Christmas time is always a bit nostalgic and sentimental, and every family has their own quirky traditions they have to do, or specific old decorations that have to be put out, no matter how old and dishevelled- It is tradition after all! But as twenty-somethings, when do we reach the point of starting new traditions for the future families of our own? Do we just wait and save all the fun stuff for if/when we have children? Do we keep the ideas safe until we have our own houses? And just live within your old childhood traditions when you go ‘home’ for Christmas until then?
No, of course not! This year will be Luke and I’s second Christmas living together, and although we are in a rented flat, it’s so important to me to embrace the festivities throughout December. I bloody love Christmas, so the thought of leaving it all until Christmas week when I go home to my mum’s house depresses me no-end. I mentioned that we live in rented because I’m sure many of you can relate that when you don’t own your own home, it can often feel frustrating not being allowed to do whatever you want with the space you live in to make it your own. So cracking on with the below traditions are really important in making the most of our little flat and bringing it to life in December.
Obvious number one to make the effort to have your own tree and decorations, and not just wait to embrace your parents when you go there for actual Christmas (which is what I used to do back in the uni days). That warm gentle glow of the tree the corner of the room whilst you’re watching telly provides a sense of joy and calm that nothing else can for me. It’s my favourite time of year so that does play a big part too.
Growing up, our tree was never a ‘themed’ tree like the ones you’ll see on Instagram these days, it was an old fashioned proper family tree. We had ornaments and baubles that were older than me, handmade decorations that my sisters and I had made in nursery and everything had been added year by year to make it our tree. That’s what I really love about going home for Christmas, is seeing those familiar decorations. And so although the tree in our flat is tiny and quite basic, I do want to make an effort to find some new unique decorations each year to add to it, and by doing so, add to the memories our tree will hopefully hold over the years.
This is a really important part of ‘making a house a home’ for me, obviously it’s not just a Christmas thing, but those Christmas scents are the absolute best. I love them all, Christmas Cookie, Gingerbread, Spiced Apple, Cinnamon, Candy Canes, the whole sha-bang, you name it, I love it. To be honest, I’ve gone a bit mad with the whole candle obsession this year to the point I really can’t resist buying them when I see them, and we are a little bit stock piled with refills. But we do have them lit every single evening, and it just makes the flat feel so cosy and appealing, so it really is a must. Although I joked to Luke that candles are practically an additional direct debit on my outgoings each month, and it’s something I probably need to sort/cut out. not in December though. Obviously not.
Now, I don’t want to sound materialistic here, as I know that Christmas is not all about the presents. However I really love present planning, Christmas shopping, and then wrapping them up all. I always end up spending more than I can afford, but I just love getting people presents they will actually love, but would never treat themselves too. It’s the best feeling isn’t it? And I am also one of those freaks that bloody loves wrapping things up. Ribbon, bows, tags, the lot, my presents have to look good piled under my lil’ tree. Then it really starts to feel like Christmas for me. I’ve just realised that’s probably why I always get it done early so I can have them under the tree to complete my decorations, is that a tradition of mine? 🤷
This is a tradition I know a lot of people have at Christmas, cracking out the dusty board games that you don’t have time to play the rest of the year. We never really do this as a tradition, but it’s one I LOVE the thought of, and definitely a new tradition I want to start in my own home now in my twenties, and when I hopefully have a family of my own in the future. I think it’s especially appealing in this tech-filled world we live in, to sit around a table with the people you love, phones to one side, just playing a good old fashioned board game, and probably getting a bit too competitive after a few glasses of vino. I honestly couldn’t think of anything that sounds more fun in a festive home.
Now this is the big dog. If I write too much in the section my stomach is going to start rumbling, so I best keep it short and sweet. Food is a huge part of Christmas Day and is what makes the whole season so bloody EPIC if we are being honest. Whether it’s making your own mince pies for Santa on Christmas Eve, or the vigorous routine of who preps what for the big dinner, it’s always quality time and towards an end goal (of getting a food baby). So that being said, it’s so lovely to create some traditions out of that use the food as a means to spend quality time with your loved ones. And who doesn’t love a good baking session with Christmas tunes, or a good old cheese board? This one is win, win tradition, so have a think about what you love treating yourself too around Christmas and turn it into a tradition of yours with the people around you that love it too.
Maybe in a few years I’ll do a review and confirm some of the traditions of my own that I’ve put into place, and I’d love some inspo from any of you out there that have already got some of your own traditions going. Or even ones you’ve carried down from childhood.