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  • carolineboxall

Family Christmas Traditions

I love hearing about family traditions. Here are some of ours.

1. Advent calendars: My mother-in-law bought a Christmas tree advent calendar for my eldest daughter's first Christmas and filled it with tiny gifts. When my second daughter was born, my mother-in-law bought a Father Christmas advent calendar, but this time she asked if I would mind filling the advent calendars. Twenty-six years later I’m still doing it for all five children! That’s 120 tiny gifts, but it's a tradition.

2. Church. Sadly this is the first year we won’t be able to go to the Christmas service. For Christmas 2020 we are making our own family Christmas service with carol requests (mine is “Come and Join the Celebration’), a sermon, a prayer and a reading. One of my children has asked to do the collection (no ulterior motives there I’m sure!)

3. Twiglets: For some reason we always have one of those barrels of Twiglets. It lasts the whole year because nobody likes them at any other time. Actually nobody likes them at all, but it’s a tradition.

4. Lasagne: About eight years ago somebody dared to admit they didn’t like turkey. Everyone else enthusiastically agreed. We decided lasagne was much more delicious, could be prepared weeks in advance and didn’t require much washing-up. So lasagne and salad has been our Christmas lunch ever since – I highly recommend it.

5. Crackers: These are homemade and contain the worst jokes available. This is my favourite:

Two fish in a tank.

One fish turns to the other and says, "How do you drive this thing!"

We each have a challenge too - try fitting as many Abba song titles as you can into an ordinary conversation!

6. Quiz: We always have a Christmas quiz. But we also made one every week through lockdown.

This video made by Katie during lockdown is our favourite quiz round ever! (Answers at the end of the blog.

Before you watch the video read this excerpt from It's Raining in Moscow and I Forgot my Umbrella. Billy is describing life on the dementia floor of Autumn Days care home. Maybe try Katie's quiz on someone you know with dementia, it might trigger some memories?

I’d like to watch football matches on the big TV in the lounge but it’s usually showing old films like Singin’ in the Rain, Mary Poppins or Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and I’ve seen them so many times I know them off by heart. On the dementia floor they forget they saw the same film the day before, so it doesn’t matter. Strangely they can remember things from a long time ago and every time ‘Singing in the Rain’ comes on, Beryl says, “Ooh, I love that film. When I was nursing, I saw that one at the pictures (that’s Oldie speak for cinema). That Gene Kelly was such a dish (Oldie speak for good-looking) and all us nurses dreamed of dancing with him!”

For my final blog of 2020 I want to thank everyone who has subscribed to my website. I’d also like to thank those who have bought (and read) my book. Most of all, thank you to the people who have taken the time to put a review on Amazon. I look every day to see if anyone has added a review and I am thrilled to bits when a new one appears!

I wish you all a very Happy Christmas.

PS If you would like to read my book it's called It's Raining in Moscow and I Forgot my Umbrella. Available on Amazon in paperback and on Kindle (click here).

To subscribe to my blog click here.

Answers to Musicals Quiz: The Sound of Music, Aladdin, Mary Poppins, Bohemian Rhapsody, Singin' in the Rain, La La Land, Wizard of Oz, Les Mis, Wicked, Kinky Boots, Hairspray, Chicago, The Greatest Showman, High School Musical. Bonus: Up

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