There is huge excitement in our house, for the Late Late Toy Show this coming Friday night. For those of you who aren’t Irish, this heralds the official start of Christmas in the Emerald Isle. Resulting in the writing of millions of letters to Santa the following day. After a 3 hour frenzy of, basically toy adverts (with many of the toys not actually working on the night), interspersed with some seasonal entertainment. All delivered by exceptionally cute or talented children, presented by a Slimming World Santa with an inordinate selection of Christmas jumpers. For the people of Ireland, the phrase “one for everyone is the audience” is as synonymous with Christmas cheer as Jingle Bells.

One For Everyone in the Audience

I know it is still November, but we are now within touching distance of the advent calendars being opened. To get that spirit of Christmas going around your place of work/home/sports club etc, I would like to focus on your own top ten favourite Christmas childhood toys/presents………

  1. Life Size Baby Doll. Our Christmas tree was always put up beside the porch door, at the bottom of the stairs. So I soon as I reached the top of the stairs I had 13 steps to try and figure out what each present was under the wrapping paper. this one, i didn’t spot and it was the last one I opened, I put my hands right through the paper and into the Moses basket my baby doll came in. She used to sleep on my beanbag beside my bed every night.
  2. Blue, Yellow and Red Striped Roller Boots.
  3. Red Sony Cassette Walkman (google it if you are under 25). I am putting numbers 2 & 3 together as they arrived the same year. It was snowing outside, so i wasn’t allowed out to try my new roller boots, but as we were replacing the sitting room carpet the following January, I was allowed to skate up and down for ours. Only stopping to swap over the Walkman re-chargable batteries hourly.
  4. My Little Pony Walkie Talkies. These were actually attached by a wire, but they were still the bees knees as far as I was concerned. the fact, their range was only to the room next to m own, which meant, as an only child, I had no one else to talk on them, didn’t bother me one bit, just like now and talked and answered for myself.
  5. My Sindy Sand Buggy. I was always into Sindy rather than Barbie, I don’t even know if she is still going but my bright yellow sand buggy with the black stripes was the wheels to have, back in the day.
  6. Bright Red Double Cassette Ghetto Blaster. Just like the ones the cool kids in America, held up on their shoulders, whilst dancing at street parties. They obviously had lots of money for the enormous batteries it took to power them, I only had mine in my bedroom within 3 feet of the plug socket, so the cable would reach! With the option to record, as long as you remembered to press pay and record at the same time of course. Many a Sunday evening was whiled away pressing play/record at lightening speed to catch as much of the song, without the DJs voice on the top 40 countdown. Of course you had to have a copy of Smash Hits magazine too, so you could learn the words to the songs
  7. AHA Annual. It was 1987, absolutely every girl in my first year at secondary school got the same gift. We would all swoon over Morten, Mags and Pal those Norwegian gods – actually no one swooned over Pal, poor fella. I kissed a Norwegian bloke, years later at a college party, I remember thinking I was the coolest girl on the planet. Don’t fight it, you are currently tapping out the opening synthesiser notes of ‘Take on Me’ in your head right now!
  8. Care Bear. I had the pink one with the rainbow on her tummy. Her name was ‘Cheer’ and apparently she was a very happy bear. Care Bears made a bit of a comeback earlier this century, but it just wasn’t the same. my mum is right, you can’t enjoy it the second time around if you were there for the original.
  9. Rimmel Eyeliner and Mascara Set – I was 10 when I received this, from the very cool wife, of my Dad’s cousin. She had a spiral perm and leg warmers, and I wanted to be her. I thought just owning the make up, made me a woman. It came in a set of three, with cobalt blue, purple and turquoise eyeliner and matching mascara – don’t judge, it was the 8Os!
  10. Signed Photograph of SJP . Ok, I was 30 when I received this gift, but it was my first Christmas present from Saoirse (aged 17 days old). Expertly selected by my husband Mick, who knows I am a huge fan of Sarah Jessica Parker and had watched seasons 1-5 of Sex And The City (again) whilst waiting for Saoirse to arrive – she was 3 days earlier so I had to wait until after she was born to watch season 6. Best Present EVER!

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