There are just 8 more days to go until Christmas day, and I’m still not feeling too festive. I’d have thought being at home around Christmas, and with my little boy would have left me exploding with Christmas joy. But for some reason, it’s just not arrived yet. I haven’t even watched any Christmas films yet! Partially because I’m so hooked on Grey’s Anatomy (and Dr McDreamy!) that whenever I have a few moments of spare time, I’m watching that! Luckily my friend is coming round tomorrow to sort that out. Everyone needs a Christmas movie day leading up to the big day.
Every family has their own traditions at Christmas time. Now that I have my own little family, it’s time for me and my husband to combine ours and set our own traditions.
At home, I really struggle with change. I hate it. I like things to be the way I’m used to, and you’ll have to really push me to change. I’m fairly (obsessively) routine oriented, and if someone asks me to deviate from my ‘norm’, it’s like asking me to kill a cat. It doesn’t happen. Although, now that I’m playing ‘grown up’, I am trying to be better.
So, when I was exposed to different ways of spending Christmas (i.e. Neals), I was horrified when I realised that I might actually have to get rid of some of my ways, to make way for his. Our Christmas’ are so different.
I thought I’d share a few traditions below:
When we were kids, we always got to open one present before bed on Christmas eve. Not big ones, but little ones. It got us really excited for the next day, and for Father Christmas to arrive.
My husband didn’t do this, instead their Christmas Eve tradition was having steak for dinner the night before. This is a tradition I like. Who doesn’t like steak?!
Christmas Eve also involved my cousin and I scouring through the latest Argos catalogue, and writing down all the things we wanted, and leaving it at the end of our beds for Santa. In hindsight, probably not the best idea. How can Santa (ahum, parents) get items from the list when only told them just before bed on Christmas Eve. Whoops!
FRY UP. Christmas morning isn’t the same, without a huge fry up and a glass of bucks fizz (gross, I don’t partake in the bucks fizz part. Orange juice for me, thanks).
Neal however, always had salmon and scrambled egg. Even grosser. I’m afraid that is one tradition that won’t be continuing…
Christmas stocking/presents under the tree/Father Christmas
The first thing we’d do is wake up (probably about 5am) and open the presents from Father Christmas. I know some have the presents under the tree as being from him, but ours were always in the stocking. We’d then go downstairs and open the presents from our family. There’d be little presents hiding in the tree branches also, that we’d open up later in the day, after dinner – when I was little, I genuinely believed the Christmas tree went out shopping during the night, and bought us presents.
Christmas Eve was always the hardest night to fall asleep. Santa only visits when you’re asleep, of course. So I always used to panic. I also used to worry that if we didn’t leave enough carrots for the reindeer, that they might try to eat me.
One year, I remember my cousin and I decided to try and trick Father Christmas. So we set up a plan to catch him, and take a photo of him. It was foolproof, really. We had string tied to the door handle, which was also tied to my cousins foot. So, when he opened the door to come into our room, my cousin would be awoken and would use the camera we left in her bed to take a photo of him. Genius, right?!
Maybe not… We woke the next morning and the presents were in our stockings at the end of the bed, the string still tied to the door handle. To this day, I’m still confused as to how that worked.
Games are a must for me! Particularly Pictionary. At least one round of Pictionary must be played each year. This is non negotiable.
Winchester Christmas market
This isn’t so much of a tradition. But the past 2 years, we have gone with our friends to the market. We never really buy anything, or spend much time looking at the stalls in great detail. But it’s just lovely. It’s so beautiful, and Christmassy. Especially when accompanied by good company, and of course, Christmas coffee (thank you, Starbucks for your beautiful Eggnog lattes).
I kind of feel that we have the chance to make our own traditions now. And although I’m very much stuck in my ways, it’s something that really excites me.
Next year, I’m totally trying the Elf on the Shelf thing. Super Christmassy, but I also think I could use it to my advantage when Dom gets older. Mwahahaha.
I read something recently about a Mum who changed her husbands name on her phone to Elf/Father Christmas, I can’t remember which. And he’d call every day to check the kids were being good. If not, the Mum would report back to Father Christmas, so the kids would behave really well to avoid being put on the dreaded Naughty List! This is definitely something I might try in the future!
Not so much of a tradition, but the most important part, of course, is family. My family don’t all live too close together, so it’s wonderful getting together and playing games, eating and generally just being merry! I’ve always stayed at my auntie’s house the night before, and we’ve spent the whole day there. The next day, I’d go and visit the rest of my family at my Nan and Grandad’s.
Christmas day to me is a chaotic, messy and fun. I’m not so into the structured, ‘no TV’ kind of day. In fact, I quite like to snuggle up with my cousins and watch our new DVDs and Christmas films. Christmas is not for being quiet, for me. It’s about lots of noise, lots of games, and most importantly, lots of family.
Do you have any Christmas traditions? I think it’s lovely to share these, as you never know, it could inspire someone! :)