Gone is the saying ‘kids should be seen and not heard’. On the weekend 23-25 November, Foothold was taken over by 44 children (ranging from 2 years to teenagers), some parents and lots of grandparents. From Friday morning campers started arriving, Hikers Haven was fully booked and then several families came early on Sunday morning for the arrival of Father Christmas. There was noise galore with so much anticipation.
Activities started about lunch time on Saturday with icing the cup-cakes, always a popular start to events. A three legged trail, block building, block dominoes, getting balls through an elephant’s trunk (which looked more like a snake hanging in the tree to start with), other ball games – all organised to keep the children occupied whilst grannies/grandpas relaxed. A storm was brewing so late afternoon on Saturday, the walk to see whether or not Santa could be found, started a little earlier. Just as well because as everybody arrived back at Hikers Haven the heavens opened with lots of thunder and lightning and heavy rain. The kids were happy as Santa had left them ‘goodie’ bags hanging in the trees. These bags were filled with a bouncy ball, whistle, torch, magnifying glass, transfers and a few sweets. Once the rain had stopped, braai fires were lit and the camaraderie of the evening began. Clouds covered the almost full moon but once it was out it lit up the mountain, a beautiful sight.
Sunday morning dawned with a very early awakening from the children as the anticipation was evident with the talk of Santa’s arrival. Neo very kindly decorated not only the girls’ faces but many of the boys wished to be included as well. Just after eight, Captain Happiness and his crew led the children, some parents as well as grandparents on a walk in search of this special person dressed in red. Glimpses of him were spotted by the children so the excitement was on as they chased after him. Back at Foothold Santa was settled in next to the decorated Christmas tree with all the presents around him. The children sat down in front of him waiting for their names to be called – one or two were a little shy to sit on Santa’s lap!! Gifts were opened with awe, thereafter a treat of jelly and custard, not only for the children but many grandparents as well.
It was then time to pack up and head for home with some weary but happy little ones and old folks too. Thanks go to: Ann Kenny, Angela Raine, Mark Eifler, Alan Chater, Neo, Kim Donnelly and all those who helped in whatever way they could, washing and stacking away of dishes, cleaning the braais and tidying up after events.
A truly magical weekend for all the children but a very enjoyable one for parents and grandparents. See you next year on the last weekend of November for the JHC’s annual children’s Christmas party held at Foothold.