I love Christmas and this week has been the perfect first week of the festive month. I have shopped pretty much till I’ve dropped already, opened doors on my (Frozen – be jel ;)) advent calendar, listened to every Christmas song ever and tinselfied the flat.
As I prepare to introduce my boyfriend to The Grinch (he’s never seen it!!??), I thought I’d share with you my top twenty favourite things about this wonderful time of the year.
♡ Mince pies | Okay, so I stalked all the shops way back in the beginning of October in a desperate attempt to track down some of these bad boys. FYI, Gregg’s were the winner with their delicious pack of five juicy pies. This Christmas delight is probably solely responsible for sending my calorie intake sky-high. Oops.
♡ The music | So in recent years I have abided by the myth that unless it is the twelfth month of the year, singing your heart out with Mariah Carey, is drastically unlucky. However, it’s been difficult to resist Wham’s ‘Last Christmas’, and those living in the flats above and adjacent to us may or may not have heard me blaring it out a good six weeks ago.
♡ The lights | Whether it’s one set of multi-coloured bulbs twinkling, or a year’s supply of electricity beaming back at you, the light displays in homes/streets/on roundabouts/generally anywhere possible, really do light up the chilly winter month.
♡ The movies | From initially hating on The Grinch for stealing Christmas, to watching Will Ferrell play the brilliant role of Buddy the Elf, and stuff his face with maple syrup and spaghetti, to rooting for little Kevin McCallister as he defends his home from the Wet Bandits while all alone, and obviously not forgetting to drool over Jude Law in The Holiday – Christmas movies are THE best.
♡ The tree | Real or fake, frosted or luscious green, no home is complete at Christmas without a special place for a star or angel to sit. Personally, I prefer a ‘miscellaneous’ theme, where colours don’t match. What’s more, my brother and I have been known to literally throw a whole load of chocolates on our tree in the lead up to Christmas, so that they are out of eye’s view. That way, when it comes to a gloomy January and it’s time to put the decorations away, there’s a sneaky surprise waiting for us – genius hey! 😉
♡ Games | At some point across the Christmas period I find myself partaking in the world’s most highly anticipated family affair, whether it is making sure we are picture perfect in a game of Pictionary, or ‘know it alls’ in a quiz it calls for a tactical team selection process – where winning becomes everything, haha.
♡ Father Christmas, Santa, Saint Nick | Yep. The big man himself. Enough said.
♡ SHOPPING | Why helllloooooo shopping spree x100. For most girls, shopping alone is a sport, but at Christmas it almost becomes an Olympic event. Battling through the crowds of fellow bargain hunters to snap up the perfect gift is a challenge, but so much fun. **To make your money go a little further this year, don’t forget to check out myvouchercodes/vouchercloud etc, as some high street retailers are offering an amazing 40% off!**
♡ TV Christmas specials | For myself, my family and many millions of others up and down the country, Eastenders on Christmas Day is a massive deal. The weeks of anticipation leading up to the humdinger episode all becomes worth it as it well and truly explodes on Albert Square. For others, the must-see tv might be Doctor Who, The Royle Family or Corrie, either way no Christmas evening is complete without a shocker on the box.
♡ The Nativity | In Kindergarten I played an angel, other years I donned a tea-towel on my head to pull off a very convincing shepherd, but in year two I remember my big break I played Joseph, so I will always look fondly upon any nativity play.
♡ Not so secret Santa | If you can make it all the way to the exchanging of presents WITHOUT breathing a word to anybody about who you have to buy a ‘secret’ present for, then I salute you. Regardless of the sporadic mystery, getting together with my friends to swap gifts is amazing fun!
♡ Santa’s snacks | Age is irrelevant when it comes to making sure Santa and his reindeer are fed and watered. Laying down a feast of carrots, mince pies and a glass of brandy is part of the bedtime ritual on the 24th.
♡ Giving presents | While choosing presents is never exactly easy, especially for boys, the process of selecting, wrapping (however, badly – remember it’s the thought that counts)and giving my gifts is so rewarding.
♡ Friends and family | Life is just so busy, but at Christmas the whole world seems to slow down and enjoy the moment. Some of us are scattered all over the country, plus this year, it will be the first time I will have seen my brother in three months and I can’t wait to be reunited with my little sister.
♡ Traditions | While it is not a common tradition, every Christmas Eve we go out for an Italian meal for my Dad’s birthday. We tend to gather at a local family run restaurant and the excitement and Christmas spirit is just so magical with one more sleep to go!
♡ Advent calendars | Like Easter, Christmas is the perfect opportunity to chomp a bucket load of chocolate without giving a second thought…until I stand on the scales in January, and when hindsight will become a wonderful tool in making me realise that I perhaps had one chocolate Santa too many…
♡ The adverts | For me, John Lewis always hits the top spot for a heart-warming advert, but this year Sainsbury’s took the trophy. Honouring the centenary of the First World War, the supermarket’s interpretation of the Christmas spirit is something to be admired. If you have been busy hibernating and haven’t yet seen it click here.
♡ Stockings | YAY. My stocking is absolutely gorgeous and features Minnie Mouse. I have had it since before I can remember and despite now being 22, Santa still generously fills it up. 😉
♡ Ice skating | Last year my boyfriend and I went to Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park and I took him ice skating for the first time. With the twinkling lights, Christmas market, mulled wine and roasted chestnuts for a backdrop, the stunning live musicians positioned in the centre of the ice, and the snowy sky creeping above us, this is possibly one of my favourite memories ever.
♡ Feeling like a big kid | I’ll admit it, as I know I am not alone in saying it, I can’t sleep on Christmas Eve and this year will be no different.