After reviewing some of my posts over the year, I realise that although I like to think I blog quite openly and honestly, I haven’t really shared much information about ME. I’ve written about my pregnancy and about Pickle and what we get up to, but you’re only really getting half the story. I’m not sure I’ve really opened the door into who I am and this is something I’d like to get a bit better at during next year. For today though, thanks to Emma from Sophie, Ella and Me, I’ve got a set of Christmas related questions that might give you a bit of a light-hearted insight into my world. You can read Emma’s answers here.

What’s your favourite Christmas movie?

It’s GOT to be Santa Claus: the Movie – you know, the one with Dudley Moore and John Lithgow. LPD and I always watch it on Christmas Eve and this year won’t be any different. It’s the one film that kept me believing in Father Christmas when I was little. Watching and believing, believing and watching.

Have you ever had a white Christmas?

I really don’t think so… I think we had a snowy Boxing Day one year, as my family always go for a walk up the Clent hills on Boxing Day and that year only LPD and I, my Mum and Dad made it up as everyone else was worried about slipping on the ice/driving down the country roads. It made for a glorious walk though as it was so quiet up there, and we got a GREAT table in the pub (usually, we’re all squished up in one corner!).
Christmas market mugs

Where do you usually spend your holiday?

We’re lucky because all of our immediate family live in fairly close proximity to each other – meaning we can see both LPD’s family and my family on Christmas Day, whilst waking up in our own home without too much manic travelling. The past few years we’ve tended to see LPD’s family in the morning and then spent lunch time with mine although this year we’re spending Christmas Eve with LPD’s Mum and then Christmas Day with just my family.

Every year, I count my lucky stars that we’re in the wonderful position of not having to choose a geographic location for Christmas at the expense of one side of the family. It’s amazing really that we’re able to see both sides with relative ease.

What is your favourite Christmas song?

Oh, this is a tricky question. Mainly because I’m RUBBISH at remembering who sings what. I like whichever song it is where half way through someone yells in a weird voice: ‘It’s CHRISSSSTMAAAASSSSS!’. You know the one, right? I like that because it always reminds me of my younger brother.

Do you open any presents on Christmas Eve?

No, we’ve never been Christmas Eve present-openers. Mainly because I think it’s nice to wait until Christmas Day itself, and where possible, I like to open presents in front of my family who have given them to me – a nice shared experience!

Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer?

Here’s a test for me… Donner, Dancer, Prancer, Blitzen, Comet, Cupid… there’s two more main ones isn’t there? And then Rudolph I guess. Erm… Dasher and Vixen! Is that right? Oh my goodness, did I do it!

Which holiday traditions are you looking forward to this year?

Definitely Boxing Day! I wrote a little guest post for Mummy Fox about our Boxing Day tradition of going for a walk up Clent and in all honesty, I prefer that to Christmas Day. But this year, I’m looking forward to experiencing Christmas through the eyes of Pickle and I’m sure every little aspect of it will take on new meaning. I think there’ll be a lot of playing with wrapping paper and enjoying sleepy snuggles on the sofa with a little glass of mulled wine.
Clent hills walk Boxing Day

Is your Christmas tree real or fake?

Fake. It’s always fake in my household, I’m afraid. One year I’d like to venture into the real tree world but in all honesty, the thought of vacuuming up all the needles and having to dispose of the tree afterwards kinds of puts me off. I know, Bah Humbug!
3ft Christmas tree

What is your all time favourite holiday treat/food/sweet?

Well, LPD’s is definitely Chocolate Log (I’ve never heard someone go on about wanting a particular food so much! We’re even having a Chocolate-Log-Off this year: we’re buying one and my parents are buying one and we’re going to contrast and compare). I’m not sure what mine is… except maybe mulled wine. And I do quite enjoy a bit of Christmas pudding too.

Be honest, do you like giving or receiving gifts better?

I definitely prefer MAKING presents, when I can. So it’s a bit sad for me this year as I’ve not had the time to make a single gift this year (I’m sure much to my friends and family’s delight – there’s only so many handmade presents you can genuinely enjoy!). There was the year I made brownies for everyone. And then the following year I made those gifts in a jar, with all the layers of ingredients for brownies. Another year I made handsewn sock teddies! Oh, and I had a glass painting phase too. This year, I’ve been too busy making, growing and feeding Pickle. 
Handmade snowman Christmas
A few years a go, my Mum implemented a £1 present challenge where we all had to buy each other a present costing only £1. It was great fun! I really enjoying scouring the shops for bargains and trying to get the most thoughtful gifts I could for just a quid. We all had so much fun opening them and it really made me realise that you definitely don’t have to spend a fortune to have a good Christmas or enjoy your presents!

What is the best Christmas present you ever received?

Oh, this is a tricky question. One of the first things that springs to mind was when LPD bought me a little digital camera when we first started dating. I’d been going on about wanting one for ages and I twigged he may have bought me one when he started to get a bit flustered that I might just buy one myself. It was a really lovely gift to open, and one that gave me years of memories to look back on. Of course, although not technically a Christmas present, being proposed to on Boxing Day in 2013 was pretty damn special too.
In terms of excitement though, I reckon the best present was when my parents bought and built my brother and I a wendy house in the garden! It was HUGE and I really can remember peering out the patio doors and spotting it for the first time.

What would be your dream place to visit for the holiday season?

For me, Christmas is a time to spend at home, so for Christmas Day and Boxing Day I’ll always want to be at home… but then I wouldn’t say no to a break at Center Parcs inbetween Christmas and New Year!
Family portrait at Center Parcs

Are you a pro present wrapper or do you fail miserably?

I’d say I’m a pro-present wrapper for standard boxes but anything even slightly irregular shaped and I usually just resort to a very makeshift cracker-type wrapping creation. Not very classy.
Christmas tree wrapping

Most memorable Christmas moment?

Well, it’s got to be my Boxing Day proposal! I’m not known for my brevity, so if you’d like to have a read about it, take a look at my blog post for Whimsical Wonderland Weddings. Other memorable moments include the time I spent Christmas in Australia visiting my best friend who’d immigrated. I was 17 years old and my Mum had packed me off with a little suitcase filled with my Christmas presents. On Christmas Day, we all took it in turns to open a present (very different to my family where opening presents is a bit of a free-for-all). I opened about 8 AA batteries, each individually wrapped, one after the other. When I questioned my Mum about it, she said she had visions of me not having very much to open so wanted to send something that was small but gave me lots to open and she thought batteries always come in handy. Thanks, Mom! It really made me chuckle.
Weirdly, my most memorable childhood Christmas memory was probably the year I woke up at 2am in the morning with a big nose bleed (very unusual for me). I had to bribe my brother with the promise of 50p to turn the light on as we shared a room and he was closer to the light switch on the bottom bunk.

What made you realise the truth about Santa?

What truth about Santa? … Jokes. Erm, I’m not sure. I remember my brother and I sitting my parents down and asking them to tell us the truth but I’m sure they still didn’t really ‘spill’ the beans.

What makes the holidays special for you?

This year will be a very special Christmas for us, our first with a baby. I’m trying to keep my expectations low as I think sometimes it’s easy to ‘hype’ up Christmas and you can end up feeling disappointed if it’s not as ‘Pinterest-Perfect’ as you imagined and that feeling is just intensified as a parent. I’m just intrigued to see what Pickle makes of it all, and looking forward to him charming the pants off everyone like he usually does. I really can’t wait to see him enjoy his first Christmas dinner. I think that will be my favourite!
Christmas with a baby
So there we have it, a little insight into my favourite Christmas traditions, memories and expectations. The idea of the #Christmas tag is to nominate other bloggers to take part, but in all honesty, I know I’ve left it quite late in the day so… I’m not going to tag anyone else but set an open challenge for anyone who’s reading to pick your favourite question and leave your answer in the comments below. I’d love to hear your answers and get a little peak into your Christmasses too.