Our family’s Christmas traditions

Christmas dinner - turkey.
Christmas dinner - turkey.

Hello and a happy Christmas!

My favourite day of the year is Christmas Eve. All the shopping is done, the pressies are wrapped, I’ve finished work (albeit only for a day or two) and can just look forward to seeing my family, eating loads and having a rest!

Allan Blackburn, Owner of GB Antiques Centre and Lancaster Leisure Park

Allan Blackburn, Owner of GB Antiques Centre and Lancaster Leisure Park

There’s something special about Christmas Eve – maybe it’s just the anticipation for many people of what the big day itself will bring, especially for the children.

I’m not getting any younger and a while ago my doctor put me on a diet. Aided by my daughter, who always has a watchful eye on what I’m grazing on, I do have to take a bit more care of myself these days. So Christmas is the one time of year when I can let things slide a little bit and enjoy the wonderful food that all the festivities bring.

We’ve gone out for Christmas dinner for over 20 years now. As we are only closed at the antiques centre for one day a year, our priority on Christmas Day is to be together as a family, rest and not cook!

We always have a fabulous meal at the Marriott Hotel, Broughton, which is so close to our home we can walk there and back – at least burning a few Christmas calories off!

On Boxing Day the centre opens for business and at some point one of us goes in. The afternoon is spent with the family again, while my amazing team carry on with their hard work.

My family don’t like me working too long on Boxing Day. They keep telling me I’m getting older and take on too much stress. This is certainly the view of my daughter, Dawn, who works alongside me in the office, but the real truth is there is nothing she likes better than playing board games.

She sees Christmas as the one time of year when all the family can sit around the table relaxing and playing games together, and if I work apparently I throw out the numbers in the teams!

We always have a big dinner on Boxing Day, usually of three courses. I like to wash up and help clear up after Gloria has done all the cooking, so invariably there isn’t much time left to play games and Dawn always feels a bit put out!

Whatever you are doing and whoever you are with, have a very happy day.