Christmas is upon us and I’m sure you don’t need another reminder but I wanted to share some of my Christmas traditions for anyone that isn’t familiar with the festive season, or anyone that shares different cultural traditions around this time of year.
After all, UCB is a very multi-cultural university which has students from 65 countries, just in case you didn’t know!
And another thing that you probably didn’t know is that Christmas isn’t just about giving gifts — there are so many other ways to celebrate.
I like going to church on Christmas Day, it’s super special – singing Christmas carols and just the glorious atmosphere, gets me every time.
Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree, how lovely are your branches…
My family and I put up our Christmas tree on the first weekend in December. There’s no rule as to when the tree should be put up but for us, the first weekend in December is a good time as it marks the beginning of the festive season.
The kids love this time of year – the rows and rows of houses lined with colour and Christmas lights, decorations around shopping centres, Christmas songs playing in superstores – you begin to get a real feel for the Christmas cheer and the joy that it brings. It kind of has an element of excitement and anticipation, you know, sort of like a good film.
Traditionally, evergreen fir trees have been used for thousands of years, to celebrate winter festivals (pagan and Christian) and for many Christians, the Christmas tree represents an everlasting life with God.
As a child, I remember decorating our Christmas tree and the magic that it brought to our family home. It was a sign that Christmas wasn’t far away and that presents could start appearing under the tree at any moment.
Well, our Christmas tree is very different this year, just take a look.
We’ve chosen a simple but effective wall mounted Christmas tree because we haven’t got a tree from last December, we have a small budget and a small amount of space in our living room. So instead of using floor space, we’ve used our wall space – some would call it smart (I would – hehee). All I used was 6 metres of tinsel, lights and small baubles – I’d say that we spent less than £5.
My kids were keen to get started on their advent calendars and who wouldn’t be? I mean, unless you really don’t like chocolate but even then, there are several alternatives, including jewellery. Advent calendars are great for helping the kids count down to the big day.
Our family love playing games at Christmas, whether it’s Monopoly, Connect 4, draughts or something just as interactive. I love being around my family at Christmas but of course, not everyone has that privilege and for some international students, Christmas might look a little different this year.
Food, glorious food…
What is a traditional Christmas dinner without roast turkey and stuffing, roast potatoes, cranberry sauce, parsnips, carrots and brussel sprouts? Pigs in blankets aren’t for everyone and definitely not for me. Oh, and we should never forget Yorkshire puds. All of this is making my mouth water! And I’m usually happy with an alternative to Christmas pudding, like apple crumble and custard or some other form of cake (if I can manage a dessert).
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas for me without a good family movie. I’m not sure which film we’ll choose this year but a comedy usually goes down well.
So, I’m counting down to Christmas and I hope you’re looking forward to the celebrations too.
Have a great weekend!