I read the Ultimate Christmas Q + A over on the lovely Life of Angela and thought I would give it a go. I don’t usually do these sort of posts but I enjoyed reading Angela’s so I hope you’ll enjoy reading mine and if you fancy doing it yourself, it’s not too late!
What is your favourite Christmas film?
Absolutely 100% the incredible ‘Elf’ with Will Ferrell – I could watch it at any time of the year! I walked into a classroom at school last week and it was on, some of the kids hadn’t seen it before and were laughing so much, I just wanted to sit and watch it with them!
Have you ever had a white Christmas?
Yep, when I was young, although not as many as you would think growing up in England.
Where do you usually spend Christmas?
Until moving to Bangkok, I spent every Christmas at my parents even when I had my own house. Last year, we made the tough decision not to go back to the UK as December is such a good time to travel out here so we went to Australia which was amazing, this year we will be spending the holiday in the Maldives.
What are your favourite Christmas songs?
Elton John, Step into Christmas is my favourite – if you’re not familiar, you’re definitely missing out! – but I love the classics like Mariah, Wham and Slade too!
When does your family put up your Christmas tree?
At home, my mum puts it off as long as possible so usually mid-December. This year, we finally bought a tree here in Bangkok which went up the first weekend of December.
Do you open presents on Christmas Eve?
Nope, we open them on Christmas morning but we really take our time doing it, only one person is allowed to open a present at a time. One year my mum tried to get us to wait until after lunch but that wasn’t very successful!
What holiday traditions are you looking forward to most this year?
Since I’m not going home I don’t think there will be any traditions, maybe my new tradition should be Christmas skyping (wifi permitting!)! Traditions I’ll miss are the annual Christmas Quiz (that my dad spends months preparing) that we usually do with extended family on the evening of Christmas Eve and the Melton Mowbray Pork Pie and Bucks Fizz Christmas breakfast (it’s a Leicester thing)!
Who decorates the Christmas tree?
We all used to do it when I was at home, now the other half does the lights because I hate doing those and then we both put on the decs although I do often move some of his around! I went kitsch this year on the decorations…
Is your Christmas tree fake or real?
Fake – I’m not sure, even if you could find one here in Bangkok, how long a real tree would last in 30-degree heat!
Do you like giving gifts or receiving gifts?
Both – we tend to not send Christmas presents now that we’re not home but take presents in the summer when we head back to the UK. I miss all the planning and searching to find the perfect gift for people at Christmas though. I don’t really like surprises so have been known to issue a Christmas list, I like to think it’s helping!
What is your favourite holiday treat/meal?
It has to be Christmas lunch – turkey, pigs in blankets, braised red cabbage, stuffing and all the trimmings. I know people complain about Turkey but I love it! Boxing day leftovers with chips and coleslaw is my second favourite Christmas meal!
What is the best Christmas gift you’ve ever received?
That is the hardest question! I have been so lucky to receive so many amazing, generous presents over my 32 years but I think the one that stands out for me came last year when my best friend flew to Bangkok from the UK for the weekend (seriously…3 days) because we weren’t going home. It was a total surprise and hands down the most incredible Christmas gift.
What would be your dream place to visit for the holiday season?
I would love to go to New York for Christmas, it just looks so magical! I did look at going this year but the husband vetoed it as its such a long way to fly from here!
Are you a pro present wrapper?
Yes – when I lived in the UK I would make my annual pilgrimage to Paperchase in November to choose my wrapping paper and then the decorations, ribbon and labels for the presents, every year would be a different theme. I find wrapping quite relaxing so would stick a Christmas film on and wrap away. Cool wrap and cards aren’t widely available here so I’ve had to reign it in now I’m in Bangkok!
What’s your most memorable holiday moment?
Last year, being on a catamaran in the middle of the Whitsundays in Australia, eating a turkey lunch, drinking champagne and pulling crackers with the eight best strangers we could have hoped for then snorkelling with sea turtles in the afternoon.
Do you make New Years’ resolutions?
I try to but I don’t usually stick to them. This year, I’m going to go for something I might actually achieve like say no to plastic bags and straws.
What makes the holidays special for you?
Usually, I would say being with family, but based purely on recent Christmases I would have to say the incredible places we have been lucky enough to spend it.
Are you a late Christmas shopper?
God no, I like to be done by the end of November if I’m doing present buying UK style!
Do you like having your Christmas gifts kept as a surprise?
I hate surprises but at Christmas, it’s rude to ask so I go with the flow!
Have you ever peeked to see what your present was?
I remember having a hunt around when I was younger but I soon realised my parents were always one step ahead on the hiding the gifts front!
Does your family have a special holiday recipe that you make every year?
Not that I can think of, my last couple of Christmases at home we had taken to drinking sloe gin with champagne which is delicious!
Have you ever gone Christmas-caroling?
Not properly as in knocking on people’s doors although growing up in a small rural village I have experienced people knocking on our door which is lovely. If I’m back in the UK, we usually go to church for Midnight Mass to sing a few carols.
What tops your Christmas tree?
This year, a pug with wings and a halo!
When do you start getting excited for Christmas?
Being in Bangkok makes Christmas a little different to home, it almost creeps up on you although they do go all out for it here so I suppose from late November.
Why do you celebrate Christmas?
I celebrate Christmas because it’s part of who I am and where I’m from. I have to admit that I don’t take Christmas as seriously when I’m not going home as I really do feel that Christmas is about being with your family and loved ones. Last year I was ok, but this year I am feeling sad that we’re not going to be at home for the holiday. My sister and her boyfriend are flying out just after Christmas so I will get my family fix then and who knows where we’ll be next year!
Have a wonderful Christmas everyone and a fabulous new year!