It might just be me getting older and therefore more grumpy but each year people seem to be bringing up Christmas earlier and earlier. As soon as September hits people seen to think ‘right that’s Summer over, let’s miss Autumn and skip right to the good bit of Winter; Christmas.’ Don’t get me wrong I love Christmas as much as the next person but what annoys me and what seems to be happening earlier and more so each year is my family and friends asking me for a list of gifts I want from them. I of course love getting presents and will always be greatful for people doing that but it is rather depressing handing someone a shopping list of things you want. Call me an old Romantic but I love getting surprise presents that show people know me well and have thought of me. I also think that there is more to Christmas than stressing about shopping so with that in mind I thought I would share some Christmas traditions from around the world that don’t involve manic consumerism. Perhaps I’ll even do some of these with the family this year as they sound pretty fun.
In Caracas, the capital of Venezuela, revellers travel to early-morning church services on roller skates throughout the festive period. The roads are even closed off specially. Now I don’t attend church but I am certainly up for giving skating a go!
Ukrainian Christmas trees are traditionally decorated with a fake spider and web. The custom, which is said to bring good luck, stems from an old wives’ tale about a poor woman who could not afford to decorate her tree. She woke up on Christmas morning to find a spider had covered it in a glittering web. I think this is such a sweet story and showsthe true spirit of Christmas. Also, seens as Christmas keeps creeping earlier and earlier and over shadowing Halloween, perhaps it would only be fair that a little Halloween lingers around till Christmas!
Taking a dip in the sea on Christmas day is fast growing in popularity in the UK. I had heard about it on New Years day but basically I think any Winter time dip in freezing UK waters is going to be rather invigorating. Not too sure I’d be able to convince anyone to join me though.
The Christmas Eve box is a relatively new concept I think. I certainly have only come across it in the last few years but it is a new tradition I love (definitely beats that blooming elf on the shelf monster!) My sister and her partner made the kids the most wonderful Christmas Eve box last year that had all these wonderful bits in:
- Christmas PJS
- Hot chocolate
- Christmas Dvds
- Plate for Santa’s mince pie etc
- Christmas books
- Christmas teddy
I know these are bought presents but I like the idea behind the Christmas Eve box that it is for spending together as a family on Christmas Eve. You could add crafts or baking ingredients too which would be lovely.
What are your Christmas traditions?
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