Twelve Days of Christmas, Day 5 - Elin Gregory

Today's visiting author is the awesomely talented Elin Gregory.

She is offering a $10 Gift Card as a giveaway. Leave a comment here to enter the giveaway, which will close 22nd December at 6pm, GMT.

Question 1.       What is your favourite Christmas movie? 

The Great Escape. Yeah, I know it’s not actually a Christmas movie but it’s always on and I always make the effort to watch it. It’s fantastic
Question 2.       What is your best Christmas memory? 

Coming back from church on a crackling cold midnight with every star blazing and the feeling that I was treading a path trodden for over a thousand years. That’s a lot of good will.
Question 3.       What is the best present you’ve received? 

A few years back my family clubbed together to track down and buy and extremely obscure book about the excavations at Olbia, a Greek colonial city in what is now the Ukraine. I was astonished and touched that they had gone to so much trouble.
Question 4. What is the best present you’ve given? 

One year my husband and I built an old fashioned rocking horse, complete with beautiful glass eyes, mane and tail and proper harness and constructed a big cardboard box to hide it. On Christmas Day the box was a HUGE success. The kids played with it for months.
Question 5.       Santa Claus – real or fake? 

Are we speaking historically or mythologically?
Question 6.       What is your favourite Christmas book? 

A Christmas Carol. All the others stem from it whether by emulating it or by consciously rejecting it. Also it’s good fun.
Question 7.  Do you like eggnog? 

What is eggnog? I see references to it all the time around Christmas but I’ve never seen it. It doesn’t sound at all appetising.
Question 8.       What do you eat at Christmas? 

Whatever I can be bothered to cook. I don’t like the traditional Christmas dinner, but we’re stuck with it on Christmas Day. However I do enjoy being creative with the leftovers. Bubble and Squeak on boxing Day is an absolute must.
Question 9.       Be honest, when do you put up the Christmas tree? 

Himself won’t have the tree in the house before Xmas Eve. A family tradition.
Question 10.       When do you open your presents? 

Before lunch on Christmas Day. I go and fetch my mother while himself puts the spuds in, give her a sherry and once she’s settled we start. 
Question 11. Do you have snow at Christmas? 

No, never. A bit on the ground occasionally, frost and sleet, but nothing like the Christmas cards. I think the expectation might come from the swap from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar in 1752 where we lost 11 days. There is often snow during the first week of January so maybe the memory of snowy 18th century Christmases put the idea into the minds of the Victorian writers who invented Christmas.
Question 12.       What is the best – all-time – Christmas song. Ever!  

Jona Lewie’s “Stop The Cavalry”. It never fails to make me gulp as I contemplate all those people who serving overseas, or having to work away from home, or who once had a happy home that they have lost, will be spending this Christmas holiday alone. Alternatively I like Don’t Let the Bells End by The Darkness because I dearly love a countertenor.


  1. I bet that rocking horse was amazing

  2. Great interview, thank you for sharing!

  3. Gotta love the wonder of cardboard boxes. If only they stayed so easy to please as they grow up!

  4. Cardboard boxes are always a hit with cats too. My sons cat will play with one for hours but ignores all the cat toys. :)

  5. We share the same favourite Christmas song! and I love your Christmas memory. I've had a similar feeling returning from Midnight Mass. Nothing like a starry sky to instil a feeling of awe and timelessness.

  6. I love Bubble & Squeak on Boxing Day, not forgetting the turkey and stuffing sandwiches for tea :D

  7. Eggnog is a creamy custardlike drink that is much better spiked with liquor, my preference is lots of rum. Homemade is better, out of a carton not so much.

  8. Ooh, like the thought of the Gregorian calendar shifting our white Christmas to January

  9. Great answers I'd completely forgotten Jona Lewie’s “Stop The Cavalry” wonderful song.

  10. My mum also uses a lot of leftovers for her Christmas dinners.

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  12. Great interview, thank you for sharing and the rocking horse sounded amazing. :)

  13. Never heard this particular Christmas song before. Thank you for the link =)
    humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

  14. The BOX. HaHaHa. How true. :-)

  15. I agree one year we used a big box to put their present in. (I can't ever remember what it was!) That box stayed around forever it was a fort, a house, a cave, a boat, etc., etc. Thank you for bringing back the memories!

  16. Ahhh the magic of cardboard boxes

  17. Cold meat, bubble and pickles! Yum.

  18. I like th Q&A. It is fun to read all the answers by the different authors :)
    Stop the Cavalry, yep i know that song i hear it several times every year (around Christmas) and i do agree that it is a good song but my all time favorite Christmas song is Christmas Time by Bryan Adams :)


    1. my email address should be ahpg(at)ziggo(dot)nl

  19. Love to read the answers to all of these questions.

  20. Seasonal Greetings and thank you for the giveaway :) I am also not fond of the traditional Christmas dinner and find alternative dishes, which also gives a break for those visiting over the holidays.