‘Tis finally the season to be jolly and skint falalalalalalalala… but that’s a problem for 2023 us.

Whether you’re planning a winter getaway, piling into your nearest pub for a cozy mulled wine around a crackling fire, or hunking up at home with your electric blanket in tow and a mountain of choc until January, the magic of the festive season is simply unmatched.

As twinkling lights appear in windows and we begin to countdown to the main event, here are 20 ways to get into the spirit of things, because we all know the build-up is superior to Christmas Day itself. Merry Christmas, filthy animals!

1 Prepare for Twiglets to become your entire personality.

2 Huddle round your first mulled wine of the season. We are 90% cinnamon at this point.

3 Watch The Holiday and recite it line by line… “Don’t blow away.”

4 Take 187 hours to choose a real Christmas Tree…

5 Only to go for the first spruce you set eyes on.

6 Take an oath to wear Christmas pjs and Christmas pjs only from here on out – ‘Tis the season of comfort and joy and you take the brief very literally, as you should.

7 Mooch round a Christmas market. Festive spirit: activated.

8 Wonder if your SO will do the honorable thing and get you a sausage dog this Christmas.

9 Have the annual family squabble about who’s hosting this year.

10 Curate the perfect artisan cheese board, piled high with melty baked camembert, fruity chutney and crackers.

11 Book in for your obligatory festive mani…

12 And it takes 85 years to decide, only to settle on: red. Ground-breaking.

13 Force yourself to wear a coat, scarf and gloves despite being a casual 15 degrees outside.

14 Make the treacherous journey to the Monica cupboard or the loft to dig out the decks. Is it even Christmas if someone doesn’t trash the tree, step on a bauble or tangle up the fairy lights?!

15 Go on the obligatory ‘big’ festive family walk, even if it is only 1,000 steps round the block because that post-roast slump hits hard when you’re 30+.

16 Start adding booze to every dish you make for the sheer hell of it. Brandy butter, Christmas pudding, cereal…

17 Break the *only* rule of Secret Santa by telling anyone who’ll listen who you got.

18 Binge Emily in Paris – it’s the perfect background tv for present wrapping.

19 Do your best to channel Nigella in the kitchen but realize you’re destined for mee-cro-wah-ve meals only.

20 Watch the King’s speech and sob into your very own (paper) crown. No one does a rundown of the year quite like Queenie.

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