Welcome to Mumsnet!

We’re delighted you’ve found us. Join in the conversation on the UK's busiest site for parents

Get started »

Christmases past: your favourite holiday memories

Remember how much fun Christmas was when you were a kid, and not actually responsible for buying presents for the masses or making sure the turkey's properly defrosted? Mumsnetters recall the best bits from their carefree childhood Christmases

Share this on Facebook

Decking the halls (and the ceilings, and the classrooms...)

"For us, [the best bit] was choosing a real Christmas tree on the second Sunday in December and watching Dad try to attach it to the roof of a Ford Cortina with string. Getting said Christmas tree home and leaving my dad and brother to chisel the trunk down sufficiently to fit it in the oddly narrow Christmas tree stand, while the rest of us got the decorations down from the cupboard on the landing. Then decorating the tree with our Christmas LP playing." 

"We had those metallic decorations hanging from the ceiling, which made our house look like a pub."

"No decorations went up in our house until we fell asleep on Christmas Eve. We believed for years that a Christmas fairy came and put them up that night. Why we were never suspicious of the fact that everyone else had had theirs up for weeks, I'll never know." 

"The excitement of seeing the classroom get more and more Christmassy and decorated, and not being able to wait until the end of term." 

The anticipation and excitement

"Waking up to the weight of the stocking on my feet was always amazing! I still love those few moments after waking, just thinking quietly, 'It's Christmas!' before all the madness begins."

"We always drove across the mountains (we lived in Canada) to get to my grandparents' house for Christmas, so it started with the journey. Sometimes my mom would drive, but often we took the night bus. Grandpa would pick us up in his big car and from then on it was nothing but good telly, good food, playing in the snow and card games with the family."


"On Christmas morning, Dad would get up, light the fire and check to see if Santa had been. I'd be lying in my bed waiting for him to shout 'He's been!'" 

The food

"There were presents and Top of the Pops, and a hamper which Mum had paid for on the weekly, a turkey for Christmas lunch and frozen prawns for Christmas tea. Mum never got the hang of defrosting prawns; year after year we'd sit there rolling them in our mouths to try to get them crunchable!"

"My mum always either under- or overcooked the sprouts. The one year she got it right and cooked them perfectly we all just sat and looked at each other. We hadn't realised until then just how big a part of Christmas the good-natured ribbing about the sprouts really was!"

"We had a tiny kitchen, so my mum brought the kitchen table into the living room and folded it out and laid it really nicely. It was such a novelty. Me and my sister used to lie under the table after dinner and play with our toys while the grown-ups got mildly pissed watching TV."

"My mum always fussed over the Christmas milkman order and whether to get Irish cream or not!"

The family in-jokes

"A standout was the year my dad (as usual) swore blind he didn't want a present, so we hid his Black & Decker workbench and wrapped a piece of sandpaper under the tree - his brave but sad face was a picture!"

present behind back 

"Throughout the day my mum and dad would exchange gifts: they'd do the main one after we'd opened ours, before breakfast, and then each swear blind that that was the only one. Then throughout the day one of them would get another present out, and then the other would have another one to give and they tried to out do each other (obviously they got smaller and smaller as the day went on). Dad always won but it was lovely to watch!"


Liked this? Try these:

Mumsnet Christmas playlist

Party dresses to flatter curves

Why we love Christmas ads


Last updated: about 2 years ago