I'm pretty sure Christmas is celebrated somewhat differently in every home in every country across the world (after all, we all have our own traditions), but today I wanted to share with you ten things that every Brit will do/have at Christmas time because, well, it just wouldn't be Christmas without them...
1. Letters to Santa
Every child who embodies the magic of Christmas is encouraged to write a present wish list and send it to Santa. In fact, the Royal Mail even have an address that you can send letters to, and if you write to him in early December, you'll get a response from the big guy himself!
Telling the story of the birth of Jesus (based on the two accounts in the gospels of Luke and Matthew), the Nativity is a Christmas staple in most schools. Children aged five to ten perform the Nativity for parents, grandparents and anyone else who wants to watch, usually in school halls, for a couple of afternoons or evenings in the final week of school before the winter break.
3. Midnight Mass
OK, so maybe not every Brit attends Midnight Mass but I know for a fact that more people attend church at Christmas and Easter than during the rest of the year. I actually really enjoy chilling at home for an hour or so, with a good book, while Hubby heads to our local church for Midnight Mass.
4. Treats for Santa
|How cool is this plate? I'll defo be getting one when I have kids!|
A mince pie, a glass of sherry
or something else alcoholic and a carrot for Rudolph are left on coffee tables and side tables in homes all across Britain on Christmas Eve to keep Santa going as he makes his way around the world, delivering presents.
5. Christmas Crackers
I can honestly say that I was well and truly shocked when I heard that we Brits are the only people who really have crackers at Christmas time. The Christmas Day table would be bare without them in my opinion. They always contain a paper
crown hat, a silly toy and a crappy joke.
It may be the average American's choice for Thanksgiving and not Christmas, but it's almost unheard of for a British family to tuck into anything other than turkey (be it big bird or crown) on Christmas Day.
7. Christmas Pudding
Made using sugar, egg and suet and containing a ton of dried fruit and alcohol, Christmas pudding is a traditional cake that dates back to Medieval England! Hubby doesn't like it and I can only eat it after a Christmas dinner; for me, it's like the official half way point of the festivities on the day. It's gotta be eaten with brandy sauce though. The awesome photo above can be found here, along with a great recipe so you can have a go at making your own Christmas pud next year :)
8. The Queen's Speech
Good ol' Queenie; every year she takes five minutes out of her Christmas Day (not really, it's filmed in advance) to address the nation and talk us through the last 12 months, as well as wishing us and our kin health,
a bit of wealth and happiness for the coming year.
9. Christmas Tea
Despite the fact that the average Brit consumes a whopping 6,000 calories on Christmas Day, we really do eat for England; many of us, only a few hours after a big roast dinner, tuck into a festive tea which often consists of leftover turkey, ham, boiled eggs, salad, cocktail sausages, cheese, crackers, pork pie, sausage rolls, pickled onions, crisps and much, much more. No wonder we all start diets come January 1st!
10. Boxing Day
A public holiday here in Britain, December 26th is more commonly known as Boxing Day; although there is argument about where the name actually came from, we all agree that it's awesome to have another day off work... unless you work in retail, that is. Like Black Friday after Thanksgiving, Boxing Day is a day of sales here in Britain, with many people not content in spending loads on gifts for their family, they hit the shops to buy more
crap stuff, this time for themselves!
There you have it; ten very British things for a very British Christmas!
I hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas
This post first appeared on my blogging bestie's blog last Christmas Eve.