My parents had Christmas so easy….didn’t they???

Surely they did??

Our Christmas as kids was pretty simple. Through my hazy rose tinted glasses at any rate. Probably didn’t feel that simple to my parents . Same financial pressure , same pressure to make the kids happy. There just didn’t seem to be so many little extras.

It was kind of basic our Christmas but oh I did absolutely adore it.

We’d watch The Snowman on Christmas Eve , presents on Christmas morning (after our dad had played some kind of pantomime scrooge , pretending to take aaaggggeeesss to get ready to go downstairs and see if ‘he’d been’ ) Have a huge Christmas dinner (after my mam had barred everyone from the kitchen whilst she created her masterpiece!) , board games , a film then another load of food under the guise of the Christmas tea buffet (a tradition I have since adopted for us )

It sounds so very simple, but was Christmas the most exciting time as a kid ?? Absolutely.

Laying Christmas Eve too excited to sleep but knowing you really have to , awaiting true magic to happen is just something never replicated as a grown up!!

I absolutely adored Christmas as a kid . It just seems like it was a little less busy back then.

Things my parents never had to do :


Seriously elves making a mess all over the house?? My mam would have had a fit! She liked our place clean and tidy thank you very much!!Flour snow angels all over the kitchen floor? she’d have rounded up the little buggers and put them in a cage till they could learn to behave)*

*Disclaimer – my sister and I were never put in cages till we could learn to behave I promise. Mainly because I was born impeccably behaved , and well my sister was cute enough to be able to get away with her nonsense.


(then book it 3 months in advance)

Now no one wants their kid to see a crap Santa , that is a magic of Christmas ruiner!

My mam took my sister and I to queue in Alders for an hour if she was feeling fancy. Bransholme centre if feeling less so!! -Job done ?

When in years past checking out santas for small girl I’m looking at garden centres? What’s the gift quality like? Are there ACTUAL REINDEERS????


Again mess??? Litter ?? not a chance!!


I bloody love Christmas crafts , small girl is a fan too!!

We love making christmas crackers (although we do buy a box too because i am not having Christmas pass me by without getting my hands on a fortune telling fish!!) , salt dough decorations (one time our scented versions will actually work) , tree ornaments?

Hobbycraft at Christmas is our idea of heaven!

I do know that everyone doesn’t feel the same way about crafts. I know some parents hate it and fair enough it’s a messy , frustrating with the very small ones , time consuming business. All I’ll say is I never remember my mam having to glitter herself into a festive meltdown because HOW CAN YOU RUIN YOUR KIDS LIFE BY NOT MAKING SALTDOUGH WITH THEM!!!!Or thats how the pressure feels at times!!

We used to get a pack of those cheap paperchains that you licked to get them to stick together…..only they never did!!!


Obviously we have small girl – masterchef extraordinaire!

Shortbread Christmas trees , melted snowman cupcakes , rudolph muffins she’s up for all that , it makes her happy. My mam ONE years made butterfly buns . My sister and I are still traumatised by the taste , the texture and the whole occasion. I blame this entirely on why I don’t like cake. Bless my mam she wasn’t a natural baker – as I am not.


Winter Wonderland , Christmas markets , festive concerts , going to chop down your very own tree (may or may not be a thing)

We had a Christmas disco and fair at school (parents didn’t even have to show up , just send you off with your 20p in an envelope and all was good!)

I guess the point I’m making is that Christmas as a kid for me was the best best thing ever ever ever, even a bit simpler. Maybe we could all do to take a breath and realise we don’t have to do ALL the things in order to make Christmas a goer. Christmas is going to be magical for the little ones nevertheless.

I love all the Christmas fuss , crafts and elves and all that nonsense . However if we don’t make Winter Wonderland Christmas isn’t going to to be a disaster!!

Also I have to confess to a bit of a hunch….my mam seemed to have less pressure to do all the festive fuss when we were kids , however if she was still alive now you can bet your bottom dollar she’d be knee deep in glitter and elves and Christmas Eve boxes for the grandkids – mess or no mess!!

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Musings Of A Tired Mummy

46 thoughts on “My parents had Christmas so easy….didn’t they???

  1. Love this post, so true.As a kid in 80s I remember our pantomine, school party and our Christmas day. Wow I am planning all the various activities now so I’m not stressing as much. Does not help my wee 1 is 6 on 2nd January. Bring in the chaotic but fun stress ahead xx

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  2. Not so sure, I remember my sister asking for a certain kind of toy monkey, my mum went everywhere trying to find it, she eventually succeeded, on Christmas morning, when opening the present said “I don’t know why I wanted this monkey!” You can imagine my mum’s thoughts #triamphanttales@_karendennis

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  3. I couldn’t agree more, I have fantastic memories of Christmas as a child and we had none of the many luxuries our kids have today. I am all for keeping it under-stated in our house. My girls are 4 and 2 and I have never brought them to a Santa’s grotto! But you’re right, they still have a fantastic day! The less pressure the better! #globalblogging

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  4. There does seem to be a lot of pressure on parents now to make Christmas the best day ever. We are going to a Christmas market at the weekend and we may do some Christmas baking, but we like to keep it simple and just relax and enjoy the day with the family.

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  5. Quite the contrast! I’m sure that Christmas now is just as special for your kids now, especially with all of the extras and efforts you put in. I’ve been feeling the same way lately, nostalgic for simpler times and traditions with my parents. Great post! 🙂

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  6. True, the magic of Christmas was there even as we were growing up, or else we wouldn’t have these lovely memories. Now, it’s magical no doubt, but far too commercial. Which makes it stressful and expensive. Simple family christmas traditions make for the best – and most memorable – Christmas. Thanks for linking up with #itsok

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  7. So true. It was way easier back in the day. Elf On The Shelf is the one that made me crazy. I loved it and I hated it. The kids adored Elmer (our elf), but ugh I was forever forgetting to move him then it was a mad dash in the morning while dad kept them occupied in the other room.
    x, Julie

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  8. Oh my gosh… I absolutely LOVE your post!! Yes, yes and yes. I think our mums must have been on the same page, because like your day – ours was simple. But blinking brilliant and so exciting. There was none of this booking Santa in September or it would be fully booked malarky! Just good old fashioned store santa, Christmas music and movies… lots of board games and that dinner buffet in the evening!! LOL. Thanks for joining us for the #dreamteam xx


  9. I much prefer Christmases today! We have adult children and no grandchildren yet, but we have homemade cocktails and extravagant food, dancing and lots of animated game playing. We stretch out present opening all day. Sure beats the Christmas board game with reluctant parents of my childhood. And it feels all the better today for it! xx Maria


  10. I loved my childhood Christmases too. Heinz tomato soup or prawn cocktail, loads of sprouts, heaps of gifts, love and family and Mass too which made the true meaning of it all centre-stage. I do know mum got stressed out and one year downed tools announcing she would no longer do Christmas dinner and we would go out to restaurants. Enjoyed those years too. Too much about commerce and money-making these days with too many mums expected to deliver miracles whatever the finances available leading to stressed out New Years with heaps of debt which does nothing for a Happy New Year. My Mum like yours would have thrown herself into whatever new trend came along too. She loved Christmas although always said Easter was her favourite special day. You have taken me right back to childhood and the “Has he been yet?” wind-ups and board games and so much food that I could not possibly match or eat these days! Thank you! #BlogCrush


  11. You know what? I don’t actually know what my mother’s Christmas was like when she was a kid because I never asked and she never told me. Oh wow, now I have to find out if it was better than my own. I just remember wall to wall presents for all of us kids and waking up on Christmas so ready to open as many as possible! Then there would be a big Christmas celebration at my grandparents house and I remember all the love and warmth from it. Now I totally have to ask her about her childhood Christmas.


  12. I’m with you so much on this. Also ties in without my current guilt and disgust at how we have turn into horrid consumerist plagues, killing our planet. Lol. Sounds dramatic but I’m guilt tripping myself daily and praying everyone would just return to a life more simple.

    Have an amazingly simple and fantastic Christmas 💋 #BlogCrush

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  13. Christmas really is a magical experience for kids. I spent my childhood in the Philippines. Our family traditions include going to San Fernando Pampanga to see the giant colorful Christmas star lanterns. We would also go to the Christmas carnivals in Star city and Payanig sa Pasig. As a family we would perform a special Christmas song or dance number in front of the church. Such happy and exciting memories. #blogcrush

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  14. How lovely your Christmas sounded.
    I don’t do the naughty elf thing either but my daughter sort of did in her own way- hiding things and saying it was the elf.
    I agree we don’t need to overdo it for Christmas to be special. #Blogcrush

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  15. I don’t know about easier. I think it depends on the family. My aunt would work two jobs around Christmas to make sure we had a lot of presents under the tree. She would also get up super early to cook a big breakfast, then she would start on dinner after the presents were opened. As a kid though, yes, it was easier. I didn’t have to do much on Christmas Day.

    I don’t do the Elf or a shelf. Our family had just missed that craze when it started. I do have a few traditions I’ve carried over to my kids but I will say it is different now. It does seem much busier than when we were growing up. #GlobalBlogging

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  16. The Elf on the Shelf has really taken us all down a notch or two. And then, you go to the bookstore and you see huge displays of the dreaded little figure! Ugh! Wishing you and yours all of the very best! It will be a good one ❤ #dreamteam xoxo

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  17. Hey Kelly, back again with #blogcrush love for you and your post – thankful that our Elf on the Shelf went to a new home some years back, and really happy we never fell for the Jewish version, Mensch on a Bench! Oy Vey! ❤ ❤ ❤

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  18. What a fab post! You are absolutely right – we DON’T need all the extra stuff (even though there is a societal pressure to do it all). You’ve made me think about my own childhood christmas memories and that baking, elf, crafts, even visiting santa – we didn’t do any of that stuff. It was just about being together as a family. Thank you for the timely reminder #blogcrush

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  19. My comment would be so similar to Lucy’s. You have helped me remember my more simple childhood Christmas and how it was still tremedously exciting. I loath the elf on the shelf idea and refuse to buy into that! I think every few years some one comes up with a new thing for us to spend money on – now it’s the wretched carrot family in Aldi! The problem is sometimes we worry that our kids won’t be happy unless we do what everyone else seems to be doing – we don’t want to be left out of all the fun. But I firmly believe we can teach them to enjoy the more simple things and the special moments together, as well as the real reason for joy at Christmas time in the first place. 🙂 Merry Christmas btw!! #blogcrush

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