Now that I'm older, married and have a family of my own (that's a scary sentence!) it's been funny to see how the joining of families starts to change the Christmas traditions you grew up with.
Last year, with a bid to not do much travelling over Christmas we spent it at home with Rob's family. We went there for Christmas day to have lunch and presents. It's funny joining another family and it all feeling a little alien. Every family varies in the time that they actually sit down to lunch, sometimes the potatoes are cooked differently and there is possibly the appearance of a disgusting looking congealed lumpy sauce that some people seem to think is delicious when in fact it makes me want to vomit just a little...yep bread sauce!
We had a mini Christmas day last weekend with my Mum as we won't be seeing her over the holidays as she is spending it with my sister in Spain, and we spoke a little about how our traditions have changed over the years and the inclusion of new ones from our different families. So here is a little list of my traditions, how we do things on Christmas day and how Rob's family do things differently!
1) Firstly stockings: always at the end of the bed! There's nothing more exciting to waking up feeling that heavy stocking laying by your feet and to hear the rustle of paper as you kick it to make sure! To be opened in bed still in your pyjamas. When we were little it was always my eldest sisters bed we would pile into, and even though we always said "next year we'll open them in my room!" it never happened.
2) After opening stockings and the present unwrapping urges have been met (for now!) you are permitted to get out of bed for a lazy breakfast. My mum likes to serve bucks fizz with croissants, but I'm pretty sure we've had a simple cooked breakfast round Rob's parents before.
When we were little we used to drag my dad out of bed and we were allowed to open one main present before breakfast (if I remember correctly!) whilst my mum had a lie in before cooking lunch.
3) After breakfast it's time to get dressed and get started on the dinner, or put christmas music on, put a film on, or get the snacks out, or all of the above. It's a bit of a free for all no-mans land. Or maybe a good time to go for a walk, or try out the new bike father Christmas gave you etc...
4) Probably about 1-2pm the lunch is served. Crackers were always pulled before you start eating in my house, but apparently in Rob's house it's when you've finished eating. Rob's family also have table presents, which are small funny or useful gifts..just to keep you going. I must just mention there is NEVER bread sauce served in my family!
5) After dinner and pudding we can waddle to the sofa and try and resist the lure of post-dinner snoozes for a film/tv watching and eventually present opening. We have one person stationed by the tree who passes a present to each person in turn. This last for a few minutes before it all gets a bit much and presents are just usually chucked at random.
6) More eating/ drinking/ lazing/ playing with new toys continues until it's time for the cheese board and perhaps some games.
7) Then it's back round the telly for Christmas specials of Eastenders and the like (definitely not Eastenders in Rob's house!), more eating/drinking, then perhaps more games before we all take our bloated bellies to bed!
Other traditions include playing a game called 'dibbles' on boxing day, which is a sort of raffle of (mainly) crap presents, which everyone has provided. Then a mad frenzy of swapping occurs, swapping spatulas for mini bottles of booze or a notepad! Rob's family have tree presents which are opened on boxing day. (This concept of table and tree presents is completely new to me, I'd never known anyone else to do it!)
|When I was obsessed with football and a Man U fan, obvs. (Also note my sega game gear attachment)|
So that's about it! What are your favourite or weird family traditions, or what have you had to sacrifice/endure/enjoy with your partners families?