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The unusual moment you look forward to most?
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penguinwithasuitcase · 28/11/2021 10:48

Chatting to a friend this morning and she said that of everything about Christmas, the one moment that she loves most is:

Opening the front door to her extended family when they arrive on Christmas morning –the noise and madness of way too many people crammed into the hallway trying to get their coats off while juggling presents-stuffed-under-arms and kissing the kids at the same time and handing over a bottle of wine to put in the fridge and someone calling "Can you move the car over a bit so I can pull right in?" all at once.

I thought it was just the loveliest thing – that THAT's what she looks forward to most! Not presents, not lunch, not turning on the lights of the tree, but a cramped, chaotic moment of cold air and shoe-wrestling in the hallway Grin

What are your unexpected favourite moments of Christmas?

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Mamanyt · 29/11/2021 23:25

That moment when I feel the spirits of my mother and father gently touch my shoulders, and I know I am not, ever, alone.

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Redsquirrel5 · 30/11/2021 00:17

Christmas Eve when we dress all the children (2-14)even the visiting ones in costumes then their excited voices, then hush as we wait in silence for a minute or two before the lights are turned low and we all process out with the candlelight’s on their shining faces and the carol starts. One places baby Jesus in the crib and it is blessed and so are they, then they all sing Away in a Manger.They go and sit in their costumes and it is so lovely seeing a shepherd and a king and an angel sitting with mum, dad and granny.Then at the end of Mass they lead us all out, then a few of the children have baskets to give everyone a Quality Street sweet as the wish people a Merry Christmas. All the children shining and sparkling with expectation.

My other is having my four children home for the meal and enjoying the banter between them though DD will be missing again as she is stuck in New Zealand.
Then when it is time for me to sit down they are usually either end of the sofa asleep. They usually have all worked a shift before coming to us so good food, some beer and the warm fire has them dozing off just as I am ready to chat to them. We have photos of them and one is 6’ it is funny. It always makes me smile.

This is a lovely thread. I shall read some each day.

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JollyHostess · 30/11/2021 00:25

When my 3 were very little and all shared a room, I could hear them from my room opening their stockings together and being so excited and amazed that Father Christmas somehow knew exactly what they wanted! It was so cute and special, it made all the hard work (and staying up till 2am to sneak the stocking on yo my son's bed because he was too excited to fall asleep) worthwhile.

Years later, when I was a lone parent after my divorce, my best moment was just after bringing all the presents down and arranging them under the tree while they were asleep. I love to sit and admire how lovely the room looks, the tree, the lights and the presents and that feeling of great satisfaction that I'd got it all done alone.

I used to drink a glass of Sherry and/or Bailey's at that point and watch Gavin and Stacey! I don't drink any more so might have hot chocolate, light a candle and watch a nice Scandi Christmas series.

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GETTINGLIKEMYMOTHER · 30/11/2021 02:35

When I’ve finally given the chest its annual pre Christmas polish. It’s an antique Zanzibari one, heavy wood largely covered with ornamental brass and copper. A messy, tedious job, but lovely once it’s done.

The annual polish has become such a pre Christmas ritual, the smell of Brasso wadding has come to seem very Christmassy to me!

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motherofawhirlwind · 30/11/2021 06:56

Even though she was 13, DD still insisted on putting out some snacks for Santa last year and my OH bit chunks out of the carrot 😍 He also stayed up until she was asleep to put the presents out. She's not believed for at least 5 years, but still went to Grottos and likes to play along.

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DillDanding · 30/11/2021 09:00

I love that bit on Christmas Eve when we’ve done our last tidy and everywhere in the house looks perfect and sparkly before the chaos of the next day.

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AutumnAlmanack · 30/11/2021 10:02

I was feeling a bit 'bah humbug' about Christmas this year, but reading all these lovely posts has made me think. I am now going to embrace the coming festive season and make it really special for everyone.

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MummyBearBoo · 30/11/2021 10:09

I love my 5 year olds face when she wakes up and comes in our room to wake us up coz she knows she's it christmas and her eyes light up when she realises Santa has been. My youngest is still a bit young to understand yet but I imagine it'll be even better when the two of them do the same!

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MargoMargo · 30/11/2021 10:22

What a beautiful thread, it’s made me so emotional, and grateful x
My favourite moments are always Christmas Eve. 2 of my dc have moved out this year with their partners and 2 are still at home. Every Christmas Eve we get a takeaway an watch ‘It’s a wonderful life’, before they all set up the carrot/milk etc and head up to bed to all cram into one room to sleep, duvets on floors, so they can all wake together in the morning and pile on our bed with stockings. The eldest are in their 20’s and I feel beyond blessed that they’ve kept this tradition up, especially for their little brother.
This year is bittersweet for me, it’s the last time we will be doing it as next year they have said they will be spending it with their partners. Totally understandable, and I’m excited for all the new memories they’ll be making..but I know I’ll be shedding a tear or two at the growing up and out of our little bubble x

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CactusLemonSpice · 30/11/2021 10:39

@SingingSands

I'm always last up to bed on Christmas Eve after tidying up and setting out the presents. My favourite moment is just before I go up, I take a photo of the room with the twinkly lights and presents and savour the anticipation of what's to come in the morning. I don't know why I do this, but I love it!

Ooh yes, I do this, too!
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UndertheCedartree · 30/11/2021 11:23

@Mamanyt

That moment when I feel the spirits of my mother and father gently touch my shoulders, and I know I am not, ever, alone.

Beautiful Flowers
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UndertheCedartree · 30/11/2021 11:44

One of my favourite times is when we go to see FC. We go to the same place every year - thought we'd have a change one year and the DC were unimpressed! (We walked into the Grotto and FC was sitting there half dressed with beard off eating his lunch!Grin)

We always go with my ex-DH too which is really nice. We are completely amicable so it just feels quite nostalgic us 4 together. We go to a funfair to see FC. There is lots to do - making reindeer food and Christmas crafts, festive rides under the (fake) snow, going to the cafe for a hot chocolate and gingerbread man. Then along the Christmas trail to the Christmas village where we get to see FC. He gives them a star to spend in the toy shop so then the excitement of choosing. We often have lunch afterwards. It's lovely seeing the DC so happy and excited. I see their smiles and their dad smiling down at them and it melts my heart. The FC visit means it really is Christmas time!

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LadyRoughDiamond · 30/11/2021 11:58

Cooking smells coming from the kitchen on Xmas eve whilst Carols From Kings is on the radio. Reminds me of Christmases when I was small.

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maudmadrigal · 30/11/2021 12:05

I like the day the kids finish school, even though I'm still working and frantic.

And I like late on December 23rd, when I've filled the advent calendar pockets for the last time that year.

And the beach in the very late afternoon, when we've eaten and everyone wants to let off some steam.

We had a Christmas years ago when the kids were little and my son had an awful autumn/winter - in and out of hospital with chest infections (he was diagnosed with asthma in the January). We'd been in on 23rd, and discharged but we had to give him inhalers all through the night and take him to the GP the next morning to check he was well enough to stay at home or if they'd readmit him. The moment where I phoned home to say we'd got the go-ahead and I was bringing him home for Christmas really sticks in my mind even now. It was such a relief. DH got a new job that day too (and thus out of a role that he really disliked).

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Bacardi101 · 30/11/2021 12:25

My favourite moment is on Christmas Eve after sneaking in the DD’s stocking on the end of their beds stuffed with lots of their favourite little things and always a stuffed toy poking out the top it always makes me feel all warm inside knowing I’m doing my best as a single mum and also that I’ve managed another year of not accidentally waking them up 😊🥰

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MrsArchchancellorRidcully · 30/11/2021 12:29

Getting to drink before 11am on Christmas Day! The only day of the year I do this!!! It feels very naughty but so delicious.

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VanillaIce1 · 30/11/2021 12:41

My moment is Christmas Eve when I've put all my finishing touches to the house and stockings have been filled etc. Before I go to bed I take one more look around the room and also take a photo like a PP has said! And just stand there looking for a few minutes. It really does feel lovely.
I also love the Christmas food shop pissing about with trolleys packed so high foods falling off and seeing how stressed every one else is, it does make me smile every year at how over board we go just for one day really. But I'll never admit Christmas is one day.
For me Christmas is the beginning of December until New Years. There's so many activities and lovely music and great times around, the whole month just feels magical.

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WeddingBella · 30/11/2021 14:00

Mine is a bit random and is an adapted version of a family tradition. At around 6:30am on 1st December my dad calls me and my sister and plays Christmas music at us for a minute - usually he sings along and dsis and I giggle away, then we chat for a few minutes and that's it, on with the day. Every year I feel the same way (childish and excited) when we hang up.
It's so silly that I love it, and it really kicks of them Christmas month for me. And even better, he adapted it further last year so Dsis took her phone into my nephews room and woke him up to join in Xmas Grin

A past favourite that I miss is going to visit my Nan in the run up to Christmas Day. She would insist she wanted the day at home just her and my grandad so we would all try and fit in visits in the week or so before but no matter which day you chose, the house would be full and you'd end up staying for longer because you'd be catching up with aunts, uncles, cousins and friends you hadn't seen in a year or 2.
You'd end up sitting on the floor or a random stool because she never had enough chairs, nan would make everyone weak tea and try and force feed you biscuits / cakes / sweets / toast and it was just lovely. I looked forward to it every year.
She's been gone 5 years now and although the majority of the family congregate at my mums instead, it's just not the same.

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evilharpy · 30/11/2021 14:40

I asked my 7yo this question. She said one of the things she looks forward to is when we get into the car, put Christmas songs on, and drive around town looking at all the houses with Christmas lights outside. I first did this when she was very small just to kill time one evening and we've done it every year since - I had no idea she loves it so much. She said it makes her feel very Christmassy.

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bg92 · 30/11/2021 15:58

@penguinwithasuitcase

Ha! *@Oftenithinkaboutit* not nosy at all - it's good internet manners to be the first to go and I didn't, did I?!

It's very specific to us and a bit self-centred –but when DP, DSS and I had our first Christmas together 4 years ago, I was having a bit of a tough time knowing how and where I fit in. I have none of my own family in this country (I'm outside the UK) and they were such a close unit, I struggled not to feel as though I was intruding on their day.

At some point that first Christmas I asked DSS if he could have one wish for the next year, what it would be. He told me something funny like no school on Fridays (he was 10).

As part of a project I was crafting, I had a few tiny glass bottles with corks in the top, so I got 3 of them out and we all wrote a wish for the year to come on a little piece of paper, put them inside a bottle each, corked them, and hung them on the tree.

The next year we got our decorations out to do the tree, and when DSS saw the bottles he jumped to grab them and read what he had written the year before.

Now it's something he reminds us all about every year, and it just feels so special that he cares and enjoys this little tradition he and I created together. It makes me feel like I really am 'part of the family'.

So my favourite moment now is when we hang our wish-bottles on the tree. DSS always gives me a squeeze and I swallow a big lump in my throat and feel very lucky.



This made me cry
He is so lucky to have you and you are him

This whole thread is just pure, thanks for posting this
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twilightermummy · 30/11/2021 16:00

Our cold Christmas Eve walk. Makes me smile just thinking about it.

I also quite enjoy getting stressed around the shops with the Xmas music on in the background 😂

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NortieTortie · 30/11/2021 16:18

I cherish Xmas eve. The rush of trying to settle the overexcited children, then the mad dash last minute wrapping with Christmas music veeeery low. When that's done, DH and I open our presents to each other and it's like our own special mini-xmas.

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NortieTortie · 30/11/2021 16:19

Also great idea for a thread OP, it's made my day!

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Jewel52 · 30/11/2021 20:22

Gorgeous thread, so warm! And love how quirky we all are in our preferences😍! Some things really resonated like the Radio Times thing, TOTP And the tree decorating. But my real favourite is Christmas cookery programmes, despite intending to rely more on M&S than my own culinary skill, I just adore watching others cook 👩‍🍳

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KurtWildesChristmasNamechange · 30/11/2021 20:37

I asked my youngest DD this question - she's 11. Her favourite part is when we travel to my ex-in-laws who live in a tiny rustic village about 5 hours from here. Her favourite part and fondest of memories is when we finally approach the village and she sees all the Christmas lights strung across the streets. It's honestly like the village that time forgot and she absolutely loves it there.

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