The whole Santa shebang is proving somewhat interesting seeing as Thing One is incredibly unconvinced he exists, despite rather hoping he does, whilst being awfully crap at keeping his opinion to himself. On the other hand if you so much as hint at relaying any questionable behaviour to Santa, The Toddler turns on the full waterworks. Then there's the random Santa's dotted around that The Spawn have deduced that they're all fake cue a rather complex explanation from us about how there are so many children in the world and Santa is so incredibly busy that he couldn''t possibly be everywhere at once and prepare for Christmas Eve so he hires special helpers to help with his appearances, yet they're indeed sanctioned by Santa and carry his blessing. Phew.
Then there's the terribly virulent Elf on a Shelf fad that seems to be sweeping across the festive period. The idea appears to be a toy elf that arrived at your house for advent and comes alive at night when everyone is asleep, basically being a naughty little shit. I admit I struggle grasping the logic behind this, parents spend the entire of December instilling the necessity of good behaviour into their Spawn for Santa yet Santa sends them this little cretin who gets up to all kinds of bollocks and their bad behaviour is supposed to be funny and quaint? Oh the hypocrisy and mixed messages. It also appears to have kick started a competitive streak among parents seeing who can pin the most creatively naughty antics their elf (yes theirs, not really the children's elf at all, admit it) Besides any temptation that may have attempted to bewitch me into participating would be a dead duck seeing as the cynical spawn wouldn't buy the whole coming to life at night thing for a second.
I'm rather enchanted with the idea of Christmas Eve pajamas yet also a tad bemused, surely they'd be better being given at the beginning of December? I'll readily admit to genuinely not understanding the whole Christmas themed brand new pj's .... the night before Christmas?
So what are our traditions?
* On Christmas eve for tea, we have a takeaway. Preferably an Indian. The children love it and it makes me somewhat less sulky about all the cooking I have to do on Christmas day.
* On Christmas eve we track Santa on the computer, sprinkle reindeer food outside, light our christmas jam-jar lanterns to guide Santa to our home and leave out the prescribed drink and snack for him.
* We don't do stockings, neither did my parents when I was a child. I've never had the whole satsuma, toothbrush and new undies shenanigans. Instead, like me and my siblings, The Spawn leave out a pillowcase for Santa to fill with their presents. They leave it on the end of their bed, Santa brings it downstairs.
* Santa leaves an 'end of bed present'. Again this is stolen from my own childhood. It's usually an annual and gives The Spawn something to open when they awaken and will keep them occupied for a while.
* Nobody is allowed downstairs where all the presents are until everyone is awake.
* Again from my childhood, we eat Cadburys chocolate fingers as we open our presents.
* Boxing day dinner is always a miniature Xmas dinner made from leftovers.
* We have 'tree presents', another one from my childhood. This is one small token gift each that stays on the tree until New Years Day dinner, they will be set on the table with the cutlery and crackers.
That is about as festive as we get. If you think our Xmas traditions are scarce and scanty you should see our New Years ones...insofar as we don't have any. We don't celebrate new years eve.