Tuesday, December 20, 2016

So this is Christmas

Do you have certain traditions that your family enjoys every year? We have several, but the majority of them are connected with Christmas:
Birmingham's German Market
  • Walking round the neighbourhood posting Christmas cards 
  • Hiding in the bedroom to wrap presents 
  • Decorating the tree while listening to Garth Brooks Christmas songs 
  • Colour coding the wrapping paper for prezzies under the tree 
  • Making dozens of mince pies and three Christmas cakes 
  • Watching a family movie with mulled wine and roast chestnuts 
  • Playing Poker, Scene-it and a host of other team games 
  • Eating a full Turkey dinner with crackers and all the trimmings
And the real family highlights: a trip to the German market (oh those bratwurst), singing Christmas carols outside Warwick castle (more wine/chestnuts), and one of the best, when the whole family walk round the local fields, wrapped up against the crisp December chill on Christmas morning. A quick straw poll had all five family members picking something different, most people torn between two or three.
Carols at Warwick Castle
I could only find a couple of tasks which weren’t fun: the annual argument about how to construct the base for the 7ft tree, and painstakingly replacing each bulb in the multi-string lights to find the duff ones. However, even for the total Christmas addicts (like me), there's always the danger when the genuinely fun activities are repeated year after year, that the novelty wears off. People may become less willing to engage, doing it out of a sense of duty/just to please, when they'd rather be playing with some electronic gadget.

Every new addition to the family brings with it a new energy, a different viewpoint. This year we're joined by my son-in-law, a Ukranian guy who’d never set foot in the UK before this month, let alone been faced with a plateful of mince pies when he entered the house.

A Winter Wonderland
He is enchanted with every aspect of our country/home and family, taking great pleasure in many things we've taken for granted for so long we rarely give them a second thought.
It’s an absolute delight to experience everything through his eyes, re-discovering the many joys this season brings.
Thank you, Artem, for helping us to reconnect with the awe and wonder of Christmas.

What about you? Do you have special family traditions? We'd love to hear more about your celebrations.

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