Yesterday was my birthday. What did I do? I went to see Father Christmas. Now, I realise this sounds a little bit strange. A thirty-something-year-old going to see Father Christmas, but I have an excuse. It was also the day my dad had booked to take my nephews to the Christmas event at Paulton’s Park.

Consequently, my sister and her family, and my dad, my stepmother, and me all tottered off to Hampshire to give the little ones a treat.

What’s up with the pigs? Well, Paulton’s Park has a shiny new section, and it’s devoted to Peppa Pig – a British TV programme that has gone viral in terms of books, toys, and now, even its own theme park.

Needless to say, my nephews loved it. All the places from the television programme were there: Windy Castle, Peppa’s house, the school, and even some muddy puddles (though they weren’t open – it’s November, after all). Peppa Pig World is a beautiful, colourful creation, with rides that even the very little can go on and enjoy, while having enough room for the slightly larger of us.

As for the Christmas Wonderland, the queue took visitors though a snowy walkway, accompanied by singing yetis, reindeer, and elves in a gorgeous animatronic display. For the children, this was a great way to keep them occupied while they were waiting to see a bloke in a red suit.

My older nephew was keen to tell Father Christmas all about what he wanted for that illustrious holiday, while my younger one hung back a bit, deciding at the last moment that he was actually shy. When it came to the present though, the shyness evaporated, as if by magic ;).

I can’t remember visiting many Christmas grottos, but I think this was done exceptionally well. It was personal for each child (they were called by name), and they were each given a gift suitable for their age group. At any rate, they had fun.

This was how I spent my birthday, but it was actually a first for me. When I was growing up, theme parks didn’t do this sort of thing, and weren’t open in the winter months.  So, this was the first time I’d been to a theme park on my birthday! To top it off, my sister made me a cake, so it was also the first time, in a long while, I got to blow out some candles :).

Can you remember any birthdays with a difference? Or have you been to any Christmas displays that stood out?