Except that one time we had a white Christmas in Japan and spent the day skiing and drinking things with cats on them. I think we went to a British pub and ate pizza for dinner, and then spent the evening trash talking over a foosball table.
I was determined to be festive, so I found a little tree and fold-out christmas decorations that wouldn’t take up too much room in my suitcase (the room I needed to bring back copious amounts of Japanese stationery and bento boxes, my standard Japan purchases). It was fun, and memorable because it was so different.
I’ve spent Christmas in lots of places over my lifetime, so there’s never really been a location that’s tradition as an adult. I’m starting to incorporate things that will be the traditions of our young family, but we’re pretty flexible about where they happen.
This year we will hold the beachy tourist place for a few days over actual Christmas in favour of visiting our family in Brisbane. We’ll be in a hotel on Christmas morning, and I shan’t let that stop Captain Festive from taking over and spreading Christmas Cheer in every corner. I’ve spent the last couple of weeks squirrelling away some travel-safe stuff to create a special place wherever we should find ourselves. I had a few requirements though – I wanted them to be as much as possible not disposable (which meant they had to be small enough to not take up too much suitcase room, as we’re only taking one, and they had to be something I wanted to look at for years to come if they’re to be part of our permanent setup), something interactive for the kids to be able to help with, and some creature comforts for me, who feels it’s not Christmas without rum balls.
What we’re taking for festivity-related festivity:
- felt garlands (we made our own from a kit found at Target)
- felt stockings (as above – the kids decorated, and I sewed) that Santa will be popping a couple of goodies in on Christmas Eve
- Christmas colouring-in pages (activity that also doubles as decorations when done!)
- Felt cards that double as stand-alone decorations (the girls also helped with these, just in case you thought I was drunk when I glued them)
- A Christmas tree that lays flat when you pack it, but slots together neatly for a 3-D version
- A red tablecloth (not pictured) to put under the Christmas tree – most hotels have a coffee table, so this will help it become our shrine of excess (had to buy a plastic one which isn’t ideal but I think I did pretty well overall).
- A festive candle
- Santa hats – mandatory for turning any situation into a christmassy one. They don’t take up much room.
- Familiar food – plenty of rum-less rum balls going on at VMHQ to take with us and gorge ourselves stupid on.
- Washi Tape for last minute everything – hanging, decorating, making pictures with. It’s so indispensable and seemingly harmless.
- A sense of humour and/or adventure because with those you can make any situation a festive one. We don’t wait for fun, we BRING IT!
Do you spend Christmas in a traditional place every year? Or does it not matter as long as you’re with people you love (or there’s rum balls?)