I have to confess that where Christmas is concerned I am a bit of a traditionalist. When I was a child we had the same things came out for decorating each year. We had a 'real' tree which was lifted from the garden each year - although I don't remember it really getting much bigger. What we certainly did have was the same ornaments on it. None of your plastic rubbish back in those days - the ornaments were glass and VERY breakable so they were treated with great care and when not on the tree wrapped in tissue paper until it was time again. At the most we had a dozen glass ornaments plus one little silver house - made out of cardboard I think and then covered with glitter (my favourite) and a few bits of tinsel draped around. It was wartime, mybrother was at the front - I don't suppose my Mum and Dad felt in the least bit like decorating.
For Christmas dinner we usually had a goose (a present from the butcher for my mother dressing the poultry for him) with all the trimmings. In the evening we played cards or dominoes or (if we could pursuade Dad who though it a daft game) tiddley winks. I had maybe three presents at the most and I don't ever remember my parents exchanging gifts - there wasn#t the money for a start.
Now the sky seems to be the limit with all things Christmas - stockings full of presents, a groaning Christmas table and decorations festooned everywhere. And that is the bit the drives me mad. Across the road from my bungalow the sitting room window is suddenly festooned with row upon row of blue flashing lights. I don't like flashing lights for a start - there is nothing subtle about flashing lights - but worse than that - BLUE flashing lights. I like my Christmas decorations to be red, green or silver. Blue is a cold, icy colour. I remember they drove me insane last year - well they are here again and at the moment I donot feel particularly Christmassy about them. Maybe they will grow on me over the next month.