Thursday, 13 December 2012

Christmas Traditions Part 2 - The New

I was overwhelmed by the response to yesterday's Traditions post - thank you all so much for your lovely comments!

As you may have gathered, I love me some good ol' traditions and I've started a few of my own over the years. Some are nostalgic and hark back to family Christmasses gone by but some are brand new and I like to think there will be new ones added over the coming years too

In the lead up to the big day I like to call my sister often and leave voicemails of our favourite Christmas song - 'Do They Know It's Christmas' by the original Band Aid - at top volume! I always have a poinsettia in the house because my mum always did and I still decorate the tree with a roaring fire on the go whilst listening to Christmas songs. I like to make the house feel as festive as possible - I swap out my usual plug in air fresheners for the spiced apple scented ones and always have lots of tealights and scented candles around the house. Last year I was mad about Yankee Candle's Christmas Cupcake but this year it's The White Company's Winter Candle that I keep reaching for, it's just gorgeous.

I always wrap my presents whilst listening to Christmas songs, drinking mulled wine and eating a mince pie. I love mince pies, I make my own mincemeat (recipe here) and these little devils are mostly to blame for the weight I will put on this month. Food plays a big part in my Christmas traditions, I always do my turkey the Nigella way and I bake her Christmas Morning Muffins (recipe to come!) for breakfast on the big day. I can't stand Christmas pudding or cake but we more than make up for the lack of them with other desserts. Last year's Pecan Toffee Roulade was a big hit but my Pecan Pie was a bit of a damp squib (it had a soggy bottom!)

I like to get in the festive mood by watching as many Christmas films as I can. I always cry too, I'm such a wuss! Love Actually and Elf are my favourites but a few years ago I bought 'Clue' for my sister as a bit of a joke - it was a film we watched as kids. Re-watching it with our partners all these years later we realised we knew pretty much every line. Plus it's absolutely hilarious, even more so now it's so dated so we all laughed ourselves silly. Possibly something to do with all the alcohol we'd drunk I suppose. Either way, it's now become a Christmas tradition despite the fact that it's not a Christmas film, so it will no doubt get some airtime on the big day

My best friend Liz and I like to fit in a visit to Chester in December. We go as close to Christmas as we can, so that all our Christmas shopping is done and we can just soak up the festive atmosphere, drink mulled wine and buy treats for ourselves! We also get up super early on Christmas Eve and queue outside M&S with all the other nutters, eating McDonald's breakfasts and waiting for them to open so we can have first pick of their side dishes, sauces, puddings, biscuits etc.

On the big day itself, Matt and I usually open our presents in bed, have a cup of tea and aforementioned breakfast muffins, then wrap up warm and take the dogs out for a Christmas walk. Us 'kids' do Secret Santa for us and our partners so that everyone gets a present and no one goes bankrupt. We all get together and swap presents on Christmas or Boxing Day, whilst eating and drinking like it's going out of fashion

Christmas afternoon is about lounging around, eating, drinking and playing games or watching Christmas TV. This year I'm going to start a new tradition - watching the Queen's Speech. I hadn't realised what a Royalist I was until the Royal Wedding last year. Turns out I love the Royals! So we'll all be tuning in at 3pm. My house, my rules!

This year we'll be meeting up with the whole family at my sister's house in the morning to open presents together, before Kay, her fiance Kieran and my nephew Finley Joe come to us for dinner and to stay the night. It's going to be a busy day but I'm pleased that I'll get to see everyone that's important to me AND I'll get to spend plenty of time at home as we won't be living here next year. Dinner will be a laidback affair with lots of alcohol being consumed along the way and we'll probably spend the bulk of the day eating. Luckily I know everyone will muck in and help. And we have a dishwasher, thank goodness :-)

Will you be starting any Christmas traditions this year?


  1. I also have to watch Elf, every year without fail. We also have a tradition as a family of having boiled eggs and toast for breakfast, so i'll be carrying on that tradition with my future family I'm sure! P.S - looking forward to your mincemeat recipe, I want to make my own mince pies this year so it'll come in handy!

  2. I love how you're making new traditions as well as keeping the old (: Especially like your Band Aid singing tradition - just reminds me of Gavin and Stacey! Looking forward to all your recipes too, I need inspiration (: xx

  3. Watched Elf last night it's officially Christmas!!! Lovely post xx

  4. I love al your traditions, they are so cheerful and I may have to pinch the one about singing down the phone haha :). I usually love this time of year but unfortunately I have a super busy January with A level exams, mock exams and university interviews. Hopefully, next year I will be able to celebrate Christmas properly. Lovely post as always :) xx

  5. Great traditions! We always have porridge, which sounds boring I know for breakfast but I make it with milk, a splash of cream, some berries, a drizzle of maple syrup and brown sugar. Only day of the year we eat it like this, and we wash it down with bucks fizz. Oh God now I sound like a lush :O Breakfast on Christmas day is a belated affair, more like brunch and I don't make a habit of having alcohol at breakfast normally honest ;)

  6. Scrambled egg, smoked salmon and prosecco for me. Normally Champagne but I'm on an economy drive this year :-) I watched Elf last week and it finally got me in the Christmas spirit (I seemed to have misplaced it somewhere) See you in the M&S queue. Sausage and egg McMuffin or bacon & egg McMuffin, decisions decisions xx


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