22 December 2011

My Favourite Christmas... by Scarlett Bailey

Welcome back to my Christmas 2011 feature! As you know, I've asked lots of authors to write something about their favourite Christmas, and I've been lucky to have a great response. Today, I have the pleasure of welcoming the lovely Scarlett Bailey!

My favourite Christmas was when I was a little girl, I must have been about six because my mum and dad were still married. I had a very seventies and eighties childhood, never really saw much of my dad because he got in from work after I went to bed and always seemed to be locked up in his shed every spare minute. And to make matters worse he wouldn't let me see what he was doing! I remember feeling very dejected and let down. And then that Christmas, as I crept downstairs early that morning to see what Santa had left me, I found out what Dad had been up to. My dad had been building me a dolls house in secret for all of these months! It was beautiful, a perfect Georgian mansion, almost as tall as me and decorated with wallpaper, carpet and lights that worked, as well as furniture that he had made himself. It was a gift full of love and care, and even at that young age, I think I sensed that, which made me treasure it all the more.  I have never been so delighted and surprised by a gift since, and remembering lying on the floor playing with that dolls house is still my fondest memory of Christmas.

Nowadays I still love to recreate that particular retro Seventies Christmas vibe! No fashionable or tasteful decorations for me, unlike Katy in The Night Before Christmas, who is fond of gingham and wicker, I love tinsel, sparkles, lots of lights, and all the colours all at once. I even still have some of the decorations that went on the tree when I was a child.

I adore Christmas carols, and Christmas songs, so I will have Bing on the i-pod crooning 'White Christmas' in the morning, while I'm preparing Christmas lunch, and then, after eating as much Christmas food as I can (without bursting) I will settle down on the sofa with my friends and loved ones, a very large glass of Bailey's and get ready for a movie. You can't go wrong with The Sound of Music, Miracle on 34th Street or It's a Wonderful Life, but my very most favourite film to watch on Christmas day is Gone With the Wind. Three hours of a girl called Scarlett kicking butt and snogging Rhett Butler. What better to round off a perfect day?

This year I'll be with the people I love, mostly burning or undercooking stuff, while my mum tells me where I'm going wrong, and I'm looking forward to having a house full of all my best people, after all, that's what Christmas is really all about, isn't it? Being with the people you love. Oh and lots and lots of lovely presents, too. Obviously.

You can read my review of Scarlett's debut novel The Night Before Christmas here. You can buy the book as a paperback or as an eBook now!

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