We have some family traditions for Advent and Christmas. There are traditional stories to read and the traditional things to cook.
Food wise we make marmalade, cranberry sauce, Christmas mincemeat and Iona makes chilli jam. I make rich “boiled” Christmas cake. It isn’t really boiled but that seems to be the name for it. Then Iona makes a chocolate log.
This year I am starting a new tradition of making mulled apple juice. (Last year I made mulled berry juice but we didn’t get the fruit in time this year).
Then there’s the great pre-Christmas clear out. It’s astonishing how many bin bags we can fill in this time.
The children all do a clear out of their toys and make sure there is a big bag of things to give to Santa. This is because Saint Nicholas likes to make sure he has enough toys for poorer families and it’s good for the children to give Santa a hand in his work.
An at first glance rather strange family tradition is having the tree in a play pen. We started this tradition when Ronan was little and had tried to pull the tree down on top of himself. Having it in the pen means it can’t be climbed or pulled over and the pressies are safer under it.
One of the other traditions for the older three is to help Father put the Christmas tree up in Church and build the crib scene.
Story time over Christmas for the children there’s a few favourites:
Some of the stories from Classic Christmas Stories
Also I am still reading them The Phoenix and the Carpet by E Nesbit and The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus from Yesterday’s Classics (Kindle edition)
My reading: I am still reading The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club by Dorothy Sayers (but can’t remember where I got it).
I have also just received Matron Knows Best by Joan Woodcock the true story of a 1960s NHS nurse.