Donning a tiara doesn't come without rules. New royal Meghan Markle must adbide by a different set of seasonal standards for her first official Christmas under Queen Elizabeth's reign. It looks like one will include not opening her gifts on Christmas Day - at least not officially. According to the royal family's official website, the regal family open presents together a day prior, during their afternoon tea: "On Christmas Eve, The Royal Family lay out their presents on trestle tables and will exchange their gifts at teatime."
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry last Christmas Photo: Getty Images
As far as presents go, the Queen annually gives to each member of the royal household. The 92-year-old personally hands out presents to those at Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. Her royal website adds: "Continuing the tradition from her father, King George VI and her grandfather, George V – The Queen also gives Christmas puddings to her staff."
Around 1,500 Christmas puddings are paid for by the monarch and distributed to her staff. Each pudding is, of course, accompanied by a holiday card from the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh. In addition to donating money to several charities in Windsor each Christmas, the monarch follows another jolly custom.
The royal family have a traditional Christmas Photo: Royal.uk
Elizabeth gifts Christmas trees to Westminster Abbey, St. Paul's Cathedral, St. Giles' Cathedral and the Canongate Kirk in Edinburgh. Some Churches and schools in the Sandringham area can also expect to receive a tree from Her Majesty. Queen Charlotte, consort of George III, is thought to have introduced the Christmas tree tradition to the Royal Family. The later enthusiasm for the custom by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert made it a popular tradition throughout the country.
On Christmas day, Queen Elizabeth and her family are set to attend a morning service at St Mary Magdalene, Sandringham. This historic country church was visited by the Queen's Great-Great Grandmother Queen Victoria, and dates back to the 16th century.