Thursday, December 23, 2021

Getting Ready for Christmas

Tomorrow is Christmas over here in Euroland.  Sometimes people forget that this isn't my first Christmas in Euroland.  Tomorrow will be my 13th.  Maybe people assume that I fly back to the U.S. every year or something but without fail, someone will always point out to me that Americans celebrate Christmas on the 25th.  Which is true but not always.  

In the U.S., it's Christmas Eve which is still basically Christmas because in the USA we usually celebrate both.  As a kid, I remember going to one part of the family for Christmas Eve, the 24th, for a big dinner, presents, and usually midnight mass.  Then on Christmas Morning, the 25th, it was presents with the immediate family, and then lunch and presents with the other part of the family.  Nowadays, with so many people getting divorced and re-married it's not that uncommon for some kids to have two sets of parents and four sets of grandparents.  

Let's not forget that not everyone celebrates Christmas.  I know many people who celebrate Hanukkah and some celebrate both which is Christmakkah or Hanumas.

There are a few more differences.  Americans put up the Christmas tree usually right after Thanksgiving and it stays up for over a month.  Some take it down around the 26th, or just after the New Year's.  Usually no later than the first weekend after New Year's.  Anything after that is tacky.  The same goes for outside Christmas decorations.  

Czechs, and Germans, normally decorate the Christmas tree during the day on the 24th.  Sometimes the day before.  Claudia's mom finished decorating the tree this morning.  The tree will say up until 6 January for the Feast of the Three Kings which ends the Christmas holidays.

In Czechland it's Jezíšek, and in Slovakia it's Ježiško, Little Baby Jesus, that brings the gifts.  It's the same in parts of Germany (and Austria) where it's the Christkindl who brings the gifts.  In other parts of Germany, we wait for the Weihnachtsmann, Father Christmas.  Tünde is excited about der Weihnachtsmann coming tomorrow.  She's planning on singing four or five songs for him.

Today Tünde read me a Christmas story called Das Geheimnis der Zuckerstrange.  It's the German version of The Candymaker's Gift which tells the story of how the candy cane was created.  I'd never heard it before but it's a cute story.

Somehow it was decided that I was making the Buletten for dinner tomorrow.  Buletten are traditional German meatballs made out of ground beef, ground pork, onion, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper.  They are panfried but can then be eaten either hot or cold with good mustard.  I think that they turned out fine but we won't know until tomorrow.  Hopefully they will be better than the frozen Ikea meatballs I had last year.

Later we went to check out Dark Matter.  Maybe this was my reward for the Buletten.

No comments:

Post a Comment