15 Christmassy Things Youll Know If You Were Born Before The Year 2000

Christmas has changed a lot since my sisters and I were kids. Once we entered a new millennium, traditions and expectations shifted, and now the special day is almost unrecognisable.

Here are 15 things you’ll only remember if you were born before the year 2000:


Going through the Argos catalogue and listing everything you wanted.

Twitter: @Redwitchhobbit / Via Twitter

Everyone had their own system – some used ticks, some would cut out the things they wanted and scrapbook them, some would just use a good ol’ fashioned highlighter. Whatever the method, the best way to get across what it is you wanted at Christmas was the Crimbo Bible. RIP this legend.


If you didn’t have the Argos catalogue, you had to walk through the aisles of Woolworths or Toys R Us for inspo.

View this video on YouTube

I know it’s a sign of the times, but there’s nothing more disheartening than hearing my five-year-old nephew speak up from behind a tablet and say, “can I get this?” The satisfaction of finding the perfect toy on the shelf all by yourself has been taken over by adverts on TV and tablets.


A badge maker and a selection box were elite presents!

The greatest gift that one human being can ever give to another is their time. No, wait, it’s a Selection Box!

09:16 PM – 31 Jul 2021

Twitter: @richardosman / Via Twitter

Everyone I knew when I was a kid had a badge made by yours truly. And while I sat there proudly displaying my arts and craft abilities, I was munching on a Crunchie bar from my selection box. This will have been the same for many nineties kids, and let’s not forget the fact that selection boxes used to include much larger chocolate bars… or have I just grown?


Getting TV recommendations from the Radio Times or renting a Christmas movie from Blockbuster was a must.

I have a copy of the 1982 Radio Times if anybody wants to know what’s on this Christmas!

02:24 PM – 06 Dec 2021

Twitter: @kenkelly1

There was nothing like taking a cold walk down to your local Blockbusters and picking out your favourite Christmas movie – Tim Allen IS the original Santa Claus, and you can’t change my mind! It was also kind of easier in a way, because there weren’t a billion different places to choose a movie from. You were given a selection, and you picked what you wanted to watch from what was available. The same goes for the Radio Times, you knew ~exactly~ what you were watching because you had no other choice.


A standard advent calendar with a little picture behind each door was all you needed (the gingerbread man was my favourite).

Twitter: @itgirlenergy / Via Twitter

When I was a kid, you were lucky to get a chocolate on Christmas day, but lately, I’ve seen advertisements for advent calendars worth over a thousand pounds! Kids can build their own toys or get a new book every day for the month of December – the possibilities are endless and I’m a little scared by it all!


Getting up early to hit the sales on Boxing Day was peak Christmas vibes.

Image Source / Via Getty

Despite the fact that we had a house full of brand new things from the day before, there was nothing quite as satisfying as snapping up an amazing deal on Boxing Day. I’ve known people to leave their Christmas shopping completely until Boxing Day, which has its flaws but is an okay idea I guess.


NOW That’s What I Call Xmas was always on while we waited for our Christmas dinner.


Even though it’s the same mix of songs every year, nothing felt more correct than getting out the “Christmas album”, and putting it on the stereo, which remained unused the rest of the year. Actually, I’d be surprised if kids knew what a stereo is nowadays, never mind them having a seasonal CD on their shelf. 


Hearing the famous sound of the Coco-Cola advert meant you knew the festive season had begun.

View this video on YouTube

Is there anything more satisfying than hearing the opening notes of the Coca-Cola Christmas advert? It really did start the countdown to the big day, and no matter how many times it came on TV, it still set off the excited butterflies in my tummy!


Rollerblades were all the rage.

I gotta buy some rollerblades a mp3 player some earbuds and just roll around it’ll be such a vibe

03:05 AM – 13 Dec 2021

Twitter: @ChrisSexTime

The moment I was given my first pair of rollerblades, I refused to take them off no matter where we went. I whizzed around the empty streets trying to find the smoothest bit of tarmac, and begged to stay out as late as I could. They’re making a comeback and honestly, that fills my heart with happiness.


Hand delivering Christmas cards to everyone you knew and hanging them up at home was a thing.


Your mum probably knew everyone’s address off-by-heart, and each card was handwritten with a personal note. Then, at school every morning, you would have a small pile of cards from your friends waiting for you. Of course, each card you received was hung up proudly on display at home – it was a competition to see how popular your household was, don’t you know?


I swear there used to be a much better selection of chocolates in the assortment tins.


I’m not sure who made the decision to remove the Galaxy truffle from the Celebrations tin, but I wanna have a word. Toblerone and Picnic in a tin of Heroes? Gone. And just to rub salt in the wounds, these classic tins aren’t even tins anymore. What happened to reducing plastic and saving the planet?!


We used to actually see friends and family in the New Year and have to individually wish them a Merry Christmas.

The Orchard / Via GIPHY

Times have changed drastically! Now we can send a quick message to every single person we know whether they’re in the country or not, or you can even post a quick story for everyone to see. There’s no need for any personal touches, and if there is someone in particular you want to message, you just DM them.


I would look forward to brand new Christmas specials from all of my favourite shows.

View this video on YouTube

Every year there was a new Christmas special here in the UK, and making sure you watched it was nearly as important as Christmas day itself! I remember ones from Gavin & StaceyFather Ted, and of course The Vicar of Dibley. Admittedly there are a few on this year, but it’s just not the same!


Someone would always get the camcorder out and make a home video of the entire day.

Fox Searchlight Pictures / Via GIPHY

It was basically our version of a Christmas vlog! There would be a narration and absolutely no editing to be seen – the whole day would be captured and stored away on a tape to watch again years later. The grainy camera quality actually added to the video.


And finally, there was nothing quite like finding a Gameboy under the tree.

View this video on YouTube

I think we can all remember that iconic startup sound! Gameboy was the pinnacle of technology when I was a kid, and to find one waiting for you from the big man himself was as exciting as it got. 

Remember how Christmas used to be? If there is anything I’ve missed, comment below what Christmas was like for YOU in the ’90s!