up leading the children in christmas songs throughout the journey.
Soon we reached the North Pole....
I wasn't sure what to expect but what we saw brought a tear to my eye!
Out of the window we saw buildings all illuminated, a huge Christmas tree and a gigantic santa sack filled with gifts - along with 3 real life elves waving to us!
Santa got on board and spoke to each child individually - Tyne was DELIGHTED to see him and kept squealing his name and trying to run after him when his turn was over!
I have to say, this Santa was by far the best one we've seen so far - he looked very realistic and had so much character and so much time for the children! Tyne was eager to point out his Thomas PJs to Santa and was delighted when Santa knew all the names of his favourite engines and told him he was close friends with Thomas!
Santa gave each child a little silver bell engraved with "The Polar Express" and told them all to ring it on Christmas Eve when they were ready for his visit!
After Santa left the train, we realised a naughty elf had stowed away with us from the North Pole - Tyne was besotted with her as she did headstands and various acrobatics throughout the carriage while leading us all in Christmas carols for the journey back home!
Everything about our journey aboard The Polar Express was magical, and we can't wait to book again for next year!
Even the platform at the station was festive, with the Polar Express staff performing songs complete with their own instruments in between train rides!
We also had some other festive trips out this week, including a visit to the local German Christmas Market where Tyne had a great time exploring the stalls and decorations, sharing a waffle with Daddy, going on some rides, and taking the Christmas Express land train to visit Santa's reindeer!
And we headed along to a little Christmas party organised by a local church group for children, where he had a great time dancing away with his cousins and rocking his Santa outfit!
We've had a lot of fun getting ourselves in to the festive spirit!
Only 2 more sleeps to go!
To have a look at Tyne's visit to Santa, please check out the Vlog below!
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