#ComeAndPlay with ELC


Mummy says….’I have the most amazing memories of Christmas as a child, and am thrilled to be able to share them with you for the #ComeAndPlay campaign with the Early Learning Centre.

Come and Play with ELC

As a child, the excitement I felt on Christmas Eve was like no other. I can still feel it, if I close my eyes and think hard enough. It was actually a mixture of sheer excitement, fear and happiness. I wanted to cry and laugh at the same time.

I would go to bed quite early, and lie, unmoving in my bed, scared to open my eyes in case Santa saw me. It was the longest night of the year! I must have dozed off – eventually, and never woke until a decent 7am ish. My sister and I would look over the stair bannister to the tree at the bottom, and our pillow cases would be bulging with presents.

We would run shrieking into Mum and Dad – Dad would always ask ‘Has he been?’ and we would lug our pillow cases upstairs to their bedroom, as my Mum absolutely had to have a cup of tea before she could get out of bed!

It has been the biggest pleasure in my life to see my children all have this magical experience too. We are a very close family, and Christmas is our favourite time of year.

My children have always slept well – waking around 7am if not later. Last year, I had to wake Pickle up!

My teens tell me as they are older, that their experience of Christmas Eve as a young child was similar to mine!

I was so pleased to be asked to share my Christmas memories with the Early Learning Centre, and to receive a wonderful Thomas and Friends Wooden railway set for Pickle. He loves Thomas and Friends and we both love wooden toys. Seeing him playing with his fabulous train set brings back so many memories of me playing with my favourite toys – my first doll and her pram. I also have vivid memories of Santa bringing me my first Scalextric racing set, a Meccano set and my own train set too. How wonderful that Santa was clearly all about gender equality and toys, even in the 70’s!’

Come and Play with ELC Come and Play with ELC 2 Come and Play with ELC 3 Come and Play with ELC 4


Pickle says…’This is the first Christmas that I am really understanding who Santa is, and what he does. I am still a little confused as to HOW he does it – and I am currently asking Mummy at least a dozen questions a day about it all. Not that it matters really, I know that if I am on my best behaviour, I will get presents on Christmas Day. And all my family will be with me, we will have a lovely dinner together, and lots of fun.

I love listening to Mummy telling us about what Christmas was like when she was a little girl – and hearing from my big brother and sisters too. My eldest sister is twenty, so there are lots of memories to share. I love my Thomas and Friends Wooden Train Set and am asking Santa for some more trains to go with it.’

What was your most memorable Christmas toy as a child?

We were sent the wooden railway set to feature in this campaign blog post.


  1. Awww how nice that your kids have such wonderful memories and pickle is creating some now. My childhood memories include spending time with my mum in the kitchen for christmas eve baking up some treats.
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  2. I used to LOVE ELC as a child. The store was always so exciting to visit. Thomas was a good choice too, wooden train tracks are always so much fun!
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  3. I don’t have children so I’ve never been in there but the lego train set looks lovely. What a beautiful experience, to learn about santa and his travels around the world. Hope you have a fab christmas!

  4. Awh I love hearing about people’s Christmas memories! That train set looks amazing, I think my Nephew would love this in a couple of years! xo

  5. Lovely post, thanks for sharing it!

  6. Good question. I think it was my black doll, which was actually quite progressive for the 70s. Her and I went everywhere together till I lost her in the playground and my parents replaced her. She is still in my old room at my parents house. The second one that is.

  7. my son would love this his a huge thomas fan and i would never of thought of looking in ELC

  8. I have loads of memories from being a kid, but the most memorable toy would have had to be my toy kitchen as I’d always make my family plastic food and expect them to try and eat it x
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  9. I used to love ELC! I haven’t seen one for years though! Have a lovely Christmas! xo
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  10. Those Christmas memories are just magical, and I know Pickle is growing up wit the same. What a lovely track, it takes me back to my son’s Christmas’s. He loved Thomas
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  11. Christmas memories are awesome. It is something we can never repeat so each year has to be special.

  12. I loved my fisher price kitchen

  13. The Early Learning Centre is an excellent choice for ‘toys’ and the memories they will bring

  14. My most memorable Christmas toy as a child was a picnic set. It came in a cute little basket with teeny weeny teacups and saucers, a teapot and fake food! That was in the 60s, An uncle bought the set from overseas and no one I knew had anything quite like that! It was the envy of all my friends.
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