I have written about my childhood xmas here. You don't need to read that post, just listen for a bit to this piece of classical music and you get the idea. This is what spells xmas for me in a million ways. I can smell my mother's beeswax candles and see the hissing sparklers that hung from the tree. I can hear us arguing about who gets in first when the door opens and I can feel the itchy lace collar of my dress.
Fast forward and I am with my Irish in-laws where xmas is something completely different. I have written about it here. Again, you don't need to read that post, just listen to this song. I can see my father in law singing it, while he shimmies into the dining room, cigar in hand. He reaches out to my little daughter and swings her around and around until she screams with delight. The room is crowded, dogs and kids, all the adults hold glasses of sherry, we wear paper hats and there is the smell of too much food.
Whatever you do for xmas,