So its nearly time for the tree to come down from the attic, the lights to be detangled and the spirit of Christmas to take over the house. I really do love this time of year and one thing in particular is all the traditions that come with it. As a child you often don’t realise just how special some of these things, that seems a little silly at the time, actually are! Before I had the children I used to attend Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve however with little ones in tow that isn’t so practical anymore. We do however strive to keep up as many traditions as we can and also create some new ones!
So I’m going to share with you some of our Christmas Traditions and maybe it will inspire you to start some new ones too!
- Decorating the Tree – This is definitely my most selfish tradition…. only Mummy is allowed to dress the main trees. You see the problem is I appear to suffer with the seasonal “illness” of so called “Perfect Ornament Placement Disorder” meaning that I deem no one else capable of decorating the main trees to the perfect standards I expect and love. No little mittens shall be getting involved with the precious glass ornaments here! Now YES this is SELFISH and YES Christmas is meant to be all about the children and in every other way it is but please don’t despair at me yet! I have solved the unfairness of the “P.O.P.D” issue by providing each child with their very own 2ft tree that they can decorate in any way they see fit and Mummy won’t get involved (promise!) unless they ask for help of course!
This tree dressing tradition has been ongoing ever since I got my own home and it’s one that sadly for anyone else is not going change anytime soon! #sorrynotsorry !
- Miniature Village – This tradition was started by my Auntie Ann who adored Christmas just as much if not more so than I do. Her house was always filled to the brim with Christmas decorations and her Christmas Village scene was always amazing! I began my collection when I got my own home and now have amassed rather a large amount of Lilliput lane cottages. I love creating my Christmas Village and I try to make it different each year. This is also a very important tradition I would like in time to pass on to my children.
- A New Bauble/Decoration – This is a Tradition that started between my Mother and I when I got my own house. We buy each other a new tree/Christmas decoration every year, the challenge is generally trying to find something to fit our strict colour schemes! (I do believe Mother has the same “P.O.P.D” as me but she just isn’t as reactive as I am!)
I really love this tradition because I just love bauble/decoration shopping, and this gives me the perfect excuse to usually find some more for us too! Over the past few years I have started buying my eldest a decoration each year for his tree too and I hope in time he will also continue on this tradition. Georges 1st Christmas will see him receive his own special tree and 1st Christmas Bauble which I had handmade especially for us by Dudley & Roo.
- Chocolate Tubs/Tins – So this is a special and very dear tradition to me, one I remember as a child and one I am making sure my children will always continue. My Grandad George started this tradition and it is now impossible for me to not do it! Roses or Quality Street it doesn’t matter which but it has to be the big round/hexagonal tubs.
So the tradition goes that you take the tub of sweets and before anyone is allowed to eat a single chocolate you have to tip the entire contents out onto a table or better still the floor and sort them into their different varieties. Once you’ve sorted them only then can you select only 3 chocolates you would like to eat. Once you’ve made your choices you then have to mix all the other chocolates back up and put them back in the tub ready for next time.
Now I’m almost certain Grandad made this up just so I wouldn’t sit there eating all the sweeties but I’m so very pleased he did. It is one of my fondest memories of him and of family Christmases when I was young. It is so important to me hat this is done each time you open the sweets tub in our house and regardless of if you’re guest or not you’ll be obliged to join in too!
- Chocolate Gold Coins – This is another Grandad tradition, when I was little he used to hide chocolate gold coins all about my Mum & Dads house when he came to visit so I could go off and find them! Such a nice little treat to do when visiting friends or family with young children around Christmas time (just be careful if they have dogs that they are shut out or that the chocolate is safely out of their reach and of course ask Mum & Dads permission first!)
- Films – Ok so this is a bit more of a vague tradition but over the Christmas period I will always watch all the Harry Potter films and The Polar Express even if the kids aren’t interested!
- Christmas Eve – So far we’ve stuck to the fairly traditional plate with a Carrot for the Reindeer with a Mince Pie and Schooner of Port for Santa (as rumour has it Santa prefers Port to Whiskey if you know what I mean, wink wink). We also hang up Santa’s special key and some years ago we also left Sparkly Reindeer food outside too (although at the time we didn’t realise just how harmful those glittery mixes were so we’ll definitely be searching for an Eco wildlife friendly version in future!). Now unfortunately Santa was a bit heavy handed a few years ago and broke his special key to our house so this year we had Dudley& Roo make us a lovely new one that we hope Santa will look after a bit better!
This year we are looking into doing Christmas Eve Boxes as this seems to be a really sweet idea that’s very on trend at the moment. I love the idea of the kiddies having a surprise little token pre-present and lovely new Christmas themed bedtime story with a mug of Hot Chocolate and maybe even some Lebkuchen, who knows the possibilities are endless! I found these lovely ones from Seth & Noah.
- Present Opening – Tradition for us is this is done first thing in the morning but not before 6:30am! I have two rules after that the first being; I get a coffee before we even start and the second; that before you move onto opening the next present you let me make a note of who bought you it otherwise the thank you cards can go VERY wrong!
- Crackers – In our house you simply can’t have Christmas dinner without pulling a cracker first! We try and go for ones with useful things inside rather than cheap plasticcy things that are of no use nor ornament! I’ll be on the look out for more Eco-friendly ones this year, maybe even some Charity ones. I found these Mistletoe ones at Graham & Green!
- The Food – Again we’ve always kept things very traditional and cooked either Turkey or Goose, my personal favourite being the Goose. I always make sure we buy local meat and last year ordered a fantastic Christmas Meat Hamper from Simpsons. No Christmas day meal is complete without a Christmas Pud despite no one else in the house liking it! I have to have one and I love the whole tradition of setting the Pud on fire and making a wish before the flame dies out. Granted this can go wrong in so many ways (and on the odd occasion it has, setting light to not only myself but the kitchen too!) but it simply wouldn’t be Christmas any other way!
- The Queens Speech – Now I am a Royalist and I am extremely proud of our English Heritage. For me the Queens Speech is the calm amongst the crazy of Christmas day and I love the tradition of everyone gathering together after dinner with a coffee or sherry and watching the Queen address the nation. Very humbling.
- Christmas Supper – Traditional Turkey and Mayonasie sandwiches! Nothing else will do!
So those are just a few of our families traditions, if you’ve got an interesting family Christmas tradition please let me know!