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Article in images

Going against tradition at Christmas


Emily, 28, photographer, Swansea

Like everyone else, I spend Christmas with my family, we have a huge meal, we put up decorations, light candles, etc... but we don't give each other presents.

Nothing, not even small gifts. This is our tradition.

My parents decided this after my 13th birthday, when I was old enough to understand that presents aren't the only things that count.

I have to admit it was a bit hard to cope with at first. But now I'm used to it and I even feel a sense of pride going against the consumerist tide.

Christmas has now taken on a real meaning for me, the point of it is to be with my family and friends, not to spend, spend, spend.

When I have children, I'm sure I'll do the same with them, once they stop believing in Father Christmas.

The funniest thing is that when I tell people about it, they always feel sorry for me. I might not be getting, but I'm not spending a fortune either.

Alexis, 34, consultant, Ipswich

I don't like Christmas and I never celebrate it with my family because we're not very close.

So after several years of miserable moments in restaurants or being alone on my sofa... I decided to start organizing a party with my friends!

The idea is simple: whoever wants to come can come with whomever they want. 

In the end, between those who don't want to spend the day cooped up with their family and those who live on their own, there ends up being a good 12 or 15 of us.

The idea is for people to get together so they're not on their own and can have some fun.

It's basically dinner at mine with a Christmas tree, except that at my place, people can leave their family problems at the door.


Christmas 2011 : Xmas ideas and inspiration from
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