12 steps to Christmas

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With Christmas fast approaching I thought it was about time to get everyone on the tinsel-covered bandwagon and into the Christmas spirit. I know not everyone is happy about it – you Grinches know who you are – but unfortunately for you ‘tis the season to make your lives a bauble-covered nightmare. Here are a few things that I love about Christmas and hopefully they’ll make your hearts grow three sizes too.

  1. The John Lewis Christmas advert – You know that when this baby premiers Christmas is on the way. Now I feel like I’m betraying my own love of Christmas by saying this, but this year’s offering didn’t impress me that much (I know, I’m sorry). I mean a little old man could not live on the moon and those balloons would never make it out of the atmosphere; I grant you a bear would never have an alarm clock either but I still get tearful about that one.On the plus side though,if I want a telescope for Christmas at least I now know that John Lewis sells them!
  2. Christmas Lights – There is nothing like trudging around town laden with Christmas shopping when it’s freezing cold and getting dark… and then seeing the Christmas lights switch on for the evening. For some reason it just makes the cold cheeks, frozen ears and numb fingers a little bit warmer. I also love going home and putting the Christmas lights on my house…and when I say ‘I’ I obviously mean my Dad. I send him up the ladder even though he hates heights – in that scenario I’m basically the Grinch and he’s Max, but you know Christmas needs must and at least I don’t make him wear an antler.
  3. Selfridges Christmas window display – Oxford Street is like my spiritual home. I wish Selfridges was too but sadly I’m on a student budget. However that budget can involve pressing my nose up against the Christmas window displays and coveting the shoes, handbags… and food – two years ago they had a window display completely full of gingerbread houses. If you can’t make it to Selfridges the next best thing would be doing the same at Harvey Nichols in town – the displays might not be as inventive but they’re still full of sparkly things.
  4. German Christmas market – Nothing like going down to the Christmas market in Millennium Square on a freezing afternoon in Leeds and trying an assortment of German sausages (don’t be cheeky now, you know what I mean). Oh and the Frankfurter Scheune (or what I like to call the beer tent) is definitely worth a visit; an afternoon, a stein (or two) –perfect!
  5. Christmas songs – So the radio is always playing them way too early but once December hits you can’t stop me putting some Christmas tunes on! And make sure at some point to tunefully slur along to everyone’s favouritedrunk Christmas song,Fairytale of New York: ‘The boys of the NYPD choir were singing Galway Bay and the bells were ringing out for Christmas Day!’ No just me? Okay.
  6. Christmas treats – Christmas is one of two times of year (as well as Easter) when you can eat chocolate for every meal and it will be acceptable – but if I offer you a Celebration remember that offer doesn’t extend to the Malteaser ones. Also I’m never sure with mince pies whether I actually like them or I’m just going with the festive flow, but you can only eat them once a year so why not?
  7. Christmas fancy dress – On my street on Christmas morning it’s a familiar sight to see an array of Santa’s racing down the road in our annual ‘Santa Dash’. If this is not a thing on your street I recommend organising it immediately!
  8. Christmas drink(ing) – Christmas Day is the only day of the year when it is completely acceptable to start drinking before middayand nobody judges you. 10am? Pop open the fizz!
  9. Christmas nights out – They’re unbelievable cold, especially when you don’t bring a coat because a. you don’t want to cover up all the sequins and b. you’re certain you’ll be wearing your ‘drunk jacket’ by the time you leave but heavily underestimate the sub-zero temperatures of the north. But really it’s all fun and games until the DJ cracks out the Michael BubléChristmas album and tries to remix it.I’ll see everyone at Christmas Fruity though, right?
  10. Christmas decorations – As we all know, procrastinating is a fineart, but you will never procrastinate more than when you’re cutting out the most creative snowflakes to stick on your windows. In first year my flatspent around 2 hours honing our scissor skills and came away with a flurry of beautiful snowflakes, which then stayed on the window until Easter.
  11. Christmas films – Buddy the Elf, what’s your favourite colour?There is no better Christmas film than Elf; we were all thinking it, I was just the one who said it. And if you don’t agree then you sit on a throne of lies. Also the likelihood of all eight Harry Potter films being on TV in the lead up to Christmas is very high – Sunday nights sorted.
  12. Christmas food – The best meal you will ever make will be the roast you make with your housemates in the lead up to Christmas. You will never put so much thought, shopping or money into any other meal you ever make at uni (possibly in your life, who knows). It takes precision timing, some professional chopping skills and you may argue over the best way to make roast potatoes, but when you’re stuffed full with enough food to feed all the elves in Santa’s workshop, you’ll know Christmas has come early.

Have a Merry Christmas everyone!

Imogen Sheldon

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