Winter Festival and The Royal Deeside Railway

One day this week during school pick up, Brooks, Mia and I were walking to our car next to one of his little friends from class. Once they’d passed, I asked Brooks if he knew where they were from – they didn’t have Scottish accents.

Brooks said, “Oh I think he’s from Scotland.”

I said, “What makes you say that?”

“Well he says toilet instead of restroom. That must mean that he’s from Scotland.”

Hehehehe It’s so funny to learn about the things that stick with him!

The planning of our weekend events were all on me this week. I can’t say that I hit a home run with them but the kids seemed to enjoy the brief experiences.

Saturday afternoon we drove to Turriff, Aberdeenshire for what was advertised as a huge event – complete with ice skating, stalls of food, shopping, reindeer, a stage with performances ranging from singing, to highland dancing, to bagpipe playing, Santa’s Grotto (This is what everyone here calls going to see Santa – you don’t just go see him, you go to his grotto and every time I hear the word all I can think of is the grotto at the Playboy Mansion from that long forgotten show – The Girls Next Door-great seasonal feelings) and some kind of lighted forest walk.

Not exactly so.

The ice skating rink was not so much ice… more like 18 in x 18 in square tiles that were slick from the “snow” that was sprayed every 5 minutes or so. Brooks is the only one of us that even bothered with skates and we proceeded to bump into everyone else on the 20 ft x 20 ft rink every time the “snow” sprayed and all the kids dove towards the one corner where the little flurries of soap bubbles would fall on you.

The only time Mia was really happy the whole time. She ran away from us and was watching the snow.
Trying to get the little turkey to smile. It was a no go. She was not pleased about all the people milling about that were up in her space. Someone even had the audacity to use the penguin she was cleaning to help them skate.
Sweet Brooks loved the soap/snow.
Brooks and Brett trying to skate on tile.

There were a couple of food stalls and everything smelled wonderful. However, the only thing we could get was some questionable coffee because the lines were so. damn. long. The line for Santa’s Grotto was probably 75 people deep!

We set off on the lighted forest path but realized that it just took you away from the festivities. We didn’t really see any reason to go back, so we didn’t. Instead we raced into town and had a cozy dinner at Cognito Deli and sampled nearly every meat and cheese they have.


Sunday we had tickets for the Royal Deeside Railway – a steam train – to see Santa. It was a riveting one mile journey that ran alongside the River Dee. We probably hit speeds of up to 5 mph. The kids LOVED it though. People came by with snacks and drinks for the kids and coffee and mince pies for the adults. If they also gave a little whiskey with the coffee I think things might have been a bit more fun. We sang Christmas carols and Santa came by with a gift for each kiddo on the train. Brooks was in awe of him. Mia thought he was great fun as long as he was at the other side of the train. As soon as he sat down next to her she crawled into my lap and hid her head.


Push head


The big guy and his reindeer.


Brooks and Skinny Santa with a questionable beard

Sadly, I think little bit is getting a cold. Not too bad considering she’s been going to nursery for over 6 weeks now. I don’t even think she got it from there! I think she got it from her brother! Wish us a restful week!


  1. Sartenada says:

    Hello. This is a very lovely post. It was interesting to see how children enjoy. In Finland families have free reindeer rides in Oulu in February and children enjoy:

    Winter fun for children1.

    Winter fun for children2.

    Happy new week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my goodness! That looks AMAZING!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sartenada says:

        I am glad that You loved my posts.


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