Lucky me! I had two Christmases last year! Did you know that Christmas in Russia is celebrated on the 7th January? People often get surprised when I say it. However, we don’t celebrate it the same way as Europeans do. New Year is the biggest celebrations for us, and this year I met 2018 with my family in a very cozy cottage by the lake in Finland. But first, let me tell you the story about my first English Christmas!

I’ve never celebrated Christmas, even though I’ve been living in Finland since 2011. I didn’t feel like it was my holiday and, most importantly, I had no one to celebrate it with. But I was used to the fact that Finns celebrate Christmas on the 24th of December, the loneliest day of all if you are all by yourself. However, I was very surprised to hear that the Christmas Day in England is on the 25th! I was about to list it as the 6th weird fact about England, but this time Nordic countries were the weird ones. That’s why on the 24th, when Scandinavia was exchanging presents and eating like it was the last day on Earth, we just went to a couple of pubs with friends without going crazy to feel good in the morning and survive through the Christmas day.

24-year-old and a Christmas stocking

And the special day came. In the morning, we put our OnePieces on and went to the lounge where the Christmas tree and all the presents were waiting for us together with my first Christmas stocking! I was so happy! I immediately started opening small stocking stuffers one after another guessing what was packed inside. But I believe that it’s allowed for a 24-year-old lady to behave like a kid. It’s Christmas, ffs!

The more the better

In the UK, it feels like locals don’t care about wasting wrapping paper (just kidding). They tend to buy many presents, wrap every single one of them separately and write the card to give a hint on what’s inside. I was a good girl last year and found lots of presents from Santa under the Christmas tree. The biggest one was the professional lighting set for photography and video shooting! My YouTube channel will finally show videos of a better quality! By the way, if you haven’t seen my videos yet, go and check them out here! And don’t forget to subscribe to my channel!

Cocktail party…in the morning

After opening all the presents, you rush to get yourself ready for breakfast and the cocktail party shortly after it. Guests came over before noon, and we popped up a few champagne bottles and offered some snacks. You’d better eat enough for breakfast if you don’t want to get tipsy too soon! It was lovely to have a leisurely party with much chit-chat and laughter. However, the Christmas dinner couldn’t cook itself, so ladies moved to the kitchen. I truly enjoyed cooking and learning secret recipes! The dinner turned out great, and I was happy to learn how to make the Christmas dinner properly, as we have big plans for Christmas 2018!

They set the dessert on fire

I’m used to lighting candles on birthday cakes, but pouring brandy on the top of pudding and setting it on fire was something absolutely new for me. I was scared that we would burn the house down, but luckily the flame stopped and we were allowed to take a piece of delicious Christmas dessert. However, it wasn’t the last part of the dinner. Brits also have some cheese later after the dessert to complete the ceremony.

Pram race or what the hell is that

On the boxing day, we went to see the pram race. Have you ever heard of those? The first pram race was run in the early 1960s and the event proved extremely popular! The idea is to make a team and choose a theme together to make costumes and a pram accordingly. Teams push their prams from one pub to another and get absolutely pissed along the way. The fastest team wins, the weakest participants don’t survive and never cross the finish line. The race starts in the morning, so you can imagine what happens to the participants in the early afternoon!

This year, I saw many creative and pissed men dressed as playboy bunnies, Baywatch characters, disco stars from 80s, live road signs, chickens and many others. I’m sure it’s much more fun to be a part of this event, but I was still laughing like crazy even just watching creativity meeting drunkenness.

My first European Christmas was magical! As well as the big day, we also had several Christmas parties, visited relatives, ate a lot, laughed loudly and simply enjoyed ourselves. I want to thank the Blake and Mardle families for making my Christmas holidays unforgettable!