A very Danish Christmas

Dear Optimists,

Christmas is around the corner, in case you haven’t noticed. For me, as a Dane, Christmas is tomorrow evening. We spend the evening eating duck, goose, turkey and/or pork loin (which is horrible!), dancing around the Christmas tree while caroling, and opening presents.

I stopped celebrating Christmas during my teens, but it’s starting to grow on me again. This year I’m celebrating with the boyfriend, my parents-in-law and my Mum. I even bought a dress:

For dessert we will have a traditional Danish rice pudding with almonds and cherry sauce on top. The almonds are chopped, but we leave one whole almond in the pudding. Whoever gets the almond will receive a prize! I can’t wait!

Even though I really don’t fancy this dessert, I eat until I burst.

The following days will most likely be spend with family where we eat some more.

I’m curious: How are you going to celebrate Christmas? Do you have any special traditions?

Love,
Nadia.

Guest Post! Family traditions

Dear Optimists,

Don’t you just love Christmas? When I was younger Christmas was about presents and family and food, but also about the actual Christian meaning of Christmas.  As my brother and I grew into the teens, it became a lot more about the presents than anything else. Then as we grew up and both moved out of our first home, we realised it was about so much more than that! We both, at the ages of 27 and 29 (he’s older), still wake up at 6AM with excitement of the day to come, but the first Christmas we did this and we weren’t together, we had a little cry on the phone to each other.

The years we had spent being excited about presents, we realised we got excited for reasons unbeknown to us back then. We loved waking up together and opening our stockings, then waiting for the all important 8AM wake up call for Mum and Dad. We would head downstairs to see if the carrot and milk we left for Santa and the reindeer had been eaten and drank. We would open our presents from Santa with such excitement, and then get dressed in our best clothes for trips to see the family and then back home to settle for a big Christmas dinner and crackers 🙂 And oh the joy of Christmas films on the TV. Arguing over who got the remote and which film we would watch first was the best!

My brother now lives in Edinburgh and I very rarely get to do this ritual with him anymore. We managed to both be in the same place last Christmas, and I woke up in the morning at 6AM and bounced into his room to give him a big sloppy hug and kiss, with happy tears in my eye, since we were both home and could be like kids again. Every year, our presents are still from Santa, and last year we played our games on the Wii, instead of playing with Legos like we did when we were younger. (Den’s note: Why did you stop playing with Legos? They’re the best! Can I have yours?) But we still argued over the television. Some things never change!

Its amazing how some families have traditions that will live for years, I know I will enforce the same values into my children, and I hope they do with theirs. So my fellow Optimists… I ask, what family traditions do you have at Christmas?

Love always,
Beth of the great blog Life Since Then