I might not be sure what I want for Christmas, I can, however, tell you what I don't want.... This may or may not be a list of presents I have received in the past. Husband, Mother, Mother in Law, Friends. Look. Away. Now.
Fanny always encouraged her viewers to think big, and to think glamorous, but she was mindful of limited time and limited budgets. World War II and rationing were not distant memories for them, nor were the days before labour-saving home appliances like washing machines and vacuum cleaners.
Although it doesn't stop there. The gossip has now taken on a life of its own. It's like a bad (secretly amazing) Katy Perry song. You wake up with a napkin stuck to your face and a host of notifications and texts. Each one more deplorable than the last.
With plenty of free time on your hands over the Christmas break, there's not better excuse to pop down to your local London theatre.
A guide for books to give the Lefty in your life this Christmas: A superb read therefore over the 12 days of Christmas would be the poetry collection...
The unnecessary consequences of Christmas; the promotion of the importance of 'purchasing' above anything else. After all, at a time when wages are lower than ever in relation to our living expenses, is it not time to simply say that enough is enough?
Much as I love Christmas, it can be arduous enough without chaining yourself to the stove while all your friends and family are whooping it up with the mulled wine and cheap cava. So I've kept these recipes for party snacks and nibbles as quick and easy as possible.
It is very easy to get caught up in the whirl of Christmas parties, presents and social plans or to feel resentful of the expense and the family obligations. But for many people, winter can be a lonely season and Christmas is especially hard.
For many people, the biggest day of December begins the morning after Santa pops down the chimney. But, for an array of pop stars, Facebook campaigners, charity singles and chart watchers, attention is focused on another day - the day the Christmas Number One is confirmed. The race for the Christmas Number 1 is as festive as turkey and mulled wine. And this year, with the big day falling on December 22 (and BBC Radio 1's counting down the Top 40 from 4-7pm), it is likely to be as spicy a race as we have seen for some time.
Poverty and parents who struggle always have and always will impact on children profoundly, which is why it's so important these families get the help they need from organisations like ours.
At least three things we all have in common are birth, death and the difficulty in accepting death - that of others or our own. Anniversaries and major Bank Holidays can be particularly difficult. So how can we help ourselves to cope well?
My friend from Brazil tells me that much as he loves our traditional seasonal music, he feels it's always sad too. I think he has a point. Even in more recent Christmas songs there's a pang, isn't there? Note how it's always Cold Outside, the weather outside is frightful, and yet...if you really love me so... well then... the boys of the NYPD choir will still sing Galway Bay.
Imagine waking up on Christmas morning with the same energy and excitement that you had as a child... I believe that this is something we can all experience, if we consciously make an effort to connect with a sense of inner peace amidst the surrounding chaos.
As Christmas fast approaches, it's important to get planning now and prepare in advance to ensure a stress-free festive season. We all know that feeling when something unexpected happens on Christmas day, but there are simple measures you can put in place to prevent this - you'll be amazed how easy they are! And it's not just the kitchen that requires some TLC - keep you and your guests safe and warm at home by bleeding radiators, hanging heavy curtains to block out the cold and setting the room thermostat at 21°c (70°f). Here are my top tips on how to avoid Christmas disasters in the kitchen.
It's Sunday morning and I'm standing in a park gazing at a sea of red and white. Hundreds, nay thousands, are dashing around all dressed as Santa - and I'm one of them. Have I gone mad? You may think that from my straggly white beard and ill-fitting jacket.
The pacing of the film is a big improvement and the narrative wastes no time in getting into gear. The opening scene set in a dank, fetid drinking hole, shows Gandalf convincing Thorin to take a Hobbit with him on his quest to reclaim his homeland from Smaug.