My annual achievement – the December FMS Instagram challenge 

Every year I manage one thing – I complete one December Instagram challenge. Sophie’s Voice is multimedia but I especially love Instagram. Unfortunately nobody especially loves the Sophie’s Voice Instagram account. Not to worry, though – it means I have it all to myself. 

Day 1 of the December Instagram Challenge – ‘lunch’: prawns cooked in garlic butter with a little parsley thrown into the mix.


Day 2 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘I enjoy’: I enjoy spending time with my children.


Day 3 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘morning sky’: Liverpool dockline from south to north – cloaked in autumn mist. Many of my mornings start with this comforting blanket. It seemed sinister at first. Now it’s like a muffler over the city to me. The day starts more quietly and everyone goes more slowly…


Day 4 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘selfie’: modeling my youngest daughter’s Christmas present. It was just too tempting.


Day 5 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘beauty’: I always have seasonal nails! It’s a Sunday evening ritual. I like Rimmel London UK Precious Stones Nail Polish in Ruby Crush, £3.99. It’s Ms Christmas in a bottle.


Day 6 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘bookshelf’: Karl Lagerfeld recently revealed that he arranges his books horizontally on shelves. Personally I love the idea but, apart from the legend himself, I appear to be the only person.


Day 7 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘outside’: the walk to the corner shop to buy milk with my children this morning. They had Nutella on toast – don’t worry, everyone.


Day 8 of the Instagram challenge – ‘something red’: Christmas wreath on my neighbour’s door.


Day 9 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘joy is’: joy is watching 9 to 5 with friends. Released 36 years ago, it’s still just as funny and the punctuation of a piece of music with a typewriter is genius. Thank you Dolly, Jane and Lily for making my life a little bit happier.


Day 10 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘simple’: shopping for satsumas was the highlight of a day well spent with my eldest daughter. She’s very fussy!


Day 11 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘jump’: Ray Bradbury said: “Jump and you will find out how to unfold your wings as you fall”. I love to dive. It’s the closest I can feel to freedom.


Day 12 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘decoration’: the sets of Christmas tree decorations at Sophie’s Voice House. There are an awful lot of red stars for some reason…


Day 13 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘I hear’: I hear Nico singing These Days.


Day 14 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘fun’: like many mothers, sometimes I’m tempted to  drink in the day. I find that watching Cougar Town’s Ellie Torres do the same thing usually means that I can resist the urge.


Day 15 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘tree’: a modern take on the Christmas tree in my front room. Yes, we have the normal type too.


Day 16 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘breakfast’: un grand creme à Marseille. Sans enfants. Toujours sans enfants! 


Day 17 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘fruit’: purple figs. Almost too beautiful to eat and they smell so delicious.


Day 18 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘something green’: Fabergé cigarette case in green nephrite with gold chinoiserie detailing. Circa 1890.


Day 19 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘nature’: Sefton Park’s Palm House is a 3 tier dome conservatory designed and built by MacKenzie and Moncur. It opened in 1896. Henry Yates Thompson gave £10,000 to the city to fund construction. It is still stocked with some of the plants that were housed there at the opening. This is nature cultivated for science.


Day 20 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘three’: three matrioshki – one for each of my daughters and I – wete gifts from my bestfriend. They are a favourite toy for all of us!


Day 21 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘pop’: me and my Christmas wreath halo – in an homage to Tony O’Connell. I don’t look very saintly but I call this look ‘Mrs Claus goes to lunch’ – with the Tooth Fairy and Mother Nature, obviously.

Day 22 of the December Instagram challenge – ’tis the  season to’: ‘Tis the season to give…

Day 23 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘food’: I’m finally getting festive – and baking the one thing I always cock up because the girls wanted it. Now that’s the holiday spirit! Happy gingerbread, everybody. We’ve got stars for Hanukkah, hearts for glad tidings, bells to invite people to our happy house and some other random shape the nearly 3 year old (5 days to go) chose. This is only the fourth time that Hanukkah has overlapped with Christmas since 1900. If these biscuits are edible, it will be the first time I have achieved that feat in 41 years. It’s a time full of history! 


Day 24 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘something to be happy about’: playing Candy Land and Zingo with my kids.


Day 25 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘something new’: we now own a pony. I’m.only allowed to feed it apples, though! Merry Christmas, everyone. I hope Santa brought you everything you wanted.


Day 26 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘last thing I read’: my Christmas reading: Humans Of New York by Brandon Stanton and The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking.


Day 27 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘Super!’: I’m throwing a birthday party for a three year old tomorrow. Have to start work on channeling my inner Michelle Visage today. I’m throwing as much super at life as I can at the moment – the window of opportunity for sparkle and incessant glamour provided by the holidays is very short in reality.


Day 28 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘drink’: try a Blushing Mimosa. Make a jug, even. It’s just half a glass of sparkling white wine – who cares if it’s champagne when you’re going to adulterate it so much, anyway? – with a few drops of grenadine and pineapple and orange juice to top up the glass.


Day 29 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘happiness is’: happiness is fulfilling yourself. Not at the expense of other people – that would be selfish. Just find the balance…it’s possible. Hard but possible. 


Day 30 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘anything you like’: I like handbags…like this Musubi clutch. I like them a lot!


Day 31 of the December Instagram challenge – ‘celebration’: I’m celebrating a little success at the end of 2016. It’s easy thanks to the 2016 best nine project. 


And there we have it, dear friends – December in pictures. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and a happy, healthy new year. 

With love,

Sophie

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