Christmas in “Narnia”

Russet leaves for a russet lady!

Russet leaves for a russet lady!

My first surprise of the day.  Lisa swept towards me- “Mum, I’m here!”  The flowing locks were a dazzling tangerine orange.  “It was just time for a change. I was tired of the red!”  And it suited her.  She looked radiant and happy- a look I love to see.

The venue?  Chatsworth House in the beautiful Peak District.  Every year this glorious home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire is themed for Christmas. This year it’s “Narnia”and totally irresistible.  My daughter has been a lifelong fan of the book by C.S. Lewis and the numerous films, so I planned a Christmas treat, for both of us. It’s quite a distance from home and I’ve never been inside the house before.  For Lisa it was about an hour’s drive from Nottingham.  Me- I hopped on the coach!  After the hugs and kisses it was off to see the spectacular grounds.

Sumptuous afternoon tea next, then the best bit!  Come with me to “Narnia”.

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There were dressing-up clothes for children in some areas, and of course, Lisa couldn’t resist!  A Christmas Trail, finding cuddly Aslans and clues along the way, was also meant to keep the children happy.  Guess who else enjoyed it?

Are you ready to be scared yet?  It’s time for the witch!

I was joking- she's much too pretty to be scarey!

I was joking- she’s much too pretty to be scarey!

Note the small Aslan, keeping her company.  Another clue for the Christmas Trail.  But now for the really sad part!

He's still breathing!  It's going to be ok.

He’s still breathing!  It’s going to be ok.

Time for a feast!

Time for a celebratory feast!

All's well that ends well!

All’s well that ends well!

I hope you enjoyed my little trip to Narnia.  It was the best Christmas present I could ever have asked for.  And now, I really must get on with my Christmas preparations.  I haven’t even bought the tree yet!  But I’ve made a list.

Chatsworth House is the most delightful setting and I will be posting more about the house and gardens.  If you are anywhere in the vicinity, “Narnia” will be available till 23rd December.  The link will give you directions.  I can absolutely recommend it.


      1. I bet she did! I would have, too – would have felt like back in the childhood where everything had suddenly become real. 🙂
        Your company has always been a pleasure, Jo! Happy New Year!

  1. Wow, thanks for linking back to here, such a lovely post Jo. I’d love to have seen it all decked out at Narnia! I go to our local NT Killerton, but while the grounds are large the house is a much smaller one. They still do a lovely job thought, this year the theme was Nutcracker.

    1. I can imagine that being really beautiful, Gilly 🙂 It was Alice at Chatsworth this year and I would have loved to go, just to see Lisa, but Narnia was something special. A bit like the lady 🙂

  2. When I was 10, I spent a year in Australia with my family, while my Dad was an exchange pastor with a man from there. While there, I discovered “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.” I fell in love with the book! A couple of years later, I discovered that there was a whole series. Imagine my delight! To see it portrayed in that setting must have been spectacular. As usual, thanks for sharing.

  3. I’d love to visit Chatsworth some day and I feel I’ve had a magical visit through your post. Lisa looks stunning with her new hair and beautifully tailored outfit. She’s a classy lass and no mistake.

  4. Jo, your daughter reminds me of my best friend, she rocks the best hair colors! Also where did she get her outfit? I love having mom and daughter time with my mom too. Those grounds look amazing!

    1. Hi Julia 🙂 Thanks for the nice comments- yes, it’s a beautiful place. Lisa makes her own clothes. At 6′ tall it’s the easiest option and she started young. You must not have seen the post about her wedding in February? She made her Victorian dress and the groom’s jacket.

      1. I might have visited if it was closer, but I don’t think I could face a 200 mile round trip on the a British motorway system at the moment. I’ve seen enough of the M42/M1 this year to last me a lifetime 😦
        Did you go there and back in a day?
        Mum has just been transferred to Ripon for rehab, but, yes, we will be popping up again soon, not sure whether for Christmas though.

      2. Maybe not! Wasn’t sure where you were at present. Yes, it was 3 and a half hours by coach each way, but worth it from my point of view. The big bonus was my daughter 🙂

  5. Stunning place … and a stunning young woman, your daughter … I remember when they filmed the Narnia films in Belfast – never heard about the books before. They used the studios .. not fare from the Titanic Center.
    What a fantastic adventure you to had together – just fantastic. Love the photo of the sleeping lion. And the top one with your daughter – that handbags of her’s are so fantastic. Colorful young woman in many ways.

  6. How fantastic! I would absolutely love this wonderful trip to Narnia! And the photo of Lisa and Aslan is wonderful! She’s a lovely young lady, Jo. I love her fiery hair color. I love her confidence. I’m so glad you share this lovely day with us. It is an amazing place!

  7. Narnia is just naturally a favourite with most children Jo. I can remember staying up half the night once, with a torch under the sheets. I was reading “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.” Of course knew I’d be in trouble if mum had spotted me so hence my little undercover strategy…but I just could not put the book down that night (around 8 years at the time I guess). If I was there I would most certainly love to go along.

  8. That was awesome 🙂 as my Mom’s health fails more and more I miss days such as you shared glad you had a wonderful time OH how I wish I could pull off ORANGE oh wait it was the color I started life with 🙂 maybe just maybe 🙂

  9. What an amazing exhibition! Loved the pics, and Cathy is quite right when she says that Lisa fits right in there. I would love to cuddle up to Aslan. He’s wonderful. 🙂 Pretty or not, I still find that witch very scary. 😯

  10. assolutamente stupefatta, piacevolmente, naturalmente! complimenti per la bella figlia che ti ha fatto da modella in questa gita quantomeno stravagante!
    e vai a comprare l’albero, he? io ne ho già addobbati due, uno nel salone e uno in giardino e poi tutte le lucette in giro…che sfacchinata, ha ha

    absolutely amazed and pleasantly, of course! congratulations for the beautiful daughter who brought you by shaping in this trip at least extravagant!
    and go buy the tree, he? I’ve already decorated two, one in the lounge and one in the garden and then all the glitters around … that drudgery, ha ha

      1. Doing my best and feeling a tremendous amount of pressure from everywhere. I work 12 hours a day and have more things to do after my work…..

      2. I know- and blogging is supposed to be for pleasure but it’s no good when everything else crowds in. I’ll be peaceful. Just shout if I can help 🙂

    1. It’s a really lovely place, Dallas, and the staff were all so welcoming. Next year it’s a Pride and Prejudice theme, which will be totally appropriate. 🙂 How’s Dad?

  11. What a great experience, Jo! I love doing special activities over Christmas time as well. How nice you got to share the activity with your daughter. The Narnia decorations look fantastic! Looking forward to reading more about the house and property!

    1. Last year I did “ice sculptures” in York, and a very special church in Whitby. One of my best memories was a Dickensian Festival in Grassington. There are so many Christmas things going on, and they don’t all have to cost money. This one was definitely special though. 🙂

  12. Lovely Christmas present! Chatsworth and Narnia and a wonderful mother/daughter day 🙂 Also love the hair, but I bet it’s high maintenance! Unless she is naturally ginger 😀
    Jude xx

    1. She’s brunette-ish, Jude, but has been red for so many years it’s hard to remember. In her early twenties she was a strawberry blonde. The “curly-wurlyness” of it is more of a challenge than the colour. 🙂

  13. Wow! Thanks so much for sharing this Christmas present with ME, Jo! I love it! I really wish I could just “hop on the coach” and visit this place, but your pictures and story are almost as nice as being there. Lisa fits right in at Chatsworth House, with her daring hair and black dress. I love that top picture of her with the hedges, as well as many more, especially “the hot house exotic” and “all’s well that ends well.” Where are you?? 🙂

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