My kind of Christmas

Typical Christmas Day routine?

As kids, my sister and I would always get up around 5am, pestering our parents with the famous question: “Has Santa been?” I’m glad to say that I’ve chilled out a lot since then. Now, my family tends to get together on Boxing Day instead, and I’ll spend the big day itself with friends. It’s a very relaxed affair: I’ll host, but everyone gets involved with the cooking. Though the meal usually ends up on the table three hours later than planned! We’ll open presents afterwards.

Any Christmas traditions?

My family wasn’t too big on tradition and I’m the same now. The dogs will be walked first thing in the morning and we’ll drink Buck’s Fizz at breakfast. The rest of the day happens as it happens. It really does take the stress out it!

Favourite Christmas TV viewing?

Considering I work in television, I’m a bit anti-TV on Christmas Day. If it gets switched on, I feel like we’re failing with the entertainment. Thank goodness for catch up TV and Sky+. I’ll try and record the big shows and watch them a few days later. Recently, it’s all been about Downton Abbey. I cannot believe this is our last Christmas with the Crawleys.

Favourite Christmas song?

I spent the first few years of my career working in radio. Believe me, when you have heard every Christmas song on repeat for the best part of two months every year, the novelty soon wears off! I think I’m still recovering from it all. The most festive songs for me now are traditional Christmas carols. You can’t beat a bit of ‘Once in Royal David’s City’.

Most memorable Christmas present?

When I was 10, Father Christmas organised a treasure hunt around my house that ended up in a brand new tree house, which I pretty much lived in for the rest of my formative years. I also remember being given a sandwich toaster when I was about 12. I thought it was a PlayStation until I unwrapped it. I’m still silently dealing with the disappointment.

Dream Christmas dinner?

As a vegetarian, one of the most common questions I get asked is: “What do you have for Christmas dinner?” Actually, there are lots of options to choose from! My favourite thing to make is mushrooms and stilton. I’ll fry mushrooms with a bit of white wine, add the stilton and bake until it bubbles. It makes a beautiful roast dinner – trust me! To drink, it has to be something sparkling.

The best thing about the festive season?

I have to admit, I used to be a bit of a Scrooge. But the older I get, the more I appreciate Christmas. Now that we have some children in the family, it’s great to see them getting caught up in the magic. It’s taught me that the best way to enjoy the festive season is to get involved and let your inner-child out. Sometimes, it’s the only way to cope!

Follow Ross on Twitter | @Ross_Hutchinson