All You Need is LOVE


David Jones department store is famous for its animated Christmas window displays. And rightly so. I’m only sorry I didn’t get out in the evening to capture these all lit up, but trust me, they are superb and every child in Sydney ought to be taken to look at them.

Guinea Pig
Guinea Pig

Ursula Dubosarsky the award-winning Sydney children’s author was thrilled when asked to write an original story with an Australian flavour for the windows this year.

“I was thinking kangaroos, wallabies and koalas,” Dubosarsky says, but she quickly came around to the idea of using a reindeer. “It suggested a nice story of the Australian experience, which is very often an immigrant experience. Apart from indigenous people, we all appeared here from other cultures.”

Guinea Pig
Guinea Pig

Dubosarsky took home the toy reindeer to use for inspiration, as she often does. “You get a bit more personality from a toy. You know how it is, you think your teddy bear is talking to you,” she says. “I still use that technique, so I sat there with the reindeer.”

The tale he told her, Reindeer’s Christmas Surprise, was about visiting all his animal friends with presents, before getting a lovely surprise himself at the end of the story.


 Happy Christmas Everybody…!

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I have lived in the UK for most of my life, but when young I definitely had wanderlust and even ended up living in South Africa for several years which was a wonderful experience. I now look forward to a long and leisurely retirement doing what I like most - gardening, photography, walking and travelling.

26 thoughts on “All You Need is LOVE”

    1. I have no objections to Christmas for children and these windows are spectacular! It’s all the associated commercialism and greed that gets to me – why oh why do we put up with it? A return to a traditional, simple celebration is needed. But I’m not optimistic…

      …an orange, a red apple, nuts and gold pennies in a sock anyone?

  1. Happy Christmas to you Jude! I wish I could pop over to have a look at these fabulous windows. Children and adults alike must be smiling masses gazing at this.
    I have been thinking of you and your family as the tragic news in Sydney came to us. Hoping all are safe and well.

    1. Thanks Sue 🙂 They are magical windows and animated too so I can’t show you how wonderful they are. I was entranced and I am an old cynic where Christmas is concerned! Thanks for thinking of us, all’s well, even though I was in the city on Monday! You never know what’s going to happen Sue, so live every day to the full (which I know you do). Having lived with IRA threats and also in South Africa I’ve sort of grown up with these sorts of things happening, so not as much of a shock to me as it was to many Australians who have not experienced this before. And I hope they never have to again.

  2. You minded me about the magic caverns and Christmas windows of my childhood. I love the idea of commissioning a story. Enjoy the season back in the Northern Hemisphere. I’ve loved your down-under posts. Thank you for many pleasures during the year.

    1. I’d have liked to have seen her ideas about using Australian animals – I do think that it is time for Australians to create their own special Christmas traditions. Those from the ‘old world’ no longer seem very appropriate. In fact I’d be so bold as to suggest moving it to July 😉

  3. Only the gods know how much more is in your data files, dear Jude, from your trip to the southern hemisphere … and if there IS more, we shall be joyous.
    It was simply lovely to meet you, and talk with you; and you are now in my heart.

    1. Oh, there is plenty more M-R once I sort myself out. And it was a real pleasure to meet up with you again. Goodness knows when I’ll be over next and something tells me you will not be visiting the UK 🙂 Take care my friend xx

  4. Oh I am so glad you have shown us those windows Jude, they are truly magical. Last year I just loved watching all the children with wonder and joy in their eyes. It is almost worth flying up to Sydney just for that experience.

    But I am with you on the over commercialism of Christmas. Apple, orange and colouring pencils with a colouring book in the stocking, family get togethers and playing charades, sing-songs round the piano. and the special dinner with coins in the Pudding… Oh happy days…

    We do have Christmas in July over here, mainly encouraged by the restaurant trade, but it is fuelled by big business trying to find another reason to make us spend our money…

    But despite my cynical outlook I do still love the time spent with the grandchildren at this time of the year. I guess you will be back home by now Jude I have enjoyed seeing Australia and NZ through your photos and experiences.
    Keep warm and have a lovely time back home.

    1. Consumerism is insidious – spend, spend, spend on goods that more than often are unnecessary. I used to enjoy Christmas when my children were small, but I had very little money so they mainly had a stocking, one main present and clothing! We still had a good time. It seems every year now that my grandchildren have presents that get more and more expensive. Crazy!

      There will be a few more posts from the southern hemisphere – an excuse to indulge in those sunny days again 🙂

      1. My children had similar Christmases Jude. I made an effort but I must admit I struggle to feel the spirit in this heat, I’m always pleased when it is all over and we can go back to normal. Maybe we should start a “simplify Christmas” movement.
        I will look forward to more of your Aussie experiences.

  5. These window displays are fantastic. Makes me feel like a kid again. Wish we could enjoy and feast our eyes without feeling the stress of spending, spending. I wish, as well, we could go back to basics. When I see what my daughter and son-in-law spend on my granddaughters, it makes my teeth ache.

    Merry Christmas to YOU and thanks for the breathtaking photos of that lovely shop.

    1. Thank you Tess – I know what you mean re: grandchildren. I wouldn’t mind so much, but a lot of the time they aren’t really grateful. They just expect to get what they want! I’m sure we cannot continue this way. And I’m glad you like the windows – now they ARE special 🙂

      1. I heard a commercial a couple of weeks ago that made me see RED.
        Somewhere in the middle of it, the words were something along the lines,”Give them what what they expect and more.”

        Are YOU kidding? Give them what they want / expect / and more? What? Something is more than WRONG with this commercial. I intend to do some research.

        1. Pommepal suggests we ought to start a campaign to “Simplify Christmas” – I think a lot of our generation would agree that consumerism has gone too far!

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