It’s that time of year again, it’s CHRISTMAS!! Time for spending time with family, eating lots of delicious food and giving and receiving presents.
Every country has its own unique traditions for the festive period but how do we celebrate Christmas in England?
It all begins on the 1st December when children and even some adults open the first door on their advent calendar and continue to do so every day until Christmas day on the 25th December. Behind the door is a chocolate or a colourful picture related to Christmas. It has begun…
As soon as December is here you will see many British homes decorated inside and out with tinsel, lights, holly, more flashing lights, wreaths and most importantly the tree! The Christmas tree is the main star of everyone’s homes at Christmas. It is where all of the wrapped presents go before they are torn open on Christmas Day. The tree is decorated with baubles, tinsel, lights and a star or angel is placed on top.
Then there is the food. Oh the food! So much food to eat that by the end of it you’ll be close to bursting! Leading up to Christmas you have mince pies at every opportunity, mulled wine and Christmas cake. Christmas day is the main event for food where we prepare a turkey with ‘all the trimmings’. This is a big feast usually consisting of 3 courses. For the main meal we eat roast turkey, vegetables including the dreaded Brussel sprout, stuffing, gravy and pigs in blankets. Pigs in blankets are little, chipolata sausages wrapped in bacon, yum yum, they are delicious! Dessert is usually a traditional Christmas pudding with brandy sauce and if you have space then you devour all the chocolate you received for Christmas.
Of course in England the Christmas Day dinner wouldn’t be complete without the pulling of the cracker. The Christmas cracker is a small cardboard tube covered in a brightly coloured twist of paper. Two people pull each end until the cracker ‘pops’ and out comes a little present, a slip of paper with a joke to read out and a paper crown. Everyone must wear the paper crown to eat their dinner!
Christmas Day is the main day of the festive celebrations in England. Unlike some countries this is the day we gather with family for the main ‘feast’ and to open presents which Father Christmas has left in the night. The night before, on Christmas Eve children typically leave a mince pie and a glass of milk for Father Christmas plus a carrot for Rudolf. In the morning children wake up very early to see what he has left for them in their stockings and then everyone opens their gifts from each other. It is a day to chill out with family, eat, play board games and watch Christmas films.
From everyone at ACCORD ISS we hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and wish you a very happy new year!