I want to qualify everything I am about to write with this; I am aware that I am giving Ebenezer Scrooge a run for his money. The Grinch and I, we could be besties. I am basically grumpy cat.
I love Christmas. I really do.
I love everything about it, from Handel’s Messiah, a two and a half hour epic of classical music, to watching my son lose his mind opening presents with his grandparents.
I’m on board with pretty well every dodgy Christmas tradition you can name.
Fake trees, fake snow, fake snowmen.
Roast turkey and Christmas pudding despite the fact it’s 35 degrees in the shade.
Christmas movies (Charlie Brown’s Christmas anybody?)
Getting up at the crack of dawn with a raging hangover as you stayed up late wrapping presents from Santa in exactly the right paper the night before and over-indulged on the eggnog.
Baking 17 different kind of cookies that no one really eats because there was already far too much food.
But there is one tradition I just can’t bring myself to get on board with.
I'm never taking my kids for a photo with Santa.
I know. I just stole Christmas straight from the arms of my one-year-old. How could I possibly deny her a relationship with Santa?
I'm not taking them for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, I just could not be bothered. Shopping centres in December are bad enough. Just the prospect of hanging onto two impatient, annoyed, hungry children as we wait in the (epically long) queues makes me twitch. Trying to find a carpark. The Christmas kitsch everywhere, the fact that my children will 100% look like this when placed on Father Christmas' knee; it doesn't bear thinking about.