Brits and Americans share a lot of Christmas traditions—such as bringing a tree indoors and hanging stockings in the hope that they’ll be filled with gifts overnight—but the first time I went to my British in-laws’ house for Christmas, I discovered a lot of traditions I’d never heard of before.
In my Christmas novella, Mine Under the Mistletoe, California-girl Ashley fulfils her lifelong dream of spending Christmas in London. If you can’t spend this Christmas in Britain, here’s how you can make your Christmas a little more British.
Christmastime is also known as panto season in Britain, the time when B-list (and C- and D-list) celebs find work as cross-dressers in the country’s theaters. Pantomimes are based on classic children’s tales, like Puss in Boots and Cinderella, but with lots of naughty jokes for grown-ups. The main character is almost always a boy, who’s played by a woman. Camp men don padded bras and strut around the stage dressed as older women.
Pantos are hilarious and probably my favorite British tradition—which is why some of my favorite scenes of Mine Under the Mistletoe take place at a pantomime performance of Jack & the Beanstalk.
Continue reading “Five ways to have a British Christmas”