The Christmas Chronicles: Jen's Tales and Traditions from England

Charistmas Cards Jennifer Kray Poinsettia The Christmas Chronicles Zig Clean Colors

I'm excited to be part of this year's Christmas Chronicles Blog Series, where we'll explore holiday traditions from around the world! 

Meet the Maker: Jen from Cornwall, England

Greetings, I'm Jen, and I make my home in a picturesque hamlet nestled within the heart of Cornwall, England. Cornwall is a ceremonial county known for its unique identity and rich traditions. Interestingly, Prince William holds the title of Duke of Cornwall, adding a touch of royalty to our corner of the world.

My professional background revolves around procurement and strategy, but life took an unexpected turn when a serious illness led to a bone marrow transplant a few months ago. Today, I proudly serve as the operations manager for Picket Fence Studios, and I've come to realise that the global village is indeed alive and thriving!

Now, join me as we explore a few Christmas traditions and the history of this wonderfully quirky yet traditional country, where the holiday season unfolds with its own unique charm and a touch of British eccentricity.

The Project: Handmade Holiday Joy from England
For me, nothing says holiday cheer like creating something by hand, and today, I'm sharing an eye-catching poinsettia card.

It all started with a piece of green paper, layered with darker green shades of Distress Oxide Ink to create a bold, dramatic backdrop. The poinsettia at the center was brought to life using Zig Clean Color Brush Pens. To add a festive touch, I incorporated the Swanky Christmas Sentiments and a sprinkle of sequins.

I'm sharing this card with the hope that you'll find joy in its creation, just as much as I did. 

Words and Wishes: English Holiday Greetings

1. Happy Christmas - In England, 'Happy Christmas' is the traditional way to wish someone a joyful and festive holiday season, reflecting the warmth and friendliness of English holiday greetings. 

2. Warm wishes for a happy holiday - This phrase exemplifies the English penchant for spreading goodwill and warmth during the holiday season. 

Cornish Holiday Greetings

1. Lowena Nadelik! - Translation: Merry Christmas! in Cornish, a perfect way to wish joy during the festive season.

2. Goslowen a'n Gwethlow! - Translation: Get Your Tinsel On! in Cornish, inviting others to embrace the holiday spirit

Tinsel and Traditions: An English Christmas Journey

The festive spirit in England doesn't end on Christmas Day. We continue the merriment with the delightful quirks of Boxing Day on December 26th. It's not about sparring with relatives; it's a magical sequel to Christmas Day, where the joy and surprises keep flowing.

On Boxing Day, many families embrace brisk countryside walks, savoring the crisp winter air. It's also a day for extending the holiday spirit through acts of kindness and giving. Historically, people would provide boxes of food and essentials to those in need, a tradition we uphold today with charitable acts and donations.

So, whether you're relishing the last mince pie, embarking on outdoor adventures, or spreading goodwill through acts of kindness, Boxing Day is the perfect encore to our English Christmas celebrations. It's a day filled with surprises, laughter, and ongoing merriment – a delightful gift unwrapped after the main event of Christmas Day.

Cultural Cuisine: A Taste of English Holiday Traditions

And speaking of Mince Pies!  Another beloved English holiday tradition is the humble mince pie. These bite-sized treats are uniquely English and have been a holiday staple since the 13th century. A mince pie consists of a buttery pastry crust filled with a spiced mixture of dried fruits, suet, spices, and sometimes a touch of brandy or rum. Whether enjoyed with a cup of tea or as part of the grand Christmas Day spread, these little pies hold a special place in our hearts, embodying the spirit of Christmas with every delicious bite.

Click here for Paul Hollywood's Mince Pie Recipe

The Christmas Cracker: An iconic English tradition that adds a playful touch to our holiday celebrations is the Christmas cracker. This quintessentially British invention has been delighting generations of families around Christmas dinner tables. With a gentle tug, the cracker bursts open with a cheerful 'pop!'. Inside, you'll discover a trio of festive surprises: a colourful paper crown for regal fun, a small toy or trinket for a touch of wonder, and a festive joke or riddle to ensure laughter throughout the Christmas Day meal.

Together, the Christmas cracker and mince pies are two uniquely English traditions that add flavour and fun to our holiday celebrations, reminding us of the rich tapestry of customs that make Christmas in England truly special.

Sounds of the Season: Festive Music from England

The phenomenon that has taken the country by storm, known as Christmas Number 1's, is a sought-after title that defines the musical landscape of the holiday season. 

A pivotal moment in the history of Christmas chart rivalry unfolded in 1973 when a legendary showdown took place, featuring none other than Slade and Wizzard. The unmistakable charisma of Noddy Holder belting out 'IT’S CHRISTMAAAAS' in Slade's 'Merry Xmas Everybody' catapulted it ahead of Wizzard's 'I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday.' to take the top spot. 

Little did they know, this clash of the glam-rock titans sparked a cherished tradition that endures to this day. The intensity of the competition even led to a memorable moment when Wizzard, fueled by frustration, covertly infiltrated Top of the Pops to playfully pelt their rivals with custard pies.

Here are some notable Christmas Number 1's:

1966: Tom Jones - Green Green Grass of Home
1973: Slade - Merry Xmas Everybody
1984: Band Aid - Do They Know It's Christmas?
1994: East 17 - Stay Another Day 
2009: Rage Against the Machine - Killing in the Name
2019: LadBaby - I Love Sausage Rolls

My prediction for the 2023 Christmas Number 1 is 'The Fairytale of New York' by The Pogues. This forecast carries special meaning as we remember the late Shane McGowan, the band's lead singer. It's a poignant reminder of how music has the enduring power to honour and celebrate those who have inspired generations of music lovers during this festive season.

Gifts and Gratitude: A Very Merry Christmas Giveaway

As a token of our appreciation, we're excited to announce our Christmas giveaway! One lucky winner will have the opportunity to choose any 10 products from our website.

Entry Details: To enter, simply leave a comment on any of the blog posts in our series. Each comment on a different blog post counts as a separate entry so be sure to comment on each blog post!

This giveaway is open to participants from around the world, but you must be at least 18 years of age to enter. The entry deadline is December 26, 2023, at 23:59 CST. The winner will be randomly selected from all eligible entries and announced on our blog on December 29, 2023.

If you're the lucky winner, please contact us at jen@pfstamps, and we'll guide you through the next steps to claim your prize.

Festive Farewell

As we wrap up this journey through English Christmas traditions and celebrations, I'd like to extend a jolly good sign-off to all our readers. May your holiday season be filled with warmth, joy, and the timeless spirit of Christmas.

Here's to a very merry Christmas from my family to yours. 

Sending hugs,


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  • Anonymous on

    Your card is so pretty and I love the sparkles! Also loved reading about your traditions. We lived in England for a time so it made me a little homesick.

  • Melissa Leftrick on

    I have always wanted to visit England! Sounds like a wonderful place to live! Thank you for sharing

  • Natalie on

    Your card is amazing. Loved your story as well

  • Tina C on

    Thanks for sharing! Food & music definitely defines the holiday season for me, too. Great card…your coloring definitely made it eye-catching for sure.

  • Brenda K on

    That gorgeous green background just makes the pink poinsettia pop

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