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First year at home -Combining Christmas Traditions & making new ones.

(20 Posts)
Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 08:51:18

This is the first year we will be at home. We always spend it at DM or DMIL.

We have a 'debate' going on around what to do Christmas
Eve/ Christmas Day/ Boxing Day. For example one of us wants it to be a pyjama day as they think it should be a nice chilled out day & the other wants everyone dressed nicely as they think it should be a special occasion. maybe we could get a MN vote on that? grin

Other than that, we don't know what to do for the days etc as we are used to be in groups of at least 30 plus. How do we combine how traditions and make new ones? We think we are using this year and will stand firm and stay at home from now on each year, stating anyone is welcome to join us.

Would love to hear how everyone spends their day, would be interesting.

Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 08:52:43

Our traditions, not how traditions.

kaymondo Sun 30-Nov-14 09:09:10

We had out first Christmas at our house last year after years of going to either set of parents. Now they come to us!

In terms of Christmas Day, we do a mix of what you've said in that we have a very lazy morning in pj's opening presents and not rushing to get dressed. But when people do get dressed, they make a bit of an effort so when we sit down to dinner everyone looks nice.

In terms of traditions we have taken some traditions from each of our families and carried them on in our house. Not really got any of our own yet but I'm kind of relaxed about that as I figure that will happen naturally as the kids get older. The main ones we currently have are new pj's to be worn on Xmas eve, hot turkey sandwiches before bed on Christmas Eve (as my parents always cooked the turkey on Christmas Eve night - I don't but we have a separate little turkey ready to roast joint so we can still have the turkey sandwiches!) and a small present for each person on their placemat when we sit down to dinner (which comes from DH's side).

Good luck in working out how you want to do Christmas! I really enjoy hosting, have 13 coming this year.

Pollywallywinkles Sun 30-Nov-14 09:22:13

For us Christmas Eve is all about preperation to reduce the effort on Chrsitmas Day. Normally finish around lunchtime and pop to the pub. Final prep when we get back and then a chill out with Christmas films.

Christmas Day is a lazy casual morning, special breakfast in casual attire and then get dressed up for dinner. No tv until late evening. Lots of chatting, Christmas music and games. Those of us up early will take the dog for a walk. It's always a nice atmosphere when you meet other folks. There will be at least one other dog walk during the day, taking the dog out is always a good excuse to get a bit of peace and quiet and some fresh air.

Boxing Day is our lazy day. Bubble and squeak for late breakfast and then the focus of the day is a dog walk. We used to go to the coast, but more and more people got the same idea so we tend to see off the hunt and then have a walk over the fields. Only easy cooking, lots of films and games.

Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 09:25:06

I meant to say, will be just us this year, as everyone else has already made plans. Future years, anyone is welcome.

Can we roast the turkey the day before then? I'm very worried about it getting it wrong and it being dry. This is the first time I've cooked it. Will only be a small one though, may even go for chicken for various reasons.

I like the idea of pjs whilst opening presents and then getting dressed with an effort.

Pollywallywinkles Sun 30-Nov-14 09:28:17

The meat eaters here have chicken as they don't like turkey.

Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 10:55:42

I think we are worried about it being just another day. Is it fair of me to put a blanket ban on computers etc? I don't want it to be a day where the TV is on constantly too. Maybe in the late afternoon, once everythings cleared up, just I want to be able to listen to Christmas songs in the day, and play with gifts/ read books etc.

Pollywallywinkles Sun 30-Nov-14 11:22:15

Limit screen time and plan what is going to be viewed on TV. Don't have it on outside those times, but you may need to plan other things to do.

JohnCusacksWife Sun 30-Nov-14 11:33:53

To be honest I don't think you can set out to "make" traditions....they just happen organically. You'll suss out the things that suit you and your family and they'll just gradually become the things you do each year. Just go with the flow and enjoy!

Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 12:36:12

May be I will get everyone to look ahead and see what is on TV, and pick a few things.
I agree about 'making' traditions, I think I just worded it badly in my OP.
I really just wanted to know what other people do on the day, as usually its filled with everyone having a catch up, loads of children playing together etc etc. Didn't want it to feel 'empty' & may be some ideas we could pinch of someone grin.
Also we both have traditions from our childhood, which our parents still do now. We can't keep all of them, & some clash, like the pjs vs dressing up etc. May start a vote on that on another thread grin

Margaritte Sun 30-Nov-14 16:17:31

Anyone else, no? grin

Pollywallywinkles Sun 30-Nov-14 16:29:51

Can you fit some Skype or FaceTime with family at some point? I tend to do that with my sister late afternoon on Christmas Day.

We started dressing up for dinner when DD was little and wanted to wear her party dress and insisted we dressed up too. It went from there.

Lots of other things just developed and became traditions. You will find your own way of doing things.

WhereDidTheYearsGo Sun 30-Nov-14 16:31:03

We managed the pjs versus smart issue by having Christmas dinner at 4.30 (children's tea time when they were small). This meant we could get up and spend all morning in pjs and slobbing while doing stockings, meant the children could eat lots of Christmas chocolate/rubbish without being told they would ruin their dinner and meant I didn't have to miss all the present opening because I was running to and fro the kitchen. Then about 11.30ish hubby goes off and got the kids some lunch (something quick like pork chops and jacket potatoes) while I have a nice bath then we all get ready in nice clothes. MIL or other relatives can't arrive till about 1pm by which time we've had a nice relaxed morning and are all togged up for the rest of the day.

Pollywallywinkles Sun 30-Nov-14 17:41:08

Similar for us where.

Due to there only being the three of us we ate at dusk by candlelight to make it extra special.

Margaritte Tue 02-Dec-14 00:35:22

Really like the idea of fitting Skype in. Relaxing morning with dinner later on sounds good too, as does laying the table with candles.

WhatWouldTheDoctorDo Thu 04-Dec-14 08:54:48

We started having Christmas at home last year.

A later 'Christmas lunch' (at around 5pm) makes for a much more relaxed day and I'm in the dress nicely camp. Though I have but Christmas jumpers this year!

We FaceTime family, and everyone gets a cd in their stocking which goes on at some point during the day. Very limited telly,and DS will get a board game which we'll all play.

Margaritte Fri 05-Dec-14 14:17:01

So what time do I start dinner, for a later one? Those who do eat late afternoon, what do you have for lunch?

WhatWouldTheDoctorDo Fri 05-Dec-14 14:40:00

We have our 'starter' for lunch, which is normally soup. Time wise, I just work back from when I want the turkey to come out of the oven. I normally take out the turkey, and while it's resting put the veg, potatoes etc. in the oven. I pre-prep the veg and potatoes (either the night before or freeze in advance) so it's all ready in trays to go in. We end up only being quite busy in the kitchen for about an hour.

hartic Fri 05-Dec-14 16:37:10

Last year was our first as just us four and like you, I was worried about traditions and it being just another day, etc..
It was amazing! Relaxed first thing, we made breakfast special with crackers and christmassy placemats. We staggered the presents throughout the morning and then after lunch went to the park for a walk and a swing on the swings! Then home to play with toys and watch a Christmas film together before having dinner, which was mostly bung in the oven stuff from M &S.

It was fab.

A big family christmas is over rated. Give me time in my own home spoiling ourselves any day.

TooManyMochas Fri 05-Dec-14 21:55:58

I had literally no idea before reading this thread that some people dress up for Christmas Day. Way too much work grin.

We like having Christmas Eve & Day to ourselves (DH, me and 2yo DS) and seeing family either side. We open presents from family around teatime on Christmas Eve and stockings on Christmas morning (this is a tradition from my family). I loved spreading presents out that way as a child and it seems to work well for DS too. We have a big tea of indulgent Christmassy food before the Christmas Eve present opening too. When I was a child we often used to go into town on Christmas Eve afternoon and look at the shops and lights. On Christmas morning we open stockings, have a special breakfast, go to church and then home for Christmas dinner. We'll Skype / ring family at some point as well.

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