Monday, 25 November 2019

Christmas Traditions


By Jayne Kingsley

One only had to walk into their local grocery store during the month of October to know that Christmas was fast approaching. Halloween merchandise made a gallant effort to hide the Christmas paraphernalia (for a while) but we all knew it was there.

I’m one of those people who secretly rejoiced the moment I spotted the first glint of tinsel hanging from the shelves. My last writing jaunt to my local cafĂ© had an additional spark with Christmas carols playing not so faintly in the background.
           
I am a Christmas tragic, in all my sparkly red and green glory, and I’m not afraid to say so.

Image courtesy of Giphy.com

My writing desk sports a mini Christmas tree (because whilst it amuses my husband ever so much to listen to me sing carols and decorate our kids fairy garden with tinsel, we have a rule that we don’t put the actual tree up until Dec 1). I have a sparkly reindeer that’s made its way to our dining room table and did I mention my website has snowflakes falling oh-so-delicately on it?

Since having kids we’ve developed a few family Christmas traditions. Our kids are young and still in that magical stage where Santa’s name is whispered reverently, and a single spotting can cause mass hysteria, so I thought I’d share a few of our Chrissy traditions with you on the blog today – to further along my Christmas cheer!

1.     We put the tree up on December 1. It doesn’t matter what day that falls on – we cook something super tasty for dinner, pop open a bottle of champagne (apple juice for the kids), play carols and we decorate the tree as a family. We have little wooden stars with each of our names carved in them and a whole range of handmade decorations by the kids. It’s a special evening that I look forward to every year.

2.     Christmas craft with my kids. Last year we built a Christmas village and as a special gift to my Instagram and FB followers I did a Christmas count down of watercolour sketches in the lead up to Christmas day. This year we’re colouring in Christmas cards to send to our loved ones and adding to our Christmas Village.

3.     We watch EVERY SINGLE Christmas movie available! Octonauts and Paw patrol Christmas rescues, Barbie helping Santa, every Hallmark movie I can get my grubby little hands on. And of course Love Actually on Christmas Eve. The cheesier and happier the movie – the better! So long as there's some Christmas element, it's on our tv. 

4.     Gingerbread house making! This is always fun (albeit a little messy and sickening to the stomach). This year we attempted a small replica of Elsa’s castle – which wasn’t structurally as sound as it needed to be, but boy did it taste great!

5.     Planning session with Mr Kingsley. This is a bit of a favourite for me. With young kids there isn’t always a lot of time or energy left at the end of the day to spend quality time together, but we always make sure we set one night aside where we just talk about the next year. We discuss holidays, life goals, and reconnect so we are on the same page for the year to come.

Image courtesy of Giphy.com

How about you? What are your family Christmas Traditions? Are they steeped in history or newly formed? Please let me know in the comments.

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I love to love... Christmas!
I love to laugh... with my kids whilst making gingerbread houses
I love to learn... new recipes that involve pumpkin and spice and all things nice

13 comments:

  1. I LOVE Christmas! And I have like a million decorations to put up all over the house while I sing along to Christmas songs. I've introduced my littlies to the tradition of decorating the tree on December 1st - I used to like to do it on my own so it looked 'perfect' but 'thrown together' is my favourite look these days because of the time I get to spend with my grandkids. Love the sound of your planning session with your hubby. So important!

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    1. Thanks Marilyn :) Christmas is certainly extra fun with little kids around!

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  2. I make Christmas cake and puddings using my great grandmother’s recipe. Our extended family is large so we have several functions over the Christmas period. That way we can all catch up. My favourite Christmas movie is Miracle on 34th Street. Do you have a favourite Christmas film?

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    1. Hi Sharon, Oooh family recipes are the best :D I bet they are delicious! My favourite Christmas film is Love Actually - it doesn't matter that i've watched it a million times - it still gets me all warm and fuzzy with happy Christmas cheer :D

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  3. All that sounds absolutely wonderful, Jayne! And may I suggest A Muppet Christmas Carol to add to your festive watching, it always makes me laugh. I'm a bit like you, I go into overloads of delight at tinsel and baubles and trees and sparkly decorations and movies and pressies and... like you, the list goes on and on. I also love church at this time of year, so special. Plus, natch, reading every Christmas romance I can lay my hands on!

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    1. Yes I probably should have mentioned Christmas romance reading - but that goes without saying, right? ;) Oooh i'll definately look up A Muppet Christmas Carol! We've been working through all the ABC kids Christmas episodes and Christmas books so always looking for more Christmas cheer ideas :D

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  4. We had to put our tree up early this year as we were having a family christmas do at our place but generally it is on the 1st of Dec. This year my grandson's helped decorate the tree and they loved it, especially when we turned on the lights. As I am half Dutch we also celebrate St Nick which is always a fun afternoon at my Aunt and Uncle's house.

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    1. Thats beautiful Cassie :) Sounds like lots of Christmas cheer in your neck of the woods!

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  5. Hang on to all that Christmas craft! I keep mine in a folder and bring it out every Christmas. My youngest child is now 22 so the angels are tatty and the cotton wool beards on Santa are rather thin, but I treasure it all. I also had all the Santa photos laminated, and display them every year. My living room is a Christmas mess but there are so many happy memories tied up in it. Thanks for the post, Jayne! Love the planning session idea. I think that might become a new tradition in the Janu household!

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    1. Oh I love that you've got your Christmas craft still! I may need a shipping container for all the craft my oldest does - she's rather prolific :) But I love being able to spend that time with them. I'll be adding the idea of laminating Santa photos to my list - that's brilliant! Yes the planning session is something I really look forward to - enjoy! :D

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  7. Lots of Christmas traditions in our household too but the main one is the tree. The date of decorating the tree varies but now involves a party in the form of a lot of junk food that we don't normally eat - as that is the incentive for the kids (now older) to be involved in the activity (and our tree, incidentally takes about three hours to decorate between five of us so you can understand the hunger!!).

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    1. Having seen your tree (which is absolutely EPIC and AMAZING!) I can understand that it's a star Christmas tradition. You've given me new tree goals to reach for next year ;)

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