Without a doubt, Christmas for most people has more to do with spending time with family, eating more than you need to and feeling the pressure that you need to get everything right than it has to do with remembering the birth of Jesus. It’s a little sad that Christmas is so commercialised that few people, especially children, would rather concentrate on material goods and over indulgence than sacrifice and living by the saying “it’s better to give than to receive”. However, if you are able to accept that Christmas is that way and there’s little we can do to change it then here’s my top tips for making your Christmas better than ever.
Start Christmas Properly
I’ve never been a fan of decorating too early because I think a month of Christmas decorations hanging around the home takes some of the magic from the actual Christmas period. I tend to leave trimming up until as late as possible because my kids know that when the trimmings go up, Christmas is upon us and the excitement is palpable.
When the kids break up from school for the Christmas holidays, that’s when I visit the attic to retrieve the decorations. I think decorating every room is essential too. I know some people think their living room and the kids’ bedrooms are enough, but I like everything from the front to the back door and up the stairs is the only way to let everyone know that Christmas is a real celebration in our home. I usually add some new Christmas decorations each year, because something is usually too tatty after collecting dust for eleven months and the kids like to see something new too.
Tradition is Everything at Christmas
For me, eating Christmas dinner together is the most important part of Christmas day because that’s when we are all in a good mood and feeling sociable. I’m really not a morning person, especially after a late night preparing the presents for the morning surprise. I resemble a zombie when the kids are ripping the wrapping off their presents, but by the time my potatoes have roasted (I cook the turkey the night before), I’m ready for a glass of wine and up for pulling a few crackers. Christmas dinner is my highlight of the day because I love to go over the top on everything from pigs in blankets (bacon wrapped sausage) through to Christmas pudding with the one-pound coin in it because we don’t use sixpence anymore.
The Queen’s Speech
I’m not a royalist per se, but I appreciate the Royal family have been born to their position and while than it something some resent them for, I prefer to take the view that they had no choice and they live a life in the spotlight that is intrusive to say the least. That’s why I believe that the Queen’s speech and the announcements she makes therein should be gratefully received by the people of the UK and the Commonwealth. I’m not actually from England, but I’m from a country that is governed to some extent by the English, but I love the tradition and sincerity of the Queen’s address to the nation.
About the Author
Karen Underwood is a mother to three and a full-time panic-bot for two weeks every December, but believes it’s worth every minute to see the looks on the little one’s faces and the belt-loosening on the older ones’ trousers after a great Christmas Dinner.