It's a right royal knees up in Sandringham, and with the royal family celebrating Christmas together this year at the Norfolk estate, we thought we would run through their schedule for the 25th and their annual traditions.
It is Prince George's first royal Christmas and though the tiny tot may not know what is in store, EntertainmentWise has all the details about Christmas with the Queen this year. From what time they sit down for Christmas dinner to who gave Prince Charles a white leather toilet seat cover, find out all the gossip from the royal household below.
Christmas Eve - the grand present exchange
The presents are wrapped, the turkey is prepped and the guests are on their way to Sandringham; the royals country estate in Norfolk. With a strict protocol to follow, the guests travel to the venue on Christmas Eve with most junior royals arriving first with their seniority increasing as time goes on. Princes William and Harry with Kate Middleton and Prince George will be the last guests to arrive as they form a welcoming party for the Queen and Prince Philip.
The Queen invites the entire royal family to Sandringham for Christmas (SplashNews)
Given they are royalty, it seems quite sweet and, well normal, that the family gather together around the tree to add the final decorative touches. Of course, it isn't very normal for the said tree to be at least 18 feet tall and taken from your 20,000 acre estate.
Following the German tradition, the Windsors exchange Christmas presents on the 24th as opposed to Christmas day itself. Trestle tables are set up and assigned to individuals in the drawing room to mark where the goodies should go. Throughout the day, the royals and guests will secretly place their gifts on the tables to later be opened in front of everyone. So what do the people who have everything give to each other; frankincense, gold and diamonds? Not so! In what feels like a very British move, the royals give joke presents to each other and it's a case of 'the cheaper, the better'.
The royal family make their traditional walk to church (SplashNews)
One notable gift is from Princess Anne to Prince Charles, which took the shape of a white leather toilet seat cover. What was meant to be a joke actually became a staple for the King-in-waiting, since Charles now takes the loo cover with him when he travels abroad. However, the Queen does not appreciate gag gifts and prefers her presents to be practical. The result? Plenty of see-through umbrellas at £11 a pop.
According to Prince Charles he recommended that a fellow gift giver purchased one for his mother and it was such a hit with the royal matriarch that she now has several in a variety of colours.
Five Christmas dinners?!
Unsurprisingly it is a traditional affair at Sandringham come Christmas day. The family will kick things off with a full English breakfast and then a stroll to St Mary Magdalene's church for the 11 o'clock service. The sermon is quite short at a record 12 minutes and the Queen accepts her Holy Communion in private.
It will be Kate's first Christmas as a mum (SplashNews)
After waving to the well-wishers who will have gathered outside the parish, the royals will head home where they will get changed for lunch. The cooks in the kitchen will be cooking up a feast having to make a whopping five different Christmas servings to accommodate the royals and the staff.
1. Junior staff - 11 am
2. Senior staff - 12 pm
3. Royals - 1.15 pm
4. Junior kitchen staff - 2.15 pm
5. Royal chef - 4 pm
The eat a very traditional meal of Norfolk turkey with cold meats and roasted vegetables. At 3pm the family will sit down to watch the Queen's Speech on T.V. along with households up and down the country. Then a little down time and at 8.15 pm dinner is served. Several games of charades later and they can retires, but only if the Queen has left, as is the etiquette.
Boxing Day Shoot Out
Boxing Day is a low key event as the men go hunting and the Queen helps pick up the shot game. Select friends and family who weren't invited to the main Christmas event are invited to join the guests for the shoot.
On the 27th most of the brood disperse and visit their other relatives, leaving only the close family at the Sandringham estate. 850 cards and 1,450 Christmas puddings It wouldn't be the royal family if things didn't get a but strange from time to time and Christmas is no exception! We will definitely be forwarding our CV to the people at Sandringham though.
In March, (yes, MARCH) members of the household staff who work at the royal estate get to chose their Christmas present from the Queen. There are some rules, like you have to have worked there for over one year but still, a present from the Queen! As a junior member of staff you can expect to receive a gift of about £28-£35. Not the crown jewels but not bad.
That's not all. It's estimated that the Queen and Prince Philip send out 850 Christmas cards over the festive period to dignitaries, politicians, heads of states, friends and family. The Queen used to sign them all whilst on her Royal Yacht in August, but since it was sold she now puts pen to paper at home in Balmoral. But if you thought 850 cards was a lot, the Queen also dishes out an average of 1,450 Christmas puds to members of her staff.
We'd like some figgy pudding too Ma'am!
What do you think, would you like to have Christmas dinner with the Queen?