Friday, 20 December 2019

Top Tips For Christmas [Recycled]

Long time readers will know that I usually post some Christmas tips. I completely forgot this year [see Tip #1] But there are plenty of worthy offerings out there. Like the Scrunch test for wrapping paper, the Squint test for tree lights, and avoiding the Sniff test for leftovers. I'm being eco-friendly and recycling a post from many years ago, with a few modifications
FIRST TIP - don't get a stomach bug the week before Christmas which knocks you out for 6 days [typing this from my sick bed] 
SECOND TIP – try to avoid inviting ‘professional’ cooks to share in your Christmas repast. If you are the mother of small children, and are having to host the ‘Family Dinner’ on 25th Dec, then your relations MUST understand that kitchen standards may slip a little, when there are little ones to be looked after! Delia Smith will not be dining with us this Christmas. I'm telling you in advance, so don't act surprised. Since Ms. Smith won't be coming, I've made a few small changes:

[1] Our path will not be lined with homemade, paper bag luminaria. After a trial run, it was decided that no matter how cleverly made, rows of flaming carrier bags do not have the desired welcoming effect.
[2] The dining table will not be covered with expensive linens, fancy china or crystal goblets. If possible, we will use dishes that match and everyone will get a fork. Since this is Christmas, we will refrain from using the plastic Peter Rabbit plate and the Santa napkins from last Christmas.
[3] Our centrepiece will not be the tower of fresh fruit and flowers that I promised. Instead we will be displaying a hedgehog-like decoration hand-crafted from the finest construction paper. The artist assures me it is a turkey.
[4] We will be dining fashionably late. The children will entertain you while you wait. I'm sure they will be happy to share every choice comment I have made regarding Christmas, wise men and the turkey hotline. Please remember that most of these comments were made at 5:00 AM upon discovering that the turkey was still hard enough to cut diamonds. As accompaniment to the children's recital, I will play a recording of tribal drumming. If the children should mention that I don't own such a recording, or that tribal drumming sounds suspiciously like a frozen turkey in a tumble dryer, ignore them. They are lying.
[5] We toyed with the idea of ringing a dainty silver bell to announce the start of our feast. In the end, we chose to keep our traditional method. When the smoke alarm sounds, please gather around the table and sit where you like. In the spirit of harmony, we will ask the children to sit at a separate table. In a separate room. Next door.

[6] Now I know you have all seen pictures of one person carving a turkey in front of a crowd of appreciative onlookers. This will not be happening at our dinner. For safety reasons, the turkey will be carved in a private ceremony. I stress "private" meaning:
Do not, under any circumstances, enter the kitchen to laugh at me.
Do not send small, unsuspecting children to check on my progress. I have an electric knife. The turkey is unarmed. It stands to reason that I will eventually win. When I do, we will eat.
[7] Before I forget, there is one last change. Instead of offering a choice between 12 different scrumptious desserts, we will be serving a Christmas pud from Lidl, garnished with whipped cream and small fingerprints. You will still have a choice: take it or leave it. 
Delia Smith will not be dining with us this Christmas. She probably won't come next year either. I am very thankful.


  1. That is hilarious!!! What is the Turkey hotline all about? I am so relieved to be dodging the 'Cooking Christmas Dinner' bullet again.

    1. The turkey hotline operates in the USA. If you are anxious about cooking your turkey, they have operators on hand 24 hrs a day over the holiday season to give advice. Last year they had over 200,000 callers!!

  2. I laughed so hard! Thank you for this post!

  3. Hope you recover soon and don't have to cook a big Christmas dinner!

    1. Fortunately my wonderful daughters are in charge of the Family Feast

  4. The frozen turkey in the tumble drier has made my day!
    Wishing you a happy and blessed Christmas and New Year x

  5. So funny Ang! Sorry you have had a beastly bug, get better in time to 'carve' the turkey!

    1. Thank you Elizabeth - this afternoon the GP has prescribed medication which appears to be helping.


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