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It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, isn't it? Just 7 days and 15 hours (not that we're counting)... Are you in full-on decorating mode? Wearing out your credit cards and giving the postman backache? Trying to contain the excitement of children anticipating a visit from Santa Claus? Collapsed in an exhausted heap on the sofa?
Well, now is the time for indulging in our favourite parts of the festive season. So What's your favourite Christmas tradition?
Christmas with Mr Darcy author Victoria Connelly says, "To go for a walk on Christmas Day - it's usually wonderfully quiet and it's always so nice to get back into the warm afterwards!"
A Merry Little Christmas author Julia Williams says, "Carol singing. I love it. And as my oldest daughter plays the piano and sings am looking forward to singing with her and my mum on Christmas day."
Married by Christmas and Santa Maybe author Scarlett Bailey says, "Well it's Tunis Cake, but you can't buy them any more so this year I shall be attempting to make one! Anyone know how?"
My So-Called Christmas Carol author Tamsyn Murray says, "I love everything about Christmas but my favourite thing is settling down to wrap presents. I surround myself with gorgeous paper, ribbons and tags and sprinkle a little bit of love into each parcel, while Love, Actually plays on the TV. Bliss."
Winter Wonderland author Belinda Jones says, "Decorating the Christmas tree and then sitting in the living room when everyone else has gone to bed and just revelling in the magic world the fairylights created..."
Mistletoe in Manhattan author Talli Roland says, "My favourite Christmas tradition is putting together a yummy Christmas morning breakfast before opening the pressies. Everything tastes that much better with all the anticipation!"
Meet Me Under the Mistletoe author Abby Clements says, "Since me and my best friends were teenagers at school (so this year was our 18th!...cripes) we've had an early Christmas dinner and Secret Santa present-swap some time in December. We take it in turns to host, and cook, and it's a whole day event, with plenty of good food and fizz. It's always a brilliant day with a lot of laughter."
When I Fall In Love author Miranda Dickinson says, "I love singing carols. Growing up in church it's always held a special significance and my favourite service of the year is the candlelit carol service at my church. Magical!"
With Love at Christmas author Carole Matthews says, "It's the time of year for cocktails! I love to try out new ones each year. This year's is the Ritz 100 - vodka, grand marnier and peach schnapps topped up with champagne. I must remind myself not to have too many before I cook lunch!"
The Twelve Days to Christmas author Michele Gorman says, "My mother’s family came from Italy so baking has always been a big part of Christmas. We have many family recipes and I make dozens and dozens of cookies for friends (and for myself of course!). Our family favourites are butterballs (as the name implies, they are not a dietary cookie), cut-outs smothered in cheery icing sugar, chocolate pepper cookies, peanut butter cookies, and I always throw in a batch of chocolate chips, which come from my Dad’s side of the family."
So, we'll be baking and eating and drinking and singing and wrapping and decorating and walking ... and of course enjoying our families and friends.
What's your favourite Christmas tradition?