First off we always aim to post the bulk of our Christmas cards on December 7th. This was my Gran's birthday. It seems early enough to not be silly (I mean who wants their cards arriving the first week of November?!) and not so late as they'll get caught up in the big Christmas rush. I say the 'bulk' of our cards posted, because inevitably there will be some I need to put letters in that haven't happened yet or foreign ones that need me to calculate specific postage. I'll hand deliver a fair few around the village and normally aim to do this when I have the parish magazines to deliver.
Another tradition we have is to always open one little present on Christmas Eve. This started when I was a pre-teen and lacking in the patience to wait to open my presents. I made a deal that if I sat up on Christmas Eve past midnight then technically it was Christmas day and I could open a present. I tell you some years I had matchsticks holding up my eyelids just so I could open something! Since then the whole sitting up past midnight thing has been dispensed with. But Mum and I usually open one present on Christmas Eve. In fact Christmas Eve might be my favourite day of the holiday. I love it when I come in from work. The last chores of delivering presents etc has been done. I switch on the tree lights, light some candles and cosy up in front of the TV with a proper Christmas movie or two.
Last year opening a present on Christmas Eve
In a similar tradition I usually give Chief a small silly gift to open when he comes down before Christmas. (Sorry no photos he'd kill me if I did!) Even though we have known each other for 9 Christmases we are yet to spend a Christmas together. We have made plans. Each time thwarted by him getting ill (he's had pneumonia or bronchitis as well as regular flu over Christmases past!), bad weather or his father being in hospital. I'm not holding out on seeing him this Christmas. He can't really leave his step Mum alone on Christmas day. He has two brothers living on the doorstep but one is likely to be working so won't be around and the other ...well lets just say not all families think of others at Christmas and leave it at that.
So what Christmas traditions do you have?