26 Dec 2013

12 Things that Make Our Christmas

Christmas! A magical, most wonderful time of the year. When strangers smile at you, shop assistants chat with you and there is a mad rush to squeeze into that last parking space at the supermarket. A time when there is guilt-free binge eating. Not to mention drinking. When neighbours pop round with cards and Santa pops up in his grotto in most every town centre.

We love Christmas in the C household. We really do. More so since little J was born and it has taken on a whole new feel. It is less about cosy nights on the sofa snuggling up with warm mulled wine. It is more about shiny baubles, presents, twinkling fairy lights and chocolate reindeer with or without red noses. All about stirring the Christmas pudding and Santa getting stuck up the chimney going, "Achoo, achoo, achoo!" 

The last couple of years since having J, the focus has been on a family Christmas, our family Christmas. We are hoping to have our own traditions and build some beautiful, happy memories for J to cherish when he is no longer a little boy running circles around me as we gear up for a jolly festive season.

Here are 12 things that I hope will herald the advent of Christmas in our home year after year.

1) Santa 
Everything to do with good old Papa Noel gets us all excited in the C house.  J wanders around the house, hands on hips, humming Santa songs and going, "Ho, ho, ho." He has a little Santa doll that comes out of storage at the beginning of December and keeps him company all through the festive season. Most of all, we love putting on our bright red Santa hats everywhere we go.
J will outgrow the legend of Father Christmas, but our hats will always get us in the spirit of things every Christmas.

2) Fairy lights  
Nothing adds cheer to cold, dark winter evenings like shiny bright white fairy lights twinkling on bare branches of withered old trees. Or evergreens, for that matter. There are red, green, yellow and blue lights, but none can outshine a sparkling string of whites when it comes to transforming a space into a magical winter wonderland. There is an almost childlike joy in walking down a street bedecked with fairy lights. J and I have spent many an evening being fascinated by all the little lights that come on at this time of year.

3) Pantomimes 

J is only a little over 2 years old. So we settled for watching a show on tele this year. We watched Aladdin over on ITV2.  The genie had me more excited than he did my J! As J grows older, I hope to take him to theatre to catch a good live panto where we can both shout, "Behind you!"

4) Shiny baubles 
'Shiny' is J's middle name. He is almost like a little magpie when it comes to anything sparkly. Little wonder then, that shiny baubles are a very important part of our Christmas. J helped dress our tree with lots of shatter-proof shiny baubles. We also crafted a few paper ones at home. And yes, we stuck on lots of shiny, glittering bits to make them extra sparkly.

5) Christmas Markets 
This one's more for the parents. Although J does enjoy riding on the buses to get to the markets. And eating hot sausages and sugary waffles once he gets there. I hope to pick up one new special bauble for our tree every year. This is J's third Christmas. So far, we have a little Santa, a wooden teddy with J's name engraved on it and a white heart. 

6) Christmas songs 
Songs are the easiest and perhaps the best way to get us all into festive mode. On TV, on radio or on CD, J and I like to sing and dance to popular Christmas numbers when there is little else to do. Cold December afternoons are spent prancing around the living room like Rudolph or dashing through (pretend) snow in a sleigh.  Mariah Carey, Michael Buble,  Bing Crosby and Nat King Cole get the parents going, while Santa, snowflakes and snowmen have J all wrapped up in Christmas.

7) Christmas Parties 
Christmas would not be Christmas without Christmas parties. I absolutely love them, as does J. We have been to a few good ones this year. At playgroup, at the local soft-play centre and at his music group. With bouncy castles, chocolate, cake, cards, Santa and presents. There were a couple of grown-up ones as well, but J wasn't invited!

8) Spiced Banana Fruit Cake 
Banana does not spell Yuletide. But when baked into a cake with honey, orange zest, fruit and spice, it does. I have been baking this cake at Christmas every year since I learnt how to bake not so long ago. Judging by its popularity, this is one untraditional tradition that seems all set to stay in our home.

9) Mulled wine 
Nothing, but nothing can warm the cockles of your heart like a cup of hot mulled wine. The rich aroma that pervades your senses even before the liquid touches your lips. The flavour of fragrant spices that lingers long after a sip. The other half and I have spent many a winter's evening with a cup by our sides. And continue to find time to do so.

10) Books for Presents 
However old he may be, J will always find a good book or two under his Christmas tree. Wrapped up with love.

11) Candles 
I love candles. Their warm soft glow sets the tone for Christmas like nothing else does. My favourite tealight holder, the pride and joy of my Christmas table, makes an appearance at this time of year. Its coming to the dining table is a certain indicator that Christmas has arrived in the C household.

12) A Walk after Christmas Lunch 
So the big day is here. The presents are unwrapped, there is much food, drink and merriment. All that is needed to round off a wonderful day of happy memories is a little  stroll through the cold wintry evening. Where you wrap up warm and try riding your first bicycle. Or hold hands and walk along as fairy lights twinkle like stars in the sky.


  1. I knew I'd forgotten something... Christmas markets! They have to be German though... ;) good luck with this x

    1. Thanks Steph :-) And good luck to you too! x


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Subscribe to My Blog by Email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner