1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Don’t like either I’m afraid, can I have a nice cup of tea instead please?
2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Wraps and puts them under the tree. Unless it’s another #13.
3. Coloured lights or white on tree/house? White on tree, no outdoor lights.
4. Do you hang mistletoe? It’s never been a tradition in our family.
5. When do you put your decorations up? At the last minute.
6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? My mother’s bread sauce.
7. Favorite holiday memory as a child? Standing in front of Our Lady’s grotto during an outdoor Midnight Mass, holding lit candles and all heads bowed in silent prayer when a drunken wag passed by on his way home from the pub and shouted “You’ve forgotten to pay the electricity bill again then, Father?” Or the time my mother quizzed us mercilessly on who had been snooping in their bedroom for hidden Christmas gifts. We all denied it vigorously until she produced a half-eaten jam sandwich she’d found under the bed.
8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? Can’t remember when but it was undoubtedly one of my evil brothers.
9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Rarely. Sometimes after midnight we’ll open a small gift to keep up going until the morning.
10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Until a few years ago with decorations I’ve been collecting from various parts of the world for many years. But I stored them in my mother-in-law’s attic and they disappeared when we sold the house and moved her to a nursing home. So I bought a much smaller tree and started collecting again. But it’s not the same.
11. Snow, love it or dread it? Love it.
12. Do you know how to ice skate? Yes but haven’t for many years.
13. Do you remember your favorite gift? A fishing rod for himself smuggled unseen in the back of the car from here to Wales.
14. What’s the most important thing about the holidays for you? Seeing family at home in Wales.
15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? My mother’s trifle eaten on Boxing Day.
16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? See #14.
17. What tops your tree? A pretty little cream and silver winged angel. Will take a picture when the tree is up.
18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Definitely giving, especially with the grandchildren being so young.
19. Favorite Christmas Song? Stop the Cavalry by Jonah Louie. But all Christmas tunes should be banned from the wireless and in-store soundtracks until 18 December.
20. Favorite flavor of Candy Canes? Never tasted one but I’m guessing they’re similar to the British stick of rock sold at the seaside in which case I’ll pass thank you.