The latest participant in my Countdown to Christmas feature is author Carmel Harrington who's answering a few festive questions...
What’s your earliest or favourite Christmas memory?
Actually one of my earliest is when I was probably about 4 or 5 years old. I shared a room with my brother John who is a year younger than me. We had bunk beds. I can remember us both lying in our beds whispering that we had to go to sleep before Santa arrived, but too excited to close our eyes. We had been warned, if Santa sees you are awake, there will be no presents! Anyhow, Santa must have heard our excited whispers and to warn us that he was on his way, we heard sleigh bells ringing outside our door. I cannot express the excitement we both felt. Santa was on his way. John climbed down from his top bunk and jumped in with me and we both fell asleep quickly before the big man in red came into our room. Now, if I hear sleigh bells ring, it reminds me of that moment.
What are you looking forward to most this Christmas?
It has to be the children’s faces when they see their Santa sacks. This is the first year that Amelia (almost 4!) really gets Santa and she is beyond excited. It’s going to be really special. Rog, my husband and I are like kids ourselves planning every detail.
Do you have any family traditions that you always follow?
Yes, I’m such a traditionalist and Christmas is abound with them in our house! Every Christmas Eve we always go to Christmas Eve Mass, then come home and the children will sprinkle reindeer food over our front lawn, that lights up to show the reindeers where to land. We’re very helpful aren’t we? Then, the children will put out the carrots for Rudolph on our front porch and the milk and cookies for Santa. We’ll have a supper of hot sausage rolls and mince pies. Once the children are asleep, Rog and I will have a glass of wine and sit down to watch my never missed Christmas Eve movie – It’s a Wonderful Life!
Do you do the whole traditional Christmas dinner or have alternative?
Yes, we are turkey and all the trimmings every time. Rog has suggested a few times that we try goose, but I don’t know, I love Turkey! I’m not sure it would seem like Christmas without it.
What’s your favourite Christmas song or carol?
Oh Holy Night. Makes me well up every time I hear it. Beautiful!
What film do you hope to curl up and watch on Christmas afternoon?
It will be a children’s movie – animation of some description! We’ll record all the grown up stuff for when the kids are asleep!
Do you have a favourite Christmas book that you read again and again?
How the Grinch stole Christmas by the legend that is Dr Seuss! I loved this book as a child so it’s a joy now to share it with my own children.
Which singer/band would you like to turn up carol singing at your door?
The easiest answer I’ve ever had to give to a question – I’ll have Mr Buble please.
Which celebrity would you like to snog under the mistletoe?
I’ll have to respectfully pass on this question! I’m a married woman lol…. However, I think if Michael Buble was serenading me at my front door, Rog would probably let me have a quick kiss!
If you could spend Christmas anywhere in the world, where would it be?
We have a dream in our house to spend Christmas in Disney one year while the children are still young, so Florida please!
What’s top of your wishlist this Christmas?
You know what? I just want everyone to be healthy. I don’t want to sound all beauty pagenty, but honestly, Rog’s family and my own have had a huge run of bad luck healthwise in 2012 and 2013. So I’m wishing that all of those who’ve had it rough get a well-earned break this Christmas. We’ve all spent far too long in hospital corridors. Enough already!
If you could do one good deed for someone less fortunate than yourself this Christmas, what would it be?
Hmmm…. That’s a tough one. I hate to think of anyone on their own on Christmas Day, so I would hope to reunite somebody with their long lost family.
Now a quickfire questions to close:
Tree: real or artificial? Artificial. Only because our tree goes up December 1st and a real one wouldn’t last till Christmas!
Fairy Lights: White or Multi-Coloured? Both! We have Red and also white on our tree!
Drink: Mulled Wine or Bucks Fizz? Bucks Fizz. Drink hell Mulled Wine! We were given two bottles of mulled wine last year and they are still in the drinks cabinet!
Food: Mince Pies or Xmas Pud? Oh Christmas Pudding! With whipped cream!
Games: Monolopy, Trivial Pursuit or something else? Charades! We always seem to end up doing this every year. Oh and Wii often gets switched on at some point, especially if the Harrington family are around. Competitive lot my in-laws lol.
You can connect with Carmel via the following links:
Facebook: Carmel Harrington