I have always loved Christmas and we have always been people that hold traditions. Since I've grown up, moved out and started my own family I've taken some traditions and made new ones so I thought I'd do a list of the traditions we do every Christmas without fail.
Christmas Eve Hampers
Every year I make a hamper for everyone in the house with Christmas Eve bits. They include a Christmas DVD to watch that night, sweets and popcorn, a sachet of hot chocolate with mini marshmallows and whipped cream, new pyjamas, a mini bottle of Jack Daniels (for Sean) and Baileys (for me) plus some individually bagged oats and glitter that we call reindeer food. We sit down around 6pm and allow the girls to stay up a little later than usual to enjoy everything. This year I've included a printed blanket with sleeves for them too considering it's set to be the coldest winter in a hundred years.
Baileys & Mince Pies For Santa
Every year on the mantel above the stockings we place a mince pie and a (rather big) glass of Baileys for Santa to enjoy. When the girls grow up a little it will have to be changed to milk or coffee (Santa doesn't drink and ride, kids) but for now, I like Baileys so Baileys it is.
I cook every year and when I do Christmas, I do it right. I lay out the table with pretty tablecloths, glasses, crackers, napkins etc and make a whole host of vegetables and side dishes to go with the turkey. I make so much we're eating it in bubble and squeak for days afterwards but dinner usually turns out well.
Christmas Decoration Gifts
My best friend Christina and I exchange Christmas tree decorations so each year we end up with something new for our tree. It's one of my favourite things to shop for.
Elf On The Shelf
I love to do Elf On The Shelf. Elf is basically a little elf ornament or toy that comes from Santa with a little note saying that during the month of December he will be observing all good or bad behaviour and reporting back to Santa the day before Christmas Eve. When the girls are playing Elf will sit outside the door or peek around their bedroom doors to make sure there's no naughty behaviour at bedtime. This is the first year Layla really understands what's going on and asked me why Elf had not moved all day yesterday. I was ill, okay, kid?