As the ‘Big Day’ approaches, I have compiled my top 24 Etiquette Tips for Christmas. Some of them are old traditional tips, while others have a modern twist, but used as a combination they will hopefully help enhance your Christmas experience.
1. Christmas Social Media: Dress in something that will not haunt you later on other people’s Facebook pages or social media profiles! Your chum might be sliding down the bannisters in their underpants thinking they are riding Rudolph through a winter wonderland, but please don’t post photographs unless you have their blessing! Avoid Jingle Bells ringtones on your phone, you are not the local shopping centre.
2. The Spirit of Christmas : Show goodwill to others. Take your children to meet Santa Claus. Extend Christmas invitations to all of the family, even if it is like the gathering of the United Nations, stay strong! Allow the children to help decorate the Christmas tree, no matter how unstylish the result may be, it will be a fun experience for one and all.
Ladies and gentlemen, let's also remember do not rearrange your host’s baubles, once they have been placed on the tree they stay there until the decorations come down.
3. Mulled Wine: Always make your own or if restricted with time then you can now buy some very good quality mulled wine, but let's not let the children get hold of this otherwise they may resemble elves from your worst nightmares and not Santa's little helpers. You can buy non- alcoholic mulled wine, or mull some grape or apple juice.
4. Christmas Wrapping: Gift wrapping should be an enjoyable experience! Put on some carols and take time and care in doing this, you’re not wrapping a joint of beef in the local butchers!
5. Christmas Jumper Etiquette: Let's remember when Aunt Peggy comes around wearing ‘that’ jumper, we still tell her how lovely she is.
6. Christmas Presents: I f you want to keep it safe, I recommend giving gifts of scented candles, or a potted plant. A nice bottle of wine or something fizzy never goes amiss. Remember to always show appreciation for a gift. If you don’t like it be prepared to put on an acceptance speech fit for the Academy Awards.
7. Shake, Rattle and Roll: Remember, we don’t shake presents as you may break a family heirloom. Let’s not forget that it’s better to give than to receive. No matter how much you may disagree with that view, a warm smile and a sweet thank you goes a long way. The other dilemmas with presents is when and if you should re-gift! You don't want to give your mother- in-law that lovely scarf she gave you last Christmas which has been lurking in your cupboard ever since. Also, remember to take the price tag off the gifts, especially the 99p ones!
8. Christmas Crackers: Let's not peek inside, or swap the crackers around. Hosts may know which cracker has the toe clippers inside, so let's not give these to your brother or sister and keep the silver notepad for yourself! At your Christmas dinner don’t p