Today is our last day in the office before the Christmas break. It seems like it’s crept up on us this year but now with just two days to go, we’re starting to look forward to our various celebrations. I asked a few people how they’ll be celebrating this year.
My mother is Finnish so we (my three siblings, partners, niece and nephew) have our Christmas meal and presents on Christmas Eve at her house, which is always beautifully decorated Scandinavian style (no tinsel!). That means Christmas Day is like Boxing Day where we just chill out, watch TV and have left overs.
On Boxing Day (26th December) I will cook at my house and have some of my husband’s cousins over, who are from Albania and don’t really celebrate Christmas, but like to get together – and will hopefully like my cooking!
I go to my parents, who live up north, and because they live in the middle of nowhere, it’s a nice, quiet setting to celebrate. On Christmas Eve, I help prepare the veggies and set the table so all my Dad has to do is cook the dinner on the day! We exchange presents at midnight and on Christmas Day, we have dinner around 2pm before settling into playing some mahjong with the family.
We usually buy a Christmas tree, then we spend about two hours in squeezing the Christmas tree into the previous year’s Christmas tree stand which is usually much smaller than the current one. After realising how many things we haven’t bought for the Christmas dinner, we start to decorate the tree and then get a surprise when we see that the cheap Christmas tree lights that we bought in the market for £0.99 don’t work.
When we have enough stress, we start cooking and feel happy because we have a lot of time until our guests arrive, then suddenly someone rings the door bell. Our uninvited guests enter the flat and start consuming half of the food we planned to serve for the dinner.
I’ll be celebrating in Finland by eating too much Christmas ham, going to a Christmas concert, and listening to the Declaration of Christmas Peace. I wanted to go skiing but there’s no snow :(
I am trying to make a Trinidadian rum cake for Christmas this year… this is the first time I’m trying to make it – it’s an old family recipe. When I was younger my Gran used to send one in the post every Christmas. Preparations started in August! Step 1 is soaking lots of fruit in rum and cherry brandy for a few months…
In the Ukraine we celebrate Christmas on 7th January. Children go from house to house and when people answer the door the children throw a handful of grain then sing a song in exchange for sweets or money (sort of a combination of Halloween and carol singing).
We’d love to hear how you plan to celebrate the holiday. Have a lovely Christmas and New Year everyone. We’ll be back in 2012!